Thursday 25 June 2020
R.A.P..E: Rabidly Attacking Personal Ease
I was recently approached again by a group of young girls to have an interactive session with them. As a mother and a woman, any opportunity to share and talk to the younger generation is obliged.
This is my writeup I shared with them after which questions and answers were discussed. Kindly share and comment on what you think or can add to this... Enjoy
Hello Everyone! I hope you all are good?
Today, I want to discuss a societal issue that is not essentially seen as a ravaging problem- Rabidly Attacking Personal Ease ( RAPE). An acronym that explains the feeling and experience we go through when sexually pressured, molested, or violated at any stage of our lives. This acronym represents an action that is an attack on our physical, social, emotional, mental, and total well-being and security. I mean RAP.E.
Rape is not a new topic or issue for us. It's been around for ages. However, it has been chosen as a central and contemporary discussion because its prevalence has assumed a muster epidemic.
Rape has never been taken seriously as it has predominantly been viewed as a problem between the involved parties. It's never been looked at as a societal crime, rather it is seen as a source of shame and ridicule, in which the victim often bears more blame than the assailant. This should not be so, as it is indeed, an unpleasant social malice that needs to be addressed and given more awareness. We need to begin re-educating and conditioning ourselves to reject the distorted ideas and reasons surrounding rape. The most common one being that people get raped because of their physical appearance, behaviors, or attitudes. And we must also cancel out the stigma surrounding rape and its victims. Here are some things we need to understand...
It's NEVER the victim's fault! NEVER EVER! Casting blames and judgment on the person shouldn't be done because not only are you aggravating their trauma, but you’re also saying something they did gave the assailant the incentive to forcefully have their way sexually without her/his consent. It's wrong! Totally and absolutely wrong!!
Having said this, we need to foster neutral and safe spaces, where women and girls (the most vulnerable) feel safe to express themselves on sexual issues. Most societies do not support such things. If a person or child is going through a form of abuse in his/ her home they have no safe place to go. There are multiple active platforms, helplines, and organizations noted at the end of this write-up, that handle these matters.
Regardless of the organizations out in place to help these victims, remember "charity begins at home". Parents, educate your children from an early age on the topics and issues surrounding sex. There’s nothing to shy away from or be embarrassed about. Your children are never too young to learn about being safe and protecting themselves. Make sure they know you’re approachable and always ready to listen. You should always be there for them.
Don’t educate just your girls. Yes, females are the most victimized, but we should not ignore that any sex could be a potential victim. Educate your sons too. If you teach the boys how to fight, teach the girls too! Don’t let any Sex feel more entitled than the other, in regards to how they present themselves and interact with people. When you tell the girls about sexual predators, tell the boys as well. Simply because any person (boy or girl) can be sexually harassed or assaulted by any of the other sexes.
More importantly, you and your kids should learn the basics of self-defense ( karate and taekwondo), and have defense tools, such as a pocket knife, tasers or, pepper spray when out.
The reason a lot of rape victims suffer in silence is because of society. A lot of stigma surrounds the topic and so they suffer in silence due to the assumptions that :
1. They shouldn't be having sex (unmarried ones).
2. They can't deny sex to their spouses because their body belongs to the other (married ones).
They remain silent because they already feel condemned and guilty.
Sex has always been a controversial topic, especially in African countries. However, remember that only you are entitled to your body. You do not owe sex to anyone and no one has the power to claim your body. Regardless of whether you’re married or not, consent is paramount.
Whenever you have a social gathering, do not attend alone! Go in groups and watch out for each other. Don't leave your drinks unattended as that’s how you could get poisoned or drugged. It’s unfortunate that we have to bear all these precautions and rules to protect ourselves, but this is the world we live in.
Note that if you were/ are a victim and don’t carry out any of these preventive actions that you are still not to blame. Victims are not raped and should not be blamed for feeling safe in their environments or thinking that society is safe and conducive. No one has foresight for such circumstances. People are raped because there are evil people out there.
Another key point is knowing your location and address. Be financially secured in case you need to leave by yourself. You can do this by saving a percent of your earnings. This is not only good for situations in which you need to escape from immediately, but also a good life habit.
You're spiritual? Be prayerful and God will direct your steps. Listen to your guts! It never fails!
Rape can trigger and have many mental effects like Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). A common side effect of high-stress occurrences like rape. Prioritizing one’s mental health is very important. If you know a victim offer as much support as needed; this could go a long way in aiding the recovery process.
Know it was never your fault.
Don't be pressured to talk about it until you are ready and comfortable.
Don't be or feel guilty.
The person should be seen and treated the same way other criminals are handled.
There's no excuse whatsoever to carry out such a dirty act.
Please let’s educate and raise awareness about this heinous act, as this is one of the few ways we can protect ourselves and also normalize this matter and its victims so that they are able to come forward to a non- prejudiced society, tell their stories, and heal. Nobody deserves to be raped or carry the burdens of it.
Rabidly Attacking Personal Ease shouldn't be tolerated or encouraged. Rather, Resist Any Pressure Essentially should be uppermost in our minds and day to day living.
Thank you and God bless!
Sexual assault foundation in Nigeria:
THE MIRABEL CENTRE
Lagos State University Teaching Hospital (LASUTH), Ikeja, Lagos
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