Sexual assaults

Myths or Fact?

Even today, there are still many myths and prejudices about sexual assault.

Can you recognize them?

Sexual assault perpetrators are usually strangers.
True
False
It's
False
Myth. In most cases, the perpetrators are known to the victims and survivors. These individuals often use strategies such as manipulation, blackmail and threats to achieve their ends. Who can commit sexual assault? An "ordinary" person, the "average Joe," a friend, a spouse, a family member, a neighbour, an acquaintance or even a person in a position of authority.
Victims and survivors are responsible for their aggression.
True
False
It's
False
Myth. Regardless of the person's behaviour, whether it's going out alone at night, using drugs or alcohol, dressing a certain way, or driving someone home, the individual who commits the aggression is the sole person responsible for their actions.
Victims and survivors often make false accusations.
True
False
It's
False
Myth. The percentage of false accusations for all crimes is estimated at 2%. There is no reason to conclude that the rate is higher regarding sexual assault. This prejudice has the impact of discrediting the voices of victims and survivors.
Rape is the only "real" sexual assault.
True
False
It's
False
Myth. Too often, the degree of violence during the crime is used to determine what will be socially considered a "real" sexual assault. This attempt at categorizing an assault based on the degree of its violence invalidates the experiences of victims and survivors of exhibitionism, fondling, harassment and other attacks that are wrongly considered to be less severe. These acts are also forms of violence that can have a range of repercussions for the people who suffer from them.
People who commit sexual assaults are deviant.
True
False
It's
False
Myth. Sexual assault is not an act of uncontrollable sexual urge but an act of violence, power and domination. In most cases, the perpetrators of these attacks are part of the victim’s network. These individuals premeditate their crimes and are not struggling with severe psychological problems.
Your partners cannot sexually assault you.
True
False
It's
False
Myth. Sexual assaults can occur within a couple. There is no such thing as "marital duty" or the responsibility to satisfy the "needs" of the other. A person is always free to consent or not to a sexual relationship with anyone and to withdraw their consent at any time.
An older person is unlikely to experience sexual assault.
True
False
It's
False
Myth. Sexual assault affects women and girls of all ages. That being said, some people are impacted differently by various contexts of oppression, discrimination and exclusion, giving rise to situations of vulnerability that are even more conducive to sexual assault. This is particularly the case for seniors, First Nations, racialized people, immigrants, people living with a disability, and sexually- and gender-diverse people.
If a person experienced physiological reactions during the assault, they were consenting.
True
False
It's
False
Myth. It is natural for the body to react to stimulation, whether desired or not. Vaginal lubrication, erection or orgasm, for example, can be triggered without a person consenting to the sexual relationship.
Find a CALACS

To find a center near you, browse through the list of resources like CALACS (Sexual Assault Help Centers) or use our service locator.  

RQCALACS does not store your location information