Sexual assault can happen regardless of gender. Hazing, physical abuse and humiliation can be forms of sexual assault if the actions include sexual force, threats, intimidation or abuse of authority. If you do not or cannot consent, it is sexual assault.
More male Soldiers are coming forward to get help. If you were sexually assaulted, know that you are not alone. The following list includes some common experiences shared by men who have survived sexual assault. It is not a complete list, but it may help you to know that other people have had similar experiences:
- Anxiety, depression, fearfulness or post-traumatic stress.
- Avoiding people or places related to the assault or abuse.
- Concerns or questions about sexual orientation.
- Fear of the worst happening and having a sense of a shortened future.
- Feeling like "less of a man" or that you no longer have control over your body.
- Feeling on edge, being unable to relax, and having difficulty sleeping.
- Sense of blame or shame over not being able to stop the assault or abuse, especially if you experienced an erection or ejaculation.
- Withdrawal from relationships or friendships and an increased sense of isolation.
- Anger issues/lashing out.
- Substance misuse issues.
Some men may feel as though what happened to them was not a criminal act because their experience with sexual violence was disguised as bullying, hazing or other abusive acts. Bullying is typically an exclusive behavior with the ultimate goal to belittle, break down and further hurt an individual. Hazing is an inclusive behavior, with the goal to bring an individual into the “fold” or “brotherhood.” – DOD Safe Helpline
Step Up for Your Brother Campaign
Sexual harassment and sexual assault can happen regardless of gender. However, men are less likely to report incidents or seek help for fear of stigma surrounding male sexual harassment and sexual assault. As fellow Soldiers, we can create an environment where sexual violence is not tolerated. What will you do to step up for your brother?STEP UP FOR YOUR BROTHER CAMPAIGN
DOD Men's SAPR Campaign
The DOD’s Men’s Sexual Assault Prevention and Response (SAPR) campaign focuses on sexual assault male service members experience. It addresses the personal impact and negative effects on readiness and unit cohesion when sexual assaults occur. The campaign also provides vital education and access to resources for SAPR professionals and victims of sexual assault.DOD MEN'S SAPR CAMPAIGN
Contact Your Sexual Assault Response Coordinator (SARC)
Communication between you and a Sexual Assault Response Coordinator (SARC) or Victim Advocate (VA) is privileged and will not be released to others (MRE 514). Our professionals will make sure you are protected, treated with dignity and respect, and receive timely access to medical treatment. Response services are always confidential.Find your SARC
The DOD Safe Helpline is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and is anonymous, confidential and secure. Staff members will listen to you, discuss safety planning and tell you about resources, and can connect you with local resources such as a SARC or VA when you are ready.
Call 877-995-5247 to be connected with a trained Safe Helpline staff member.
DSN users can call the Safe Helpline at 877-995-5247.
For those unable to call toll-free or DSN, call 202-540-5962.Chat with Staff Member