My immediate reaction to reading Chrissie Hynde’s recent comments about rape and sexual assault, were anger.
This is the most typical & toxic kind of victim blaming/shaming out there, and sadly it is beliefs held by too many. When it comes from a woman, I cannot help but feel even more outraged and disgusted. I hate victim blaming/shaming.
But, I do realise Chrissie Hynde needs counselling and psychological help. She is blaming herself for something that was never her fault, blame, shame or responsibility. It was 100% the responsibility of the man who abused her. I realise there may be many reasons she is blaming herself, as I have done in the past. I do feel so sorry for her, and why she feels the need to blame herself for the highly abusive choices an abuser made.
If I were a decent man, I would be highly offended by this notion that men have no self control, no moral compass and no capacity to not be rapists when women are drunk, wearing certain clothing etc.
I agree with this… “The idea that sexual assault is a natural occurrence, ready to engulf passing women in its flames, is one as damaging and insulting to women as it is to men. This persistent belief that men are naturally inclined towards rape, and that women have to dress or act or behave accordingly because otherwise it’ll just end up happening, is one that prevents so many assaults from being reported or prosecuted every year. Rape is not a natural disaster, and men are not prowling animal…s whose natural instincts would be kept under control if only women would just stop putting on fishnets or getting drunk or looking so damn sexy all the time. However, it has consistently been found in psychological studies that rapists do believe all men rape – which helps them to justify their actions to themselves.”
I realise Chrissie Hynde has deep psychological issues, but she needs to not be projecting her issues, to the rest of society and projecting blame and shame to victims of sexual abuse/assault/rape.
I am truly over victim blaming/shaming.
It has also brought to the surface again, how situations that occurred in my 20’s, where men did not stop when I wanted them to, really hurt me and basically it was rape. That I blamed myself for. I blamed myself, and never said anything, due to this wrong self shaming belief, that what I wore, how I danced etc, drinking too much alcohol, putting myself in unsafe situations, made it my fault. I realise now, it was not my fault. The men made choices to not stop, not have self control. Men should stop, when you want them to stop. If they don’t, it’s rape.
I also realise, at that time this felt in some way normal. Because I had been abused so severely during the first 20 years of my life, that what these men did in my 20’s, was not unusual for me, or a big deal really, considering what I had already endured.
It makes me really sad to realise, this is my life I am writing about and how much abuse I have endured.
There are many psychological reasons why victims blame themselves. Sometimes, it is purely the easiest way to cope, because dealing with the truth and reality, is harder. As I am increasingly seeing in so many ways.