We’ve tried blaming women for their own assaults (What were you wearing? Had you been drinking? Why were you there alone?…ad nauseum) and clearly that isn’t working, with more than 1 in 5 women in the US raped during their college years
Part of “rape culture” is relegating “women’s issues” to the figurative legislative basement, where tens of thousands of rape kits sit untested, YEARS after the assaults took place, ensuring rapists are not tried at all, let alone convicted when they are.
I wonder how long it will take for men to understand that this cultural injustice impacts them as well. A generation of men raised with awareness of “women’s issues” is finally getting to the place in their lives where they want a female partner and/or have had or will have female children.
Since they have been/are far more “involved” than men have been in my lifetime, it has to be only a matter of time before they organically get the connection between women’s experience and the trouble men can have co-creating a life partnership with women who live with the social equivalent of PTSD, after a lifetime of absorbing and making excuses for ill-behaved men, from daddy to hubby and everyone in between.
Men, from infancy to old age, can only be held fully accountable for their actions when women stop making those excuses; stop settling for less than our hearts desire; stop having sex for any other reason than our OWN desire, rather than how compelling a man’s desire is for us….to shift our focus from whether or not we are ATTRACTED, rather than attractive.
It has taken five decades for me to understand what the mother in Moonstruck said is unequivocally true, on some level:
“Man may be the head of the household, but woman is the neck.”
That isn’t derogatory — it is reminding us that we are innately the ones who hold the vision for the relationship, given our emotional facility. If we offer no guidance in the form of expressing what we want, we give the man nothing to “achieve,” which is the kiss of death for “the masculine” — leaving us with a generation of men who spend too much time inert, waiting for the opportunity to step into the masculine role in the relationship.
Unfortunately, this isn’t stated in the manual for being a woman, but with men at our sides instead of at our throats, we might just have a shot at an indefinite truce in “the battle of the sexes” in our lifetime.