“Why I didn’t and won’t report my rape”

Trigger Warning: Rape, sexual assault, abusive relationship, victim blaming

Everyone should feel that they can report their rape. Not everyone does for lots of different, often highly personal reasons. We live in a society that blames victims and survivors, and which places responsibility on women to avoid rape, not on men to not rape. Our society sexualises women in such a way that all women are viewed as sexually available at all times to all men and creates the idea that a women who refuses to have sex is unfairly denying her boyfriend/husband/friend/date. Our society teaches men that sex is their right and that women are fickle and often mean yes when they say no. Our society teaches men that they should pursue women and sex even when their would-be bedroom partner is unwilling, because ‘a no is just a yes that needs convincing’. I recently told that I had a responsibility to report my rape for the sake of future victims. This is a list of the reasons why I didn’t and won’t report the rape. Reason 37 makes me feel very guilty and ashamed. I want to protect other women, but there is no way I can do that without exposing myself to possible physical, mental and emotional danger and the potential of irreversible estrangement from my family. Further I have no reason to believe that my report would be taken seriously, be investigated or result in conviction. In fact I have every reason to believe that he would be acquitted and would use that as a way to justify future rapes.

1. Because at 17 I didn’t know it was rape.

2. Because I was taught that sex is never much fun for women.

3. Because I was taught that sex is dirty and not something nice girls talk about.

4. Because I was in a relationship with my rapist.

5. Because we did have consensual sex, see below.

6. Because my rapist used coercive methods to make me have sex with him.

7. Because my rapist used coercive methods to make me turn up at his house naked under my coat.

8. Because my rapist used coercive methods to make me wear ‘sexy’ clothes.

9. Because the above would be used against me in public and in court.

10. Because it was a generally abusive relationship.

11. Because I went to my rapist’s house willingly, even after the rape and multiple other sexual assaults.

12. Because his house was safer than home.

13. Because he knows where my mother lives.

14. Because he knows my friends and other people that know me.

15. Because he is well respected in my mother’s church and the local community.

16. Because he is a ‘good’ man and so unable (in the eyes of society) to have committed rape and assault.

17. Because I will lose my right to anonymity and confidentially by the right of the accused to know who their accuser is.

18. Because I will be slut shammed very, very publically.

19. Because I will be victim blamed very, very publically.

20. Because my family will be harassed.

21. Because my family will slut shame and victim blame me.

22. Because the above will be done by ‘good’ people, whose righteousness is founded on their ‘goodness’ making them above criticism.

23. Because it might become potentially dangerous for me to go out in my home town. Anywhere and at anytime.

24. Because other people were complicit in the maintenance of the relationship, even when they expressed concern about his treatment of me.

25. Because I have since had sex with other people and this will be used against me.

26. Because I have a medical condition that makes sex painful and this might be used against me to justify rape as consensual sex that hurt because of my nerve damaged vulva.

27. Because I am a little bit kinky.

28. Because I didn’t fight back so it can’t be rape.

29. Because I wore skirts to his house.

30. Because he ignored me when I said no, but I didn’t scream or cry.

31. Because consent must be actively withdrawn, silence and non-responsiveness is not always understood as a withdrawal of consent by the courts.

32. Because I am already victim blamed by faux feminists who say that a woman has the right to fight back and imply that if you don’t it is your fault.

33. Because I am already victim blamed by ‘left’ activists who see it as an activist’s responsibility to always call out their attackers and if you don’t you are a bad leftie.

34. Because my rape is historic so there is no physical evidence.

35. Because I would have to prove that I withdrew consent making it my word against his.

36. Because the conviction rate is so low.

37. Because it is not my responsibility to protect future victims.

Share this article
  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Delicious
  • Reddit
  • StumbleUpon
  • Add to favorites
  • Email
  • RSS

Comments are closed.