Rape Culture – a plague on humanity

A blog article by bonniejean alford (Educator, Rape Survivor*, and World Citizen)

Let’s just jump right in to the realness of rape culture.  It is a plague that exists because humans fail to respect the rights of others to say no.  It is that simple.  Those who make the choice to rape are exerting their power over others because they think they have a right do so.

But they don’t.

I educate about this reality because it is through talking about rape that we as a society can work toward ending rape, or at least help a survivor through the impact of the trauma.  But it first comes down to recognizing that the 1 in 4 women and the 1 in 6 men that face this loss of choice likely could not have prevented the assault, even if they altered their choices, especially when it comes to date rape.  For you see, someone who chooses to rape the person they are on a date with will just find someone else to satisfy their hunger for power. It is a sad reality in which some people don’t even know what rape is.  They think that only a forced assault by a stranger is really a rape.

But rape is so much more than the actual act of forcing sex on another person – in fact, sex has nothing to do with it.  It is stealing another person’s right to say no or yes or not sure.  Even coercing someone who isn’t certain is dangerously close to becoming rape – if not actually rape.  Don’t get me wrong, sex is a beautiful thing between two people who BOTH want to engage.  But if one doesn’t then the other shouldn’t just take what they want.

It is my contention that the only way to prevent rape and its impact on society is to talk about it openly and honestly, while also respecting a survivor’s right to choose NOT to talk about it as well.  That is what I have elected to do – to share my story and own my identity as a rape survivor.  I know no shame in sharing it, as I did nothing wrong.  In fact, I was a child when the act was perpetrated against me by someone I should have been able to trust.  But even though the reality of that trauma remains as a part of my history, I don’t let it define my character.  I use it as a catalyst to try and make the world a better place, to help others face their traumas and get through it to live healthy and happy lives.

Recently, someone I care about came to me for guidance after having been raped while on a date.  I hurt for her, as I know the suffering she faces.  When she asked if I would share her story anonymously so it could help others, I decided to create this blog, to educate and tell her story.  What follows are HER words, left purposely raw, about how her choice was stolen:

There are so many words in which I could use to describe what just happened to me on the evening of Friday, August 19, 2016. So. Many. Damn. Words. My feelings about what happened are very messy and confused, and as a result, so are my thoughts and words. The faint-hearted are highly discouraged from reading the sentiments that are about to be discussed in this writing.

It all started out on a Tuesday evening, when I went out with a guy named Rian. Together, we enjoyed some drinks and good food while conversing about our own lives. His smile was friendly, his looks even more deceiving. After dinner, we drove around the mall until things got a little more heated and we started making out in his car. The make-out session was fun, although Rian kept pushing for more. While my hormones were raging, I knew having sex with this guy was NOT in my best interest, and I had an appointment later that evening with a friend of mine that I was not about to cancel on for this guy. As I am driving to my friend’s house, I glance down at my phone and read some lewd text messages Rian had sent me. In these texts, he relayed to me that he was “horny,” and wanted to “fuck me and choke me.” Somehow… Some fucking how… I brushed off these text messages and continued talking to this despicable creature.

Fast forward to the following Friday, I had texted Rian to see how he was doing despite not hearing much from him following that Tuesday night. I texted him in the morning, and he responded to me that evening. Small talk about our days perspired temporarily. Later on, after I had finished my shift at my job, I texted him stating that I wanted to see him, why don’t we meet up for a drink? He responded by stating that he would think about it. A few minutes later, he asks me through text message if I could come over, as he was trying to save up to buy a car. For some crazy reason, I obliged, as he “promised” me that he “would not push sex on me.” I took his word on that and headed to his place soon thereafter.

Around 9:45pm, I arrived at Rian’s place. He offered me an IPA, which I drank over time. We cuddled, watched an episode of South Park, and fumbled through movies on TV before we decided that his bed would be more comfortable. Again, I emphasized to him that I did not want sex. A few minutes later, we started kissing, and things got more sexually heated. I had removed my work pants as I felt like I was suffocating in them, and emphasized to him again not to think anything of it, as it did NOT mean I wanted to have sex with him. After making out for a bit, Rian started to finger me, which, admittedly, felt good. Really good, until I felt something much larger than his fingers inside of my body. Something that I had largely told him I did NOT want in MY body: his penis. Without even asking for my consent, Rian slipped his disgusting penis through my underwear and into MY body. MY body, of which I had made perfectly clear that I did not want him inside of. A few seconds after he had inserted himself in my body without my consent, I pushed him off of me and said that I did NOT want sex, and was not ready to have it until we were at least a few dates in, as I have endured the heartbreaking experience of having sex with guys just to never hear from them again. He responded to me by saying “but what if you do wait after a few dates to have sex with me and I don’t call you after? You never know.” And this is where I get really angry at myself, because, even after he violated my body and spoke to me like that, I stayed and hung out with him, despite the “what the fuck, dude” thoughts that were pacing through my head. I stayed for a little while longer, only to be violated a whole lot more.

A little while later, we started making out again. At this point, I was really fucking confused. He then again forced himself on me, started fingering me, and, without my consent AGAIN, entered his male anatomy inside my body. He said to me “oh come on, XXXX, I know you want it.” I responded to him by saying that NO, I did not want it at all!!! I forced him off of me a few seconds later, and was at a complete loss for words. Very anxiously, I asked him if he had came inside of me, and he said he did not. Despite not feeling his load come release itself inside of me, my nerves and anxiety were racing through the roof. A few minutes later, I said that I had to get going. I went to the restroom and put my pants back on, and as I was in the restroom, I felt in such shock regarding what had just happened to me. I was (and still am) beyond confused and not sure what to feel. I left soon after that, and told Rian that I would text him when I got home. I never texted him, and I have yet to hear anything from him.

When I got home, I went to see how my mother was doing, made small talk with her about my new job and about our days, and my feelings of anxiety, confusion, and need to tell her about this continued to increase. I also felt a pang of guilt as I had lied to her saying that I was meeting Rian out in public, and did not tell her that I was going to his place instead. As a result of this guilt and the fear I felt, I divulged to her and my father in detail everything that had happened. I cried, cried some more, and my anxiety scaled through the roof as thoughts of pregnancy and potential STDs came through my head. And I continued to cry as those thoughts came into my mind. Thoughts and extreme fears of which Rian caused but was not being affected by in any way, shape, or form.

After talking with an incredibly close family member and my best friend, I gave the rape hotline RAINN a call, and spoke with a lady named Marie, whom advised me to take the 72-hour contraceptive pill immediately and make an appointment with one of their nurses to look me over and also to join their free counseling service. Still feeling fear, shock, and confusion, I thanked Marie for her advice and hung up. I finally showered, changed, and started listening to my musical hero/rock God Bruce Springsteen. In an attempt to feel my feelings to the fullest, I listened to his music and cried more. It was really settling in to me what had just happened to me and my body. I finally took some Valium and shot into sleepy daze around 5am and slept most of the morning, getting sleep that my tired, violated body needed ever so desperately. When I woke up, I took the 72-hour pill that I never ever thought I would have to take in a MILLION years, and was questioning to myself if I was really up to going to work that Saturday evening. Realizing that I needed to get my mind off of things as well as learn my new job, I went, and did my best to leave my feelings behind. When I left, I felt both relieved as well as incredibly proud of myself for working hard for what I wanted and needed despite what had happened.

Now, I am here typing these feelings that I am still very much feeling at 2:35am on this Sunday, August 21, 2016. I am still very unsure if I want to press charges against Rian for what he did to me, as I do not want this to haunt me any more than it already has. Then again, I also do not want him to violate any other woman like he violated me. What if, God forbid, he gave me an STD, or even worse, got me pregnant?! I am 21 years young and am about to graduate college with an amazingly bright future ahead of me, and am not ready for a baby at this point in my life. The psychological warfare of having to have an abortion would haunt me for the rest of my life, and I am not sure if I would ever be emotionally okay after that. As for Rian? Again, he caused it, but is not having to deal with these thoughts and fears haunting him like they are me. I want ever so badly to be the last woman he does something like this to, but unless I press criminal charges, I know that I likely will not be his last victim that he scars.

Guys: moral of my story here is, when a girl says no… THE ANSWER IS NO!!!! Regardless of whether a girl appears to be “asking for it” or not, if she does not want you touching her in a way that makes her feel uncomfortable or does not want your dick in HER vagina, it is YOUR role as a MAN to respect her wishes and not push her or question her any further. Girls: same goes for you. While women face a far greater chance of getting raped, abused, or sexually assaulted, men have also become victims of rape and sexual violence. It is our job as a collective society to unify and express genuine support for and help victims of rape and sexual violence, so that we can prevent both men and women from feeling what I am right now.

The RAINN hotline number is 800.656.HOPE (4673). It is available 24/7 and you will be connected with someone local to your area to better assist you in finding services. For more information visit www.rainn.org.

*I say survivor because it takes back control from the perpetrator, empowering the survivor to move forward.

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110 thoughts on “Rape Culture – a plague on humanity

  1. The topic of rape/sexual assault speaks to me very personally because I, too, am a survivor of sexual assault. While it did happen to me when I was fairly young, I can still remember ever detail of every time it happened. It happened to me over a period of 10 months by someone who I was supposed to have been trusted. It is not something that I am ashamed of and I feel very comfortable being open about it because I don’t view myself as a victim; I view myself as a survivor. I have even gotten a tattoo that symbolizes my strength and perseverance through a horrific tragedy. I agree that the only way to solve the issue of rape is to simply be vocal about it. So many people are too scared or are too ashamed to speak up about their experiences because our society teaches us that if you were raped/sexually assaulted, it is your fault because you were asking for it by how you were dressed or where you were at what time. But no one asked to be raped, just like no one asks to be robbed. Would you blame someone for being robbed on the streets at night? No. So why would you blame someone for being raped?

    1. Sadly, though, Natalia W., too often survivors are blamed – especially women. When it is shared, there are an innumerable number of ways other world citizens respond and it isn’t always nice or beneficial for either the individual in question or society as a whole. This is why I often advise other survivors to think deeply about their choice to share, making sure they are ready for the backlash that may follow. It is a sad state of our world that we still have to second guess our right to share the part of our story that was forced upon us. And that is the thing – it is our story, to share ot not to share. In that light, I do look forward to the day when rape culture dies – a reality I don’t expect to see in my lifetime.

      1. What has our world come to when a female or male that has been raped feel ashamed or afraid to say something, because their story they have shared to help others is being picked apart. When someone sides with the one that has done the raping because the other person dressed a certain way or sent a dirty text or met up with them even thought they probably shouldn’t is horrible. I should be able to wear what i want because it makes me feel good and not be blamed for that issue. We should be building each other up and supporting each other.

    2. The last point you made truly made me think. The answer is no, the blame would never have been placed on the individual being robbed. So why would someone would be blamed for being raped is beyond me. I hate that this happened to you especially by someone you thought you could trust. I appreciate that you are able to openly say you are a SURVIVOR.

    3. I too am a sexual assault survivor. It happened to me at a young age also. I was in High school and the person was supposed to be my best friend. Someone I had talked to about some family issues that were going on. He knew so much about me and I trusted him. After it happened I tried to tell my one girl friend who I was pretty close with and she told me to stop making up stuff, she told me I was being dramatic and that I wanted it. Some friend, right? Well, after trying to tell someone what happened and being shut down I kept it in. I was afraid to tell anyone. Because of that I started getting really bad anxiety. My mom had no clue why and couldn’t figure it out. I finally told her what had happened. No survivor should be blamed and no survivor should be told they are wrong and they wanted it. The person who raped me took my virginity away from me, but I will not let him take my happiness away from me anymore or my self worth!

      1. Thanks for your bravery in sharing your story. You own it. And know that he did not take your virginity. Your virginity was only something you could give away not something someone could steal. Your friend was very clearly in the wrong to not believe you. I’m so sorry you had to face that. Fighting the good fight and remember to believe every Survivor.

      2. I am glad to share my story if it helps other people going through the same situation. I was young and stupid so I didn’t report it. Which i wish I had so I could of put an end to him doing it to others. Its a horrible feeling and scary and I felt so alone after. I just don’t like how people treat you after they find out. Like I tell them and they treat me like a bird with a broken wing or that I have grown a third eye on my forehead. I tell them so they can know me better not for sympathy. So advice if someone does open up and tell their story don’t baby them, that is the worst feeling ever. Also don’t treat them different they opened up to you that takes a lot of gut.

  2. I would ask the author of this article to reflect on her actions that led into the situation. Obviously the text messages from this guy were a clear warning sign, as was the way he kept pushing for more during the make out sessions. Going to his house alone? Clearly a bad idea if you were not interested in having sex with him, after all he was making it perfectly clear what his intentions were. Once there, going into his bedroom and taking your pants off? How appropriate is that in the first place? Allowing him to touch you in a private area, what did you think would happen after that? If you did not wish to have sex with him, the best way to indicate such would have been to ignore him after the first date. You set yourself up for failure here, and while you didn’t give consent with your words, your actions certainly did.

    1. To some degree, the actions were not wise, yes. But rape is rape. Period. If someone is laying naked in the middle of the street, conscious or unconscious, it does not give someone the right to take something. It doesn’t matter how irresponsible a person was before that point. When no is said, it becomes rape.

    2. I think you missed the entire point of the article. The point is that if someone says no, it means no. It doesn’t matter what actions they’ve made, regardless of how idiotic their prior actions may be. The author of the article has reiterated the fact that she has been clear to Rian that she did not want to have sex. Focusing on what she could have done differently in an event that has already happened is not going to help end rape culture.

      1. I didn’t miss the point of the article. She said no. But actions speak louder than words. She didn’t avoid the situation and she knew what to expect from the guy. I’m not taking either side here. Both people in this story made mistakes. The way the story is explained, she didn’t want his penis inside of her vagina, but still wanted to perform sexual acts with him. If that is indeed the case, she could have given him an HJ or a BJ and gotten the hell outta there.

    3. A women, or man in some cases, may want to have some form of sexual activity, but not go all the way. Just because they participated in acts that may lead up to sex does not mean that they want to have sex. If somebody says no, they mean no. If that is ignored, and the person is violated, that is rape.

      1. Yes, you are exactly right! This is the point I was trying to make. Sex and sexual acts, while similar have key differences. Although the author of the story was definitely misleading, she was clear that she did not want to have intercourse. This isn’t about avoiding the situation, but about how her wishes were disrespected.

      2. Some people would not understand that if a woman is turned on, but would not want sex that it means they can control themselves. They’re not playing hard to get with you. They simply do not want STD’s or risk it. The way she told the story though that she did not want penetration with the penis, but would perform any other sexual conduct. I’m not saying the guy is at fault for all of it, but he definitely raped her.

    4. I have to disagree as well, in this case, actions never speak louder than words. WORDS are what is emphasized. Yes, his intentions were pretty clear that he wanted to have sex. However, the bottom line is she said no. That’s a fact.

      1. I think this is what the previous poster missed. Actions do carry meaning, but they have to be interpreted by the recipient, and often these meanings can get lost in translation or misinterpreted, whereas with vocal communication, the meaning is clearly stated and there should be no misunderstanding.

    5. I would agree to a certain extent. I completely agree that her action spoke louder than her words, but to play the devil’s advocate, she clearly vocalized that she didn’t want to have sex. So he should have been more cognizant about whether or not of going farther sexually.

    6. It’s easy to say that if she acted differently then maybe the situation could’ve been prevented, but what it all comes down to is she said she did not want to have sex and he didn’t respect that. Maybe it would’ve been smarter of him to ask in the moment “Do you still not want to have sex?” instead of just assuming that she must’ve changed her mind since she was okay with what was currently happening and just do it. I don’t think she’s in the wrong for still going to hang out with him because he promised her he wouldn’t push sex on her and she trusted him.

      1. I agree! The fact that he went back on his promise is the part that I feel was the most disrespectful to her. As you said, she clearly stated she didn’t want it, and he forced it anyway. I think it definitely would have been smarter for him to actually talk to her and ask her how she feels rather doing whatever he wants.

    7. Although I agree with you in the aspect that the victim was careless in her precautionary actions, it is not the victim’s fault that these events happened and trying to justify why it was her fault is exactly the reason why rape is so prevalent. When a story like this comes out and all the attention is what the victim could have done differently, what message is that sending to those who have thought about sexual abusing another individual.
      Sex is leaps and bounds away from foreplay as it introduces a whole slew of complications that can arise such as STDs, unwanted pregnancy, and the development of an emotional connection that she stated before. Participating in sexual acts is not a form of consent especially when it is previously verbalized that intercourse is unwanted.

    8. While I agree that I would have ignored him after the first date, you are placing blame on her that should be placed on him. Again there is a big jump for fooling around to actual intercourse. She may have sent some mixed signals that confused him but she did clearly say no to sex. So much burden is put on women to keep themselves safe. Don’t wear revealing clothing, don’t get drunk at a party, or you might be sexually assaulted. Does this seem fair to you? What responsibility falls on the man in these situations? To say that you cannot fool around because the other person automatically assumes you want to have sex is really ridiculous.

      1. I agree with your comment. When a girl is revealing or wearing make up, they usually don’t do it so guys can “holla” at them. When a little girl tries to put on make up for the first time, she doesn’t do it to be checked out by her napping partner, she does it because she wants to feel pretty. Same goes to any girl that does the extra work to feel prettier. Girls don’t dress up just to be banged in a dark alley. That’s showing no respect to a girl at all. Always remember girls, your body is a temple.

    9. Forrest Grump, while I wish I didn’t agree with you, I do see some validity to your claim. I believe rape is never the victims fault. However, people must understand that there are dangerous people in the world. While we need to teach our son’s to respect a woman’s body and words, we also need to teach our daughters that they have a responsibility to keep themselves safe. While the victim said no, her actions didn’t line up with that statement. Women need to know that if they feel uncomfortable to get the hell out. A human should never violate a human in that way but that doesn’t mean that they won’t. Until our culture has taken a dramatic turn away from the intense sexualization of women, women need to understand that not every man is trust worthy. If you are saying no verbally then you need to say no physically. I do not seek to victim shame but if this story can keep another girl from getting in this situation then what can be taken from it is: if someone crosses the line make it clear that they did, don’t give them a chance to cross it again.

    10. I personally think this response is very ignorant. How can you sit here and judge somebody’s actions by pointing out what you believe is appropriate and what is not? That was definitely not the point of this article by any means. Rather, this article was to point out that rape is NOT OK on ANY occasion. No matter if someone is naked in public, or too drunk at a club and leaves with a man, whatever the case, it is NEVER OK to have sex with someone IF THEY DO NOT CONSENT. No matter the author’s actions in this article, SHE DID NOT CONSENT. And therefore, it is rape. You are not in the right place to be judging her actions or the situation. Rape is rape. This is the problem in today’s world. People believe rape is OK if you “seemed” like it was OK. No, you can never assume someone thinks it is OK. No is no, and in this article, the author said NO.

  3. I would advise the victim to definitely press charges. People like this Rian are products of a self-obsessed culture that teaches us that we deserve what we think we deserve. Kids are brought up without ever hearing the word “no.” A close family member of mine was raped by someone she trusted and eventually had to have an abortion. It was the absolute toughest decision of her life, a decision that, in her own words, she’d never want anyone to have to experience.

    1. Sometimes it isn’t easy for a victim of rape to press charges. They can be embarrassed to admit someone took advantage of them and sometimes it takes them a while to even open up to someone they’re close to, so having to relive it to strangers probably isn’t on their mind and they just want to move on and not let it hinder them. Unfortunately, that’s why most rape cases end up going unreported. It takes courage to finally open up about the experience like the author of this article has.

  4. Actions do not give consent. There is a giant step from fooling around to sex, and both parties need to consent. No should mean no! The media attention surrounding rape of teenage girls, college girls, and celebrities appears to be desensitizing people from the trauma people experience. The writer of this article being confused about her experience seems natural. She may have sent mixed messages, but she clearly said no. If she does not want to report this, she should at least contact this person and let him know that his actions were not acceptable and was rape. He should feel the fear of her reporting him and maybe he will stop and realize his actions before he does it to someone else.

    1. Yes! I believe this young girl needs some form closure not for him but for herself. She should reach out to him to she can let him know what his action have left on her and how she felt. I believe that if she were to do so, Rian would then be able to ackowledge what happened and think twice before he does that again.

      1. There are two perspectives in this scenario. If we assume that he would just acknowledge what happened and think twice, then it is safe to assume that he has pride and would defend his platform as well. He might defend his stand point that she did want it and would not back down. It would only scar the survivor some more that the person that scarred her life, won’t admit to something he has done. So closure is not always the best case, but it is a great idea so the survivor can ease a bit.

  5. The fact that I’ve never heard of someone saying the words “rape survivor”, rather than “rape victim”, before my sociology class before is truly mind-boggling to me. This just proves to show how social media and the general public still empowers the rapist and places the blame on the victim. When an individual gets raped, the questions and comments always makes it seem like they were at fault. What were you wearing? How drunk were you? These are just a couple of questions that not only does not comfort the survivor, but increases the amount of guilt and shame weighing on their shoulders. If people were respectful of others to begin with, there wouldn’t be a reason to take precautionary actions. Instead of teaching kids to respect each other and not rape, we tell them to be scared, to be fearful. The only way to help rape survivors and take away the power we’re giving to rapists is to not only talk about it, but to change the conversation. We need to stop putting emphasis on the clothes they were wearing. Stop shaming people for doing normal socializing behavior, like drinking and partying. Stop trying to justify the reason someone got raped, as if they deserve it or something.

    1. I think it is so disgusting when people say it is the person’s fault for being raped. How can somebody say that and be serious? How could it ever be the person’s fault? They obviously did not want to have sex, so it is the attackers fault for taking away their rights and their dignity.

      1. I agree with you. It is a completely repulsive thought that one would try to blame the victim. I feel as though that would be like trying to blame a child for being the victim of domestic abuse. It’s absurd. Nobody chooses to be raped.

    2. Not only do we keep shaming the victims, most of the media attention goes to the perpetrator. The most recent case of this was the “Stanford swimmer,” Brock Turner. Most media outlets avoided the term rapist, and humanized him, citing how this conviction could ruin his life, but not once mentioned the impact on the victim. Most articles didn’t even mention her name, and just referred to her as an unconscious woman, and didn’t talk about her. This sort of mentality within the media is one of the root causes of this “rape culture.”

      1. I’m surprised that there aren’t more posts about how the media glorifies the perpetrator. Putting the attention on the person who enacted in the rape, and not the act itself is definitely one of the causes for the “rape culture” in society. I feel as though most of these attacks are ways for the perpetrator to receive attention, either from the victim or others. Giving them the attention, even negative attention, only provides justification to their behavior. If the light needs to be on somebody then it should be on the victim with proper consent. I do believe most of the time the victim would wish to stay anonymous as how troubling and even embarrassing the event can be.

  6. I am definitely able to see both sides here. The young woman had been sending signs that maybe she did not say and could have been misconstrued by Rian. By her actions; texting him, entering his home alone go taking off her pants and going into his bedroom, I can see why one may believe she led him on or whatever the case may be. NO MEANS NO. Everyone learns this when they are younger. There are no excuses for his actions because she never vocally consented. Rape is rape and no one can take away from the pain this young woman has had to endure. I truly hope she is able to find peace in whatever her next move and Rian gets what he deserves along with the help he needs.

  7. Words cannot describe how much my heart goes out for people when I hear that they have been raped. It was very hard for me to read this article. I sincerely feel for this young girl. However, when arguing about something it’s always important to be openminded and be able to see both sides. Now, Rian should not have stuck his private parts inside of you when you clearly stated in your story that “you emphazied you didn’t want to have sex”. That is a clear no for Rian no if, ands, or buts. Now, personally, I can see how Rian would have gotten that impression. Personally, I believe that you should have cut it off when he started fingering you. Because if you’re allowing fingers inside of yourself, then he probably assumed that his penis could as well.

    1. I agree that there are two sides to every story which I hadn’t really thought about before. In this story the mixed signals are the problem. When you say no to sex, but continue to fool around I can see how it might be confusing to the other person. Maybe not all cases are as cut and dry as we might think and like the author states, we often think that rape is only forced assault by a stranger. When it could be that the other person is not listening to what you are saying, but what you are doing. This is a difficult situation and the author seems so unsure of how she feels about what happened which is another terrible consequence of sexual assault.

      1. Yes. I see where you’re coming from. Abuse is not always necessarily a forced action against someone’s will. And from this article, and you reply to my comment as well, I’ve learned that rape can be a miscommunication that leads to accidentally violating someone. Some people may mean no harm when they do it, due to miscommunication, but still leave a huge impact on that person.

    2. I definitely agree an open mind is essentials especially when dealing with a situation as sensitive as rape. I also can see how Rian may have thought she was “playing hard to get” initially; however once she had told him no MORE than once, he should not ave went any further.

      1. Mixed signals and poor communication further complicated the situation when she stayed at his house after the initial encounter and they had sex a second time.
        Honestly, I feel if the event were that traumatic for her and she seriously did not want to have sex with him at all that she would have left after the first time. Sticking around simply seems to me like the first time was validated.

  8. It hurts hearing about somebody being raped, and we hear about it more and more as it is being promoted on all types of media. The way I hear it myself the most is through social media. It seems like everywhere I scroll I can read about somebody being raped, and the victim is a girl the majority of the time. It is sad to see how in music and television, women are made out to be sexual objects, and not viewed as a human themselves. If I have a daughter in the future and she comes home telling me she was treated in such a poor way, she would not be the only victim in this situation.

    1. I definitely agree with this. The fact that you are considering the future in such a way is very admirable. I feel like we need to let children at a young age know that even though they were treated in a terrible way, they should feel like they can talk to those they are close to and not feel ashamed. Unfortunately when these situations are posted on social media, they tend to get a lot of backlash like “they were asking for it” and “look at that slutty outfit” and crap like that.

      1. Even though she had mixed signals he should have listened to her to stop. When she kept going with making out and doing other stuff he shouldn’t tried to push to go further.

  9. It’s disgusting that people today have to go through with this. It’s sickening to hear that someone was raped in any form. In today’s day and age women on TV or movies are seen as sexual objects and not people. No means no and men and women need to respect that if one party does not give you consent then you should wipe that thought out completely and not keeping trying. Rape is not something to take lightly and should be acted upon as soon as possible and tell the police or someone close whom you can trust.

    1. I COMPLETELY agree with you Tim. No means no and when nit come down to it, her vocal expression that she did not want to have sex should have been the end. It’s unfortunate she had and still has to deal with this.

    2. Yes Tim, It is disgusting how people treat others like object or dirt like as if they are not people. Men, women, boys, and girls need to contact the authorities immediately. This is something that should not get swept under the rug once performed. However, the problem being that some are threatened not to tell or they personally won’t reach out to the authorities.

    3. I agree. Although there’s nothing wrong with being sexual as long as people understand that you’re also a person with feelings. In fact, we often view sex as a forbidden topic and have strange attitudes towards anything relating to sex. Perhaps if the world were less awkward about sex, then it would be easier to talk about it and less problems would arise.

  10. Rape culture was designed to show how society blames victims of sexual assault and normalize MALE sexual violence. If someone says no, than No means no but since forever people brush it off and say “it’s a boy thing” but I think everyone should take into consideration how would they feel if their option of saying no was taken away from them? Or wow would they feel if someone they loved and cared about was raped. Society as a whole has to just talk to each other with respect when addressing something this serious.

    1. I agree with this, whenever I hear people say “boys will be boys” I want to cringe because it basically excuses their actions, even when it goes as far as rape. It’s like when we hear about certain star athletes at schools get out of the punishment they deserve when guilty of sexual assault because it could “hurt their future”, without taking into consideration how this whole thing affected the victim. I also think rape is something that everyone should take seriously, even if they can’t relate it to themselves or someone they’re close to. There’s a good chance many victims of sexual assault have people they’re personally close to, so their situation is just as valid when compared to how people would feel if it happened to someone they know.

      1. This is a very valid point. The saying “boys will be boys” is such a stupid one. People try to play it off as an excuse for boys acting the way they do, and it is a sorry one. It is horrible to hear that anyone gets a free pass when they commit a crime like rape because they don’t want to “hurt their future.”

  11. Two of my friends, a gay female and a straight male, had engaged in a temporary fling (friends with benefits) during a time where the female was exploring her sexuality and thought she had feelings for the male. However, there were maybe one or two occasions where he encouraged her to perform oral on him, since he would do it to her for “hours at a time”, so he felt he deserved that in return. She would try but after about 10 minutes she would stop, because it just wasn’t something she was into despite being attracted to him at the time. What really bothered me about this was during a party we were at, the topic came up that “You shouldn’t start something sexual if you’re gonna change your mind during and stop”. My female friend highly disagreed with this, especially since at the time it was personal to her, and responded with “No, you have every right to stop if during it you change your mind”. After this my male friend, definitely intoxicated, thought it’d be a good idea to respond back, in front of all of our friends with “Yeah well I [performed oral on you] for over an hour straight so maybe you could’ve at least returned the favor! All I’m saying is you shouldn’t even start if you’re just gonna stop!” This obviously upset my female friend and she left. I kind of rambled on with something that probably isn’t as severe as other things I’ve read, but you do have the right to say no, even if you two are in the middle of something, you have the right to change your mind and stop if you have second thoughts. You don’t owe anyone anything.

    1. I think your example actually touches on the problem in some cases of rape. It is not always that act of a forced brutal attack. And people clearly have very different opinions on what is “expected” when it comes to sex. If you start fooling around and want to stop, the other person needs to respect that, whether they like it or not. In the heat of the moment it might seem like just playing hard to get but if one person wants to stop and the other does not respect that I believe it is rape. But I can see how mixed signals can lead problems and it is not always so clear when two people see the situation differently.

      1. I agree that rape isn’t always a forced brutal attack. While my example isn’t technically an example of rape, since there was consent and no force, it at other times can be seen in the form of convincing or begging someone to do something, and then making them feel guilty for not wanting to, or even for stopping in the middle of it when they at least consented at the beginning. I think it still contributes to the attitude that they were owed something or that someone can’t change their mind in the middle of it when the consent is no longer there.

      2. I completely agree with you. Just because you are fooling around with somebody does not mean you want to have sex with that person. You might have feelings for that person, and want to show them in a way, but you might be ready for sex yet. If somebody does not respect that and try to overpower you, that is what I consider rape.

  12. As a rape survivor myself, not only was her story similar to mine, but also her feelings in the aftermath. Like me, she was afraid to report the crime to the police. I’m personally not sure why I chose not to report it, but the fact that so many rapes go unreported shows how messed up the culture that we live in is. Most other crimes would immediately be reported, like assault, or robbery, but for some reason society tries to place fault and shame upon the survivors that makes them afraid to tell the police. While it may be easy for those on the outside to say, “reporting him will prevent him from hurting others,” it really is hard to bring yourself to do it, and all I wanted to do was to forget about it. It took me months to feel ready to tell my best friend about it, how was I supposed to tell random strangers before that? I hope that one day sex can be a conversation topic that isn’t so awkwardly taboo so then crimes related to sex may be treated and reported like any other crime.

    1. I think one of the main reasons of why rape victims don’t report the crime to the police is because of how society views rape. Even though rape is taken very seriously as an issue in society, individual victims of rape are taken lightly because of the amount of people who has cried wolf. Cases of “victims” claiming to be raped and sending innocent people to prison are the ones that get the most media attention. From my point of view, it seems like cops either feel like girls are lying about it to get revenge or guys who get raped is a joke.

      1. Not only the “crying wolf” part, but a lot of it also has to do with slut shaming. I’m sure many people cry wolf on stealing, yet thievery doesn’t receive the same mentality as rape. The fact that we view girls as pure and innocent hurts their image whenever the topic of sex is brought up. If a girl isn’t celibate, we immediately lose our perception of them as innocent, and begin to think of them as a lesser human being. Slut shaming is definitely something that contributes to our rape culture and needs to be changed.

      2. The one thing I really don’t like is that sometimes girls DO want to get revenge, which personally just makes me upset. I feel like some cops are just basing what they do on what they see in the media. It probably isn’t true, but sometimes it just seems like they’re part of a sitcom that can joke about rape and other serious situations.

  13. On Netflix right now there is a documentary called, “Audrie & Daisy” which is rape survivors telling their stories. I highly recommend watching if you have access. It is actually really tragic what happened to these girls, but really what concerned me the most was what happened after. Both girls tried to commit suicide because of what happened to them. One girl was successful. How tragic that after they were raped they felt so bad and ashamed that they wanted to take their own lives. My message to the author of this article would be to please talk to someone. Being confused or not over what you experienced, you should seek professional support!

    1. I’ve seen this documentary and afterwards I started uncontrollably crying. I haven’t personally experienced rape, but as I was watching these two ladies cope with it, I also began to feel vulnerable. This may sound bad, but after seeing the way they were treated, I felt like the girl who successfully committed suicide was finally free.

  14. Rape culture is a really big problem in our society and it is really hard to be stopped unless there is a group gathered together. There are many women and men that have been part of rape whether it was during their childhood life or even as a grown person. It is really difficult to have a trauma that will always be stuck through your whole life. In my case even though I have not been able to deal with rape and I might not know how it feels to be raped I am able to comprehend all those people that have been raped. It is like I am In their own foot steps knowing that it is really hard to fight through the trauma. As a society we should all be able to respect women and men that have experienced rape. Helping them out is one of the ways that we should unite and help out. Rape has really grown over the decades because of people that are not able to understand that “NO” is a way to let that person not to do something really stupid. In that sense rape is so dumb to do because of all the consequences that are left behind without no type of regard.

  15. Rape is something that needs to be openly talked especially in the rape culture we are living in. Some people actually believe that if a woman or a man dressed a little different that the may not have been a victim, this is never the case. We are supposed to live in a free country but we have society telling us not to wear or act certain ways in a fear of being violated in some way. This is so sad. Rape needs to be discussed, but it also needs to be clear that it’s never the victims fault. I hope this article motivated survivors to come forward with their stories to show that they are not alone, and get the help they deserve.

  16. Rape is such a hot topic in today’s society. It’s a real shame that in today’s society sex is so easy to attain. Usually in rape cases, the women is usually blamed and is told things like ” Push him off” or “Leave” It could be very hard for a women to do that because the male could get very physical and keep on insisting. I feel like rape needs to be discussed at a young age to prevent these disgusting actions. No is No. People really need to learn how to respect.

  17. I think it’s terrible that in today’s society people who have become victims of rape feel as though they are responsible for the actions that somebody else has taken. Even with the title of “victim” there are still people who push the blame onto whom was violated, as though they could have predicted the terrible events suffered. I absolutely urge the victim of this article to press charges on the perpetrator as he is clearly one who would do this again to another unfortunate soul. If not for herself, for the others who fall victim to his charm and deceit. Another reason I believe she needs to press charges is to become a “survivor”. As much as I want to, it is hard for me to believe one as a “rape survivor” if the only actions taken after rape are to isolate the memory and push it out of the conscious mind. Taking action won’t undo the previous events, but could possibly save another from going through the emotional stress this woman is clearly suffering from.

    1. Rape tears a person down emotionally and physically. It leaves victims feeling worthless and can stunt their ability to socialize and interact with other people. A rape survivor is someone who can move on and function normally without being crippled by the event. If a person has to isolate the memory to do just that, I’d still think of them as a rape survivor. Sometimes pressing charges for rape is more difficult than it seems because the whole ordeal of it puts one through even more emotional turmoil, but that is just my opinion and experience.

      1. You know what, that is a very good point. You’ve actually changed my mind on the matter and would like to pull back about what I said I feel like should classify as a “survivor”. I do still think it is important for the victim however to speak up about it as troubling as it may. Either by reporting it, or seeking a counselor. I do see how it can be incredibly troubling as the event can leave one feeling de-humanized. Thank you for replying and changing my mind on the matter.

      2. I agree with your opinion. People assume that it is very easy to barge in a police department and report a case like this. Even to friends it is difficult to open up to them because of the fear of being judged or looked down on. It takes a lot of courage to be able to tell someone. Imagine how much it is eating them inside every second and every minute they keep it inside. So if you see someone that is hurting or doesn’t look good, talk to them try to help.

  18. I don’t understand how he thought that after the first time he penetrated her, he could get away with trying it the second time. I understand that some men tend to think with their “downstairs” brain, but it is still a brain and should behave as such. The idea of having power over someone makes me think about what it might be like to live under the reign of a dictator. Not being able to control what you can do, say or believe can make anyone feel vulnerable and I hate that some people feel as though they have the right to make others feel this way. Displaying “power” in such a way doesn’t show “manliness”, all it shows is the lack of stability someone has in his or her own life. They feel like they have to be in control all the time and forcing themselves on people is just not the way to handle it. Get a coloring book or something, instead of being a jerk.

    1. I have a real problem with the stereotype that “men think only with their penises”. Any person (not specifically men) who takes control of another person like this knows what they are doing. It is not an unconscious process that takes place, but something that is usually planned ahead of time by the perpetrator. One who sexually assaults another is doing it by their own free will as the only brain that people have is the one in their head.
      I also don’t fully agree with your thought on people who display power. A parent who displays power over their child is not showing a lack of stability, but the opposite. I would argue that the parent is stable enough to understand that they do have power in the situation and that they need to keep control of that power. Of course, the method used to show this power is what differentiates one who has stability to one who does not.

  19. It is appalling as to how Rian thought it was okay to penetrate her, even though she had clearly told him not to MORE THAN ONCE. It should be known and understood that no means no. I can only imagine the sense of helplessness this girl must’ve felt. It is completely unfair to have these men thinking that they can have their ways with us, when we should be in total control of our own bodies. Rape victims should not have a sense of shame in thinking that it was their own fault as to why someone took control of their bodies. It is never the rape victim’s fault.

  20. One reason people blame a victim is to distance themselves from an unpleasant occurrence and thereby confirm their own invulnerability to the risk. By labeling or accusing the victim, others can see the victim as different from themselves. People reassure themselves by thinking, “Because I am not like her, because I do not do that, this would never happen to me.” We need to help people understand that this is not a helpful reaction.

  21. Others can see the victim as different from themselves. People reassure themselves by thinking, “Because I am not like her, because I do not do that, this would never happen to me.” We need to help people understand that this is not a helpful reaction. But we have to do something, to give them hope and make them think that this could happen to everyone.

  22. Rape culture is a sad thing I think. Media makes it look OK to do when they put it in television shows and famous people sing about it like it is nothing. So giving it a positive spin when it should have a negative spin on it. Also rape culture being viewed as OK and in a positive light makes it seem like not a big deal and are teaching kids that listen to this music or watch those funny t.v shows that its OK to do it and they aren’t going to get punished for doing something wrong because everyone doing it. When did rape become a norm?

  23. It is OK to have sex when two people are dating, and when they agree to it, which is what makes it a relationship. Rape is dehumanizing and a very sad thing. It is so true that rape is not just coercing the opposite sex to sexual intercourse, but rather doing things that is against their wish and values. In this light, Rian should have respected her wish of not having to do anything by waiting till she was ready. Victims of rape do not choose to become victims, hence, they should be treated with respect and seen like every normal person out there. Rape is becoming the order of the day in the society and it should be tackled NOW and more importantly young people should be advised to speak out when they face such situations so that people can learn and rape is been prevented and minimized.

  24. First of all, I’m sorry for the person who went through this trauma and I can’t possibly imagine what she is going through or went through. But I know that it is very difficult since the victim is always being blamed, sadly and I don’t understand why that is. I’ve always heard and seen people blaming the victim saying that she was dressed inappropriately and/or she didn’t say no when IT was actually happening, or why didn’t she fight back or yell. What they don’t realize is that sometimes the brain of the person who’s being raped freezes, which is why they can’t respond to what’s happening to them. However, I hope that the blame game stops one day and people realize that they victim isn’t to be blamed but the person who committed such a heinous act.

    1. I couldn’t agree with you more on this Saira. It is so true that victims are been spoken bad at to be the architect of the problem. However, one thing I have realized is that people judge someone else only when they are not in that situation. In this context, she didn’t want the sex but there is what we know to be emotions, and emotions can make we ladies get weak in such circumstances, so it just takes a deeper consciousness from the opposite sex to say NO, you do not want this. I will advise that people should speak out when such happens, although not easy but lives can be saved through speaking out.

  25. Abisola, the thing is she said no and no doesn’t mean that she should be convinced or her ex-boyfriend should force himself on her. All she wanted was to spend some time with him and get to know him better, and he should have respected that. I honestly dislike the fact that some men think that a woman is their “property” so they can do whatever they wish with her. If people stop thinking that women are weaker sex and they too are human, this world would be a better place and these incidents would hopefully not happen that much.

  26. I appreciated and connected deeply with this survivor’s story. Whenever a survivor of sexual assault makes the tough decision to share their experience, it is not just brave but also an integral part in the fight against rape culture’s stigma. While I applaud this individual’s courage, I strongly agree that it is a VERY personal choice to share a story like this one and it is not our right as readers to try to dissect the “cause” of assault or cast judgement onto the survivor. Similarly, we cannot pass judgement onto those who choose not to speak out, as victim shaming is a real and unfortunate thing that does still happen in our society. we see it even here on this thread. When individuals like this young woman share their stories, we can only hope that it brings more awareness to the individuality of each separate account of assault, and encourages those who need it to seek safe and professional help, while reminding them that they are not alone in what they’ve endured.

  27. This story is a great example of rape that a lot would not understand is rape because people would say ” well she shouldn’t have gone to his place and taken off her pants if she” or “she was asking for it” I don’t think you can ask for it when verbally the woman is saying no. Yes she might want it but not necessarily mean she is on the same page as you. “It’s not rape if she likes it” to some extent that is true, but if she feels uncomfortable the whole time and scarred for the rest of her life, we all know it is rape. I salute this woman to survive this horrific incident. A lot of people don’t understand what rape is or when it starts, so reading that story, you will learn a handful.

  28. For some reason, our society fails to understand that it is never the victim’s fault when they’re raped. No one should be questioning someone who’ve been raped, let alone blaming them because it is already difficult to share their experience. I honestly have so much respect for people who have the courage to share what they went through so other people can learn from them. It is already really hard for someone to tell others what had happened to them, so people should be more understanding rather than blaming the victim.

  29. While I have never been a victim of rape, I’ve know several individuals who have. Reading through some of the comments here attempting to deny this individuals feelings about the situation is merely frustrating. Every person has experienced being “caught up in the moment” similar to this woman. All in all the fact remains that she said “NO” on several occasions, yet he took it upon himself to force it to happen not once but twice. Attempting to discredit her cry for rape due to a few of her actions, that could be view as “misleading”, is like calling what he did to her an “accident”. I think many individuals fail to fully understand concept of rape, which is why they may have construed views. This is something that stays with a person forever, every time they get ready to engage in sexual activity with another individual this experience crosses their mind, when they have idle time on their hands these memories pop up. So this is not easy to recover from and I think individuals seem to focus more on the physicality rather than the mental aspects as well.

  30. Rape is such a difficult situation to handle alone. I am so sorry that anyone ever has to face a situation like that. The thought of rape disgusts me, how could someone sexually assault another human being? What kind of thoughts are going through this person’s mind? Do these type of people have any morality? Society is doing better with rape culture due to the many survivors engaging and communicating with one another. However this is a cause of concern, because this means rape incidents are increasing. We need to spread the word and not hide when these type of actions happen, but engage and stop these perpetrators from committing this form of act again.

    1. I agree with you that rape is a difficult situation to handle alone and to be completely honest, no one should even be experiencing it in the first place. I feel sympathy for the rape survivors and it disgusts me that a person could commit this crime. Furthermore, I agree that the rape culture is becoming more popular which is absolutely great, however, I feel that some survivors are shy, depressed or scared to come out and talk about their story or their feelings and get the help they need to become whole again and to be the person they need to be.

      1. I agree that many other people are still scared and/or shy about talking about their own experience, but that’s why we as a society need to come together and help these survivors express themselves. Society can make a group/institution to help these survivors in anyways possible, so that one day they may feel empowered again as whole. With society helping this will help spread rape culture awareness causing this crime also to go down.

      2. In regards to society coming together to help rape survivors, do you think those who are not willing to talk openly about it should have another source of communication or help and if so what would be the best way to implement this into our society? I was thinking that a helpline for them which is strictly confidential and the person on the line should not criticize or cause more harm to the survivor. In particular, the government should be informed of this situation and actively help the survivors to the best of their ability as they are responsible in protecting their citizens.

  31. To me rape is the worst crime to commit, due to the after-effects of crime it take a person away from society and leads to hard suffering including, suicide. In today’s society rape culture is increasing in popularity, as more cases of rape are being reported. This rise in popularity causes a concern within society and as such sexual assault survivors now have access to help brought by survivors themselves and the government. Rape today has evolved and perpetrators have and are creating new ways to commit sexual assault and cause harm to their victims. The rise in such a crime is also being implemented into TV and movies, which promotes a psychological issue in which someone may be swayed to commit sexual assault. In particular, rape is mostly recognized by society as somebody penetrating someone else without permission or acceptance, while this may be the case, there are many survivors of sexual assault that have their views and opinions on this definition and actually have the same if not similar psychological effects after the sexual assault is committed upon them. Given these points, I strongly believe that in society rape culture is becoming substantially big, which is a cause of concern and also a good thing. A cause of concern, because this means that rape is increasing in number and a good thing because this means that survivors are able to communicate with each other and help each other with what they have been through allowing for survivor to have psychological help that they need to prevent suicide and other effects.

  32. I feel like this is something people definitely need to be more aware of. In middle school and high school, they touch on it. They taught us rape is bad don’t put yourself in a dangerous situation, and make sure you have consent for sex. You walk away from this thinking what do I need to know this stuff for it’s never going to happen to me or someone I know. Reading these stories really makes me understand the impact of how this can affect you physically and emotionally this is a choice that was taken away from you. It also makes me understand fact that you don’t always have control over these situations. I think sharing your story is one of the bravest things a rape survivor could ever do. I also feel that more people need to feel the impact that this can really have on someone’s life so that they can try if possible to keep themselves out of dangerous situations, but like you said it is not always preventable.

  33. RSB omg thank you so much for saying that! I do not understand why it’s so hard for some people to understand the concept of rape. They know it’s disgusting but they somehow find a way to blame the victim anyway and I find that so disturbing. Sex and sexual activities are different, so even if they had some form of sexual activity, she still didn’t want sex and she made it CLEAR. This is not hard to understand, is it? Yes, going to his house when she knew his intentions and other actions of her were wrong but that still doesn’t justify rape. She said no and he still forced himself on her and that undoubtedly is rape.

  34. There is a very real, very common tendency to blame the victims of rape. This truth is disgusting and horrifying to consider. As much as it repulses me, I must admit that while reading the blog I found myself wondering why she didn’t leave at the first red flag. I am ashamed to confess this because the reality is that, it does not matter at all. No matter the circumstance or what the woman said or did or how she dressed, it did not give him the right to violate her. There is no possible justification. It is engrained into societies way of thinking that in some twisted way it is the victims fault. Hopefully, with more stories and activists that way of thinking will be obliterated sooner rather than later.

  35. It seems like a lot of people have the misconception that the majority of strangers commit rape. In reality and the sad truth is that many rapes are committed by people the victim knew. The scariest part of this whole concept is that the majority of the rapes committed by people that are known to the victim occur on major holidays when the there are a lot of people around. And this whole topic on rape reminds me of a feminist meeting that I attended at COD when one of my friends told us that she had been raped by her father .She expressed how hurt and disgusted she was at herself when in reality it wasn’t even her fault. She talked about how she wanted people to know her story and not to be afraid to get justice for themselves.

    1. I agree with you. Majority of rape incidents come from people you know. My aunt used to work at a counseling facility and would tell me that the statistics of rape are much higher than we think. A lot of rape victims don’t admit they have been raped because of embarrassment or they keep it a secret. It is sad to know that there are parents who rape their own children when they should be nurturing and disciplining their child in order to prepare them for life. I know people who have been raped and that is something they will carry for the rest of their lives. Yes, they may have moved on but that memory will never fade away.

      1. What is your male perspective on rape? Because for some people rape varies between males and females. I have been told by an ex male coworker that women get raped because they want to and if they didn’t want to get raped then they would have tried harder to stop it.

      2. If someone says no to sex. Then its no. A man should respect a women’s boundaries. It’s ignorant to blame a rape survivor for an incident of rape. Just because a girl is wearing revealing clothing doesn’t mean she’s asking for sex. I hate the fact that some men treat women like second class citizens. In order to lower the cases of rape, it should be more spoken about in school, work, church, and home. I wonder what goes on in the minds of criminals who commit rape. Don’t they realize they are stripping away the freedom of a human being when they commit that act.

      3. I have also heard about several rape incidents but this would only be overcome if person have a strong educational background with the positive though process about it duties toward humanity and society.

      4. Yes, I agree with that as well like what does go on in their minds. Is it just the lack of knowledge and ignorance taking the place of knowledge. Or is it a way for them to gain power.

    2. You definitely have a point about that misconception. I have a dear friend who was raped throughout her childhood. It wasn’t a stranger; rather, it was a family friend. The sad thing about it is that she tried telling her parents about it multiple times, but they didn’t believe her. Eventually, in her early teen years, everyone discovered the truth. Not once did her parents apologize to her, much less do anything to try to get her help. As a result, she now has really bad trust issues with everyone, friends and family alike. I can’t understand why her parents didn’t listen to her or believe her.

      1. Sadly, often people don’t want to believe the worst in others. Especially when it’s a child that is making statements about an adult. The child must be confused or mixed up. This is why I often childhood rape is downgraded to being molestation which is different, less traumatic than rape. As a member of the rape awareness movement for many many years, the one thing I teach most often is that the number one thing you could do when someone tells you they survived rape or even molestation is to believe them. It is really that simple: believe them and ask them what they need you to do to help them. Then find the resources in your state, your city, wherever you are.

      2. Has your friend shared her story or kept it to herslf? Were you a support for her when it happened? Because alot of people try and keep this topic a secret because many people feel ashamed about themselves.

      3. She talks about it only with people she trusts. I didn’t know her until long after the time period in which this occurred. Even after our friendship started, she was raped again, but she didn’t really ever tell me. I only found out because someone in her family happened to ask about the court case in front of me. I wasn’t sure how to be there for her because she said she didn’t want to discuss it or anything surrounding the topic. I got the impression that she just wanted to feel normal so I treated her the same as before I knew. The more recent incident, without a doubt, does make her feel ashamed. She has gotten help and takes it day by day.

  36. While rape can be a very touchy subject, I believe that in today’s society the definition of rape has stretched far too wide. I do agree that if someone says “no” man or woman and the other party continues to persist in sexual activities it is considered rape. Cold cut that is rape, none of this other “verbal rape” or rape with words that is very prominent in today’s society. Rape is physical, that is it. In reference to a situation where someone entices the other person? For a hypothetical say a woman is lying naked on a bed in a man’s apartment and she says “no” to sex but the man persists. First off if a woman is lying naked on any bed it would definitely turn a man on, hands down. However you have to wonder to yourself, “what in the world is going on in the head of that woman?” While it is enticing, the way to stop rape in that instance is to teach the person to control their physical needs and physical wants. Educate on the right and wrong.

  37. Rape culture is telling girls/ women to be careful who they talk to, how they dress, not to talk to strangers, not walk alone at night, what kind of shoes you’re wearing, not to wear a lot of jewelry, who you give your number to, how many people you sleep with, and so many more, and if are not careful and do what you have to do, then it’s your fault. Women are still getting blamed for getting raped; “oh maybe she was dressed provocative” or ” she’s probably one of those crazy girls”. So, it’s ok that women are getting raped? However a women dresses or acts doesn’t give man or anybody to take advantage of others.

    1. I agree that no matter what a woman does or how she dresses does not justify rape. Part of the rape culture is blaming victims and making them believe, in some twisted way, that it is their fault. It is blatantly wrong. However, I don’t think that teaching women, teenagers, girls, boys, whoever, to be careful is adding to the rape culture. It also depends on what is being taught though. For example, telling a young woman to not take drinks from strangers or not walk down a dark alley at night is teaching her to be cautious. No matter what, it is not her fault, but it is just crucial to try and be safe. That, in my opinion does not add to the rape culture. Telling a girl what clothes to wear, the quantity of men to sleep with, and things of that nature does add to rape culture because it is demanding that the person changes their self-image and personal beliefs in an attempt to stop rape.

  38. I salute the girl who shared her story. Admitting that you were raped is tough thing to accomplish. I wish more people were able to sympathize with rape survivors instead of placing the blame on them. Its disgusting how a man will still move on with the action of sex when the girl clearly said NO. To play devil’s advocate, the girl was taking her clothes off so the guy believed that was a sign she wanted to have sex. Just because a girl is taking her clothes off or wearing revealing clothing does not mean she wants to have sex. At the end of the day, if someone says NO. It means NO.

    1. Thanks for providing your insight about rape. Honestly like you said the more awareness someone has on rape the better the outcomes for it to be. The more people know about the effects of rape on the survivor and their families the more they know that hey its never their fault. Education is a big key factor and like mills’ theory rape is not okay and is an issue that affects the communities and individuals. A person is not like a Walmart their bodies aren’t available to everyone 24/7 when they say no the “store” is closed no more ifs, ands, or buts about it.

  39. Rape is very sensitive subject these days. Its something which ruins ones life and a person should know about the responsibilities having for the people around. basic education and upbringing really matters. It’s very easy to get involve but consequences have a huge mark on the character.

  40. The culture of rape that has been created by the media/our society is downright unacceptable. While everything mentioned above about the Survivor’s experience is extremely horrifying, something that I believe that is under-noticed is our reaction to these people’s stories. While there are many hotlines and outlets that these people can go to and ask for help, I still feel as if we are sweeping an issue under the rug as if it is not important. Somehow, we need to bring more awareness to this issue each and every day, as it is as prevalent in our society today as it has ever been. The comment about how the man feels no emotion about an encounter like this also intrigued me. While the Survivor has to live with this the rest of their life, the other party often times feels no remorse, and this needs to be changed.

  41. Rape culture is one of the worst aspects in all of sociology and within the world in general. Unfortunately, it is not an aspect that I see dying out for a long, long time. For that reason, people have to understand that rape is absolutely not the survivor’s fault. In any situation, rape is never because of the survivor. I think that is hard for many people to understand because of how men and women are viewed in today’s society. If a woman gets raped, it is her fault because she was wearing too little clothing or because she “seemed into it” at first. That is not the case. If a woman or man is taken advantage of to the point of which they are raped, it is the rapist’s fault, always. There are also many topics in the media that make rape seem acceptable. For example, Bonniejean mentioned the song, “Blurred Lines,” in class and I used to actually like that song until I realized it was about rape. Society tries to make rape seem like it is not a big deal in today’s world. Obviously, that is completely intolerable and wrong.

  42. I think you hit this right on, what some people do not understand about rape culture is that it isn’t just about sex but so much more. in a lot of cases such as the “Stanford” incident, if you read the victim impact statement, it shows truly just how broken that girl was and that she will have to live with that for the rest of her life. and the fact that some people even have the audacity to say “oh she was asking for it” don’t even know the magnitude of the situation and are ignorant to what is really going on.

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