Sexual Problems

Q:

Define ‘RAPE’

Yep, I’m gonna bring up a difficult and controversial issue! So I’m gonna ask right off the bat that everyone try to be respectful… I’m trying to instigate a serious and educational conversation, not a flame war.

I bring this up because I was reading a message board over on IMDB about the drunken sex scene in ‘Observe and Report’ that referred to it as rape. This board had degenerated into a long and intense war on what does and doesn’t constitute rape, so I’m asking this hopefully more lucid community… where do you draw the lines for the definition?

Some numbers to chew on:
-1 in 6 women will be sexually assaulted at some point in their lives.
-College age women are 4x more likely to be sexually assaulted.
-It’s estimated that 60% of all rapes are NOT reported to the police.
-73% of all rape victims know their rapist.
-Only 6% of all rapists will ever spend any time in jail.
(http://www.rainn.org/statistics)

When most people think of rape, they think of violent rape. But just because physical force isn’t used doesn’t mean it’s not rape. Statistically 17% of reported rapes required no physical force (http://www.rainn.org/statistics). I would lay a healthy bet that most unreported rapes are of this type, without physical force, so that’s a fair number of women in America who have been raped without being physically forced. Scary, right? This means that you probably know someone who was the victim of a non-violent rape. Scarier yet? It’s reasonably likely that you know someone who has COMMITTED a non-violent rape. And scariest? How many people each year commit rape without thinking they’ve done so, because of their definition of what rape is?

scarlettewiththerope


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Answers 8 | 3

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Michale45

Michale45over a year ago

Answer 1 of 11

harliegerl27

harliegerl27over a year ago

Answer 2 of 11

Non violent rape

Well I totally agree with your post! Let me share my recent experience with you. My husband and I have been having marriage problems for a few years. So bad the he completely crushed my heart by his attitudes and demeanor towards me and pushed me away. I ended up having an affair a few months back. I told him all about it and I cut off the other relationship in hopes to try and work on my. However, a few weeks ago my husband and I were in the. He told me to get on the back seat and have sex with him or he would leave me. I began cruik very hard and telling him no. But he demanded it. So I got in the back seat. He was not violent with me but kept pressuring me to let him have me right then....in my car in a parking lot. I felt so demeaned and I just kept crying so hard and saying no please don't do this. Then he proceeded to pull himself out of his pants and demanded I give him oral sex. Even with all my tears and telling him no he was still fully aroused. I was mortified! I was so upset and crying so hard that I almost threw up. He finally conceded and stopped. But then a week later he did it to me in bed. He got on top of me and began to have sex with me Ben though I cried and said no! And he wouldn't stop when I asked him. Again, he did not hurt me physically. But he certainly wounded me so much emotionally that I know I will never be with him sexually again and now we are headed for divorce because of this!

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BritishGuy

BritishGuyover a year ago

Answer 3 of 11

Rape is all a bit confusing nowadays wit...

Rape is all a bit confusing nowadays with all these grey areas but I've always assumed if a girl comes back to my place with me and we're making out she knows where its going.

I like being under the influence a little sometimes but I wouldn't want either of us to get really drunk.

I think the problem is when you've had some alcohol and your inhibitions are gone you do things you wouldn't. You wake up the next morning and suddenly your back to your normal self with all the inhibitions and then your like uh oh!

I think maybe a lot of things that are called rape are rape. I mean it isn't hard to tell when somebody is enjoying themselves in bed so theres no way rough sex could honestly be considered rape.

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Kyle Miracle

Kyle Miracleover a year ago

Answer 4 of 11

Is it rape if a girl never says "No"?...

Is it rape if a girl never says "No"?

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scarlettewiththerope

scarlettewiththeropeover a year ago

Answer 5 of 11

I'd just like to add that's it's not as ...

I'd just like to add that's it's not as uncommon as people think for a woman to physically 'enjoy' even a violent rape. Psychologists aren't sure why, I've read some arguments that it's an evolutionary protection so that a woman is less likely to be physically damaged by the rape, etc.

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Simone de Boudoir

Simone de Boudoirover a year ago

Answer 6 of 11

And while I think of it, if your partner...

And while I think of it, if your partner explicitly asks you to use a condom and you get sneaky and take it off without her knowledge and penetrate her, that's also rape.

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Simone de Boudoir

Simone de Boudoirover a year ago

Answer 7 of 11

I was raped by an ex-boyfriend in my thi...

I was raped by an ex-boyfriend in my third year of university. It was non-violent, and coerced (with the threat of violence).

Rape is rape when there is no consent. And that includes someone saying yes, and then changing their mind. And someone submitting. Submission is not the same as consent.

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ma4t

ma4tover a year ago

Answer 8 of 11

You bring up many good points. A Crimina...

You bring up many good points. A Criminal Law class I took shed some light on the subject.

If at any time either person says they want to stop, and the other person continues to the point of penetration, it's rape. Yes, men get raped, too.

You can change your mind at the last second. You can be in bed with your legs open and a guy lying on top of you, and if you tell him to stop and he penetrates, that's rape. If you are having intercourse, and you tell him to stop - for any reason - and he continues, that's rape.

Using any type of threat or intimidation is aggravated rape. I will shoot you if you don't comply. That's aggravated rape. Using size advantage is rape. Using drugs or alcohol - definitely rape. Alcohol is not consent.

Past sexual encounters are not consent. If a wife or gf says not, it's rape. If the campus slut says not, it's rape. If a prostitute says no, it's rape.

But women still have to be smart. If you go to a guy's home and have a few drinks, and you claim you were raped, you will have a very hard time being taken seriously by the cops given the circumstances. Maybe legally you are 100% right, and in a perfect world you should expect to be able to go to a guy's house and shake hands at the end of the night. But don't put yourself at risk!

Being right will NOT protect you. If you think the guy wants to have sex (and we almost always do), and you are not sure or you know you don't want to have sex, don't go to his apartment and have a few drinks, get on the sofa, fondle each other, and then think he's going to be 100% happy when you look at your watch and say, "Oh, look at the time," and run out.

That would be like driving through a green light when a runaway cement truck is barreling toward you, thinking that the "right of way" is going to save you. "But, Doctor, I had a green light!" In driver training, they called that being "Dead Right." You're right, but now you're dead.

So even though it offends the concepts of fairness and the advances women have made, being right will not save you.

Don't leave your expensive camera on the park bench while you go to the bathroom. And don't get in to situations where people normally have sex when you don't want to. Don't take risks.

And boys need to stop telling their buddies, "Yeah, when she says no she really means yes." Parents need to take their sons aside and tell them that no really means no. And they need to let them know the consequences of rape. Sure, a very small % of rapist ever spend a night in jail, but once you're on the sex offender registry, it doesn't matter if it was statutory rape with a 15 year old or a violent rape of a toddler, you ARE a sex offender.

Bottom line - don't take risks. Any sexual contact without consent, at any point, is rape. Past sexual encounters are not consent.

*** By the way, I am NOT a lawyer and this is NOT legal advice. ***

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sexpert

sexpertover a year ago

Answer 9 of 11

I struggle with both sides of this. Beca...

I struggle with both sides of this. Because I am pansexual, sometimes I fool around with girls that are not out, or maybe have never fooled around with other girls before. If this happens, I run the risk of her feeling bad about our encounter and then calling it something non-consensual, when really it's something that she regrets because of internalized homophobia, or social pressures, or whatever you want to call it. And yes, a girl did call rape on me when I was younger (I don't think she understood what that meant though - neither of us did). And yes, my family got kicked out of the church. The fact that it was her idea meant nothing. The fact that we both enjoyed it meant nothing. The fact that her brother had been raping her for almost a year to the point that she was worried about being pregnant meant nothing. I didn't even get a chance to defend myself.

Now, do not take my story and assume that every girl that states that she was rape is a liar, or being manipulative, or was asking for it. NO WAY! Rape and sexual assaults are horrible, traumatic experiences. There is a huge stigma to being a rape survivor. The worst kinds of things are said to you, even by professionals. you lose all your power, your voice, your agency. Women don't just make this shit up. Even the girl that felt bad about our sexual experiences together and called it rape when I define it as something else was going through something very deep and emotional. She felt ashamed and confused, and unable to put words to what happened. The homophobia of the home and the church that she came from was a huge powerful force, and the only word that she had was rape. Even then, she needed help. She needed someone to listen to her, and to listen to he pain and help her work through what she was going through.

So I have seen the bad side of things, and I would hate to call something rape if it wasn't. That being said, anytime a girl (or guy, or whatever gender category you would like to identify as) indicates that they are not interested, they are unsure, they are scared, they don't think it's a good idea - sex should not happen. Under this definition, yes girls can rape guys. If a guy is hesitant, and the girl challenges him on his masculinity (in a heterosexual relationship, homosexuals can do it to) and tells him that if he doesn't have sex with her, he will be less of a man in her eyes, then that to me is rape, because you are setting up consequences (in this case emotional) for not having sex.

I've seen people say things like "if you loved me, you would do it", "it's your job as my girlfriend", or even just pouting and sulking if they don't get sex. All of these create negative consequences for not having sex, and I think they are all unhealthy. Would it stand up in court? Probably not. Is it healthy? Hells no, and it should be treated as such, because if you are putting your own sexual needs above the mental, emotional, and physical well being of your partner, sorry, that's bullshit and needs to be called on as abusive.

I take this very seriously and there was one time with my current bf, that I wanted sex, and he said he was tired (and he definitely was) and then I was pouting, and I thought I was being cute, but really, I was pressuring him into sex for twenty minutes. We ended up having sex, but after thinking about it, I apologized to him and told him I wouldn't do it again, because I expect to give the same treatment as I expect from him, and if I don't want to be guilt tripped or bugged or pressured into sex, then I'm not going to do it to him. Just because he's a guy doesn't make it okay.

Now mind you, he thought that I was a little weird for apologizing and he was like "uh, I like sex, I like sex with you, we're all good" but it's important for me to understand that pressuring people into sex is not healthy, and being a woman does not exclude me from being capable of harm.

I think the term rape and sexual assault have been "legalified" (I make up words, stop mocking me) and we tend to see them in terms of if they would stand up in court or not. That being said, I think there are a number of unhealthy relationship practices, by both men and women (and everyone in between), and they need to be acknowledged as forms of rape and sexual assault, so people understand the emotional damage that they can cause. No, it won't hold up in court, and the police won't take you seriously, but dammit, the emotional impact is real, and you need to be able to communicate what is going on. If you don't use the word rape or sexual assault, if the word "unhealthy" is a better descriptor, don't let anyone take away your agency over your own sexuality.

Sorry for the long post.

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whitequeen

whitequeenover a year ago

Answer 10 of 11

This is such a slippery slope. I also ha...

This is such a slippery slope. I also have wondered about this question and I'm glad you posted it. A few years ago I met someone in person that I had a relationship with online. Becuase it was far away we agreed to meet at a hotel to sit and talk in person. There was expectation that something might happen or might not. When I saw him I was totally grossed out and not at all interested in persuing anything more. However since I was 7 hours from home I agreed to rest in the room with him and give things a chance. He tried to make a move and I told him no but he didnt believe me and we ended up having sex even though he hadnt brought a condom and I was adament about using one. There was crying and comforting and such before he actually did. Because I didnt scream or fight and also because parts of it were pleasurable I wondered if it was just a really bad decision of stupidity or rape. I mean, I went there right? and we had fooled around online... so its a confusing subject. Sorry to provide no answers here but sadly I think its a thing many women have felt confused about in the post play.

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scarlettewiththerope

scarlettewiththeropeover a year ago

Answer 11 of 11

Sorry that this is so long winded! I com...

Sorry that this is so long winded! I commend anyone that reads this in full lol… though I tried to cut out all the fat and think I made some very lucid points here. (I should have been a freaking lawyer.)

My answer on this subject comes from my personal experience, and my view of the world as a feminist (See my post on defining feminism, http://www.leftos.com/opinion/view/403).

‘Rape’ is when one of the parties does not consent to a sexual act. I think most of us who are sane humans realize this. To me, the shades of gray and stickiness come in when defining the nature of consent!


DRINKING/DRUGS:
There’s an argument that when you’re drunk, you can’t give consent. This is something that our legal system has battled about, and I personally don’t know the official legal stance on it, though I know that if a woman gets drunk, has sex, then regrets it the next day she can cause all kinds of problems for the man involved. And you know what? It’s because I’m a feminist that I disagree with this! I am a fully capable human being, and if I CHOOSE to imbibe substances that affect my judgment, I am still responsible for the decisions I make while under the influence of those substances. If I drink and drive, I’m responsible for that action. Doesn’t matter if I regret doing it the next day. If I drink, smoke pot, etc, and boink someone I wouldn’t normally, I’m responsible for that action too. Now, if I pass out and then someone has sex with me, that’s not a choice I made drunk; that’s something someone does to me and IS rape

With all that said, I think it’s WRONG (but not criminal) to have sex with someone who you suspect would not normally choose to have sex with you.


ROOFIES:
Now, if I’m slipped a roofie and have sex with someone, THEN I was raped. If I did NOT CHOOSE to imbibe all the substances affecting my decision making processes, then THAT is rape, because my ability to choose for myself was taken away without my consent/ knowledge. The person who changes the participants state of mind is the responsible party. So, question: What if a girl is at a bar, a guy slips her a roofie, then she ends up having sex with a different guy who had no knowledge of the roofie? My Answer: THE GUY WHO GAVE HER THE ROOFIE IS GUILTY OF RAPE EVEN IF HE DID NOT HAVE SEX WITH HER. He’s the one who took away her ability to make decisions, therefore he is responsible for what happens to her.

Real Life Example:
This happened to my friend and me a year ago. Thanks to an incident that I’ll go into in the next session, I’m very conscious of my state of mind and personal safety; I realized that what I was feeling was disproportionate to what I’d drank. I started looking for my friend…then I started to have mild hallucinations and difficulty breathing. In a panic, I left the bar, hoping she’d gone back to my place. I was so out of it I even left my purse, with my wallet and all my money, sitting on a table! (Weirdly enough I took out my phone and keys out of it…? If that’s not an illustration of f***ed up I don’t know what is.) In the block between the bar and my apartment, I remember 3 people stopping me to ask me if I was ok. I remember getting into my apartment and collapsing on my couch, finally literally unable to move, though I was still conscious, and staring at my phone on the table hoping my friend would call. I woke up in the morning still on the couch without having received a call. She showed up at my apartment later that morning and told me that she’d freaked out, left the bar, gotten a ride home from a random guy in Wrigleyville (neighborhood in Chicago), and didn’t remember anything else. She went to the doctor later that day, and showed signs of having had unprotected sex, and tested positive for GHB. She flunked out of almost all her classes that semester, and spent months having to be tested and retested for HIV. It was horrific. And while I got lucky, I was also deeply affected by it.



DEGREES OF RAPE (no substances involved):
I’m gonna examine the concept of rape by degrees of extremity of viewpoints.

1) IT’S ALL RAPE.
There are some extremists who believe that every sexual act between a man and woman in our society is rape because of the way women are conditioned by our society. I disagree, because it’s one of those arguments that absolves individuals of personal responsibility based upon the nature of the culture in which they grow up. This is the same logic that says the media is responsible for Columbine. I call bull***t.

2) IF SHE DIDN’T WANT IT IT’S RAPE… REGARDLESS OF COMMUNICATION.
This is a difficult one, and I personally think this is the region that’s hardest for a guy to understand in the situation. From my personal experience, this is where most date rapes happen. In the end, I feel that a woman has to convey in SOME fashion that she doesn’t want to have sex for a man to be guilty of rape.

Real Life Example 1:
I have a friend who was sexually molested as a child by a family member, and until she entered therapy in her 20’s, every time she was in a sexual situation she was completely unable to say no. When she lost her virginity at 15 it was in her boyfriend’s car in her parents’ driveway, and she’d already told him earlier that night that she wanted to wait till she was older to have sex; but when he climbed on top of her she froze up. To me, THAT was rape. She’d previously indicated not wanting to have sex, and even though at that moment she didn’t say no or physically resist, she didn’t say YES or physically respond either. In the years after that, EVERY SINGLE TIME a guy initiated a sexual situation, she went along with it. She describes it as her brain turning off, and just going along with what was happening so as not to upset the other person, because sex had become no big deal to her; it was another activity, like playing cards. When she was 18, this led to her losing the guy she describes as the love of her life because when his friend started kissing her, she went along with it, even though she didn’t want to. In this case, I have to say that that WASN’T rape, because she DID physically respond and to all outward appearances she consented. This guy wasn’t responsible for her psychological issues. Neither was she though. As far as I’m concerned, just like with the roofie example before, the family member that molested her as a child raped her here; he’s the one who took away her ability to consent.

Real Life Example 2:
Once I let a guy basically intimidate and badger me into sex. We went on a date, afterwards we went back to my place to watch a movie, and started messing around; he asked if I had any condoms, I told him that I didn’t have sex on the first date, and we continued messing around. He kept asking, and I kept telling him no, getting more annoyed and less turned on by the moment. I told him we could cuddle till the end of the movie then he had to go home. Over the course of the movie he kept asking and trying to get his hand down my pants; by now he was really, really annoying me, even though what he was doing physically felt good. I didn’t want to escalate the situation and try to kick him out, because our society teaches women that the best way to deal with situations is to charm your way out of them, otherwise you risk a whole range of consequences from violence to verbal abuse to you name it (the creeping tendrils of the media/Columbine theory!). I asked him to leave; he said I didn’t really want him to leave and put his hand down my pants to prove it. In that moment, it seemed logical not to make a bad situation worse; I basically took the approach of “can’t rape the willing” and got a condom and let him have sex with me so that he’d then leave and the situation would be over. I genuinely don’t believe that sex has to be about love, so I told myself it was no big deal, it was just a physical act, and that I may as well try to have a good time out of it. Afterwards, though, I spent about an hour crying in the shower, and started crying again the next day when I told the story to me roommate. She told me it was date rape and I should call the cops. The only other person I’ve ever told the details to (my ex boyfriend… who I ended up getting back together with a few weeks later lol) said the same thing. I said it wasn’t because in the end I consented. I struggled with this a lot, and it’s an example that’s hard for me to look at objectively, but in the end, I have to say that he didn’t rape me… this guy was just a slimy douchebag and generally bad person who I allowed to pressure me into doing something I didn’t want to. I made one of the poorest decisions of my life… but in the end, I learned more about myself and became a stronger person for it.

3) IF A WOMAN DOESN’T PHYSICALLY RESIST IT’S NOT RAPE.
If a woman says no, but doesn’t physically try to stop a man, is it rape? I say yes, unless it’s part of an agreed upon form of roleplaying, etc (which could be said of most anything discussed… the key is it was agreed upon beforehand, and unless you’re an idiot you have a safeword. If you don’t know what a safeword is do some BDSM research. If you don’t know where to start with that kinda thing, send me a private message and I’ll point you in the right direction.) No means no. Period. End of story. I don’t care how far things have gone or what you’re in the middle of, the moment a person says no, if you don’t stop and find out what the boundaries are or until that person changes their mind, it’s rape.

4) IF A WOMAN IS DRESSED PROVOCATIVELY SHE WANTS IT
If you think this way, you fail. I encourage you to kill yourself now.


TO SUM UP:
There is too much, I don’t know how to sum up lol.

OK…respond! Please, lol?

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