Effects of Military Sexual Assault

The military’s rape percentage has gone up to at an alarming rate of 88 percent since 2007. Many victims in the military have been scared and frightened by the people that have done them so wrong and left them their feeling unwanted. People in the military are just as human as civilians in the real world. They deserve the same justice that someone else can get but since they are in the military, they are expected to just deal with it and live life on with no regrets. In the military people are getting assaulted sexually and as a result having severe issues with no justice.

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Women and men who are assaulted in the military do not receive any justice because they are never heard of when they try to speak about it because since they are in the military personal expect them to be strong. Men are more spoken upon in the court room rather than women. “Many who end up sideways of the law as defendants in the veterans court are men.” (Moore). The victims who are assaulted are usually never compensated to deal with their issues if they are still trying to cope with it. Men are less expected to come out about it because they think they will lose their masculinity. While with some females its more harmful because they are more emotionally driven to people, they have sex with or get taken advantage of.

Military personnel that are victims of sexual assault can lead them to be psychologically disorder. This disorder not only effects them mentally, but also impacts them socially which can cause them having issues in the future. Issues such as flashbacks, depression, post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), self-harm, and dissociation are all ways that sexual assault victims deal with if not cared or getting justice for what has happened. It is something that is never forgotten because of the traumatic experience it causes. With flashbacks, victims are disconnected with society because it is setting them back from facing true reality. The only way they cannot suffer from flashbacks is by recognizing things that make them feel safe. Sometimes this is hard because they suffer from PTSD. This is a disorder that effects one’s anxiety by reexperiencing events that previously happened to them. Sometimes people do not enjoy doing activity’s that they used to do because of this disorder. If not able to be treated, victims look to harming themselves because it’s the only thing to hide the pain they suffer. Self-harm is when people inflict physical harm on themselves, usually in private and without suicidal intentions. Some common ways self-harm is approached are biting, burning, cutting, hitting their body, pulling out hair, and scratching skin. Not only does this show someone’s pain but it also shows how they been affected by serious trauma. This could lead to medical problems, including sleeping and eating disorders.

Throughout the United States more stories of sexual assault result in the way one lives their daily life. Many different eating disorders including anorexia, binge eating disorder, and bulimia are ways that people try to forget about their feelings. Sexual assault can change how a victim views or perceives themselves. Eating disorders typically cause someone to lose a substantial amount of weight. This starts to affect their physical health. Sleeping disorders also change the restoration of one’s physical and mental health. Some sleeping disorders include insomnia, nightmares, and sleep terrors. In order too fully “charge” someone’s body they must get at least 8 hours of sleep. Not getting enough sleep can affect your overall health and sometimes can lead to such conditions: obesity, heart disease, high blood pressure, and diabetes. Not only does this trauma lead to issues coping with society, but it also changes the health of one. Justice is one thing that can help people socially adjust to society. This may not take away the pain of the physical health disorders, but it does allow people seek more help and be vocal about their issues.

If only people knew the pain and agony that victims of sexual assault experience and how it is not easily treated. The simplest way that it could be treated from the painful event is by them not being as overlooked as they are. This is not only an issue caused by the individuals in the justice system, but it is also caused by individuals who suffer from the assault. If the people spoke out on these events more, they could get more help. Not only was a crime committed, but someone’s life had been changed forever.

In 1988 the department of defense conducted its first survey on sexual harassment in the military (Koons). Leading to, in 1991, the reported amount of assaults included 83 women and 7 men but only 50 perpetrators where fined or disciplined. Many stories are unheard of because it is not advocated through social media or any type of broadcast to the United States. Not showing people what truly happens can make the victims feel useless to the world which all leads back to the mental and physical problems they deal with.

In conclusion, victims of sexual assault while either serving or veterans of the military deserve justice. They go through a lot of emotional and physical trauma that can be prevented when taken with action. People of the United States need to listen to this serious problem because not only do people feel threatened by the problem, but the people threated are the ones protecting the United States.

Work Citied

Draper, Robert. “The Military’s Rough Justice on Sexual Assault.” The New York Times

Magazine, 26 Nov. 2014, https://www.nytimes.com/2014/11/30/magazine/the-militarys-rough-justice-on-sexual-assault.html

Lantigua-Williams, Juleyka. “Taking Military Sexual Trauma Seriously.” The Atlantic, 13 Sep. 2016, https://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2016/09/women-vets-and-mst/498866/

Hennigan, W.J. “Sexual Assault Reports in the Military Rose for the 7th Year in a Row.” Time, 30 April 2018, https://time.com/5260183/military-sexual-assault-rape-reports/

Koons, Jennifer. “”Sexual Assault in the Military.”” CQ Researcher, 9 Aug. 2013, library.cqpress.com/cqresearcher/cqresrre2013080904 “Effects of Stress.” Rainn, Rainn, 2018,https://www.rainn.org/effects-sexual-violence

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Effects of Military Sexual Assault. (2019, Feb 20). Retrieved August 16, 2022 , from
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