jessica valenti

Scroll to Info & Navigation

If we teach women that there are only certain ways they may acceptably behave, we should not be surprised when they behave in those ways.

And we should not be surprised when they behave these ways during attempted or completed rapes.

Women who are taught not to speak up too loudly or too forcefully or too adamantly or too demandingly are not going to shout “NO” at the top of their goddamn lungs just because some guy is getting uncomfortably close.

Women who are taught not to keep arguing are not going to keep saying “NO.”

Women who are taught that their needs and desires are not to be trusted, are fickle and wrong and are not to be interpreted by the woman herself, are not going to know how to argue with “but you liked kissing, I just thought…”

Women who are taught that physical confrontations make them look crazy will not start hitting, kicking, and screaming until it’s too late, if they do at all.

Women who are taught that a display of their emotional state will have them labeled hysterical and crazy (which is how their perception of events will be discounted) will not be willing to run from a room disheveled and screaming and crying.

Women who are taught that certain established boundaries are frowned upon as too rigid and unnecessary are going to find themselves in situations that move further faster before they realize that their first impression was right, and they are in a dangerous room with a dangerous person.

Women who are taught that refusing to flirt back results in an immediately hostile environment will continue to unwillingly and unhappily flirt with somebody who is invading their space and giving them creep alerts.

People wonder why women don’t “fight back,” but they don’t wonder about it when women back down in arguments, are interrupted, purposefully lower and modulate their voices to express less emotion, make obvious signals that they are uninterested in conversation or being in closer physical proximity and are ignored. They don’t wonder about all those daily social interactions in which women are quieter, ignored, or invisible, because those social interactions seem normal. They seem normal to women, and they seem normal to men, because we were all raised in the same cultural pond, drinking the same Kool-Aid.

And then, all of a sudden, when women are raped, all these natural and invisible social interactions become evidence that the woman wasn’t truly raped. Because she didn’t fight back, or yell loudly, or run, or kick, or punch. She let him into her room when it was obvious what he wanted. She flirted with him, she kissed him. She stopped saying no, after a while.

Harriet J on Another post about rape (via archenemies)

Oh my god, this. All of this.

(via one-bite-at-a-time)

Oh look, another way in which women are royally fucked by constructs of femininity.

(via whynotshesaid)

(via alicetiara)


  1. fluffyrainbowninjakitties reblogged this from slutwalkdc
  2. mezzamera reblogged this from mezzamera
  3. gypsy-eyes-67 reblogged this from ktcomplicated
  4. ktcomplicated reblogged this from activistaabsentee
  5. stringsandloosethreads reblogged this from stormandmoonlight
  6. haylett reblogged this from thesexypenguin
  7. typicalcliche reblogged this from thesexypenguin
  8. afleur-de-peau reblogged this from thesexypenguin
  9. stormandmoonlight reblogged this from thesexypenguin
  10. alisifission reblogged this from thesexypenguin
  11. thesexypenguin reblogged this from thesexypenguin
  12. vanilla-and-vanilla-swirll reblogged this from gabrielleabelle
  13. habitusian reblogged this from stuffcrazygirlslike
  14. sadnakedtoast reblogged this from betinetine
  15. twigsandgrace reblogged this from twigsandgrace
  16. spiritfireanddew reblogged this from cavansite
  17. cutting-the-rope reblogged this from theroself
  18. saralilah reblogged this from ablackwomansurvivingrape
  19. stilllikedustillrise reblogged this from ablackwomansurvivingrape
  20. ablackwomansurvivingrape reblogged this from feminine-is-not-fragile
  21. rougecat reblogged this from xxdaimonxx
  22. twistedmidnightdreams reblogged this from lachtna
  23. lachtna reblogged this from xxdaimonxx
  24. xxdaimonxx reblogged this from slash-is-my-weakness86
  25. fabulous-fluffy-fox reblogged this from slash-is-my-weakness86
  26. slash-is-my-weakness86 reblogged this from geek-fangirl
  27. ladykillerella reblogged this from sky-on-blog
  28. geek-fangirl reblogged this from muffintopalopilis
  29. puzzleball reblogged this from arepeoplesomuchbiggerontheinside
  30. muffintopalopilis reblogged this from jenntorro
  31. jenntorro reblogged this from alternategranger