Sexual Assault in Sports

Sexual Assault in women’s sports needs to be stopped. Too many voices are being unheard and shamed with the accusation of lying.

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Sexual Assault in women’s sports needs to be stopped. Too many voices are being unheard and shamed with the accusation of lying.

Most people consider sports as an escape from reality. A way to shift focus from what’s going on in the real world. But what if the thing that’s supposed to take away all worries is actually what you need to escape from most?

Sexual assault, especially in women’s sports, has become an ongoing problem around the world. Women continue to be taken advantage of by trusted coaches and other sports administrators.

Women and athletes in general are taught discipline, and to never go against the word of a coach. Therefore when women are being sexually assaulted, they are too afraid to reach out and ask for help.

Studies say that around 40 percent of women in athletics will be sexually violated at some point in their athletic career. This number continues to increase across the country because women are too scared to reach out, thinking no one will believe them.

Worldwide, there are many unspoken cases about sexual assault in women’s sports, but as a community, Cathedral Catholic High School gives opportunities for students to learn and educate others about SA.

Taylor Reed, a senior at CCHS, is enrolled in a government class, where they were instructed to research a certain topic pertaining to the law side of things. Although in order to get the right side of law, she first had to research the basic knowledge of sexual assault and more information on how relevant it truly is.

Reed plays soccer at CCHS, therefore coming in contact with several different coaches and mentors. She knows what it feels like to have trust in a coach and gives her take on how she relates it to her own life.

Reed says, “Obviously being in sports you never want it to happen to you, so when I heard it was happening at a professional level it really scares me.”

No matter what age, young or old, women can become voiceless and muted by the authority of someone older than them. Some women may still even feel that they don’t have the right to speak up, and it’s not their place to speak against the coach in such a slandering manner.

Reed states, “It’s important to be aware of how people in power can hide things from getting out to the public.”

Those who use their power for worse instead of for better are normally  not seen at first as a standout red flag. This is the reason that sexual assault can go so unnoticed, because the women themselves don’t even see the signs.

Reed says,“You can’t really see it necessarily. It’s more of just being aware of what’s around you.”

The signs, if any at all, are very subtle and hard to catch. However, in order to find these signs, be alert at all times and remind yourself that maybe not everyone is who they appear to be at first.

The men in authority already have enough power, yet they feel more in power because women can be perceived as weaker and more voiceless.

“Women and in sports in general are just not taken as seriously.”

Women need to feel comfortable in talking to an adult they know they can trust such as a parent or a sibling, someone who will never turn their back on them when they’re unheard.

Taking understanding to the opposite side of the situation is also a very important role. In order to understand you have to listen to what they have to say and give them the support and love they need in order to get through this difficult time.