Sexual safety - Harassment and abuse
Sexual harassment is any kind of unwelcome attention of a sexual nature. It could be making gestures, jokes or comments through to touching someone sexually, making sexual advances or pressuring them sexually. It is any kind of sexual behaviour that makes the target feel uncomfortable.
Sexual harassment is unlawful in the workplace in New Zealand. Most schools will also have anti bullying and harassment policies to protect students form unwanted behaviour.
For some people their experience of sex and what it means has been confusing, hurtful and frightening.
Being touched or being made to do something to someone else that doesn’t feel OK, or that you don’t want is called sexual abuse or sometimes rape.
Most of the time the person knows the abuser. Sometimes the abuser is a stranger. The abuser could be bigger, stronger, drunk or sober. In reality, the abuser could be anybody.
Sometimes the abused person feels like what happens is their fault, but it never is.
It something has happened to you that has made you feel stink, that worries you or you just don’t feel OK about, then making decisions about sex can be a lot harder.
Don’t feel like you have to go it alone, there are always people to help. Start by talking to someone you can trust.