SunstarTV Bureau: Sexual assault is always traumatizing and demeaning for its victims. But the motives behind it vary. No one can deny that being raped is one of the most distressing, horrendous and demeaning experiences anyone could have. It almost always leaves the victim with feelings of self-loathing, self-blame and rage, and can cause post-traumatic syndrome disorder( PTSD).
But have you ever wondered about the rapist? Why do men rape? This is a complicated question with multiple answers, as several factors play roles in producing a rapist.
A sexual assaulter can be any kind of person. This statement isn’t meant to make everyone scared of everyone else; rather, it just means that there isn’t one specific type who commits such kinds of crimes. These men had diverse backgrounds, social statuses and, of course, different personalities and mentalities. What surprised him was how unconcerned they sounded when talking about such a criminal offense. Motives behind rape vary and are difficult to quantify. However, studies show that rapists have some common characteristics:
– Toxic masculinity
– Feelings of hostility towards women
Sexual assault is not about sexual gratification or sexual interest, but more about dominating people by promoting toxic masculinity in rape culture. The lead to this mishaps is among males of the society to have social status among male peers as it is considered a man highly sexually experienced is the one sexually active and is often stigmatized. These kinds of peer pressure set men up to become sex offenders because many fears to be discovered as not sexually experienced by their peers.In other words, there are elements at work in some cultures, and often even in media, that suggest to these men that they should assert dominance over women as a form of fake masculinity and that stigmatize those who don’t have a lot of sexual encounters.
Narcissism: a sexual desire or act of violence
It is essential first to establish that rape to be a criminal offense rather than a mental disorder. Although some may have a psychological disorder , but that might not justify the indicator of rising rape factor. Some biologists believe that the primary motive behind rape is indeed sex. Whereas, some argue that rape is a result of Darwinian selection and are of the opinion that it evolved to increase the reproductive success of men. They point out that most victims are women of childbearing age, saying this supports their hypothesis that rape derives from a desire to reproduce. In fact, most social scientists, psychologists and feminist activists are of the opinion that rape is not about lust but motivated by the urge to control and dominate.
Hostility toward women
Rapists often see women as sex objects who are there to fulfill men’s sexual needs. They tend to hold false beliefs, often described as rape myths. For instance, a rapist can believe that if a woman says no, she really means yes, and that she is just playing around or challenging him. According to some psychologists a man described both of his rape experiences as “powerful,” “titillating,” and “very exciting.” In which women are seen as inferior beings to men. This makes it much easier for women to become the targets of aggression. For men in such cultures, part of their cultural training is for them to lose touch with their emotions. They do not know how to deal with their own feelings and even worse, they are not aware of the feelings of others or simply do not care.
The link between narcissism and rape seems to be especially strong when repeat offenders are concerned. One of the key characteristics shared by rapists and narcissists is a tendency to dehumanize others.
Types of rapist
There are several types of rapists. There is the opportunistic rapist, who seizes any chance for sexual gratification, such as the loss of self-control on the part of their victim under the influence of alcohol.
Another type is sadistic rapist, whose motivation is to humiliate and degrade victims. The vindictive rapist has anger and aggression focused directly toward women. Such a rapist believes he is permitted to sexually attack women because he feels he has been hurt, rejected or wronged by women in the past. Rapists often deny having raped their victims and frequently try to justify their actions. Men who admit rape often try to find excuses for what they have done. Sexual assault is an inexcusable act of violence and a criminal offense. Unfortunately, a lot of the victims remain silent to avoid stigmatization and being blamed by society, while their rapists are free to look for another victim.
There is an urgent need for development of methods of assessment and management of sex offenders (rapists, child sex offenders, other sexual offenders, and murderers) to mount a society-wide battle against the scourge of sexual offences in India despite of considering it from other corresponding angles such as mental health issues.