This is actually my first article here and I trying my best to keep it real and do my best 🙂
Before we talk about “Rape” we should really know what it means. I mean the definition.
Rape is a type of sexual intercourse, which is initiated by one or more person against another person without that person’s consent. The act may be carried out by physical force, coercion, abuse of authority or with a person who is incapable of valid consent, such as one who is unconscious, incapacitated, or below the Legal age of consent.
We have seen the definition. Now we are going to go deeply into it. We are going to look at the causes of Rape, How to prevent yourself from getting raped and render the best Advices to the people out there. #SayNoToRape Project focuses on Africa. Africa has experienced this Demon called rape so much that we have the highest Rape rating in the world. We are closely going to look into this and find a possible solution for it, so we are going to have a peek from few African countries.
Firstly, let’s look into Nigeria. Let us find the real cause of Rape in Nigeria.
Every year, Rape cases are being reported to the Nigerian Police Force. Actions are taken, YES! They are but after few months, the news will fade and every chapter about the case will be permanently closed and the suspect will be roaming the streets free and happy.
Causes of Rape in Nigeria
Every country has its own cause of rape, depending on how they live their lives. There are so many causes of rape in Nigeria and I will take my time to list them out.
- Dress Codes: Girls often dress indecently, they wear short skirts and blouses that show and exposes their body parts. Ladies! Please, this attracts men. Yes, they do. But if they eventually approach you and you don’t want to hang out with them (the soft way), they will definitely want to do it the hard way. Some men can do anything to satisfy their urge. My question here is; “If you were not ready to accept them, why tempt them? This question should really come into our mind when we choose our outfits. Our dress code really matters; it is one of the motivators.
- Child Abuse: If the rate of Rape in Nigeria is 76%, 59% of rape incidents are being suffered by Children. Not just any child but kids that has been sent out there to hustle for the Family; Example are hawkers. Child Abuse is one of the major causes of rape. Children go out in the morning to hawk foodstuffs, fruits and other things and come back home late at night all in the name of hustling for the family. Parents, Do you ever think about them whiles they are out there hustling? We should really ask ourselves questions before we embark on our goals and aims. Children are molested when they sell their products to their male clients; some call them cute names just to tease them, seducing them by touching them and eventually rape them. We should try to figure out the negative part of the actions we are or about taking and work on it.
I recently had a chat with one of the Most inspirational and Motivational Speaker in Nigeria who is also a Rapper. In person of Adesola Adesimbo Idowu A.k.a Weird Mc, who said that “Raping is Wickedness”, Men just rape in other to gain pleasure and satisfy their sexual urge. I totally I agree with her because there is no way a reasonable man will just want to rape a woman. Imagine it was your mother, wife or daughter, how will you feel? These victims have families you know? These questions should pop into a reasonable man’s mind before involving himself in such abominable act. She also says alcohols and drugs are causes. That girls go out clubbing and drink anyhow without thinking what is going to happen to them afterwards.
Hmmmmm.. We have seen few causes of Rapes in Nigeria; now let us look at one other African country.
South Africa has one of the highest rape statistics in the world. In 1988, a total of 19 308 cases of rape were reported to the South African Police Service (SAPS). In 1994, this figure increased to 42 429 reported cases of rape. In 1996, 50 481 cases of rape were reported to the SAPS. According to the National Institute for Crime Prevention and Rehabilitation (NICRO), the situation is more serious.
NICRO has estimated that only one in twenty rapes are reported to the police. On the basis of this estimate, it is calculated that one rape occurs every 83 seconds. The SAPS has recently presented an even bleaker picture and they have suggested that one rape occurs every 35 seconds.
Various explanations have been proposed to explain what factors may contribute to the high incidence of rape in South Africa. These include:
- Sociological explanations which locate the roots of rape in male and female roles in our society. South Africa is traditionally a male dominated and patriarchal society. Women hold limited power and authority and are frequently exploited. Research suggests that rape is more prevalent in such societies.
- Societal attitudes may contribute to rape. Rape is more common in societies which accept and believe in the “rape myths”. These myths are false ideas about what rape is and include beliefs such as: men rape because they cannot control their sexual lust, women encourage rape, rapists are strangers and women enjoy being raped. These myths serve to label women as in some way responsible for the rape and to view men’s actions as excusable, thereby giving silent consent to their actions. These rape myths also reduce the likelihood of women reporting their rape, for fear of being blamed and stigmatized.
- A “culture of violence” has dominated South African society for years. Our current level of criminal and political violence has its roots in apartheid and political struggle. The ongoing struggle and transition has left many men with a sense of powerlessness and perceived emasculation. Studies suggest that the majority of perpetrators of violence are male and the victims are frequently women and children. This may represent a displacement of aggression in which men of all races feel able to reassert their power and dominance against the perceived “weaker” individuals in society. In this context, rape is an assertion of power and aggression in an attempt to reassert the rapist’s masculinity.
- Inadequacies in our criminal justice system create an environment where it is relatively easy to commit an offence of rape without any severe consequences. Rape has one of the lowest conviction rates of all serious crimes in South Africa. Offenders frequently evade arrest and conviction and continue to intimidate their victims and the victim’s family. In the absence of effective witness protection services, women often withdraw or fail to report cases as they fear intimidation by the perpetrator. Sentencing tends to be lenient which creates an impression that rape is not seen as a serious crime.
Impact of rape
Rape is one of the most devastating personal traumas. Many victims feel as if there lives have been shattered and that their psychological and physical privacy has been invaded. The emotional scars can take months and sometimes years to heal.
Typical reactions following a rape include feelings of shock, disbelief, numbness, fear, anger, guilt, self-blame, sadness and sometimes elation. Changes in behavior are common such as withdrawal, sleep disturbances, hyper vigilance mood swings, poor concentration, lifestyle changes and avoidance . These rape trauma reactions are similar to post traumatic stress reactions but symptoms such as avoiding men, sexual difficulties, feeling ashamed and dirty, are specific to the nature of the crime.
Contrary to popular belief, the majority of rapists are known to the victim. In these situations, the survivor may blame herself for somehow encouraging the assault. Frequently, the victim’s own sense of shame and stigma is exacerbated by the judgmental reactions of others.
It is ironic that at the time when support is most needed, many rape survivors feel alone and let down by loved ones, friends and institutions that are there to protect and support them. Caregivers need to offer the victim support and reassurance and to educate and support the family to help facilitate the recovery of the survivor. It is advisable to refer the victim for trauma counseling if these services are available. Through counselling, the victim can work through the experience and begin to view herself as a survivor who can still lead a happy and independent life.
Sensitive and empathic management by caregivers often helps the victim feel validated, understood and cared for. Unfortunately, many rape survivors undergo “secondary traumatisation” when caregivers, police and others to whom the trauma survivor turns for emotional, legal, financial, medical or other assistance respond in a negative or insensitive manner. Many rape victims perceive this secondary trauma as worse than the rape itself as it leaves them feeling betrayed by those that are designated “caregivers” in society.
This insensitivity may be due a lack of training and awareness. In addition many of our police, medical personnel and court officials are overworked, burnt out and emotionally depleted which makes it difficult to respond with empathy to the rape victim. The caregiver may see the survivor as just another complainant/ patient. However, for the victim, this may be the most devastating and crucial moment in her life. It is essential that caregivers remain sensitive to the needs of the victim and are aware of their own beliefs and attitudes which may impact on the management of the victim. This will reduce the level of secondary traumatisation and will help to ease the suffering of the numerous South African women who have lived through the horror of rape.
Lewis S. (1994) Dealing with Rape. Johannesburg:Sached Books.
Mastakis, A. (1992) I Can’t Get Over It. A Handbook for Trauma Survivors. Oakland, New Harbinger Publications.
Vetten. L. Roots of a Rape Crisis. Crime and Conflict 1997; 8:9-13.
We have seen what Mary Robertson has to say about Rape in South Africa and its causes, so let us learn how to Prevent Rape and control our urges.
14 WAYS TO PREVENT A POTENTIAL RAPE
ü Do not be distracted, especially by technology. Do not jog with your iPod because attackers are looking for easy, distracted individuals who look-like they are not paying attention to surroundings. The same can be said for talking on your cell phone. But, on the other hand, if you feel someone is following you, pull out your cell phone and pretend to be talking to someone because your “conversation partner” would be aware of an attack. If your potential attacker is going for “no witnesses,” they might back off and change their mind. You can even pretend you are meeting-up with someone and they are already here/heading this way VERY soon. Don’t say “5 minutes” or the attacker may only decide to take action quicker. If they think you are in safe hands or will be in less than a minute, they might back off.
ü Learn to trust your gut instincts. It could save you from being raped or worse. If you feel uneasy or unsure in anyway, it is in your best interest to get away and get help. Use your instincts and be aware of your FREEZE instinct. Move quickly … fight, flight or freezes are our natural instincts, so be aware that all 3 exist.
ü Be aware of your surroundings at all times. Parking lots and parking garages are two of the sites that are most often targeted by attempted rapists. These men are predators, so view your surroundings carefully. If you are in a parking lot and feel someone is following you, start making noise – talk to yourself loudly, talk to an imaginary person, or pretend to talk on your cell phone. The louder the potential victim, the more the predator is apt to freeze.
ü How you dress matters. Not how attractive you dress, but how hard it may be to get away should you be approached by an attacker, and how easy it is to remove the clothes. Long, thin skirts that make it hard to run make you vulnerable. Harder-to-remove clothes are the best. Overalls and one-piece jumpsuits and rompers (preferably with rear or side fasteners) are best; they are hard for someone else to remove forcefully. Avoid pants and skirts with elastic waists – these are easiest to remove. Slacks and skirts with the fastener at the rear or side are advantageous because these make it harder for an attacker to reach to unfasten these. Belts are also great; they are an extra item.
ü Yell, shout and draw attention to yourself. Attackers usually have an idea of how the attack will happen. Disrupt that idea. Fight like a psychotic cat, and yell loudly and strongly.
ü Take a basic self defense course, such as Rape Aggression Defense (RAD). Contact your local police office for programs such as RAD.
ü Stay careful at parties and bars. Treat your drink like a $100.00 bill. Don’t let anyone hold your drink. Do not leave your drink anywhere. Avoid anything that somebody gives you. It could be “counterfeited.” Always hold, keep and get your own drinks. Never leave a drink unattended for even a moment. Keep your hand over the top of your drink because it’s easy to drop something into it. Do not accept a drink from a date unless the bartender or wait staff delivers it straight to you. Don’t want to be rude? Who cares, just state your preferences, AND if he doesn’t adhere to the waiter drink delivery, then take the drink to the restroom with you and dump it. GHB dissolves immediately, especially if its powdered. DO NOT leave your friends alone and drunk. DO NOT be left behind by your friends. Tell other people where you are going. Be aware of public bathrooms in clubs and bars. Women have been attacked in the ladies room if it is deserted.
ü Think and practice being careful at dance clubs or other places with loud music. Sometimes it is so loud that nobody will be able to hear you cry for help.
ü Work on being assertive. If somebody is giving you unwanted attention, tell them to back off. There is no need to be polite when somebody is making unwanted sexual advances.
ü Understand that Vans are the #1 vehicles used in rapes. Rapists will park next to the driver’s side and, as you are trying to get in, they will pull you into the van. If there is a van on the driver’s side of your car, go in through the passenger’s door. If there are vans on both sides, go back to where you were and get someone like a security guard to walk you to your car. Don’t park any place that feels unsafe.
ü Keep personal information private. Don’t advertise your info verbally or on the Internet. Also, be very wary of meeting up with anyone whom you meet on the Internet. There is never a good reason to meet up with a person whom you have never met in person, or who talks you into meeting-up when you are hesitant. If you think you must do so, bring someone else, preferably a friend who is older and meet the person in a public place.
ü Understand vulnerability factors: According to the CDC, vulnerabilities include prior sexual abuse as a minor, being female (gender), being under the age of 18, alcohol or drug use, and predators who groom their victims into believing.
ü Walk with confidence. Look up as you walk and stand up straight; pretending as though you have two big panthers on either side of you as you walk may sound silly, but it can help boost confidence. Attackers are more likely to go for those who they think cannot defend themselves.
ü Bring a dog, if going to the park, beach, etc. alone. If you have a dog with you, it’s like having another person with you. Large dogs are intimidating to predators, even if your pet isn’t exactly brave. If you don’t have a large dog, bring the small one anyway. Chances are when your little pup sees you in trouble; he’ll be more than happy to protest. Predators won’t usually attack a person with a dog, large or small, because dogs usually make such a racket you’re bound to draw attention, which is undesirable for predators. Who knows – your poodle may just surprise your attacker when he grabs you.
Wow!! So long isn’t it? You can come and read it over and over again. It will still be here. 🙂
Can Women Rape Men?
In another thread, Daisy Deadhead asks if women can rape men, and if so, how?
There are three ways women can rape men. Adult women can and do commit statutory rape against underage boys. When this phenomenon first came to light with a female high school teacher and an underage male student, it was shocking and I think many people assumed such a thing was freakishly rare. Subsequently, a number of such cases have been publicized suggesting this kind of occurrence is not nearly as freakishly uncommon as many believed. As with men and underage girls, the complicity of the victim does not alter the criminality of the act.
The second way women can rape men is through unwilling (anal or oral) penetration of men with fingers or objects. (I don’t know if unwilling oral penetration is always treated as rape in law.)
Finally, a woman can rape a man through coercing them to penetrate the woman with an erect penis. Though it is not easy to ‘will’ an erection, it’s not always impossible, either. Men, like women, can become physically aroused despite not actually wanting to have sex with someone. This may occur in response to physical manipulation or other reasons. Coercion need not be through physical force, obviously; a man can be blackmailed into having sex (as one commenter described his own victimization here).
Let us make Africa a better and safe place to be in…. Woman should play their part and avoid all this things… Men should learn how to Control their urges. Some country suggests Masturbation in other to decrease Rape rate. I have nothing to say about that but if you do it, you should stick to it and stop creating pains and misery to a woman.
Women are treasures and should be taken good care of. Women are Gold.
Let’s be reasonable and humane and SAY NO TO RAPE!!!!!! Thanks 🙂
You can download the docx. file too – download docx file here —–>> Say no to RAPE