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Information About Male Sexual Abuse & Assault

Information, resources, and insights for your journey.

At least 1 in 6 men have been sexually abused or assaulted.

Researchers have found that at least 1 in 6 men have experienced sexual abuse or assault, whether in childhood or as adults. And this is probably a low estimate, since it doesn’t include noncontact experiences, which can also have lasting negative effects. If you’ve had such an experience, or think you might have, you are not alone.

Behind the Statistic

Defining Unwanted Sexual Experiences

How people define their own experiences—and the labels they assign them (or don’t)—are very important, and we’re not interested in imposing labels. Instead, we’re offering a framework for thinking about past sexual experiences that may have caused or contributed to current problems.

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Common Questions

You may have a lot of questions—or perhaps just a couple pressing ones you’d like answered. In this section, you’ll find the most common questions we’ve been getting for years. Some of the information may not apply to your experience, and that’s OK. Decide what’s useful, and leave the rest.

See the Questions

Topics

Here you’ll find information on topics relevant to many men who have experienced sexual abuse or assault, including shame, guilt, memories, masculinity, relationships, getting triggered, recovery, and more. If you’re wondering about a topic that isn’t mentioned in this section, it may be addressed in Common Questions.

Explore Topics

Male Survivor Stories

Everyone’s story is unique, but you may find that other men’s experiences shed light on your own.

  • The Bristlecone Project was developed by 1in6 founding Board member Dr. David Lisak and is now a collaborative awareness campaign of 1in6.

  • “That I can stand before camera, that I can stand before people and talk—it has been a long journey.”

  • Speaking out publicly and working to change Georgia’s statute of limitation laws have helped to Alan to get his power back, a crucial step in his healing.

  • Profoundly neglected as a child, then sexually abused by priests, Alan has finally found a community among fellow survivors at MSSAT in Christchurch, New Zealand.

  • Alastair has transformed his own trauma by creating community resources for fellow survivors, from Leicester, England to Phnom Penh, Cambodia, and soon beyond.

  • “[Poetry] seemed like the best way to express some of the things that were going on for me.”

  • “You know I’ve been sober for over twenty-seven years now.”

  • After 46 years of silence, Barry finally disclosed his secret, and now he is looking ahead to a new life of openness and activism.

  • Nightmarish memories have forced Bill to re-define his childhood, but he has embraced the challenge and the meaning it has given to the rest of his life.

  • “[Piano] feels like therapy. It really is healing, because I control the music and what comes out.”

  • “I wanted to know more about how to help people […] Nobody is talking about these things.”

  • “I guess what led me to come forward is these emotions were just rising.”

  • Overcoming a childhood ravaged by severe domestic violence and sexual abuse, Brent has found within himself a wellspring of compassion for himself, and for those who harmed him.

  • “I’m no longer comfortable being a survivor in silence.”

  • “I just wanted someone to see that I was going through this, and to kind of come along beside me.”

View All Stories

Facts & Myths

Here we address some myths that everyone absorbs to some extent. These myths are big obstacles to understanding and healing, so it’s really important to know just how wrong they are.

Learn the Facts

For Family and Friends

If you know a man who has experienced sexual abuse or assault, you may be wondering how you can best support him. Maybe you’re just beginning to learn about the negative effects of such an experience, or maybe you’ve been dealing with these issues for years. Remember: your needs matter, too.

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For Service Providers

If you’re a service provider working with men, you’ve come to the right place. We’re committed to educating clinicians and other providers about links between men’s unwanted or abusive sexual experiences and a variety of problems in their lives, as well as state of the art treatment options.

Learn more

BOOKS + FILMS

Recommended books and films for men who have experienced sexual abuse or assault, their loved ones, and service providers.

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