There's been a buzz lately about female rapists and their male victims. One particularly heart wrenching story appeared on Jezebel yesterday and to those men, I offer sympathy and support.
However there's another narrative taking place and it's a dangerous one: the male victim of "seduction". The American Psychological Association reports that 26% of male responders said they had been seduced by a woman's sexual behavior. Of those encounters, half were "unwanted". Unwanted sexual encounter blamed on seduction?
This, I have a problem with.
"Seduction" places the blame for male behavior on women. You think I'm being dramatic, right? Guess what. Blaming "seduction" for a sexual encounter that a man didn't want or later regrets is the reason women are executed for their own rapes in other parts of the world. "She made me want it! I couldn't stop. She caused my penis to . . ." It's the same old evil temptress trope and it's wrong.
Seduction is not the same as coercion. Seduction is not the same as physical force. How did she seduce you? The way she walks? The way she flips her hair? The way she was nice to you or looked you in the eye? Women have been blamed for centuries for planting seeds in the male mind. AND IT'S BULLSHIT.
There was a Reddit thread a few months ago where male rapists answered questions about why they did it. It was called Ask A Rapist. Here are a few quotes:
"She just had this unusually sexual way of carrying herself, I don't know if anyone knows what I'm talking about, but she'd kind of leave her mouth hanging open/bend over quite a bit"
Sounds like this rapist was "seduced by sexual behaviors". Note, I said this rapist who responded to the Ask-A-Rapist thread.
"Most girls don't really understand how horny guys are, how much stronger guys are, how guys will rationalize what they do. I see feminists and women on the Internet saying that no means no and women should be able to get as drunk as they want and not be sexually assaulted, and I couldn't agree me. But the reality of the situation is that women have to be careful because guys are one way when they're hanging out and another way when they're horny or worse drunk and horny. That doesn't make what happened okay, but it is what it is."
Got that? A rapist said that. It wasn't the woman's "seductive" outfit or glance or the way she danced or walked or how much she drank or the fact she kissed him or was pretty. It was rape.
Can men and boys be sexually exploited? Absolutely. Can women be the aggressors of rape? Yes. Can women pester men into sex? Sure. (Women get pestered into sex all the time and that's not rape either). Is it the woman's fault she got the guy too horny by being "seductive" and he couldn't stop? The answer is no.
Hear it. Say it. If you are a man and you don't want to have sex, say no. Being too turned on to say no isn't the same as being coerced. So say no, if you mean no. No means no for everyone.
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Filed under: Daddy issues