Rape Victim

The Worth of a Soul

 

I was talking to someone and she said this, “And deep down, we had a masochist, a young, teenage slut, who wanted nothing more than to curl up in a hole and die, because she was dirty, scared, and shamed.”

Does something ever put you in a spot where you want to simultaneously hug and protect one person and beat the crap out of everyone else that surrounds them? This did…

Let’s take this from the top. Why would you want to harm someone you allegedly love? Meaning who taught her to be a masochist? Who convinced her that she was a “teenage slut” and forgot that we don’t have a problem with teenage “boys will be boys”?

When she wanted to “curl up in a hole and die”, who was there to hold her and tell her that she was more than a “slut”…and while I’m at it, why is it so wrong to enjoy sex?…

That’s the last part, “dirty, scared, and shamed”…

Why?

Dirty? Not this young Lady. Nope, that isn’t what I see. I see smart, hard working, ambitious, attractive.

Scared, yeah, because society says she should be…of what, though? Not that what I think should matter or that my opinion should make a difference in a far away life but, if she’s scared of what the people close to her think, it isn’t her that’s messed up, it’s them…

Shamed, who told her that? Who told her that the standard that made it ok for her partner made it wrong for her? What idiot hypocrite said that because she’s a girl she’s not supposed to enjoy sex and if she does, it’s wrong? What bunch of morons decided that she deserved shame?

I have to ask myself, if she was my daughter, how would I react?

She is young enough to be my daughter. I think my reaction, knowing it now, would be to tell her she’s beautiful. That what happened TO her was because people are stupidly judgmental. That what she sees and what I see are different. I did tell her that, and will again. I said this, “You are more than an object to be owned and discarded or manipulated.” I also told her that she has greater worth than just being “a good fuck.”

People don’t get to own people. We don’t have the tiniest right to create what she thought of herself.

When did we forget that? What mom tells her kid that she’s dirty forgetting that the same mom had to get laid to have the kid. What dad tells her that she has no worth when he must have thought her mom was worth getting naked with to create the kid? What part of “it takes two to tango” makes half of the people dancing worth less than the other and holds up one as being a “man’s man” and calls the other a “slut”?

Yeah, this pisses me off because now, someone that DOES NOT deserve it and has not earned it, has to learn that she wasn’t wrong. That there’s no harm in enjoying sex. That she has worth beyond just being used and manipulated.

Truthfully, I think she’ll get past the things that were inflicted on her. I think there’s strength and resilience in there. It won’t be over night but, I have faith in the young lady’s ability to listen to reason…

The problem is, some people aren’t her. Some don’t have the chance she had to escape. Some don’t have someone to tell them that the lies are just that, lies.

It is NEVER our right to take away someone’s humanity.

*****

I wrote the part up there before work and was going to end it there. I changed my mind because some things occured to me…

I wonder if some of the reason I am so angry is because I never had any children? Is it because I see someone that would make a fine daughter, one that I would be proud to call my own, treated like she was not worth anything?

Or is it because I see someone that, even given what she’s been through, that were I not happily married and 30 years younger, I would look at as a potential spouse? One that a husband would think “I’m not worth this woman…”

Or is it that I see a friend hurt and I can not do anything to prevent the damage that was done before we met?

Or a combination of all of the above?

*****

These things also crossed my mind while I was at work…

Why do we teach that they deserve to be worth only a spread set of legs and nothing more and then blame them for doing that? They deserve far better. They are far better. A woman is more than a body. If she does get laid then we don’t tell her it’s wrong unless we condemn her partner. We have to be honest with ourselves and ask why we taught them to be masochists? Is it to make ourselves better than them? Why do we have to make them feel bad for us to feel vindicated?

I rarely make promises. This is one of the rare times I will. I promise that no matter what you think of yourself, even when you are old and gray, in my minds eye, there will always be the perfection of that pic of a young mother I pointed out to you. That, in the mirror that is MY minds eye, you are perfect just the way you are. That there is nothing you have ever done that will ever make me think any less and it’s not possible to make me think any more because you need NO improvement. That’s my promise, that with me, just one stranger, you precious and worthy of love and respect.

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Because It Needed To Be Said…

I haven’t written in some time. I’ve been on “sabbatical” or just taking some time off. Truth be told, writing the blog hurts. I’m not big on saying that or making excuses so, please forgive me for that. I’m also not one to let a bit of pain stop me from doing what’s needed…

I was looking at a couple of old posts from last year and comparing them to what’s happening and see that societal change is slow. It seems that few people actually think or grow as they age, what happens is that they die off. *sigh* Meaning, that the next generation and their views supplant those that have become deceased. Very few of us have “semi-colon lives”. Those of us that do are still like the deceased ones in that our lives have splits in them, the before and the after. Mine is one so, I was lucky and able to change. I digress…

*****

I keep seeing people talking *editorial, I’m a Fb junkie* about “making America great again” and feel sorry for them. If they don’t recognize that politicians, ALL POLITICIANS, come and go and have nothing to do with the greatness of the country, they missed the point. It isn’t who is in office *editorial, please do not read into this that I am talking about any specific person or office* that makes this country great. The common citizens do. The fact that I am able to have and cherish people with widely differing political views is one sign of that.

The common citizens do. The fact that I am able to have and cherish people with widely differing political views is one sign of that. The fact that I am able to drive as far as I am able or inclined and still not have to cross a checkpoint does. That I am able to work at a job and occupation of my choosing does. That I have the freedom to  f**k up, stand up, and try again does. That I am not hungry does. That I have the freedom to publicly disagree with the government and individuals does…

*****

…and now for that disagreement…

This post was brought on by two things that boil down to one, blaming the victim.

Do you know what we call people that commit crimes? Answer: criminals. We don’t call them “rape victims”. We don’t call them “transgender”. We don’t call them “women” or “men” or “Christian” or “Pagan”. We call them “rapists”, “pedophiles”, “felons”, and “perpetrators”.

We don’t get to claim “presumption of innocence” for ourselves while denying that to those we don’t understand. Period. If we presume to label one group because they are different than ourselves, then we should have the moral courage to desire that same label to be applied to us.

I don’t know if I know anyone that is transgender. I haven’t asked. It really has no bearing on anything, to me anyway. What gender someone appears to be and carries themselves as is what they are.Why would I question that? I suppose, if they want me to know, they could tell me but, I just don’t really care. Being transgender doesn’t make them either good or bad. I’ll base what I think of them on their character and not anything else. Always have been that way, always will…

On the other hand, I know several people that have told me that they are rape victims. Again, I didn’t ask…and am not really sure why they think I’m worth their trust that they’ve shown by telling me. I’ve said something similar to this before but, I’m doing it again…

Your worth to me is because of who you are, not what happened to you. To those of you that I’ve used the word “love” to or about, what happened to you neither increases nor diminishes that. You, the individuals are precious and treasured. I can not tell you to “get over it” because nightmares fade but never quite go away. All I have to help is to let you know that before you told me, you had a place in my tiny heart and after finding out, that place is still yours as long as you allow me to keep it there for you. I hope that is enough to help because that’s all I have.

*****

Do you know what will be the downfall of America? When we pretend to be victims and forget that we are not. When we diminish the REAL victims because we are selfish and full of ignorance.

 

You Are Not Damaged, You Are Loved

Sometimes what I want doesn’t matter. It makes not the tiniest bit of difference if something causes me discomfort. This period of this blog is a time like that…

I was an addict. Specifically, I used I.V. Meth…the alcohol and weed don’t matter in this context…I am able, still, ten years later, to see the scars on my arm from that usage. In a sense, my body was violated…by ME. I have huge issues with “trust” because of who I was around and who I was. I hated myself. Those were things I inflicted on myself. I WAS NOT A VICTIM…There is no one to blame but myself. The things that were done to me were acts of volition…

I can not imagine what it is like to hate yourself because of something  that someone else did. I can not imagine what it is like to not be able to trust anyone around you because they either could be someone that will violate you or tell you to accept what happened. I can not begin to think about how I would deal with that fear.

Specifically, I do not want to think about how I would react to being raped.

There is no part of that action that should be tolerated. We have a system that blames the victim. That tells her to “get on with your life” as if nothing happened. We pretend like the pain ends when the scars fade.

Distrust never goes away. Being violated never ends. Those may be pushed into the background but, they always live there. The nightmares fade but, some days are worse than others. Looking over your shoulder and expecting it to happen again becomes a way of life.

*editorial, the ONLY basis for comparison I have is as an addict. I am not making any moral equivalent between what I did and being raped. It merely gives me a tiny bit of insight into “surviving”*

I don’t know how to “fix” it. I wish I did. I am good, mostly, at dealing with what I did to me. Some days are bad. Some days, everything reminds me. Some nights, I am afraid to sleep because the monsters come out. Those things I do understand. You are never “cured”. I know that from me and what I’ve been told by friends that have survived.

*sigh*

I wish there was a way to tell the real victims that the pain would end. That there was a way to make them believe that everything will be all right. There is not. All I can do is to tell them that from the outside there is nothing wrong with them. That they had no choice.  That what was taken from them can, in time be replaced. That you can learn to trust. That the only person that sees you as “dirty”, “damaged” or “flawed” is yourself and, to us, you are worth being loved and cherished. That you are not an “object”. That you have value.

I think that, we as a society, have a skewed set of values. We blame the true victims and praise the recovering addicts. Why should I get support and praise for not being a criminal when someone that was harmed by a criminal is made to feel ostracised? Why do we not do everything in our power to help them? What I am able to do is say “You are loved. You have value. Your courage is astounding. That you are able to go on when I’d curl up and hide shows strength I can not imagine having”.

I know I wrote a similar “support post” yesterday. I will probably write more in coming days.

If I thought it would help to write exploring ways to stop the crime, I would. We know it’s a crime. We have made the penalties harsh and extended the punishment far past the time in prison. Those have not stopped it. No child old enough to know what sex is thinks that rape is legal. If you took a poll here, no one would say it’s good, yet it still happens. No amount of penalty seems to make it not happen. *editorial, I AM NOT advocating lighter penalties. My view is far harsher than that. I am in favor of “boxes” for that crime, not rehabilitation* I do not want to understand the psychology of  rapist. No amount of “education” has changed the fact that they exist. They, rapists, know what they are doing is “wrong” and just don’t care.

What can be done is to show empathy to the victims. We, men, can show understanding for “distrust” of us and put our egos aside. We can react with compassion and caring. We can not say, “get on with your life” to someone that has had their life shaken to its core. We can give time and space for healing. We can reassure the victims that, to us, they are the same loved person they always have been. We can let them know that nothing has changed in the way we feel for them, that they are not “damaged goods”. We can let them have room for the “bad days”. We can say “I love you” and let that be enough when they need to hear that and only that…

I love you. Nothing will ever change that.

There Is Nothing About This That I Want To Write…

I wrote yesterday’s and then, later I talked to one of the people I love. *sigh* There are things that I wish I could change. There are hurts I would take on myself to take away from people I love…

It is never ok to blame a victim. It is never ok to say “she brought it on herself”. We have this idea that coming forward “ruins the promising life of a young man”. No. His actions hurt a promising young lady and, now, his actions have ruined his own life. It isn’t the victim’s fault if she comes forward. Blame has NEVER been her’s…

Rape victims did not bring it on themselves. Saying “she’s a tease”, “she shouldn’t have been drunk”, “she shouldn’t have dressed like that”, “she could have said no”, “she was asking for it”, or any other excuse a rapist can make does NOT excuse rape. Period. If she doesn’t say “yes”, the answer is no. Her body belongs to her. She is not an object or a possession to be used. Even after the fact, she is not “damaged” or “ruined”. Something was done TO her against her will. To me, that is the ultimate crime, making the inside of someone “not safe”. To have given them a reason to think they deserve what happened or how they feel afterward is the true violation.

What we have, all we will ever be, is inside our skin. Our hearts, minds, and souls occupy that space. It is the only one we have and the only thing we will own. To violate that is to presume that what we want is more important than that person. We are not. There is no value in my life that makes it greater than another’s. When I die, the world ends…for me. It is the same for every other person on the planet. Why, then, is the perception that HER life and body would be any less valuable?

*sigh*

There will be more posts. For now, this is all I am able to process or write. These NEED to be written. Men need to be told, by men, that women are not objects. That they, women, have just as much right to dignity and possession of self as any man. Women need to be told, by men, that they are cherished and treasured. That they are our mothers, wives, sisters, daughters and cousins. That, no matter what is done to them, they are in no way diminished.

Still, for this day, this is a start…