Against his will: Female-on-male rape

Story highlights

  • Female-on-male sexual assault is underreported, according to the CDC
  • Male victims have a harder time defining what happened to them as assault, experts say
  • New study shows nearly 1 in 10 youths (aged 14-21) have perpetrated sexual violence
"Go back to sleep."
Groggy from a night of drinking, that's precisely what James Landrith did.
The next morning, Landrith -- who was 19 at the time -- woke up in a bed that he quickly realized was not his own. As his haze lifted, he recognized the woman who ordered him to sleep the night before as a friend of a friend.
He remembered she asked for a ride home after their mutual friend left the nightclub where they'd been partying. He remembered the woman was pregnant and bought him drinks as a thank you.
He remembered feeling disoriented, and her suggesting a motel room to sleep it off. He even remembered lying down with his pants on, uncomfortable taking them off in front of a stranger, only to awaken later and find the woman straddling him. What he didn't remember was saying "yes."
The morning after, that familiar voice told him that he could hurt the baby if he put up a fight. Then, he says, she forced herself on him again. A few minutes later it was over. One night in a motel twin bed turned into years of self-examination.
It took some time, and the help of a therapist, to get there: "I was finally able to call it what it was," he says.