Kink in exile

Notes from a kinky nomad

An open letter to a man I love*

How can you possibly care more about some abstract threat of false rape accusations than you do that your best friend, a woman you love, might be raped.

You would literally break people to protect me, I know you would, how can you stand in the way of anything that helps me avoid sexual predators?

And why, if you really were concerned by the impact on the accused did you switch your tone suddenly when you realized that argument won’t work. That I will never prioritize the falsely accused (statistically small a number as they are) over my own safety and that of other women (approximately 20% of whom are raped in America). Why did you get all smug and tell me if there was the chance of false accusations, real survivors won’t be trusted so the tool hurts survivors. By that logic, police reports also hurt survivors. As do hotlines and church pastors taking confessions. Moreover, shouldn’t you be outraged that anyone would disbelieve a rape victim? If increasing trust in survivor accounts is your goal, shouldn’t you be elbow deep in the fight against people who hide behind slut shaming or “he said/she said”?

Or maybe you should be crying out against false accusations of vandalism, drug dealing, even murder. In any event, your tone made it clear your believed you were winning the argument and more than your own words.

I’ll be honest, I started loving you a little less after that conversation. I still love, of course I do, but if I had to give you a reason why we aren’t meant for each other, it’s not that we like different sex – we can get through that – its that you tried to tell me my being raped was worse than someone being accused of rape falsely. It’s not, and it’s complicated.

Wait, don’t tell me about how false accusations ruin lives. I know that. First, imagine me being raped. Really pause and imagine. Imagine where it might happen, am I wearing my standard jeans and black shirt uniform? Am I dressed up? Imagine me fighting, or because we’ve talked about this, imagine me not fighting when all I can think is “so this is what rape feels like.” Imagine holding my hand while I file a police report. Would you get to hold my hand or do police reports have to happen in private, I wonder. (Last time, #IDidNotReport)

But you’re scared too. That’s what I learned from that conversation. What I didn’t know, didn’t have empathy for when we started. You are scared that some woman will get angry at you and say you raped her. You imagine this would ruin your life, this angry woman and the power of accusation she holds. Do you think it’s strange at all that a woman who is angry at you has only this in the way of power?

Remember that other thing you told me? That thing I told you was unethical? That thing was like a false rape accusation – why did that cross your mind? How did you feel when playing that card felt ok? I’m gonna go out on a limb and say you felt powerless and you were grabbing at straws. When you think about false rape accusation, load that conversation with everything you felt in that desperate last resort moment. Because they do happen, and they are the last resort of some caged animal.

You aren’t scared of being falsely accused of burglary or murder, are you? You are personally scared of being falsely accused of rape. That fear is not unreasonable, you are allowed to be scared, you are especially allowed to be scared of desperate upset people playing their last card.

However, the chance of my being raped is an order of magnitude higher than that of you being falsely accused. And even if it wasn’t, I would expect more of you. I would, and do, expect you to build a safer world for me when you tell me you love me.

So we can talk about your fear, we can honor that and we can work through it, but your fear does not trump mine. It certainly doesn’t trump my safety.

*No, I’m not just having a super important conversation with the person who is listed on every legal piece of paper I have as my emergency contact, beneficiary, or both. We talked about this. A lot. It just didn’t feel right to post until we’d put the issue to bed, or not to post at all when I hear less personal arguments about this all the time.

Written by kinkinexile

October 25, 2013 at 12:30 am

Posted in headspace, personal

2 Responses

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  1. […] in Exile has a truly beautifully written post concerning a disagreement she had with a loved-one about her concern with being raped and his […]

    Rape | Masculine Submission

    October 25, 2013 at 9:44 am

  2. […] I’ve been meaning to pull together a couple of links about how we don’t trust women for C. The bottom line is this: I get that the idea that you might be accused of rape is scary.  It is […]


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