Learn the Truth about Rape – WOMEN in RECOVERY

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Painting: Ruben’s ‘Rape’

An alternative, feminist reading of several of the works discussed in “Authoritative and Disciplined Discussions of Master’s Pieces,” is presented by Margaret Carroll in an article entitled “The Erotics of Absolutism: Rubens and the Mystification of Sexual Violence” (in The Expanding Discourse: Feminism and Art History, eds. Norma Broude and Mary D. Garrard, pp.138-159).

For the complete article see JSTOR.:

p. 139: Rubens’s Rape of the Daughters of Leucippus confronts its viewers with an interpretative dilemna. Painted about 1615 to 1618, the life-size composition illustrates the story recounted by Theocritus and Ovid of how the twin brothers Castor and Pollux (called the Dioscuri) forcibly abducted and later married the daughters of King Leucippus. Rubens’s depiction of the abduction is marked by some striking ambiguities: an equivocation between violence and solicitude in the demeanor of the brothers, and an equivocation between resistance and gratification in the response of the sisters. The spirited ebullience and sensual appeal of the group work to override our darker reflections about the coercive nature of the abduction.

For these reasons many viewers have wanted to discount the predatory violence of the brothers’ act and to interpret the painting in a benign spirit, perhaps as a Neoplatonic allegory of the progress of the soul toward heaven, or as an allegory of marriage. Although I agree that a reference to marriage may be at play here, I also believe that any interpretation of the painting is inadequate that does not attempt to come to terms with it as a celebratory depiction of sexual violence and the forcible subjugation of women by men….

The perception of this Act must change..it is violence ‘ONLY‘.

… Men must Take Women off the pedestal to end the Illusion of Conquest.!

Rape has been happening since the beginning of time…and must STOP.

The IN-active Innocents are more ‘responsible‘ than the Active GUILTY.

Sexual Assault, as this crime against Humanity is donned, is a global problem that is reaching epidemic levels, rather than lessening. In our opinion, our world needs to research the psychological cause of this violence, examine the ‘motive and purpose’ named by the perpetrators and work to remove the fear basis that contributes to the cause of this kind of violent act against Humanity.

The first step to ending the STIGMA of this crime; ergo, taking away the image of Power and Control, is to: DE-tach the association with SEX; making this an Act of Pure Violence.

By erasing any attachment to sexuality, woman, women, gender equality, power, strength, weak, strong, emotion, etc., the perpatrators no longer will enjoy any form of misguided sexual pleasures from this Act of Violence. Once the ‘race consciousness’ is changed, hopefully the Act of Rape will lose some of its luster. Women must start to think in a mind-set, that RAPE is no different than being robbed at gun-point, other than the product being robbed. It is a crime of violence, and nothing to else.

As for the fear of catching AIDS, HIV, etc.; the only suggestion that we can make, is to think of this: One can catch any virus, anywhere, anytime…. if it was meant to be.

The STIGMA of RAPE must be removed immediately so to Empower Women

to Fight Back as Educators, not Victims.

There must be another way to for these attackers to achieve satisfactory levels of Power and Control; using other outlets that do not include raping another human being. The governments and population, as a whole, must take away the primary guilty party to this act, ACCEPTANCE.

For example, in Pakistan, RAPE is ‘accepted’ as part of HONOR PUNISHMENT

A Pakistani Woman who was gang raped in so called “honour” punishment says she fears for her safety after court overturned the convictions of five men.

http://www.prophetofdoom.net/ http://www.thereligionofpeace.com/



by Clare G. Holzman, Ph.D.

I can’t believe this actually happened.

It doesn’t seem real.”

Barbara (not her real name) sat facing me in the tiny counseling office. She was shaking. The previous night, she had been raped in her apartment by a man she had considered a good friend. The hospital emergency room had referred her to the rape counseling program where I worked.

Like other rape survivors, Barbara faced many decisions in the hours, days, and months following the rape.
Although women are more often the victims of rape than men, and will be the focus of this article, male victims face many of the same recovery issues, as well as others that are specific to men.

1. Whether and where to get medical attention

Rape survivors often have physical injuries, including internal injuries, they may not be aware of. Treatment can also prevent pregnancy and sexually transmitted diseases.

The medical exam also collects evidence that may help convict the rapist; the sooner the exam is done, the better the chances are that important evidence will be preserved. These services are available in hospital emergency rooms. Many hospitals treat rape survivors without advance payment, even if they have no insurance.

2. Whether to report the rape to the police

Many rape survivors want to see the rapist punished, and protect others from being victimized. They want society to make a clear statement that rape is a crime that will not be tolerated. Playing a part in the rapist’s arrest and conviction can make a woman feel more powerful and less like a helpless victim.

At a more practical level, a woman must report the rape to be eligible for Crime Victims’ Compensation benefits. Crime Victims’ Compensation can pay for medical expenses, other financial losses resulting from the rape, and even long-term psychotherapy. Information about how to apply can be obtained from the state Crime Victims Board, the police, or a rape crisis counseling program.

On the other hand, a woman may choose not to report the rape. She or someone she knows may have been treated badly by the police in the past. The rapist may have threatened to harm her or her family if she reports the crime. Furthermore, pressing charges can be a long, painful process. Every woman must decide for herself, based on her own circumstances, whether it makes sense to go through it.

3. How to make space for healing

Sometimes it can feel like recovering from rape is a full-time job all by itself. The survivor may be overwhelmed by confusing emotions — fear, grief, guilt, shame, rage. She may be unable to sleep at night and unable to stay awake during the day. She may have trouble thinking clearly, concentrating, and making decisions. Some women have no choice but to put their emotions aside and go on coping with the demands of their daily reality.

Some find that they feel better if they carry on with their normal routine as much as possible. Others find it helpful to take some time off from work, let the housework slide, and concentrate on doing things that make them feel better — warm baths, meditation, listening to their favorite music, anything that feels soothing and comforting.

4. How to increase safety

Rape often motivates the survivor to think about ways of making herself safer. She may want to change the locks on her door, put bars on her windows, or move to another neighborhood. She may decide to be less trusting and more cautious. She may take self-defense classes. None of this means that the rape was her fault because she didn’t take these precautions sooner; the risk of rape has become more real to her and she is taking action to protect herself.

5. Where to seek support

The best family members and friends to turn to are those who will stay calm and who will not blame, criticize, or try to take over. It’s good to have more than one person to turn to; some people are duds at dealing with intense emotions, but terrific about practical things like baby sitting or providing transportation to a medical appointment.

A hot line counselor or an in-person rape crisis counselor can be a supportive listener when family and friends are unavailable or are too emotionally involved to be helpful. She can provide information about the recovery process and about available resources. She can be an advocate if the survivor runs into bureaucratic roadblocks in obtaining services.

After the initial crisis, a support group can help to break down isolation, secrecy, and shame. The survivor can see that women she likes and respects have had experiences similar to her own, and that they like and respect her. Because members of the group are at different stages of healing, she can gain perspective on how far she has come and see evidence that further progress is possible.

If the recovery process has stalled, psychotherapy may be the next step. A rape can bring up old anxieties and conflicts about issues like trust, control, sexuality, self-worth, etc. Sometimes it triggers feelings and memories related to earlier traumas, such as child sexual abuse, that need longer-term treatment than a rape crisis counselor can provide.

If depression or anxiety is severe and shows no signs of improving, medication may be useful. Recovery from rape doesn’t mean that it’s as if the rape never happened. Most women find that in some ways they have changed permanently.

Recovery does mean that, more and more of the time, the survivor is not thinking about the rape. Her emotions are no longer dominated by it. She is able to envision a future for herself, to set goals and work to achieve them. Her life moves forward.

DEFINITION: It is Critical that ‘everyone‘ understands the actual meaning of the Act of RAPE.

Rape is a type of sexual assault usually involving sexual intercourse, which is initiated by one or more persons 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. The term is most often defined in criminal law. A person who commits an act of rape is known as a rapist.

Internationally, the incidence of rapes recorded by the police during 2008 varied between 0.1 in Egypt per 100,000 people and 91.6 per 100,000 people in Lesotho with 5.0 per 100,000 people in Russia as the mean. According to the American Medical Association (1995), sexual violence, and rape in particular, is considered the most under-reported violent crime. The rate of reporting, prosecution and convictions for rape varies considerably in different jurisdictions. The U.S. Bureau of Justice Statistics (1999) estimated that 91% of U.S. rape victims are female and 9% are male, with 99% of the offenders being male. Rape by strangers is usually less common than rape by persons the victim knows, and several studies argue that male-male and female-female prison rape are quite common and may be the least reported forms of rape.

When part of a widespread and systematic practice, rape and sexual slavery are recognized as crimes against humanity and war crimes. Rape is also recognized as an element of the crime of genocide when committed with the intent to destroy, in whole or in part, a targeted ethnic group.

The definition of rape varies both in different parts of the world and at different times in history. It is defined in many jurisdictions as sexual intercourse, or other forms of sexual penetration, of one person by another person without the consent of the victim. The United Nations defines it as “sexual intercourse without valid consent,” and the World Health Organization defined it in 2002 as “physically forced or otherwise coerced penetration – even if slight – of the vulva or anus, using a penis, other body parts or an object.” {ACT of VIOLENCE} Some countries such as Germany are now, however, using more inclusive definitions which do not require penetration and the 1998 International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda defines it as “a physical invasion of a sexual nature committed on a person under circumstances which are coercive”. In some jurisdictions, the term “rape” has been phased out of legal use in favor of terms such as “sexual assault” or “criminal sexual conduct“.

Some jurisdictions continue to define rape to cover only acts involving penile penetration of the vagina, treating all other types of non-consensual sexual activity as sexual assault. In Brazil, for example, the legal code defines rape as non-consensual vaginal sex. Thus male rape, anal rape, and oral rape are not included. The FBI uses the following definition of rape in compiling their annual Uniform Crime Reports: “The carnal knowledge of a female forcibly and against her will.” This has been interpreted to mean only forced penile-vaginal penetration.


Arizona Rape Prevention and Education Program
Campus Outreach Services, Inc.
CARDV – Center Against Rape & Domestic Violence
Colorado Coalition Against Sexual Assault
Date Rape Drugs (U. Illinois, Urbana-Champaign)
Los Angeles Commission on Assaults Against Women
Men Against Sexual Assault (MASA) (U. Rochester)
MINCAVA Electronic Clearinghouse (Minnesota Center Against Violence and Abuse)
MS – MaleSurvivor
No Escape: Male Rape in US Prisons (Human Rights Watch)
No Safe Place: Violence Against Women (PBS Online)
Office on Violence Against Women (US Department of Justice)
Prison Rape and Sex (Barbara Kestler, Prisoners.com)
Rainbow Male Survivors Network
Rape101.com – Resources and Education for Stopping Rape
Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network / National Sexual Assault Hotline
The Rape Crisis Center
Rape Recovery Center
Safe Horizon: Home Page
Santa Barbara Rape Crisis Center
Sexual Assault Resources
SFWAR: San Francisco Women Against Rape
SOAR: Speaking Out About Rape
Stop Prisoner Rape – SPR

Rape, Abuse, and Incest National Network (RAINN)
A toll-free, 24-hour-a-day, 7-day-a-week national hotline for victims of
sexual assault. Your call will be automatically routed to a rape crisis
center in your geographical area.
A non-profit information and referral resource.
World Wide Web Virtual Library: Men and Rape, Sexual AbuseA hypertext page with links to listings of information and resources for
male survivors of rape or sexual abuse.

A Usenet newsgroup for survivors of incest and other forms of sexual abuse.
A Usenet newsgroup for partners of abuse survivors.


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The 9 to 5 guide to combating sexual harassment.
New York: John Wiley & Sons, 1992.

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Sexual exploitation of patients by health professionals.
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Calhoun, Karen S. and Atkeson, Beverly M. (1991).
Treatment of rape victims: Facilitating psychosocial adjustment.
New York: Pergamon.

Grossman, Rochel with Sutherland, Joan. (Eds.). (1982).
Surviving sexual assault.
New York: Congdon & Weed.

Hampton, Harriette L. (1995).
Care of the woman who has been raped.
New England Journal of Medicine, 332, 234-237.

Herman, Judith Lewis. (1992).
Trauma and recovery.
New York: Basic Books.

Holzman, C. G. (in press).
Counseling adult women rape survivors: Issues of race, ethnicity, and class. Women and Therapy.

Isely, Paul J. (1991).
Adult male sexual assault in the community: A literature review and group treatment model.

In Ann Wolbert Burgess (Ed.),
Rape and sexual assault III: A research handbook (pp. 161-178).
New York: Garland.

Orzek, A. M. (1988).
The lesbian victim of sexual assault: Special considerations for the mental health professional.
Women and Therapy, 1988, 8, 107-117.

Warshaw, Robin. (1994).
I never called it rape: The MS report on recognizing, fighting, and surviving date and acquaintance rape.
New York: Harper Collins.

About the Author:

Clare G. Holzman, Ph. D. is a clinical psychologist in private practice in New York City. She has worked as a rape crisis counselor and specializes in psychotherapy with survivors of rape and childhood sexual abuse.

Originally published 4/15/98
Revised 2/02/09 by Marlene M. Maheu, Ph.D.

Find Dr. Maheu here: http://www.selfgrowth.com/experts/marlene_maheu.html

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