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Understanding Factors that Boost Confidence in Resisting Sexual Assault Against Women

Updated: Jan 2

Correlates of College Women's Sexual Assault Resistance Self-Efficacy


Sexual assault is a pervasive issue that affects countless individuals worldwide. It is essential to understand the factors that contribute to women's confidence in fighting back against sexual assault.

Understanding Factors that Boost Confidence in Resisting Sexual Assault Against Women
Understanding Factors that Boost Confidence in Resisting Sexual Assault Against Women

In recent years, the statistics on sexual assault against women have been alarming. According to the World Health Organization, it is estimated that globally, about 1 in 3 women (30%) have experienced physical and/or sexual violence in their lifetime, usually perpetrated by an intimate partner.


In the United States, the National Intimate Partner and Sexual Violence Survey (NISVS) found that 1 in 5 women (21.3%) have experienced completed or attempted rape during their lifetime. The same study revealed that 43.6% of women experienced some form of sexual violence other than rape in their lifetime.


In Canada, a 2018 report by Statistics Canada showed that 636,000 women experienced sexual assault in a single year, and 1 in 3 women (33%) have experienced sexual assault in their lifetime.


These numbers are just the tip of the iceberg, as many cases of sexual assault go unreported. The reasons for underreporting include fear of retaliation, shame, or not being believed. It is important to raise awareness of these issues and work towards creating a safer world for women.


Recent studies suggest that actively resisting an attacker can decrease the severity and completion of a sexual assault. However, little is known about the factors that contribute to women's self-efficacy in resisting unwanted sexual advances. In this article, we will explore the findings of a study that examined the correlates of college women's self-efficacy in resisting unwanted sexual advances.


The Study and Its Findings

The study, which involved 650 college women, aimed to identify the factors that contribute to women's confidence in fighting back against sexual assault. The results showed that several factors were associated with increased sexual resistance self-efficacy. These factors include:


Fewer psychological barriers to resistance: Women who had fewer psychological barriers to resistance, such as fear of being blamed or not being believed, were more confident in their ability to fight back against sexual assault.


Greater sexual communication: Women who engaged in open and honest communication about sexual matters with their partners were more likely to have confidence in their ability to resist unwanted sexual advances.


Increased use of dating self-protective behaviors: Women who practiced self-protective behaviors while dating, such as meeting in public places and letting friends know their whereabouts, were more confident in their ability to resist sexual assault.


Greater sexual assertiveness: Women who were more assertive in expressing their sexual desires and boundaries were more confident in their ability to resist unwanted sexual advances.


Implications and Conclusion

These findings underscore the importance of developing sexual assault prevention programs that focus on increasing women's confidence in fighting back. Such programs should aim to address the psychological barriers that prevent women from resisting sexual assault and promote open communication about sexual matters.


Additionally, these programs should encourage women to practice self-protective behaviors while dating and to develop greater sexual assertiveness.


By empowering women to resist unwanted sexual advances, we can work towards reducing the occurrence and severity of sexual assault. It is crucial that we continue to study and understand the factors that contribute to women's confidence in fighting back against sexual assault, as this knowledge is essential in developing effective prevention strategies.


References

Correlates of College Women's Sexual Assault Resistance Self-Efficacy


Violence Prevention and Self Defense Resources

The goal of the Center for Violence Prevention and Self Defense is to stop violence by educating at-risk people and empower them with the skills needed to protect themselves both online and live training. CVPSD's live training is available to people of all ages.


Through workshops and seminars we educate participants about violence prevention and guide them on assessing risk factors while establishing boundaries in relationships. Additionally practical self defense classes equip people with hands on skills and effective strategies to prevent and intervene in cases of assault.

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