Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Rape Jokes Aren't Funny

WARNING: This post contains rape triggers.

So, I was going to start this post with a screen shot of the tweets that inspired it, but of course he deleted them. Can't say I'm disappointed though.

Therefore, here are the tweets almost exactly as written; as they happened just a few minutes ago, I recall them very well.

Random guy retweeted by MothPete: No matter how many times I tell them "Sshhh," I can't get girls to stop screaming with excitement when I give them surprise hugs in a parking garage.
Me to MothPete: Wow, a rape joke. Classy. Unfollowed.
MothPete to me: Sshhh.

Not only did he RT a rape joke, but he felt the need to throw the punchline back at me. I then blocked him. I don't want to hear another word from him. I wonder if he thought better of his actions though, as he deleted both of those tweets soon after.

Not only is the joke tasteless, but it's a HUGE rape trigger for unsuspecting followers, and makes a joke of something that has ruined countless women's lives. How is that funny? Why is that worth sharing?

When I was 11, I was babysitting my 5-year-old sister one summer afternoon while our parents were out. Our neighborhood was full of kids, and we visited her friend Raymond's house to hang out with them. Raymond was her age, and he had a 17-year-old half-brother. The little ones played in the playroom, while myself, the 17-year-old Billy, a 14-year-old boy, two 13-year-old girls, and a ten-year-old girl hung out in the living room and decided to play Truth or Dare. Yes, it was an odd assortment of ages, and unfortunately these kids tended to be quite cruel to me, but I desperately wanted to fit in.

The game started with stupid things: standing on your head, admitting crushes, etc. I should have known it was out of my league when I was dared to kiss the 14-year-old and he shoved his tongue so far down my throat, I literally gagged. That was my first kiss. I don't count it as such, but it technically was. Disgusting.

Not long after, I was dared to go into Billy's bedroom with him and let him go as far as he wanted until I said "Stop." Yes, I kept choosing Dare, because the deep parts of me they were trying to get at with Truth questions were even harder for me. Plus, picking Dare was "cool." So I did it. We went in his room.

He locked the door behind us, which immediately worried me. He gently pushed me and I fell on the bed in shock. I immediately said "Stop," but he laughed and said that's not how it works. He climbed on top of me, lifted my shirt, and started kissing my stomach. I again said "Stop!" and started to struggle. He got angry and tried to hold me down, but I was tiny and wiggly and squirmed away, unlocking the door and running out of the room before he could stop me.

I immediately grabbed my sister and headed home without saying a word to anyone else. I was still in shock. Even at that age, I knew it was disgusting for a 17-year-old to even WANT to do things like that to someone my age. I felt sick to my stomach and finally realized what messed-up kids these were. Spoiled rich brats that always got what they wanted and played with my life for entertainment.

I never told my parents. My father either wouldn't have believed me or would have tried to kill the kid; I had no idea. My mom would have been livid but too scared to do anything. It was easier just to forget about it. After all, I wasn't "really" raped, I told myself.

That fall I attended a friend's birthday party; a group of kids all my age that I trusted. They started playing Truth or Dare and I ran into the closet and cried. I couldn't play the damn game again till college.

Yes, I was lucky. I wasn't raped, my virginity wasn't ripped from me, I didn't have to endure someone unwanted inside of me. But I was violated, body and mind. I was hurt. I was damaged.

This is the tip of the iceberg of what rape does. I can't even imagine what it's like for others. I tell this story because it wasn't my fault and I'm not ashamed. Rape is never your fault. And it's NOT A JOKE.