Ways of Looking at Sexual Misconduct

Sexual misconduct is a term that is gaining traction, especially in the media these days, yet most people don’t know what it constitutes or how to deal with it. It’s one reason why many victims still can’t come forward regarding sexual misconduct, especially in the workplace environment. Frankly, there are many grey areas in this vice, but in this article, we will dissect more into what’s sexual misconduct and what you ought to know about it.

1. What is sexual misconduct?

For starters, sexual misconduct refers to any unwelcome behavior of a sexual nature that involves sexual assault, sexual harassment, rape, relationship violence, and stalking, among others. It is typically committed without the consent but instead through manipulation, coercion, intimidation, or force. An individual of any gender can undertake sexual misconduct.

The intensity of sexual misconduct varies in severity, and it can be between people of the same gender or opposite gender. It can also occur between acquaintances, strangers, or even people involved in a sexual relationship.

2. What does criminal sexual misconduct mean?

It is a crime in many states to engage in a sex act with an asleep, unconscious, involuntarily constrained, or intoxicated person because they cannot give consent. Because of the nature of this criminal sexual misconduct, different states have laws and statutes to address this problem.

Sexual misconduct means any advances of a sexual nature directed towards an individual without their consent. The most important thing is the person’s approval of the sexual activities. Consent is an affirmative communication of a person’s willingness to participate in sexual activity. Words or actions can express it.

3. Sexual assault

Sexual assault refers to when an individual attempts to or engage in sexual contact with another person by threat, force, coercive conduct, or force without that person’s affirmative consent. Sexual assault can include:

  • Rape
  • Marital rape
  • Attempted rape
  • Abusive sexual contact
  • Sodomy (forced anal or oral sex)
  • Sexual contact with children
  • Incest
  • Unwanted touching (on top of or under clothing)
  • Deliberate contact with an individual’s sexual organs

4. Sexual assault statistics in the U.S.

  • Sometimes in their life, one woman in five will be raped
  • At least 51% of the women who were raped by their significant other
  • Another 40% of these women got raped by someone they knew
  • At least one in 71 men will be raped sometime in their lifetime
  • Women are 91% of rape victims while men account for the other 9%
  • Of the rapes, 8% happen in the workplace

5. #MeToo sexual harassment, sexual assault, and abuse misconduct

Today #MeToo is a significant movement using Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter to address sexual harassment and sexual assault and abuse. People are telling their stories about what happened to them. The stories are from the victim’s childhoods, teens, and adulthood. Many of the stories are hard to hear! Many of the people who were responsible for these acts were:

  • Family members
  • Church members
  • Coworkers
  • Employer’s
  • Strangers
  • Neighbors and many more

The #MeToo movement has encouraged people throughout the country to come forward and get their stories on the record. People are paying attention now more than at any time in the past.

6. Sexual exploitation

In sexual exploitation, an offender engages in the non-consensual or abusive sexual advantage of another person. Forms of sexual exploitation include:

  • Sending inappropriate sexual content via electronic media
  • Exposing a person’s body parts without their consent
  • Video or audio taping of sexual activity
  • Distributing of someone nudes photos without their consent
  • Knowingly transmitting STI or STDs
  • prostituting another person
  • Invasion of sexual privacy.

7. Stalking

Stalking is a form of sexual misconduct that entails engaging in any behavior that would cause another individual to fear for their safety or suffer emotional distress. The staking can be direct, indirect, or through a third party. Stalkers can act through monitors, devices, surveillance, or threats. It might include:

  • Following someone without their knowledge or consent
  • Monitoring or observing an individual
  • Trespassing into a person’s residence or place of work
  • Engaging in any unwelcome contact.

8. What’s considered sexual activity?

Sexual activity is an action that induces sexual arousal and can be between two persons and a group. The sexual activity involving one person is known as a solitary activity, while the one that includes more than one person is a socio-sexual activity. The significant themes in sexual misconduct involve:


This is where the victims feel they are at the mercy of an individual more powerful than they are, and lack of submission might result in negative consequences.


Where violence happens, especially in cases where individuals are involved in a romantic relationship. An example would be rape in cases where the people are married.


Even though rape is a violation of the law, many people fail to report the rape. There are lots of reasons why rape goes unreported. Here are some examples:

  • The victim is blamed for the rape
  • The victim feels they won’t be believed.
  • People will ask why you were in that location during that time of night?
  • You will be asked why were you dressing the way you were?

9. Intimidation

Intimidation is a theme that arises in sexual misconduct since it is a technique that offenders use in incidences such as sexual assault or sexual harassment. Sexual assault and sexual rape assault is a severe violation of the law covered under 10 U.S. Code 920, Art. 120.

If you are in immediate danger of being sexually assaulted, call 911. If you need help over the phone, call 1-800-656-HOPE (4673).

National Sexual Assault Telephone Hotline (RAINN)


Sexual misconduct is widespread in society at workplaces and even in the streets, but most people remain silent about it. The victims are majorly reluctant to speak up due to the consequences of reporting, such as loss of job and sometimes threats on their life. Solutions such as education, awareness of sexual misconduct, and the likes can help reduce the prevalence as well as enable victims to speak out against sexual misconduct.


Select the best answer: People responsible for acts of sexual assault, sexual harassment, and abuse include all of the following except:

  1. Strangers.
  2. Employer’s.
  3. Coworkers.
  4. Family members.
  5. Small children.

Answer key: See #MeToo sexual harassment, sexual assault, and abuse misconduct.

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