Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

1/7/2014 (1 year ago)

Catholic Online (

Definition of sexual assault includes unwanted kissing, hugging

While sex among teenagers has been widely documented, non-consensual sex - or sexual assault, which is defined as broadly as unwanted kissing, touching and hugging has not been that widely studied. A new study has found that nearly one in 10 young Americans between the ages 14 and 21 acknowledges having perpetrated an act of sexual violence at least once. Four percent of a nationally representative sample of American kids reported attempting or completing rape.

Researchers asked participants whether they had ever engaged in a wide range of behaviors, including kissing, touching, making an unwilling partner do something sexual or coercing or forcing someone who did not want to have sex to do so. Surprisingly, girls are not always the victims.

Researchers asked participants whether they had ever engaged in a wide range of behaviors, including kissing, touching, making an unwilling partner do something sexual or coercing or forcing someone who did not want to have sex to do so. Surprisingly, girls are not always the victims.


By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Catholic Online (

1/7/2014 (1 year ago)

Published in Marriage & Family

Keywords: Sexual assault, teenagers, study, rape

LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - While those most likely to report initiating unwanted sexual contact in their early to mid-teens were boys, surprisingly girls were among the perpetrators as the age of respondents increased. Also surprisingly, Latino and African American youths, and those from low-income families, were less likely to have coerced another person to engage in sex than were whites and those from higher-income families, the study found.

The study turns on its head, at least partially, long-held, popular beliefs that rape and sexual coercion are often perpetrated by the poor, people of color, and males. It suggests there is considerable difference between what we think is happening and what is really happening in the world of teenage sexual activity. The reality is even worse.

In addition, the viewing of pornographic materials, specifically those depicting physical harm in a sexual context was notably more common than it was among youths who did not report efforts to coerce or force someone else to engage in sex.

As recently published in JAMA Pediatrics, the study appears to be first to study how widespread sexual violence is among Americans of high-school and college age.

The study consisted of surveys conducted between October 2010 and March 2012 with 1,058 people ages 14 to 21 who participated in a broader longitudinal study called "Growing up with Media."

Researchers asked participants whether they had ever engaged in a wide range of behaviors, including kissing, touching, making an unwilling partner do something sexual or coercing or forcing someone who did not want to have sex to do so. This is generally all defined as sexual violence.

Eight percent of those responding, 84 of 1,058 respondents reported they had kissed, touched or made someone else do something sexual when they knew the person did not want to do. About three percent reported they had gotten someone else to give in to sex when the perpetrator knew the other person did not want to, defined as "coercive sex."

Three percent of the teenage respondents acknowledged attempting rape, meaning that he or she had been unable to force someone else to have sex. Two percent, a total of 18 individuals said they had forced another person to have sex when they knew the person did not want to, a completed rape.

Arguing, pressuring, getting angry or making someone feel guilty, were most commonly reported by those who acknowledged attempted or completed rape. Seventy-five percent of the cases of sexual violence occurred in the context of a boyfriend-girlfriend relationship. Ten of the respondents, less than one percent acknowledged having threatened or used physical force to get someone to engage in sex.

Houston, we have a problem!

Pope Francis calls for your 'prayer and action'...


Pope Francis: end world hunger through 'Prayer and Action'

Copywriter 2015 - Distributed by THE NEWS CONSORTIUM

Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for October 2015
That human trafficking, the modern form of slavery, may be eradicated.
Evangelization: That with a missionary spirit the Christian communities of Asia may announce the Gospel to those who are still awaiting it.


More Marriage & Family

'Baby Jesus': Crying newborn discovered abandoned in church nativity scene Watch

Image of


A newborn baby was found abandoned in a New York church nativity scene. Just hours after entering the world, the church's custodian discovered the full-term infant wrapped in purple towels crying in the Queens' Holy Child Jesus Church's nativity scene. LOS ANGELES, CA ... continue reading

Couple heartbroken after doctor performs abortion without mother's consent Watch

Image of Dr. Rifaat Salem is being sued for malpractice after implanting the wrong embryo into a woman, then aborting it without the mother's consent (KTLA).


When David and Melissa Pineda had trouble conceiving, they turned to Dr. Rifaat Salem for fertility treatment. Following the implantation of embryos, Melissa was called in for a check up. What she wasn't told was that she had been implanted with a stranger's embryos ... continue reading

5 unbelievable times children taught us to be better human beings Watch

Image of People aren't born cold-hearted. They learn how to respond to situations from their friends, family and society as a whole.


Children are bundles of energy and their perspective are so new and original we can't help but be surprised by what comes out of their mouths -but what about their actions? LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - There are thousands of children around the world who offer ... continue reading

'Bring Back the Holidays' campaign promotes family values Watch

Image of T.J. Maxx, Marshalls and HomeGoods came together to launch a Bring Back the Holidays campaign.


T.J. Maxx, Marshalls and HomeGoods have joined forces to launch a "Bring Back the Holidays" campaign to support family time around the holidays. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Each year companies compete to provide the best Black Friday "door-buster" sales earlier ... continue reading

7-year-old shows compassion to hate-crime victims in touching act of kindness Watch

Image of Seven-year-old Jack Swanson donated his piggy bank to the Islamic Center of Pflugerville in Texas following hate crime (KXAN).


Following a hate crime at a Texas mosque that involved smeared feces and torn pages from the Koran, seven-year-old Jack Swanson decided to donate his life savings of $20 to help. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - The hate crime included torn pages from the Koran and ... continue reading

The shocking thing a New Jersey mall is doing this year with Santa Watch

Image of Cherryhill Village Mall has gone from offering children free sits on Santa's lap to charging $35-50 for photo and video packages, with no 'free' option.


Cherryhill Village Mall, located in southern New Jersey, has decided to offer photo and video packages for families who bring their children to see Santa. The catch? Families must pay an entrance fee of $35-50, with no free option for those with children who don't want ... continue reading

Mother's heart breaks when 3-year-old ginger son asks 'Why don't people like my horrible hair Mummy?' Watch

Image of Noah Gilbert, 3, was bullied on a public bus for having red hair (Mercury Press).


Southampton mother, Lauren Russel, witnessed her 3-year-old son being bullied by teenagers over the color of his hair. Furious and heart-broken, Russel took to Facebook to write an emotional message asking users to spread awareness of bullying and to show her son that ... continue reading

Blind 7-year-old banned from using walking cane at school Watch

Image of Seven-year-old Lily-Grace Hooper was told she could not use her walking cane at school, despite being blind (David Hedges).


A Brussels primary school banned a blind seven-year-old girl from using her walking cane at school in a shocking move after claiming she could trip other students or teachers. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Lily-Grace Hooper had a stroke when she was only ... continue reading

Toddler burned to death in oven: Shocking story of severe neglect Watch

Image of J'zyra Thompson was found burned to death near the oven in her home, where she was left unsupervised with three siblings ages three to five (Facebook).


In a heart-breaking and gross display of child endangerment, 19-month-old J'zyra Thompson was found burned to death near the stove in her home Tuesday morning.  LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Thompson was left alone with three siblings aged three to ... continue reading

UPDATE: Two policemen shoot and kill Autistic boy strapped in carseat Watch

Image of Jeremy Mardis, 6, was shot and killed by two officers who did not know the boy was strapped in the front seat of his father's vehicle (Facebook).


An eyewitness has come forward to describe the encounter between Christopher Few and the murder of his 6-year-old son, Jeremy Mardis, at the hands of Marksville officers. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Mark Jeansonne, Few's attorney, viewed bodycam footage from ... continue reading

All Marriage & Family News


Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Subscribe to Catholic OnlineYouTube Channel

the FEED
by Catholic Online

  • The Miracle Prayer HD Video
  • Prayer For Courage HD Video
  • BIGGER THAN ISIS - There's a hidden power behind ISIS and it's so big ...
  • Daily Readings for Sunday, November 29, 2015
  • President likens Syrian refugees to pilgrims on Mayflower in ...
  • Who Needs Advent? I do!
  • St. Saturninus: Saint of the Day for Sunday, November 29, 2015

Daily Readings

Reading 1, Jeremiah 33:14-16
14 "Look, the days are coming, Yahweh declares, when I shall fulfil the ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 25:4-5, 8-9, 10, 14
4 DIRECT me in your ways, Yahweh, and teach me your paths.5 ... Read More

Gospel, Luke 21:25-28, 34-36
25 'There will be signs in the sun and moon and stars; on earth nations ... Read More

Reading 2, First Thessalonians 3:12--4:2
12 May the Lord increase and enrich your love for each other and for all, ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for November 29th, 2015 Image

St. Saturninus
November 29: St. Saturninus Bishop of Toulouse and Martyr ... Read More