At the end of my academic semester a month ago now, I was nearly sexually assaulted by another autistic person who I was asked to help by our welfare department. This autistic person is much more autistic than I am so whilst I struggle to read some social signals, for example, he struggles a lot more. Whilst I appreciate that isn’t his fault, what he did to me was unacceptable.
We were just friends in my view and I explained that to him, however he wanted more. He wanted for us to be in a relationship and I made it very clear to him that it wasn’t going to happen as I’m already in one with someone else. He wouldn’t accept it so pushed me onto the bed and started trying to take off my clothes and his clothes. Before things got any further I said to this person “Get off me now and do not touch me or do that ever again! It is completely inappropriate what you have just done.” He then said, if you find that inappropriate how I touch your breasts, so I replied to him saying “Do not touch me anywhere on my body. I made it loud and clear to you we are not in a relationship and you’re not respecting boundaries.”
It was then suggested I went to tell welfare about what happened but all they said was we have to let him off because he’s seriously autistic even though this is in our view close to sexual assault. My friends think that I should report or do something as what happened is not acceptable and that the response of the welfare team is not good enough. Does anyone have any views?
NAS38298 said:they said was we have to let him off because he’s seriously autistic even though this is in our view close to sexual assault.
Everybody NEEDS to know what consent is regardless.. it is not right to violate others or be violated ourselves.
it is not about the other party being let off... they need guidance and support on what is appropriate behaviour and how to deal with recognising consent. In many ways you’ll be helping them and hopefully reduce such circumstances happening again that might get them in trouble.
You have suffered an unacceptable sexual assault. The welfare department asked you to help and placed you in this awkward position, and now they are expecting you to ignore the consequences of their request. To whom do your friends suggest you report the incident to? I would suggest that you take the matter, a line has been crossed that should not have been crossed.
They suggested that I report to the head of academic staff and the wardens as they feel that they may be best placed to do something about it, but my friends then followed up with that if those people won’t listen then it may have to be reported to the police
I think your friends are right. I know it wouldn’t be easy. Will your friends or a friend accompany you to the head of academic staff? Whatever you decide to do, I would suggest that you have nothing to do with your assailant in the future. You have my sympathy, it was a nasty experience and now, through no fault at all of your own, you have to make a decision that the welfare should be making for you. It’s a dereliction of duty on their part.
Yes, I’m pretty sure they will. Thanks for being understanding. Never had an experience like this before and am still slightly shaken by it all.
Such encounters are disturbing and can cause great angst and self doubt, but you stood your ground and you’ve been very brave seeking advice.
You take good care of yourself. You are completely innocent in all this and you deserve credit for reaching out and asking for advice. I you have any furthers questions, just ask.
All the best. Graham
Just to agree with the others, report it. If you are unsure about reporting remember that he will probably do this again and the last next time might not be as strong as you. Please take care of yourself this is a bad thing that you have had to go through,
I am very sorry you have had such a distressing experiencing. Trying to take your clothes off against your will is not acceptable behavior. The comment about touching your breasts comes across as though he knew his behavior was inappropriate but he didn't care.
If you feel that his behavior warrants speaking to the police about this then please do this asap. If you allow this man to get away with such behavior it may only get worse. It sounds like he has no respect for other's boundaries and this could be because he's behaved like this before and gotten away with it.
Going to the Head, as well as the wardens will be useful too. I work in HE and we had a student who started off saying inappropriate comments of a sexual nature to staff, he then started waiting for these staff to finish work and would try to follow them home. He initially received a warning from the head of his department but as his behavior continued he was asked to leave the university to protect the safety of those who worked there. The wardens may be able to keep a closer eye on this young man whilst you wait for the outcome of your complaint.
Have you considered complaining about the member of the welfare team? Their comments do seem to be inappropriate and perhaps their line manager isn't aware of how they responded? Sexual assaults, especially if they happen in halls, should have a strict reporting policy to follow and leaving you on your own to further report this at the university isn't usually part of the policy.
I'm sorry you've had such a ***** experience from your university.
I would suggest you contact the police on 101, the non-emergency number.
Welfare had their chance and blew it, so I would have no confidence that the institution has your best interests at heart - they seem more keen to cover things up because of the situation they put you in?