WHAT’S BEING CLAIMED:
- A new study from Cambridge and Harvard has revealed that many women’s first sexual encounters involve rape.
- Researchers surveyed women aged 18-44 and found that 1 in 16 of them was forced or coerced into their first sexual experience.
- That means over 3 million American women lost their virginities due to rape.
A new study led by Dr. Laura Hawks reveals shocking numbers regarding women’s loss of virginity. In the U.S., one in sixteen women were forced or coerced physically or verbally into their first sexual experience. That equals over three million women who lost their virginity due to rape.
The researchers from Cambridge Health Alliance and Harvard University say that the findings are “just the tip of the iceberg” as the study only surveyed 13,310 women aged 18-44.
Among those included in the study, 6.5% reported that their first sexual encounter was a result of force or coercion. Of those, 56% were coerced verbally rather than physically. Around 16% of those women said that partners made threats of ending the relationship if they didn’t agree to sex. About a third of those non-consensual sexual encounters also resulted in unwanted pregnancies.
Perpetrators of the rape are usually people that these women know and are familiar with. They take advantage of girls and young women with little or no sexual experience. The study found that on average, those raped lost their virginity at age 15 ½. This is two years earlier than those who had a consensual initial encounter.
A person’s first sexual encounter is a formative experience that is crucial when it comes to a person’s intimacy in the future. Traumatic experiences can hinder sexual development and affect other areas of a person’s psychology as well. Dr. Alison Huang and Dr. Carolyn Gibson wrote that work should be done to determine the long-term effects of these experiences can have on women’s health.
Source: Daily Mail Online