Columns

I, Anonymous

This Is Not for You

This isn't about what you did. Despite knowing I was unwilling, despite my repeatedly telling you no, despite the look of sadness and revulsion in my eyes, you decided to penetrate me on my friend's couch while I was drunk and half asleep. No, this isn't for you. Because you don't know you raped me. Because society might not even call this rape. Your friends (who should be my friends too) definitely wouldn't. If I really didn't want you to fuck me, I could have pushed you off as soon as I knew what was going on. You aren't bigger or stronger. This isn't because I know a police report would be useless and would cause more damage than good. No, Anonymous, this is not for you, but for every man. For every man who has heard my apprehension and hesitation and thought the subject was open for debate. That thought their erection took precedence over my comfort. That thought I'd like it once we started. This is because when I say I don't want to, I shouldn't have to have an army of excuses at my disposal. This is because "I don't want to" should be enough! And this is because not one but many men have employed these tactics against me. I'm sick of all of your excuses for manhandling me and bowling over my resistance: "But you're so sexy..." "But I thought you liked me..." "But you have such a nice ass..." "But I just want to fuck you so bad..." "C'mon baby..." Stop! Just stop. You raped me. And I'm still coming to terms with that thought. But this is not for you. This is for the society that raised you and taught you that this was okay. Because it's not.

—Anonymous

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Comments (36) RSS

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1
When will real men come forward and finally tell the pigs in men's clothing to FUCK OFF, already?
Is it any wonder that there are so many single people in the United States contentedly loving alone?
Posted by auntie grizelda on July 1, 2014 at 9:41 PM · Report this
2
I, Anon used once again as Stranger editorial. Yawn.
Posted by typical lefty on July 1, 2014 at 11:56 PM · Report this
3
wow, a very good I Anon. My sympathies to the author. I wince to think what the comments are going to be on this one with this being to most troll infested comments section I've ever come across.
Posted by sweet g on July 2, 2014 at 9:25 AM · Report this
4
@3 sweet g: Agreed. My point entirely in @1.
Posted by auntie grizelda on July 2, 2014 at 10:43 AM · Report this
keshmeshi 5
My sympathies, Anon. I wish you the best in overcoming this, and in finding a new group of friends.
Posted by keshmeshi on July 2, 2014 at 2:37 PM · Report this
6
Dear I, Anon, why are you hanging out with and getting shit-faced drunk with douche bags like these? The type of people your friend hang out with and invite to their shit-faced drunk-fests reflects on them. Take some responsibility for your life and improve the quality of the "friends" you hang out with.
Posted by Arthur Zifferelli on July 2, 2014 at 3:27 PM · Report this
7
Look, there is nothing that justifies rape, but good fucking grief, you get pass-out-shit-face-drunk with people you apparently don't know all that well, and you accept no ownership of the (predictable) outcome? Oh, but I'm sure you should be able to sleep nude on a park bench in in Pioneer Square...
Posted by Arthur Zifferelli on July 2, 2014 at 6:03 PM · Report this
8
@Arthur Zifferelli - It's natural to blame others when the wound is still fresh, in time it becomes easier to reflect on and accept the part we play when things go wrong.

The best way Anon can heal and move on is to deny her rapist the ability to keep on hurting her. As long as she allows that pain to rule her feelings, he still has control.
Posted by RickFromTexas on July 2, 2014 at 8:32 PM · Report this
9
@8:

Ah yes, here it comes: "Don't blame the victim".

And of course, that's correct. But I'm not blaming the victim, simply saying that everyone has some degree of personal responsibility, and part of that is to not put themselves into the middle of a nexus of assholes and than get falling-down-drunk-shitfaced, and pass out.

Sort of a "common sense" thing.

Of course even the passed-out drunk-off-their-ass ladies do not deserve to be raped, no one does.

But of course, common sense tells most people that it may not be a good idea to go to some party with sketchy people you don't know, proceed to consume so much alcohol that you pass out on the couch... Not a good idea.

Personal responsibility, folks. People need to stop blaming others for their own fuck-ups.
Posted by Arthur Zifferelli on July 2, 2014 at 11:35 PM · Report this
10
Thanks for speaking up, Anon. You speak for a lot of us. Zifferelli- your bullshit is so predictable it's on the rape-apologist bingo card. But, just for anyone who might take your hardcore trolling seriously, the majority (more than 2/3) of sexual assaults are committed by someone the victim knows, and 38% of sexual assaults are committed by someone fairly well known to the victim.

Anon, like you, I'm so fucking tired of assholes who can apparently read social cues well enough to hold a job, to drive a vehicle and predict when another driver is going to pull out in front of them or swerve into their lane, to detect jokes and sarcasm in social situations, to recognize when someone is lying to them, but suddenly claim to "not understand what she meant" when a woman says no to them. I am so sorry about what this rapist did to you. I am so sorry your social group isn't a safe place for you to seek support. There are more of us who understand than you might think, and I hope you find some who can help you deal with the aftermath.
Posted by AlsoASurvivor on July 3, 2014 at 1:02 AM · Report this
11
Why does poor Arthur Zifferelli get so much hate? Just because he's a man? Just because he tries to inject some ugly truth into the conversation? He already stated quite clearly that rape is wrong and there is absolutely no excuse that could make it acceptable behavior but once again, some people feel the need to jump all over him and accuse him of being a "rape-apologist". A rape apologist. Wow. That's some heavy shit. This anonymous poster admits that she hangs around with jerks who wouldn't be sympathetic to what happened to her. Also, she CLEARLY says in her post that she could have pushed the guy off of her because he wasn't stronger than she was. But, instead, she looks at him with "sadness and revulsion in her eyes". Oh, give me a goddamn break! While it's true that when she told this asshole repeatedly that she wasn't interested, she just remained passive while he raped her! She didn't fight, she didn't scream, she didn't try to claw his damn eyes out--no, she just let him do it. So, it really sucks, yep, but looking at someone with "sadness and revulsion" and not doing a goddamn thing except lay there like a mannequin is on HER! Here are her words again, for those of you who glossed over this the first time you read her stupid post: "If I really didn't want you to fuck me, I could have pushed you off as soon as I knew what was going on". She could have but didn't. So, now she wants to sob and cry 'rape'? Sorry, sister, but that's bullshit. I think you sort of wanted to have sex with this guy but you felt guilty that you wanted to have sex (the sadness and revulsion) with him and then later, thinking about what happened, instead of owning your feelings, you decided to call it rape. Well, sweetie, I think you need to grow up. What happened to you was unfortunate but YOU could have, by your own admission, stopped this.
More...
Posted by DrummerGrrl on July 3, 2014 at 7:37 AM · Report this
Lissa 12
Oh Anonymous I am so sorry this has happened to you, and that you can’t even count on your friends. I’m sorry that you have to be so strong all on your own. It breaks my heart that you are so alone. I’m also sorry that so many people in this thread will ignore your point, and instead find ways to make this about you. You should have known better, you should have fought back harder, you shouldn’t have done what everyone else a that party did. Get drunk with their friends. Because you should have had super powers and known that while it was ok for everybody else to trust their friends, and it was ok for everybody else to cut loose, it wasn’t ok for you to. No, no, no. Not you.
Yes, many commenter here will ignore this part of your post entirely:

For every man who has heard my apprehension and hesitation and thought the subject was open for debate. That thought their erection took precedence over my comfort. That thought I'd like it once we started. This is because when I say I don't want to, I shouldn't have to have an army of excuses at my disposal. This is because "I don't want to" should be enough! And this is because not one but many men have employed these tactics against me. I'm sick of all of your excuses for manhandling me and bowling over my resistance: "But you're so sexy..." "But I thought you liked me..." "But you have such a nice ass..." "But I just want to fuck you so bad..." "C'mon baby..." Stop! Just stop.

Because they don’t think saying “I don’t want to” should be enough.

@1, 3, 4, 5 , 10 and to a certain degree 8: If it weren’t before noon where I am, I’d say let’s go get drunk together. At least we can count on none of us thinking that would be an excuse to rape each other.
Posted by Lissa on July 3, 2014 at 10:43 AM · Report this
13
sounds like a case where less malt liquor might have been advisable eh Ziff?

The key question is: does the definition of rape include when the recipient says "no" in a variety of forms, is repeatedly ignored but eventually allows the act to take place when they *could* have prevented it?

I use *could* because this is the tricky point. Is Anon indicating that she lacked the self esteem/confidence to push him off or is she now blaming herself for becoming overpowered? - But how much difference does it really make? Haven't women been raped in this way since ... always, pressurised, manipulated, intimidated?

The "take more responsibility" stance seems similar to the age old advice to kids against bullying where one should "stand up for yourself" and "fight back" ... handy to know if you aren't already terrified. So, yes, it does sound like victim blaming to me.
Posted by truck on July 3, 2014 at 10:44 AM · Report this
14
This has happened to most women at one time or another, whether it's with a boyfriend who you're 'supposed' to let this happen with, (Because, you know, it's happened 30 times before), or whether it's some stranger at a party, makes no difference.

Arthur, yes, to some degree I agree, I am old enough and smart enough now to know that, but when you're younger, and society tells you a whole slew of mixed messages about yourself and your sexuality, and where those boundaries need to be, you can't necessarily figure it out for yourself after a few beers.
And what? SHe's supposed to go out and remain sober on the weekend just in case?

I get your points, truly, but yes, to some degree, she should be able to lie on a park bench naked (Ok, maybe not in Pioneer Square), and not get treated like that.
I was on a bus last summer, some douche felt me up, and I wasn't being stupid or not sensible, it happens anyway, men can sometimes be pigs, common sense has nothing to do with it, even if it should.
Posted by Chandira on July 3, 2014 at 2:45 PM · Report this
15
Thanks for your response, Chandira, mostly I just get pure hate here. But I'll tell you something, as a 50 year old man who grew up in Portland with two Socialist parents that met at Reed College, I am very not a right-wing misogynist. I do, however, believe strongly in personal responsibility. It might have something to do with my own history, where I was essentially considered a responsible adult by my parents at 14.

Personal responsibility

I, Anon put herself in a situation with people she should have had at least a smidgen of clue that she couldn't trust (and who altimatly let her down by inviting Asshole Number One to the party), and proceed to get hammered.

This *IS NOT* the same as wearing "tight jeans" and having some asshole say "you asked for it". Not the same at all.

When you put yourself in sketchy situations with unreliable people and proceed to get hammered, the outcome can often be not what you would like. But when you set yourself up this way, you also bare some responsibility. We all bare some responsibility for our actions the may or may not lead to bad things

Seriously, what kind of people is this person hanging out with? Horny 20-somethings, obviously.

And to all you haters, Fuck You.
Posted by Arthur Zifferelli on July 3, 2014 at 5:59 PM · Report this
16
i have been in this situation too many times. With trusted, male friends, at that. Sometimes involving alcohol or psychedelics, sometimes totally sober. And to those who are faulting her for not aggressively fighting back, allow me to point a few things out~
1. As a survivor of childhood sexual abuse, i not only do not have clear boundaries when it comes to my own body, but i also have a horrible, passive guilt that was raped into me from the age of 5 on. Saying no, let alone fighting back, is not something that comes naturally to me. i learned early on that it was much easier to be quiet & not to fight...too much. That my body was something to be used & abused. Though i WILL say no, i will always end up just giving in. This is only in situations where it is a male that i know. Violent stranger rapes are a different story. While the OP may not have the same experiences as me, i understand, on so many levels, what it is to have your resistance worn down. And statistically, the majority of women do experience some form of rape or sexual abuse in their lifetime. And how do we think that this might affect them?
2. Personal Responsibility.
Let's put this into 2~
1. Women absolutely do need to start taking responsibility for their own safety. But, dudes don't get to have it both ways. We are to blame if we go to a party, drink & get raped. Also, we are to blame if men have sex with us when we say no. Look, i am no fan of 3rd wave feminist culture. And we will leave it at that. And i do hope that our young ladies start making choices that don't endanger them. But, check it ~ asking a young college woman to not drink, & to not be raped, is like asking a lamb not to wander into the pasture & be naturally eaten by wolves. THAT is what is, & what has always been.
The difference is that we are now calling it out.
Do we blame the sheep? Well, the coyote is hungry. We aren't sheep anymore. But, i don't think that we know what we really are.
i think that she made a really good point. She said, it wasn't him. She saw what had happened to her & came to a place of knowing. She found her boundaries. That is fucking Awesome.
More...
Posted by kalikill7 on July 3, 2014 at 11:54 PM · Report this
17
Would have been less distracted reading this without nodding along to the accompanying PJ soundtrack in my head.

But, yeah, I'd love a world where everyone was so trustworthy and nice that you could just get completely fucked up and lay around in peace.

The guy was a rapey POS, but I,A do you plan to repeat your experiment and see if the results become more to your liking?
Posted by mizmojo on July 4, 2014 at 4:59 AM · Report this
18
@15 where did you get the "I, Anon put herself in a situation with people she should have had at least a smidgen of clue that she couldn't trust" from?

As it seems to be the basis of your argument, I think it's fair to challenge you to demonstrate that is a reasonable assumption.

Btw, if you think that everyone that disagrees with you is a hater then you really need to develop some nuance to your world-view.
I for one don't give a shit about you one way or another ;-)
Posted by truck on July 4, 2014 at 5:39 AM · Report this
Lissa 19
@18: Yes apparently Arthur lives in a world where being invited to a friend's party should be taken as a threat of potential violence, and to attend without remaining in a cat like state of readiness to thwart any attack from heretofore trusted companions is nothing less than a lack of Personal Responsibility.
I think Arthur may live with pirates.
Posted by Lissa on July 4, 2014 at 12:56 PM · Report this
20 Comment Pulled (Spam) Comment Policy
21
I think there is too much emphasis on how much this girl had to drink. Did she show bad judgment by drinking that much? Yes. Should she have been raped? No. I would like to point out that most rape is not done at the hands of a stranger. She most likely knew and trusted this guy enough to feel like she could have a few drinks and be safe.

Saying she got raped b/c she showed bad judgment is exactly like saying she got raped b/c she wore tight clothes. It is the same argument.

I shudder to think about all the stupid things I did in my twenties. I went out alone late at night, I smoked, I drank, I got high, I made out with other women in bars, I had one-night stands, I once left my purse in a bar with a friend who thought I had left after the place closed and then I didn't even have cab money or change for a payphone to get home-I was literally stranded on the street that night and mercifully a kind cab driver took me home safe and sound at no charge (there are angels out there, too, not just monsters).

If it was true that only bad girls got raped, then no good girls would ever be raped either. If it was that easy then women could avoid being victims simply by covering themselves head to toe and never going to any parties ever. No one gets to blame her for what that asshole did.

That said, would I ever do those stupid things I did in my twenties again? No. I'm in my thirties and learned from my mistakes. I know now that I was just lucky that most of the people I met along the way in life were pretty decent human beings and not rapists.
Posted by misogyny is ugly on July 4, 2014 at 5:32 PM · Report this
22
I am against victim-blaming. Rape is NEVER the victim's fault; it is entirely the fault of the person who saw another human being in a vulnerable state, and rather than helping them or simply leaving them alone, chose to harm them for their own gain. Such choices are inherently cruel and evil by every moral code we have, and they are the basis of many, many crimes (not just rape).

Of course it's important to protect ourselves, and if the LW asked me for advice I would tell her (from experience) that passing out drunk around people she doesn't know and trust completely is dangerous. But the most she is to "blame" for is not taking precautions to protect herself from people with evil intentions. The ENTIRE blame for the evil itself rests with its perpetrators.
Posted by the_spiral on July 5, 2014 at 8:21 AM · Report this
23
There's no evidence this person was raped at all. There is, however, ample evidence that most of the men who comment in The Stranger forums have been neutered
Posted by Arthur Zifferelli on July 6, 2014 at 12:11 PM · Report this
24
As a guy who went an embarrassingly long time without sex, it never occurred to me that coercion and/or rape was an option. It's disturbing to see so many apologists for this behavior. All I can say is I hope this woman does something about it, publicly shames him at least.
Posted by prod rockmon on July 6, 2014 at 4:43 PM · Report this
Lissa 25
Shorter Arthur Zifferelli finding few in agreement with him:

" Yaaar! Shiver me timbers ye all be poltroons!"
::stumps off dejectedly on peg leg to feed parrot::
Posted by Lissa on July 7, 2014 at 1:31 PM · Report this
26
men are fucked. society is fucked. at least Anon you can be thankful you weren't in India being raped to death by a pack of Indian men dogs. These dog men in America, use their smiles and money and dope and education and music to cast their dirty magic on alcoholic young people like yourself so they can hump and leave their biology festering within you. Again Anon thank your lucky stars you haven't been kidnapped into the world wide sex slave trade and fed heroin to make you fuck a couple dozen dirty filthy dogs a day. learn from the shit that comes your way.
Posted by willard206 on July 8, 2014 at 2:18 AM · Report this
Seattlebcc 27
"I could have pushed you off as soon as I knew what was going on. You aren't bigger or stronger"... Anonymous is a victim in more ways than one.
Posted by Seattlebcc on July 8, 2014 at 7:32 AM · Report this
Puty 28
This is a really important I, Anonymous column. Thanks for sharing it.
Posted by Puty on July 8, 2014 at 8:13 AM · Report this
29
I could have pushed you off as soon as I knew what was going on. You aren't bigger or stronger...
But you didn't.

Not rape.
Posted by Arthur Zifferelli on July 8, 2014 at 1:20 PM · Report this
Slam1263 30
REAL MEN don't rape.

Maybe IA should act like a REAL WOMAN, they tend to attract REAL MEN.

Skanks harvesting skanks. Drunkenly.
Posted by Slam1263 on July 9, 2014 at 12:01 AM · Report this
31
I wonder if Anon has been sexually abused as a child. She seems to have boundary issues. This sounds like the type of manipulation pedophiles use to cajole their victim into submission.
Posted by portland scribe on July 9, 2014 at 2:55 PM · Report this
32
You people are acting like this is a sketchy party full of sketchy people she can't trust. Most rapes are committed by people you DO know and think you CAN trust. I've gone to sleep quite drunk in the same room as a very good friend I called brother, who I knew for years and helped me out of tough/dangerous spots before. Someone I knew had my back. Turns out years later he raped two of my friends. It could have been her boyfriend, or her husband or her cousin. It could have been her girlfriend and a finger. Who the fuck are you to make these assumptions?
Posted by Caralain on July 9, 2014 at 9:23 PM · Report this
33
This has happened to me in my 20's where I was not really attracted to the guy but I let him fuck me anyway because he had been so nice, or he seemed so lonely. I wasn't ready to pass out and not so drunk that I can say I was so impaired that my judgement was off. I knew I wouldn't like it,but I figured what harm could it do to give the guy a little comfort. They didn't rape me, because I'm a pretty stocky girl and I can fight back if I want- I raped me. Because I was emotionally numb inside. Because I hated myself and wanted to form a callous over all the crap I'd been told about how good girls act when I was a child. Because I thought I deserved it. Because in a way I could hurt them too for their weakness with my emotional detachment. Because I could be a real bitch when I was low and I got a petty little kick out of politely refusing to give them my number after.I don't know all the reasons why even now.
Posted by Nisnimnin on July 10, 2014 at 3:26 PM · Report this
34
This is rape. She said no. She was not prepared or willing to fight. Many people (especially women) have little psychological or physical fortitude for violence. The possibility of violence is present, and the violence is suspended as long as the victim is physically compliant. That is why some people (myself included) weigh the consequences and decide to push their self-defense no further than a firm, repeated, consistent verbal no. I'm weak, physically and emotionally. I admit it, while Anon will not. And many of you say that crimes against us are therefore our fault.
Posted by 4568 on July 18, 2014 at 3:20 AM · Report this
35
I and every guy I know has gotten drunk enough to not know how I got home. If anyone had raped me I damn sure would be focused on their crime and not my dumb decision to become helpless. Seems like a bit of a different standard.
Posted by Doe on July 25, 2014 at 12:31 PM · Report this
36
When I was much younger, and less experienced, I spent the night with friends after a party with lots of alcohol & pot. Another girl and I had to share the living room for sleeping quarters, and I was on a couch. Three guys I didn't know slept on the floor.

Sometime in the night, one of the floor guys started to touch my chest, lingering there. I presume he was trying to rouse me, figuring it was worth a shot. I couldn't figure out what to do except continue pretending I was asleep.

Sure, I could have called him out, then and there. I was not confident enough to do that. I was afraid of being embarrassed, like somehow it was my fault, or I handled things wrong, or whatever.

Thankfully, that was the end of it. He gave up and went back to sleep. This was almost 40 years ago, sexual assault and rape had more particular definitions, then. If you weren't beat up, or you didn't fight, then you wanted it.

I take anon's word that she could have stopped it if she wished, but did she know what would happen if she had? I don't know, either. Would her friend believe her over another "friend"? Would something ugly occur in response to her refusal?

There really are people who find it easier, safer, less threatening to go along. It's messed up.
Posted by wenchacha on July 27, 2014 at 7:57 AM · Report this

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