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Flashcards in Sexual Violence Deck (26)
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What is trauma?

  • An unexpected event which is considered to be outside the normal experience of a person in his/her lifetime
  • Trauma occurs when a person is unable to determine what may happen


What is Sexual Violence?

  • Any act (verbal and/or physical) which violates a person’s trust and/or safety and is sexual in nature
  • Use of power, control, force, status, intimidation, coercion, threat, physical presence, substances, technology, among other efforts to attempt or perpetrate sexual violence 


What are 3 forms of Sexual Violence?

  • Sexual Assault
  • Sexual Abuse
  • Sexual Exploitation


Unwanted sexual contact ranging from fondling to penetration
Sex is used as a weapon of violence 

Sexual Assault 


Involves use of psychological pressure to initiate sexual contact & may include repeated sexual assault w/i the context of an established relationship 

Sexual Abuse


Involves practices by which a person, usually an adult, achieves sexual gratification, financial gain or advancement through the abuse or exploitation of another’s sexuality by thwarting basic human rights to dignity, equality, autonomy & physical and mental well-being 

Sexual Exploitation


What are some words used to describe sexual violence?

  • Rape
  • Incest
  • Child sexual assault
  • Ritual abuse
  • Date/acquaintance rape
  • Intimate partner rape
  • Exploitation
  • Pornography
  • Drug date
  • Unwanted sexual contact
  • Sexual harassment
  • Exposure
  • Voyeurism
  • Gang rape
  • Human Trafficking
  • Mail order brides
  • Child prostitution
  • Others?? 


Legal tenets regarding sexual violence are based on the premise that sexual violence is...

  • Non-consensual
  • Involves force or coercion
  • Offense includes sexual elements 


_______ is defined by one’s ability to agree to an action or behavior 



What is the most current definition of rape?

“penetration, no matter how slight, of the vagina or anus w/ any body part of object, or oral penetration by a sex organ of another person, w/o the consent of the victim” (2013)


___ in ___ girls & ___ in ___ boys will be sexually assaulted before they turn 18

1 in 3 girls & 1 in 6 boys will be sexually assaulted before they turn 18


What are the differences between Stranger & Non-Stranger Sexual Violence?

  • Stranger Sexual Violence
    • assailant appears out of nowhere
    • forces self into situation or environment
    • selects anonymous victim
    • seeks to remain unknown & unidentified to victim
    • more reported than other forms of sexual violence & perceived to be more accepted & believed by community 
  • Non-Stranger Sexual Violence 
    • crime of confidence & betrayal of trust
    • use of deceit, manipulation & secrecy to gain trust
    • assailant may know the victim & use existing relationship to afford opportunity for harm
    • assailant may select victim, engender connection & create relationship through boundary violations 


The Brain

  • Neocortex
  • Limbic
  • Brainstem

  • Neocortex – human/thinking brain
  • Limbic – mammalian/emotional brain
  • Brainstem – reptilian/primitive, vital brain 


What is the typical Trauma Response?

  • Flight – run away
  • Fight – strike back
  • Freeze – don’t move 


What are some examples of...

  • Trauma Reactions
  • Post-Assault Trauma Reactions

  • Trauma Reactions
    • Loss of control
    • Attempt to regain control & personal safety
    • Perception or belief that individual is unable to defend or care for oneself
    • Individuals reassert control by using coping strategies & problem solving skills based on previous experiences
  • Post-Assault Trauma Reactions
    • Exist to allow an individual to cope w/ the experience
    • May or may not be healthy strategies
    • Are based upon known or learned skills 


How is psychological trauma a neurobiological injury?

  • Impacts the limbic system yielding reduced hippocampal & amygdalar volume
  • Alters the production of stress hormones (cortisol) & NTs (E, dopamine, serotonin)
  • Diminishes integration btwn L & R hemispheres 


Traumatic Memory is...

  • Sensory
  • Exists as fragments
  • Cannot be willfully retrieved
  • Is triggered by unforeseen cues in the environment 


What are the 3 types of stress?

  • Positive Stress
  • Tolerable Stress
  • Toxic Stress


What is Positive Stress?

  • Short-lived experiences causing minor physiological changes
  • Afford opportunity for skill building & self-soothing behaviors 


What is Tolerable Stress?

  • Relatively short-lived, more intense experiences
  • Impact can be overcome w/ support & caring but may lead to toxic stress w/o intervention


What is Toxic Stress?

  • Intense adverse experiences that may be sustained over a long period of time (wks, mo, yrs)
  • Stress response system gets activated for a prolonged period of time
  • This can lead to permanent changes in the development of the brain 


What are the 3 types of Trauma?

  • Acute Trauma
    • A single traumatic event that is limited in time
  • Chronic Trauma
    • The experience of multiple traumatic events
  • Complex Trauma
    • Both exposure to chronic trauma & the impact of such exposure on the individual 


Aftermath of Sexual Violence

  • Physical
  • Emotional/Psychological
  • Economic/Financial

  • Physical
    • injuries, fatigue, soreness, sleep disturbance, appetite changes, sexually transmitted infections, pregnancy 
  • Emotional/Psychological
    • continuum of trauma-related rxns, numbness, anxiety, fear, guilt, shame, loss of control, isolation, withdrawn, smiling, laughing, vulnerability, despair
  • Economic/Financial
    • income loss, medical treatment, counseling experience, evidence replacement, employment impact 


Longitudinal Impact of Sexual Violence

  • Emotional/Psychological
  • Physical
  • Interpersonal 

  • Emotional/Psychological
    • PTSD, depression, decreased self-esteem/identity, substance abuse/addictive behaviors, eating disorders, self-harm, suicidal ideation
  • Physical
    • chronic pain, STIs, long term disabilities, infertility
  • Interpersonal
    • difficulty w/ trust, relationships, sexual/physical contact 


What are the 8 Guiding Values of Trauma-Informed Care?

  • Promote safety
  • Understand the prevalence & impact of trauma
  • Communicate w/ compassion
  • Share power
  • Pursue the person’s strengths, choice & autonomy
  • Respect human rights
  • Provide holistic care
  • Embrace diversity 


What are some treatment options for patients?

  • Ask
  • Believe in the person
  • Offer acknowledgement & support w/i the context that you are able
  • Provide connections to other resources
  • Make a commitment