Facing the Reality of Men Who’ve Been Raped By Women

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An article in The Atlantic exposes the reality of male survivors who’ve been assaulted by females, including Don Draper, the main character in the show Mad Men.

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“Sarah is nine years old and hasn’t been to a sleepover yet. I’ve let Michael go on sleepovers since he was six, because it’s not so scary.”

That’s what one of my friends said to me as we sat at a picnic table at a barbecue with a bunch of other parents. I looked at her curiously and asked why she was worried less about her son than her daughter. She explained that when she was growing up, one of her friend’s dads had abused his daughter, and also some of her friends during sleepovers. She’s still traumatized from the stories she heard.

That’s when I became the downer of the party, as I am sometimes wont to do, as a writer in the field of sex and gender.

“Did you know that 1 in 6 boys are sexual abused by the time they reach adulthood?”

The table went quiet. Another dad, one of the sweetest guys I know, said, “Wait a minute. Is that statistic for real?”

Relying upon what I’ve learned from Chris Anderson of Male Survivor and the guys at 1in6.org  and other male survivor groups, I explained that somehow we’ve come to believe that sexual abuse and rape only happens to girls—or that sexual abuse that does happen to boys is extremely rare.

But it’s not rare.

1in6 is an organization whose mission it is the support survivors of unwanted sexual contact in their childhood. And as they explain, that statistic is probably low.

We looked around the party. Coincidentally, there were exactly 6 men in attendance, and many more little boys—our children—running around and playing.

The dad went on to explain, “I’m going to sound like an idiot here, but since I only have boys, I honestly thought that just wasn’t something I had to worry about.” He was shaken, I could tell.

I felt bad introducing such a heavy topic, but after that people started opening up about men and boys they know who have been sexually abused. It’s not exactly ideal barbecue conversation, but I truly believe that the more we bring subjects like these into the light, the healthier our society becomes. If one of the men in that group had indeed been abused, he may not realize he’s in such good company. If one of our boys, God forbid, were ever assaulted, perhaps we would be more equipped to handle it—to realize there are resources and that boys who are survivors are not alone.

A few weeks ago, writer and professor Abigail Rine wrote about the reveal that Don Draper, the main character from the hit AMC series Mad Men, had been raped as an adolescent by a prostitute in the brothel where he lived with his pregnant stepmother after they’d become destitute.

Screen Shot 2013-06-18 at 4.13.02 PMMs. Rine didn’t mince words. It didn’t matter how sexy that prostitute was. It didn’t matter that the prostitute believed she knew what Don wanted and needed (sex). It didn’t matter that Don was a boy. It was rape because Don said no and was clearly scared. Not to mention that he was a minor (Though in the 1930s that may not have been a crime as it is today.)

Rine revisited this subject in more depth today on The Atlantic, where she wrote an entire article, Don Draper Was Raped, about the importance of this scene in bringing the sexual assault of boys and men to the surface. Particularly the assault of boys by women and older girls. Rine explains how Dick’s assault unfolded (for those of you who don’t follow the show, Dick Whitman is Don Draper’s real name):

Throughout most of the episode, Aimee serves as a surrogate mother for Dick; she lets him recuperate in her bed and offers him rest, comforting words, spoonfuls of warm broth. However, in their penultimate scene together, Aimee’s maternal kindness turns oddly predatory. She approaches her bed where Dick is lying weakly, fever newly broken, and asks, “Don’t you want to know what all the fuss is about? “No,” Dick replies forcefully, averting his eyes and hugging the blankets tightly against his chest as she reaches under the covers to touch him. “Stop it,” he says, clearly uncomfortable, even afraid. But Aimee doesn’t stop.

Rine then takes to task many writers who summarized Don/Dick’s assault as consensual—or simply of the loss of his virginity. She challenges folks to consider how we would interpret the scene had Dick been an adolescent girl:

The most unsettling account I read was Paul MacInnes’ recap for The Guardian, which somehow concludes that Dick not only consents to Aimee’s advances, but actively desires them: “Aimee knew what young Dick really wanted and was prepared to do what was necessary to give it to him.”

Let’s pause for a moment and imagine a parallel scene between, say, a slightly older Sally Draper and an adult man. He tries to seduce her. “No,” she says, when he begins to touch her, “Stop it.” He ignores her; she lapses into silence; he has sex with her. Now let’s picture the feminist outcry if a writer for a mainstream publication were to describe this as not only consensual, but as Sally getting what she “really wanted.”

An outcry to that statement would be appropriate, and it is appropriate here. This boy was raped.

In talking with friends about this scene, most agree he was raped but many also say, “It just seems like that’s every guy’s dream.”

That thinking—that all guys are turned on all the time, that all guys want sex all the time, that guys are undiscerning about their sexual partners, is incredibly dangerous. I wrote about this last year, explaining the case of a young man I know who was raped by a girl named Maria whom he was interested in. I talked to Maria about the situation a few years after it happened, when she was in a state of profound remorse over what happened.

She was 16 when it happened and had been fed a story her entire life about how all guys want is sex, and how guys will screw anything that walks. She also had a profound problem with insecurity and only later did she realize that her main sense of validation came from being sexually desired.

Maria simply couldn’t conceive of a guy saying “no” and meaning it. Not a guy like Rob, at least, a guy whom she knew had hooked up with, and even had sex with, a few girls from our school. She also thought it would make him like her more if she were sexually dominant, like Sharon Stone in Basic Instinct, whose no-panties leg-crossing scene was considered the sexiest thing ever in the 1990s—when in reality, it is disturbing and intrusive.

One reason the myth of men always wanting “it” is so pervasive is because we’ve never really had a model for male survivors of assault by women—we’ve barely had models of male survivors of assault by men. That’s why we’ve been so grateful to writers like  James Landrith and Levi Greenacres, who have shared their stories with The Good Men Project community in the past. A year ago, Mike D’Amora bravely wrote about his terrifying and frantic rape at the hands of a violent female perpetrator on Thought Catalogue. Survivor stories—true ones and fictionalized ones in media such as Mad Men—help us to understand the realities of sexual assault against boys and men.

Don Draper (née Dick Whitman) survived the assault, but we see severe damage in his adult life. He didn’t have support. He grew up to be incredibly self-destructive and destructive to those around him as an alcoholic and sex addict, as I wrote about a few weeks ago. Obviously not all survivors face these challenges, but some do. A prostitute, even a sexy one, violating you sexually is going to have some long-term effects and thank God some mainstream media is finally recognizing that rape is never sexy. Not when it’s against a woman, and not when it’s against a boy or a man. And despite what we’ve seen in TV and movies, like the Adam Sandler flick “That’s My Boy“, statutory rape is not funny.

Yes, I agree with Abigail Rine. Don Draper was raped, just as too many other boys have been in this country. And it’s time we started talking about it.

What do you think? Do stories like Don Draper’s help raise awareness about male survivors of sexual assault?

How do you think we can we better support male survivors in our society?

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About Joanna Schroeder

Joanna Schroeder is the type of working mom who opens her car door and junk spills out all over the ground. She serves as Executive Editor of The Good Men Project and is a freelance writer whose work has appeared on sites like xoJane, hlntv.com, and The Huffington Post. Joanna loves playing with her sons, skateboarding with her husband, and hanging out with friends. Her dream is to someday finish her almost-done novel and get some sleep. Follow her shenanigans on Twitter.

Comments

  1. “though in the 1930’s that may have not been a crime as it is today” Don’t count on it! Oh, it may be a ‘crime'(in legal statute) but for the most part (At least where I live) it’s not really very vigorously prosecuted. As in fact the last 4 cases of teachers or T.A.’s having sex with students (some as young as 14) Not 1 day in jail was dispensed in sentencing! ‘Supervised Probation’ seems to be in vogue. By the way, I’m speaking strictly Female adults and Male children in all of these cases. A fellow I work with was telling me of getting text messages for his 16 year old son on his phone from 24-26 year old women (they thought it was the sons phone) “I’m coming over ,I need your c**k, Have it ready!” I asked him if he was shocked and he said no. That when he was that age , that’s how he was introduced to sex!

  2. Look, all I’m saying is if you have sons, keep an eye on them, watch out and be an advocate for them. Don’t assume because their males it’s all O.K.

    • Joanna Schroeder says:

      I honestly think that the majority of parents who don’t worry enough about their boys probably don’t realize the reality of how often boys are assaulted. The moment I said it, you could see this one friend of mine just completely have a moment of the whole entire universe changing. This man is an excellent father and wonderful man.

      That’s why we need to keep talking about male survivors, keep getting the stories out, and not be afraid to talk about female perpetrators. As rare as many studies say they may be (some say they are not rare), we know it’s a very real possibility.

    • Agreed. (On a side note I think a major problem about the gender discourse in general is that it often starts off with the presumption that boys/men are doing alright so there is no need to focus on them. Which of course feeds right into the “boys/men don’t talk about that stuff mentality.)

  3. However, in their penultimate scene together, Aimee’s maternal kindness turns oddly predatory.
    Sounds like grooming. Connecting with the child and then using the trust they’ve built up as a doorway to assault/abuse them.

  4. Sixth Sense Mom says:

    Yes its true, it happens to boys. Some 17 years ago reported this incident to police- at the time there were no laws to address unwitnessed reports by a three year old, but today if a 14 year old boy exposes himself to a 3 year old- no witnesses are needed, they will take the kid in and at minimum get them into counseling besides juvenile offender status. What transpired was at the home of a friend, her 14 yr old nephew kept snarky smiling and trying to lead my toddler boy out of my sight while three moms were sitting around the table chatting. At some point I was aggravated and listening to the other mom talking about how her 14 old boy that the girls in his school were all throwing themselves at him and how oral sex was thought to be nothing amongst them. Alarm bells went off in my head. They just left they room out of my sight – again- after I said not to! I left the table and barged upstairs and into the room where the 14 yr old kid, another boy all of 8 and my toddler had gone. I firmly stated “There is no reason for you to be interested so much in hanging around a baby” and took my son out of there fast. My instinct told me that kid was up to no good. I did not like the disrespectful way he conducted him self or the way he looked at me either as thou had zero respect, made my skin crawl. I kept my toddler close to me after that and made excuses to leave early, was not comfortable. When we got home, we were playing in my sons room, he kept chirping a little sing song saying I couldn’t quite understand but then he said it clear and distinctly. So I asked him details on what he was saying and where he had heard it etc. Basically, he was repeating over and over “suck my d**” I was horrified, but kept calm, I knew I had not let him out of my sight up the stairs for more than 2 minutes, but if I had, worse would of happened. I asked him details of who said it, the older one or the younger one, he said not the younger one but the other boy. I called the cops told them what happened, they wanted the 8 year old to witness but his mom would not let detectives interview him because it would tear their family apart. I cut ties with this person right then and there, never set foot near them again, the rest of that family had to deal with the fall out because now they all knew their other nephew was a freaking pedophile in the making and had exposed himself to a baby no less.
    I even spoke to older ones mother, I told her a 3 year old has no reason to lie, her son needed to turn himself in and she needed to get him some counseling fast. Her response was that of incredulity and refusal to talk to detectives too – I stayed calm, said you will have worse to deal with down the road if this is not addressed immediately, I averted a bad situation for my son, but apparently what ever happened to her son, his loss of innocence, the bad influences where ever they are coming from, had already done a number on her child and he needed serious help before something worse happened besides the fact that that would be the last time they ever set eyes on my son and myself again. I could not believe cops wanted the 8 year old to witness or would not press charges! Fast forward, today it does not matter, parent makes the accusation, pervert gets hauled in.
    I share this story because it is not just one genders problem, but both genders problems. Girls are being raised to think they exist for the benefit of mens sexual pleasure. Boys are being raised to think that having sex makes them a man, and that their entitled to having their appendage attended to by what ever means possible – and that to me is the bigger problem- sometime in the 80’s porn was commercially legalized by nasty ass politicians in Washington -Newt Gingrich was one of them (look it up), Nancy Reagan probably knew what was coming down the pike with a “Just Say NO” campaign – an utter failure. Those pigs sold our social fabric down the tubes the same way nazi’s introduced porn & booze into Poland to under mind their social fabric just prior to invading them(look it up)…Folks, history is repeating right here in America, this culture is degrading more so because intellectualism is not being valued, in my case more so because am a woman, but one thing is sure – If women were 50% of congress, codifying pornography and introducing it to kids to putrefy society would not be happening. People need to know that this form of excluding women from decision making roles happens precisely because the perversion agenda is very profitable for war pigs, and they do not care about our children, not one bit. So while I applaud the good men project for what their doing, they also need to realize that supporting womens initiatives is also in their best interest. Today my son is attending college and pretty much a great kid, but it took a lot of work on my part, through harrowing school discrimination too, to get him to where he is today. I paid for private school rather than deal with the public schools wanting to dumb him down, which meant I worked and at work dealt with racial and gender discrimination too! Its a vicious cycle but it stems from the same place- fascist policies that work against women and families, economic eugenics still be used in todays day in age as though people are uneducated enough to recognize it for what it is – out right sexualized harassment designed to limit people from reaching their highest potential. Where is it learned??? Schools?!
    For what its worth, if any one reads this and shakes their head in agreement, lets do all we can to elect women to office. Look, I realize women are sometimes weird, sometimes bad or have sex and are the aggressors, or republicans hate them, or what ever the excuses are, but when women are mothers, their stake in whats best for children, both boys and girls gives them more reason to do what is right than what prior administrations have given us= junk bonds, along with anti-family/women economic polices have translated into 50 shades of porno-bondage like its supposed to be cool – its not! The sickest thing ever put out there but it says a lot about the world we live in!
    As parents, we could be doing a hell of a lot better if we all screamed from the roof tops: we are sick of this shit and we are not going to take it any more – and neither are our children! Ask Johnny Gosch’s mom how long these creeps have been at it ( Look up Franklin cover up) – see if you want your children safe after learning how disgustingly power in washington corrupts. We want the perversion gone – we need women and strong men who value mothers and children in office – its the only way to change the culture, but also pushing for good men to take a stand.

  5. This is a topic that needs to be talked about but this article is lacking in substance a bit; since it only gives two examples, one of which is fictional and the other is apparently non-malicious. One assumes Maria didn’t go on to rape again, and she didn’t go away feeling smug and triumphant either. In fact it’s raising that old spectre that I’ve just tried talking about elsewhere but I haven’t seen it posted yet; the contradictory definitions of rape we have – one that it’s a vicious assault that it’s impossible to do accidentally, and the other that in some cases at least it might be the upshot of working on a false assumption, a misreading of signals etc. – the less comfortable definition in fact, because it leaves us all potentials. Maria was definitely acting on a false assumption and not being vindictive or hateful. If there was an awareness that it was possible for a woman to rape a man Maria’s actions probably wouldn’t have happened. Okay, which I guess justifies the raising of it.

    [although it does raise questions about date rapes of the male perp female victim type – are any of these cases where he has wrongly assumed she wants him to take charge – when Ken Clarke suggested there were serious rapes and less serious rapes there was an outrage – quite rightly in the sense that he used the phrase “date rape” to cover less serious rapes implying that there are no violent all malicious date rapes (I think you’ll find there are, Ken, and they’re hardly less damaging because they came from someone you were trusting, are they? Think about it.) but his faux pas aside, the idea that some rapes are more serious than others is sort of leant credence by the Maria story. If Maria had been a man this would be problematic enough, because it raises that spectre of controversy – the idea that rape can vary in seriousness. The fact she is a woman means that in addition to the one rape that’s described that is fictional, the only other rape breaks with the current model of how we understand rape.

    It’s not exactly building a case.

    I can’t comment on women raping men, but I can talk a bit about sexual harassment of a malicious nature.

    I experienced some repeated sexual harassment when I was at school as a method of bullying from a small group of girls in my year. I can’t remember the age. I was certainly under sixteen, but older than thirteen, I think. Physically it was, I think, only bottom pinching or stroking (but the pinching was not the pinching of a butt cheek but deliberately between the buttocks – so it was rather more sexual than merely teasing). Was there touching over the front of the trousers? I have some vague memory that their might have been. I remember the backside being touched more vividly. They would also mouth sexual come ons to me (“I want you to screw me” was usual) across the classroom or come up and breathily whisper them in my ear. None of it was wanted, none of it was reciprocated and the only motivation was of humiliation – they weren’t genuine offers of sex; and I was aware they weren’t because I knew I was the butt of their joke – they were just ways of getting a reaction out of me. I could quite openly tell them to get lost and it persisted. During breaktimes they would ask me questions on the subject of sex, which I’d be persuaded to answer; again this was for their entertainment – it was funny to get me to talk about sex; one of these times I remember being persuaded, and it’s embarrassing to recall this, and I can’t even recount how this happened, but it is the most profoundly embarrassing thing; I was persuaded to simulate sex with my school bag.

    Really small potatoes compared to other people’s experiences of sexual abuse, I know, but there are a lot of self-esteem and trust issues I have from that relentless campaign of bullying, and there is difficulty talking about it because you think “girls pinching your bum and talking dirty to you, sounds great” – not when you know it’s being done purely for bullying purposes, and not when you can’t stop it either by ignoring it or by telling them to get lost. And I feel nothing but the most painful embarassment about it all; and some anger, particularly towards the ringleader.

    But I’ve told four people about it. The first was a girlfriend back when I was 21 who poo-pooed it as being nothing; the second time I talked about it was probably ten years later, to a different girlfriend who was of the opinion they probably fancied me, and I had to explain “it wasn’t like that. It wasn’t about getting my attention, it was about making a fool of me for their entertainment.”; and it was another ten years before I talked about it again, to two people this time, and it was at least recognised by one that it was a huge self esteem issue, and by another that it was horrible. I don’t know where it fits broadly in the discussion of female sexual abuse towards men though. I don’t know to what extent it counts, I just know it’s humiliating, self-esteem damaging and very difficult to talk about; particularly to talk about and be taken seriously. And partly because it sounds just a little bit like a sexual fantasy.

    In fact I remember around that time there’d been a report in a paper involving a female teacher having sex with two of her pupils. I remember my grandfather reading the story at the kitchen table and with a laugh saying “they must have thought it was Christmas”. A woman abuses young boys and because it sounds rather like a sexual fantasy all that gets said by people is “lucky devils!”

    But it wasn’t that long ago that rape against women had the same problem; I’m thinking perhaps as recently as the 1970s, that the existence of fantasies of rape prevented the reality of rape to be taken seriously, without acknowledging that the difference between a fantasy and a reality is that you are in control of a fantasy and by definition a fantasy cannot be against your will. The reality is rather nastier; and the existence of the fantasy does not excuse, dismiss or diminish the seriousness of the reality. We’ve made that leap of understanding there, we just need people to make the same leap of understanding with sexual abuse from females towards males as well.

    • Joanna Schroeder says:

      Joseph, I hope you’ll read the three other survivor stories I link to in the article for more diversity of the rapes that happen. Four of five examples are real-life stories. Only one is fictionalized.

    • Joanna Schroeder says:

      Also, I’m so sorry you were assaulted like that as a child. It makes me so angry that bullies and sexual predators are able to get away with shit like that, particularly in our schools. I hope you’ve been able to find some healing from that trauma.

      And I agree, it wasn’t long ago that rape against women wasn’t taken seriously at all. This was one of the main objectives of the second-wave feminists and feminists of the 80s. Rape had to look one very certain way for it to be prosecuted and even have charges filed. Things are slowly changing, but it’s still an uphill battle. It’s an uphill battle that we’re only starting when it comes to male survivors, particularly ones victimized by females.

      Hopefully we can all move forward together and stop making excuses for the rapists and stop placing blame and shame upon the survivors.

      • Mr Supertypo says:

        I never really understood why rape against women should be taken seriously, but not rape against men. Why not move beyond that, since day one, and targeting all rape and not just a kind of rape (MVF). Honestly, already as a child I understood this concept why it was so difficult for adults during my childhood? People who dealt with rape in the 80’s new very well that FVM rape was not rare or a fantasy. So why didnt they move to stop all rape rather than privileging one kind? Mystery.

        • Joanna Schroeder says:

          It’s because we have a system in this country where men are in power. We see it all around us, so when we hear that a man was victimized in a way we typically think of women being victimized, I think we (collectively) just disbelieve it.

          It’s the wrong way for the world to work and it must change.

          Regardless of the history of what you’re calling “privileging” of rape, it’s time for everyone to move forward together.

          • I think there’s more to it than that. Look at the sometimes resistence to efforts to bring up male victimization. I’m thinking that this is more than “because men are in power”. Those men don’t operate in the interests of men in general yet they are propped up as representation of all of us.

            I think we (or at least some of us) have gone from collective disbelief to outright denial.

            • Mr Supertypo says:

              the myth about “men in power” need to go. Its a poor excuse, traditionally, men dont help other men, they compete with other men, we dont help each other. Unless they are in the same affiliation like : family, army, party friens etc…

              So its much more likely that men in power will create obstacle for other men, so they can keep the power.

            • Mr Supertypo says:

              ups I send the message to early…

              continuing from before

              Intro line :

              “So its much more likely that men in power will create obstacle for other men, so they can keep the power.”

              [cont]

              Therefore the group in power are not representative, they are much likely adversaries.

            • Joanna Schroeder says:

              Well, when we say “power” I don’t think we mean “all men have power” but rather that the legislature, the presidency, judges, police officers, college professors, college boards of trustees, CEOs and upper management in Fortune 500 companies are by the vast majority men.

              That does NOT mean that men are getting what they need. I feel so strongly about the fact that the very small group of men in power (mostly rich white men who’ve lived very little time in the real world) are harming men, too. Racism in the prison-industrial complex being the first thing that comes to mind but there is SO much more that this small group of men decide that harms both men and women.

              I’m not saying the perception of men being in power (and therefore all men have power) is correct, but I think it influences the way almost everybody operates. And yes, it keeps voices of male survivors quiet. I

            • That does NOT mean that men are getting what they need.
              Then why is what you explain in the first paragraph invoked whenever there is a need to shut down male voices trying to speak up (I’m not expecting a specific answer from you that’s a general question)?

            • Joanna Schroeder says:

              I honestly can’t say why others do that.

              I do it when people say, “Men are NOT in power in this society.” That is when I explain the above. Yes, in general, men are in power. But that doesn’t mean all men have power, or that the needs of men are being met.

              I think people TRULY do not understand that.

            • Mostly_123 says:

              “I honestly can’t say why others do that. I do it when people say, “Men are NOT in power in this society.” That is when I explain the above. Yes, in general, men are in power. But that doesn’t mean all men have power, or that the needs of men are being met.”

              If I may offer a perspective- I think the difference is that some view gender as the characteristic of power (that power itself in society derived from, & contingent upon, one’s gender) and some others view gender as a characteristic of those IN power- Of those who are in power in society (obviously) more share the characteristic of maleness. But does the characteristic itself denote power; is it the source of power? In short, I myself would be first inclined argue ‘no’ because power is diffused along many other axes besides gender: But that’s just my personal axe (or axes) to grind…

            • KC Krupp says:

              Joanna,

              Personally I feel that even saying “in general, men are in power” is still ambiguous because it is not clear that you are saying “men” as a group or as a characteristic (Just as Mostly has said.) In my opinion a much more accurate answer is “in general, those in/who have power are men.”

              This makes a clear distinction that saying the individuals with power follow the trend of being men not that men, as a group, are the ones with power.

            • @Joanna:

              As KC Krupp is saying I think the problem is that “in general, men are in power” is a pretty vague statement because it doesn’t clarify exactly which men are in power. Its not like men are some collective and the ones that are in power are actually representing us as a whole.

              In short guilty by gender association. We share gender with those in power so we are assumed to have power therefore there is no need for men to speak up on their own.

              I do it when people say, “Men are NOT in power in this society.” That is when I explain the above. Yes, in general, men are in power. But that doesn’t mean all men have power, or that the needs of men are being met.
              If you do that under those conditions then yes you are binding us as a collective to say that men are in power. Men are not a collective entity that is “in power”

            • First a suggestion, when you say

              Yes, in general, men are in power.

              when you really mean

              The vast majority of people in power are men

              I’d suggest you actually say the latter more unambiguous statement and avoid all this back and forth,.

              That said; the unspoken implication by stating

              It’s because we have a system in this country where men are in power.

              is that it would change if we had women in power instead. Would it?
              Is it really a gender thing rather than a class thing?

              I think the class aspect outweighs the gender aspect and that the capitalistic/democratic framework/system won’t change by Hillary Clinton being elected in 2016 and a lot more Marissa Mayers heading Fortune 500s companies. That doesn’t mean that I don’t think it would be a positive thing with a more equal representation is government for instance.

          • Mr Supertypo says:

            Yes and when women were raped, the majority used to say, she was looking for it, or she liked it. But today has changed (mostly). Now thanks to the myopia and dishonesty of the people working with rape back then and maybe even today, lots of people have been abused with no help whatsoever and the worst part is they perhaps are not even aware about their abuse. And in parallel abusers are free to hit again.

            “Regardless of the history of what you’re calling “privileging” of rape ”

            With privileged group, I mean, you take care and help only one group, ignoring everybody else. is like having a racial mixed group of children who are hungry, and you (general you) only choose to feed the white children, leaving the others to starve. Thats what I mean.

            Imagine how less difficult would have been if they toke care of all rape, rather than one small narrow definition. Now the public have to unlearn the old way (MvsF) to learn new combinations, and that takes time. Thanks second wave…

            “it’s time for everyone to move forward together.”

            we cannot go forward, before the past mistakes are corrected.

            • Agreed. Honestly sometimes I think there is a desire to sweep the way male victims have been treated under the rug rather than straight acknowledge it. Which is kind of odd that we need to move forward on male victimization but when it comes to female victimization then it becomes fair game to invoke all the historical treatment of women.

          • ogwriter says:

            Joanna
            When you write that the only reason males are not discussed as victims is because men are in power only serves to exacerbates the problem. Why? Because we are disinclined to view people in power as victims.
            Furthermore, classifying all men as powerbrokers or as being the same is categorically wrong, which encourages lazy thinking and for society to define men in the most simplistic manner..Once again intersectionality has failed when it is needed most!

            This unfortunately, is par for the GMP golf course. GMP is a part of the problem and has done a poor job of defining rape and domestic violence for society. All one has to do is read various posts. When GMP acknowledges that rape and domestic violence are NOT male crimes, but happen across gender ,economic, cultural ,racial barriers and sexual orientation, maybe then GMP will have some credibility on this issue. Feminists on GMP think that saying they have empathy is enough, but those are empty words.

            • ogwriter says:

              I have yet to see an ongoing discussion on GMP of lesbians who rape and commit domestic violence. The same goes for transsexual and bisexual women. We are supposed to believe that this is accidental? For real?
              The reason is simple. Admitting to these things would destroy one of the main pillars of feminists thought and logic, forcing them to recalibrate themselves and who they are. They are not ready to do that, nor do they have the courage to do that.

        • KC Krupp says:

          There are some people that genuinely don’t consider a woman assaulting a man as rape. Some of the more arguments I have seen for why sexual assault against a man by a women should not be considered rape include:

          1. The women suffer more argument:
          A woman sexually assaulting a man does not result in penetration which is means that the man does not suffer from physical injury the way a woman does, so since a man does not have to live with the physical scarring and the same “level” of psychological trauma we should not equate the man’s experience to be the same as the woman’s by calling the man’s experience rape.

          2. The history of gender discrimination argument:
          Women have historically been subjected by men, so when a man rapes a woman this is perpetuating the long history of men feeling entitled to women as their property and as objects, while men have not. Because men have never been subjected a woman’s assault on a man does not carry the same connotation of a historical power imbalance it should not be considered equal to the experience of a woman so should not be considered rape.

          And then of course we have Mary Koss’s great “Although consideration of male victims is within the scope of the legal statutes, it is important to restrict the term rape to instances where male victims were penetrated by offenders. It is inappropriate to consider as a rape victim a man who engages in unwanted sexual intercourse with a woman.”

  6. The majority of sexual assault on boys is perpetrated by men.

    • Joanna Schroeder says:

      Yes, I think that is true. But I don’t think that should make us blind to the assaults committed by women and girls, which are very real.

    • I have to ask what exactly was your purpose in pointing that out here?

      No one has said anything about the majority of sexual assault on boys being perpetrated by women.

      But your comment does reflect a rather common sentiment.

      A lot of the conversation on sexual assault starts off with “its something that males do to females”. I think this is pretty problematic because it creates this biased inability to talk about males in any other capacity than as perps when talking about sexual assault.

      When talking about male victims of assault one is already challenging the “…to females” portion of that bias. So its understandable that one would rush in to remind us that most sexual assaults are perpetrated by males in an effort to hold onto that “its something males do….” portion.

      I wonder.

      If this had been an article about female against female assault you have made this same comment?

    • ST: You state that assertion without any support and I have to wonder if it’s based in belief, denial, ignorance or if it really is based on sound statistics. Since you just stated this without any references I am more likely to think that you just reiterated some belief which may or may not be founded in facts or statistics.

      Two national surveys in 2004 and 2007 among 14-17 year old youths in Norway found that 60% of the boys reporting unwanted sexual experiences reported a female perpetrator: Mossige S, Huang L. The prevalence of sexual offences and abuse within a Norwegian youth population Nor J Epidemiol 2010; 20(1):53-62

    • Mr Supertypo says:

      And what is your point? Are you maybe trying to say….suck it up?

    • Mr Supertypo says:

      “The majority of sexual assault on boys is perpetrated by men.”

      and how do you know….

    • “The majority of sexual assault on boys is perpetrated by men.” Let’s be clear and state the obvious, The majority of “reported cases” …. As time has and continues to show, wiomen are right up there with men.

      The adolescents I work with, if I’ve heard it once, I’ve heard it dozens of times … “ I bagged a babe (leaving out the word that is generally used) when I was (fill in the age … but I had one client who was 9 years old). I should note that most of these guys had sex with girls who were at least 17 and older.

      I currently have an 18 year old on the unit who lives with his 32 year old women. His relationship started a couple of years ago. When I read his biopsychosocial before being admitted, I had this picture in my head that this guy was some muscle bound macho looking guy. At admit, you could have blown me over with a feather. He was guy with a small stature, not at all the muscular type that I more often see. To be blunt, he looked very child like.

      MANY young boys have no clue that what’s been done to and with them is illegal. Last week I read an article about a 30+ year old teacher who’s had sex with his “grade school” student. There are lists of countless females who have been perpetrators to young boys but it’s ya seldom see it shown on national TV. Maybe local and sometimes it doesn’t go any further then a local news paper.

      • Joanna Schroeder says:

        There simply are no really good rape statistics that cover men, women, children and perpetrators of all genders. I have asked a ton of experts in the field and so many of them say, “We have so little good data on actual rapes occurring. The best we can do is look at what we have and try to extrapolate what may be happening.”

        But it seems every study of rape has some sort of problem that makes it hard to universalize. To me, knowing this, I have made a choice to believe survivors – whomever they may be, and whomever their perpetrators are and to try to work to help end rape for everyone as best I can.

        If I had to do something official – ie legislation, I’d be troubled by the statistics. For me, though, what matters is just giving equal compassion to any survivor, regardless of circumstance. I just think you can’t really be wrong doing that, you know?

        • There simply are no really good rape statistics that cover men, women, children and perpetrators of all genders. I have asked a ton of experts in the field and so many of them say, “We have so little good data on actual rapes occurring. The best we can do is look at what we have and try to extrapolate what may be happening.”
          But sadly this lack of really good rape statistics doesn’t stop people from quoting whatever numbers just happen to support their side.

  7. Stephen Vial says:

    When are you people going to stop trying to find ways to make Don Draper a sympathetic character? He’s the scum of the earth, and I find it amusing that people try to find excuses for him. Is it because of his good looks. His giant c**k?

    This isn’t a complex character we’re talking about here. He’s a lying, slimeball, AD man!

    Mad Men was all downhill the second that the writers starting giving a damn about him. Characters like Draper have no conscience, even if you concoct a “rape” back story. Sorry, not buying it . . .

    • It’s not about making Don Draper a sympathetic character its about being sympathetic of an event in Draper’s life.

      • Joanna Schroeder says:

        Stephen, have you watched all 6 seasons of Mad Men? Draper certainly has a conscience. But like most people, it’s flawed. And he’s messed up. But he isn’t evil. Pure evil would be boring.

        I’d love to meet any person who is all-good. Who’s never done a bad thing, never made a mistake. Never hurt anyone, was never selfish. So far in my life I’ve never met that person, not even the sweetest people I know.

        “Goodness” is such a broad spectrum. To take Don Draper totally off that spectrum is ridiculous.

    • OirishM says:

      Yes, of course all characters are black and white good/evil panto characters and could never have any kind of complexity at all.

      We should probably treat people that way too, it would make life so much easier.

  8. I have a generic question about Mad Men.

    I don’t follow the show so I’m not entirely sure but how does adult Don Draper treat women?

    • KC Krupp says:

      I don’t follow Mad Men closely, but from what I saw in the first season while the general trend is that he treats women poorly; he makes sexist jokes, cheats on his wife constantly (on occasion with clients,) is callous, cold, and semi-verbally abusive, extremely emotionally distant with his wife (I believe now ex-wife) and his other female partners. He is aloof, haughty, and acts as though he is better than everyone (not just women) around him.

      This would be looking only at the surface as at the same time he demonstrates more empathy towards the women working at the agency than most of the other, younger men. He seems to recognize that women (at least some of them) can be intelligent and capable, giving one woman in the first season an opportunity that most of the other men never would have given her.

      • Okay that’s just what I thought.

        At the risk of sounding like I’m invoking Vampire Symdrome (that an abused child will grow up to be an abuser) I was asking because I wonder what if any influence this rape has/had on his outlook on women as an adult.

        • Joanna Schroeder says:

          Don Draper is a sex addict, and women are both objects and saviors in his life. The women who are his saviors always let him down (because, after all, they are humans and not goddesses) and he needs a new savior.

          We don’t see scenes of Don hate-fucking in an out-of-body experience like we saw in the movie Shame. But it’s profoundly unhappy. In some ways, interestingly, he’s the most respectful of women among their partners. In other ways, they are utterly disposable.

          I think that’s what makes it so realistic. A show about a purely misogynistic man would be intolerable. Instead, we see this immense hurt and pain coming through him, even when he’s doing terrible things and making horrible choices.

          • I think that’s what makes it so realistic. A show about a purely misogynistic man would be intolerable. Instead, we see this immense hurt and pain coming through him, even when he’s doing terrible things and making horrible choices.
            Yes. I think that’s one problem when it comes to talking about men these days. There’s too many buzzwords that seem to serve the purpose of ignoring experiences like this that could shape a person’s outlook on a group of people.

            “He was raised with a sense of entitlement.”, “He’s trying to keep his male privilege.”, “He was raised to believe that women are his playthings” don’t account for stuff like this.

            Let’s say this rape was a turning point on how Draper regards women (again I don’t follow the show). Shouldn’t we also be looking at how not properly handling the emotions of such a crime would affect his outlook on women when he grows up? I think people are too quick to disregard stuff like this as using past traumas to justify current actions (even though that doesn’t seem to be a problem for women).

            • Joanna Schroeder says:

              Yeah, and I don’t even think Don is trying to keep his male privilege. I’m not sure if someone said that or if you heard it elsewhere. I think he’s trying to feed his addiction. We have to remember that when Peggy was a mere secretary, Don saved her. He was the one who helped her when she had a secret baby, he helped her get her career and her life back together. Not because he was going to use her for sex, but because he believed in her and he knew what it was like to have secrets.

              He doesn’t do it perfectly, but he is one of the only people in their company who sees Joan as more than just a body and a secretary. He may be paternalistic toward her, but it’s the best he can do, even at the expense of his company. His relationship with women is complicated, just as most people’s relationships are. He fails, but he tries again to be better. Then he fails again. He fails more than so many others because he’s a sex addict in a time when that wasn’t a real thing.

              I just think the show is so fascinating because we can have these discussions about it. About tough stuff. Including his rape as a teen by a woman.

            • Yeah, and I don’t even think Don is trying to keep his male privilege. I’m not sure if someone said that or if you heard it elsewhere.
              Not about Don specifically but men in general.

              I see something going on with Don Draper here that doesn’t go on with actual living men.

              Examining past experiences, thinking about how they would influence a guy’s current behavior, and taking steps to correct said behavior (or at least keep future men from picking up that same behavior).

              When a man is on trial or being charged with a serious crime bringing up his past is often times considered to be excuses and no one wants to hear about it.

  9. Hank Vandenburgh says:

    I can’t help having a really bad feeling about spreading the discourse of sexual abuse to woman or girl on boy. For one thing, I think it’s a type of moral entrepreneurism, and, for the most part, moral entrepreneurism around issues of sexuality has been destructive. Now of course I admit that very occasionally we have women or girls fellating or inserting their fingers into underage boys, perhaps incestuously. I realize that that indeed could be destructive in the same sense that a man or boy doing it to a girl might be. (Except that I can remember inserting my finger in a girl when we were both pre-puberty, and she’s fine as an adult now. Maybe an adult woman doing it would be more destructive. Who knows?) The point is that I don’t accept as a given that sex play is bad (quite the opposite, in fact.) So I’m tempted to argue for a penetration standard to label abuse, and perhaps an age separation standard as well. When we use a penetration standard or oral standard in analyzing rape, for example, the putative rape rate drops from 30 percent down to s or 6 percent.

    Much of what’s been argued here is, to me, a type of “me-too-ism” that smacks of the way MRAs, with whom I don’t usually agree, often argue. “Women beat up men too.”

    Yes, but far, far less often. I think the main danger from radical feminism is misandry, not the me-too stuff.

    Similar with this stuff, which borders on panopticonic over-vigilance. Let’s back away from “normifying” every corner of sex. I had a make-out session with a 35 year old women when I was 16. Some might call that abuse, but it was great.

    • Joanna Schroeder says:

      Hank, I hear you. I don’t disagree entirely but I want to assure you that I am very far from being an MRA. I’m a 3rd generation feminist but my eye is on men’s issues and equality for everybody.

      I don’t think we need to talk about who does what how often. I think we need to make room for the diversity of assaults that happen. When you get to know male survivors, you learn that their rates of suicide are massive. Their rates of drug abuse are massive. It’s devastating. Then you add in the cultural implications that females can’t, somehow, abuse males, and then you’re adding double the shame upon something that’s already treated with shame.

      Paying attention to men’s issues can have nothing to do with MRAs or the MRM. Though I totally understand why it seems that way, and that puts a LOT of people off talking about men’s issues, we need to charge forward to create a safe space for all survivors. Hopefully we can take men’s issues conversations out of any particular movement and make them legitimate and healthy for both men and women to pursue.

      • Hank Vandenburgh says:

        Joanna, I’m not yet persuaded that a male teen’s sexual encounter with a woman can be abusive/injurious. It’s likely that such encounters could arise in circumstances where other “dysfunctional” things are present in the environment, so injury could be due to other things, even overdetermined.

        • Joanna Schroeder says:

          Listen, certainly not all teen sexual encounters are exploitive, even if the person is somewhat older. It all depends upon the levels of coercion, the age of the child, the power position the adult might be in, etc.

          I know a man who was 13 when his 19 year-old babysitter wanted him to play a “game” and got him to have sex with her. He felt awful and kept the secret until he was 45 years old. He had addiction issues, sexual issues, and intimacy issues. When he had told people, they were like, “She’s hot! You’re so lucky!” but he didn’t feel lucky. He tried to feel lucky, but he felt ashamed and violated.

          My general rule is this: If a survivor doesn’t consider himself/herself a victim, I’m not going to name the situation as such (except with fictionalized cases, or if that survivor asked my opinion). With children, of course, we have to use our best judgement. They call these “Romeo and Juliet” circumstances.

          • Hank Vandenburgh says:

            Good point. I still have some problems with the psychic mechanism with which the abuse is transmitted. Is it because the victim knows it’s against social norms? Does it only seem to be abusive to victims who’ve been raised in repressive families? Is it because the older person has told the victim to keep it a secret? Is it because the younger person knows he should keep it a secret (I did)? Is it “too much, too soon?” I wonder if the abuse here is a social construction– therefore historically and geographically specific. Apparently teens in Samoa were initiated by older people. (Freeman’s opportunistic critique of Margaret Mead aside.)

            • Joanna Schroeder says:

              My feeling is this – assuming that it’s cultural norms that would make him not want sex with a woman assumes that all males want any sex with any woman.

              And that’s complete bullshit.

              I think as far as your suggestions go, certainly there are cases where consensual sex becomes a source of shame for a person because of background. And certainly all of those things are true for certain people.

              But my feeling is that the vast majority of victims simply did not want the sex to occur, and therefore they felt it was abuse. I mean, there are cultures (including some FLDS in this country) wherein sex is expected of young girls with older men. Because those girls say, “Yes, I consent to this. God wants me to have sex with Warren Jeffs, even though I am only 14, therefore I am consenting because it is God’s will,” doesn’t mean that her consent is truly legitimate. It was, in a way, coerced. For others, maybe it wasn’t.

              It certainly isn’t black or white.

            • Hank Vandenburgh says:

              Yes, Jeffs was a pretty disgusting act. Not least because he tried to control women and men in all other ways as well. I read a heartbreaking tale of one of his “wives” where she finally made good her escape after years of being manipulated and imprisoned. Not good.

            • Yeah what Jeffs was terrible.

              I remember reading about the “Lost Boys”, young men (some still in their teens) that were tossed out of the sect so that there would be less competition for wives.

            • Hi Hank

              And old friend of mine grew up in Tunisia (1947).
              He told me it was a costum I that culture that children ( maybe only boys?) learned about sex and lovemaking from older members. So he had inter course when he was 10 years with an old cousin. And I rember his worlds so well:” you people don’t know this about us”.
              Since he as a Muslim living in the was used to remarks about sexually oppressed Muslims, but I felt we were more oppressed …..

              Did he he have symptoms as a victim of sexual abuse?
              Yes he had some issues ,but I did not know the real cause of his nervousness.

            • Typo

              Since he was a Muslim living in the West…..

  10. Hank…. I respectfully disagree with you. I Understand what you’re saying about children “experimenting” but there is a big difference between two same aged little children and an adult with a child/adolescent.

    It’s rather confusing to me that you’re okay with having a make out session with an adult women yet 1.) had that adult women been a man and you a girl, he would be labeled as sexual predator. Had that women been a man, same label and let’s take it a step further, had that women been a priest, you would be in line for the kabillions of dollars the church is paying out.

    Hank, at the age of 35, if you were found making out with a 16 year old girl, and that girl was my daughter, you wouldn’t be feeling very good about things.

    What I’m feeling from your response is the proverbial slippery slope. Inch by inch, standards are being lowered. More things are becoming socially acceptable. Your view, if it were looked at from a gays perspective, NAMBLA would love to have you as a member. Or is that approval of the “make-out” session only applicable to heterosexual relationships?

  11. Hank Vandenburgh says:

    I don’t like being threatened, even hypothetically. Let’s put that aside, though. I assure you that I do conform to the norms and laws of the society we have now, although I don’t always agree with them.

    Your use of personalization here is inappropriate. Hypothetically, though (probably if society weren’t as dangerous as it is now,) I’d argue that statutory rape laws should be sunseted. I’d keep laws against pre puberty child molestation. Many societies don’t have adolescence, and it’s sort of an artificial construct that we do. So for me the question of the desirableness of protecting teens is ideally moot. Not practically in this day and age, but ideally.

    I don’t really know how you got from me with a woman, to an older me with your daughter, to NAMBLA, but you need to be considerably more careful with what you say.

  12. Hank Vandenburgh says:

    I’m always reminded that Theodore Adorno thought that the urge to control others sexually was part of the authoritarian personality. I don’t know if my post above was approved, but I warned Tom not to threaten me, even hypothetically.

  13. tonisvacay says:

    Rape by women and men who anally rape or use objects may not be illegal in some states because some states only define rape as inserting a penis into a vagina. The statues are that specific in some states. Which means that orally or anally raping with penis is legal. Raping with an object is legal. Forcing someone to touch you sexually is legal. And women raping is legal since women don’t have penises. The New York State Assembly just expanded the definition of rape to include all the above. Glad attention is being brought to this topic. People also need to acknowledge that women rape girls as well. Making Daughters Safe Again, http://mdsa-online.org/, is a great resources for survivors of mother daughter sexual abuse. Yes, I can hear the sounds of shock and yes getting raped by your mother is just as bad if not worse than getting raped by your father because people minimize it by saying, “Well, it couldn’t have been that bad since she didn’t have a penis.”

  14. For a comprehensive bibliography of scholary articles on female sex offenders from late 19th century up until now anyone interested can check out this ideology neutral site: http://www.female-offenders.com/bibliography.html

    And yes, they also include papers on female-on-female abuse.

    • Hi Tamen
      You know a lot about these things. Thank you for links!
      May I ask you something?
      Since you know a lot about Norway,then I think you know about the trial against Anders Behring Breivik.
      A book was written after the trial claiming that Breivik had been sexually abused as a small child by his mother. Do you have any more info about that?

      During the trial all facts from his early childhood was keep a secret from us all to protect his mother.
      But now she is dead.

      • Iben,
        I am not privy to any redacted documents from the trial nor have I read the book by Aage Brochgrevink you refer to. But according to reviews of the book there are a couple of lines which implies sexual abuse in the report from the CPS worker/psychologist involved in the 1983 CPS case when Breivik was 4 years old. The report according to the book states:
        “[the mother] confused the boy by alternatingly pushing him away and drwaing him towards herself”,
        “[the mother] projects her primitive and aggressive sexual fantasies on the boy” and that after the divorce the boy often “slept in his mother bed with close bodily contact”. Neighbours reported to the CPS that “the mother didn’t always take care of Anders, and there occasionally were noises from the apartment that sounded like sexual activity while her children were present”.
        The psychologist recommended that Breivik be put in foster care and the CPS supported that care. The mother also supported that he’d be put in foster care. At that point the father tried to obtain custody by filing a legal case. The mother then withdrew her wish that someone else would take custody of Breivik (foster care). It then went to court and the judge overruled the recommendations from the pshychologist, CPS and the wishes of the father and Breivik remained in his mother’s custody. CPS did follow throught with more visitations to the family in 1984 and concluded that the “danger signals” were weakened and the case was closed.

        Can one conclude that Breivik was physically sexually abused by this? Some of the statements from psychologist are ambiguous (was the mother’s aggressive and sexual fantasies acted on upon Breivik or di they manifest as her demonizing him as a sexual being – which at age 4 counts as sexual abuse in my eyes). One probably should consider these statements in ligt of the level of awareness of mother-child incest in those days. What is meant by close bodily contact in the bed? Were the sexual noises from the apartment from the mother having sex with other adults with the children present (a cliched motif from many a crime show trying to explain the origin of the murderer’s misogyni) or were they from the mother having sexual relation with any of her children?

        It seems like noone have contested the existence of Borchgrevink’s source and the quoted (translated by me) lines from the CPS reports, but there has been some differences about his interpretation of them as well as quite a discussion about the author violating Breivik’s mother’s privacy – the book was published prior to her death.

        My sources (in Norwegian):
        http://old.dagogtid.no/nyhet.cfm?nyhetid=2402
        http://www.nrk.no/nyheter/norge/1.7894111

        • Hi Tamen
          You are well informed.

          I read with interest that many psychiatrists this week question his diagnoses,the personalty disorder.
          I am not qualified to do that ,but I tend to agree whit those that see him as psychotic .
          When all this happened I tried to understand him.I read his compendium ( e-book) and followed the trial. He writes a new book now.

  15. I think sexual encounters where one person is not able to give genuinely informed consent are always a problem, regardless of gender. In your case, Hank, I really wouldn’t be all that concerned either. At 16 you probably had a pretty good idea what was going on, and your sense then and now that it wasn’t coercive counts for a lot. To me, that indicates that you probably were consenting in the general sense of that word.

    However, that doesn’t mean that the 35 yr old wasn’t something of a predator. If this sort of behavior was common for her, she would have eventually damaged some young man/boy who wasn’t ready for her and who couldn’t give genuine consent. Even in your case, she certainly put you at emotional risk, and I think we can expect better from a 35 year old.

    The other thing that seldom gets mentioned in these cases and which seems apologist to bring up is the possibility that younger women/girls enjoy their encounters adult men. As in Hanks case, surely there are 16 year olds who would see a liaison with an adult man as pretty cool. I’m not supporting this any more than if the genders are reversed. I’m not even saying it’s exactly equivalent when the younger person is female, due to the cultural perceptions that do form a chunk of rreality. But still, I’ve spoken to a few women who pretty much mirror Hank’s experience and feel no real harm came from it.

    Regarding Hank’s comment re a totalitarian aspect to this, I think that’s a reach. Is getting it on so fundamentally deserved that we can’t say that fully formed adults, as a general rule, should f— people closer to their developmental leve? That’s a pretty mild limit on our freedomes.

  16. Hank Vandenburgh says:

    Thanks for the humanism in your response, Adrian. I’m always a little suspicious of society’s attempts to constrain sexuality. Probably because of the tendency to retreat to Victorianism (very evident since the 1970s.) It’s too easy to heap more “rational” regulations and laws on top of the “sex is dirty” taboo most of us learned as children. I suspect we experience two levels of sexual repression. One (appropriate) warns us off from incest, child molestation, and the like. The other (inappropriate) represses us into the sorts of bureaucratic laborers society would like to see. This second level makes much of heteronormativity, “age-appropriate” sex, strict-monogamy, etc. The sense of shame around this extra repression makes us malleable by authority. These are actually Herbert Marcuse’s ideas, not mine. We should also be suspicious of the tendency for the human services to “case-find.” Expanding the discourse of what’s mentally ill or deviant or criminal gives them more work to do, more money, more promotions, etc. It’s like the generals praying for war, if you’ll excuse the expression.

    • Hank
      Interesting theories you share with us here.
      I have always wondered why so many societies repress female sexuality but after some months here in GMP I see it happens to men as well. On a grand scale. All sorts of insecurities and taboo around sexually ..
      And i see men that in 2013 look for women with a ” lower number ” of sex partners than themselves.
      Virgins or “half-virgins ” are the ideal.
      I appreciate it when men share these feelings with us,but it makes me sad.

  17. Hank Vandenburgh says:

    I’m also a little chary of the way that language critiquing sexual practices has been stepped up. I’m not sure I’d characterize my drunk, silly 35 year-old partner as a “predator.” (If anything, I was the aggressor.) Actually the term “predator” would have been impossible to use in the 1960s, and I’m not sure it should be used now. A friend of mine (female) called another friend (male) a predator because he dates a lot. Whew! I was called a perv and a skeev for lightly flirting with someone on-line. Just complimenting her looks. It was others BTW who used these words. So I think that the language is more or less out of control.

  18. Would you feel the same about your neighbor if you had been 13? 11? Granted, even drunk and silly, she would likely have drawn the line with the 13 or 11 year old you. Which if true, means that she had some sense that you could be too young for her to accept your advances. And speaking of sobriety, do you think anything would have happened had she been sober? If not, why not?

    I think the onus is on the adult to take the less experienced person’s needs into account, and if that means passing up the opportunity, is that really a retreat to Victorian values? Just because sex is repressed, and I agree that it is and that the repression does harm, doesn’t mean that people can’t account for themselves responsibly.

    I have no interest in policing what consenting adults do. I’m pretty cool with what non adults do when there’s no reason to believe that one person has all the power. I think we can draw a line at the point where consent becomes doubtful, though. We don’t have to label the behavior predatory and I agree that sensationalizing things seldom helps or clarifies, but when one person is capable of consent and the other might be, I feel OK suggesting that if there’s a question about one parties consent, the person capable of consent shouldn’t.

  19. Hank Vandenburgh says:

    Yes, in general, I think you’re probably right. From tales of my students and research, I think alcohol, in particular, plays a negative role in sexual relations, and I wish we didn’t turn to it so much. But I think one reason we do is that the sense of repression has increased since the 1960s-1970s, so many people manage their sexuality as “breakthrough” behavior. As the rationalization of sexuality has increased, we often depend on a notion of “I didn’t know what I was doing” to excuse our forays into sexuality. As I alluded to, though, I can remember a time when sexuality was more “straight up” for most people– they did use marijuana, but this was more a pleasant enhancement than an excuse. There wasn’t, I think, as much of a sense of fear and circumspection regarding sexuality. Of course I was in my 20s then, and it was pre-AIDS. I’m now 68, and it’s post-AIDs, so I’ll grant that the culture has changed. But I have the sense that it’s swung way, way too far in the direction of stigmatization, as I believe some of the posts above reflect. This is similar to the way sexuality was in the 1950s. As a group of kids playing “doctor,” we actually had the LA county sheriffs called on us, and had to be interrogated. I think the notion of getting the police involved in child sex play, which one sincere poster cites above (and I have compassion for her – but this is my personal point of view and experience) is outrageous. It’s likely to be extremely momentous and stigmatizing. There are lots of other ways to deal with something like this. I also have problems with Tom B’s notion that boy after boy is presenting with histories of molestation by women. Okay, if it’s true, it’s true. But I (as a psych nurse) worked admitting wards for four years and adolescent programs for two, and never saw anything like this. I haven’t worked in this capacity since 1979, and am a sociologist now, but this strikes me as strange, unless he works in a dedicated program that deals with this.

  20. And with 14 years of being an addictions counselor in a 38 bed residential unit for adolescent boys, ages 13 to 18, I have experienced it. I’ve also experienced children while in their family sessions disclose these incidents for the first time to their family. I’ve also experienced mother claiming the boy is not telling the truth and he’s only looking for attention.

    And not long ago, a mother went so far as to admit that she knew about it and he(the young man) has to deal with it and get over it as SHE did.

    Boy after boy? No, and I didn’t say it was, but way too many of them have experienced it. But these are the ones who see it as something not being right. As you know, as a mandated reporter, when there is potential abuse, it has to be thoroughly investigated and depending on results, I’ve had to file a report. No matter my convictions or views, I have to err on the side of the law.

  21. Hank Vandenburgh says:

    Wow, Tom. I wonder if the rate has changed. Or if we’re just having more people come forward.

    • I’ve been doing a lot of research in the area of men who are survivors of sexual assault and rape by women.

      I initially thought that the seeming increase in the number of women on men sexual assaults and rapes merely appeared to be increasing because women were becoming more sexually aggressive.

      However, long-standing research in the field (e.g. Female Pedophiles, by Michelle Elliott) indicates that women have long been predators of men and boys. It seems that many experts believe that we have suppressed and denied the real rate of sexual assault and rape of women on men and boys, and, the media simply will not report or characterize women who rape men or boys as rapists or sexual criminals.

  22. Tom Brechlin says:

    I things have changed in my industry. Whereas “addictions” so to speak, were typically treated with the traditional 12 Step approach (still shows good results and needs to be incorporated into recovery), treatment centers are now delving further into the individual persons life and life experiences. These experiences, although may not be the core of a persons problem, at the very least has had a profound affect which contributes to the problem.

    For example, the mom that said her son was looking for attention. This poor kids issues go far beyond the incident with the adult female, he has a problem with a mother who doesn’t believe him. So which hurts more, which has/had the most profound adverse affect on the boy?

    Personally I don’t feel that there is an increase in events but simply the type of therapy these kids receive is more inclusive and accommodating.

    Core values with a lot of these families are truly lacking. When you have a14 year old boy explain in his drug history that he started using marijuana with his father at the age of 7, you know something is wrong. When you take a kid home to collect his belongings because he’s going to our recovery home (adolescent equivalent to a halfway house) and the live in uncle sits down next to you and lights up a blunt … yeah, something is wrong.

    So, if these kinds of activities occur where they relate to drug use, what else is really going on? How many skeletons are in the closet?

    Here’s one that may blow you away, sexual abuse of boys in gangs. One guy disclosed that he was molested when he was 11. He was molested by a gang chief. Talk about intimidation?

    Sorry, I rambled …. Hope I answered your question.

  23. This was an interesting read, as I had thought about this issue for a long time, but never thought anyone thought similarly. The scene in “40 Days and 40 Nights” has always been disturbing to me because it contains a scene that, to me, clearly depicts male rape, and yet it was such a popular and “funny” movie. I’m not sure what that says about our society, but it can’t be good. Why do we think that’s okay? Rine’s parallel between the nonchalant response to a scene depicting male rape, and the sure-to-be-raging response against a such a response to a female rape scene was very powerful. I hope that people will continue to take this cause seriously, because if it happens, it’s serious.

  24. Its weird, jezebel post many article about Mad Men, and no single article mention that Don raped by woman. Even in the article about Don Draper is a sex addict. Maybe because the perpetrator is female?

    • ogwriter says:

      John
      I think you are on to something here. For instance, even though an organization like NOW knows that women rape too and that women rape other women, they only go after men. Why? Since they don’t openly discuss these things or encourage the discussion of these issues relative to women, we can only speculate as to the reasons.
      Clearly, they stand to lose quite a bit of credibility and with it funding and membership if they do. One must understand that the rape of women by men has been a cornerstone of feminism and used to great effect as a tool raise to money and promote their cause. Furthermore, once the general population digest this information-that women rape men,boys and other women-the house of cards they have built may come tumbling down around their well-heeled stilettos. Their false gospel about rape AND domestic violence has penetrated and influenced almost every institution in America. They have much to loose.

    • Not weird, normal and deliberate.

      Look how this site tried to gloss over the fact that most guards that rape prisoners are female, for another example.

      http://feministing.com/2013/06/12/study-shows-an-alarming-rate-of-young-inmates-are-sexually-assaulted/

      or look at the policies for rape data collection being deliberately made to omit female perpetration, for another.

      http://www.genderratic.com/p/2551/male-privilege-defining-male-victims-out-of-existence/

  25. Absolutely important to start saying this stuff out loud, and it’s courageous of you to go against the grain of what society wants you to think.

    Not all childhood rape victims are girls. Not all child rapists are men. It’s really that simple and should be totally obvious.

    We could argue endlessly about the percentages or how commonly each gender falls into each category. Let’s say for the sake of argument that the figure for male victims of women rapists is really “low,” like 1%. Well, 1% of American men and boys is over 1-2 MILLION people.

    Not sure what to make of this, but I noticed in your article that the parents at the barbeque were already talking about girls needed to be protected from predators. That seemed to be normal conversation. But when you brought up boys being victimized you were self-conscious about being a downer? I hope there comes a day when it’s equally depressing and equally acceptable and/or equally taboo to talk about male and female victims.

  26. Can I ask the OP, after years of being given the information and stats by various regulars here, how is it a TV show rather than the regulars was the catalyst for an article?

  27. http://www.nytimes.com/2013/06/24/us/in-debate-over-military-sexual-assault-men-are-overlooked-victims.html?pagewanted=all&_r=0

    Thank you for telling your story. We must stay strong so other brothers can tell their story.

    Richard

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