Tuesday, 23 January 2018

#MeToo and Aziz Ansari | My Story

Not too long ago, an article in
about a young woman's encounter with world-famous actor Aziz Ansari
plastered the headlines all over the world.

When I read it, I felt physically sick.
Because the same thing happened to me.
Not with a world-famous actor.
But the scene was the same.
And reading the article brought it all back, in gut-wrenching vivid colours.

I had never told anyone about what happened to me.
Until after I read that article.
I had shoved it way back in a dark corner in my mind, hoping it would never bother me again.
What I didn't know, was that it did.
It's effect on me, was heartwrenching, and I didn't realize until years later, 
just how deep of a wound it had left.

It was a couple of years back; I was 20.
I had never "grown-up dated" anyone before.
Every romantic situation before this was pretty PG 13.
So when someone violated me. Someone I knew. Someone I had felt comfortable with, just moments before; It didn't dawn on me, that what this person did to me, was NOT OKAY.

It sounds ridiculous, but my mind was in shock. I was young and naive, and I felt like it was my fault.
I had gone on a date with him. I had wanted to make-out. I had wanted to have him touch my boobs.
I felt like a lot of women and men are groomed to feel; 
you said yes to something, that means they can take everything. Can't say no if it's already started. 
No matter if you want to or not. You're at fault. You "tempted" them. Shame on you. 
Stupid little nobody.

And the sad thing is. The harrowing fact that haunts me when I read that article is;
He probably didn't know he was doing anything wrong.
Because society has lead a dangerous indoctrination, to the detriment of both it's men and women;
that if the other party said yes to something, you can expect everything.
And you can throw caution to the wind, and stop taking the other person into account.
Stop seeing if they look excited. If they want to. Stop really listening to their words when they tell you they don't feel like it.

We were watching a movie. Or maybe it was a tv-series.
It's hard to concentrate when you have to physically make someone stop doing 
traumatic things to you.

After the boob-touching, which I was totally up for; that I wanted.
He tried rubbing my crotch.
I didn't like that. I wasn't up for that. I wasn't ready for that.
So I pushed his hand away.

And this is where, any normal, decent human being would think to themselves;
She pushed my hand away. She doesn't want me to do this. I should stop doing it.
He didn't.

Instead of responding with respecting my wishes to stop, he decided he just needed to be more forceful; have his hands be faster than mine.
Like this was just a "fun" game to him.

I think that's what a lot of people think. That it's "fun" and a "game".
That NO means; talk me into it.

I thought I had control. I thought I had a say.
He decided I didn't.
He decided that I didn't know what I wanted.
And to "talk me into it", he had to up his game.
His hands were faster than mine. And this time they didn't rub the outside of my clothes.
He hurried, and shoved his hand down my pants.
Shoved his disgusting fingers INSIDE me.
My body froze. Shock.
I could feel his sharp fingernails slicing inside my completely unaroused genitals.
It hurt so much.

When I tore his hands out of me. Away from me. And proceeded to hold my hands defensively in front of my crotch; he laughed, as he tried to struggle his way back in.
The fact that he laughed. That he treated this like some sort of game; like we were children, and he had been overpowered to not tickle me anymore, and I was guarding my sides against more tickles;
made me sure that this was how dating was.
That this was how adult boys behave.
A power struggle, a game of wills.
That this was "normal".
That feeling violated, was "normal".
That it was my fault; I hadn't been fast enough.

I told him no. Over and over again. Verbally and physically, by fighting him off.
My words, my actions. Nothing I did dissuaded him.
The mere fact that I was in his presence, that I didn't have an immediate violent response to what he did to me; made him think that it was all fun and games.

It didn't dawn on me, how brutally this had affected me, until I found myself in my current relationship; a healthy, consensual partnership.

Because even though I wanted my boyfriend to touch me,
wanted him to touch me in every most intimate way possible; I froze.
It triggered buried fear from deep inside me;
to have someone else have access to me when I was so vulnerable.

It took me a while to realize what was happening, and to address it to myself, so I could start to separate that event from consensual sexual situations.

It's something I still struggle with sometimes.
Not just in sexual situations, but bodily contact in general.
I don't appreciate sudden, unexpected breaches of personal space. It makes me tense. 
It makes me freeze.

It saddens me how a lot of our society is reacting to that article.
Some even claiming that that woman's experience is "not valid as being violated" "not valid as assault".
Just because society had groomed the perpetrator to be too stupid to realize what he was doing, when he was doing it.
Just because she stayed in the apartment for a period of time, after first feeling violated.
That's what SHOCK does to a person.
When you go from feeling safe with someone, to suddenly feeling like PREY; it's shocking.
You don't expect it. You didn't see it coming. You're blindsided. And you don't know how to react to it.

I don't know the statistics on people who genuinely are bad fucking listeners, who are so indoctrinated by our fucked up "no means talk me into it" "saying yes to something is saying yes to everything" culture; that they don't realize what they're doing/have done to someone. Violating others. That they stop listening. That they get so "eager" they can't see past their own mind.
VS. the seriously disturbed people, who take advantage of this way of thinking in our society, knowing full-well that they're violating someone, is.

I think there are plenty of both.
And we need to start talking about it.
And acknowledging what major a problem it is.

Monday, 13 March 2017