"they said nothing of the cemetery growing inside the body of the girl. nothing of the graveyard where she will bury her trust in men."
And the not trusting men thing is always put back onto us, like the real loss is that we’ll be less available for relationships with men. I had a (male) therapist who refused to let me see the female therapists in the youth centre where he worked after I was raped. I told him I couldn’t talk to it with a guy, and I needed to unpack my thoughts, and he said the most important thing is that I “get over [my] fear of men”, when I had JUST been raped a week ago and couldn’t even talk about it with anybody then. And he kept encouraging me to have relationships with men, and this was the biggest impact of my trauma to him, that another woman was taken off the “market”. >:\
My male friends who read the journal entry where I talked about what happened, when I had barely been able to process it & just spilled my guts when I couldn’t sleep in the dark and can’t crying, and needed to unpack what was going on, kept internet-detectiving me, asking me what REALLY happened, looking at details, trying to figure out the layout of the room, could I have escaped, why didn’t I escape, well he stopped choking you, so why were you still afraid, etc… and that it wasn’t right for me to accuse a man of this (ON MY OWN PRIVATE FRIENDSLOCKED JOURNAL WHERE I NEVER NAMED HIM AT ALL) with so little evidence, and maybe he just really didn’t know, and it’s horrible that I think this bad thing of him.
The guys who liked me & wanted to date me, that found out, kept saying that if they were there they would have stopped him, that they’d have beaten him up, that they’d have saved me, that if they were there now they would go over and fight him, that they want to track him down and send him hatemail, despite my pleading with them that they not say these things, that I don’t WANT vengeance, that I don’t want anybody to be hurt, that anything they would want to do would just make things WORSE, that the guy would just come after ME, that the guy is connected to me and my family. But on and on it was about them wanting to be the hero who rescues me and then I will realize how wonderful they are and fuck them.
And I am just so fucking sick of how a woman’s rape becomes ALL ABOUT MEN. All about the men who raped her, how awful it is that their lives will be affected, or even how awful it is that SHE might think bad things of him. Maybe he’s not a bad guy. Maybe it was a mistake. Maybe she didn’t say no enough, or led him on, or didn’t escape. It’s not fair to him if ANYBODY thinks of him as a rapist unless other men decide it is.
And it’s all about the men who she knows now, or might meet in the future, or that won’t get the opportunity to have sex with her because she’s now irrationally afraid of men. It’s about all the men who won’t be able to hear her most intimate thoughts about being violated because she can’t talk about it with a man.
It’s about all the men who can now use this opportunity to get sex, or how unfair it is that she won’t let them use the opportunity to be a hero. It’s about men proving how MANLY and AWESOME they are for beating up the rapist in their imaginary minds and fantasies, or threatening harm in real life that would only make things worse for the victim. And if it happened, even if she begged them not to, it’d be her fault for starting it. Why did she say these things if she didn’t want this to happen? Are we SURE this really happened then? Why would you NOT want retribution if it really happened?
It’s about all the men, past, present, future, imaginary, and otherwise. And what a selfish bitch she is for not considering how they feel.
In a society that thinks my body and my sexuality’s worth is in its utility to men, is it any wonder that they also want ownership over my rape?
I once read about a rape crisis center that had men on staff specifically in order to show victims that men can be kind, too. It was so sick. Even in such a horrible moment, the most important thing is that your opinion of men isn’t compromised.