October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month, and it pains me that we even need to be aware of this in the first place. It’s crucial to recognize this issue and to become well informed, alert, attentive and to appreciate that our attitudes and culture still need much improvement. Our society continues to deprecate women and “it’s on us” to stop it.
In September 2014, the White House launched the “It’s On Us Initiative” which is a campaign targeting campus sexual assaults. Its’ aim is to get men to “step up” on college campuses to stop sexual violence against women.
An estimated 1 in 5 women has experienced a sexual assault during college, and only 12% are reported. The terror of sexual violence haunts the survivor well after the act itself. To add insult to injury, I have heard a number of patients at Maze Women’s Sexual Health who were assaulted during college express feelings of shame and guilt – as if the fault is theirs and not the person who raped them. This needs to change.