In this day and age, we need to relearn what consent is. In the Netflix show 13 Reasons Why, one of the main characters (Bryce) said: "I could tell she wanted it and she didn't exactly say no." That's such a young guy way of thinking, and some men never grow out of that. They can't wrap their minds around why women don't want sex with them all the time. Men also don't understand why women don't want sex to be the focus of a relationship. You will not die if you don't get sex when you want it. Not every girl is going to want you... shocker, I know. Now I know not all men think the way I just described. There are decent men out there. It's not just men that need to learn about consent either, we all do.
It happened to me about 4 years ago. I just got out of my first relationship and I went back on a popular dating site (I won't name it because it may not want to be associated with this). About a week later I started to talk to a guy who lived about 30 or 45 minutes away. This new guy and I met a few days later. It went well but at the end of the night he touched me and I didn't stop him. I think that's where the ball started to roll in his head about what he would do next to me. So we saw each other the next day at a park near my house. At dark we sat in my car talking. One of the last things he did was touch me down there; I wanted it so that wasn't the assault. This is going to sound weird, but I think when I consented he thought my consent overrode the times I would say no. At this point it all seemed normal. I felt like I found a good guy.
"If tomorrow, women woke up and decided they really liked their bodies, just think how many industries would go out of business."—Gail Dines
For most couples, pregnancy is a wonderful time when they become closer to the prospect of becoming parents and embarking on this amazing journey.
The word “No” doesn’t mean “convince me!" I just wish I lived by that saying. Today, I want to call 911 and tell them how my boyfriend has been using me as a slave instead of a girlfriend for three years. He beats me. He calls me ugly every time I put on makeup to hide the scars and bruises he leaves me with. He calls me a hoe even though I’m the one catching him, exterminating the term “fidelity” from his vocabulary. After he beats me, he always says, “I’m sorry, you know I love you,” but those words have lost meaning for the both of us. If he loves me, then what was the point of using me as a punching bag? Is a black eye supposed to resemble his love for my eyes? Is my broken nose supposed to say he thinks I’m beautiful? Is my beaten up face supposed to let people believe that he’s abusing me out of love? Abusing me didn’t make me love him more, it made me stop. He made me afraid of him and ashamed of myself.
You’ve finally managed to get the courage and support to leave your abusive partner. You think you can breathe again and start rebuilding your life. Think again. Immediately post separation is a very dangerous time for abused women. Your ex is now furious; you have escaped his control and left without his permission. He is desperate to get his control back. You belong to him and you have dared to think otherwise!
If you (or someone you know) are a survivor of or are experiencing domestic violence whether it be physical, mental, emotional, sexual, some, or all then you know how hard it was/is to actually leave. Everyone has their own reasoning—well excuses (I’m no exception, you’re about to read my excuses).
This story, and others like it, for that matter, is a hard one for me to tell. Namely because it involves divulging personal feelings surrounding people who've left a few scars emotionally, as I am the type of woman who has never wanted to give these types of people the time of day. However, in my healing process, I have found it necessary to call attention to these things in an effort to help women find (and keep) their own voice.
My first week of college, I was raped. For the longest time, I could not bring myself to say that I was raped. I started off by denying that it had ever happened to me. Yet when I finally did begin to accept that it had happened, I could only call it sexual assault. I denied myself the reality of what had happened in order to protect myself, but it only hurt me more.