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Oct 22 apoptotic commented on Savage Love.
"What is the point?" I ask myself. "It's the comments section of a sex advice column. No one will read it, and even if they do, no one will care."

"The point," comes the answer, "is that you won't sleep tonight unless you write this down."


From a very young age I was surrounded by adults who drank. Not necessarily heavy, usually the 'few beers after work' sort of thing, but certainly at any social gathering, (including kids' birthday parties) there was drinking. And at the end of the night, after Thanksgiving dinner was over, but before the yearly showing of Willy Wonka came on the local affiliate, after the birthday cake was all eaten, or the condolences were given after the wake, I was forced to say goodbye to adult women and men that had been drinking. Some of them heavily. And that often included a hug.

Usually this was no big deal, but sometimes there was an Uncle who was particularly sloppy, or a mechanic friend of my father's who was a bit too rough or scary looking, or really, just a near-stranger that I didn't want touching me. But my parents compelled me to be polite and well-behaved and allow men who stank, men who squeezed too hard or for too long, and occasionally, even a man who got tearful, to draw me in and hold me there however he liked and for as long as he liked.

Were these men all perverts? Certainly not. Did they make me uncomfortable? Certainly many of them did. As a matter of fact, given the way some of them awkwardly fumbled during these hugs, I'm sure some of them were a bit uncomfortable as well.

Did they have ill intent? Mostly they did not. Until some of them did.

I had an Uncle who squeezed too tight for too long and who was famous for being the one who loved to dole out "birthday spankings". He made me uncomfortable, but I had long ago learned that was normal. So when he did something that made me very uncomfortable, I didn't question it. I didn't protest. And I didn't tell. There was no need for him to threaten me. I just knew there would be no point.

Then the bus driver in the 3rd grade who took a special interest in me. He bought me little gifts, which at first thrilled me and made me feel special. My favorite was a yo-yo that would light up mid-spin. Something my parents denied me because it was too expensive. Something none of the other kids had. So how could I protest when he kindly drew me onto his lap and held me there tightly and told me what a pretty little girl I was?

And at age 10 my summer sitter's elderly neighbor. Again, he took a special interest in me, embarrassed and delighted me by telling everyone how pretty I was, and eventually, was left alone with me for short periods during which he would inevitably seat me on his lap pressed against his erection. When he pressed my hand against it, I didn't protest, I just (as had done with the other men) waited for it to be over. No one understood why I began to hide when he appeared. They all laughed at my shyness, thought I must be embarrassed by what he fuss he made over me. And so they compelled me to come out, compelled me to go sit with the long-widowed, lonely old man again. And so I did.

When I was thirteen, I spent New Year's weekend at my eldest cousin's house. She had to work NYE at the local tavern and her 20 year old husband was put in charge of my other female cousin, 15, me, and my 11 year old sister. He offered the 15 year old a beer, and soon my sister and I were drinking too. We felt so adult, no parents around, playing board games, listening to albums, and drinking on a snowy NYE. Then he suggested strip poker. Already tipsy and wanting to impress him and my 15 year old cousin with how adult I was, I went along with it. I think my sister was just too stunned to say no. It ended with him naked and the three of us girls down to only our underpants. He called me to lie down with him on the couch. Obedient as always, and somewhat drunk, I did. I lay there quietly while he put his hand into my underwear and fondled me. Sick to my stomach, I froze. Eventually he stopped and went off with my 15 year old cousin into another part of the house. I told no one. Not his wife, not my sister, and certainly not my parents.

Encouraging, or even allowing unwanted touch by adults sends a very clear message to a child: Adults decide when and if and who may touch you. It doesn't matter if you're uncomfortable. It doesn't matter if you hate it. It doesn't matter if it hurts or makes you sick to your stomach. You need to keep your mouth shut and be polite and endure it. Period.

This is how we groom our own children to be victims of sexual assault before someone with ill intent ever lays a hand on them.

So to these MOTHERFUCKERS who want to apply "skepticism", who want to call this "hyper vigilance", who want to challenge this woman's read of her own child's discomfort (WHICH WAS LATER CONFIRMED BY HER DAUGHTER) and her decision to stop the unwanted touch, get her daughter out of proximity, and have a discussion with the child about the mother's own very relevant experiences:


Jan 11, 2014 apoptotic commented on I, Anonymous.

While I can't point to any studies, per se, and I have no idea what motivated the women in the college story you told, I can offer an anecdotal response as to why some people may be victimized again and again.

Speaking as a victim of childhood sexual assault and someone who has spent a significant amount of time in online CSA support groups reading the stories of others, I can offer this: The effects of sexual assault (especially in childhood, especially when perpetrated by someone you know and/or trust and *most* especially when the child is not believed/not removed from the situation/life is threatened/is blamed for the assault) engender a wide variety of twisted personal beliefs and coping behaviors, many of which can lead to a victim being victimized over and over again.

I have read more despondent "Why does this keep happening to me?" stories than I care to remember. One assault is tragic. Repeated assaults are agony beyond most people's understanding. Because of this, many people blame or do not believe the victim, which compounds the trauma and often keeps the victim from seeking help.

People deeply damaged by early assault will often move into a dissociative state when confronted by a potential abuser. They become paralyzed, unable to run, scream, or sometimes even move. Where a healthy person confronted by a skeezy stranger making an inappropriate proposition would move quickly away, a person traumatized by early sexual assault might freeze, or even move closer.

Further, a traumatized person will behave in a way that is recognizable to a serial offender. He deliberately uses an inappropriate lead-in to identify potential victims. He will know immediately by a person's response that he can move ahead, and if he is a studied offender, he will know exactly how to do what he intends and leave the victim believing it is her fault.
Dec 5, 2012 apoptotic commented on Merry Creepy Christmas, from John Travolta & Olivia Newton-John.
ONJs face makes me really, really, really, really sad.
Feb 29, 2012 apoptotic commented on "When Your Obese Brothers and Sisters Get Stuck in a Stairway During 9/11, Preventing Fit People From Getting Through and Surviving, You Make It My Business!".
Hilarious child. Your eating disorder won't protect you from ever getting sick. It is not only fat people who eat poorly that get diabetes and cancer, you know. But you don't know, do you? You are young and self-righteous and enjoy feeling superior. You are sure your junk science is some startling revelation for the planet.

Enjoy it while it lasts. After a few more years of eating the way you do, your body will start to break down in startling ways which (judging from your hysterical evangelical raw-vegan tone) you will read as a problem with "toxins" and likely attempt to combat with daily wheatgrass-and-raw-gravel enemas. Your glowing youth will fade into the yellow-green wasted complexion of a harpy in her 60s (though you will not be quite 40). And who will smile at your breasts and click on your videos then?

Or maybe someone will conk you on the head with a big rock like in the Flintstones and you will come to your senses. Yes. This is a good idea. Anyone with access to big rocks want to help this young lady out?
Nov 4, 2011 apoptotic commented on Savage Love.
#115: Sounds like you got your feelings hurt at a wedding somewhere along the way.

Also: I haven't been to a wedding like the one you describe in 20+ years. The behavior you're describing sounds like high school drama. There must be this, there must be that. What is this "must" bullshit? Who are these people? Sounds like you've been watching too much "Bridezilla".

Oct 20, 2011 apoptotic commented on Savage Love.

If she would have had shitty things to say about his looks and wanted to continue using him as a "pillar of support" while she ran around, keep dangling him, giving him hope while she banged other dudes, the response would have been the same.

Oh wait. No. It likely would have been far more vitriolic, because the phrase "pillar of support" would have been taken to mean "financial support" and she would have gotten flamed to hell for that.
Oct 19, 2011 apoptotic commented on Savage Love.
@107 and everyone who cries "Panties! Wad! Panties! Wad!"

"Shitting eggs" isn't a joke, it's a vulgar (and obviously intentionally humorous) Savage-ism for ovulating. Just as "canned ham dropped from a great height" was an early Savage-ism for vagina. It sounds funny and, oh hey? It's also hostile.

Why is it cool for ol' Dan to get his turd-sack in a wad when someone cracks wise about the gay, but not cool to call Dan out on his hostility towards lady bits and breeder-type sex? Um, I guess that would be because most of the people reading this column are Dan fans and have their heads crammed so far up his accepting butthole they'll defend everything he writes, whether merely direct or openly assholish.

Hey y'all, I love SL too. That doesn't mean I blindly swallow everything he spews. Dan himself publicly apologized (as much as an apology as he ever gives) for the canned ham comment. He's not completely un-self aware, thank god. Defend the comment all you want, it's still openly truculent.
Oct 19, 2011 apoptotic commented on Savage Love.
Guys? I think I'm going to start referring to your balls as a turd-sack. Not out of hostility. Just 'cuz it's a funny play on words, see?

And because balls kinda look like a sack of turds. Admit it. You know I'm right.
Oct 19, 2011 apoptotic commented on Savage Love.
"Shitting eggs"?

O.K. Dan. We get it. You're the gayest gay who ever gayed. In case anyone is ever on the verge of forgetting how gross you think women's bodies are, you throw something in every third column or so to remind us.

I'm confused by how (in the same column, no less) you can be sensitive to women as people and a minute later throw out a little something nasty to let us know you still think we're gross.

I'm starting to think maybe the lady doth protest too much. That's IT! Dan secretly wants to bang BBW. Mystery solved.
Sep 7, 2011 apoptotic commented on Savage Love.

Nail. Head.

Signing off.