Her Defense: I Had No Desire
Why are girls still shamed for being sexually assaulted?
And why is lacking sexual desire still seen as good… a good girl?
In a double standard that does not hold for men?
Many people tell me that there is no longer a sexual double standard, as with a conversation I had not long ago. Yet consider the defense offered by young women who were raped in the following high-profile rape cases, each occurring in the progressive San Francisco Bay Area.
Up the road from me at Stanford University Brock Turner raped a young woman. His victim chose anonymity, knowing that she might be attacked. And her statement to the judge is filled with information supporting her innocence:
She hadn’t wanted to go to the party in the first place — she had just wanted to spend more time with her sister who was visiting from out of town. And she was dressed like a librarian. She had no desire, so she was a good girl.
Meanwhile, Brock Turner declared war on promiscuity. And who has heard of a promiscuous man?
You just know that he would’ve bragged to everyone about getting sex if he hadn’t been caught raping.
Some rapists are celebrated — even when everyone knows they committed assault — while their victims are shamed.
Audrie Pott, age 15, also lived just a few miles away from me. One evening she drank too much at a party and passed out. She woke up to find that her shorts had been pulled off and that nasty comments were scrawled all over her body in magic marker. Along with arrows pointing to her genitals. One scribble boasted, “(Blank) was here.”
Boys at her San Francisco Bay Area high school shared pictures of the assault with friends — and most of the football team. Rumors flew and Facebook messages on her wall continued the attack:
- shit went down ahah jk i bet u already got enough ppl talking about it so ill keep it to myself haha. . . .
- honestly like really no joke everyone knows. . . .
- u were one horny mofo.
Her friends abandoned her, shamed her, and blamed her.
Eight days after the assault Audrie hung herself.
Before killing herself Audrie had declared,
I have a reputation for a night I don’t even remember.
Is she saying that she shouldn’t be blamed for sexual activity when she didn’t even have any desire for it? After all, she can’t even remember it. As if sexual desire in girls is so horrible — but laudable for guys.
Unfortunately, I could add several more examples.
Girls are still punished, whether they are sexual or sexually assaulted.
Meanwhile, the guys are out bragging about “conquering women” whether through sex or sexual assault.
Posted on July 23, 2018, in rape and sexual assault, sexism and tagged Audrie Pott, Blaming the victim, Brock Turner, Double standards, good girls and bad girls, sexism, sexual assault. Bookmark the permalink. 105 Comments.
It is ever so sad that girls are still upheld today to a standard in which regardless of being defined as good or bad, assumptions can be made about them as a person as a whole. For example, a girl who was sexually assaulted may no longer be seen as pure – regardless of the fact that a man took that away from her or not, it’s now who she is. However, as we can see here, it is far to common that men chose who women are. In fact, in society it is very much assumed that a woman is nothing without a man. Where this topic becomes deafeningly sick is that no matter the intention of the man, the woman is often left to pick up the pieces of her own mental or physical health following.
It horrifies me that girls are constantly being taught to dress a certain way and act a certain way to not get raped. Instead of teaching our children respect, boundaries, and overall human decency. It disgusts me that even after raping her while she was unconscious he still proceeded to write on her. That’s exactly how you know that he saw nothing wrong with his actions. He wasn’t even afraid that she might get the authorities involved. It has a lot to do with society and what we have normalized. It’s not okay for women to sleep with many men but it’s okay for men to sleep with many women. I think there are several reasons for this including religion. God chose Mary because she was pure and impregnated her while she was still a virgin. Therefore creating the idea that a woman is only pure if she hasn’t had sex.I know this is an ongoing problem in my community, an idea that we’re trying to let go of for this exact reason. My heart breaks for Audrie Pott and every other man and women who have been sexually assaulted. They should never be to blame for a situation that was out of their control.
Reading through this blog made me uncomfortable knowing how true it is, in today’s time many victims are shamed for something they didn’t want to happen. Society is built on men and their dominance, no matter if women have an opinion or evidence based on something against a man they will always be shamed and looked down upon. Victims are always told “why didn’t you go to the police” “why didn’t you tell anyone” “why you wait so long”. And being shamed and told to shut up is the main reason why many women who were sexually assaulted are always told why they didn’t go seek help right away and it’s because nobody believes them. They are told that they are seeking attention. Or instead, they shouldn’t have gone to the party, or they shouldn’t have drunk too much. They are questioned instead of comforted, compared to the male who isn’t questioned enough nor punished enough.
I simply do not understand why there are girls who are still being shamed for having been sexually assaulted/raped when they never chose to have anything in the first place. Just because a girl who went out to party and had a little too much to drink does not make it right for anyone to abuse her, because of the fact that she is not in her right mind due to the amount of alcohol consumption she had. A woman should be able to wear as she pleases, go out, feel safe, and have fun while not having to worry about these mest up men who choose to abuse many women because they simply feel like doing so. It is never justified for a man to either assault or rape a woman no matter the circumstances. Many of these cases tend to happen on college campuses and unfortunately there are many guys who would do anything to take advantage of many women, therefore, one must take extra care of themselves and keep an eye out on the drinks. Reason being that many men tend to drug many girls without them realizing which then leads into rape and taking advantage of many. No girl should have to take her life away because of one man who decided to abuse of her and eventually show off to friends about it.
When I started having children I had 2 boys first, several years later I had a girl. I remember being told that when I had 2 boys I only had 2 penis’s to worry about, now that I have a girl I have thousands. On the one hand this quip is amusing, playing to a parents fear of their teenage girls being released into society. In actuality it is so scary I tried to ignore the problem initially. Instead of teaching my girl to stay out of dark places, I am teaching my boys and my girl to have respect for everyone. That sex is not the be all and end all for life.
If we have tried to teach our girls to keep their legs together, to stay sober and to dress appropriately and men still seem unable to keep control of themselves (as you said Brock Turner’s Victim “…was dressed like a librarian”), then the system is broken. Perhaps men need to re-think their opinions and parents need to turn the tables. Is it really a woman’s lack of desire or need to be a “good girl” that should drive her to act a certain way in society? Or can we perhaps actually look at the cause of fear, labeling and complete disrespect for a partners ability to have an opinion on sex or not. If one of my sons disrespected another person, let alone disregarded a woman’s right to an opinion I would feel as though I have failed as a parent. Sex, pronorgraphy and consent in all things (from touching, to games, to future partners) for all three of my children is a subject that I discuss regularly and openly. Pretending that my kids will not want sex until they find the person they want to marry is to forget I was ever a teenager, to teach them to respect one another is my duty as their elder.
I do not understand how society shame woman when they were a victim and a survivor of a sexual assault. They are not sluts, they are not someone who drank too much, they are not someone who should change the way they dress, they are not to be put to shame, but they are survivors who did not even ask to be one in the first place. Even if they did have a little too much to drink, no means no. It is simple as that. If she wants to dress sexy, she can because it is her body. It doesn’t mean she was asking to be sexually assaulted. When are people going to start to care enough to see these survivors as human beings, who should not be shamed for what they could not control. The fact that “guys are out bragging about “conquering women” whether through sex or sexual assault” just shows the mentality in some people. So with attitudes like this, there should be no acquisitions against the survivor that they did something wrong. One of my best friends in college, was sexually assaulted, when her teammates threw a party. This was her teammates, people who she felt comfortable enough to get drunk around and she ended up getting sexually assaulted. She was too scared to tell her coach or the school because she scared to be told that she drank too much and she did not want to be put to shame. How is that okay? My best friend, more scared of what will happen to her if she will tells authorities instead of wanting to get justice for what happened to her. It was heartbreaking. Our society needs to wake up and realize that sexual assault is never okay.
If you live in a patriarchy that wants to create a sense of male superiority first you take over a woman’s body, and then you blame her for the violence that occurred against her. It’s very effective. Rape is a tool of patriarchy.
I think that it is terrible that girls are still punished and shamed for having been sexually assaulted when they are literally the victims of such crimes. They should never have to go through that experience in the first place yet they are the ones who get blamed for “asking for it” with their clothing or other excuses that are made against them. As a high school student, who goes to school in San Francisco Bay Area, I have heard of Audrie Pott’s sexual assault in one of my school assemblies and it was something that made me think that it can happen to me or any of my female classmates. Hearing what had happened to Audrie got me very angry and upset because I couldn’t believe that people would do that to someone who was intoxicated and commit something so evil especially in my own community. It is completely unbelievable that rapists are celebrated and still find ways to make excuses for their actions by blaming it on the women and then get away with it.
Women are still judged by their desire or lack thereof as if this were the one and only thing that made them what they are. Unfortunately, even in today’s climate, the only thing women are judged by is their sexuality, when this should not be the case. Women realizing the ins and outs of their sexuality is important, but should be something for them to explore on their own instead of it being a threat to them. Even in high school, I remember being asked by a classmate if I was a “good girl” as mentioned in the post. When I asked what he meant by it, he said it was a girl that didn’t drink, smoke, or go to parties. This threw me off guard, knowing this was the exact type of thing he would do, yet it seemed completely acceptable an expected of boys to do so. During high school, it was more intimidating for girls to have this reputation since it was more of an everybody-knows-everybody situation. If girls are shamed for going to a party, it’s no surprise they will be blamed for a rape by the same sexist people.
This whole insistence that women be “the girls” sounds like a lot of controlling behavior doesn’t it?
There is double standard that exists between the sexual activity of men and women. If you don’t agree, you might be too blind to see the obvious truth. In most scenarios, women are shamed for engaging in sexual acts with guys, whereas (in most cases) guys are praised and hyped up for engaging in those acts with women. As a college student who participates in the party scene, I can see the double standard evidently visible. Girls who “hook up” with more guys are deemed as “sluts” but guys who do it are praised as being a “ladies guy”.
Sexual assaults are extremely prevalent throughout high school and college, ranging from known cases to cases that the victim is too embarrassed to bring to public attention. It was disheartening to read about the story of Audrie Pott. When reading the story, I couldn’t help but to think of my younger sister who is only 16 years old. It was just recently that I began to really think about the societal pressures placed on young girls today. At that age, it is hard to keep school in balance, none the less handle a high amount of alcohol. The horrible truth of it is that there are plenty of guys out there who will get girls drunk, engage in sexual activity with them, and then shame them (or brag about it). I will never feel the pressure or hate that girls feel from instances like these, but I do sympathize with it. I hope no girl ever has to take their life again from hate over one drunken night after being taken advantage of.
Girls are still being shamed for being sexually assaulted because some will say “she asked for it” or “she looked at me some type of way”.These type of comments don’t mean that you can rape or assault anyone because of a way someone acts or dresses. For example, I have a hard time deciding what to wear everyday because I don’t want to wear something that will show off too much and attract people to say something inappropriate to me. It’s not okay that women have to watch what they wear just because of fear they will be attacked. Many cases like this have happened in colleges where girls get sexually assaulted at parties or just walking around campus. This shows how women are still being treated as a sexual object which is so disappointing and needs to change. Women don’t deserve to feel like it’s their fault that they were assaulted because it’s definitely not, men need to learn how to respect women.
I appreciate you for bringing up this important topic because as you mentioned, there are people being raped and killed every day. It is so sad that a young girl felt shamed to kill herself even though there is nothing to be ashamed of. I agree that there is a sexual double standard. Even in a tragic case like rape, I don’t understand how people can find a way to blame the victim. I was currently reading a book called ‘Every Day Sexism’ which shares the stories of women, who have been raped and sexually assaulted. They also share the reaction of their family and the people around them after experiencing such a sad incident. Most women mention that they were so ashamed that they didn’t even tell anyone. Some of the women mention that even their family and relatives judged them for wearing short, or going out late, or being drunk. People act like those circumstances give a man to rape or assault a woman. I believe that what encourages those men to rape and assault is society and law. Instead of teaching their son to be kind, nice, and understanding; parents teach their daughters that they need to wear modestly, and they shouldn’t be drinking at night. It is very sad that while men can tell proudly say that they are having sex, women shouldn’t be mentioning that. In fact, people think that women shouldn’t be having sex at all. This situation affects many women and I believe that those who were raised with this idea, always see men better than themselves.
Many people also tell me that there isn’t a double standard anymore but I strongly disagree. Sexuallity is a great example of this because woman are still put down a lot for their feelings and desires. Woman can be to “emotional” or if they aren’t dressed a certain way they are to promiscuous. The double standard is slowly disappearing very very slowly but it is going away. If there wasn’t a double standard anymore so many things would be different, rape victims wouldn’t have to hide their shame although it isn’t something they should be ashamed of. Many more people would come out and tell their story and get justice for what was done to them. Instead of hiding and being judged, the victims being told it was their fault for what happened to them when it wasn’t at all. Even if someone did consent to have something with someone else they should not be shamed for their decision based on their gender or the way they seem. Its their decision, Not someone else’s.
I appreciate you for always writing about such controversial topics that most people try to turn a blind eye to. I feel very strongly regarding this topic because I will never understand how people seriously think it’s okay for a guy to rape an unconscious girl and then try to defend his actions with saying that “she was looking for it” based on her clothing even though she was unconscious. The worst part is that after the girl has suffered a violation of her privacy and could be suffering emotionally and physically she is still “slut-shamed” and is actually accused of being provocative or giving men mixed signals. On the other side of the spectrum men receive no repercussions at all. They actually become the victims and claim that they “thought” she wanted it and everyone believes them. It’s so ridiculous to me how in this era people are STILL oblivious and hold men at such a high pedestal and never expect them to be held responsible for their actions, yet women are still always wrong in one way or another.
I’m glad you appreciate the blog and my questioning mind 🙂
It has always been deemed that men are not men unless they have not been involved in sexual situations. No matter how many girls a man has sexual interactions with, they are always respected because of it. But when a woman is sexually open to plenty of men, they are deemed and looked at as a “hoe” or a “whore”. Double standards do not exist in our society. It never has even ages ago. Men back then were allowed to have multiple partners while a woman can only be committed to one man. The praises a man can get about encountering a woman’s body is at an all-time high which only degrades a woman. It shows that women are only useful in that context of pleasing a man. Women are placed in a lose-lose situation where if she does have intercourse with a man, she is labeled as a horrible person but when she has no desire in having intercourse, she is labeled as stubborn or uptight. But even worse than being labeled as stubborn or uptight, she is also in a position to be in a situation of being assaulted and raped. It is very sad and disgusting to know what women are being placed into.
I assume there’s a typo and you meant that there has always been a double standard. Interestingly there hasn’t always been. In non-patriarchal society’s like ancient Oceana (Hawaii, Tahiti etc.) and among many American Indians societies before Europeans arrived, there was no such double standard. And no patriarchy in those places either.
Excellent analyzation of the sexist beliefs of males who believe they have some sort of claim over the female body! Female victims of sexual assault are too often viewed as the perpetrators, the media portrays them as though they had gone out with the sole intention of “asking for it”. The double standard of men versus women regarding sexuality is a tale as old as time. Men are constantly praised and celebrated as they brag about yet another “conquering” of a woman. On the other hand, females are questioned and criticized regarding their sexual drive and desires. Men, whether they have consensual sex or carry out acts of sexual violence, are given the benefit of the doubt in most circumstances. Women are questioned to no end, they are criticized, and often times they are blamed for provoking the sexual violence in the first place. The prevalence of rape culture in society today is something which causes a disregard of women’s rights and safety, which must be addressed. As mentioned in the blog, the conversation about the double standard between men and women is dwindling, however it is kept alive by those who believe that it is time for change to occur. While many continue to dismiss these accusations and refuse to acknowledge the growing concern for sexual assault, women continue to be the driving forces behind the movement of changing the victimization of men rather than the acknowledgement of the true victims, the women. Thank you for this eye-opening post!
You’re welcome 😊
I’m really disgusted by the fact that men and women are not held equally in a subject that requires both gender’s consent. Boys are raised to think that being dominant and sexually promiscuous is just a simple part of being a man. Not much consideration or empathy backs this mindset, furthering the objectification of women. It’s really not okay to suppress and shame women’s sexual desires. All of this breeds inequality through slut-shaming and rape culture. While reading this post all I could think of was a stereotypical television sitcom father patting his son on the back for finally kissing the girl he likes while simultaneously forbidding his daughter from having any sexual relations whatsoever. All while the studio audience laughs in confirmation of this disgustingly relatable situation. I thought about the differences that are distilled in us and how they clash with what’s naturally there. It’s all very sickening.
This post brings up a lot of anger and frustration for me for several reasons. This woman’s experience is a direct result of inequality and unethical judgment that occurs in our society. Rather a woman has no desire to have intercourse or a high sex drive this should never be a reason to be violated in such a traumatic way. In some cases, the rapist is protected based on the condition of the women when the crime was committed. For example, if a woman is intoxicated during the assault and has no recollection of the rape her credibility is at risk. I have a friend that’s an advocate for rape victims rights based on her injustice with her experience as a rape victim. In her situation, she was not protected by the court of law because she was intoxicated when the assault happened, and witnesses came forth and stated that she was wearing promiscuous clothes in addition to being flirtatious. (So she deserved it?) For years this has been some of the reasons leveraged not to hold suspects accountable. When a woman experiences this type of violation with no advocacy or support she is left to question her self-worth and value. With that being said, this is one of many reasons rape victims don’t speak up. The burden that this level of indecency and disrespect can have on a woman’s self-esteem is insurmountable. No woman should ever have to take the blame for being raped based on a strong sexual desire or lack thereof. This woman’s story is very sad and I hate that she didn’t have the opportunity to defend herself against public humiliation. Hopefully, her story will lead to change and proper justice for other rape victims.
Being sexually assaulted is one of the most shame-inducing traumas that a person can experience. So it is understandable that victims don’t need to be further shamed by being shamed for not reporting the crime. And yet, that is exactly what happens whenever we hear, for the first time, about a sexual assault that occurred months or years ago.
Shame is at the core of the intense emotional wounding women experience when they are sexually violated. Sexual assault is, by its very nature, humiliating and dehumanizing. The victim feels invaded and defiled while simultaneously experiencing the indignity of being helpless and at the mercy of another person. The overall powerlessness causes us to feel further humiliated. Victims are afraid of being blamed. This makes sense since we have a victim blaming culture in which we make the assumption that if something bad happens to you it is somehow your own fault. Even further they may be afraid they will not be believed.
The topic of sexual assault makes me sick, insofar as how the girls must have felt. As a mom, it is one of my worst fears for my daughters. The no desire thing could be many things tho. It could be the age of the woman, the relationship is not great, the sexual experiences may have been bad or she could just be too tired! I have guy friends/coworkers that I’ve known for decades and would vent in frustration that their girlfriend of a year will only have sex with them once every two weeks. In my experience, I’ve lost drive when the relationship goes South or the person isn’t taking time to understand my nonsexual needs. I would want to have sex more if you would help me around the house more and stopped acting like you were my 4th child!…(we’re not married anymore, lol). There are also A LOT more things out there stressing women out. As a single mom ( I have a boyfriend, but I say single because we’re not married and don’t live together) I have the stress of working 50+ hours in a busy restaurant, helping out at another restaurant, trying to spend quality time with my 3 kids, going to school (online), paying a mortgage, car payment, all my other bills, plus taking care of the house (upkeep/repairs). I’m so exhausted, some days I literally pass out on the couch watching tv at 6:30pm. It is extremely hard to have sexual desire when you are limping to the bedroom because the soles of your feet feel bruised from standing on slanted concrete floors for 12 hours a day, for the last 25 years.
The entire topic regarding sexual assault is both frustrating and saddening. I wish more people could open their hearts and realize how much damage raping another human being can cause them. In the instance with Audrie Pott, she was not even an adult yet when this occurred and she was so damaged by it that she killed herself. The fact that you can do something so horrible to someone that they will go as far as taking their own life is, in my opinion, just as horrible as murdering someone. I wish that more girls/women would be more comfortable coming out about their incidents, so that more females could learn better ways to avoid these situations. With all the slut shaming that “friends” cause to the victims, it makes it so much more difficult. I could never imagine being someone who instead of being there for a friend and helping them through everything mentally, would bring them down and blame them for what happened to them. Nobody wakes up wanting to be raped. The whole reason it is rape is because the victim does NOT want to have sex. I believe that females and males should be more protected in these cases, however with the recent false rape accusations, it is pushing us far back. We can not protect those around us when there are people out there are pretending to be victims just to receive money, acting as if rape is a joke. Hopefully people will wake up and realize how serious rape is, and be more compassionate towards those who are actual victims.
You make some good points, and I would like to point out that false accusations hardly ever occur and there isn’t really any incentive to make them.
I do believe victims of sexual assault should never be blamed or harassed for the crimes that were committed against there will. The stories that were told were all extremely sad and I truly wish justice could have been served. In regards to the last story in just one night the reputation of a young girl was destroyed and she was bullied for events she did nott even remember, instead of having supportive friends in her corner everyone turned there backs on her. I do not think slut shamming is the right way to go either sex is a natural thing and everyone should be able to enjoy themselves. Our society teaches girls that they must stay as pure as long as possible and that sex is a bad thing. While we teach the boys that it is totally ok to give into there sexual temptations and not only is it acceptable but makes them more of a man.
Our double standard is insane and so hurtful.
The double standard that exists today is the result of traditional ideas of women and new ideas men. One hundred years ago, men and women were expected to not have sex before marriage, but an extra emphasis was put on women. Women were seen as pure beings which were supposed to stay home while men were expected to work in the city, being exposed to the corruption of society. This image of women were supported through depictions of Virgin Mary in society. As time went on, men became more sexually open and the idea of a righteous religious man slowly faded away. What did not fade away was the idea of a pure virgin woman which was supported not only by depictions of Mary, but also society. This is evidenced by the fact that when a bride gets married, a white dress is supposed to represent her virginity. Societal views of women are based upon old expectations of women. Women should not be slut-shamed while men get praised for having sex. As society evolves, so must our view of women so that this double-standard is eradicated from society.
And I have written on how the sexual double standard makes sense. It doesn’t, except and patriarchies.
I think that this is a very interesting issue. My main belief is that people should do what they want as long as other involved parties are also OK with that decision. I think that sex should be looked at on a case-by-case basis. I think that generalizations are inherently dangerous and it would be in our society’s best interest to try and avoid them. I think that people who were extremely-promiscuous for some period of time could very well be not super sexual people, and vice-versa. Sex means different things to people. For me, for a long time, it was a way of getting confirmation and affirmation that I felt I was lacking. Now, in a long-term committed relationship, it is something I rarely think about or participate in. I’m in the process of changing what sex means to me, just like most people are doing most of the time. Every new partner changes someone’s feelings towards sex in some way or another. Because of that, people, and women more specifically, should be free from ridicule, regardless of their decision.
As an international student who came to US last year from South Korea, I still experience cultural differences. When I read articles, I unconsciously compare difference between my country and US. However, there has been moments that I haven’t felt any cultural difference while reading articles. When I read articles like this, I feel as if I were reading articles about my country. It means this happens everywhere on earth, not just in US or Korea.
After reading this article, a piece of my memory just popped into my head. It was when I was 3rd grade in middle school. One of my female friends got pregnant and stopped showing up at school. One month later, she came back to school but without hair. Her father shaved her hair as a punishment after she aborted. I was shocked because it was the first time for me to see a woman without hair. Most of her friends including myself stopped talking to her because some of them didn’t know how to comfort her and because some of them were just shocked. Next week, she ended up dropping out of school and I couldn’t hear about her anymore. After I graduate and became a high schooler, the guy who made her pregnant was in the same class with me. Since my school wasn’t coeducational, we would enjoy talking about something sexual with curiosity. One day the guy who made her pregnant started to show off his sex experience with so many girls and he even seemed to be proud of himself to ever make a girl pregnant. From then on, I’ve been thinking about double standard. Why sex experience become something to show off for male and something to hide for female?
When I met a girl when both she and I were 18 years old, she somehow talked and acted as if she had been a virgin. Later, it turned out that she had many experiences before. She was just trying not to be judged and my male friends were right there, competing about who had slept more girls so far. Double standard has existed even all over the world. Society has forces women to pretend as if they have no desire for sex. I don’t know where this unfair phenomenon came from. I feel it’s not right but I don’t know how to fix this either. But, at least one thing is clear; ‘blaming a sexually assaulted woman is more than a crime’. It’s murder. Both men and women need to think if they ever emotionally murdered someone.
Thanks for sharing about your experience. I have written on how the sexual double standard makes sense. It doesn’t, except and patriarchies.
With women and being told about how they are being seen as sexual or non sexual with the way they dress is an embarrassment. Women should not be told that because they were dressed a certain way or felt a certain way they should be treated as such in a negative way. It is also so awful that not only clothes or actions that they are seen in such a negative light. Where as if a man or a boy were to feel that way it would be brushed off and said “he’s being a boy.” That sadly it has to go to these extremes and that the word rape is now a blind eye. That instead of being told when an unwanted man is making advances, not to yell rape but to yell fire. That bars now feel that they need special code names for drinks to get woman out of dangerous situations because of the media from what has been seen. That women are unfortunately seen as though that of seducing and promiscuity and not just expressing who they were and that they didn’t want negative attention. That having to dress in such a way that even unwanted and innocent will not stop a man from doing what they wish.
I feel like slut shaming is wrong and is thrown around way too often. I think sex is a natural consensual and positive experience for both people involved. I think slut shaming is thrown around by both sexes more times then not usually by having their ego hurt by not getting sexual advances with one another or just not being as pleasing as they think they are. I definitely think that girls get the short end of the stick big time when it comes to the positive side of sex. That definitely isn’t fair to them because they have the same right to sex as men if not more because they are the ones that essentially have more a burden to carry after it is all said and done. I also think the internet has a lot of to do with quality of relationships in general. People have so much social media today. People record everything they do now and almost make it a broadcast. Even simple conversations are deprecated because of texting, FaceTime calls and even social media.
I remember when both of these instances happened the first one being Audrie Potts death I was in High School. I have been in college when the Brock Turner rape trail took place. First I want to say that Brock Turner attempted to appeal the sexual assault conviction to have it overturned this year! I am still furious of the fact that he was only sentenced to six months in prison, instead of the six-year prison sentences based on his actions. Yes he is now permanently a registered sex offender, but his punishment was way to lenient in my opinion. He should have gotten more then a year in prison for the rape. Both girls got blamed for being assaulted, when it is THE GUYS FAULT. It is his decision to assault someone that is weaker or incapable of defending themselves. It is truly disgusting that women still get blamed cause how they dressed or they were drinking, so it’s their fault that happened to them. Like no, women should not have to be concerned that if they dress a certain way or drink to much they will be assaulted. It is not fair that us women have to constantly worry about being assaulted.
This is a very touching subject for me, but the first thing that pops in my head while reading this is breastfeeding. They disclosed women from feeding their children in public because they say its arousing for some men. Women in today in society are always judged on the way that they are dressing, talking working and etc. We as women are put on a scale that is so high they think we can never meet such ass cooking, cleaning and taking care of kids. As soon as we step out of line were always to blamed. Going to a party in today’s world getting drunk and passing out is so misfigured that boys think its okay to take advantage as far as pictures, sex, or even embarrassment. Nowadays in high school, they took out their dress codes that little girls can’t even wear skirts anymore because they say its a distraction for the boys. This world is so selfish to women we are always victimized for something we can’t even control. It starts from whatever role model you had, it has to change not for just women to be equal but for women to know that they are worth more than just to know that they are only for sex and have to be conscious of what to wear because they don’t want to be rape like its a choice to even be in the word. We as women have the right to do whatever we please without facing consequences.
This is the sad reality of the world we live in today and have lived in for hundreds of years. What I find even more troubling is that our society does not address this issue or even acknowledge it. Women being blamed for sexual assaults has been an ongoing issue for so long that it has normalized. The belief that women are responsible for assaults and that they alone can prevent it is entirely false. Yet, women struggle every day choosing what to wear because they have to think about how others will view them. I have even found myself considering this when I am getting dressed to go out with friends. I put on a nice shirt that has a v-neck but then I look in the mirror and get self-conscious and change into a plain t-shirt. Women are in no way responsible for men’s actions. The decision to sexually assault someone is made by the male and the women never get’s any word or chance to defend herself, during and after the assault. The constant battering of women claiming it is their fault makes them feel a million times worse than they are already feeling and can often time lead to suicide or to women keeping quiet about their assault for fear of retaliation. Whenever I think about this topic I get enraged because there is no progress being made in fixing this issue.
I live about 10 minutes away from Stanford University, so when the Brock Turner case came out I was shaken up. It’s completely wrong the way this whole situation was handled and how easily Brock Turner was let go. This case was EXTREMELY public and it made me heavily think about how many cases aren’t public and how the cases are handled. As I got older I learned that so many of my friends and family have been sexually assaulted. Many people who have been sexually assaulted are to scared to speak up and have to continue living their life knowing that their sexual abuser is out free, even living knowing the person who sexually abuses them is living right down the hall. The clothes that women wear or the way that act is NEVER an excuse to sexually assault them. Many men take advantage of woman when they’re in a venerable state and it’s disgusting.
I’m not defending the lack of concern for the guy. Ironically, it’s due to patriarchy – Our system that assumes men are leaders, Self-sufficient, should be able to take care of themselves. Plus the idea that men are sexual and want sex whatever they can get it, contrasted with the patriarchal notion that still exists on some level that women Don’t have the same sexual needs. I say patriarchy because it comes out of a double standard that punishes women for sexuality well it celebrates male sexuality. Teaching us that men are free and good and women are limited and bad if they are sexual. Maybe I will write about all this sometime in regards to your video. I’m not sure how clear I’m being right now.”
Yeah, but I’m just pointing it out because it seems like men and women get a pass when they have a lack of concern for other men if it involves a woman that’s the perpertrator. I know you blame patriarchy and not usually individual men. But often for other people, if a woman is sexually harassed in front of men at a bar or like something happens in real life in front of guys in the video and dudes don’t do anything about it or laugh or smile and think it’s funny. These men would feel the heat big time by others, men and women for not doing anything or finding sexual assault or harassment as funny or no big deal.
Obviously man or woman who sees it right in their face and doesn’t care or whatever deserves all the flack for it. But I think men and women who think it’s funny when a men is harassed or assaulted by a woman, they should get the same flack. I’m just pointing out how individual men and women would get big time flack by the general public, which they deserve if condoning it or shrugging it off if done right infront of them like in the video. But as you see, women and men got off scott free from judgment for finding it funny that a man is assaulted by a woman or that the man deserved it or must;ve done something to deserve it. I feel the scrutiny should be shared for both sides, but more often and likely it’s just in relation to a woman harassed and assaulted and people feeling that scrutiny and labeled sexist, chauvinist, which they deserve, but interesting enough no such people get the scrutiny or labels for the reverse.
The irony is that patriarchy is behind both harassment of women and the lack of sympathy for men when they are harassed. Patriarchy says men are supposed to be big and strong and able to take care of themselves. It says that men are sexually insatiable so of course they wouldn’t mind being harassed – or getting attention as it would be seen. Patriarchy also causes much more harassment for women than for men.
“Hey Bob! Thanks for these! Great idea to put them on my blog.
Just got back from vacation and checked it out. 🙂
Keep the great ideas coming.”
I found the interracial one and the woman at the end touching. What did you think? And while there is more strides to make with people’s views on women being sexually harassed and stuff. It was nice to see or notice that despite all the problems there are tons of people which there should be who don’t condone women being sexually assaulted or harassed and won’t just stand by. Yes women go thru it more than men, but it shouldn’t be acceptable no matter the gender or race, age, etc. But as you saw the vast difference in reaction and attitude when the male bartender was sexually harassed. I wished they had some customers at the bar when that happened, maybe the reactions would have been more in standing up for the harassed male instead of laughing about it like the male customers did.
But ironicaly the show ‘What would you do’, which seems to be driven in a humanitarian sense and see if people will stand up for others being wronged or discrimated against or bullied and have empathy, etc. So like a social justice aspect and liberal gear. Yes despite that, despite portraying for to be socially aware to others races and genders, disabilities. They’ve done multiple different episodes of women being sexually harassed, yet not even an episode of the reverse and actually just a minute of the whole episode for the reverse. So that says a lot to me about what society feels about male victims of sexual abuse. A liberal/ social justice like show as What would you do, which I do like the show. When even a show like that, shows just such a small part of male harassment by a female says a lot to me. And then there was the physical theat one video I had by BBC and the vast reactions and little care when the female was going at it toward the man and many said he probably did something to deserve it ha so victim blamed him. This would be an interesting post. What’s your thoughts on them and what I said here? thanks
Not discussing men much is probably partly because they are harassed less often. And also because we have a stereotype that men are big and tough and like any sort of sexual attention that they can get. Given those viruses people don’t think of it and don’t know what to think when they are confronted with it. But I think it’s an interesting topic to explore.
True but it sucks being that guy who is bothered by it but feels it shouldn’t bother him because he’s a man. And then nobody gives a damn. And like the one where the woman is like being aggressive with the guy on the bench. I get people less bothered and wanting to intervene because they feel the woman is not a physical threat to him and he can Defend himself if he has to whereas people obviously seeing a man being aggressive with a woman as more dangerous to her safety.
I get that. But the attitudes were kind of messed up. The women assumed or blamed the man saying he probably deserved it ha or did something that he deserved her pushing and threatening him because women are always purely innocent. So the victim blaming in that sense went to the guy.
I’m not defending the lack of concern for the guy. Ironically, it’s due to patriarchy – Our system that assumes men are leaders, Self-sufficient, should be able to take care of themselves. Plus the idea that men are sexual and want sex whatever they can get it, contrasted with the patriarchal notion that still exists on some level that women Don’t have the same sexual needs. I say patriarchy because it comes out of a double standard that punishes women for sexuality well it celebrates male sexuality. Teaching us that men are free and good and women are limited and bad if they are sexual. Maybe I will write about all this sometime in regards to your video. I’m not sure how clear I’m being right now.
They all had points. I thought it was all moving, the first woman stood up, she was funny too.And the man was moving with his response too.
Hey Bob! Thanks for these! Great idea to put them on my blog.
Just got back from vacation and checked it out. 🙂
Keep the great ideas coming.
The crime of rape should not be defined by whether or not the female victim has previously enjoyed sex. It’s a weird mentality and I can’t help but feel that it’s one that only men could have endorsed.
Pretty crazy. patriarchal attitudes rather than male attitudes seem to be the key. Many women have internalized patriarchy – a system of privileging men — and also slut-shamed the victims. Whereas many feminist men work to fight against this sort of mindset.
The crime of rape is NOT defined in the manner you described.
The vast majority of men (some 98%) opposed rape, have never raped or sexually assaulted a woman, nor morally condone rape.
This entire “rape culture” just like “toxic masculinity” is a total farce. A totally fake concept espoused by feminist and the Left in America.
This whole patriarchy thingy is another farce designed to subdue and emasculate men. This man will have none of it. None.
You are right that only about one in 12 men Seem to have committed rape.
But you misunderstand rape culture. Including the fact that rape culture hurts men too. Rape culture is the phenomenon that arises when a community or a society blames the victim instead of the rapist. That happens when men and boys are raped two. One example is the Penn State football coach who regularly raped little boys. When those boys grew up and made their accusations public many people supported the football staff instead of the boys.
Rape culture seems to arise because people feel like accusations of rape makes “them“ look bad. If there are accusations of rape against Penn State football staff then Penn State fans feel like they are made to look bad. But what makes them look bad is when they support the rapist and not the victims.
Patriarchy is a system of privileging men and masculinity over women and femininity. It’s real and it hurts both men and women. I know many men who dislike patriarchy and feel there should be gender equality. In fact, if you survey people without using the word feminism or patriarchy — but just talk about the principles that patriarchy and feminism represent —- almost all Americans prefer equality over patriarchy. In fact, I believe that you would prefer equality over a system that privileges one sex, yourself.
As a society, we have decided that rape is bad. But what is rape? Most people think of a stranger raping an innocent girl in a dark alley, leaving her bloody and bruised. Yet most victims know their rapist prior to the crime. In those cases, many people give excuses for the rapist like “she was asking for it” or “she was dressed in…” because more people can relate to the rapist. When a rape crime starts to sound like a drunk hookup or a guy “getting out of the friend-zone”, people who have been in those situations become defensive. It is easy for someone to define brutal stranger rape as a crime but your buddy Dan’s hookup on Saturday night after the bar wasn’t rape, right? This is why women do not feel safe coming forward about rape cases and why they try to make themselves as free of desire and innocent as possible so that their rapist cannot as easily give such horrendous excuses.
I find it extremely distasteful that there is effectively a war being waged over being able to live as a female in contemporary society. The fact that women have to essentially (and literally) “cover their asses” and equip themselves with pepper spray and concealed knives and the like is such a horrible double standard when my wimpy little self can go walking in a bathrobe and have no concerns. Society is telling women that they cannot have fun at parties, they cannot proverbially or literally “let their hair down” when every moment must be kept alert and at the ready to prevent being violated by immoral men. Yet, even despite this, preventing sexual assault is not a given which should be a red flag for society to tell men to set up boundaries, borders, and limitations on their own behavior. I personally do not understand how it is even feasible for someone to decide that they have the liberty to encroach and enter another person’s space so flagrantly and nonchalantly, and I feel as if it is not only a societal standard that needs restructuring but now an ingrained piece of firmware that has to be programmed out of countless men. It is so frustrating to see that neither of this is being done when both could have been done—in the Brock Turner case, he should have been not only punished but also rehabilitated in a manner that would hopefully redirect him from promoting or repeating such behavior; moreover, this would have set precedent and laid the groundwork for possibly new laws or elements of sexual education to be diffused into society. Alas, neither has or likely will happen and we are left hoping for another opportunity in the future, although hopefully one that will not irreparably endanger the life of another hapless woman.
It kind of feels as women we’re damned if we do and we’re damned if we don’t, there’s no middle ground for us when it comes to sex. Either you a slut because you embrace your sexuality or you’re a prude because you embrace yourself and the need to not be sexual.
When it comes to sexual assault it is almost always pinned on the victim regardless of gender “Oh well she was wearing that so she asked for it, oh they were drinking and should have known better” “Oh well he was flirting with her so why should he be mad if she took advantage of him, is he gay”
This was definitely the norm for me growing up in Southern Indiana. Girls were slut-shamed in school if they lost their virginity while boys were lauded for their manhood. Boys and girls at my high school always spoke in terms of which girl is known to be the “easy “girl. I never understood why the boy was never described as “easy” for wanting sex and yet the girl never came out of the relationship unscathed. I remember reading about Audrie Pott, I felt such sadness at her pain of being ridiculed so publicly and then to be abandoned by her friends. To feel so much pain to end her life made me very upset. Audrie never even had the chance to say “No”. She was incapacitated and those boys chose to assault her. Even more disturbing was the lack of remorse in their correspondence to each other. They bragged about what they did and lauded each other. In the case of Brock Turner, Judge Aaron Persky furthered the idea that assault on a woman was not a crime to be taken seriously. After all, “a prison sentence would have a severe impact on him”. What about the impact the assault had on his victim?
This is such a sad post. It’s so true. Men are constantly uplifted for “conquering” women and women are constantly shamed for having sex AND for being sexually assaulted. It makes zero sense and yet this crazy dynamic continues. This definitely has a lot to do with toxic gender roles. When men are taught that they are not to have empathy (to cry) etcetera and instead to “be a man” they are taught to be cruel. This, of course, does not mean that all men are cruel or lack empathy. However, gender roles do have a serious effect on our behavior and our perspectives, and thus our actions. Women even from a young age are told to dress conservatively. No one even considers saying this to a man. Young girls going to school have very strict uniform codes to follow, while boy uniform codes are much simpler. This is because women–even young girls are to blame for dressing “provocatively”. It is this exact mindset which leads to cases where victims of rape are blamed for something that they had no consent in. I think it’s important that we call these hypocritical scenarios out when we see them and be aware of our toxic gender influenced perspectives.
Not redistributing sex leads to incels who kill people because their lives are meaningless. Those who hoard sexual access become targets. You assume that a woman (or man) who participates in sexual socialism will be traumatized, but what if he or she is taught to believe it is not a violation? This is how we got over right wing resistance. They literally feel like they are being raped when we tax them but over time younger generations saw the validity of it.
I’ve paid a lot of taxes and I’ve never felt traumatized by it. On the other hand when anyone, male or female, is raped, it leads to trauma … and a loss of interest in sex.
Sexual redistribution is only sexual assault to the degree that economic redistribution is theft. The right wing tends to be the ones raging about how they hate teh poors.
Actually, the two things are completely different.
Economic redistribution helps everyone. The wealthy are even healthier in societies with redistribution, partly because if you don’t find public health the wealthy are also more likely to get sick.
This aside he is with the most redistribution are the happiest in the world. America was happiest when we had the greatest redistribution, which was in the 1950s.
Not redistributing wealth leads to a few rich people who live in barbed wire compounds and can’t go anywhere. It’s depressing for everyone.
On the other hand, sexual assault leads to higher rates of posttraumatic stress than almost anything. Similar rates to combat veterans. Redistributing wealth does not have that effect. My husband and I pay more taxes than we get back but I am happier to live in a country with a strong middle class then I would to live in a barbed wire compound with everyone poor around me. That’s the sort of thing you tend to get with libertarian economics.
“This aside he is with the most redistribution are the happiest in the world. America was happiest when we had the greatest redistribution, which was in the 1950s.”
They were happiest because their lives had greater meaning. They were genuinely connected. There was a nuclear family that provided love, care, stability, etc. Women were actually women.
But, today’s feminists and liberals said this period was really oppressive and near slavery. Go figure.
In the 1950s the economy was booming, largely because of a redistribution of wealth that created the middle class. Unions were supported instead of busted. At that time our political leaders were working to help the people economically. Instead of redistributing wealth from the middle class to billionaires like they are today.
Meanwhile, the happiest countries in the world today are also the most gender equal.
I am a feminist in an equal relationship and I am very happy!
Sexual assault is a direct result of sexual inequality in the same way that economic crimes (robbery, drugs) are a direct result of economic inequality. If you apply socialism to sex and evenly distribute it among the population there will be no more reason to commit sexual assault.
I don’t know how you postulate evenly distributing it. But some means of that would constitute sexual assault.
Patriarchy tends to shame women’s sexuality, probably because non-patriarchal early cultures didn’t care who daddy was and that gave women a lot of power: family name passed through women, property pass through women, women headed clans. So Under patriarchy it became very important to know who dad was, to reverse all that. As a result women were shamed and even stoned to death if they had sex outside of marriage. Minka do almost anything they wanted and would be celebrated instead of shamed.
Sexual assault is also associated with patriarchy. The more women are demeaned the more sexual assault you have. And the more women are objectified – and patriarchy reduces women to sex – the more sexual assault you have.
You raise a good point: that journalists and people often talk bout rape as if the male rapist is the villain because he is a sex crazed animal and the woman is the helpless victim because she is not displaying her sexuality. The reality is that the problem with rape has nothing to do with sex, rather with the absence of consent. Put it best in an interview with Huffington Post. “I like to use the metaphor that if your attacker had hit you over the head with a frying pan, you wouldn’t call it cooking,” Chaffers said. “Just because the event involved genitals doesn’t make it sexual.”
With this distinction in mind, it becomes easier to see how an interaction involving handcuffs and domination could either by healthy sexual expression or violent assault, depending on wether or not there was a clear, and honest “Yes.” It’s difficult to have this kind of nuanced conversation, when the majority of the news reporting on these kinds of events is supposed to take advantage of the gory detail of the individual story to attract viewers. I think the best solution is for sexually expressive women who have been the victims of rape, to get a chance to discuss their side of what happened to them.
Frank, P. (2017, November 13). Why Men Masturbate In Front Of Women Without Their Consent. Retrieved from https://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/masturbation-sexual-assault_us_5a04dcc4e4b05673aa584c89
Thanks for bringing up this related point.
Why is that when a women wants to be sexually active they are automatically “whores” but when a guy wants to be sexually active people just support them and actually celebrate it as if they just won a jackpot. Especially the topic about rape. When a woman gets raped, they are terrified to come forward and ask for help, the guy who raped them can just walk around like nothing happened but a woman that was raped would feel like their whole world just fell apart and there is no will to live anymore knowing that if they come forward they are the ones who will look bad saying “you asked for it.” For example, the Brock Turner case, as stated, if he hasn’t been caught for raping he can easily get away with it and tell everyone that he just scored and had sex. But his victim, chose to come forward anonymously knowing that if her name came out to the public she will be attacked for turning in the Stanford student. Women shouldn’t feel scared to speak up about being sexually assaulted, they need to come forward because not only this affects them physically but mentally as well having the thoughts of ending their lives.
“Why is that when a women wants to be sexually active they are automatically “whores” but when a guy wants to be sexually active people just support them and actually celebrate it as if they just won a jackpot.”
Patriarchal society’s tend to shame women’s sexuality and celebrate men’s. And then even as we move out of patriarchy (we’re still there) we are so used to the way of thinking that most people don’t question it.
(Interestingly, in early societies not knowing who dad was gave women a lot of power: property was passed through women, the family name was passed through women, women headed clans. It’s probably a large reason why patriarchies tend to shame women’s sexuality but not men’s. It’s easier to sustain patriarchy when you know who dad is.)
This was a very sad blog to read. It is frustrating how under talked about sexual assault is. Sexual assault and rape both need to be talked about, acknowledged, and dealt with. I feel the problem stems from how adults are raising their children. Honestly, the young girl mentioned here was only 15!! It is horrible what happened to her and how young boys think that is ok to do. It obviously does not help that we have a President speaking the way he does about women. That makes it ten times worse. However, adults and parents need to teach their children wrong from right. One of the people at that must have seen her at one point and they should’ve done something. Even afterwards, the comments and the teasing and cyber-bullying, that is ridiculous. I wish the young girl would’ve spoke up or mentioned to her parents what had happened or what she as going through. Sadly, sometimes saying something to an adult doesn’t always fix the situation. However, maybe if she didn’t feel as though she was all alone she wouldn’t have hung herself. People are and can be very mean and cruel. I feel we need more sexual assault awareness facilities, programs, hotlines, shelters where people can go and not feel so alone.
It’s incredibly sad that we shame women’s sexuality so much that a young woman will kill herself after being shamed for being sexually attacked. And meanwhile those who do the attacking are bragging?!
This post hurts me and makes me sick to my stomach. Why do people feel the need to treat each other like this? What do they get out of it? People should be supportive of one another. People should be looking out for one another. There are a lot of bad people out there, and we need to stick up for each other so that the bad people do not win. It should not matter that she looked like a “librarian” because if she was dressed differently, that does not give anyone permission to rape her. She should be able to wear whatever she wants without fear that her outfit will give men a pass to do whatever they want to her. The double standard that men who have sex are “players” which has a generally positive connotation, whereas women who have sex are “sluts” which has a very negative connotation. There should be no difference, people should be able to have as much consensual sex as they want.
Yes. Why do people treat each other this way? Sometimes I just wonder what’s wrong with people – people Who harassed and harm other people. I suspect that insecurity lies behind it – putting others down to make themselves feel better about themselves.
It has always bothered me that those who are sexually assaulted have the burden of proof thrust upon them (no pun intended) that they were not “asking for it”. “It”. What is “it”? Sex? A hard f-ck? Someone may want sex, but they are never asking to be assaulted.
In my early college career, I was date raped by a guy who I had been interested in. We had kind of been friends and hung out together a few times. I had been drinking at a party and somehow got locked in a room with him. (The door handle was broken, and my coordination and dexterity levels were severely impaired) I tried to leave. I tried to fight him off. He was getting more and more aggressive and I was afraid of getting hurt. In the end, I just kind of froze, gave in and let it happen. It was just easier to give in.
Afterwards, I felt so many emotions. Anger. Disgust. Both with him and myself. It took a long time for me to reconcile with myself that I was not “asking for it” or that my desire for him, up until that point, was something that had been used against me.
Today I read Brock Turner’s disgusting appeal. His claim that he didn’t really desire “intercourse” with her , only “outercourse”. I guess he thinks digitally penetrating his victim does not count because it was not his penis? Is he now claiming lack of desire? Did he not want “it”?
I’m so sorry that you have had to experience this. Thank you for sharing. Maybe your story will help to open some eyes and hearts.
Reading this post was very dishearting. I think men view women as asking for this type of activity, when in fact they are not. This women did nothing but attend a party because she wanted to spend time with her sister. This story reminds me of the netflix movie “13 Reasons Why”. I do not believe that there is a double standard here. However, I do believe that people view the situation as her asking for it. For example, drinking and attending this kind of party is asking for trouble, but why does it have to be. Why can’t someone just enjoy a hang out with out this type of behavior and activity. I feel like women are still shamed for there sexual behavior unlike men. If a women has multiply partners shes considered a whore, but if a man does than he’s praised. There is no equality here.
And I think it’s crazy that women have to convince everyone that they had no desire. So what if she did have desire? She still might not want to have sex because she doesn’t have birth control, is afraid of getting a disease or whatever. It seems entirely beside the point. If you don’t consent no one should force sex. Period.
There is certainly a different respect from society depending on weather a boy is sexually active or a girl is sexually active. For a boy, it is a part of entering adulthood and “becoming a man,” but for a girl it is equated with loss. Growing up, it was completely instilled in me that if I had sex I was going to die. Then, I figured out that was false so they told me that if I had sex then I would go to hell. Then they told me that if I was sexually active I would never be able to grow up, get married, and have a good normal family. It felt like my entire life was going to be consumed in shame if I was sexual at all. I know this isn’t true, but I still feels like these ideas are somehow ingrained in me. In my life, I think this is where the sense of shame comes in. I do not have the experience of being a man, but I think the element of shame does not come with being sexually active the way it does for a girl. Even as sexually active adults, women are taught to “regret a one night stand” and “feel guilty afterwards” but men are given high fives. These emotions of shame are not natural, but learned by girls throughout society because of the institutionalized messaging of social norms. Society wants girls to be sexual, but tells them to be “pure.” Because of the internalization of this message by individuals, there exists practices of victim blaming and double standards that sometimes girls cannot survive. And it all starts with shame.
Unfortunately patriarchal society’s celebrate men’s sexuality and despise women’s. And patriarchy and men are two different things. Many men are gender equal and many women still are not, unfortunately.
Sexual assault should be taken more serious than it is.I am currently in college and I feel that colleges do not care about sexual assault as much as they need to and it is ridiculous. It is a shame that victims are scared to even talk up about it because they feel like nothing will be done. The worst part to me is when they actually speak up about it, people give them shit for it like they lying. Usually, at college parties, I am the only sober one. So when I see a girl about to get taken advantage of, I make an effort to stop it or call the police. I hate seeing stuff like that and to see boys not understanding the meaning of “no” makes me furious. It is also not just women who are victims of sexual assault but men are too. Although they are not as highly reported on as women, they can still be victims as well.
Pretty sad that rape victims get accused of having sexual desire. Like that would be a terrible thing for a woman to have. What?!
The double standard is believing that men and women are held to different standard in terms of sexual conduct. The double standard is used constantly in terms of our American society, in this case, it is true to say that women are more likely to be shamed for their sexual desire. Whether that be that they have or do not have desire for sexual conduct, women should not be shamed for something they went through and had no control over. Some people go through traumatic things and if that must include the violence that women go through with sexual assault then it is obvious that it is not right to belittle women’s sexual desires yet people still do this. Women should not be normalized to want sex the way men are perceived, as should anyone be perceived this way, nor shamed for it. But since men are always perceived to want sex then society doesn’t make them victims to the issue and this is makes it just an issue for women when in reality its an issue in general. This ties back to social norms and how men and women are being stereotyped in terms of opinions rather than fact.
Yes, I agree.
This is a topic that weighs heavily on me. It honestly makes me sick that there is a sexual double standard. I don’t understand how people still think there isn’t. Let’s start with sexuality and sexual desires. Just that in itself sshouldn’t be viewed differently based on whether it’s a woman or man. The judgement that women face for enjoying sex is unjust. Why are women labeled as sluts, whores, and tramps for wanting to have sex. Why are they considered dirty or sinful yet men don’t get those labels or reactions. I feel as though society has taught us that men are animals and want sex all the time, that’s normal and there’s nothing we can do about it. We accept it as it is and are never shocked or surprised by their sex lives. They see sex as a conquest and are referred to as “the man”, god’s, kings, and players (in a good way). Men gain accolades for having sex while women are shamed. Now, to touch on assault. How sad that some women who have been sexually assaulted feel they have to keep quiet or go anonymous for fear of their reputations and lives being ruined when they are victims that didn’t do or want any part in the assault yet we constantly hear, “she was asking for it” or “what she was wearing sent a signal that she wanted me to do it”. Consent is consent. There should be no assumptions based on clothing or what level of partying or drinking a woman is doing. Men should not be able to take whatever they want, ruin these women’s lives, and live without any type of consequence or judgement. I really do hope that at some point the double standard does not exist!
Yes, what’s important is simply this: consent.
One way to prove that there is still a double standard is that women are labeled with a plethora of terms to describe their promiscuity: “slut,” “hoe,” “whore,” “easy,” “loose,” the list goes on. When a man acts the same way, he is given a congratulations and called a “player” or “baller” which usually has a positive connotation to it. Our society values traditional gender roles and when a girl is “good,” people think perhaps she didn’t deserve the rape but if alcohol was related or she was wearing revealing clothes, she gets victim blamed. People often love to ask the question, “what were you wearing?” I think we need to shift the idea that consent means anything but the word, “YES.” Silence, being intoxicated, and passing out, are not a substitute for the word “yes,” and in no way mean consent was granted. People should be allowed to drink and wear what ever clothes they wish, without having to worry about the possibility of being sexually assaulted.
It is only rape because she didn’t want it. We should be asking why doesn’t she want it, and encouraging her to actively persue it. Like if a man says no to sex we know there is something wrong with him b/c we know deep down that he wants it.
Yes, it’s rape because she didn’t want it. And yes, as a society we need to stop shaming women’s desire.
The anonymous woman’s statement to the judge is very telling. Like the post says, her defense was that she “had no desire” for sex, “so she was a good girl.” But would it have been so bad if she had? What if she had gone to the party that night and was, to be blunt, a little horny?
Why does a woman have to be chaste or even be a “good girl” to deserve not to get raped? Or to get justice if she had been? The reality that women have sexual desires and at times might even pursue sex should is frankly irrelevant to issues of rape.
Insinuating otherwise leads to tragedy, inside and outside of the legal system. If men are made to believe that an outwardly sexual woman is a “bad girl,” then what’s to stop him from assuming she wants and/or deserves an assault. And what’s to stop a jury from believing that she “asked for it?”
Yes! Pretty sad that boys brag about sexual assault while women feel pressure to damp down there desire, And insist they don’t have any, making them good girls.
I think we men need to accept the fact that most women do not desire us nor like us. Sexually assaulting and/or raping a woman is not acceptable.
I only ask that the same standards be equally applied to women. All too often women get a free pass or a slap on the wrist for sexual misconduct, even with minors.
So, we can agree on the substance of this piece. Kudos!
Well, I’ve written before that we unfortunately can ignore female perpetrators.
Progressives simply are not serious about making men and women equal when it comes to sexual promiscuity. Why? Because they are in a full blown moral panic about sexual assault and rape. The reverse is inconceivable that men would instigate a moral panic about women being too pushy about wanting sex. We all know that would never happen. So why aren’t progressives pushing the narrative that women should be more sanguine about excessive sexual advances? Because they’re not serious. They’re not consistent. The progressive moral panic is perpetuating the notion that women are virginal wallflowers who are somehow ruined by a less than wonderful sexual experience. No wonder that poor girl hung herself. The progressive left will cause many more to die until they actually stop hating sex and learning to like it like men do.
You totally didn’t get my point.
My point is that girls should not be shamed for having sexual desire. Read it again.
“The progressive left will cause many more to die until they actually stop hating sex and learning to like it like men do.”
Nothing could be further from the truth. Women DO like sex just as much as we do. However, they value “good sex” and not just sex.
I am most certainly NOT some virtue-signaling “progressive.” But, the “progressives” are not responsible for these young women dying. In each case, these women were violated and humiliated. That violation was due to the young men.
It’s true, huggy usually argues with me from the right.
But I know from personal experience, and from research, that when women are taught that sexuality is shameful they are inclined toward repressing and losing sexual desire. And then it takes A LOT to get them interested. So nearly half of American women experience lack of sexual desire. Still, half of American women are still sexually interested. We are all a mix of culture, personal experiences, and the personality we are born with. So you get cultural patterns and individual differences.
it’s not just women who are victims of sexual assault but men are too although they are not as highly reported on as women. likewise we see men as the most common perpitrators of sex assaults but we all too easily forget that women can commit such crimes too although again this is not reported as much with regard to the statistics. Recently here in Australia, a young and aspiring comedian by the name of Eurydice Dickson was raped and murdered while walking home late at night. her body was found in princess park in Melbourne Australia. the perpetrator who was 19 was said to have asbergers spectrum disorder but I beg to differ on this one because sometimes these things are used as an excuse to get out of being punished. since the attack, the government and others have tried to declare war on women’s safety and the fact that they should never be walking alone at night. In turn, an attempt has been made to try and demonise all men to make them out to be rapests when not all men are like that and it’s not just a respect for women that should be focused on but a respect of everybody and anybody could be vulnerable to attack when walking home late at night by themselves man or woman.
Yes, I know that men are also victims of sexual assault. And most often they are victimized by men. That’s why men in the gay community are more alert and worried about it then straight men are.
But my point here is that women are shamed for desire so much that even when they are assaulted they talk about how they had no desire for sex And so should not be shamed for the Violence that was perpetrated on them. When boys are bragging about committing sexual assault and girls are defending themselves by saying that they had no desire you’ve got a society that is really, really screwed up!
What it really seems is society and law just doesn’t respect victims of sexual abuse in general which is sad. It’s messed up. I know your point is how ridiculous a woman’s sexuality is used against her or how her lack of desire is used in relation to her being believed she was raped as far her desiring sex or not.
It shouldn’t matter how much someone wants sex because that should be irrelevant because rape is something taking against a persons consent and will. This backfires for men too. Women aren’t supposed to want sex or the ones who want it “are asking to be raped” but the male victims , since men are invulnerable or always want sex, society and the law doesn’t believe make victims either. And then the bs slap on the wrist sentencing child molesters get.
This is one post that is not only heart breaking, but sadly, oh so true. I wouldn’t say that there isn’t a double standard, I would just state that sadly, we live in a very selfish, cruel, prideful and ignorant time and especially having lived in the Bay Area my whole life, I also grew up with both guys and girls who would attack and offend victims of assault and rape. I actually saw it first hand. I was a “peer helper” in high school and would be in charge of being pulled out of class to hear another peer explain their emotions of confusion because she was being attacked by being called, a “slut,” because she wasn’t a virgin anymore. Even though she never gave consent. I also knew a co worker of mine, who went to Las Vegas for her 25th birthday and was drugged by the date rape drug. Fortunately, she had a dozen of close girlfriends with her that noticed her off behavior and quickly took action before the worse could happen. Assault can happen any where and unfortunately to anyone. I believe a women/girl should feel free and safe to be anywhere at anytime, including being dressed as a secretary at a party. I also believe that because there are sick people in the world, anyone should take precautions to avoid anything dangerous from happening, including assault/rape. Witnesses could have made the difference in Audrie’s story. More actions could have been taken in school to handle anyone spreading rumors or attacking her in any form of any kind. Although it doesn’t help her now, it can help someone else reading her story.
Yes, we certainly have not moved into a gender-equal world yet. And most certainly not when it comes to sexuality. Women are still shamed and harassed for their desire.
In the long run this doesn’t help men either because when women learn that desire is evil and something that is punished they damp down their desire so that over time they are less connected to it. No wonder that in America today nearly half of women have low to no desire.
Thank you for being a peer helper and offering your support for girls who have been shamed and harassed.
“No wonder that in America today nearly half of women have low to no desire.”
You have stated this many times. I disagree of course. I am just not seeing it (except in marriage).
According to the most recent government household data, there are now just as many unmarried women today as married. The majority of these single women do not appear to be suffering from low sexual desire. Most of them have pretty healthy sex lives with lots of different men. Just what I have seen and experienced.
As for married women, I would concur with your view.
Plenty of research has consistently found this pattern of nearly half of American women with low desire for sex. That’s not natural. Women naturally have as much desire for sex as men do. But part of the reason why women lose interest in sex in marriage is because when their desire is depressed they need a lot to be interested, and being with the same man for many years is not as interesting and exciting as a new relationship.