Everyday Victim Blaming

challenging institutional disbelief around domestic & sexual violence and abuse

I’m stunned by what I’ve found here

I wanted to understand this subject. To get firsthand information. So I came here and read through the twelve most recent submissions. All of them, start to finish.

I saw almost no examples of victim-blaming in any of them. This is not me denying that the examples given were victim-blaming; I'm saying that most of them gave no examples of anything I could even vaguely describe as that.

Some were stories of sexual violence, but with no actual blaming of the victim that I could discern. One was a woman who chose to cheat on her husband rather than leave him, and how she doesn't want to feel bad about that. One was a story of an online argument with someone who was debating whether victims share any blame. One was a rant against people not using 'correct' language to describe rape.

One story did mention someone ignorantly asking what a rape victim had been wearing and insisting she must have been giving off signals. I'll completely grant that. That's unacceptable. Yet in this same story, the male narrator mentions a woman grabbing his crotch without his consent and threatening to cut his balls off. And in no way does he indicate this was sexual assault. He seems not to even consider it. I don't know what to make of that.

I'm not saying I deny that victim-blaming exists. Not at all. In fact, I have no idea what to feel now. I wanted to see and understand victim-blaming and instead I saw almost none. I don't know what to feel about that.

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2 thoughts on “I’m stunned by what I’ve found here

  • Admin says:

    Alex

    We’re happy that you want to find out more about victim blaming. We have published your piece as we acknowledge that not everyone has the understanding to grasp the nuance of victim blaming.

    Our survivors are telling us (and you, if you’ve read every piece) that they didn’t report their rapes because they didn’t think they’d be believed. That their families don’t understand because they think women can somehow avoid abuse by behaving differently. That they feel guilty about something that someone else did TO them.

    The only people to be blamed for rape, domestic abuse and violence are the perpetrators of those acts.

    We are sorry that you couldn’t get that.

  • Tom says:

    Alex. I’m assuming that you are male. Let me clear up the “crotch grabbing” episode for you. I wrote that piece. I didn’t go into massive detail because that wasn’t the point of the story. First and foremost the woman concerned was a very good friend of mine and that sort of banter and playfulness was entirely appropriate to our relationship and within our boundaries. She actually grabbed the material of my trousers. I thought it was obvious that the threat to cut my balls off was a joke and again it was within the boundaries of the sort of banter we had. At no point did I ever think it might happen. We loved each other as friends and it was a joke.
    The main point of the story was about a young woman who was grabbed by four strangers and attacked in such a way she eventually killed herself. And the idiocy of comments that somehow suggested she may have indicated she was looking for that.