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  • Voltaire Staff

Over 70% of men victims of female sexual abuse at least once, says research

More than 70 per cent of men reported to have experienced some form of sexual victimisation by women at least once in their lifetime, a study has revealed.

Published in journal Archives of Sexual Behavior, the research was conducted with 1,124 heterosexual British men.

The participants were asked to fill out an online survey, a changed version of the CDC National Intimate Partner and Sexual Violence Survey.


The study's one of the goals was to find out how often British men experienced sexual victimisation by women in their lifetime. The second goal was to see if this kind of victimisation, including how often it happened and the types involved, is connected to mental health issues like anxiety, depression, and PTSD.

The researchers also checked if following traditional masculine norms affects the link between male sexual victimisation by women and mental health problems.

The participants for the study were hired through Prolific Academic, and received £1 as compensation.

The participants were asked questions about sexual victimisation, conformity to gender norms, PTSD, anxiety, and depression in a random order. After the study was over, participants were given information about the study's purpose, and were offered resources for mental health and support related to male sexual victimisation.


The results showed that 71 per cent of the people in the sample reported experiencing male sexual victimisation by women, with 57 per cent of them experiencing victimisation more than once, and 45 per cent more than twice.

Almost 40 per cent reported experiencing attempted or completed forced vaginal/anal penetration.

The study showed that sexual victimisation happened by force or threats of physical harm 4.77 per cent of the time, by pressuring 33 per cent of the time, and by taking advantage of intoxication or the inability to consent 29.40 per cent of the time.


According to researchers, there is a significant gap in research when it comes to sexual victimisation in men, especially in cases involving female perpetrators, and its impact on men's mental health. While there is a reasonable expectation that male victims may face similar levels of mental disorders, the available data is limited.

Incidence rates of male sexual victimisation vary widely, ranging from less than one per cent to 73 per cent, with the highest reported estimate specifically involving female perpetrators at 70 per cent.

According to the researchers, a meta-study of 10 previous studies found that victimised men suffered from higher rates of mental disorders, including anxiety, depression, alcohol abuse, and "suicidality," compared to non-victimised men.

Multiple studies indicate that there is no gender difference in mental disorders related to sexual victimisation, they said.

The results surpass the figures reported in the NISVS study, upon which the researchers based their model.

The extreme numbers may be linked to survey modifications, including the inclusion of new forms of sexual victimisation (such as digital stimulation and object penetration) not measured before, researchers said.



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