How women sexually abuse men
“Contrary to stereotypes that women are sexually passive and ‘uninterested,’ there are women who demand, pressure, extort, and even force adult and adolescent men into sexual interactions.”
—Peter Anderson and Cindy Struckman-Johnson, Sexually Aggressive Women: Current Perspectives and Controversies
What's in This Post
|Can Women Sexually Abuse Their Boyfriends and Husbands?|
|10 Ways Women Sexually Abuse Men|
|Men's Stories About Being Sexually Abused by Wives and Girlfriends|
|Forced Penetration Research|
|Abuse OF Men By Women Book|
Can Women Sexually Abuse Their Boyfriends and Husbands?
I define partner abuse as controlling, demeaning, or punishing behavior by one partner to the other.
In sexual abuse of a partner, sex is the mechanism for abuse.
People can be shocked at the idea that women can sexually abuse men, but women can, and do, sexually abuse men. It may look different than the classic sexual abuse of women by men, but it is sexual abuse when a woman uses sex in a controlling, demeaning, or punishing way, and/or uses sex to control, demean, or punish.
The control exerted may be directly regarding the time, place, and methods of sexual activity, or it may be about the results of sexual activity. The control may be regarding non-sexual areas of life, but sex is the tool used for control.
Sexual abuse of men may occur during any phase or type of relationship: a one-night-stand, dating, cohabitating, marriage, or after a break-up.
10 Ways Women Sexually Abuse Men
You may be wondering Can a woman sexually assault a man? How does a woman sexually assault or abuse a man?
There are many ways a woman might sexually abuse a male partner (some on the list would rightfully be labeled assault, others, while not assault, may be abusive):
- forcing or pressuring him into sexual activities
- withholding sex
- using sex as a manipulation tool
- using sex to lure and trap
- “accidental” or coerced pregnancy
- flirting or having affairs with other men
- sexual teasing
- belittling sexual performance
- false accusations of rape/sexual abuse
Men's Stories About Being Sexually Abused by Women
I have talked to many men who have experienced many different types of sex abuse from their wives or girlfriends. I'll include a few of their stories here, but I recount more of them my book Abuse OF Men BY Women: It Happens, It Hurts, and It's Time to Get Real About It.
A man found that after they were married, his wife only wanted sex in the early morning. He worked long hours. He was tired in the morning. He didn’t want to have sex at that time of day. She ignored his objections. She’d just get on top of him and basically force a biological reaction.
She didn’t care whether he was asleep or awake. There was no romance. No intimacy. No consideration of his opinion. It was humiliating to him. It was just one of the many ways that his wife was controlling and demanding.
Another man, Alan, is quoted on the Australian website, One In Three: “Her sexual violation of my reluctant body had no name. Her demands were not simply an occasional inconsiderate insistence. This was a remorseless and frightening menace.”
A woman recounted that she and her husband would both use flirting to try to hurt each other when they were fighting. If they were in a bar during an argumentative phase, the angry partner would very publicly flirt with random bar patrons, intentionally trying to create pain for the other partner in order to punish him/her.
A man’s female co-worker seduced him into a sexual relationship, then used the power that gave her to make him support her work aspirations. Whenever she wanted his backing on her ideas, she would threaten to go to the company administration and cause problems for him.
Forced Penetration Research
Since I wrote Abuse OF Men BY Women: It Happens, It Hurts, and It's Time to Get Real About It, there has been more discussion and research about one particular form of sexual abuse of men by women: forced penetration.
In their 2020 article in the Journal of Contemporary Crime and Justice, The Assessment of Forced Penetration: A Necessary and Further Step Toward Understanding Men’s Sexual Victimization and Women’s Perpetration, American psychology professors RaeAnn Anderson, Erica Goodman, and Sidney Thimm offer this simple definition:
"Forced penetration is when someone is forced to use parts of their body to penetrate another person’s body."
Dr. Sioban Weare of the Lancaster University Law School, wrote an excellent article featuring the stories of 148 UK men who were forced to penetrate their abusers as children or adults: Forced-to-Penetrate Cases: Lived Experiences of Men.
Her findings included:
- The majority of the men were assaulted when they were between 16 and 26 years old.
- Most of their assailants were women.
- Most men knew their assailant, and over half were in, or had been in, a relationship with them.
- "The most frequent strategy employed by female perpetrators was the use of blackmail and threats" (i.e. threatening to end the relationship, tell lies about him, or hurt him or someone he cares about).
- Other methods of forcing penetration included continual verbal pressure, getting angry when he said he didn't want to, holding him down with her body weight or other methods of physical restraint, or forcing penetration when he was asleep or intoxicated and unable to give consent.
- " ‘Rape’ was the most frequently used label, with 33 men (29.7%) describing their experience this way." Other labels included "forced sex," and "non-consensual sex." They also provided other labels or didn't offer any label (which may speak to how confusing the experience remained).
- Few of the men sought support for the negative psychological impact of the experience even though 20% rated the negative impact as a 10 on a 1-10 scale. Only a small percentage even told friends or family. And just two reported the incident to the police (none of the cases ended up in court).
You may also be interested in this blog post:
Abuse OF Men By Women Book
For further explanation of each of the ways women sexually abuse their male partners and the other 6 forms of partner abuse, check out my book:
- Tags: abuse OF men BY women
- Ann Silvers