Surviving sexual violence: Impact on survivors and families

Authors : Bhate-Deosthali, Padma; Rege, Sangeeta; Arora, Sanjida ; Avalaskar, Prachi; Chavan, Rajeeta; Bavadekar, Amruta

Published Year: 2018

Mumbai: CEHAT, ix, 141 p. ISBN: 978-81-89042-81-3

Counsellors: Chandrasekhar, Aarthi; Ayarkar, Sujata; Joshi, Chitra

There are no studies on the impact of sexual violence on survivors in India. It is essential to document the life experiences of survivors post rape as this would help in understanding the impact of the incident on their health, relationships, work and the challenges faced by them after reporting rape to the police or hospital.

Rape survivors are willing to speak as they feel that it will help not only others but also in their healing process. Research reveals that two-thirds of rape victims tell someone about their experiences at some point after the assault, and that they seek support more from informal social networks (family and friends) and less formal assistance (police, clergy and doctors). Survivors anticipated that formal social system processes or their personnel could cause them further psychological harm as they may disbelieve them, blame them or interrogate them. Many did not have faith that the system could help them. They felt that perhaps they should deal with it themselves.

This research is a first that brings to the fore the voices of survivors and their families that could transform the current response to sexual violence.

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Marathi and Hindi Publications