Rape, power, & sex

I read an essay today on rape.  I feel conflicted about this. I have had trouble with the “rape is about power” narrative for years. It has always felt like it ignored a lot of possible motivations.

I’m going to go backwards in time. Because I want to today.

When Noah raped me (my final rape) it was… complicated because we had previously negotiated that at some point it was ok for him to ignore my no and have sex with me anyway. He had permission to do that once. He picked a very traumatic day (I had just hung up the phone from calling CPS on my sister and I was highly distressed) and I’m cranky with him over that… but complicated. I had previously consented. So is it rape? Good golly My body processed it as rape whether it was legally or not. I had no desire and I have no desire to prosecute him for it. I gave him permission.

Paul. Was that about power or wanting sex? We were at a sex party. I was happy to have sex with him with a condom. He didn’t want to wear a condom. I was on drugs and not physically able to push him off of me. It was only a few penetrations anyway. He didn’t orgasm in me. I feel pretty confident that was a power trip. A power trip he can’t remember because he was on so many drugs so his friends say it didn’t happen. He’s kinda famous. He puts on childrens shows.

Kevin. This is one I really struggle to define as rape. He licked my cunt when I explicitly told him I was not interested in sex with him. He didn’t use his penis or fingers. I struggle to believe I’m allowed to call this rape. But it was sexual contact I had repeatedly refused. Was that about sex or power? Why was I naked around him if I didn’t want to have sex with him? He was a massage therapist. I hang out with a lot of people who are naked when they aren’t at work. Only one has broken my boundaries so I don’t think the problem is being naked with your friends.

Dan. We were on our second date. I meant to have sex with him. With a condom. He got me so drunk I blacked out then had unprotected sex with me because he knew I was on birth control. The funny thing is: I was way way way way sluttier than him. He was really stupid to want to have unprotected sex with someone who was as promiscuous as me. I think that pushing someone to drink way past their comfort level falls squarely into wanting power.

The guy I picked up on match.com when I was 18. He spiked my drink. I had a shot or two and remember nothing. I found condoms the next day in the trash. My friend (who was hosting the party) said I had been acting really weird and I went to sleep early. Was that about sex or power? I don’t know.

 

You know what? I can’t keep doing this. This is hurting like fuck. Those are the people who raped me when I was an adult. When it feels different. I can’t go back through the childhood rapes and debate them with myself. Not right now.

I can’t. It all feels like my fault. It all feels like if I hadn’t been so stupid. It all feels like what I deserve for being stupid and for wanting to be around people.

If I had just stayed home like a good girl…

But at home I had to face my family. That wasn’t better. If I had spent more time around Tommy he would have eventually been successful in raping me. Maybe it is better that it was outside the family, at least.

I find myself choking on trying to decide if these rapes were about sex or power. My throat is closing.

What about the attempted rapes? God so many of those. I have had attempted rapes be prevented by bystanders. It is part of why I am pro bystander intervention.

If Cameron (Kameron?) hadn’t pulled Justin physically off of me… but they remained good friends afterwards.

My dad raped everyone. Was that about sex or power? He started when he was a kid with his siblings. He continued on. I know about 6 victims and I’m fully convinced there were more.

Why am I doing this to myself this morning?

Because it is better than cutting.

It is actually… grossly comforting to me that I’m less and less likely to be raped as I get older. I’m less appealing. *phew* I may not let my kids leave the house unsupervised at 15. That’ll be jacked up.

Part of the reason I think about these things as much as I do is because if there is a pattern that is my fault, I need to figure out what to change. I want to be to blame. Because that way I can make it stop. If it isn’t my fault then I can’t make it stop. It is just… what happens.

Do you know that at this point I work very hard to ensure I am rarely alone with a man? Just about never. So close to never you could probably say never these days. I think that is fucked up. I think the fact that I look at every man as a potential rapist really sucks. But if you’ve been burned 12 times and you stick your hand right back on that burner it is your own god damn fault.

It isn’t fair of me to paint all men with the same brush.

But it is my own god damn fault when I’m around the wrong men and they rape me.

Don’t you see how there is no winning here?

Given that our society works very hard to ensure that girls can’t pass around knowledge about the rapists…

How are we supposed to protect ourselves?

We aren’t. We are supposed to shut up and accept however people feel like treating us. You don’t believe me? Watch how children are indoctrinated in school. Don’t talk back. Don’t resist authority. Don’t be belligerent. Don’t have your own opinions or thoughts. Don’t argue with the status quo. Don’t stand up when you aren’t supposed to. Don’t sit down when you aren’t supposed to. Don’t go to the bathroom unless you have permission.

There is no room for autonomy there. We are supposed to just do as we are told.

Have you ever noticed that there are differences between how teachers punish boys and girls? Girls are sat on faster and more efficiently but with less violence and hatred. Boys are allowed to break rule after rule after rule after rule until they make someone so angry that they freak out and over react on a stupid unrelated punishment that doesn’t teach boundaries.

Boys and girls are not socialized to the same rules.

I find it interesting how many people in the psychology world believe that talking about old stuff isn’t helpful. You need to just focus on the here and now.

But the thing is, your past helped create who you are. Ignoring it means that you can’t understand why you have some behaviors. I don’t know about you, but it is a lot easier for me to change my behavior if I understand why I adopted it in the first place and why it is no longer serving me.

Why do I think about my own rapes so much? Partially because I deal with rape survivors more than average for non-therapists. I think about the patterns within my own life so I can help other people figure out patterns in their life so that we can all figure out what is actually better for us.

I don’t know how to do that without thinking about history.

I woke up to really brutal diarrhea. I’m pretty sure my body is done with carbs as my main food source. When I feel really bad, my body doesn’t want to process vegetables at all so I eat very little. Protein makes me feel bad. Yesterday my protein and vegetable matter was a combined ~ 1oz. So of course my body flushes. This is what makes folks suggest that I have celiac. I don’t think I do. I think that when I’m feeling really anxious and I can’t eat my body purges like fuck out of panic. Kind of like how birds have to poop every time they lift off to lighten the load.

Tonight we all have our first martial arts classes. Oh this should be entertaining. Wake up at 2:30 in the morning, have difficult physical skill class at 7:30pm. What could go wrong?

I think I need to nap today.

I also need to force myself to eat. I’m on day four of the medication withdrawal. I have to god damn eat. In the previous three days I don’t think I’ve consumed a day of calories. No wonder I feel like shit.

I love pot so much. You have no idea.

I haven’t eaten a day of calories in three days. I went on a challenging walk yesterday. Day before was the test for the martial arts class.

Well, that means a weight drop is about to begin. Sigh.

I don’t do this on purpose.

I don’t think Dark Garden will be very happy if my measurements change substantially in just a month. Oh well.

If I knew of something I could eat without feeling worse I would eat more. But right now everything feels crummy. I did manage some cheese when I woke up this morning. Maybe if I go eat right now instead of waiting for Noah I can get ahead of the curve. My belly only hurts at like a 3 right now. If I wait till “breakfast time” it is going to get worse. That’s how it goes.

It is kind of like that horrible stage of pregnancy where you have to keep something in your stomach at all times or you get sick. That’s my life.

I can’t think of a single thing I actually want to eat. Crap.

Everything sounds disgusting. Even ramen. You know things are bad for me when I can’t bear the thought of ramen.

Ramen is what I eat when I can’t eat anything else. This has been true for over 30 years. But I just can’t today. Shit.

Whoa. Weird. I went to the kitchen and poked around. Do you know what I want? Beans and cheese. I’m pretty sure that has never been true before in my life. I’ve definitely eaten it before, but wanting it is weird. If my body wants it, I’ll eat it. Wow. These taste so freakishly good. What is wrong with me!?

Bodies are so weird.

Ok, the beans are delicious and the cheese is meh. Oh well.

Oh, as far as weight goes: I weighed myself at the chiropractor’s office. 172! I’m thrilled. I didn’t know it was that high. *happy dance* That was before the med break. Let’s see where I am in a week or three, enh?

Why is being heavier better than being lighter? I cry when I hit 152. I try to avoid it.

My clothes don’t fit. I don’t have the physical leverage to do a lot of things I want to do. 20 lbs is a big difference in strength for me. I cannot lift my children when I’m at the bottom of my range. I will fall down. I can at this weight, still.

Yeah my kids are getting too big to be carried. I’m not ready to give it up. This may contribute to my back problems. And my neck problems. And my shoulder problems.

Yes, I know that my physical problems are my own damn fault. As I type and type and type and fuck up my hands.

Noah has been expressing concern. He’s worried about the level of disability I will hit. That’s just cause he has to listen to me cry from pain.

I am so aware it will be my own damn fault. Just like everything else.

I know.

I don’t feel as suicidal as I did yesterday. Well, that’s good at least. My shrink sent me a rec for a med doctor I can probably get into see fairly quickly for more Lorazepam at nights. If I am going to have a snowball’s chance in hell of doing a month I need nighttime help. Don’t know if they will have a stop-gap day time option. I doubt it. Most things I’ve already tried to horrible effect. But meds change all the time. Maybe there is some spiffy new short term anxiety med that doubles as stomach pain medication.

A girl can hope, right?

Ok, I let Noah get a reasonable amount of sleep. Now I can go cuddle him.

5 thoughts on “Rape, power, & sex

  1. Pam

    > Kind of like how birds have to poop every time they lift off to lighten the load.

    Is that true?? That’s fascinating.

    > Wow. These taste so freakishly good. What is wrong with me!?

    Had an out-loud giggle at this.

    <3 you.

  2. Michelle

    I take phenergan/ promethazine for nausea when my stomach acts up really bad, and it knocks me right out. It has nasty side effects (that ive been fortunate enough to avoid so far) though.

    I totally get random food cravings like that where my body is trying to tell me /something/. Yay beans!

    1. Krissy Gibbs Post author

      I have a call in to a psych doctor for back up meds. If I’m going to do another t-break I will need some other kind of support in place. This is not working.

      1. Michelle

        It sounds really, really awful. 🙁

        Do we know anything about the half life of pot? It seems ridiculous to me that anyone would expect a “t-break” to be so long. I know when I take prednisone or a handful of my other meds I have to do a very very slow taper off to slowly acclimate my body to each subsequently lower dose. For me, I need a slower taper if the half life is short.

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