Can we stop perpetuating the idea that all rapists are mentally ill? Not only does it add fuel to the myth that mentally ill people are dangerous and scary, it also implies that we can’t hold rapists responsible for their actions. Rape is a premeditated act of violence and rapists know exactly what they’re doing.
""Excuse me," she asked. "Can I buy you a coffee?"
It was a nice surprise. Most people don’t buy me cups of coffee, and I was just sitting at the Starbucks trying to plot my novel. So it was kind of charming, to have a cute girl offer to buy me a free drink. I told her sure. She brought me a nice iced chai, and sat down next to me, and then asked, “So have you heard about Jesus?”
Now, as it turns out, I’m a Christian, so I’m not opposed to Jesus -– but it was a little disappointing to realize this drink wasn’t done out of niceness, but as a sort of recruiting tool. Maybe I’d have been into a religious discussion if she’d said, “Hey, let’s have a philosophical talk,” but as it was, I felt a little betrayed. So I said that I wasn’t interested, as politely as I could (for I was sipping a delicious drink), and returned to my plotting.
The next day, another girl: “Hey, can I buy you a coffee?”
This time, I was trying to work out a difficult programming solution in my mind, and she asked me at exactly the right moment to have all of my thoughts collapse like a house of cards. “Are you just going to ask me about Jesus?”
”Oh, no,” she said, reassuring me. “It’s just that I think you’re cute.” And she was kind of pretty.
"…all right," I said, guardedly. She bought the coffee. Sat down at my table.
”But if you were wondering about Jesus…” she said earnestly, and I ejected her from my table. I kept the drink, though. It seemed cruel, but she had been stupid enough to buy it for me even though I didn’t want it.
Over the next week, it just got worse. Two or three times a day I’d be deep in thought, trying to focus on this tangled plotting that I needed to resolve, and some woman would tap me on the shoulder to offer me a cup of coffee. I couldn’t concentrate, because sometimes they were very insistent: “You sure you don’t want a coffee, sweetie?” they’d ask, sometimes lurking over me after I’d refused them, just in case I changed my mind. Sometimes they just bought the coffee for me anyway, without even asking me if I wanted it, plopping themselves across the table from me and yammering on about being saved.
It was affecting my concentration. I started to tense up at the Starbucks, waiting for the next Jesus freak’s interruption. If it was a regular thing, like an hourly interruption, then maybe I could have worked around it, but it was erratic. Some days, I’d have four or five at once, other days I’d be blissedly free of interruption. But I had to be continually braced for the next hand on my shoulder, knowing that no matter what I was doing they’d be bursting into my personal space. I wrote less, my programs were buggier.
My friends couldn’t understand my upset. “Dude,” they told me. “You never have to pay for coffee again in your life! You’ve got it made! Do you know how much money you’re saving?”
”But I don’t want to talk to these people,” I said.
”You’ve talked about God with us before,” they replied. “Sometimes, we’ll stay up until two, three in the morning discussing the nature of heaven and hell. You dig philosophy, Ferrett. If you like talking about that shit with us, then why not with them?”
”Because they’re just one-note and don’t really care what I have to say,” I said.
”Just try ‘em, man. Some of them are cute. Maybe some of them actually want to date you!”
”I guess,” I said. “But how do I know which ones are genuine without having to talk to a bunch of phonies?”
Eventually, it got to the point where I started bringing friends with me for cover, so I wouldn’t get interrupted. That didn’t work, either –- while it helped, the more aggressive proselytizers would interrupt me in mid-sentence to ask me if I wanted a drink. Suddenly, the Starbucks wasn’t fun anymore -– it wasn’t a place to hang out, but a place where I’d just constantly be bugged by attention I didn’t want. And the guys who weren’t getting free drinks were calling me stuck-up, jealous that I was getting all these free drinks and not even wanting them.
So I stopped going.
Okay. Clearly, that didn’t happen. But I’m trying to prove a point here.
One of the things that guys don’t get is why women don’t like to be hit on. As a guy, when you get hit on, even if it’s a clumsy attempt, it’s generally a very rare and remarkable event –- it puts a spring in your step, even if you’re not particularly attracted to the woman, because as an average-looking guy, scarcity of compliments is the norm. So if a girl catcalls you and goes, “Nice butt!” and appears to be serious, there’s often this sort of strange pride. Hey, that doesn’t happen often, she must really be into me.
So a lot of guys have this unspoken attitude of, “I wish I’d be harassed.” And they don’t get why women are so angry when hey, I was just trying to be nice, why you gotta be so mean?
Thing is, when it’s not scarce, then even the nicest act starts to get annoying. Because you don’t get to control when people are quote-unquote “nice” to you, and it happens all the time, and you know there’s always a hidden cost behind it. You start to question people’s niceness, because they’re not doing it to be kind, they’re doing it because they want something from you. And maybe, yes, that’s something you like to give to certain people, but definitely not to everyone, and almost certainly not to the kind of guy who’s certain you’re going to give it to him if he just bugs you enough.
Harassment isn’t once. Harassment comes from a lifetime of dealing with people constantly doing things to you, whether you wanted them or not, at random intervals. You learn not to trust people. And what might have been pleasant, once, as an isolated incident, starts to feel pretty oppressive when it’s something you deal with on a weekly basis. It changes you, and then guys call you bitchy when you don’t feel like playing along and pretending this is just about the coffee.
But I think most of ‘em would feel the same were the tables turned. So please. Think about what you’re spouting.”
SO. FUCKING. IMPORTANT.
Learning to speak to children in a constructive, positively reinforcing, non-abusive way (which was hard to unlearn due to my own abuse) is one of the most important things i have ever learned to do. It’s also dramatically changed how i speak with adults.
“Can you give me more information on what being asexual means?”-Question submitted by Anonymous and answered by Kelli Miller as a part of Everyone Is Gay: Second Opinions—Kelli Says:Being asexual means I don’t experience sexual attraction. As far as what that means for me, I once told my dad that I could go my entire life without having sex and be a perfectly happy human being. An awkward conversation to have with my dad, certainly, but it was telling of how a lot of people feel, as his answer was “That’s not right.” I don’t believe him, though, because there’s nothing wrong with me! Some people want sex, and some don’t. I just would have an easier time than most going without it.This brings an interesting dynamic to relationships. Contrary to some myths, asexuals do have friends and some do get into romantic relationships, myself included. There are romantic orientations that we use to describe ourselves, and I consider myself homo-romantic. In short, I dig other girls. A lot. I get crushes all the time. Dating itself isn’t any more difficult for me than it can be for most other people who are a little on the neurotic side. I haven’t done an extensive amount of it, but I’ve had partners in the past. Admittedly, it is intimidating on the basis of being asexual, but relationships are built on trust and good communication, and I’ve managed to do well for myself. It turns out that most of the time spent with a partner doesn’t involve sex, so it works out for me, as I’m rather neutral towards sex and am willing to reach a compromise. My last romantic relationship involved some compromise, though not too much. I’m not averse to sex and consider it enjoyable and bonding. Asexuals can have sex; they just don’t experience the sexual attraction.Some don’t paint a flattering picture of us. Being asexual, I’m invisible to a decent portion of the population. If we’re not invisible, then some will go on to say that we don’t exist or worse. That’s when the hurtful comments start coming in. We’re considered broken, sometimes inhuman. Someone I knew insisted I was an alien or a robot before he eventually told me that there was likely some Darwinian reason for why I’m asexual— I obviously have something so wrong with me that I’m not supposed to procreate. I was told by some people that I should check my hormones, and that is something that happens very often to those in the asexual community. As it stands, I have had my hormones checked and they are fine, thank you very much. People are downright rude, sometimes. I’ve been asked if I masturbate, which is something that happens frequently to other asexuals. I hate seeing some doctors, because I’ll be asked about my sexuality. A doctor once asked me if I was sure I wasn’t just gay, as I’m a male-bodied person who might have been in denial about liking men. Most accept it eventually, but continue to ask if I still consider myself asexual at other visits. We’re a rather marginalized group.I do find people who accept me and my identity without question in my local LGBT+ community. There’s an asexual pride flag hanging in my school’s LGBT center, and I’ve found a community outside the initial asexual community I got into. I consider myself queer, but not all asexuals think or feel the same way. That identity might have more to do with my gender and the relationships I engage in, but it’s different for everyone. That’s a separate part of my being, though, so I’ll hold off. I will say that one of the more entertaining things to come out of a relationship, given my being asexual, was becoming cuddle buddies with a friend and telling her she was practically a “friend with benefits” as far as I was concerned. That’s a good taste of what I think it means to be asexual. Mileage may vary.
Reblogging because this is important.
Any one else terrified that this has more notes than almost anything else in the asexual tag, and most of them are supporting this statement.
Can we possibly get more notes on this than they did because this is one of the highest notes ive seen on the tags and it shows ace people a really depressing idea that there will always be more ignorant and intolerant people than allies and that would’ve been so damaging to me when first realizing I was ace.
It’s also not scientifically sound. They’re speaking here of asexual reproduction. That’s not something we’ve claimed to be able to do. By saying we’re asexual, we’re not referring to our genetic/biological abilities or even our physical attributes. We’re talking about something we feel is inherent to us as people. Sexuality is fluid and personal, and I don’t think anyone has the right to define or dismiss someone else’s sexual identity.
I agree with Ezzy. This could have been a horribly damaging thought, not only to someone identifying as asexual, but to a friend or acquaintance of an asexual person. People need to be aware that this is a seriously false image of what we are and how we’re labeling ourselves.
Asexual reproduction and asexuality as a sexual orientation are two completely fucking different things, therefore this person’s argument is illogical (especially since homosexuals won’t reproduce unless they engage in artificial insemination or engage in sex they don’t really want to) Before it was even really considered as a sexual orientation, Kinsey studies reported roughly 1% of participants indicating a lack of sexual attraction. Recent studies replicate this. Furthermore, even among sexually reproducing animals, asexuality or lack of sexual attraction occurs, just like homosexuality. In a recent experience examining sheep, it was found that a consistent percentage of sheep (who were hormonally and physically FINE) would not have sex with neither the same or opposite sex. Furthermore, some of the rams would not engage in sex or exhibit arousal even when faced with a female in heat.
WHEN ARE PEOPLE GOING TO REALIZE THAT ASEXUALITY IN HUMANS IS AN ORIENTATION, NOT A REPRODUCTIVE STRATEGY, AND THAT IT’S ABOUT ATTRACTION, NOT ABOUT SEXUAL ACTS. SOME ASEXUALS HAVE SEX, BUT THAT DOESN’T MEAN THEY FEEL ATTRACTION, WHICH IS WHAT ASEXUALITY IS. JUST LIKE SOME SEXUAL PEOPLE DON’T HAVE SEX, BECAUSE THEY WANT TO REMAIN ABSTINENT FOR ONE REASON OR ANOTHER, BUT THEY MIGHT FEEL ATTRACTION - THEY JUST DON’T DO ANYTHING ABOUT IT.
REPEAT AFTER ME: ASEXUALITY IS THE LACK OF SEXUAL ATTRACTION. IT IS NOT A REPRODUCTIVE STRATEGY. IT HAS NOTHING TO DO WITH REPRODUCTION OR SEXUAL ACTS. IT IS THE LACK OF SEXUAL ATTRACTION.
I want to say something that I want you to remember for the rest of your lives, okay? I want you to listen closely… The Key to Life is Running and Reading.
When you’re running… there’s a little person that talks to you and that little person says, ‘Oh, I’m tired. My lung’s about to pop. Oh, I’m so hurt; I’m so tired. There’s no way I can possibly continue.’ And you want to quit, right? That person… If you learn how to defeat that person when you’re running, you will learn how to not quit when things get hard in your life.
Reading… there have been millions and billions and billions and gazillions of people that have lived before all of us. There’s no new problem you could have – with your parents, with school, with a bully, with anything. There’s no problem you can have that someone hasn’t already solved and wrote about it in a book.”
|—||Will Smith (via compulsive-thrifting)|