The data reported in the article describe the attitudes of teenagers to problems concerning sexual violence and aggression. Given the lack of any national systems that could monitor negative factors in the teenage environment, including sexual aggression, special value lies in the data obtained through questionnaires, as these data allow us to evaluate the prevalence of such factors, and they also describe the typical lifestyles of modern Russian teenagers.
The main objective of the study was to describe the age dynamics and gender specifics of teenagers’ attitudes toward the problem of sexual aggression: its prevalence, probable reasons for it, ways of dealing with such situations.
This article is based on data from a research project conducted in 2012 in the Krasnoyarsk region. The research particularly addressed various aspects of schoolchildrens sexual behavior and their attitudes toward sexual violence. The main research method was a paper questionnaire. It was administered to 1,540 children in the 7th, 9th, and 11th grades.
The results showed that every tenth teenager indicated the presence of sexual-violence victims in their circle. According teenagers’ opinions about the reasons for sexual violence the main reasons are “bad luck,” “provocative appearance” “carelessness”. The majority of teenagers will seek help in case of rape.
The answers of teenagers who have sexual experience regarding possible solutions for sexually traumatic situations show their readiness to take responsibility for their behavior and its consequences, as well as for their mental and physical health. In this respect sexual experience can be viewed as an indicator of teenagers’ personal and psychological readiness to lead a grownup life independently of their parents.
To sum up, analyzing schoolchildren’s replies, even to those questions that were not asked directly but in oblique form, allows us to conclude that the teenage environment involves an aggressive (unlawful) component, which usually appears to be a “hidden layer” of interpersonal relations in the microsocial circle of a schoolchild. As a result, the threat of becoming a victim of bullying (ostracism) can block a teenager’s search for help.
Keywords: puberty, prevalence of sexual aggression, reasons for sexual aggression, sup¬port for victims of sexual violence, demographic and socially stratified factors