Rape-Related Pregnancy and Pregnancy Loss

Deciding What to Do for Men Who've Been Raped, Or Forced to Have Sex with Another Person

As I said on the Home page here, I've written most of this site from a female perspective.  Women report rape and pregnancy more often than men.  But I know men are raped by women too, and pregnancy is sometimes weilded as a weapon.  If this is happening or has happened to you, you're not alone.  I'm very sorry.

If the person who raped you, or someone you were forced to have sex with, has become pregnant as a result, do you have any say in what happens next?

Unfortunately, no, not much.  If she decides to have a termination there's nothing you can do.  This is necessary to stop women being forced to continue unwanted pregnancies.  But it's heart-breaking if you feel a connection with the little one involved, or believe a life is being lost.  I'm not sure how much help it might be, but the section here on Loss is for you too.  My own little ones were taken from me, without my permission.  I know the situation's different, but there are people who care and can understand some of what you're going through.

You may feel relieved.  I did, as well as grieving.  I didn't know how I could cope with having children like that.  It's normal to have mixed feelings.  It's also normal to be confused and traumatized.  If you can get counselling, I recommend it.  It's not easy, but it can really help.  You deserve a space to talk about this and be understood, respected and supported.

What if she decides to keep the child?  Do you have any say in that?  The child support systems might involve you with your rapist.  Is there anything you can do to avoid that?  Child Support services may be able to advise you.

The Child Support system could also give you the opportunity to father your child, if that's what you want to do. You'd need to prove it's in the child's best interests to spend time with you, or be in your sole custody.  It might involve convincing a judge you've been raped and abused.  If you're unable to face that, please be gentle with yourself.  It's a very traumatic thing to do!

If you're unable to take on the role of a father yourself, but you're concerned for the child's safety, remember it's possible to report those concerns so the situation can be investigated.  You can often do this anonymously.  See the People Who Care or Crisis Links page here for information on how to report concerns about children.

If the mother places the child for adoption, you, as the biological father, do have rights.  If the person who raped you, or someone you were forced to have sex with, becomes pregnant, if possible, get some local legal advice.  This is a good idea no matter how you feel about the possible child from this pregnancy.  You may need to make your connection with the child known, since its mother may deny it.  You can read something about your rights in adoption processes here:
A Biological Father's Rights in an Adoption - US
Biological Father's Rights in Adoption - US
Biological Rights for Fathers - Minnesota, US.  There are similiar registers in other US states.  National Directory of Putative Father Registries - US
Birth Father Links and Reading
- US
Ruling Limits Unmarried Biological Father's Rights - Canada
Adoption in Canada FAQ - Birth Fathers
British Columbia's Birth Father Registry
VIC Department of Children Youth and Families - Legal Issues in Adoption
SA Department Families and Communities - Adoption
Children by Choice Australia - Adoption, a Pregnancy Choice
You can find more links to information under Adoption in the Deciding What to Do page here.

If you're in this situation, I strongly suggest talking to a specialist male rape crisis service, like the Service Assisting Male Survivors of Sexual Assault (SAMSSA) if one's available near you.  If not, a general rape crisis service should also help men who've been raped.  You may also find help from organisations like Dads in Distress Australia.  I know enough about SAMSSA to recommend it, but I don't know much about Dads in Distress - you'll have to make your own judgments there.  The Crisis Links page here can help you find local rape crisis services and other men's services and helplines.  They should be able to find you the information you need and refer you to other relevant professionals.

I'm so sorry you're in such a difficult, complex situation, so much outside your own control.  I hope you'll find the help you need and deserve.  You may find that joining an online support group specifically for male survivors or a group with a forum for men, like the Men's Forum at Pandora's Aquarium helps. Other online forums for people who've experienced sexual violence might also help.  This might seem like a never-ending nightmare, but you're stronger than you know, and you can get through it!  

You might find these links about the rape experiences of men useful:
Herodes' Cave Resources for Men and Boys and Books Especially for Male Survivors 
Rape Crisis Information Pathfinder Male Sexual Assault
Pandora's Project: For Male Survivors of Rape and Sexual Abuse

MPower - Support for Men Who Have Been Raped or Sexually Assaulted
Domestic Violence Against Men: Bryan's Story
About Domestic Violence Against Men
Abused Empowered Survive Thrive (AEST) Male on Male Rape - also links to support forums.
Male Rape Support for Gay Men

Hope for Healing Page - Male Rape

If you've lost your child, however they were conceived and however mixed your feelings might be, that loss is real.  Please take very gentle care of yourself.  You might find the page on Loss here helpful.  You might also find that reading the pages In Memory of My Own give you some ideas about how to grieve.  I'm very sorry for your loss.