The CARE Office is dedicated to understanding the unique challenges our survivors face and hope to provide confidential services for all members of the UC Merced community. The reality is that men and boys experience interpersonal violence at rates higher than reported. Our goal is to support all survivors regardless of how they identify.
Some men may never have spoken about their experience before or even acknowledged it. Men who are reaching out for help for the first time may be very nervous or defensive about asking for help, unsure of what to expect, or ambivalent about moving forward. Men and boys who have been sexually assaulted or abused may also face some additional challenges because of societal attitudes and stereotypes about men and masculinity. Socialized as boys to hide and deny emotions such as fear, sadness and depression - men often fall back on ineffective coping mechanisms that can lead to addictions, risky physical activities, anger management issues, suicide, and violence against themselves or others.
Research has found that one in six men have experienced unwanted or abusive sexual experiences before the age of 18. The commonly reported number of 16 percent of males experiencing abuse is grossly underestimated because males who have such experiences are less likely to disclose them than females. Simply stated, male sexual abuse is common, under-reported, under-recognized, and under-treated.