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Be Aware

Monday, April 1st, 2024

by Bethany Eggers, MA, LPC-MH


April is Sexual Assault Awareness month. Sexual assault remains a widespread issue in our society, with individuals of all ages and backgrounds falling victim to this heinous crime. It is an act of violence that violates the core principles of consent, respect, and human dignity. To combat this silent epidemic, it is important that we raise awareness about sexual assault, empower survivors, and foster a culture of prevention and support. 

Statistics reveal a startling reality. According to the statistics gathered by the National Sexual Violence Resource Center, 53% of women and over 29% of men reported experiencing contact sexual violence in their lifetime. Most women and men across all sexual identities who experienced contact sexual violence reported that the person who harmed them was someone they knew. Many incidents remain unreported due to fear, shame, or a lack of trust in the justice system. 

The consequences of sexual assault are profound and far-reaching, impacting survivors physically, emotionally, and psychologically. Survivors frequently suffer from a range of adverse effects, including depression, anxiety, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and even suicidal ideation. By shedding light on these consequences, we can begin to combat the prevailing stigma surrounding sexual assault and provide survivors with the support they desperately need.

 By educating ourselves and others, we can foster a more compassionate and understanding society. By promoting open conversations about consent, boundaries, and respect, we empower individuals to foster mutually respectful and consensual interactions. By raising awareness about the resources available, survivors are more likely to seek the help they need and take steps toward healing and recovery. By emphasizing the importance of consent and teaching healthy boundaries, we can reshape cultural norms and create a society in which sexual assault is no longer tolerated.

The National Sexual Assault Telephone Hotline number is (800) 656-HOPE(4673).

At all four of our locations - River Counseling Services in Platte, Sioux Falls Psychological Services, and Stronghold Counseling Services in Sioux Falls and in Yankton, our mission is this- we meet you where you are, offering hope.  You may schedule an appointment at the Platte office at 605-274-2716 or meet with one of our Sioux Falls or Yankton-based therapists from your computer, smartphone, or in person at any of our clinics.