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[This is a slightly modified transcription of a packet created by Karla Miller, LISW, Executive Director of the Rape Victim Advocacy Program in Iowa City, IA]
This is a list of things you might hear from rapists and abusers to excuse, justify, or deny their actions. Miller has worked extensively in sex offender treatment groups, and first compiled this packet in 1997. It has since been updated several times.
Rapists and abusers are very, very good at hiding what they do, sometimes even fooling themselves. They use these lies and distortions to overwhelm and confuse their victims, and to dismantle support systems for survivors.
Their tactics are so insidious, and nobody is immune. Remember this if someone you care about is accused of sexual assault. They may not be the person you thought you knew.
I have an abortion scheduled on Saturday. Is it wrong/bad for me to want a picture from the ultrasound? I don't know why I do really. Also I'm really scared there will be picketers there. I have terrible anxiety and even though my SO is taking me and I will have headphones, just knowing they're there is terrifying.
Many women choose to see their ultrasound, and even keep the picture (I have mine). Its not weird at all. This is a private and unique experience happening to you and you feel free to do whatever it is you need to feel comfortable, safe, and at peace. Picketers can be so scary, you don’t deserve to go through that. I’m glad your SO will be with you giving you the support you deserve. Headphones are a great idea, maybe even close yours eyes, and park closest to the door. I wish I could magically zap them away for you. I hope it all goes/went well. Take good care of yourself -Kate
So if we have to show women what the baby looks like in their womb and tell them how the process works before allowing them to get an abortion, does that mean we should teach our soldiers about the culture of the lands we’re invading, and explain to them that the people we want them to kill have families and feel pain, just like Americans?
An oft’ repeated argument by the anti-abortion sect is that “consent to sex is consent to pregnancy”. This ignores the concept of ongoing consent. When an action is not a single action, but an ongoing situation, it requires ongoing consent. I know the application of this concept to pregnancy is one not often considered, but it is fully applicable.
So let’s break this down into the simplest form I can produce- a basic syllogism.
- Does an ongoing action, condition or situation require ongoing consent? The law and common sense say yes.
- Is pregnancy an ongoing condition, action or situation? Yes.
- Therefore, pregnancy requires ongoing consent.
So even if the action of sexual intercourse itself is consent to pregnancy (which I personally disagree with, but that is not the topic at hand) the action of continuing to stay pregnant requires ongoing consent. If that consent is withdrawn, so too must the action of continuing to stay pregnant end.
A parallel I have used in the past is the one most commonly associated with the concept of ongoing consent: sex. If my SO and I are getting sexy, and I decide, for whatever reason, be it convinience, mental state, health-related, my period, or just not feeling it any more, that I don’t want to continue having sex, and I communicate this to him, he is obliged to stop. If he does not, that is rape.
According to the logic that anti-abortion types use, because I consented before the sexual experience began, I have no right withdrawing that consent in the middle of the sexual experience. Any logical, feeling person will see how that is not okay. Pregnancy is ongoing. And for pregnancy to continue, my consent must also continue.
The date I got my abortion. I was 7 weeks and 5 days when I had my procedure. Two days before I had my ultrasound. I heard the heartbeat and looked at the screen but neither made me doubt my decision.
I got to the Planned Parenthood in Austin, TX at 8 am. I filled out paperwork in the waiting room and then waited about an hour. Then I was taken to get blood work and such done which never bothers me any. Then we went over even more paperwork about the procedure, the risks (which do not include breast cancer or infertility because those are myths pro lifers came up with) and they covered info on birth control (I settled for the pill because it’s free and the procedure cost $420). Then they took me to the recovery room where I visited with the doctor who would perform the abortion (same doc that did my ultrasound). She was extremely sweet and understanding and really made me feel less nervous. We decided to go with moderate sedation which included an anti-anxiety med and pain med.
After visiting with her I was given a bag of socks, a gown and a blanket, and put into the patient waiting room where I watched a shitty soap for about another hour. Then I was called back into the recovery room where I changed into my gown and socks and they put in my IV.
Finally, my doctor came in and escorted me to the back of the building into the surgical suit. The nurse I had seen my first day there gave me my medications through my IV and I instantly stopped shaking and my nervousness was gone. I barely felt anything when my cervix was being dialated. Mostly just pressure and then a weird suction sensation. After about 5 minutes I was done and back in the recovery room. I sat there for a bit while they took out my IV and got all my things together. They checked my bleeding twice and then I was told I can go.
It was seriously that simple and that short of a procedure. I never really felt pregnant to begin with so I didn’t feel any different afterwards. Even when I think about it now I don’t feel any different than before. I don’t feel any regret or remorse. I feel very relieved and stress free and now my family and I can get back on track.
My abortion was a good decision and I am not ashamed of it. I would also like to thank Planned Parenthood for being so amazingly informative, understanding, and supportive. I have never in my life felt at ease in any clinic or hospital except for at a Planned Parenthood clinic. Thank you for being awesome(:
Thank you for sharing your story and being so open about your experience!
I know I say this a lot, but I am so so happy to know that there are other religious voices who support choice. And I’m relieved to know that secular voices welcome us with open arms.
So many people are pro-choice not in spite of, but because of their faith, and it’s so inspiring to read their words. I’m not religious, but I truly admire work they do in their communities centering on their faith.
And honestly, what are the numbers? Almost 75% of abortion patients are Christian or otherwise religious. More abortions patients identify as religious than not! Clearly, there’s a huge need for spiritual support and connection.
These are the lyrics sent around by Georgia Tech’s now disbanded Phi Kappa Tau fraternity for their Christimas Party.
The fraternity was found to be engaged in “pattern of sexual violence that…suggests a deep-rooted culture within the fraternity that is obscene, indecent and endangers women” and shut down by the school, but not before they wrote this little ditty.
This is not some “boys will be boys” nonsense. The kind of language and graphic descriptions of violence against women in this song shows a DEEP-seated hatred for us, for our bodies, for our humanity. This kind of thinking cannot come from a mind that respects and sees us as autonomous, equal people. People who write and engage in this kind of stuff -even under the guise of “joking”- have the potential to hurt, maim, assault, rape, or kill us because in their minds, our humanity is already diminished and humor has already been made out of the concept of violence against us. Spread this like wildfire.
SEVERE TRIGGER WARNING for rape, misogynistic slurs, and graphic descriptions of violence against women
Under the jump because it’s long and so triggering:
These are the boys you sit in class with, you do your homework with, you kiss and laugh with. They will grow to be the men in charge of your paycheck, carpooling with your kids, passing the collection plate, writing your laws. People like this are, at best, enablers of rapists and abusers, and people you can’t trust to protect and respect you and the ones you love. You can’t “joke” like this without having something deeply, deeply warped inside you.
I hope these boys find help fixing themselves, and I hope everyone around them stays safe. Don’t dismiss these things from people in your life. They’re telling you about themselves. Listen.
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