This 8-minute video, available in French only, includes testimonials from four men who have been the victims of sexual assault. They talk about the challenges they have faced following these episodes of sexual violence in order to break taboos.
The filming of a discussion group plunges us into the stories of these four men who share their different experiences. Among other things, they discuss the difficulties associated with being both a man and a victim of sexual violence. These accounts help us to understand why this reality is still largely taboo. Certain similarities can be found in the different accounts, such as feelings of shame, fear of being judged and fear of bringing up the subject with their loved ones.
Sexual Violence as a Consequence of Rape Culture
Despite the diversity of the stories, the testimonials all shared a common thread: the explicit link between sexual violence and rape culture. Each story highlights in its own way the impact of gendered socialization on the victims’ experiences and challenges.
The different stories also show that men who are victims of sexual violence do not form a homogeneous group. For example, some men experienced violence as children, while others were well into their adulthood. Sometimes the act of sexual violence was committed by a family member, whereas in other cases the offender was a stranger.
A Trans Man’s Story of Sexual Violence
A key part of the video is the testimony of a trans man who has experienced sexual violence. Among other things, he talks of his fears regarding people’s reactions when he reveals that he has been repeatedly raped. He feels as though people consider the abuse he endured to be “normal” given his gender identity. At the end of his testimony, he makes a statement that strives to undermine these prejudices:
“I am not an object. I am human. I am entitled to the same respect as anyone else.”
Konbini is a popular French cultural media targeting young people aged 15 to 34. It features videos covering a number of themes, from technology and music to stories about sexuality and relationships, as well as artist interviews.