• Kimberly Lizan Lorenz

See How to Heal from Sexual Assault

Updated: May 26

Have you ever been affected by sexual assault or know someone who has? In many cases, it can be traumatizing and demeaning to those who have been affected by it. It might feel like a dark pit, but as the saying goes, “When you hit bottom, the only place to go is up.” It is possible to come out the other side and be a survivor. But what does that mean?

What is Sexual Assault Exactly?

Sexual assault is defined as: A person using:

- force,

- threats, and/or

- influence

to enact an unwanted sexual activity with another person who is not able/not willing to give informed and legal consent.

To better understand this definition, let’s look at just a few examples:

  • A person not stopping sexual activity when their partner says no is sexual assault.

  • Unwanted touching or grabbing of your body by someone else is sexual assault.

  • Engaging in sexual intercourse with someone unable to give informed and legal consent (like a minor or those with a diminished mental capacity) is sexual assault.

  • Unwanted sexual activity like oral, penetration, anal, and forced masturbation is sexual assault.

These acts can occur once or several times over the span of years; it varies from case to case. However, all of these instances share a common theme. Sexual assault is the result of a perpetrator exerting their need to obtain power and control over someone else.

It is not anything that the victim has asked for and absolutely nothing that they deserved. Any act of sexual assault was not their fault.