1 in 6 men have experienced abusive sexual experiences before the age of 18.

(U.S. Centers for Disease Control)

However alarming that statistic may be, male survivors often do not seek help for fear of how society will view their victimization. Male survivors struggle to disclose their experiences in a world that reveres the strong, heterosexual, athletic, uber­-masculine man’s man. Unfortunately, all of these things are questioned when a man has been a victim of sexual abuse. While attention has been paid to female sexual assault, male survivors still face unique barriers in finding an agency that feels comfortable and inclusive for men. This is why First Step strives to create an environment that is accepting in all areas beginning with our 24­-hour Help­line, our office spaces, and the range of services we offer survivors.

Male survivors are affected greatly by the trauma of sexual violence and it is important that agencies like First Step work to incorporate gender inclusive services so we can reduce the stigma that men feel in reaching out to get help and create more opportunities for them to feel supported and understood. For more information please call the First Step 24-hour helpline at 734-722-6800.