April is Sexual Assault Awareness & Prevention Month. I am taking this moment to re-blog two very important and very personal entries about this topic.
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April is Autism Awareness month. It is important and relevant to me because Clyde is on the Autism Spectrum.
April is ALSO Sexual Assault Awareness and Prevention Month.
I felt the need to write about this because I have been a victim of sexual violence not once, but twice in my lifetime.
I have spoken briefly about the first incident that occurred to me when I was 9. Tonight I am going to talk about incident number two.
I have a disclaimer to make though:
I draw very clear lines in the sand on this topic. I think that no means no means no, and I am more likely to take the side of the victim rather than the accused.
With that being said, I can look at the facts of a situation and state, sometimes we women make terrible choices that allow us to be in terrible positions. At the end of the day though, no still means no.
I entered my first consensual sexual relationship at the age of 18. We had sex 2 days after my 18th birthday. I thought I was in love with him, as many 18 year olds think they are in love. I know now that I was not, but it sure did not feel like it then.
My relationship with this man, Kevin, was my first real relationship, and being the romantic that I have always been, I assumed that it would last forever. It did not, but somethings that occurred during our time together remain with me still.
I left my home for this man, not that I really needed an excuse. The history between Bonnie and I is extensive. I expected that we would make house, live happily ever after and be Mr & Mrs Ward Cleaver.
Instead I realized that he was not a great choice, that he expected me to support him, that his mother would always interfere in our relationship, and that – well at least then – he was not going to do any of the things that I thought a man would do.
I can’t tell you if he has changed, but I can tell you what happened to me.
It was an afternoon and we were at my Aunt Doris’ house where we were living at the time. It was a small over crowded house, but I was too stubborn and too in love to admit that being there was a mistake.
I was in my cousin’s room, I was going through the jobs sector of the local paper. He came into the room. He started clawing at my breasts the way he always did when he was horny and I pushed him away. No I told him I am busy, somebody has to make money to get us out of this situation.
His words to me were, you’re my girl this is your job.
His hands returned. I pushed him away again.
His hands returned more insistent, and I got up to leave.
He grabbed me by the back of my hair and threw me on the bed.
When I tried to get back up, he pushed me down on the bed again.
Then we started fighting.
Like many women that have been in that position though, I was out matched by someone who was bigger and stronger than I was.
Despite my struggles, despite my nos soon he had my pants off, soon he was inside of me pumping.
Soon I stopped fighting hoping that it would eventually be over. With tears in my eyes I lay there, unmoving hoping that my corpse like actions would slow his libido. It did not and he eventually finished, but I never consented to the sex that day.
Was I raped? By the technical definition of the word, yes. I said no and he fucked me anyway. I have never until this post called it rape I have always called it sexual assault.
And I have only rarely called it sexual assault.
I chalked it up to a stupid decision to stay in a relationship with a man who was not good to me.
I was still assaulted though, I said no.
Did I report this assault to anyone? I did not. Did I remain in the relationship? Yes I did, it would be months before I left Kevin. There would be many more times that I consented to sex with Kevin. There would be many times that I didn’t necessarily WANT sex with Kevin but I did it anyhow. Not that afternoon though.
To walk through the head of a victim of sexual assault is something that few people can do, unless you have been assaulted yourself.
I remember every detail of that afternoon, and that attack, and I could describe it in much more vivid detail, but I will not.
To know me now? It would be difficult to imagine a scenario where I stopped fighting and I stopped saying no. No one would think that possible of me. I did not think it possible of me until it happened.
I’d scratched and clawed and wrestled this man and he still over powered me. I said no and cried and begged and told him if he loved me he would stop. He continued. At some point in the middle of it, I realized that no matter what I did, I could not stop this man from fucking me, so I turned myself off trying to shut out the event thinking that I could find a happy place in my head.
When you are being violated, there is no happy place in your head.
I share this story in part for SAAM, but also because on Fetlife in the past few months, I have run across two stories of women who have spoken of being assaulted, and the reaction that these two women got. The women told eerily similar stories, of meeting men, having kinky play with the men, having sexual contact with the men. Both women as they told their stories appeared to indicate that if the man involved had used a condom, they would have been okay with the sexual activity proceeding. Their only ‘gripe’ was that the sex continued and the men did not first put on a condom.
One is a young lady that I know personally. I can not call us friends, but I have met her and I like her. She shared her story and men came to that thread speaking of how juicy her pussy looks, and how they bet she masturbated to the memories of the assault. Women came out of the woodwork to discredit her, and speak of her history with other men. Women that did not know her vilified her.
Do I know if her story is true? I do not. I know that the perception that she wrote of was rape. She did not call it rape, but what else do you call it when someone fucks you without a condom and you insist there be a condom? If you consent to sex with a condom, and say I will not fuck without a condom – is it rape?
Yes it is.
It is rape because you have the right to set the parameters, if you say no to sex without a condom, and the sex happens without a condom, that is not consensual. No consent means rape.
The other woman who shared her story told a similar tale. She even went so far as to describe a point in the act that she stopped saying no. Her story can be found here.
Her story has many MORE grey areas than the first that I read, and I do not know this woman. My position does not change though.
Again this is not a situation where she has called this man she was with a rapist, but again if you have not consented is it anything else?
Like myself, like these women, like thousands of thousands of other women, these are the stories that never get told. These are the stories that do not get reported.
By the time a woman comes to grips with what has been done to her, evidence can no longer be collected, and all those episodes of Law and Order:SVU start popping up in their heads.
By the time a woman finds the strength within her self to move and act it is a word vs. word situation.
What woman is interested in the mental rape that comes from a formal investigation about something they can no longer prove?
There are a few built like that but most of us are not.
I can not honestly say that were this to happen to me today I would be strong enough.
I know that because of WHY I had to switch my GYN office, and it had more to do with what happened to me at my last exam, at the hands of a FEMALE clinician, rather than my physical issues.
That story I did tell right away, to someone who I trusted. Her reaction to my story reminded me of how society views assault and it made me think.
If I tell this story, how much of MY life now goes on trial? How much of my kink becomes open season? How many times will I have to tell the story of how I DO become aroused in the stirrups, but what happened THIS TIMEgoes beyond that.
I got the number for sex crimes, and the complaint form for the state medical board. I thought to myself, I can’t let her do what she did to me to another woman. Then the voice of my friend calling me a stupid bitch rang out in my head and I put the pen down.
I look at the form now, it is to the left of my keyboard. It is still unfinished. I spoke about it with HIM and HE is willing to support me in what ever decision that I make but HE will not make that decision for me.
I still have not made the decision all these months later.
I may never make that decision.
That is what sexual assault and rape can do to a woman. It can take the baddest bitch on the block and turn her into a frightened mouse.
It changes you and your perception and fucks with everything that you know to be true. That is if you are lucky and that is ALL that happens.