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Sexual Harassment and its Effects on the Mental Health of the Adolescents School Girls in Lalitpur and Rupandehi District

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  • Sanothimi Campus

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A cross-sectional study was conducted to find the prevalence of mental health on adolescent girl students and the effect of sexual harassment on their mental health: depression, anxiety, and stress. A concurrent mixed method was used and the study was conducted at both community and institutional schools of Lalitpur and Rupendehi districts. A semi-structured questionnaire was used for quantitative data collection along with depression, anxiety and stress score test (DASS -42 points) to measure depression, anxiety, and stress. Focus group discussion (FGD), in-depth interviews (IDI), and key informant information (KII) were used for qualitative data collection. Poor and ill mental health were found among the respondents and the prevalence of depression, anxiety and stress were45%, 52%, and 35% respectively among the sexually harassed girls. As sexual harassment was found as one of the major factors that is responsible for the poor mental health status of girl students, it is necessary for every school to adopt antisexualharassmentpoliciesandtotakeactionagainstittocreateahealthylearningenvironment.
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72Tribhuvan University Journal
Vol. 35, No. 2: 72-88, December, 2020
Research Directorate, Tribhuvan University,
Kathmandu, Nepal
DOI: https://doi.org/10.3126/tuj.v35i2.36192
SEXUAL HARASSMENT AND ITS EFFECTS ON
THE MENTAL HEALTH OF THE ADOLESCENTS
SCHOOL GIRLS IN LALITPUR AND RUPANDEHI
DISTRICT
Kalpana Gyawali
Lecturer, Sanothimi Campus, Bhaktapur, TU.
Corresponding author: gpkalpana81@gmail.com
ABSTRACT
A cross-sectional study was conducted to nd the prevalence of mental
health on adolescent girl students and the effect of sexual harassment on their
mental health: depression, anxiety, and stress. A concurrent mixed method was
used and the study was conducted at both community and institutional schools
of Lalitpur and Rupendehi districts. A semi-structured questionnaire was used
for quantitative data collection along with depression, anxiety and stress score
test (DASS -42 points) to measure depression, anxiety, and stress. Focus group
discussion (FGD), in-depth interviews (IDI), and key informant information (KII)
were used for qualitative data collection. Poor and ill mental health were found
among the respondents and the prevalence of depression, anxiety and stress were
45%, 52%, and 35% respectively among the sexually harassed girls. As sexual
harassment was found as one of the major factors that is responsible for the poor
mental health status of girl students, it is necessary for every school to adopt anti-
sexual harassment policies and to take action against it to create a healthy learning
environment.
Keywords: depression - anxiety - stress - mild - moderate - severe.
INTRODUCTION
Different forms of sexual harassment and violence have been
seen from ancient time as different names such as Devdasi, Apsara, Sati
system, forced child marriage, and less freedom for women in different
holy books of Hindu religions, the higher status of the male monk in
Buddhism women as a way of sin in Christianity and Burka system in
Muslim religions (Mohapatra 2015). Though the term sexual harassment
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TRIBHUVAN UNIVERSITY JOURNAL, VOL. 35, NO. 2, DECEMBER, 2020
became popular only after 1970 (Farley 1978). Various acts are considered
sexual harassment and hard to nd a single most denition. At the
International level, the United Nations General Recommendation 19 to
the Convention on the Elimination of all Forms of Discrimination Against
Women denes sexual harassment including such unwelcome sexually
determined behaviour as physical contact and advances, sexually coloured
remarks, showing pornography and sexual demands, whether by words or
actions. Such conduct can be humiliating and may constitute a health and
safety problem; it is discriminatory when the woman has reasonable ground
to believe that her objection would disadvantage her in connection with
her employment, including recruitment or promotion, or when it creates
a hostile working environment (UN women 2009). Further United States
Merit System Protection Board (USMSB 1985) has categorized sexual
harassment into three groups according to their severity which are; less
severe (unwelcome sexual verbal remarks, suggestive looks and gestures,
and deliberate touching); moderately severe (pressure for dates, pressure
for sexual favours, unwelcome letters, and telephone calls); and most severe
types of sexual harassment (actual or attempted rape or sexual assault and
abuse).
Sexual harassment is not only a physical crime against girls
and women but has been found responsible for their poor physical and
emotional health. Lee et al. (1996) have reported that sexual harassment
can have negative academic, psychological, and behavioural impacts on
the victim. Several studies (Bagley et al. 1997, Jones et al. 2008, & MSI
2008. Rowe 1996) also illustrated the consequences of sexual harassment
on students such as children’s health and safety, enrolment, and educational
achievement and dignity, and social relationships in the victim of sexual
harassment. According to AAUW (2001), nearly half of all the students
who experienced sexual harassment felt very or somewhat upset right after
the harassment. Sexual harassment also has been reported as a detrimental
factor in productivity and performance as well as the psychometric health
of the students (Berman et al. 2000, Dahinten 1999). Hill and Kearl
(2011) reported similar effects in an American school where 22% of girls
felt trouble sleeping and 37% of girls did not go to school. Similarly,
Anderson (2011) has reported that nearly half of the girls of the grade 7 to
12 experienced sexual harassment in the USA and 87 % of the girls who
74
are harassed reported negative effects such as absenteeism, insomnia, and
stomach-ache. Girls are suffering from sexual violence and harassment in
schools also found with poor health status and as well as has poor education
achievement (Anderson 2011, Hill & Kearl 2011, Okeke 2011, Plan 2008).
Similarly, according to, Crick and Bigbee, (1998) children who persistently
are victimized by sexual harassment and violence suffer from higher levels
of depression, anxiety, and loneliness in comparison to non-victimized
children. The above-mentioned studies indicated that sexual harassment
has been found as a causative factor of major social and mental health
problems on victims. According to the World Health Organization (WHO
2004), mental health is a state of well-being in which the individual realizes
his or her abilities, can cope with the normal stresses of life, can work
productively and fruitfully, and can make a contribution to his or her.
In Nepalese context also, girl students are likely to be sexually
harassed by different persons at different places (Gyawali et al. 2012, Mishra
& Lamichane 2018, Thapalia et al. 2020). Though many international
studies excavated the negative effects of sexual harassment on mental
health situations, in the Nepalese context it has not been studied well in
relation to the present context. Hence, this study is intended to explore the
effects of sexual harassment on mental health with mental health problems
of adolescent girl students (teenage) and the result of this study would be
useful for schools to create an ideal place for study to girl students by which
they can achieve their objectives to be educated and healthy citizen.
METHODOLOGY
The research design used in the study was the concurrent mixed-
method (Creswell 2014). The sample size for quantitative data has been
calculated at a 95% condence level with a 5% condence interval and
the sample size was 371 from Lalitpur and 402 from Rupandehi district.
Adolescent girl students of both public and institutional schools from
two districts (Lalitpur and Rupandehi) were selected for the study. For
qualitative data collection, focus group discussion (FGD), key informants’
interviews (KII), and in-depth interviews (IDI) were conducted. IBM
SPSS 20 software was used for quantitative data analysis and the test of
independence among variables was carried out with the Chi-square test.
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For qualitative data, IDI, KII, and voices of FGDs have been transcribed.
Findings of quantitative data have been triangulated with the ndings of
qualitative data wherever possible.
The situation of mental health effects (depression, anxiety, and
stress) was measured with the help of the Depression, Anxiety, Stress
Scale (DASS) (Lovibond & Lovibond 1995). The DASS is a 42-item
questionnaire that includes three self-report scales designed to measure the
negative emotional states of depression, anxiety, and stress and found helpful
in ruling out cases with an anxiety disorder or depression in a population
with mental health problems (Nieuwenhuijsen et al. 2003). DASS has been
found reliable and valid scales for assessing clients and has been tested its
validity and reliability (Afzali et al. 2007, Basha & Kaya 2016, Tran et
al. 2013). The other perceived effects of mental health due to the sexual
harassment of girl students were measured with structured questionnaires.
RESULTS AND DISCUSSION
Situations of depression, stress, and anxiety level on sexually harassed
girl students
Different levels of mental illness (depression, stress, and anxiety)
were observed on adolescent girl students due to sexual harassment. Among
those three mental illnesses, 45% of students were suffering from some
degree of depression (Table 1), and within the different depression levels,
31 percent were having mild to moderate levels of depression while 14%
were severe to extremely severe levels. In contrary to sexually harassed
girls, the prevalence of depression level was lower (16%) in those girls who
have not felt sexual harassment in comparison to sexually harassed ones
(45%). The extremely severe level of depression was only found among
the girls who had been sexually harassed. Similarly, mild to extreme level
of depression was found higher in institutional school and also at Lalitpur
district visa-vies compared to community schools and Rupandehi district
respectively.
76
Table 1: Mental health status of girl students
Mental health status on
sexually harassed girls
Mental health according to
school type
Mental health according to school
location
Yes No Community Institutional Lalitpur Rupandehi
Level
of Depression
Normal 55%(376) 84%(72) 65%(272) 50%(176) 49%(181) 67%(267)
Mild and moderate 31%(215) 13%(11) 25%(107) 34%(119) 33%(112) 26%(104)
Severe and extremely severe 14%(95) 3%(3) 10%(40) 16%(58) 18%(68) 7%(30)
Chi square value 26.4*** 19.01*** 29.5***
P0 0.0001 0
Level of Stress
Normal 65% (441) 87% (75) 73% (305) 60% (211) 58% (214) 75% (302)
Mild and moderate 25%(173) 12%(10) 22%(94) 25%(89) 26%(96) 22%(87)
Severe and Extremely severe 10%(72) 1%(1) 5%(20) 15%(53) 16%(16) 3%(12)
Chi-square value 19 26.7 47.24
P0.0001*** 0*** 0***
Level of
Anxiety
Normal 48%(327) 78%(67) 55%(229) 47%(165) 47%(173) 55%(221)
Mild and moderate 34%( 237) 19%(16) 28%(113) 34%(120) 32%(118) 34%(135)
Severe and Extremely severe 18%(122) 3%(3) 13%(57) 19%(68) 21%(80) 11%(45)
Chi square value 29.26*** 8.79** 16.21***
P0 0.012 0.0003
Note: Value in the parenthesis indicates the number of respondents.
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TRIBHUVAN UNIVERSITY JOURNAL, VOL. 35, NO. 2, DECEMBER, 2020
In the case of stress level, 35% of the respondents were suffering
from a different level of stress and among them, 25% of the students were
suffering from a mild to moderate level of stress while 10% of the students
were suffering from a severe to the extreme level of stress, and 2% students
were suffering from an extremely severe level of stress. It was observed
that among the respondents who had not experienced sexual harassment
the stress at a different level was lower that is only 13% of them had
stress problems in comparison to 35% in the case of sexually harassed girl
students (Table 1).
The situation of anxiety level was higher among sexually harassed
girls. Among respondents, 52% of the students were at a different level of
anxiety (mild to extremely severe) and it was found that 35% of them were
at a mild to moderate level of anxiety and other hands 18% the respondents
were found suffering from severe to extremely severe level of anxiety
(Table 1).
The prevalence of different levels of depression, stress, and anxiety
(mild to extremely severe) were found higher at Lalitpur district and in the
girl students of the institutional school as compared to Rupandehi district
and community school respectively. The difference in the prevalence of
different level of depression, stress, and anxiety among the girl students
were also statistically signicant at 0.001% signicant level (Table 1).
Among the three mental health parameters, anxiety was the most
common type of mental problem in the girl students in comparison to
depression and stress (Figure 1), and the girls with stress levels were lesser
than anxiety and depression. The highest level of depression was seen in
Lalitpur district. The stress was the highest among the
sexually harassed girls and the anxiety was the highest at Lalitpur
district among the girls from institutional schools. The lowest level of
depression, stress, and anxiety were found among the girl students who do
not have suffered from sexual harassment (Figure 1).
According to the Focus Group Discussion, participants reported
that they felt fear, depression, irritation, frustration, tension, humiliation,
and sleeping disorder. Sexual harassment was the major cause of the mental
health effects that were caused by teachers, friends (boys), relatives, and
strangers. There are some remarks by the respondents which are as follows.
78
45
16
35
50 51
33
52
23
45
53 53
45
35
13
27
40 42
25
0
20
40
60
80
100
120
140
160
Sexually
harassed
Non harassed Community
School
Institutional
School
Lalitpur Rupandehi
% of girls with depression, anxiety and stress
Depression Anxiety Stress
Figure 1: Percentage of girl students having depression, anxiety, and stress
(mild to extremely severe level)
When I see that teacher, who always tries to do harass me my body
starts shaking and my legs become imbalanced and weak. I feel fear hoping
that he would not touch me again, brush with my body again, and in the
future too (FGD 5, Lalitpur, Community, R.N.5, Dalit).
When the teacher started sexually harassing me, my legs were
trembling, and started sweating from my body which made me weak and
fearful for many days. When I still think about that event, I feel fear and
my body starts freezing. If I remember that event at night, it is hard to sleep
properly (IDI -G, Lalitpur, institutional, Janjati).
I feel tension and depression because of boys’ harassing behaviours,
sometimes when I think about their behaviours I became sad and want to
cry and we have study stress as well (FGD 6, Lalitpur, Institutional, R.N.
3, Janajati).
I had shared my problem with my mom but she said that our uncle
had done much helps for us so she requested me to be silent and safe.
But I was depressed and fear of his sexual harassment (IDI -H, Lalitpur,
Community, Janjati).
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I felt fear and depressed about my brother in law’s (Bhinaju) sexual
assaulting behaviour. In the beginning, it was hard to sleep properly because
of that sexual assault (IDI-D, Rupandehi, Institutional, Dalit).
There was a teacher for lower secondary classes in our school.
Once a group of girl students complained us about him and they said that he
was doing sexual harassing behaviours with them. They were also looking
frightened and nervous during that time. After that, we initiated the process
to transfer him and now he is not in this school. Now we have not any such
complaints from girls (KII, school head teacher, Rupandehi).
According to qualitative data also exposed that schoolgirls are
suffering from different types of mental health effects, where sexual
harassment is a major cause behind sexual harassment but they also suffered
from learning pressure as well.
Perceived effects on mental health among adolescent girl students from
different offenders
The adolescent girl students were sexually harassed by the different
offenders (teachers/school staff; male peers &friends; & neighbours and
relatives). Due to such harassment, different types of mental illness and
problems in students’ academic and social performance were reported at
different levels.
Table 2: Different types of mental health effects with the level of girl
students due to sexual harassment by teacher/school staff
Response Fear Depressed Irritation
Never 19%(69) 14%(52) 33%(116)
Sometime 44%(162) 34%(128) 37%(132)
Often to very often 37%(138) 52%(192) 30%(108)
Total (369) (372) (356)
χ2= 57.4***, P=0
Note: Multiple responses case 372; Value in the parenthesis represents the number
of respondents.
In the study majority of the respondents shared that they mainly
felt fear and depression than irritation due to the sexual harassment from
teachers. According to the data, 81%, 86%, and 77% of the adolescent girl
students were feeling depression, fear, and irritation respectively due to
the sexual harassment of them by the teachers’/ school staff (Table 2) and
80
the relationship between the types of mental health effects and its level
(frequency) on the respondents were signicantly dependent at 0.001%
level (χ2= 57.4, P<0.001).
During the focus group discussion, participants reported that
fear, depression, irritation, frustration, tension, humiliation, and sleeping
disorder were the common mental problems that they felt due to sexual
harassment by the teacher on the frequency of “sometimes to frequently”.
Among different types of mental health effects, fear was the most common
type due to the sexual harassment by the teachers. Following are a few
opinions from the participants about their feeling and experiences due to
sexual harassment by their teachers are as below:
I feel fear when I see a harassing teacher in the classroom and
I cannot ask any questions and communicate with him because of his
behaviours (FGD 1, Rupandehi, Community, R.N.5, Disadvantaged
Janajati).
When I encounter the teacher who harasses us sexually, that time
my body starts to vibrate and I could not stand properly because my legs
become imbalanced, and weak. At that time, I assume that he would again
harass me sexually at this time too. (FGD 5, Lalitpur, Community, R.N.5,
Dalit).
My legs were trembling and sweating started from my body when I
saw that bad teacher and it used to make me fear for many days and I used
to be mentally weak. Even today, I feel fear when I remember that painful
event. (IDI -G, Lalitpur, institutional, Janjati).
In the previous school, she was feeling fear, afraid and she did not
have the interest to go to that school due to the sexual harassment by the
teacher. Due to that reason, we changed her school and nowadays in the
new school she is feeling better (KII, Parents of IDI- G, Lalitpur).
These results from quantitative and qualitative data illustrated that
sexual harassment by teachers is a big factor responsible to create mental
problems like fear, depression, and irritation in girl students. Similarly,
adolescent girls have been feeling such types of bad emotion frequently.
Statistically, different levels of mental health effects on girl students due
to sexual harassment by the teachers were found signicantly different
according to the types of effects.
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Perceived mental health effect on the student due to the sexual
harassment by peers and friends
The level of negative effects on the mental health of adolescent girl
students that they supposed to happen to them due to the sexual harassment
from peers and friends, were also analyzed. In course of analysis, it was
found that the occurrence of the depressed, fear, and irritation were major
perceived mental health problems that the respondents feel due to the sexual
harassment of them by their male peer and friends and it was 87%, 89%,
and 75% respectively (Table 3).
Table 3: Different types and level of perceived mental health effects on girl
students due to sexual harassment by peers/friends
Level of mental
health effect
Types of mental health effects
Feeling fear Feeling
Depressed
Feeling
Irritation
Never 13%(67) 11%(57) 25%(129)
Sometimes 43%(224) 43%(221) 34%(173)
Often to very often 44%(227) 46%(242) 41%(212)
Total (518) (520) (514)
χ2= 46.1 ***, P=0
Note: Multiple responses case 520; Value in the parenthesis represents the number
of respondents.
The relationship between the types of mental health effects and
its level (frequency) on the respondents due to the sexual harassment by
peers/ friends was found signicantly dependent at 0.001% level (χ2= 46.1,
P<0.001).
In course of qualitative data collection, participants reported
that they felt depressed, irritated, frustrated, and tense, and humiliated
because of peer’s sexual harassment. During the focus group discussion,
72 participants who were sexually harassed said that they felt depressed
and humiliated because of peers sexual harassment. Some experiences of
the girls which were expressed in focus group discussion were as follows:
One of my male friends used to harass and that used to make me
depressed and sad. We feel humiliation when boys start harassing us. It
makes us upset and makes us cry (FGD 5, Lalitpur, Community, R.N. 2,
Janajati).
82
I feel bored, depressed, and want to cry alone when I remember
those misbehaviours and sexual harassment of boys to me on the way to and
fro school (FGD 7, Lalitpur, Institutional, R.N. 1 Dalit).
I feel humiliated and angry and scold to god that he punishes us by
making us women. It makes me cry and I weep lonely (FGD 10, Rupandehi,
Community, R.N.6, Madeshi).
Analysis from the quantitative data and the verbatim of the
adolescent girl students, it was found that the sexual harassment by peers
and friends was responsible for creating depression, irritation, and fear on
the girl students that is ultimately the crating poor mental health on the
respondents.
Perceived mental health effect on the student due to the sexual
harassment by neighbors/relatives
The girl students also had different types of mental health effects
due to sexual harassment by neighbours and relatives at different levels
(frequency). In course of the data analysis, the effects on social activities,
creative activities, feeling fear, and depression were 76%, 70%, 84%, and
85% of total respondents on a “Sometimes to Very often” basis respectively
due to the sexual harassment by relatives and neighbour (Table 4).
Table 4: Different types and level of mental health effects on girl students
due to sexual harassment by neighbour and relatives
Level of mental
health effect
Types of mental health effects
Social
activities
Creative
activities
Feeling
fear Depressed
Never 24% (139) 30% (175) 16% (
93) 15% (89)
Sometime 45% (263) 41% (237) 48%
(280)
43%
(250)
Often to very
often 31% (183) 29% (165) 36%
(207)
42%
(241)
Total (585) (577) (580) (580)
χ2 = 60.75***, P=0
Note: Multiple response cases 580; Value in parenthesis represents the number of
respondents.
During the chi-square test, the relationship between the types of
mental health effects and its level (frequency) on the respondents due to the
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TRIBHUVAN UNIVERSITY JOURNAL, VOL. 35, NO. 2, DECEMBER, 2020
sexual harassment by neighbour and relatives was signicantly dependent
at 0.001% level (χ2= 60.75, P=0.001).
In focus group discussion and in-depth interview (IDI) during the
qualitative study, the participants shared that they felt fear, humiliation,
and depression due to the sexual harassment by relatives and neighbours.
Following are the representative verbatim of the adolescent girl students
about their perception due to the sexual harassment by their relatives and
neighbour.
My uncle used to sexually harass me at my home. After some time,
I shared my problem with my mom but she said that he had done much
helps for us so she asked me to be silent and try to be safe by myself. I could
not cope with the situation normally and I was depressed and was feeling
fear with his (IDI -H, Lalitpur, Community, Janjati).
Once, my sister-in-law tried to sexually assault and rape me in a
hotel in a nearby town. It made me very depressed, feared, and insecure.
After that incident, it became hard for me to sleep properly and concentrate
on my study, and now I am trying to forget that black history and trying
to make me strong. Still, it is very difcult to recover (IDI-D, Rupandehi,
Institutional, Dalit).
There is a mature man in our area and when we walk along the
way he makes a whistle and gaze in our body and mostly, he drinks alcohol
too. Due to his behaviour, we feel fear to walk along the street. (FGD 8,
Lalitpur, Community, R.N. 6, Janjati).
My daughter complained me about the sexual harassment which
she got from my husband's brother. Because of his bad behaviour; she
was feeling depressed, nervous, and frightened. As it was from my family
member, I could not say anything to the perpetrators and I was compelled to
keep such crime within two-person that was me and my daughter. I am also
feeling bad in this context (KII, Parent of the victim, Lalitpur,).
The analyses of quantitative and qualitative data also showed that
sexual harassment by neighbours and relatives was responsible for creating
mental health effects on girl students.
From all the above-mentioned results from the quantitative and
qualitative data analysis, the prevalence of depression, anxiety, and stress
was found among the adolescent girl’s students. The DASS test showed that
45% of the girl students who were sexually harassed by different persons,
84
were suffering from depression, 35% of the students were suffering from
different levels of stress and 52% of the girl students had different level of
anxiety. The depression anxiety and stress level were predominant in the
adolescent girl students from both community and institutional schools as
well as in Lalitpur and Rupandehi districts too. Among the different levels
of depression, stress, and anxiety, a mild to moderate level of negative
effects were prevalent whereas cases of the extreme level of depression,
stress, and anxiety were relatively lower (less than 5%).
Not only in this study but sexual harassment was pointed out as
one of the causes behind negative effects on victim’s mental health effect
on different national and international studies (Richman et al. 1999,
Rospenda et al. 2009). Sexual harassment was also found as a factor of
negative mental health in the form of depression, anxiety, and stress in
nurses of public hospitals too (Mushtaq, Sultana and Imtiaz 2015). Some
researchers (Bagley et al. 1997, Jones et al. 2008, MSI 2008, Rowe 1996)
also illustrated the negative consequences of sexual harassment to students
such as children’s health and safety, enrolment, and learning achievement
dignity, and self-esteem. Fredrickson and Roberts (1997) mentioned that
the outcomes of chronic stress which is also one of the reported outcomes
of harassment called chronic unexpected stress (CUS) which increased
inammation in several brain areas on the victim. Hence, sexual harassment
is not only seen as a social crime but also has very severe effects on human
physical and mental health that was found responsible to increase the stress,
anxiety, depression to reduce the condence, creativity internal capacity of
the victim. The effect of sexual harassment was found higher in the case
of anxiety in our context too. In a focus group, discussion and in-depth
interview participants shared that they felt fear, irritation, and depression
because of sexual harassment that happened by their peers/friends, teachers,
and relatives.
Along with the depression, anxiety, and stress, different other types
of mental problem such as fear, irritation, frustration, tension, humiliation,
and sleeping problem (insomnia) were mentioned by the participants during
qualitative inquiry due to sexual harassment by teachers, peers/friend and
relatives/neighbour. These types of mental illness due to sexual harassment
were reported in many international studies too. MIS (2008) reported that
68% of the girl students felt very or somewhat upset by sexual harassment
along with 57% of the girl students reported feeling self-conscious or
embarrassed and 55% of the girl students reported feeling angry. Anderson
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(2011) and Hill and Kearl (2011) also reported poor emotional effects on
girl students due to sexual harassment and reported that nearly half of the
girls in the USA and 87 % of the girls who were also having negative mental
effects, such as absenteeism, poor sleep, and stomach-ache. In the Nepalese
context, the rate of prevalence of sexual harassment and its negative effect
on the mental health of adolescent girl students has similar effects but the
minor differences might be due to our cultural ethics, social systems, and
traditional values where the girls usually hesitated to express their problems
due to fear of victim-blaming in society. In Nepalese culture, it is common
to keep secret the sexual harassment cases by the victim within herself
forcefully might be due to fear of victim blaming and poor hope of justice.
Such suppression of torture and pains of sexual harassment might the causes
behind the mental ill-health on the adolescent girl students in Nepal.
CONCLUSIONS
Mental illness status was found among the adolescent girl students
who were suffered from sexually harassed and it was also found as one of the
responsible factor in reducing mental health status that is depression, anxiety
and stress on the victim. Similarly, girls were also feeling fear, frustration,
irritation, and insomnia in their daily life due to the sexual harassment by
teachers, male class friends, and relatives. Such misbehaviours against
on them might affect their physical health and educational performance
along with their poor mental health status. As school is considered as the
temple of learning and students come there to learn required knowledge
and skill to be a capable and good citizen in future. Hence, for a better
learning environment, there should smooth and harassment free learning
environment so that students can explore their capacity to be efcient
citizens of the nation.
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