16 Days of Activism Against Gender Violence 2013 – From 25 November, the International Day of Elimination of Violence against Women, to 10 December, International Human Rights Day
16 Days of Activism against Gender Violence is an international campaign that began in 1991. From 25 November, the International Day of Elimination of Violence against Women, to 10 December, International Human Rights Day, the campaign calls on individuals and groups around the world to act to end all forms of violence against women and girls.
- Worldwide, up to 50% of sexual assaults are committed against girls under the age of 16.
- Globally, 603 million women live in countries where domestic violence is not yet considered a crime.
- Up to 70% of women in the world report having experienced physical and/or sexual violence at some point in their lifetime.
- Over 60 million girls worldwide are child brides, married before the age of 18.
- Violence against women is a global scandal, a human rights violation, and happening everywhere!
More information is located at:
The following are a few things that I have found from my researching on the internet:
My favorite Sibling Sexual Abuse Quote:
Trust is essential in families, but a sibling who has been given a lot of responsibility and power may abuse that trust. Sibling sexual abuse often takes place when parents fail to pay attention to the trust that they have placed in one of their children.
This is one of my favorite links about sibling sexual abuse:
Typical Characteristics of Sibling Sexual Abuse
Below is what I have noticed in research that I have reviewed on sibling sexual abuse. No survivor necessarily fits each and every category but you may find some similarities.
The abuser usually won the trust, and then violated that trust in order to commit the abuse.
Misuse of power and authority by the abusing sibling
Abuse is often Non-Concentual
Sibling sexual abuse usually accompanies emotional and physical abuse.
The survivor tends to feel powerless, ashamed, and betrayed
Sibling Sexual Abuse is often “Hands-On Abuse”
Sibling incest is of at least equal seriousness as Father–daughter incest
Sibling abuse often includes the most serious and intrusive acts.
The abuser is more likely to have penetrated the victim
The abuse is more likely to go underreported and ignored
The abuser held the survivor in terror and silence.
The abuser often commits more acts of abuse over a longer period of time.
The survivor was more readily available for a longer period of time to the abusing sibling.
Offenders normally have little to no consequences because they are protected by family secrecy.
Provide poor supervision and little structure
Tend to have had a history of domestic violence and physical abuse
Secrets – Discourage open communication
Impact of disclosure (parents or sibling response)
Deny the allegations of abuse
Acknowledge the abuse, but blame and/or punish the victim
Acknowledge the abuse, but fail to protect the victim and stop the abuse
When abuse is disclosed, divide into teams, (victim versus offender) which compete for power resources, and support
Family relationships are sometimes disrupted or severed
In the end, problematic families can leave the survivor feeling unprotected, helpless, rejected, and further blamed.
Family and Society tend to ignore or minimize the sibling sexual abuse
Impact of sibling sexual abuse
Consequences of sibling abuse as equally serious as father–daughter abuse.
With instances of depression, substance abuse, eating disorders, suicidal feelings, compulsive spending, suicidal feelings and disruptive and troublesome flashbacks (etc).
This is a photo of me and my brother in December of 1977. I was 10 years old and in the 5th grade while my brother is 18 years old and in the 12 grade. My mother took this photo of me angry at my brother because he would not get off my bed and get out of my bedroom.
This was a dreadful scene that took place on a regular basis in my childhood home that I forgot about. My brother would station himself on my bed and then I would begin screaming in terror at him to “GET OFF MY BED AND GET OUT OF MY ROOM!!!” while he covers his face laughing at me. I would get in trouble for screaming like this at my brother by my mother.
My mother actually took this photo with the intent that someday I would look back at the whole scene and realize how silly I was to be screaming like this because my brother was “harmlessly” laying on my bed and not leaving. Like this was all just “normal” sibling rivalry. I realize now there was nothing normal about what was going on in my childhood home. I can’t believe my mother actually took a photo of this scene.
As you can tell, I was very much a little girl in the photo. It was Christmas time and I have a bow stuck to the top of my head. I appear to be biting my lip as I look at my mother taking the photo. I remember her laughing at me too and saying something like “Why are you over reacting like this?” My mother was not aware (or did not want to be aware) that I was raped and still being sexually abused by the THING laying on my bed snickering at me.
Since I was normally raped in the basement or on the living room floor, my room was my sanctuary and the one place I frequently sought solitude and peace from the chaos in my childhood home. I preferred to be alone and had little trouble entertaining myself with my stuff animals, my radio, my books, and drawing or writing. I could spend hours here and hated it when I was summoned to spend time outside my room.
It occurred to me that I made an error in my story below. I thought my rapist-brother moved out during my 5th grade year. After looking at photos, I have come to realize that he actually moved out during my 6th grade year. It is like I lost an entire year of my life that I forgot about because there seemed to be so much chaos going on all the time. And looking at my 5th grade report card my grades still went from Fs to Cs (except for science … I still had an F in science) … I think I got my grades up mainly because I was afraid my Father was going to “knock me for a loop” as he use to say. I got an F in science and I turned around and got a bachelor’s degree in Biology (Go figure!). My rapist brother was definitely working more hours with school and he also started having girl friends so he left me alone more and the rapes were not happening like they once were. He was also using more drugs than he ever did before and was getting into trouble at school with drugs and trouble with the police. I will rewrite a few things in my article below so it is more accurate. My plan is to send it to my rapist-brother but I would like it to have accuracy because I have been accused of exaggerating about all these things most of my life. Instead of my childhood family focusing on the facts that I was raped once so badly that I had to go to the ER (which they all remember) and the fact that the rapes continued (which none of them dispute), they prefer to look for small gaps in my story so they can say “Ah Ha!” you got that information wrong. Bah!!!!!
My virginity was raped from me at the age of 7 in a very bloody and malicious way. A 2nd grade girl forcefully RAPED by her 9th grade brother. My father carried me into the ER with no idea how his daughter was injured in such a delicate area of her body in such an intrusively bloody manner. Since I was 7 years old, I was unable to make the connection, at that time, that this was all inflicted upon me by my cruel thoughtless horror of a human THING that was supposed to be my brother. Because of the negligence of the ER staff and my parents, this sexual violence continued for 5 more years by this rapist-brother until he left the home to join the Marines.
When I was finally brought to see my own pediatrician 7 months later after the ER visit, I had a urinary tract infection (UTI), unexplained migraines, stomach aches, and emotional turmoil that my physician treated with Gantrisin (for the UTI) and Phenobarbital (for everything else?). There were also bruises noted by my mother up and down my legs that could not be explained at the time but now I realize came from being forcefully held down while I was raped. The physician took my mother’s word that this was all related to stress at school. So the rape and abuse continued by my 2nd oldest rapist-brother while my parents failed to see what was happening to their daughter due to their own ongoing mental health and relationship problems. My parents failed to pay attention to the trust they placed in one of their older children to be in charge of the youngest child and this son made a conscious decision to betray his parents’ trust and also the trust of his little sister in order to fulfill his own selfish malicious desires. What he did to me was not sex … RAPE is NOT SEX … it was physical, mental, and spiritual torture! What he did to me impacted every area of my life and every relationship I have, have had, or will have. This rapist told me in a letter as a response to his vicious crimes, “It’s not like I put a gun to your head” which is a further slap in the face to a young 21 year old girl trying to cope with the horrors inflicted upon her by her older brother. He did not need a gun! The size, power, and control he had over me were all the weapons he needed.
My oldest brother (by 9 years) did participate in “hands-off” sexual abuse up until he witnessed my 2nd oldest rapist-brother (by 7 ½ years) take my virginity. After that, my oldest brother never participated in sexually abusing me ever again and has fully admitted all his wrongs to me and tearfully begged for my forgiveness numerous times with no prompting from myself, no excuses, no expectations or demands of me, and has shown me full remorse (and he never touched me). On the other hand, this rapist-brother has done nothing close to any of this. No compassion, no remorse, no admission of his wrongs, numerous excuses, such as, “I was young” or “I was on drugs” … guess what? I know numerous big brothers with a younger sister and many of them also did drugs in their youth and NONE (Zero) of them can say that they raped the virginity from their little sister so these statements are nothing more than lame excuses! Also no attempt has been made to make any type of financial amends while I am left with ongoing night terrors and PTSD … the same severity of PTSD that would be observed in combat veterans (something I think a Marine would be able to relate to).
This rapist-brother tells other people that I was a spoiled child and got everything I wanted. Are spoiled children raped over a period of years? Is rape something a child wants? It would come to reason, if an older brother repeatedly rapes a little girl who is his sister and is never held accountable for his crimes and is further protected by family secrecy, then it would stand to reason that this rapist is really the spoiled child in the family.
Judith Herman, M.D., wrote in her groundbreaking book “Trauma & Recovery”, “repeated trauma in adult life erodes the structure of the personality already formed, but repeated trauma in childhood forms and deforms the personality.”
I want nothing to do with any rapist and I definitely want nothing to do with my own horror of a human THING rapist-brother! For the majority of my life of I have struggled with all of these truths and ongoing PTSD and I am still in current therapy for the treatment of PTSD. The place I get treatment for my PTSD is the same place combat veterans seek out services for PTSD. He should pay for my all my therapy, past and present, since he raped me! I have spent thousands of dollars for my therapy over the last 25 years.
This rapist not only brought great harm to me but his harm extended further to his own children. So much so, that his own children found it necessary to emancipate as teenagers to get away from this poor excuse of a father.
I am officially giving retired Marine Gunnery Sgt. [name removed but should be included to protect innocent children and bring about full accountability] a dishonorable discharge from being my brother!
First Coast News
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — It is still one of society’s greatest taboo but because no wants to talk about it, doesn’t stop sibling sexual abuse. According to the Pandora Project studies have shown that between 2% and 4% of people have been sexually victimized by a sibling.
“What is a father to do?” asked Reggie Thomas.
Thomas, 36, is a divorced father who is worried about his two children now living with their mother.
“I did all the right things I call JSO I took my child to the hospital,” he said.
Earlier this year Thomas made an ugly discovery. Court records show his children’s older half-brother, a 15 year old, was charged with sexually abusing his younger siblings. Thomas’ two children are eight and nine years of age.
“My daughter said this was going on for three years straight,” he said.
The State Attorney’s office prosecuted the teenager.
Thomas said he was placed in the Juvenile facility for 30 days.
The convicted offender is out and Thomas he’s supposed to be living with his grandparent but Thomas said the teenager has been in contact with his siblings, his victims.
“He should have no contact,” said Thomas, “none at all.”
Thomas sits in his Southside apartment, worried if is son and daughter are safe in their mother’s home.
“To hear these things come out of your daughters mouth is the worse thing you can hear,” he said.
Under state law child abuse must be reported to the Department of Children and Families.
“We can look into the possibility of neglect regarding the person who has had custody of the children,” said John Harrell, “whether she’s keeping the teenager away from these children.”
However, there are limits as to what DCF can do if it involves sibling abuse.
“We are limited if he’s not a parent, a caregiver and he’s over the age of twelve,” said Harrell, “then it becomes a law enforcement issue.”
Thomas is asking the State’s Attorney for an injunction to keep the half brother away from his children. SAO spokeswoman Jackie Barnard declined comment because minors are involved.
“It is hard. They’re all my children,” said Ms. Campbell.
Campbell is the children mother.
“The 15 year old stays with his grandmother, he does not stay in my home,” she said.
Thomas said his children are now in therapy, but for him it doesn’t ease the pain.
First for you: How to prevent sibling abuse in your family?
-Talk with your children each day about what they’ve done or felt that day, both positive and negative.
-If there’s a babysitter talk about what they did with the babysitter.
-Also be willing to talk with them about their body and sexuality,of course at the appropriate age.
Must Read Article posted in The Atlantic:
People are rightly horrified by abuse scandals at Penn State and in the Catholic church. But what about children who are molested by their own family members?
Last year offered plenty of moments to have a sustained national conversation about child sexual abuse: the Jerry Sandusky verdict, the BBC’s Jimmy Savile, Horace Mann’s faculty members, and a slew of slightly less publicized incidents. President Obama missed the opportunity to put this issue on his second-term agenda in his inaugural speech.
Child sexual abuse impacts more Americans annually than cancer, AIDS, gun violence, LGBT inequality, and the mortgage crisis combined—subjects that Obama did cover.
Had he mentioned this issue, he would have been the first president to acknowledge the abuse that occurs in the institution that predates all others: the family. Incest was the first form of institutional abuse, and it remains by far the most widespread.
Here are some statistics that should be familiar to us all, but aren’t, either because they’re too mind-boggling to be absorbed easily, or because they’re not publicized enough. One in three-to-four girls, and one in five-to-seven boys are sexually abused before they turn 18, an overwhelming incidence of which happens within the family. These statistics are well known among industry professionals, who are often quick to add, “and this is a notoriously underreported crime.”
Incest is a subject that makes people recoil. The word alone causes many to squirm, and it’s telling that of all of the individual and groups of perpetrators who’ve made national headlines to date, virtually none have been related to their victims. They’ve been trusted or fatherly figures (some in a more literal sense than others) from institutions close to home, but not actual fathers, step-fathers, uncles, grandfathers, brothers, or cousins (or mothers and female relatives, for that matter). While all abuse is traumatizing, people outside of a child’s home and family—the Sanduskys, the teachers and the priests—account for far fewer cases of child sexual abuse.
To answer the questions always following such scandals—why did the victims remain silent for so long, how and why were the offending adults protected, why weren’t the police involved, how could a whole community be in such denial?—one need only realize that these institutions are mirroring the long-established patterns and responses to sexual abuse within the family. Which are: Deal with it internally instead of seeking legal justice and protection; keep kids quiet while adults remain protected and free to abuse again.
Intentionally or not, children are protecting adults, many for their entire lives. Millions of Americans, of both sexes, choke down food at family dinners, year after year, while seated at the same table as the people who violated them. Mothers and other family members are often complicit, grown-ups playing pretend because they’re more invested in the preservation of the family (and, often, the family’s finances) than the psychological, emotional, and physical well-being of the abused.
So why is incest still relegated to the hushed, shadowy outskirts of public and personal discussion, particularly given how few subjects today remain too controversial or taboo to discuss? Perhaps it’s because however devastating sexual molestation by a trusted figure is, it’s still more palatable than the thought of being raped by one’s own flesh and blood. Or is it?
Consider how the clergy abuse shook Catholics to their core, causing internal division and international disenchantment with a religion that was once the bedrock of entire nations. Consider the fallout from Sandusky’s actions and Penn State’s cover-up, both for students and football. Consider how distressing it is for Brits to now come to terms with the fact that the man they watched every night on TV in their living rooms was routinely raping kids just before going on air.
Given the prevalence of incest, and that the family is the basic unit upon which society rests, imagine what would happen if every kid currently being abused—and every adult who was abused but stayed silent—came out of the woodwork, insisted on justice, and saw that justice meted out. The very fabric of society would be torn. Everyone would be affected, personally and professionally, as family members, friends, colleagues, and public officials suddenly found themselves on trial, removed from their homes, in jail, on probation, or unable to live and work in proximity to children; society would be fundamentally changed, certainly halted for a time, on federal, state, local, and family levels. Consciously and unconsciously, collectively and individually, accepting and dealing with the full depth and scope of incest is not something society is prepared to do.
In fact society has already unraveled; the general public just hasn’t realized it yet. Ninety-five percent of teen prostitutes and at least one-third of female prisoners were abused as kids. Sexually abused youth are twice as likely to be arrested for a violent offense as adults, are at twice the risk for lifelong mental health issues, and are twice as likely to attempt or commit teen suicide. The list goes on. Incest is the single biggest commonality between drug and alcohol addiction, mental illness, teenage and adult prostitution, criminal activity, and eating disorders. Abused youths don’t go quietly into the night. They grow up—and 18 isn’t a restart button.
How can the United States possibly realize its full potential when close to a third of the population has experienced psychic and/or physical trauma during the years they’re developing neurologically and emotionally—forming their very identity, beliefs, and social patterns? Incest is a national nightmare, yet it doesn’t have people outraged, horrified, and mobilized as they were following Katrina, Columbine, or 9/11.
A combination of willed ignorance, unconscious fears, and naivete have resulted in our failure to acknowledge this situation’s full scope, but we can only claim ignorance for so long. Please reread the statistics in this post, share them with people you know, and realize that each and every one of us needs to pressure the government, schools, and other systems to prioritize this issue. Let’s make this the last inaugural address in which incest and child sexual abuse are omitted, because the way things are now, adults are living in a fantasy land while children are forced to slay the real-life demons.
Click the following link to read more: http://www.theatlantic.com/national/archive/2013/01/america-has-an-incest-problem/272459/