Sex & Vulnerability: How Much Is Too Much And What Are The Risks?

So, this article went up on The Frisky today and my head exploded.

 

We were fucking, he pulled out of me, and I saw his sperm on my pubic hair. ”You just came inside me?” I said, panicked. “Why didn’t you tell me first?” I hadn’t consented to him doing that. And I wouldn’t have consented to it had he announced he was going to come instead of just silently going ahead and doing it.

“Aren’t you on the pill?” he replied by way of response.

“No, I’m not on the pill,” I said.

He looked at me pained. “I just came inside a girl who is not on the pill?”

“Yeah, you did. Why didn’t you ask me if I was on it if you were going to come inside me? I thought you were going to pull out.”

“I just assumed you would be on it.”

Okay. What is this fuckery?

I’ll only briefly touch on the kink aspect to this story. Whether two people are engaging in kink or good o’ missionary vanilla sex, there are always risks involved with going home with someone you don’t know very well. Hell, there’s risks all around at various stages of a relationship. I have a friend who went home with a guy she met on Match. They were having sex and – out of nowhere – he slapped her across the face. It wasn’t as harsh as it sounds. He was obviously testing the waters since they had discussed their mutual interest in kink. Her initial reaction was shock and then anger. The guy quickly apologized and said he thought she had said she had experience with that and liked it. There was not another date.

Since I’ve made my opinions of first date sex quite clear, it should come as no surprise to any of you that I’ve had sex on a first date. I have been lucky that I have never experienced anything like what my friend or Jessica experienced. I could go on about my insight and intuition and all that, but nothing is ever fail-proof. I have been lucky. When I have delved into kinkier activities, it has always been with someone I have been dating – casually or seriously – for a significant amount of time. I mentioned the Too Many Cocks guy, yes? I made it quite clear that I had no intention of fulfilling whatever desire he had with someone I barely knew. There was no second date.

Communication is a key part of sex and intimacy. You can never take it upon yourself to believe that you know exactly what a person’s boundaries are or that you and they are on the same page. You need to ask and you need to listen and you need to respect said boundaries. That applies to hook ups on the first date or ones that happen after dating several months. I’ve frequently questioned Jessica’s actual experience level with BDSM and kink. To me, it sounds like she was with someone who had more experience than she did. You can never assume that you and your partner have even close to similar sexual histories. These things need to be talked about before you try something new.

And at some point in the evening as the pain he was inflicting on me hurt worse and worse, I used his safeword: “Pineapple!” He stopped spanking me, like he should have. We did other things. But later on that night, he started smacking my butt again. I felt so sensitive there that I wasn’t enjoying it — it wasn’t “good pain.” Come to find out the next day when I looked in a mirror, I had a constellation of small bruises all over my ass: three on one butt check and one on another. Because of the position he had been holding me in, this man most certainly saw those bruises. My safewording should have been the indicator to ease up the

Jessica is demonizing this guy, and after reading the piece a few times, I’m not sure why. Initially I read this and felt the guy was disregarding her stated boundaries. Then I read it again. And again. When she asked him to stop, he stopped. They engaged in a brief exchange about their individual definitions and uses for a safeword, and that’s somehow construed as violating her. That was a conversation they should have had before they even took their clothes off. Then she stayed overnight because..wait for it…she wanted to have sex with him? What the whating what?  It was written as though the guy was trying to somehow coerce her, and I’m not sure that’s what actually happened.

For the people who will say things like, “This is why you don’t have sex on a first date!!” I’ll just say this: I think it’s precious that you think that renting space on the moral high ground means anything to anyone other than you.

Now for the other issue concerning birth control. I was really livid as I read the exchange Jessica had with this guy after he ejaculated inside of her. I do not agree – at all – that it’s the man’s job to ask if a woman is on The Pill. I think both people are supposed to take a breath and exchange some vital information such as testing history, relationship status, who has condoms and what other birth control methods are being used. While the guy was an ass – and an obvious idiot – I don’t think it’s fair to paint him as The Bad Guy in this particular part of the situation. I’m actually shocked that an adult male would make any assumptions about birth control given the possible consequences. Guys, allow me to clear something up: regardless of whether a woman says she can’t get pregnant or it’s a safe time or whatever, wrap it up. While she may genuinely believe these things, nothing is 100%. Don’t use any opportunity to go without a condom. And definitely don’t blame the woman should something actually happen. You were there, too. Not every woman is out to trap you so they can get a piece of your $150K a year salary.

Then, of course, there’s the STD factor, which I know a lot of people are going to address, so I won’t bother.

Finally, there’s the question of why she ever revealed any of this at all. The issues of boundaries once again rears its head. No, she’s not brave or raw or honest. That’s something else women need to stop. Writing this was foolish. Now that I’m getting work writing for other sites, I realize how popular and in demand the personal essay/narrative type pieces are. You can write such stories and self-edit and still offer a take away value without making yourself so vulnerable.  I wish we’d stop encouraging women to reveal so much before they’re truly emotionally mature enough to handle the possible fall out.

The biggest issue for me concerning this post – and frankly most posts that women bloggers write about their love and sex lives – is the total lack of accountability in the outcome. Yes, a lot of them acknowledge that they made mistakes. But then, just as quickly, they remind the reader of how awful the guy is. You know. Just in case they forgot. It’s almost always 100% exclusively the guy’s fault in every aspect. If a woman has a rocky dating history or struggles to keep a guy interested, it’s never because she makes bad choices. It’s because the men “tripped her up.” While we have all, at one time or another, willfully chosen to ignore red flags, there’s only so many times you can do that before your judgment comes in to question. One commonality that I notice in all of these articles is the air of experience these women try to convey, yet at the same time by sharing so much they actually reveal how inexperienced they really are.

I’m so tired of this passive role so many women are willing to take when it comes to their love lives. Everything appears to happen to them, implying that they don’t have any control or say in how things work out. They’re victims of men, yet they’re still empowered and self-sufficient and refuse to settle and have standards, dammit.

Sorry, but you ladies simply can’t keep trying to have it both ways, if for no other reason than you’re inevitably going to lose out on the very thing you claim to want. If everybody keeps passing you by and getting closer and closer to their goal while you sit there struggling, it’s not fate or destiny. It’s you.

 

 

SHAMELESS PLUG: Check out an essay I wrote for The Gloss. I’m actually quite proud of, as it discusses how my opinions of being single vs. being married have evolved over the past year. Like it, Tweet it & comment..please?

Can You Be Single And Still “Be Alive?”

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39 Responses to “Sex & Vulnerability: How Much Is Too Much And What Are The Risks?”

  1. Speedy Says:

    Did that girl not get any sex ed classes?
    Guess what, withdrawal doesn’t work anyway.

    Also not keen on the consent talk here.

    She has just told the world this guy is a rapist, on a blog.
    This is what the Wikileaks guy is going to be charged with in Sweden.

    She needs to hand over the rapist to the police, or maybe he needs to hand himself in actually.

    Unless its possible men aren’t, you know, machines and stuff. Still, rape is rape.

    Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 1 Thumb down 13

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    • Nicole Says:

      This was NOT a case of rape. When she asked him to stop and used the agreed upon safe word he stopped both times.

      I consider this an example of irresponsible journalism. It’s a shame that more and more websites like The Frisky and XOJane seem intent on exploiting the mental and emotional instability of other women.

      Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 21 Thumb down 1

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    • Brad Says:

      “This is what the Wikileaks guy is going to be charged with in Sweden.”

      This is nothing like Julian Assange. In his multiple rape charges, he “is accused of using his body weight to hold her down in a sexual manner.”

      “The second charge alleged Assange “sexually molested” Miss A by having sex with her without a condom when it was her “express wish” one should be used.”

      “The fourth charge accused Assange of having sex with a second woman, Miss W, on August 17 without a condom while she was asleep at her Stockholm home.”

      I skipped the third charge because there is almost universal agreement that there is nothing to it.

      All quotes come from here:
      http://www.swedishwire.com/politics/7570-the-charges-against-julian-assange

      You are correct, “rape is rape”, and this (frisky article) is not rape. No means no, but at some point the person has to *say* no, not just regret a miscommunication after the fact. Notice the use of the phrase ‘express wish’ in the Assange charges?

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 0

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      • Speedy Says:

        I don’t think that article is accurate. It talks about nonexistent charges for one thing, he hasn’t been charged with anything.

        And no, consent doesn’t work like that cowboy, so lets be careful huh.
        Nobody has to say no, they just have to have not said yes. Miscommunication after the fact is no excuse.

        My point is really that I think you can consent to acts, but consenting to acts and not consenting to consequences is a bit of an odd idea. What you should really notice is that Jessica is using the word ‘consent’ rhetorically because no reader of the Frisky is ever going to challenge a woman on something she didn’t consent to. Never mind they were ‘fucking’ and sometimes, as an entire medical industry devoted to premature ejaculation demonstrates, not everything is fully on one’s control at that point.

        Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

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        • Speedy Says:

          More to the wider point, the thing about BDSM is again you can consent to it but again, you’ve got to accept sometimes it might not work out exactly as you wanted, the consequences might not be ideal. That isn’t a license for someone to abuse your consent but things happen, some things are exciting as fantasies but less pleasant than you were hoping real life. If you don’t have a sensible and to some extent forgiving mindset towards the other person if they make a genuine enough mistake you aren’t really entering in the spirit of it. Being ‘submissive’ isn’t the same as ‘no responsibility for anything, you just get to criticise’ isn’t how it works. And going ape shit and shouting about consent in public is pretty scary behaviour.

          I there was such a thing I’d put out an APB to all other men to avoid her at all costs.

          Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

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  2. Dark Sarcasm Says:

    We still ‘pulling out’

    I thought we stopped doing that as teenagers!

    Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 9 Thumb down 6

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    • hammersandnails Says:

      Are these thumbs down actually people defending the pull out “method” of parenthood and STD’s?

      Seriously people? You actually do this? It’s shockingly reckless.

      Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 7 Thumb down 4

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  3. Greg Figueroa Says:

    Moxie,

    I wonder how much is it inexperience or rather this need to have fodder for her articles. She seems to always say she knows better at the end in the disingenious accountability paragraph. I would assume she has done a ton of research and given her prior experience that she would know how important communication is in BDSM. This wasn’t her first time. She has this feminist sexually empowered POV, but yet picks and chooses when to use it in real life and blames the other person for not having her feminist POV.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

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  4. M Says:

    I’m so tired of this passive role so many women are willing to take when it comes to their love lives. Everything appears to happen to them, implying that they don’t have any control or say in how things work out. They’re victims of men, yet they’re still empowered and self-sufficient and refuse to settle and have standards, dammit.

    Awesome. Well said, good point.

    Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 11 Thumb down 1

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  5. VJ Says:

    And of course Rule 34 kink too. And to the next question, Yes of course there is. Volumes & universes of it. VJ

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

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  6. LaMotta Says:

    I think it’s obvious (in the pull-out scenario) that what both of them wanted was to go bareback and were just making a show of being shocked at the inevitable results.

    But yeah, generally, the poor damsel complex is tired and not at all helpful.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 9 Thumb down 0

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  7. VJ Says:

    Yep, It’s a pretty common kinky script. If you want no love w/o the glove, you state that up front. Not quite simple as it sounds (nothing ever is) but the appropriate script is less often missed. VJ

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

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  8. mindstar Says:

    She claimed to have 12+ years of kink experience yet she didn’t engage in much more consent discussion with a stranger than providing a safeword???? The mental gyrations she does in the article are hilarious. At the end of the day it sounds like a case of buyer’s remorse because her “feelings” were hurt. The guy doesn’t win any genius points for going bareback with a stranger either but he is certainly not a rapist. Unfortunately he is also not a mind reader which is what one apparently has to be to have sex, kinky or otherwise, with this woman. And Moxie as M said great point wrt the passive role all too many women play in their own lives. There are far too many women out there who are really just playing “Dress-up” like they did when they were children. They’re running round in makeup and heels in Mommy’s dress and acting like they’re adults but emotionally they’re still children. Sad.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 0

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    • fuzzilla Says:

      >She claimed to have 12+ years of kink experience<

      Wow, really? (I genuinely didn't know, couldn't make it through the whole thing). I can see why Moxie doubted this chick was really all that experienced. I suppose they could be 12+ years of *bad* experiences, but if one doesn't learn from *that much* experience, if true….eh….wow.

      Yes, completely agree that, in general, lots of women focus on what a "bad guy" the man is to dodge responsibility. Vice versa goes for a lot of men, of course, although no, men generally don't write confessional articles that wallow in that bad habit.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

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  9. hammersandnails Says:

    1. is she really clueless enough to think that bruises happen instantaneously? For the sort of light bruising we are talking about here it would probably take well over an hour for the bruising to be visible. Immediately asking any girl who’s just walked into a table if she bruised herself would certainly reveal that she knows that bruises don’t appear right away. She knows better. She’s just trying anything to rationalize her irrational feelings that this guy has wronged her.

    2. Since when is bruising so clearly “over the line”? She tries to use it as some sort of damning indictment that this man went “too far” but bruises happen. I’ve gotten a plenty of bruises, I’ve given a lot more all in the name of good clean fun that I wouldn’t say even comes close to true bd sm with a safeword territory. You can still see years old scratching scars on my back. I knew what game I was playing. If a woman mentioned bd sm to me I would certainly assume that she is the kind of girl looking for a lot wilder ride than the sort that would balk at always covered while clothed minor bruising (it’s not trivial to do any more than minor bruising on a well padded spot like a posterior with just an open hand)

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

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    • fuzzilla Says:

      There’s no One True Way to be kinky, and if she’s not into bruising, that’s certainly her right. Most/many people who are kinky wear bruises like badges of honor, from what I’ve observed.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

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      • hammersandnails Says:

        I’m not saying that asking not to be bruised means you are not kinky, I’m saying that if you say you are into spanking, you have to accept that bruises are a not uncommon outcome. That’s like sitting in the front row of sea world and then pitching a fit when you get splashed.

        If a girl asked me to spank her hard, but definitely not leave any bruises, I’d tell her I can’t help her.

        Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

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  10. LostSailor Says:

    The biggest issue for me concerning this post – and frankly most posts that women bloggers write about their love and sex lives – is the total lack of accountability in the outcome.

    Completely agree with Moxie on this, maybe more so .

    To recap: She doesn’t communicate her wants and limits sufficiently and expects him to already know what they are. When he doesn’t do that to her satisfaction and throws up all sorts of red flags, instead of leaving, she stays because she wants to be fucked. She allows him to remove the condom because she really wants to be fucked. And she’s gobsmacked when he comes inside her.

    ”You just came inside me?” I said, panicked. “Why didn’t you tell me first?” I hadn’t consented to him doing that. And I wouldn’t have consented to it had he announced he was going to come instead of just silently going ahead and doing it….I thought you were going to pull out.”

    Uh, well, yeah, she kinda did consent to it when she okayed the bareback ride. If she was concerned about the possibility of his ejaculating inside her, she should have spoken up. The subsequent complaining about his “violation” of her is clearly saying that her unvoiced assumptions were completely legit, but his unvoiced assumptions bordered on criminal.

    Of course, I also blamed myself for taking risks. I shouldn’t have gone home with a man on a first date. I should have gone home after the spanking incident. I shouldn’t have had sex without a condom. I shouldn’t have done D/s play with someone I didn’t know. I should have communicated better. I know better than all of that! This whole thing could have been avoided if … I’ve written and read enough about rape culture, victim blaming, and slut shaming to know that these are completely normal feelings to have, but it doesn’t mean any of them are true.

    So she “blames” herself, but not really, because none of those “I shouldn’t haves” are true. Incorrect. Nearly all of them are true.

    And this is the problem I have with the whole “Rape Culture” meme that’s all the rage these days. I do not condone rape at all. But neither can I agree with the feminist assertion that in any and all cases of rape women bear no responsibility. It’s just another feminist assertion of rights without responsibility.

    There is a doctrine in law of “contributory negligence.” If I leave my front door unlocked with a sign reading “On Vacation for 2 Weeks: Door Open” should I be shocked when I return and find all my stuff gone? But the reasoning behind all the “slut walks” a while back is that women should be able to be anywhere, dressed as provocatively as they please, and in whatever state of intoxication and not fear rape. And if rape happens, they bear no responsibility, since that would be “victim blaming.”

    It’s a nice sentiment. I should be able to leave my Lamborghini running with the door open in Bed-Stuy or the South Bronx and return an hour later and find it still there and unmolested. I should be able to stumble drunk through those areas late at night with fistfuls of cash hanging out of my pockets and not fear mugging. Unfortunately, we do not live in such a fantasy world. If I did either of those two things and the car was stolen and I was beaten and robbed, would anyone have a problem saying that it was partly or even mostly my fault for leaving the car running or being drunk in a bad neighborhood? I think we all know the answer to that…

    I am in no way letting rapists off the hook: they are responsible for their own actions and crimes and deserve punishment if convicted. But even strong, independent women need to take some responsibility for their own actions, and inaction…

    Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 18 Thumb down 5

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  11. Marie Says:

    On some points here I agree with you. On others I strongly disagree. A woman dressing provocatively should never indicate that she is a target for sexual abuse. No means no. That’s it. Even if a woman goes home with a man intending to have sex, then changes her mind and says no – he should NOT have the right to say ‘well, she asked for it’. When she (or in some cases he) says no, that should be the end. The circumstances you described above are no where near similar to a rape, nor are they as severe. Nor were you standing in front of your door saying “NO!”. I pray to God I never meet you at a bar when I happen to be in a slinky outfit and stilettos.

    As for this particular article, I agree. Anything she said no to, he stopped doing. She could have left, he didn’t force himself upon her. She isn’t taking responsibility for her choices. Instead, it seems to me that she is blaming him because she is unhappy with what she let him do, without contest. It reads as if he raped her, which just doesn’t seem to be the case. I do think people need to start taking responsibility for their own poor choices and then work to fix themselves so they don’t continue to happen in the future.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 3

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    • hammersandnails Says:

      I always wonder if deep down inside feminist who repeat “no means no” actually have any idea how often women who are dying to say yes, say no a few times first. Seriously.

      At great personal cost, this is what women have taught me with endless repetition and consistency when it comes to girls that have come to your bedroom of their own free will and can leave it just as easily:
      Yes = she is probably crazy and socially weird. The sex is probably going to be awesome and I’m probably still going to regret it somehow.
      no+grope, no+kiss, no+hand in my pants, yes = about average.
      no+hug, no+kiss,no+dry hump, no+her pants off but definitely not the panties, not on the first date! how about tomorrow morning? just the tip? do it. = not at all unusual even though it’s obviously batshit insane.

      “no” + stop active physical affection and/or leave = no.

      I know someone is going to be outraged, and hopefully you can come up with something a bit more cogent than calling me a pig, because we all know I’m not making this stuff up.

      Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 10 Thumb down 0

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      • Marie Says:

        Ha! That might be the first time I’ve ever been called a feminist.

        Anyways, that is not what I am talking about. The most offensive quote from LostSailor was:

        “But the reasoning behind all the “slut walks” a while back is that women should be able to be anywhere, dressed as provocatively as they please, and in whatever state of intoxication and not fear rape. And if rape happens, they bear no responsibility, since that would be “victim blaming.””

        There is no speak of the woman groping the man here. There is no kissing. She didn’t go home with the man. There’s a woman in a provocative dress who is not a victim if a man rapes her because of the clothes she chooses to wear. If a man ever said this to me at a bar, I’d likely take off that stiletto I was wearing, hit him in the dick with it, then tell the bouncer he’s a threat to the women at the club.

        What you’re describing is different. Yes, if a woman goes home with a man, says no, then continues to be physical? Not the same situation by a long shot. I’m talking about when someone genuinely changes their mind and wants to leave but isn’t allowed.

        Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 1

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        • LostSailor Says:

          There’s a woman in a provocative dress who is not a victim if a man rapes her because of the clothes she chooses to wear.

          That’s not what I said. You might be a feminist if you can only hear it that way. (see below.)

          If a man ever said this to me at a bar, I’d likely take off that stiletto I was wearing, hit him in the dick with it,

          And in that specific event, you would be responsible for the sexual assault, and he would be responsible for the poor decision to say that to a volatile and violent woman. See how that works?

          What you’re describing is different. Yes, if a woman goes home with a man, says no, then continues to be physical? Not the same situation by a long shot.

          To you, perhaps, but not to feminists and, increasing, law enforcement. If a woman says “no” at any stage of the proceedings, even if she was still being physical with him, by the definition of anti-rape activists and often the courts, that is rape. Period. That’s the message of “rape culture”. Of course that “no” only becomes relevant if she feels after the fact that it’s relevant.

          Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 2

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        • hammersandnails Says:

          You are talking about the fringe cases because they are only the ones that are not debatable. Women are very rarely grabbed off the sidewalk and dragged into an alley. I agree that it’s awful beyond words and does happen, but the frequency pales in comparison to the cases that are a lot more ambiguous.

          If I go to a grimey dark gay dance club and take my shirt off and start dancing around, and like it or not, guys are going to touch me, and I’m not going to be surprised or outraged, because wtf did I expect to happen? Any women who expects to have a different experience with no shirt in a roomful of straight guys seems nuts to me.

          Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 1

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    • LostSailor Says:

      Marie, you’re putting words in my mouth and misrepresenting me. I completely agree that no means no, that a woman can change her mind on consent even in the midst of the act. And it is incumbent on a man (or woman) to respect that and to stop. I also agree that provocative clothing or intoxication are never excuses that exonerate a rapist.

      The scenarios I use are exactly analogous to the issue (the severity of the crime is irrelevant): we all have a responsibility to safeguard ourselves and our things. The “rape culture” meme is pernicious in two ways. First is communicates that rape is rampant as well as the radical feminist idea that all men are rapists (or potential rapists just waiting for their chance). That’s simply not true; the incidence of rape has fallen dramatically over the last 20 years. But the second is more important: by declaiming, as the “slut walks” do, that women have zero responsibility in cases of rape leads to women making poor decisions based on what they “should” be able to do in a perfect society and putting themselves in situations where rape or assault may be more likely.

      In the linked article, Jessica relied on this type of thinking, agreeing to go rawdog without thinking of the consequences, because it’s not her responsibility, it’s his. When he pops off in her, she’s shocked and angry that he did: it’s his fault for not knowing she wasn’t using contraception. Even her reactions are his fault. This type of thinking led her to make bad decisions because the culture has now taught her that any consequences are not her responsibility.

      I understand that women don’t like this line of reasoning because some assholes will use it as justification, like you said “she was asking for it.” No, she wasn’t. And the rape is not her responsibility or fault. But to say she has no responsibility for making poor decisions such that she placed herself in the wrong place at the wrong time and had a bad outcome is her responsibility. Perhaps that “shouldn’t” be true, but in the real world, it is.

      Oh, and you should want to meet me in a bar in a slinky outfit and stilettos. I’m quite charming. I’ll even buy you a drink, though it’s entirely your responsibility if you drink it…

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 9 Thumb down 0

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      • Marie Says:

        I actually fully agree with you on the content that is associated with the article Jessica wrote. I said that in my original response. She went to his place, she not only gave consent, but asked him to take the condom off and she let him push her boundaries. When she asked him to stop, he did. She never said no. She felt dirty but he didn’t do anything that she didn’t consent to. She should be taking responsibility for her actions. He can’t read her mind. If she wanted to leave and genuinely didn’t want to be there, she could have.

        It’s the rest that I very strongly disagree with. If a woman gets attacked because she is wearing provocative clothing, she shouldn’t have to feel guilty about that because she wore something that someone else was turned on by.

        Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

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        • D. Says:

          I don’t think anyone’s saying she should feel guilty. But that doesn’t absolve her — or anyone else — of their own responsibility to protect themselves.

          Part of the problem is that people conflate blame with responsibility. The two are not the same thing.

          It’s the rapist’s fault that she was raped, not hers. But they both bear responsibility for their choices. She SHOULD be able to feel safe walking around totally naked if she wanted to. Unfortunately, the world doesn’t work like that.

          If I whip out my wallet in a crime-ridden part of town and count my cash right there in the street, I SHOULD be safe. And if someone sticks a gun in my face and demands I hand over the cash, it’s their fault, not mine. But I do bear responsibility for the sequence of events that (A) placed me in the crime-ridden part of town, and then (B) had me not particularly concerned with whipping out a bunch of cash. My judgment in such a scenario is simply bad. It’s my responsibility to protect myself, and no one else’s. Should I feel ashamed? Yes, if we’re talking about me being ashamed of my bad judgment. Should I feel like it’s my fault? No, because I’m not the one who broke the law and assaulted someone.

          The problem with the “slut shaming” stuff is when people use it incorrectly — to disclaim responsibility for their own judgment. None of it excuses the criminal act (even if it can’t be proven that a criminal act occurred in a court of law), but it’s not as if one is absolved of all responsibility merely by being on the wrong end of a crime or lousy scenario.

          And certainly in Jessica’s case, it took two to tango.

          Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 1

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        • LostSailor Says:

          Last one.

          If a woman gets attacked because she is wearing provocative clothing, she shouldn’t have to feel guilty about that because she wore something that someone else was turned on by.

          As hammerandnails noted, you are pointing to only the fringe cases, and in this instance a phantom one. Women are almost never raped or assaults solely because of what they are wearing. The opportunity for rape and assault is situational. Since most rapes and assaults by far are perpetrated by someone known (usually well-known or an intimate partner) to the victim, clothing choice usually doesn’t factor in at all. In the case of stranger rapes/assaults (about 22%), the situational conditions are primarily isolation and secondarily other things like intoxication. In those instances, many times a woman’s poor choices based on what she’s been told/conditioned to think she “should” be able to do put her in the situation where a rapist could act. That’s the only responsibility I’m talking about.

          In 2006, Jennifer Moore, 18, came into NYC from the suburbs with a friend to go under-age drinking and clubbing. Late at night and quite drunk, they discovered they’d parked in a tow-away zone with predictable results. The impound lot on the West Side Highway wouldn’t release the car. Moore’s friend collapsed from too much alcohol and while waiting for an ambulance, Moore wandered off up the West Side Highway. She was later found raped and murdered in New Jersey.

          There were several articles and other commentators (most of whom I virulently otherwise disagree) who noted that it probably wasn’t the best of ideas for a plastered 18-year old wearing a skimpy halter and short mini-skirt to be wandering around the fairly desolate WSH in the wee hours of the morning. There was the predictable firestorm of protest saying that Moore couldn’t be blamed for any of that, because that was no different than blaming her for her own rape and murder. This seems to be what you’re saying, too. That’s also the message behind the “slut walks.”

          My point is that this message encourages that very behavior. The message is that it is (should be) fine for a young woman in a halter and short skirt (sorry, but that outfit is specifically designed to be “noticed”) to wander around a deserted area of Manhattan in an alcoholic haze at 5am. If anything happens, it’s not her fault.

          I suppose that a fine message for feminists, but would you advise that for your daughter…?

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          • LostSailor Says:

            I should add that the message is pernicious because it leads to the widespread idea of non-responsibility that fuels the actions and reactions of both Jennifer Moore and Jessica Wakeman alike.

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          • India Says:

            I am certainly one for advising young women to practice street smarts and safety precautions.
            If I had a son, I would make sure that he understands “a halter top and a miniskirt” is not an invitation for assault and murder.

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            • LostSailor Says:

              “a halter top and a miniskirt” is not an invitation for assault and murder.

              No one ever said it was. And the whole “what she was wearing” thing is a red herring. It draws attention away from being critical of the much more important “what she was doing” and the poor decisions that led to it…

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              • India Says:

                “What she was doing.”

                Being intoxicated is not an invitation for assault and murder.
                Being alone is not an invitation for assault and murder.
                Being a 18 year old feme is not an invitation for assault and murder.

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                • D. Says:

                  No, and no one suggested those were, either.

                  However, you can’t deny there’s an element of cause-and-effect at work in such a situation. Take away a few critical factors, and you don’t have a tragedy on your hands.

                  – If she wasn’t drunk, she might’ve said “Maybe this is a bad idea and we should go somewhere else.”

                  – If she wasn’t alone, maybe the people who attacked her would’ve thought twice and moved on.

                  – If she wasn’t in a dangerous or at least sketchy part of town, maybe she’d have been at much less risk of being attacked at all. (As in, if you aren’t where the criminals tend to be, you’re a lot less likely to be the victim of a crime.)

                  If you put yourself in a scenario that increases the risk of harm to you, you have played a part in determining what happens to you if harm befalls you. You may not be inviting it, and it may not be your fault, but that doesn’t mean your decisions had nothing to do with the eventual outcome.

                  The one time when I got held up at gunpoint, I wasn’t “asking” for it, and nothing about the fact that I was a yuppie wandering the city in the middle of summer, alone, a little buzzed, at 2am was an invitation for the guy to stick a gun in my face and take my wallet.

                  But my choices DID play a part in that happening. I chose to be out that late. I chose to walk home alone instead of hopping a cab. I chose to stroll along casually, rather than walking with a purpose. Was it my fault? Am I to blame? Of course not. The guy with the gun was. But had I made better or just different decisions, I might not have been the victim of a crime. Nor would I consider it “mugging victim shaming” if someone said “Haven’t you ever heard the phrase ‘nothing good happens after 2am’?” It might be an insensitive comment, but they’d still have a point, however poorly that point might be made.

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                • hammersandnails Says:

                  If you are a scumbag rapist, all of the above are invitations. You can’t protest that away. You are doing a disservice to all the young girls out there who are putting themselves unnecessarily at risk because of this ridiculous idea that you should be able to do whatever you want and take no blame for the repercussions.

                  Do you lock your doors? You should be able to leave them unlocked, shouldn’t you?

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  12. DrivingMeNutes Says:

    Leave it women to make even supposedly “kinky” sex sound tedious and boring. None of it sounds remotely interesting to me. I don’t understand the need for all this crap just to have good sex. In fact, I don’t believe it’s genuine.

    When I read her artucles, all I hear is “I’m different because I’m kinky…blah blah blah … I’m so different….. blah blah. Did I mention kinky.. blah blah.” That appears to be the whole point of her articles. Who cares really how someone uses or abuses a safeword.

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    • Andthatswhyyouresingle Says:

      What I’m getting is that neither of them had any actual D/s experience. She’s using lingo to set a tone and to frame the story.

      I think this was nothing more than a guy who needed to get laid badly and picked her because she mentions kink and spanking in her profile.

      I can’t imagine any guy reading this and thinking that she sounds remotely enjoyable, sexually or otherwise.

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  13. D'Alias Says:

    That article gave me a royal headache. It’s so stupid. She should seek out a professional to help her learn to asses responsibility & how to communicate with others.How is he supposed to know how she feels of she didn’t tell him?

    This isn’t a situation created b/c they had sex on the first date. Or b/c they were engaging in bdsm play. It’s her failure to communicate her expectations.

    Accusing a man of Rape is very serious. Claiming you didn’t consent to something – especially when u let it happen w/o stopping them – is basically a rape allegation.

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