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Plight of rape victims

by Joy Bankong

Rape according to Wikipedia can be defined as a type of s3xual assault involving s3xual intercourse or other forms of s3xual penetration carried out against a person without that person’s consent. It is basically just s3x you don’t agree to or that is against your will and can happen to male or female, children or adults.

Rape has been an issue for a while now and not much has been done about it. The disheartening part is that many victims deliberately refuse to report the incident for fear of stigmatization. Meanwhile, some rape cases reported to law enforcement agencies hardly get immediate convictions in the court.

Research has shown that more than a third of Nigerian women have been subjected to some kind of s3xual assault, and one in 10 raped, according to the Mums net social networking site. Barely a third of victims go to the police and another third tell no one at all, not even close friends.

A rape victim is likely to suffer physical and psychological trauma. Other feelings which rape victims commonly experience are hurt feeling and anger. The hurt stems from the inability to understand what would motivate someone to commit such an attack. It is common for victims to ask, “What did I do that would make him want to do that to me?” Anger about the personal violation is probably the healthiest reaction, because it turns the pain outward instead of inward, but it often takes time for a victim to acknowledge such feelings. Sometimes too, fear becomes a problem in the life of the victim; the victim becomes scared of their environment, their health, people around them and even their personal relationships generally.

There was recently a trending story on tweeter calling on victims of rape to speak out and name the rapists. The movement and the campaign, to some extent were successful as it encouraged women to speak up about boys or men who have raped them. A long list was compiled and posted with the names of the rapists and some of the men denied it even after more than one woman mentioned their names.

Rape victims should be shown more love and less of rejection and stigmatization. Many people don’t know what rape does to an individual. Victims feel dejected and think all hope is lost but a little love can go a long way in the life of a victim.

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