Unreal experience to someone is real to another. It is not fictional/illusion that violence sexually is a parasite ravaging the society especially the Minors; mostly feminine gender, and few masculine, no cultural bound, no ethnic discrimination.
The word “RAPE” is universal epedemic with Lessser action against it, there seems to be no lesser word to substitute it. It is an Abuse against the interest of the victim. It is not an event that only “kill” the Body, rather affects the Soul. Sexual violence is not only a violent crime, but it is also a serious health issue. It affects the bodies, minds, hearts, and souls.
The victim are crippled in their words, their survival and esteem is Abused, they lost Trust of every person, especially their perpetrator genres being equal (either Make or female), the question lingers on their heart, “Who is to be trust?” This might be the major reason why Female survivor didn’t felt comfortable to speak with the Author, or waving off attention from Him, those who had the courage to find another look at him were contributor to his well of knowledge which had led to this resourceful material.
Confine me to say, that this Book is a major for all who have been triggered to helping sexually abused or who are thriving to do. Suffice, it also a material every survivor can have their hands on and their heart dwelt for their healing process, the Author doesn’t provide the Unreal events, rather bundles of Experiences from field. Not statistical, Robert justifies that this rough experience can’t be forgotten, either at childhood or Adult stage, every person is vulnerable; anyone can be raped or sexually assaulted, regardless of gender, age, ethnicity, religion, socio-economic status or sexual orientation. This is true from infants to the elderly. Sexual violence is very detrimental. It is as well complex.
The Author aid in understanding why most survivor lost their courage to speak out the crime committed against them; “First, many survivors do not report because they fear they will not be believed. Second, it is extremely difficult to report a violent crime against someone that is known. Most survivors know their perpetrators, and the relationship between them makes reporting even harder than it might have been if the crime were perpetrated by a stranger.”
“Rape is really more about power and control and not about sex.”
This statement formed the basic knowledge of the Book “to the Survivor,” by Robert Uttario; His Passion to help heal the survivor drive him to be a volunteer to “The Healing Place” a company of people who Empathizes with those who are being sexually assault. He states how violence is not peculiar to ghettos or the streets, however, it exists in religion, in Prison among inmates (both Male and Female) which he states that is a severe problem that should be taken seriously.
The Author garnish the material with some potential effect of sexual violence, this includes: Shame, Guilt, Depression, Loss of Control, Vulnerability, Fear, Anger, Becoming suicidal or committing suicide etc, which is not rational but mostly happen.
One of the beautiful healing idea he shared is how Survivor can acquired coping skills against their traumatic situation. coping skills can be positive and negative, helpful and destructive. For example, healthy Coping skills can develop into strengths, such as doing well in school, in sports, at work, or being self-sufficient in a variety of different ways. Also, Unhealthy coping skills, such as substance abuse or self-mutilation can be self-defeating and fatal.
Exceptionally, the Author ordinarily don’t expose the violent aspect of the crime and all of the horrible aftermath. Financial Loss is another effect of being sexually Abused. The Author drive us into how it happened to Victims. Interestingly, Robert wasn’t biased with his course, rather he justices every Positions.
“The majority of perpetrators are men, but the majority of men are not perpetrators. To all the men out there who are reading this: We have a responsibility in this issue and we need more men getting involved to help out in some kind of way. I believe it is imperative for more males to become involved in rape crisis work because it helps women and men. Some women begin to trust men again when they see that not all men are monsters.” Cited Robert Uttaro, To The Survivor (2013).
The Author shared in his book a great deal of knowledge about sexual trauma and how it is being handled, citing from the Book, the Author express that sexual trauma effect is not restricted to the mentioned, it is “Suffering in the Soul” which makes it more easily to be remembered by Survivor, “A female survivor once said to me, “I suffer in my soul.” Another man once said to me, “You have no idea the anger I have in my soul.”
Further, he write and I quote; “The memory of a traumatic experience is not encoded in the same way as is a normal experience. The powerful neurochemicals that trigger the fight or flight response have far-reaching effects, including dramatic effects on the manner in which memories are encoded. Often, a traumatized person cannot generate the kind of narrative memory that we can normally muster for an important experience. Their memories are often fragmented, out of sequence, and filled with gaps. They may recall very specific details for particular aspects of the experience, and recall little or nothing for others. It is for this reason – the neurobiology of traumatic memory – that great care must be taken in interviewing trauma survivors.
The fact that a traumatized person recalls a detail which they earlier had not is not prima facie evidence of fabrication; it is the characteristic way in which these types of memories are stored and recalled. The fact that they can recall the texture of the rapist’s shirt, but cannot recall whether he was wearing a hat, is not evidence that something is being hidden; it is a product of how the brain encodes information during a trauma (Uttaro, 2003).”
Becca’s story is a pointer to the above, who was diagnosed with acute trauma based depression and suffered from the effects of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). “Sexual assault is not a theoretical thing. It is not some hypothetical conversation. It is something that happened. It is something that has happened to people we love and care about. It is not this thing that should be joked about like it’s inconsequential because it isn’t. It’s so underreported. Sexual assault is an epidemic. It is a crime that happens to a lot of people, but because of the shame around the sexual nature of the crime and because of how incredibly hard it is to come forward, that is why so many people do not come forward.” This what the transgender Corey, who is a Survivor shared with the world.
Moreso, Victim Blaming is another position which Uttaro give a lens to the society. He made if clear that Blaming the victims hurts more than the Action. Victim blaming ultimately leads to more confusion, pain, and problems as opposed to clarity, healing, and growth. This is why he must have opined that human beings fully don’t understand the powerful effects of sexual trauma given our limited knowledge as finite beings. Even medical professionals do not fully understand the powerful effects of sexual trauma. The brain is extremely intricate. As advanced as we are with our knowledge of the brain, we still know so little.(Pg 39).
Should MEGAN be blamed for been screwed by both her voice teacher and her Boyfriend? Should ALEXIS be blamed for being screwed by a trusted acquaintance and Friend? Should JIM be blamed for been assaulted by Priest? What About DON and CHRIS, both are Male and Survivor of sexual Violence.
“Hurt people hurt people.” This statement explains SHIRA’s story. Her case is technically mind blowing that gave another insight about the Perpetrators. Her story shows us that major of the Perpetrator are either Survivor or the Hurt who hurt. SHIRA’s case is explains that their also is “Marital Rape.” And Rape ordinarily don’t mean Penetration.
“The point is that my life, like the lives of so many survivors, is full of experiences like this; full of experiences that we weren’t even calling rape. Because it was fingers, not a penis. Because we were too drunk to consent. Because we didn’t scream. Because it wasn’t a man.
Because it doesn’t match that neat little checklist. It has taken decades for us to accept that you can be raped by a friend, that you can be raped by an intimate partner, that you can be raped by someone who isn’t male, that men can be raped.
There are people out there today who have woken up to someone penetrating them and don’t call it rape, because if you call it rape, then you are a Rape Victim, and no one wants to be a victim, especially of rape.” (Culled from SHIRA’s Story, Uttaro 2003).
The society blame the Victim for not calling for help or fight their Penetrators, but wouldn’t it be less Hurting if most penetrators are Strangers, than a relative. A lot of us have this grand idea of what we’re going to do when something like this happens. We think we’re going to scream or fight. Very few of us think we’ll just freeze – but that’s what many survivors do, and that’s what is happening.
“Sexual violence not only affects a survivor; it affects his or her loved ones as well.” This was true regarding Timothy’s case. Victims demands justices, but to everyone, especially the Victim, Justice is different, just as well growth, recovery and Healing through their Trauma. Forgiveness is one of the fundamental action to healing for every Survivor. A very bold act of this will lead to total liberty from the Past.
Summarily, this Book is not a religion Book, few Bible reference used are what heal some Survivor who had contributed, and which can be useful to another. This is not to show expertise from the Author, it is to Empathize with Victim of sexual Violence to know that there are People around them that cared much about their survival and healthy living from this traumatic events which with lost of Hope had lead to profiling suicide when the Victim could not speak out or felt none will believe them or listen.
The Author really shower his well of knowledge from experience as an expert to helping Survivor survives, and not ordinarily Hypothetical compilation. The Author highlights Ten important things that is needful to everyone in the society tackling the issue;
1. Survivors are not to blame. If you are to blame anyone, blame a person who chooses to rape.
2. Do not think only women and girls are raped and sexually assaulted. Men and boys are also raped and sexually assaulted.
3. If someone discloses to you, please believe and listen to him or her.
4. Do not blame a survivor because of the clothes he or she wears. The clothes someone wears are completely irrelevant in every single rape that occurs.
5. Do not blame a survivor when alcohol or drugs are involved; there are plenty of people who rape sober and who are raped sober.
6. Do not blame survivors for being raped when they hang out with “that person”. Many rapists are viewed as nice people.
7. Do not force survivors to do anything. They do not have to go to a hospital. They do not have to go to the police. They do not have to go to court. They can if they choose to. If they are looking for help, please provide them with resources and options, and be the bridge to those resources and options. Let them make the choice for themselves, but try to be that bridge.
8. Rape jokes hurt people. They can trigger survivors in re-experiencing horrific trauma.
9. Support survivors in what they need at the time.
10. Always understand that people can and do heal from sexual violence and other forms of violence as well. No matter how bleak things may seem, people can grow, get better, and heal in whatever way healing happens for them.
Such like “TO THE SURVIVOR” have no conclusion. Sexual Violence (Rape, Molest, Bisexuality, incest) is a global epidemic. It is not Ethnic bound. It happens everywhere, remote and developed area. It happens to people of every gender, age, ethnicity, religion, socio-economic status or sexual orientation. It is an evil crime that too many people unfortunately experience. It is a sick and twisted reality our world continues to face. I pose this question to all of us: What will we do about it?
It is Imperative for the society to take adequate measure if this can not be completely eradicate, is it possible? What about the Mentally derailed who are being Rape? Evil will continue exist in this world, and Violence of any kind is one of such. If someone therefore, ever discloses that he or she has been raped or sexually assaulted. Robert employ us that we “B.L.E.S.S.” that person. HOW?
Believe: Believe that person if they disclose. Listen:
Listen to that person when they need to talk, cry, or scream.
Empathy: Empathize with that person as best you can.
Safety: Ensure that person’s physical, emotional, mental and spiritual safety.
Support: Support that person in whatever they need at the time.
Listen to the Author’s remark; Sexual violence is extremely complicated and hard to deal with, but we can do more, and I believe we need to do more. I believe sexual violence is one of the worst crimes our world will continue to face. Will we take the issue of sexual violence more seriously or will we not? If we take the issue of sexual violence more seriously, how many ways will the world change for the better? If we don’t take the issue of sexual violence more seriously, how many ways will the world change for the worse? The choice is ours. What will we choose?
To the Survivor_Robert Uttaro, 2003
The 237 pages is fully dedicated to Survivors out their in global World. Questions rising daily, Government debates, Activists want all rights equal, Therapists want make it possible, What? The issue this 22chapter discussed, that the pages brighten become a Past, rather this is deviation from what the society thinks it is.
Rape by this Author is not the gratification for sex, which has come to stay as the world Epidemic, without age boundary, Ethnics etc. This resourceful material is unique to this day, to the Victim/Survivor and many others. “To the Survivor” give a comprehensive knowledge of the What, Why, Where, Who and How RAPE is?
I therefore, recommend it readable for ALL, because it give Worth more than its Price.
Opeyemi Durotoye, 2020.