Rape is a horrific crime that stays with the victim, we all know this.The introductory disclaimer is proven false by the questions which follow. This disclaimer like many others is there solely to remove all responsibility for the dismissiveness of the questions from the person giving the disclaimer. This is so common that whenever I read a disclaimer I'm shocked when the disclaimer isn't proven false by the words which follow.
My question is, when do you stop blaming the rapist for the emotional disturbances caused by the event?
Say a woman is raped at the age of 18. If she’s still having emotional problems at the age of 70, is it OK to blame her problems on the rapist from 52 years ago?
At what point does the "victim card" expire? Or does getting raped once entitle you to a lifetime scapegoat for all your problems?
Great answers everyone, thank you!
These are tainted questions and not genuine questions about emotional healing from sexual violence. They might as well be questions asking when the person asking the questions is no longer considered a complete jerk for dismissing the impact of rape and considering the remaining impact as if were self-inflicted.
Unfortunately this dismissive phrasing is so common that many people accept it as normal as several responders to these questions have done. And of course there is a man who uses these questions to dismiss many rapes as nothing more than regret.
Not surprisingly some rape survivors use their own lack of emotional trauma to dismiss more severe emotional trauma of other survivors. Their premise falsely assumes that rape has a generic impact. This premise also makes the false assumption that if someone doesn't experience trauma in the moment that there will never again be an emotional impact from rape.
When I read questions like these I always wonder why the person asking these questions is seeking an expiration date for rapists' responsibility. If the crime were stabbing or poisoning or shooting someone I doubt people would be use dismissive terms like "victim card" when evaluating the emotional impact of those violent crimes.
If everyone truly knows that rape is always a horrific crime that stays with the victim then the answer to how long the rapist is to blame is a given. The rapist will be forever to blame for the disturbances caused by the rape. If everyone knows that rape is horrific then nobody would minimize rape into a description as bland as "the event."
If there is a question about someone being to blame for the emotional impact of rape other than the rapist then the list of those to be considered must expand far beyond the rape survivors. It must include all those who learn about a rape. Did they ease the survivor's emotional trauma or add to it? And what about the police if the rape was reported? And the prosecutors?
Lastly, how about anonymous people on the internet? Do their words related to rape increase or decrease the emotional harm from that original rape? Are they helping survivors or are they doing follow up emotional harm which would make rapists smile?
Labels: Violence Against Women