Rape is one of the most despicable crimes against human dignity imaginable and, unfortunately, a major concern of contemporary society. Despite the attempts of nurses and therapists to enhance awareness on the subject matter, a range of people remain criminally unaware of what rape is, how it should be avoided and how rape victims should be treated. As a result of the specified incompetence, the victims of rape suffer greatly, being unable to recover in an environment that is far from being friendly towards them.
Specifically, the prejudice concerning the causes of rape, as well as the population, which remains under the threat of being subjected to rape, deserve to be mentioned as the focus of traditional misconceptions. As a result, many people, who have suffered abuse of the specified kind, refrain from consulting a specialist. Finally, the infamous prejudice regarding the behavioral patterns, which presumably trigger rape, should be listed among the myths to dispose of for providing successful treatment to the victims and relevant information to the rest of the population.
Introduction: Selecting the Topic
Though the issue of rape has been raised a number of times, with a number of articles, books, movies, PSAs, etc. devoted to the topic, the problem still remains incorporated into the very fabric of the modern society. One of the most hideous violations of the basic human rights and the assault on human dignity, rape is traditionally defined as the “forced vaginal, oral, and anal sex” (James, 2008, p. 214). However, unlike other crimes, which typically presuppose that the victim should be insistent in their endeavor of helping identify the criminal and restoring justice, rape often suppresses the victim’s willingness to fight, leading to a drastic drop in the self-esteem rates and the following self-accusations (James, 2008). While being seemingly absurd, the specified situation occurs in the majority of instances, therefore, making a case for the further study of the issue and defining the nursing approach, which will allow the victim to refrain from the self-accusation process. An incorporation of the patient-centered approach and the detachment of the patient from the social and cultural factors, which may aggravate the problem, will lead to the recovery of the patient.
Strategy of Investigating the Problem: General Research
Since the research is aimed at identifying qualitative relationships between the key variables (i.e., the rape factors and the victims), the qualitative design of the study was chosen. Seeing that the problem is extremely vast and embraces a range of people disregarding their age, gender and culture, carrying out a study involving specific participants would mean narrowing the research results down to a very small and specific group, therefore, making them inapplicable for the rest of the victims. Therefore, a general research was chosen as the basis for carrying out the study in as objective a manner as possible.
Though the image of a rape victim is traditionally associated with women, men may also suffer a sexual assault. An overview of the existing literature shows that the significance of adopting a patient-centered approach with the following focus on the restoration of the patient’s self-esteem and improvement of their self-image is essential for promoting the recovery of the rape victim and the following prevention of further instances of the like.
Patient Related Factors
As it has been stressed above, in a range of cases, the people, who suffered rape, view themselves as not the victims of obsessed maniacs, but as the guilty party. Despite being absurd and based on an entirely false premise, the specified factor affects the patient to the nth degree, making the treatment process extremely difficult, if not entirely impossible (Jewkes et al., 2015).
System Related Factors
While being the result of a deviation in the criminal’s perverted mind, rape can, in fact, be inspired by a range of cultural and social factors. For instance, it is no coincidence that women are the victims of rape in most cases, though clearly not in all instances, are female (James, 2008, p. 214).
The review of the existing literature on the subject matter has shown, the problem of unawareness of the key information on the subject matter has been addressed, and a range of strategies for preventing rape have been suggested. Representing the rules of conduct in a variety of situations and embracing every possible scenario, the principles in question have a common idea of the importance of spelling out the unwillingness to engage in a sexual intercourse or the related activity (Gerradi, Rothbaum, Rastin & Kelley, 2010).
In addition, the gender issue in general and the fact that men are prone to ignoring a woman’s refusal to continue further communication in particular need to be viewed as the key system related factors (James, 2008, p. 220).
Gaps in the Literature
Though admittedly shedding much light on the issue of rape, as well as providing enough strategies for people in the risk group to avoid the situations that may lead to rape, the literature studied still has certain incompleteness to it. Specifically, the gaps concerning identifying the behavior patterns that a potential rapist may adopt deserve to be mentioned. True, individual characteristics of people do not allow for defining the ultimate model of behavior, which signals a threat to the safety of the people in the vicinity; however, certain signs, which may help identify the danger at the earliest stages of its development, could be of huge significance for the prevention of rape.
In addition, the literature in question seems to lack the data concerning the means for increasing rape awareness. Admittedly offering ample data concerning the threats of rape and the methods of preventing it, the resources fail to embrace the methods for raising awareness concerning the issue. Despite being used widely, the traditional methods of informing the people, who may be under the threat of becoming rape victims, do not work, as the statistics concerning the instances of rape in the United States shows (). It can be assumed that the target audience needs not only obvious, on-your-nose messages concerning the danger, but also cautionary ones, which inform the reader in a less obvious manner and use subtler ways of suggesting the required behavioral models.
Being discussed back and forth in contemporary researches, the issue of helping rape victims, as well as the prevention of rape, still needs further enhancement due to the persistence of a range of harmful stereotypes in the modern society and the lack of emotional support, which rape victims get from their relatives, not to mention their therapists. Herein the significance of adopting a patient-centered approach as the key towards galvanizing the therapy process and contributing to the patient’s recovery lies. It is also crucial that awareness concerning the issue should be spread more actively and that the precaution measures designed for preventing rape should be taken seriously by both men and women of all ages.
Gerradi, M., Rothbaum, B. O., Rastin, M. C. & Kelley, M. (2010). Cortisol response following exposure treatment for PTSD in rape victims. Journal of Aggression, Maltreatment & Trauma, 19(4): 349–356.
James, R. K. (2008). Sexual assault. In R. K. James, Crisis intervention (pp. 214–228). 6th ed. Stamford, CT: Cengage Learning.
Jewkes, R., Jina R., Vetten, L., Christofides, N., Sigsworth , R., & Loots, L. (2015). Genito-anal injury patterns and associated factors in rape survivors in an urban province of South Africa: a cross-sectional study. BMC Women’s Health, 15(1), 29–42.