Rape Myths

TARcardmoon

Rape myths exist for many different purposes. They exist in order to make people feel safe and maintain a view of the world that is orderly and comfortable. For instance, if one believes that rape only happens to women do not resist “enough”, it is easy for the believer to feel safe because she certainly would resist “enough.” This type of myth provides a false sense of security for many people. Other myths exist to maintain the present inequality between men and women. As an illustration, the myth that women who wear revealing clothing are raped allows people to believe that wearing revealing clothing provokes men to rape; therefore, women should dress in order to prevent such provocation, which limits women and their choices. Rape myths, unfortunately, are prevalent in our society and they are untrue. Anyone can be raped and no one is free from sexual violence.

Rape is a crime of sex.
Rape is a crime of power disguised as sex.

Only women are raped.
Men are raped, women are raped and small children are raped. This is unfortunate but true.

Women secretly want to be raped

It is not uncommon for women to have rape fantasies. However, I believe that this is a result of women feeling that expressing their sexuality openly is bad, mainly due to societal beliefs. Some people may fantasize about rape in order to express their sexual desires, while feeling as though they are not “bad.” But no one likes to be overpowered, with their choices taken away. Ever.

Only sexy looking women are raped.
This myth exists because people view rape as a sexually motivated crime. Again, it is not. Rape is a crime of power, perpetrated by people who find gratification in overpowering. It doesn’t matter how sexy or attractive the victim is perceived as being.

Women who dress provocatively deserve to be raped.
The words “dress provocatively” can be replaced with any number of different words, like “are intoxicated,” “flirt with men,” or “hitch hike.” The truth is that no one deserves to be raped, no matter what they were doing. It is not up to someone to avoid being raped. It is the obligation of people to decide not to rape.

Normal men don’t rape. I would be able to tell if someone was a rapist just by talking to him.

Most rapists seem normal to their friends, families and co-workers. They just hold people in low regard and do not understand or do not care about the consequences of their actions.

Women falsely accuse men of rape all the time.
Instances of false accusations are no higher for rape than any other crime.

If a woman is raped, she might as well sit back and enjoy it.
This myth allows men to feel that rape is permissible, but it is patently false. Survivors of sexual assault usually find that damage has been done to their view of the world and their views of themselves as a result of the way someone has taken control of their bodies. Again, no one likes to left without choices, especially when bodily integrity is violated.

If rape is not physically resisted, it is not rape.
Humans, and all animals have three responses to danger. We either fight, freeze, or flee. Many people fearing for their lives or bodily integrity freeze. There is no choice in that reaction. It’s just what happens.

Some people are just biologically driven to rape.
People do not rape because they want sexual gratification. They rape to overpower. I’m going to be frank here. Masturbation provides sexual release and does not turn a person into a criminal. A lot of people choose that option, rather than becoming criminals.

Originally posted as part of The Facts About Sexual Assault at Surviving to Thriving.
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~ by After Silence on September 26, 2009.

3 Responses to “Rape Myths”

  1. […] Rape Myths « After Silence myvoiceaftersilence.wordpress.com/2009/09/26/rape-myths – view page – cached Rape myths exist for many different purposes. They exist in order to make people feel safe and maintain a view of the world that is orderly and comfortable. For instance, if one believes that rape… (Read more)Rape myths exist for many different purposes. They exist in order to make people feel safe and maintain a view of the world that is orderly and comfortable. For instance, if one believes that rape only happens to women do not resist “enough”, it is easy for the believer to feel safe because she certainly would resist “enough.” This type of myth provides a false sense of security for many people. Other myths exist to maintain the present inequality between men and women. As an illustration, the myth that women who wear revealing clothing are raped allows people to believe that wearing revealing clothing provokes men to rape; therefore, women should dress in order to prevent such provocation, which limits women and their choices. (Read less) — From the page […]

  2. Trigger Warning – http://trinityofhedon.blogspot.com/2009/09/sharing-my-survival.html <— My own story.

  3. I dont know If I said it already but …I’m so glad I found this site…Keep up the good work I read a lot of blogs on a daily basis and for the most part, people lack substance but, I just wanted to make a quick comment to say GREAT blog. Thanks, 🙂

    …..Frank Scurley

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