Interpersonal violence refers to violence and abuse that occurs between people who know each other. It can occur within or outside a family setting. Interpersonal violence involves a serious abuse of power, consisting of the exertion of physical force and power over another individual with the intent of controlling, disempowering, and/or injuring that individual. This can cause feelings such as fear, anxiety, nervousness, guilt, helplessness, or worthlessness.
Any man, woman or child can be sexually victimized regardless of age, race, economic status or sexual orientation.
: Hitting, slapping, pushing, biting, punching, choking and restraining.
Everyone copes with crisis differently. Any reaction to rape should be accepted as normal reactions. Survivors of sexual assault, however, consistently describe certain symptoms and reactions which have been named Rape Trauma Syndrome. Survivors may experience any number of these symptoms at any point in time during recovery from an assault.
Some of these reactions are physical and may include body soreness and pain, difficulty eating and sleeping, and general fatigue.
Other reactions are emotional. These may include feelings of shock, fear, shame, guilt, isolation, grief, depression, anger and embarrassment. Emotional scars generally take longer to heal than physical injuries.
Getting back to normal can take a long time. Frequently, survivors may try to block out painful memories and feelings. It is best, however, to talk about the fears and feelings associated with the experience. Healing can begin by sharing pain.
Many survivors find it helpful to talk with a Rape Care Counselor. They are trained to listen, understand and help deal with painful feelings. Call the Sexual Violence Program for counseling referrals, and support 1.888.264.RAPE.
On campus, contact Counseling and Psychological Services at 732-571-7517 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Additional resources on Interpersonal Violence may be found on our Web-based Resources page.