At UK SAYS NO MORE, we are always looking to make it known that anyone can be affected by domestic violence and sexual assault. We can all experience violence or abuse no matter our age, sexuality, race, disability, ethnicity or gender.
We’re proud to have partnered, and continue to partner, with a range of non-profit organisations, working across the UK to offer specialist support to those in need. Among those are services for men – who are sometimes put aside when it comes to discussions and ideas about victims of domestic violence and sexual assault.
One of these partners is Survivors UK. Survivors UK provide specialist support to men who have experienced sexual abuse. To action our goal of raising awareness of support services available to men in the UK, Survivors UK have agreed to share with us some case studies, demonstrating the importance of specialist service. The case studies also highlight not only the support needed for those who have experienced sexual abuse, but for their loved ones.
Aaron contacted SurvivorsUK to discuss his experience of being sexually abused when he was a child. Flashbacks and nightmares relating to the abuse were severely affecting his mental health and wellbeing. Through discussion with the helpliner, Aaron came to realise that the recent death of his abuser may have contributed to these flashbacks and nightmares. Having never had a relationship due to difficulties with sexual intimacy and trust, Aaron also realised that meeting someone of interest to him recently had allowed these anxieties to surface again.
Together with the helpliner, Aaron was able to talk through some coping strategies to help with the flashbacks, nightmares and anxieties. He was also reassured that these difficulties can be normal for survivors of sexual abuse, and that help is available, including specialist local support for male survivors. Aaron said he had been surprised about how easy it had been to open up about his problems once he started, and was really pleased that there was someone to talk to, as it meant he no longer felt so stressed and alone.
Anna contacted SurvivorsUK to discuss her relationship with her partner, as she was finding it very difficult to cope with his anger. He had been gang raped when he was younger, and she felt that he was carrying a lot of anger because of this. This led to communication difficulties within their relationship, and Anna was relieved to be able to discuss them openly and honestly for the first time.
Together with the helpliner, Anna was able to explore some of her and her partner’s options for support, both as a couple and individually. She said that her partner knew she was using the helpline, and that he might be willing to contact SurvivorsUK now that he knew what sort of service it offers. Anna also thought that couples counselling might be helpful to them, to explore the issues in the relationship with professional support. The helpliner advised her of local counselling services so that they could refer themselves when they were ready. Anna said that she had felt very stuck before using the helpline, but that she was now more hopeful about the future with her partner.
Find out more about the work of Survivors UK, and other organisations offering support to men experiencing violence or abuse. You can also explore and consider donating to all of our non-profit partners.
If you are in need of support – visit the Get Help page for a list of resources. Remember that if you ever feel in immediate danger, call 999.