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'Boys as victims' don't fit expectations
Posted By -NO AUTHOR- On 01/23/2007 @ 1:00 am In Front Page | Comments Disabled
WND has documented dozens of recent cases of women teachers assaulting underage male students, probably the least documented type of educator sexual misconduct even though almost no comprehensive statistics are kept on any category of such attacks.
The few experts on such conduct say that males can be assaulted and victimized as well as females, only for young boys society’s treatment is different.
Terri Miller, who runs Stop Educator Sexual Abuse, Misconduct and Exploitation, said she does hear from men who were victims of female teachers. One man was 53, and never had been able to establish a normal relationship since he was assaulted by a female teacher at age 12.
She said the second generation of crime even could be blamed on female assailants. “Because they are not able to report with the expectation they’re going to receive justice like a girl would … what ends up happening in many cases with boys [they] overcompensate and end up becoming domestically violent abusers, rapists – because of the fact a woman dominated them,” she said.
Steve Braveman, a therapist who has posted an article on the SESAME website, noted that about one in six of all American boys is molested by the time he reaches 18.
Since statistics are virtually unavailable, he noted, it’s not clear exactly who is molesting them every time, but he said the vast majority appear to have been victimized by someone they know. “Someone they trust very much. Someone in a position of authority.”
“So, if boys are being molested by all of these kinds of people, why doesn’t the public hear more about this? Part of the answer may lie in the fact than an estimated 50 percent of all molests, males and females combined, are never reported. It is also estimated that only 10 percent of molested boys ever make such reports. … Many of these unreported molestations of boys are suspected to be at the hands of a teacher, educator and/or other person in position of authority.”
He noted that boys, like girls, are threatened when they are assaulted, they have fears of not being believed, but there also are problems unique to their gender.
“Many believe that if they were molested by another male that they are now, or will become, homosexuals. Society tells boys that they should be ‘tough’ and solve their problems on their own. If the boy has an early sexual experience with an older woman they are told they are ‘lucky!’ How embarrassing for a male to admit he has molested …,” he said.
“The unwillingness of boys to report when they’ve been sexually victimized is even greater when the perpetrator is a teacher, educator and/or other person in authority,” he continued. “When one is victimized by a teacher, or other person in a position of authority, the sense of betrayal is greatly magnified.”
He wrote that teachers, like priests, principals and senators, are “trusted” individuals.
And “the vow of secrecy not to tell, not to report, is sealed if the child does speak up and is not believed,” he said. “It quite often takes an incredible amount of pain and failure for males sexually abused in these ways to speak up. Bouts of alcoholism, drug abuse, sexual acting out, sexual shutting down, divorces and financial ruin are common. When it gets to be too much some come forward,” he said.
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