What is military sexual trauma (MST)?
Military sexual trauma, or MST, is the term used by VA to refer to experiences of sexual assault or sexual
harassment experienced during military service.
More concretely, MST includes any sexual activity that you are involved with against your will. Examples
• Being pressured into sexual activities (such as with threats of
negative treatment if you refuse to cooperate or promises of
better treatment in exchange for sex)
• Sexual contact or activities without your consent, including when
you were asleep or intoxicated
• Being overpowered or physically forces to have sex
• Being touched or grabbed in a sexual way that made you uncomfortable, including during hazing
• Comments about your body or sexual activities that you found threatening
• Unwanted sexual advances that you found threatening
The identity or characteristics of the perpetrator, whether you were on or off duty at the time, and
whether you were on or off base at the time do not matter.
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