i don’t rape
or Aww C’mon
I don’t rape. And I’m also not a racist. In fact, when I think about it, it’s odd to my mind that things like rape and discrimination actually exist or ever existed. Call me an out of touch, hippie-raised, Third Culture Adult…
I recently wrote an article about the Steubenville rape culture, which garnered me all sorts of hate and love mail from both friends and strangers. While I definitely think that some perspective is needed and that exaggeration can water down any message (see the wildly exaggerated parables and metaphors of Jesus Christ), while later reading all the different definitions of rape and the confabulations of the consent culture, it occurred to me that I actually agree with a lot of them.
Rape may be all about dark alleys and dark strangers, connotation-ally, and all about penetration, legally, but I stand with these gals that to me too, rape is any sexual act that you have not freely agreed to.
Tricking or coercing someone into anything sexual is, if not strictly, legally rape, then at least definitely rapey. AboutDateRape defines date rape as, among other things, using “emotional blackmail or alcohol…to force or trick you” into sexual acts.
‘Baby It’s Cold Outside’ is totally a date rape anthem.
Drinking is a popular form of rapey coercion. While I definitely agree that the beginning stages of drinking lower your inhibitions and often allow you to be a better you, there is usually a fine line between those and the later, don’t-remember-it-the-next-day stages.
Unless she is completely passed out, it can be hard to tell if she is too drunk to give consent. It’s always better to leave a safe margin on the side of “she wasn’t too drunk” rather than on the side of “she was.”
I’m not saying that I haven’t had a few slip ups where we both woke up the next day barely remembering anything. And I’m not saying it can never be fun to get drunk and fuck on purpose and with previous consent. But as a general rule, I definitely prefer both of us as conscious as possible when drinking in each other’s bodies.
Another popular form of rapey coercion is supplication or persuasion.
One night in a beach town in Mexico, I was in a taxi on the way to her apartment after an evening of raucous clubbing. Peering out from the veil of her sun-bleached hair, frantic lips, and gripping legs wrapped around me, I gradually became aware that there were two other people in the back of the cab with us.
And one of them was being raped.
Not strictly speaking or in any legal sense. She was the best friend of the girl I was with, and he was my boss. The conversation went something like this.
Him: Baby, you’re so beautiful, come on, let’s just have some drinks at your apartment.
Him: But your smile is so beautiful; has anyone ever told you you have perfect lips? Come on, let’s just go back to your place and see what happens.
Her: No, get off of…
Him: MUA! -See, you kissed me? I know you want it.
Her: Don’t do that!
Him: But come on! Life is so short, and right now it’s just me and you, and you’re such a smart girl, and you’ve completely conquered my mind and…
Coercion may not be rape but it’s definitely rapey.
A great woman once said:
“Don’t have sex with someone who is not unambiguously, enthusiastically, and continually consenting. Don’t have sex with someone who says ‘I guess so’ or ‘okay, fine’ (unless they are grinning lasciviously as they say this). Don’t convince someone to have sex. If they don’t want you, really want you from the bottom of their heart and/or groin, respect that.”
I don’t know why she double-spaces her sentences, but what’s important here is the message between those weird double-spaces.
Someone once told me that I’m less ‘sexual’ than other guys because I don’t push. I’ll make sure it is clear in your mind the wonderful, filthy things I want to do to you, and you will never have any doubts about the kind of person I am and what that person wants from the kind of person you are (besides your great friendship and ingenious conversation). But I won’t cajole you. I won’t persuade you. And I won’t try to convince you.
You need to make up your own mind about that. If you can’t decide for yourself, it’s usually because you’re either somehow not mature enough or somehow misguidedly religious and torn between your spiritual and your sensual beings because of a misunderstanding about how those beings are actually one and the same.
Either way, when you don’t know what you want, it usually bleeds into your sexuality and can make for a very confusing, unsatisfying experience for both of us. I prefer to stay away. I’ve heard of the “have intercourse or you’re a failure” mindset, but I don’t buy into it. No sex is better than bad sex.