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Teenage males experience sexual violence more than females, study shows

More males within the age of 13 to 24 years old experience sexual violence than females, a study pf the Council for the Welfare of Children and the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) showed.

At a forum at the House of Representatives on Tuesday, Faye Balanon, child protection officer of UNICEF Philippines, presented results of the landmark National Baseline Study on Violence Against Children.

In this study, it is revealed that 21.5 percent of the respondents or one in five children experienced any form of sexual violence in any setting, may it be at home, school, workplace, community or during dating.

But of this number, 28.7 percent of the male respondents admitted to have experienced sexual violence, while only 20.1 percent of the female respondents said so.

"If we look at the numbers, it's more males who experience sexual violence when most of us assume that the results would tend to lean more towards females," Balanon said.

A total of 3,866 respondents participated in the study, 1,887 are females and 1,979 are males.

The study defines sexual violence as "taking photos or sex videos of being naked or engaging in sexual activities, unwanted touch, forced attempted sex, and forced consummated sex."

This definition, Balanon said, may have been the reason why the prevalence of sexual abuse among children is higher in the Philippines than in other countries.

"Because we included taking photos or sex videos, the numbers could have gone up because of that, because we considered that as sexual violence while other countries did not consider that as sexual violence," she said.

Forced consummated sex

Prevalence of forced consummated sex is likewise higher among males below the age of 18 than females, the study showed.

Overall, the prevalence rate in males is 4.1 percent compared to 2.3 percent in females.

The study showed that at home, forced consummated sex is more prevalent in females (1.8 percent) than males (1.4 percent),

Yet, the same act it is more prevalent in males in schoola (2.1 percent), during dating (3.5 percent) and in the community (1.0 percent), as compared to females (1.1 percent, 2.6 percent, 0.3 percent, respectively).

Balanon said data from the Department of Education (DepEd) has corroborated their findings as regards prevalence of forced consummated sex in the school setting.

"Most of sexual abuse cases reported to the Child Protection Committees in DepEd are of boys. So it is confirmed at least in the school settings," she said.

Sexual violence at home

Overall, sexual violence in the home is more prevalent in males (12.6 percent) than in females (8.5 percent), the study showed.

Balanon noted that individuals who have perpetrated sexual violence among children at home are those who are close to them or live with them.

In fact, the study showed that a child's brother, cousin, stepbrother, sister are among the top perpetrators of sexual violence at home, regardless of the sex of the victim.

In school, males are also more likely to have experienced sexual violence, at 6.7 percent, compared to females, at 4.5 percent.

The study showed that 27.47 percent of those who experienced sexual violence in school belong to the age range of 16 to 18 years old.

Even during dating, males tend to be sexually abused than females, the study revealed.

Attempted sex during dating, for example is more prevalent in males, at 10.2 percent, than in females, at 9.3 percent. The case is the same for forced consummated sex without consent, at 10.5 percent in males and 10.4 percent in females.


Balanon noted that social conditioning, or how the society shapes a child, contributes a lot to how sexual abuse is being propagated nowadays, not much of hormonal stimulation.

"Social modelling plays a big role in this. We are surrounded by these messages on social media where the rape culture is very much rampant. We see rape threats. 'Hokage moves' are seen as a good thing, that you're in," she said.

"This is what is shaping our children, our teenagers, because they are our social barometers of how our society works. And the barometer is saying one in five Filipino children experience any form of sexual violence," she added. —ALG, GMA News