oh women. such bitches

this Modern Love essay freaked me out. 

this is the section that made me go What.The.Fuck.

But to my enduring wonder, I have never felt the same anxiety about men. To be sure, their violence and misogynistic rituals stole my innocence and triggered the demons of shame and repression that shackle me still.

Yet their actions, however crude and criminal, ultimately hurt me far less than the judgments, connivance and betrayal of women. The men in my drama acknowledged wrongdoing, apologized, showed remorse. Punishment, however minor, was meted out. They did not blame me, and they shouldn’t have. But the women shouldn’t have, either, and they did.

so the fellow that raped her and his brothers who cheered, apologized, showed remorse, and made it all better.  those bitch sisters kicked her out of her sorority. 
and being kicked out of the sorority is the most traumatic experience?

I am speechless

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32 thoughts on “oh women. such bitches

  1. Forgiving someone who did something heinous, even if they acknowledge it and ask for it, pisses me off — of course no one ever asked forgiveness in my world. Maybe I'll be of a different opinion if they ever do. When people to whom you turned for help & support blame you for what was done to you — it f's with your mind on top of what you already have to deal with. IMO it's not worse but it sure as hell hurt me additionally.

  2. Hmmmm…I read the whole thing. I see what you're saying but I also TOTALLY understand what she means by the ridicule she received from other women hurting worse than the actual rape itself. If she were conscious during the rape, I think it would be VERY different. Regardless, this woman is still – to this day – a rape victim, not a rape survivor. If she can't see past the lack of support she got from these venomous bitches and has continued to apply that logic to women everywhere then she hasn't gotten past the incident itself. This is very, very sad to me. Thanks for sharing it!

  3. She ought to quit blaming the past and get on with her life, whatever it takes, whatever the problem. At least maybe knowing the beginning of her self-loathing is a start.

  4. It's disturbing, but I can almost understand it. Having your own people reject you and blame you when they should understand and support you through your ordeal is devastating on top of the actual assault. I don't know that I could forgive the men that easily, but knowing that they are subhuman anyway makes it easier to 'understand' their actions than your so-called sisters, when this could have been any one of them in your position. It adds insult to injury and sometimes that hurts more. I don't know. (FTR I didn't read the whole article yet…)

  5. Dora, I think it's a case of this woman still applying "the same logic" to herself.Being hounded like that *is* brutal, no question. (I've had a rather similar experience as an adult, though certainly not due to a rape or similar circumstances.)I think maybe writing this article was an attempt at exorcism, so to speak, and I hope she gets the help she needs. As long as she sees herself as powerless, these people (men and women) and their attitudes will continue to rule her. If she can start facing this (preferably with the help of a good counselor, supportive spouse + friends), she has a lot of room for recovery. The hurts inflicted on her will never go away – there will be scars – but they can heal past the "open wound" stage she's obviously still in. I hope she uses the same courage she showed in writing this piece to move forward from the rape and its aftermath.

  6. Also, is PTSD one of the things she's facing? Obviously, there's no way for us to know, but I wouldn't be surprised if that was the case.

  7. That's a good observation, it could very likely be a form of PTSD…and it kind of reminds me of folks who've been kidnapped or held hostage that become sympathetic to their captors, specifically, in regards to her being so willing to forgive those that violated her and took part in that violation. What a flipping nitemare.I hope she gets the help she needs, too. I think writing this piece was definitely the first step.

  8. I kind of get it.The rejection of her sorority sisters no doubt fueled the inevitable self doubts that any girl faces post-abuse. Did she "ask for" it? Did she contribute? Did she on some level WANT to be abused? So the Sorority's neglect and judgment would have had enormous repercussions that the abuse alone wouldn't have. As to which hurt worse- she says that she never really saw her abuse as a criminal act, so she never emotionally coped with it the way a rape victim should. I seriously suspect that this detachment in her mind is a form of avoidance. Poor thing has a lot of healing to do.

  9. I think it's VERY likely that her entire support system at the time of the rape was in that sorority house. Abusive speech and bullying on this order – a deep, deep betrayal of trust – can cause a hell of a lot of emotional havoc.In some ways, the writer would have been able to handle their rejection better if they'd simply hit her. I'm not kidding – words and attitudes can hurt far worse than physical blows.and I do think writing this piece was a significant step. I also have no doubts that there are a lot of people (men, women and children) in the same boat. Emotional abuse is really downplayed, even in clinical circles. There are some things that you just can't "get over" without a lot of help, and between the assualt and her peers' reactions, the writer REALLy got worked over. Also, if there;s a campus culture where "ledge parties" are accepted – sheesh!!! (i.e., very debased standards of behavior.)

  10. I seriously suspect that this detachment….The detachment was a huge red flag for me, too.

  11. Also, if there;s a campus culture where "ledge parties" are accepted – sheesh!!! (i.e., very debased standards of behavior.)You really really really do NOT want to know. "Ledge parties" have become a multi-million dollar porn industry, sadly. With the popularity of "girls gone wild", the availability of drugs such as GHB and the www of porn out there the whole concept has become very easy to make a quick buck on. And the people making the bucks are NOT frat boys, rather, men who invite themselves to frat parties – they may dole a small reward out to the hosts of the parties, tho. They also advertise for frats to invite them and crash various other campus gatherings as well. They target large universities because it's easier to go under the radar. They are shameless – they show their faces and the faces of students in the videos – both male and female. I'm sure if any consent forms are involved, all signatures look like chicken scratch.

  12. I'm not surprised, Dora – if anything, my reaction is the opposite.Still, this is the kind of thing I try to avoid finding out about, for my own peace of mind. And things have changed radically (*not* all for the good) since I was in college, back in the 70s. But then, a lot of popular entertainment has "entertained" by debasing women (and men) sexually, over the past 25+ years, at least. That wasn't true prior to the advent of really, really raw rap and some of Madonna's less savory pr ploys and videos. (Which is a whole other story, and post.)Back in D.C., when young women started wearing pendants and necklaces that spelled out "bitch" or "ho," I just wanted to cry – for them, because they were and are worth so much more than that. My feelings haven't changed.And FWIW, some of my hs and college friends had been preyed on by older men (friends of both sexes, that is). I even met some of their "friends," so I'm much more aware of sexual predators than I'd like to be. At the time, I had no clue that they were being abused; the relationships seemed both exciting (and dangerous) to them, and to me, observing them from the outside. Equally, I didn't want ANY involvement in that kind of thing.

  13. So basically she was desperate to be accepted by a group of vacuous bitches and then she came to hate them – not because they were vacuous bitches but because she wasn't accepted as a vacuous bitch.But the boys were okay because while, yeah, they facilitated her rape, they claimed they were sorry afterwards. Hey, the bitch at Gymboree apologised too (and for something that wasn't even a criminal offense) but apparently that doesn't count because she never accepted the author as a fellow vacuous bitch.I think I'm seeing her problem here. Hey, sweetie, I accept that you are a complete vacuous bitch. Feel the love!

  14. If you were ostracized and shamed for something, I think you would feel quite differently about this woman and her article. Having had some personal experience of both – though for different reasons than the writer – all I can say is that I hope nothing of the kind ever happens to you, and I mean that sincerely. It can be deeply traumatic.

  15. She never refers to it as rape though. Never even discusses much detail about the whole thing. She downplays the rape and instead shows us something she regards as worse, ultimate betrayal by her surrogate sisters, her family. I don't quite know how to take her story, but I do believe she needs some counseling help. There are things she is trying to cover up, unsuccessfully as she found out.
    This stirs another story I have heard. An industrial accidnet left a guy burned over 90 percent of his body. Upon arrival at the hospital, one of the nurses made a comment about how nice it was that he had worn thick gloves, so his hands were saved. Another nurse, horrified at the extent of damage asked how that could possibly be a good thing? The first nurse replied that since that skin was good, they were able to attach an IV there to administer pain medication to make his last hours easier. If he hadn't had those gloves on, he would have been in excruciating pain. He died shortly after.
    How are these similar? It's all in perspective. Some people are outraged about the rape and can fathom nothing worse. Yet, this woman is more upset over the Sorority drama and that goes against that thinking. My thoughts are like that of Dora's, she is still the rape victim and definitely needs counseling help to deal with that.

  16. It was a huge betrayal; a double whammy. (Check some of the previous comments for discussion…)

  17. Yet, she still doesn't really acknowledge what happened, even downplays it as, "It must have been pretty boring" kind of description. Huh?

  18. Thank you for not wishing ostracism on me, e2c. I know it's a traumatic thing to go through at the time because I have already been there, which is probably why I'm not feeling that sympathetic to the writer. The old 'I got over it so why can't you' attitude. It was while I was living on residence in a Catholic dormitory during my first year of uni. As the only person who was both non-Catholic and went to a state school I was shunned, bitched about and reviled (by both boys and girls). Even to the point where they were spreading rumours that I was a devil-worshiper casting curses on other people within the college. The thing is I saw them for the spiteful little pricks they were, moved to another college and got on with my life. They even tried to spread rumours to the residential halls I moved to through mutual friends. I put it down to petty people doing petty things. I didn't blame all Catholics for their actions. I didn't blame all private school kids. Yes it was traumatic at the time, but the lesson I walked away with was not to put your self-worth in the hands of people who don't deserve that responsbility. It honestly seems to me like she's still craving acceptance by a group of people who simply aren't worth it.On the other hand I have friends who are survivors of rape. THAT is an experience that scars you forever. I have complete sympathy for her for that trauma. I'm not feeling so sympathetic about how eviction from a sorority can change your life.Maybe she's transferring the emotions resulting from the trauma of the rape to the pain she felt while being shunned by her sorority. She doesn't want to blame the boys, so she'll blame the girls for both crimes. Whatever her reasoning, she definitely needs counselling.

  19. because the article isn't about the rape; it's about emotional abuse in the wake of the rape. (though her detachment really troubles me,,, see previous comments above.)

  20. Maybe she's transferring the emotions resulting from the trauma of the rape to the pain she felt while being shunned by her sorority.Bingo. Also look at the graph where she talks about shame. She's struggling with a very hellacious burden. And people's reactions to trauma can vary wildly. (As with grief; nobody grieves in the same way, though the emotions inolved are common to all.)She *is* writing about the whole trauma here, though I believe it's only part of the story…. and thanks muchly for your reply – makes sense to me on all kinds of levels, EWQ.

  21. Yeah, normally I hate it when people have the attitude of 'this is how I would deal with it so you're stupid if you didn't do the same' so I feel a bit guilty I was angry at her for not simply getting over it. Maybe I'm angry at her for remaining a victim because of my own anger at myself for being a victim at the time. So I'm directing my left-over anger at her rather than the people who shunned her (or me for that matter). Whoah. I came here to slam a writer and recommend she gets counselling and instead I've come to realise my own faults and get a little counselling of my own. Oh dear. I'm off to have a bit of a cry now.

  22. This woman needs a WHOLE lot of counseling, and some friends who aren't vacuous bitches. She's definitely PTSD'ed and Stockholm Syndromed.Her displacement of the rape trauma is very disturbing. Residental counseling for a while is probably advised — a safe, nurturing environment.

  23. You're human, and so am I. And I've reacted the same way to articles (and people), too, so I kinda know where you're coming from. So… no worries here. And take care, OK?

  24. Well, but… what the sorority sisters did is really quite traumatic, and I don't think its impact should be underestimated.Man, I have *got* to get outta this thread – I'm mos def no a pro, and that article hit some nerves for me, as it did for Evil Wombat Queen.

  25. BTW, this article is hitting a lot of nerves – see Viva La Feminista's post on it, for example. (Very thoughtful consideration of it all, from her own POV.)

  26. Wow, is right, Suga.At first I had the instant thought that this woman needs to wake up and realize that airhead bitches like those in the sorority aren't worth worrying about. But, then, reading all the comments and thoughts, it made me look at more angles and realize there were more levels to the story.Great post, mariser. (and I'm with e2c, there's a lot of "life" out there that I prefer not to allow myself to be aware of….much too disturbing)!!!

  27. Urgh – poor woman – what a terrible, horrific string of events. – I can't even think about rape without shuddering and feeling sick. What really pisses me off is how low the prison terms are for the bastard rapists – it should carry a life sentence in my opinion (and possibly castration too).

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