Indecent exposure or 'flashing'
About sexual violence
The term ‘sexual violence’ is an all-encompassing, non-legal term that refers to any sexual activity or act that happened without consent. It includes but is not limited to rape, sexual assault, sexual abuse and sexual harassment.
1 in 4
Women have been raped or sexually assaulted as an adult
1 in 2
Rapes against women are carried out by their partner or ex-partner
Of adults prosecuted for sexual offences are men
Who is affected by sexual violence?
Anyone can experience sexual violence and abuse.
It happens to people of all ages, backgrounds, cultures, sexualities, faiths and ethnicities. This includes children, older people, LGBT+ people and disabled people.
Research shows that the majority of victims and survivors of sexual violence are women and girls, and that most perpetrators are male. However, men and boys can also experience sexual violence.
If you would like to refer yourself for therapy at HERSANA you can do this through our online self-referral form or you can phone us.
Why does sexual violence happen?
Researchers have different ideas about why people perpetrate sexual violence.
But whatever the reason or motive, there is never any excuse or justification for sexual violence. Sexual abuse, rape and sexual assault are serious crimes. They cannot be explained away.
If you have been through any kind of sexual violence, please know that it was not your fault. It doesn’t matter how long ago it happened, where you were, what you were doing, what you were wearing or whether you were drunk or had taken drugs – you are in no way to blame.
Types of sexual violence
The term ‘sexual violence’ is an all-encompassing, non-legal term that refers to any sexual activity or act that happened without consent. It includes rape, sexual assault, sexual abuse and sexual harassment (to name just a few).
Not all cases of sexual abuse involve violence, cause physical injury or leave visible marks. Sexual abuse can cause severe distress, emotional harm and injuries which can't be seen – all of which can take a long time to recover from. This is why we use the terms ‘violence’ and 'abuse', and treat disclosures and experiences just as seriously.
Sexual violence can take many different forms, but one thing remains the same: it’s never the victim’s fault.
Click on the options below to learn about some of them.
Some examples include:
This is not a complete list!
We are working all the time to bring you more information. So, just because something isn't mentioned on this page doesn't mean it's not a form of sexual violence and abuse.
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