Myths About Sexual Violence


Sexual assault myths are stereotypical or false beliefs about sexual violence.


Why is it important to learn about sexual assault myths? Because these myths can cause people to disregard or minimize the experiences of survivors of sexual violence. They can also cause folks to blame the victim instead of the offender.


Understanding sexual assault myths can help us to support survivors.


For example, early understandings of sexual violence were limited to rape only -- most specifically, violent rape perpetrated by disturbed strangers. While that is sometimes the case, this example by no means represents the most common and pervasive situations of sexual violence occuring in Canada.  


From the 1970s to the present, advocates have reframed rape as an issue of power and control, and placed emphasis on perpetrator accountability. Educating ourselves about the realities of sexual violence has also shown that, in fact the majority of sexual violence is perpetrated by acquaintances or others known to the victim.  Read more:

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