you know what a really effective way is to divide the left?
like, that is a fairly divisive thing to do, no?
if assange actually gave a shit about having a unified left he would accept the consequences of his actions and pass on the Wikileaks torch to a less grotesque human rather than transforming his political group into Rape Apologism, The Legal Fund
[manifestations of rape culture, talk of violence]
so, last night.
Elise Nagy, “Bruises and Birthday Cake: What We Talk About When We Talk About Rihanna and Chris Brown”, In Our Words (via trenchantashell)
But we shouldn’t also talk to these people about why they are returning to this abusive relationship, especially if it’s a repetitive thing?
I’ve had friends, and even my mother, return to bad relationsips where they were treated badly. As far as I know they weren’t physically abused but they were made to feel like they weren’t worth their partners effort to find a job or that they weren’t enough for that person not to cheat and yet they continued to return that relationship, even when they had previously admitted that person was horrible.
Shouldn’t we be letting these people know they are better than this and there is someone out there who respects them for who they are and doesn’t treat them bad?
I’m having difficulty articulating my thoughts at the moment, so please forgive me some incoherence. This is as best as I can do:
As far as I know, there isn’t anything to suggest that Rihanna and Chris Brown are back in a relationship, just collaborating on the one song. But either way, it isn’t anyone’s business to criticise Rihanna for allowing him back into her life. To do so does not help her, or any other survivor of abuse (sexual, physical or mental/emotional).
When we criticize or shame a survivor for coping with their abuse in whatever way they choose, what do we hope to achieve? Are we scolding them for being weak? We ought to know by now that being abused does not necessarily make one weak (nor does it make them strong, for that matter, although some people may find strength in dealing with abuse. There is no one universal Abuse Survival narrative). Do we think that we can shame victims out of being in abusive relationships? To critisize them for being abused is to say that the abuse is their fault, that it was their responsibility to not be abused, rather than their abuser’s responsibility to not abuse them.
And the part where we’re basically telling them, “you shouldn’t let people abuse you, control your behaviour, shame you, or try to humiliate you… but you should listen to us and let us shame you out of your ‘bad’ behaviour” — it reads like abuse. It might come out of good intentions, it might be ‘for [the victim’s] own good’ but it’s the same sort of controlling behaviour abusers use to control their victims. We can’t force people to abandon whatever reasons they have to staying in an abusive relationship or staying in contact with their abuser; that is a decision they need to make for themselves, and we need to respect them and their autonomy, whether we understand the choices they make or not.
[Trigger warning: sexual assault]
It’s not normal and not okay to hump someone in their sleep. (Unless you work it out in advance, but obviously that’s not an option in Cosmoland.) And it doesn’t strike me as an innocent expression of dudely appreciation. It strikes me as a passive-aggressive way to punish for her not putting out, to prove that she can’t stop him from using her body anyway. If I were her, I’d be very clear about saying “Please stop trying to do sexual things with me after I’ve said no. If you don’t commit to stopping this, I don’t feel safe sleeping in the same bed as you.”
Cosmo’s suggestion is “I love having sex with you, but when I’m sleepy, I don’t feel sexy.” Because God forbid you actually not want it sometimes; you have to give a better excuse than that! And then they go on to recommend that she have more “spontaneous” sex with him, because clearly his real issue here is that he’s just a spur-of-the-moment sort of guy!
I don’t have much more to say than “ugh.” I’m not a sexless shrew-harpy, I swear, but I don’t think the answer to every problem is “gently coddle his ego while sexually servicing him.” Men are grownups and they won’t crumble into tears or leave you forever if you talk to them in grownup language.