Arousal/Orgasm in Sexual Assault: IAmA Psychotherapist, Founder/Director of Sexual Assault Awareness, (and local mod), Back to Talk Taboo, #MeToo & Answer Your Q's on SA!
Hello again Reddit!
This is my thank you to Reddit, as much of what I've accomplished would not have happened without your support! As SAA moves into 2018, it seemed timely to once more address this under-discussed aspect:
The idea of having an orgasm or feeling arousal during rape or molestation is a confusing and difficult one for many people, both survivors and secondary-survivors (friends/family). Many do not believe it's possible for a woman or man to achieve orgasm during rape or other kinds of sexual assault. Some believe having an orgasm under these circumstances means that it wasn't a "real" rape or the woman/man "wanted" it. Addressing arousal and orgasm in SA is the final taboo in sexualized trauma; the thing no one wants to talk about. Understanding the psychology and neuro-biology underlying the victims' response to sexual assault will remove the shame and stigma, so a lot more healing can happen.
My clients have seen this, my professional colleagues are beginning to acknowledge this, and now, I hope once more, Reddit will too!
I’m Andrew Pari, LCSW, a.k.a. ChildTherapist, trauma/sexual assault specialist, and Founder/Director of Sexual Assault Awareness (SAA). It’s been over 4 years since I last posted on this topic and I’m so proud that it remains the largest online discussion on sexualized violence, thanks to all of you! Here's the prior post for reference: https://www.reddit.com/r/IAmA/comments/1w4d7m/orgasm_and_arousal_during_rape_or_sexual_assault/
Mod-Approved Proof: https://twitter.com/SexAssaultAware/status/966000078505746433
Since our last talk, I'm grateful to have been given the opportunity to do so many things to raise awareness on sexualized violence & victim response, such as:
trained & presented at some of the top organizations dedicated to eliminating sexualized violence, including End Violence Against Women Int’l (www.evaintl.org), the Conference on Crimes Against Women (www.conferencecaw.org), and the Institute on Violence, Abuse, & Trauma (www.ivatcenters.org),
- educated thousands of forensic & mental health professionals, military & law enforcement around the world from New York to Hawaii to Washington D.C. to Switzerland to Korea,
- partnering with a university on the first formal study on arousal/orgasm in sexualized violence. We are very excited about this! Shoutout to Kayla Bunderson who's leading the charge on this important study!,
- continuing 20 years of direct work with SA survivors, and getting over myself to begin providing tele-therapy for women in areas where the work I do isn't readily available, including service and outreach to CSECY and sex industry professionals,
and, hopefully, completing the book that folks have been asking me about for years.
I have a strong cup of coffee, my cat, and I'm ready to continue our talk. (And just to save some time: a duck-sized horse. I LOVE duck!)
Note: I will answer first-order (left-side) questions as it’s difficult to attempt tracking deviating comments. Don't be afraid to think your question may be offensive, as long as it isn’t deliberately so. I'd rather have a frank talk than leave people with false ideas.
EDIT: Like last time, I will continue to check in and answer questions as you post them. I'm receiving a number of PMs and plan to get to ALL of you. Please feel free to PM me, but just know it may be a day or two before I can reply.
Many of you have asked me for my contact info, so here you go!
Sexual Assault Awareness, LLC, is the agency.