“I hate how the phrase ‘have some self respect’ is used to shame women who are comfortable with their sex lives. ‘Have some self respect’? I do respect myself, that’s why I wanna have a fucking orgasm tonight, thank you very much.”—Unknown (via suburbanangst)
“Sex-negative messages don’t keep people from having sex. They keep people from having good sex. They keep people from having pride in their sexuality, from sexual self-awareness. They keep people from asking questions about sex, and communicating with their partners. They discourage experimentation. They blur the lines between consensual sex and rape by framing all sex as an undifferentiated mass of “bad.”—Sex-Negative Education and the Spectre of Rape - Sex Positive Activism (via neonspandex)
I hate seeing images like this on Tumblr. It just promotes an unhealthy and unrealistic ideal.
In this summer 2011
I will look good in a bikini,
When I bend over my tummy will still be flat,
I will have a gap between my thighs,
I will see hip bones and collar bones,
I won’t care if someone touches my tummy,
I will able to wear anything I want and look fantastic,
I will look pretty and feel pretty
But I need to work for that
stay strong and never give up
I am slim. I have a 24” waist. I am not fat, I am a healthy weight. I look good in a bikini and I have curves. I like having hips and breasts. I have a natural hourglass figure and I like the way I look. BUT:
My tummy is not flat when I bend over.
My thighs touch.
It bothers me if I loose so much weight that my ribs, collarbone or hipbone stick out. I look unhealthy.
I still don’t look good in everything.
Do you know what else? One of the sexiest women I have ever met is a size 14. And I think she is beautiful.
It’s not your weight that makes you sexy. It’s being healthy and confident.
I hate how every person in the world likes to say that “murderers are the only ones in the wrong when it comes to murder.”
I’m not saying they aren’t in the wrong, but let me ask you this. How many people who stay locked in their houses have you seen affected by murderers? How many times has a person who was already playing dead been murdered? I’m not saying they never have been, but the number of agoraphobic shut-ins who have been killed is much less than the number of people who were walking around and talking and stuff.
The statement “You’re asking for it if you go around walking and talking” isn’t that far off, either. You go walking through a parking lot, you may not be asking for murder, but you’re asking for attention whether it’s good or bad. Let me tell you how many times I’ve been murdered when I was in my house with all the doors locked. Absolutely zero. Did doing this hinder my good time? No.
Also, not living-person shaming. I’m just saying. This bothers me all the time. Especially when I see people flipping their shit about how “one reporter said this that or the other about a murder victims activity as if it had anything to do with their being murdered.” I’ve got news for you, people. What you’re doing has just about everything to do with how you come off to people. No one looks at me, watching TV in my bed with the blinds pulled shut and thinks “I bet she’s a living person who wants to get murdered.” No, no. That’d be you, yes you, the person walking around the grocery store or jogging down the street like an idiot, that they think that about.
This is an old post from an artist asking for donations or commissions after his parents decide to kick him out for being a trans man. What kind of parents would do that? What about unconditional love? They really failed as parents if they can’t offer their child unconditional love and support for being who he is. The fact this kind of thing even happens makes me sad about the society we live in.
Unmasking The Green-Eyed Monster: Managing Jealousy In Non-monogamous Relationships
Bellow is an excerpt from from this article. I highly recommend you read the whole thing.
Our society is addicted to three core beliefs about relationships that are almost guaranteed to create jealousy even in the most well-adjusted people. Most of us have absorbed these beliefs without even realizing it. Identifying and dismantling these beliefs in our “heart of hearts” is the single most effective way to short-circuit jealousy. Ask yourself how much of you believes each of these three statements. Is it 90% of yourself that believes them? 50%? Notice which belief is most entrenched in your subconscious mind and which one youíve made the most progress on:
Core Belief #1 If my partner really loved me, (s)he wouldn’t have any desire for a sexual relationship with anyone else.
This belief sees any interest your partner has in anyone else as a direct reflection of how much (s)he loves you. It’s a quantitative view of love which equates the amount of love with the ability to be interested in having another partner. When you break it down, this is as absurd as saying that a couple that gives birth to a second child must not love their first child or they couldn’t possibly have any interest in having a second one.
Core Belief #2 If my partner were happy with me, and if I were a good partner/spouse/lover/etc., my partner would be so satisfied that (s)he wouldn’t want to get involved with anyone else.
This belief is even more insidious. With the first belief you can at least blame it on your partner for not loving you enough. This belief says that if your partner is interested in someone else, itís your fault for not being the perfect lover or spouse and your relationship must be a failure. If you truly believe that your lover could only be interested in another partner because you’re inadequate, you can see how that will generate jealousy big time!
Core Belief #3 It’s just not possible to love more than one person at the same time
This belief is built on the “scarcity economy of love”, the belief that love is a finite resource, there is only so much to go around, and there is never enough. Therefore, if my partner gives any of her or his love to anyone else, that necessarily means that there’s less for me. Because most people already feel there are some areas in their relationship where they are not getting enough of something (time, love, affection, sex, support, commitment) they are fearful that they will receive even less if their partner gets involved with additional partners.
No, this isn’t a post about how women are lying hussies out to ruin the lives of good men with wrongful rape accusations. If that’s what you were expecting, you’re definitely reading the wrong blog (actually, come to think of, stick around; you may learn something).
What I’m talking about is this: Living in a rape culture, women are acutely aware of the type of rapes–and the type of victims–that are taken seriously. And the type that aren’t. The “good” victim (the only kind that counts in the minds of many, many people) is attacked by someone she doesn’t know while dressed “modestly” and not under the influence of alcohol/drugs or engaged in “risky” behavior. She’s an upstanding citizen with no history of criminal activity, mental illness, or conduct outside the norms of mainstream society.
Thanks to prevailing rape mythology, many people also have very definite ideas about what happens before, during, and after a “real” rape. Real rape victims want no sexual contact of any kind with their attackers and make this crystal clear right from the start. When attacked, they don’t just say “No;” they scream, fight, yell for help, and/or try to escape. Ideally, the victim will duke it out with her attacker to such an extent that she is left with obvious physical injuries. After the rape, she will be visibly distraught and in tears, but this will not prevent her from reporting the attack right away. In the days and weeks following the assault, she will spend a lot of time in the shower and be too traumatized to appear to function normally.
Some rapes do indeed happen like that; most don’t. And the more a rape departs from this script, the harder it is for the victim to be believed and taken seriously. She didn’t fight or try to escape? She must’ve wanted it. She wasn’t crying or visibly upset right after the rape? She’s probably lying about being attacked. She was seen laughing and seemingly having a good time just days after being raped? It couldn’t have been that bad. Rape victims know this. Realizing that many people won’t understand why you acted in a way that doesn’t fit their preconceived notions of “how rape victims act,” or worse, knowing that many people will automatically disbelieve you because of your background or even blame you for being attacked brings some rape victims to the conclusion that there’s only one way they’re going to see their rapist punished: lie.
Most of the lies rape victims tell revolve around their use of alcohol or drugs, their relationship to the perpetrator, their reason for being in the place the rape occurred, their behavior before/during/after the rape, or their background. Virtually all lies are told to make oneself appear more like the rape culture’s idea of the “good” or “worthy” victim and/or to make one’s assault more closely resemble the rape culture’s “real rape” script.
Competent detectives and prosecutors know that victims may think they must lie to see perpetrators brought to justice and try to impress upon them the importance of telling the truth. They may attempt to reassure victims that telling the truth is absolutely essential and won’t prevent the case from going forward. And that’s true–to a point. Prosecutors must win their cases in the same rape culture the rest of us reside in, not in some alternate universe. Even if the prosecuting attorneys don’t subscribe to any rape culture myths themselves (which, of course, the victim won’t know), the DA’s office has finite resources, and they’re not going to bring a case they don’t think they can win. Too many skeletons in the victim’s closet and a rape that departs significantly from the “real rape” script, and they may conclude that their limited time and resources are better spent elsewhere.
Even if the DA’s office is prepared to take a chance on a rape victim who doesn’t fit the rape culture’s “worthy” victim ideal, that’s not the end of the victim’s quest for justice. The vast majority of criminal cases are plea bargained, but rapists are less likely to accept a plea agreement and more likely to roll the dice with a jury trial, if the victim or other aspects of the case don’t meet the rape culture’s standards for “worthy” victims and “real” rape.
There’s a case from the late 90s that I will always remember because it was the first time in my life that I got the message that someone might actually give a damn about junkies raped while buying drugs. Drug dealers raping female addicts is a very common occurrence, and most people, including most cops, believe women have only themselves to blame when they’re raped while trying to score drugs.
That’s why I was enormously proud of the prosecutor who went ahead with the case against a drug dealer accused of raping a female addict, even though I realized that the drug dealer being a known serial rapist with two prior rape convictions probably had a lot to do with that. In any event, the drug dealer decided to reject a plea bargain and take his chances with a jury, and the judge ruled that it would be too prejudicial to the defense for the jury to be told about the guy’s priors. However, the victim was a great witness, completely honest and forthright about the rape and her drug addiction. She was such a strong witness, I was actually surprised when the jury came back with a “not guilty” verdict. After the acquittal, a reporter told the jury foreperson about the drug dealer’s previous rape convictions and asked if having that information would have made a difference.
Without missing a beat, the jury foreperson replied that it wouldn’t have made a difference because the jury didn’t doubt that the victim was raped by the defendant; however, they were “concerned that she was there to buy drugs.” In other words, she didn’t deserve to see her rapist convicted because she’s a drug addict. Unfortunately this case isn’t an aberration. Even if a rape victim is able to convince cops, prosecutors, and a judge or jury that she was definitely raped, she may still be denied justice if she isn’t deemed a “worthy” victim or her rape didn’t happen according to the “real rape” script. Is it any wonder then that victims in those situations may feel they have to lie?
I bet you were wondering when I was going to get around to the new developments in the DSK case. As you have probably heard, the sexual assault case against former IMF chief Dominique Strauss-Kahn is unraveling because the alleged victim lied. Not about being sexually assaulted, mind you, but about her background and also about what she did in the immediate aftermath of the attack. She now says that instead of reporting the assault to her supervisor right away, she initially cleaned another hotel room, then returned to DSK’s empty suite and began cleaning, and only then did she report the attack.
I’ve talked to several people who think this is damning evidence against her, but if we weren’t living in a rape culture, it really wouldn’t be. It’s not at all unusual to be in shock following a sexual assault and to continue going through the motions. I know ’cause I’ve done it. In fact, if the whole thing was a setup and she “seduced” DSK with the intention of accusing him of sexual assault (either in hopes of being paid off to drop the charges or awarded sizable damages in a civil suit following the criminal conviction), you can bet that she would have run crying to her supervisor right away! This sounds like a classic case of a victim lying about some aspects of her rape so they won’t be at odds with people’s very limited idea of what “real rape” looks like.
Apparently she also misrepresented her income to qualify for subsidized housing, lied on her taxes to qualify for a bigger refund, and lied on her asylum application about being gang raped (after being instructed to do so by a man working on her asylum case; she had been raped in Guinea, but not in the way she described to prosecutors). Additionally, there are some indications that she may be involved in a drug dealing and money laundering operation, and a man described as her boyfriend is serving time on a drug charge. All of this makes her a “bad” victim, the kind of woman men can rape with impunity. She did not want to be that kind of woman. And so she lied.
She represented herself to police and prosecutors the way she believed she had to in order to be considered a “worthy” victim. A victim deserving of sympathy and justice. And so she became the pious Muslim refugee who survived unspeakable violence in her home country before escaping to the US where she was granted asylum. The devoted mother who has neither time for nor interest in any kind of personal life outside of raising her teenage daughter. The hardworking poor person who plays by the rules and somehow manages to get by on wages too low to get by on.
I expect that the DA’s office will drop the charges against DSK any day now. Sure, they still have the DNA evidence to prove that sexual contact took place, but since DSK’s attorneys are going with a consent defense (as defense lawyers always do when there’s DNA evidence), the victim’s testimony is essential. And her credibility is shot. So that’s the end of the case.
And that’s how it goes in a rape culture. First, we make sure women understand that only a few types of rape count and only a few types of victims matter, so those who don’t conform to those narrow criteria feel they must lie if they don’t want their attacker to get away with the crime. Then, when the lies are discovered, we tell rape victims that they are now no longer credible and it’s their fault the case against their attacker must be dismissed. Works out well, doesn’t it? For rapists, that is.
"The real problem here is all these false rape accusations that are destroying our society! 90 million men are falsely accused of rape every second! A woman just has to sort of mumble a word starting with ‘r’ and a man instantly gets a life sentence! There are no instances on record of a woman actually being raped!"
Ms. Tough Girl
"If women would learn martial arts—70-year-olds and women with disabilities can do this if they put their minds to it, darnit—and carry weapons everywhere, no one would ever get raped! All you have to do is be ready to threaten your own friends and lovers with lethal force at any moment, any anyone who can’t do that must be weak or something."
Mr. Model Victims Only Please
"The victim was no angel herself. If you look at her record, she’s been arrested several times, she’s a single mother, and she’s living on welfare. So it’s not like she was some innocent little virgin beforehand. None of this makes it right, but I’m just saying, let’s not overreact like a good woman got ruined."
Ms. Fashion Police
"Did you hear what she was wearing? I’m sorry but that’s just not common sense. If you go out looking like a piece of meat, you have to expect you’ll get treated like a piece of meat."
Mr. I’m Not Blaming Her But It’s Her Fault
"Rape is never the victim’s fault, of course. But I just want people to admit that she has some responsibility. That she maybe played a part in it. That in an alternate universe where she’d done things differently and she lived in a steel Battlemech wearing a chastity belt, she wouldn’t have gotten raped, and she did make the choice to not use a Battlemech. I just need people to acknowledge that."
Ms. Couples Therapy
"I dunno, seems to me like they both made mistakes. Maybe he just wasn’t reading her signals, or maybe she wasn’t communicating clearly to him. A lot can get caught up in an emotional moment like that and I bet they both feel really bad right now."
Mr. Offensive And/Or Baffling Metaphor
"Look, if you walk down a dark alley with a wallet stuffed full of money, sure it’s still a crime when you get mugged, but what if the mugger is just trying to feed his family because he was laid off by an evil solicitor and the ghost showed him a lone crutch leaning in the corner?"
"If you put the pieces together, her story just doesn’t wash. She claims that he ripped her pants off, but her pants have a button fly. Ha! And she waited a whole forty minutes after the supposed rape to call the police—who would do that?"
"lol bitch deserved it loooollll"
Ms. You Don’t Just Get To Decide Whether You Consent
"She was seen earlier in the night drinking with this guy, talking to him, and even making out with him! And then she went up to his apartment! What did she think would happen? No one ever goes to a guy’s apartment unless they’re consenting to every sex act he could possibly want."
Mr. How Do I Not Rape Someone It Is So Difficult
"I just don’t understand how to tell if someone is ‘consenting’ or not. What if she secretly decides she doesn’t like it—am I a rapist then? What if she changes her mind midway through? Or afterwards? It’s impossible to know what women want, so how am I supposed to know if they want to have sex with me or not?"
Ms. Traditional Values
"You know, back when women dressed modestly and simply didn’t go out drinking with strangers or going home with people they’d just met, this sort of thing didn’t happen."
Mr. This Wouldn’t Happen If Women Would Just Fuck Me Already
"This sort of thing is inevitable when women constantly act as gatekeepers and doom beta males to a life of frustration and loneliness. Of course rape is horrible, but the pent-up rage felt by men cast aside just because they weren’t billionaire underwear models has to express itself somehow."
Ms. Avoid The R-Word
"Wow, that is just not cool. Having sex under those circumstances—I mean, treating a girl like that—you know, being inappropriate with her—is a totally insensitive and downright mean thing to do."