There are three sides in every sexual assault case: her side, his side, and the truth. This statement could not be more true. However, more often than not, her story is what actually happened. The stigmatism, emotional unrest, and shame are just a few of the harms that accompany sexual abuse, not to mention the violation of one’s body.

Coming forward after being assaulted is one of the hardest things to do, and with accusations of false allegations, simply wanting money or attention, what good would come out of telling anyone? With the court systems being oddly sympathetic to those accused of rape and sexual abuse, it is no wonder that more than half of all women assaulted don’t come forward.

Coming forward is a long process that is not easy by any means. Facing one’s rapist in a courtroom full of people and revealing every detail of how that person violated what should be held as the most sacred of things, one’s own body, is not what anyone wants to do, especially when a defense attorney is trying to discredit everything said.

With all of this being said, is it truly worth it to go through the court systems to get justice after being attacked? Without a doubt, most of our peers, and a jury, would feel a true hurt for victims and wish dearly that sexual attacks never happen to anyone, but the victims “riskier” choices never have nor should they be a reason to blame them for their assault.

Unfortunately, victims are blamed. A lawyer will make a jury believe that the way a girl was dressed was the reason she was attacked, or that she did not remember what actually happened because she chose to engage in high risk behavior such as drinking or doing drugs.

A study done by the RAINN department of justice showed that out of every 100 rapes, only 46 get reported to police, twelve lead to an arrest, nine get prosecuted, five lead to a felony conviction, and only three will go to jail. 97% of  rapists getting off scotch free is not justice for victims.

Instead of turning to the courts to get retribution against their attackers, women should instead focus on getting better both physically and emotional. Talking to a counselor or a therapist could be more beneficial than re-living possibly the worst experience of one’s life. Until the court system is fixed and is more in favor of victims, there cannot be justice.

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