Help! My husband just raped me?

     I have been violated so many times.  It’s just a fact of life for me.  One of my first experiences was in the seventh grade.  It seemed like overnight I had developed “D’s” and a slight bit of scoliosis as well.  The boys obviously enjoyed looking and for some that wasn’t enough.  They took to “accidentally” hitting into me, pushing my chest with their finger to see how squishy they were and  some were so bold to come up from behind and “cup” me.  After the novelty wore off, my constant protesting, and more eager girls developed, their attention drifted to those that got pleasure from their “affection”.

     Fast forward five or six years and college guys either at frat parties or at bars would come up to me and do the same while asking “Are they real?”  I once was so drunk, I responded by grabbing one guy’s crotch and asked him, “Are these real? Ooooh (in a pitiful way) sorry, I guess they are.” He was mortified.

     Now, I am married.  I had developed the notion that most men are scum.  I couldn’t walk down a street without hearing cat calls, nor could I run without someone, male or female, caution me about getting black eyes.  That one took me awhile to figure out.

      Back to me being married; my husband (boyfriend at the time) never said anything derogatory to me nor had he touched me inappropriately.  He treated me like a princess and I fell in love. Wow. A true gentleman. I even had to make the first move.  Little by little though, I found out he was not perfect. For one, he was/is jealous.  Whereas my previous boyfriends all suggested I wear an outfit from Victoria Secret’s or the like, he would suggest a potato sack! He’d constantly warn me that he knew what guys thought. I would remind him I was a big girl.

     It’s 2006; I am married almost 14 years and after all this time, I am just finding out I have been raped numerous times by none other than my perfect gentleman, my husband!  According to Morgan, in her article Theory and Practice: Pornography and Rape, anytime I am less than eager and comply with my husband I am being raped. 

     All the times, after taking my children to their numerous activities throughout the day and the one thing I am desiring most is to sleep, and my husband reaches for me and I oblige, I am being raped. 

     When I tell him, “not tonight, my head hurts” and he cites some lame story that sex actually cures a headache and gives me his puppy dog eyes and I give in, I am being raped.

     When I know I should be working on something to meet a deadline and he suggests something less stressful, and he persuades me by touching or kissing me and I succumb, I am being raped.

     Who knew!

     If my poor husband waited for me to initiate sex, the man would be waiting forever. (All the men now – I hear you feeling for him!) I may not be in the mood most of the time: I suffer from migraines; I injured my back kick-boxing and now have 2 herniated disc that act up from time to time, I am constantly exhausted from my daily routine, I could go on, but I will spare any more details. My point is that for 14 years, I have been raped?  Unfortunately I know what it is like to be violated, but to go to the extent and say I am being raped on a daily basis is an insult to those who suffered from violent sexual abuse.  Sometimes I am persuaded, or romanced, or guilted but in the end I am satisfied; I however, am not raped.

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Desensitizing Males to Rape

I am not easily swayed by studies.  I have a problem with the results and how they come to their conclusions.  I think a lot of controlled studies are flawed, but that is my personal opinion. However, one study proves to me to have some substance.  Donnerstein and Linz did a study in 1985 regarding the effects watching pornography has on the male mind regarding rape and women.  I will explain why I think this particular study has some validity.
While searching the internet I came across an interesting article. Diana Russell takes an indepth look at this study on her website.  In this article she sites 7 studies done that she uses to support her theory about “the role of pornography in undermining some males’ internal inhibitions against acting out the desire to rape”.  I will concentrate on #7 – Desensitizing Males to Rape, the study by Donnerstein and Linz.  I strongly recommend reading this site to get more information detailing the study done on these men.  I will assume most people reading this post are familiar with the study; therefore I will not summarize. I will, however, quote one part of the article which describes a scene in one of the movies shown. “Donnerstein (1983) describes "Toolbox Murders" as follows: There is an erotic bathtub scene in which a woman massages herself. A beautiful song is played. Then a psychotic killer enters with a nail gun. The music stops. He chases the woman around the room, then shoots her through the stomach with the nail gun. She falls across a chair. The song comes back on as he puts the nail gun to her forehead and blows her brains out. According to Donnerstein, many young males become sexually aroused by this movie (1983, p. 10).”
Why?
My theory is that they do not become sexually aroused by the violence that is portrayed.  Perhaps they became sexually aroused by the bathtub scene on its own with or without the killing. I do believe that the adrenaline is kicked up and the excitement is intensified due to the violent nature of what follows.  My heart rate goes up and I feel my pulse race when I watch a suspenseful movie especially one that has such violent content. Music is added to enhance that feeling as well.  I think it is a dangerous combination when viewed by someone who cannot control their emotions.  Therefore my conclusion would be that there has to be additional outside influences that contribute to reactions of males to imitate the violence toward women. I don’t believe the movie alone would do it.

The main purpose of this study however, is proving that men are desensitized over time.  After 5 days of watching the 10 hours of movies, they are shown a documentary re-enactment of a real rape trial.  A control group also saw the trial; however, they were not exposed to the 10 hours of violence.  The results were astounding.  Those that watched the violence “rated the victim as significantly more worthless, (2) rated her injury as significantly less severe, and (3) assigned greater blame to her for being raped than did the subjects who had not seen the film”.  
Interesting.
Now what about real life vs. media?
The reason why I think this study has some sound arguments is that I can easily apply this to real life.  These men were desensitized clearly from the movies they saw.  How can this be? I don’t have the answers but I know this can be so.  There are many professions that desensitize people.  Doctors are one such example.  Before I am attacked, consider this carefully.  Most doctors come across people with fatal illnesses.  Some doctors say it is never easy to relay this information to their patients or their families and yet some say it gets easier over time.  What would happen if a doctor constantly cries over their patients and let their emotions get the best of them? In order to maintain their sanity and continue, they must build a protective shield and become thick skinned so to say – dare I say desensitize themselves?  
Then there are the police officers.  I am married to one, my father was one; I think I know what I am talking about when I say they definitely have to protect their sanity when they are on the job.  When my husband first saw a dead body, he almost threw up.  However, over time it was like second nature viewing a corpse.  After a while, I even heard him laugh with fellow officers about one such scene whereby an elder lady was found dead in her apartment.  She was naked and lying on the bed with a bottle of whiskey between her legs. He had to laugh; either that or cry. I don’t know which is worse though, becoming desensitized to make it through the days or literally go crazy from the reality that is all around.  All I know is that people do get desensitized over time.
But now the question lies with what happens next.  Does that mean you are more willing to repeat what you see or just merely that you are no longer shocked by what you see? Another thing I know but ashamed to admit is that years ago while reading the paper I would get disgusted with all the articles pointing out terrorism in the Middle East.  I thought it was pathetic, and then I remember feeling “what else is new” and turned the page.  I became desensitized to the media reports.  And then the World Trade Towers were struck and I was annoyed at myself for dismissing what was happening on the other side of the world.  And this hit home, real close to my home.  It woke me up, yet, again, I see bombing after bombing in Iraq and my heart goes out to the soldiers and the families, yet I turn the page and I don’t read the articles.  But that doesn't mean I will go out and bomb my neighbors, it just means nothing surprises me anymore.

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Would you do housework naked?

Last week, my husband came home from work and saw me vacuuming the living room. He was thrilled on so many levels. First, the house has been a disaster for so long; it was nice to see it was getting spruced up. Then there was the fact that I was wearing nothing except black stiletto heels while I was working, pushing the vacuum with one hand and holding a feather duster in the other. For years, my husband begged me to do the housecleaning in the buff and finally I appeased him.

Well actually no, I didn’t. The above paragraph is a complete fabrication, one of my husband’s fantasies. It will never happen, well never as long as there are windows in my house, children in and out, and the idea that dust and dirt can get in crevices they should just not go. The point I am trying to make is that my husband watches, in my opinion, far too much porn. He is mixing up reality and fantasy. Perhaps he isn’t mixing up the two as much as hoping for a bridge that connects them. Naturally, my husband is not a teenager. He is in his thirties, but he still looks at porn as a learning lesson. This aggravates me since, I happen to be a good teacher! He is just a poor student! But don’t tell him that. Don’t get me wrong, without opening my bedroom door, I will explain in so many words what I mean. My husband has the misconception that all women like what porn stars appear to enjoy.

How did he come upon this? Well, it is porn as sex education. Cultivation hypothesis is the belief that what he sees is real; that these women actually enjoy what they are doing. Perhaps some do. However, like Dr. Halavais mentioned, in porn movies, you never see some actress saying, “ohh no, I don’t think you should do that”, or “what the hell do you think you are doing?” Therefore, anything goes in porn, so why shouldn’t anything go in real life? Then there is the social learning aspect of pornography whereby the viewer will try to emulate what s/he sees. Now I cannot say my husband searches for porn for explicit information as a how to guide, but I do think his perception is a bit skewed. But I also think he is not alone. I think all men have their little hopes that their lives will emulate the porn they watch. Perhaps some seek to make that happen, and some strive harder than others. I just have to keep working at my husband and reel him back into reality. It’s just not going to happen. I am no prude, but I do have my limits. He’ll keep trying to push them and I will keep reminding him by gently telling him “no, I don’t think you should do that.”

My husband grew up without the internet. He got his porn from his friend. His friend got it from his father’s collection. He continued to watch porn and enjoyed magazines and other pornographic material. As an adult, and owner of a computer, he continues to get porn from his friends. They email movie clips and links to view porn. They send pictures embedded in the email. He swaps movies with friends. Is he addicted? I am not sure. Other than the fact that he tries to imitate the films he watches and asks me to go along, I do not think he has a problem. He respects me as a partner and does not see me as a trophy.

My fear is for my son, however. He is growing up with the internet. I am teaching him about sex education. He gets his Health lessons at school, and I continue at home. I don’t want him learning from an outside source. I want him to have a healthy attitude towards sex and relationships. I am always emphasizing that NO means NO. My husband on the other hand, may just hand him a video and say, “Here, it worked for me.” And that would be the worst lesson of all. So for all the posts that say parental involvement is key to a good education. My answer is YES and NO. It all depends on where the parent is getting their material.

To Spam or not to Spam – a question of respectability

Vivid seems like a reputable company.  That statement may seem weird since Vivid is an adult entertainment business that specializes in producing adult erotica.  Usually one doesn’t link reputable and “pornography” in the same sentence. 
 

Why is that?
 

I thought about this for awhile and came up with a few reasons.  First, when I think of pornography I think of sleaze and forced involvement.  But after watching some of the Vivid contract girls speak about their work, I realize this is something they truly enjoy doing.  O’Toole’s article cements that notion as well.  These actors clearly enjoy their job, and are respected workers and in no way forced to perform.
 

Second, when I think of online pornography, I think of all the emails and pop-ups my husband received through his optonline account.  True, he may have ventured onto some sites that “targeted” him; however, it does not give them the right to send him message after message luring him into opening the email by using a catchy subject line such as “Hi, sorry it took so long to respond.”  It leads the user to believe that there is a personal connection there and they just don’t recognize the email address.  
The pop-ups are another example.  One comes on the screen and you are locked in.  The “X” at the upper right hand corner just traffics you to another pop-up and so on and so forth, until you have to shut your computer down to stop the madness.  This in your face advertising is what gives the industry a sleazy reputation.
 

Third, the names these actors use, the “nom de porn” are absurd.  They are borderline laughable.  How does one take the business seriously if they are watching people with names like Candida Royalle (makes me think of a yeast infection – yuck), Woody Long, Julie Rage, and Seymore Butts to name just a few.  I realize most actors use a screen name to separate their work from their personal life; however, these names are a bit over the top. 
 

Vivid seems like a reputable company.  If more companies were like Vivid, monitoring their business, respecting their employees and taking pride in their final projects, perhaps pornography can get its persona out of the gutter and into mainstream acceptance.  On the other hand, if the small companies, in their effort to get recognized, continue to use the deceitful methods of advertising, pornography will always be linked with underhanded, sleazy ethics.  It is up to Vivid and reputable companies like them to set up a guild for the industry and monitor the business by setting up guidelines for all “players” to abide by. Perhaps then more people will be less against the industry and see it as a respectable business in which subsequently they can either choose to view or not view the material.

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My Husband’s Birthday Wish!

Wow, I am behind this week, but I have a good excuse.  It was my husband’s birthday on the 5th and my daughter’s on the 6th!  I had the whole family coming over thing to deal with, so there was the preparations and shopping for presents which left me with little time to post.  Add to that the fact that my husband and I defragmented the computer and I deleted some files manually and I think I did something that prevented me from accessing my wordpress site.  So I had some difficulty and obstacles in my way this week.

So last night I had my family over and my husband wanted my daughter to get down to opening her presents, having cake and ushering the family out the door so he could get his “real present” from me – so he tells my brother anyway!  I disappointed him!  I seem to be too sexed out from the coursework to do anything remotely real!

Seriously though, I watched the lectures about starting our own porn website and heard Dr. Halavais’ assignment and thought to myself, he can’t be serious! I don’t know if it was the fact that I had a lot on my mind this week or that the topic just wasn’t that intriguing to me.  I have no desire to start up a website, much less one that provides pornography, even if it is just to see how much (or little) money I can make.

But I did search the internet to investigate how I would start if I intended to venture into the business.  After all, this was a proposed assignment.  I remembered about the AVS sites, which is more like a scam to make money than actually verifying age because any child can go into their parent’s wallet and grab a credit card and have a field day. 

I did a quick google search and came up with this clever website. It is hysterical.  It answers a lot of questions with humor.  On this particular page, the site goes on to answer questions on how porn sites make money – much like what Dr. Halavais mentioned in his lecture.

My problem now is coming up with a niche that has not been tried or exploited.  I thought of toe sucking, it’s been done, then I thought of “underwater intercourse”. Don’t know why, it just popped into my mind. Any psychologist want to take a gander as to why that might be…anyway…I googled it and it did not come up with much except for a love-making guide. Then I googled “underwater sex” instead and of course I got the fantasy finder search engine and I thought ok it has been done as well.  But NO – it only had 3 matches and it really wasn’t a match.  Hmm maybe I am on to something here!  So perhaps that is a niche worth exploring!

Now where would I go for advertising and generating money other than the AVS and memberships.  I suppose I can use banner ads, and I can sell items that pertain to the pool and the bath, such as loofah sponges, soaps, rafts, etc.  Oh, I can think of a million mainstream items!  And perhaps I can swap ads with a pool company! What a shock some of them will get when they enter my site, but once they are there, perhaps they will drown in their adrenaline or testoterone! Perhaps they’ll enter my site through one of my least favorite ways, blind links.  I despise those.  It is known that I am a little on the naive side.  Not until hearing last week’s lecture did I realize that these links intentionally misled! Can you imagine the nerve and the unethical practice that is!  We are being manipulated into clicking on this link and it is not what we anticipated it being! Up until now, I thought the link was an accident or it has been switched and no one updated the site to warn them.  Little did I know they did this intentionally.  Nothing aggravates me more than that – so perhaps I won’t use them, but wait, if I am going to start a site, I might as well throw ALL my ethic values out the window!

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Finally – I can post – had problem signing in!

Girls Gone Wild
Playboy
And I am sure countless other pornography industries are being sued.
I came across this blog and it reminded me of what I saw in the paper the other day.  First, I want to say that I can see your point, but one second of flashing the crowd at Mardi Gras is different than having millions be able to view your action over and over again on video.  I saw a documentary done a few years ago about Girls Gone Wild. It was stated that girls signed release forms and acceptance that their pictures/actions would be on the video.  The girls then proceeded to get highly intoxicated to ‘get up the nerve’ to go wild! Anyway, it would be interesting to see if this particular girl did or did not sign a waiver.
 

This now reminds me of what is happening with Playboy. From what I understand Jessica Alba is extremely upset that Playboy is featuring her on the cover of their March 2006 issue.  Her lawyer states that this leads the reader to believe there are more explicit pictures of her in the magazine – which there aren’t any. 

Last year, Playboy approached Alba and offered her the cover; she declined but did allow them to use a publicity photo to accompany their article on the 25 Sexiest Celebrities for the inside of the magazine. 

It seems to me like Playboy played dirty. And now Alba wants compensation “for the damages and immeasurable harm caused to her good name, reputation and career.” To see the letter that threatens legal action go to TheSmokingGun.com. More information can be found on Zap2it.com as well.

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I read the same article and you should too.

I saw this post from jhrake.

I, too, read the article in the Parade.  I love that magazine; unfortunately, my hometown newspaper decided to carry a different weekly.  However, I was at my mom’s and there lying on her kitchen table was the February 19th issue of Parade.  For obvious reasons, it caught my attention and I told her I was “stealing” the paper from her!

I read the article and agreed with what Andrew Vachss reported, including his opinions, his ideas for a solution, in essence his whole article.  I tried to use the link posted by the original author and it did not work.  I don’t know if it was an error on my server or if it is a universal problem.  Their link showed it going to the proper page, however, I don’t know what went wrong.  (I am still having a problem with my creation of a link to the post for whatever reason – citing internal server problem.)

Like I said though, I think we should all read this interesting article if you haven’t already. If jhrake’s link proves to be a problem,  you can access the article at www.parade.com and search the term “child pornography”.  It will give you 8 choices, the first one is the article.

Some particular quotes that I find compelling are as follows:

“Child pornography has expanded in a business so profitable it is no longer limited to pedophiles.”  I found this to be quite interesting, yet since it is a business, I suppose investors and entrepenours would be in it for the profits, not necessarily having to agree with the content of the material.

“Statistics show that child pornography is the fastest-growing of all Internet businesses estimated to bring in several billion dollars a year.”  Since taking this class, this number does not shock me, but I do find it appalling.

“Images on the Internet can never be destroyed. The only things ‘used up’ in the child pornography business are its victims.”  That is what is so scary about the Internet, once it is out there, there is no going back.  Can you imagine years from now, victim’s grandchildren stumbling on this thinking “hey that sort of looks like me!”

“Every purchase of child pornography encourages further growth of this evil business….”  Some post suggest by pedophiles having videos, it would deter them from seeking out others to satisfy their urges.  I disagree completely and believe it further feeds them and the more they see the more they want.

Personal arousal, desensitizing potential victims, lowering chld’s resistance and personal validation are some reasons Vachss states as why pedophiles view and use child porn.

He proposes we first, must raise the stakes. “With higher penalties, some predators will be deterred. Those who aren’t can be locked away for a long time.” Second, we must eliminate the statute of limitations on acts involving the production of such material.  We must enact federal laws that will allow predators to be “stripped of their property and profits, which can be held in escrow until their victims are identified.” We must recognize this as an international crime and work with other countries whom we do business with, so that offenders have no protection, no matter where they reside. And finally, “we must acknowledge that a war cannot be fought without resources, and then demand that our legislators commit those resources.

Why shouldn’t we protect our children?

After trying to link to the article through Parade and failing, I decided to do further research and see exactly who Andrew Fachss is.  I have not finished going through the website yet, but he has a mission and he seems to be well credited. I look forward to reading more about him and his causes. I encourage you to do so as well. Perhaps, being disgusted by all this is not enough, we should be able to do something to help.