© 2013 by Trish Causey. All Rights Reserved.
If you know me, you know I cover New York’s Broadway theatre for a living, doing write-ups for shows, reviewing shows and cast albums, and hosting my own radio show, Musical Theatre Talk, on which I chat with Tony Award winners, Bway designers, and composers — I’ve even covered the Tonys! I do all this from Mississippi…. Yes, Mississippi…. How?…. I’m damn good at what I do…. (And I occasionally fly to New York.)
But there are other things you may not know about me….
In 1994, I discovered a quirky independent Australian film entitled Strictly Ballroom. Almost 20 years later, Strictly Ballroom remains in my list of Top 10 Best Films of all time.
The basic tenet of the film is a quote, supposedly of Spanish Romani origin, that goes, “A life lived in fear is a life half-lived.” I have taken this quote and sentiment as the “theme” for 2013 as well as for my updated website, and my continued activism on my “secret” blog that I sort of kept from my “respectable friends” because it deals with subject matters too indelicate for polite company.
For the past year, since starting my “secret” blog, I have lived in fear of what others would think — that they would shun me, rumors would start, and I would be all alone in the big, scary world.
What the FUCK was I thinking?!
Of course, I’ll be shunned. Of course, people will talk. THIS has been the one constant in my life — being the black sheep of the family, having family and so-called friends disown me for being truthful to myself and living that truth in the open, standing up for what I believe in, speaking out for other people’s rights as well as my own. Why the hell would I be surprised for people to abandon me now?!
The fear began at age 9 when I was molested by a neighbor, a teenage girl down the street. She knew how to get me to keep silent — she threatened to tell my mother. My mother was an evil bitch, a Catholic zealot, dependent victim, and recreational martyr. I wasn’t sure what was being done to me, but somehow, my mother was bound to twist it to being my fault. That threat — that fear of being shunned by those who were supposed to love me — had lived with me for years, well into adulthood.
At 21, I was raped. (No, Republicans, it was not your definition of “legitimate rape.” It was just date-rape, just me being violated in my home by someone I knew well, which I know doesn’t really count to you as “rape-rape” even though 80% of reported rapes are committed by someone the victim knows, not the stereotypical boogey-man.) Again, I lived in fear of others finding out, of being shunned and ridiculed by those who were supposed to love me, so I didn’t tell anyone — not one person, not even the police.
Since I was 13, I’ve spoken out on many things in regards to human rights and civil rights — sometimes in regard to how it applied to me as a woman, a bisexual, a heathen pagan. Mostly, however, I’ve fought for human rights on the macrocosmic scale — I’ve fought for the principal of the basic right of <__insert human rights issue here__>.
This time last year, something happened within me, and I could no longer keep all of this inside. I created my “secret” website and blog that I absolutely love writing. Yet, I lived in fear that if my family found out, I would lose the last of my family who still talk to me… and worse yet, my activism for women’s rights, women’s body autonomy, women’s sexual health, and my own personal journey in healing from sexual abuse would be used against me by my soon-to-be ex-husband to take my child away from me…. I repeat… I’m in Mississippi… not New York….
A few days ago, while looking ahead to running for public office and knowing my “secret” blog would become public knowledge, I began to update my personal website. For some reason, the quote from Strictly Ballroom resounded in my head: “A life lived in fear is a life half-lived.”
As happy as I am in my life as a single mom, a writer, an activist, a dreamer, I still lived in fear — which meant my life was not really my own. My fear still controlled me.
I knew then that I will no longer live in fear of losing people from my life. People who shun me for being an open, honest, and unapologetic loudmouth activist are missing out on one hell of a person in their lives. Their shunning says more about them than me. In fact, today on Twitter, I saw this quote in someone’s bio: “If you judge me, you don’t define me. You define yourself.”
So, here goes…. I’m coming out of the blogger and activist closet to let everyone know about my site and blog, ArousedWoman.com. (Begin shunning now….)
“Arouse” means “to stir to action, to awaken.” To me, this perfectly summed up my activism and the awakening I was experiencing on so many levels. A year of secret blogging later, I am proud to say I have a small following of readers — okay, they’re a fabulous fan-base whom I love dearly.
Here’s some more shun-worthy information:
I have never orgasmed during sex… but then 70% of women have never orgasmed during penetrative sex. I thought the problem was me. Turns out, not all of it was my fault. Some of it was the guys’ fault (okay, a lot of it has been the fault of the men in my life). A lot of it was the fault of the sexual abuse I suffered as a child and as an adult, and much to my surprise, a great deal of my issues with sex have come from the sexual harassment I’ve suffered since I suddenly developed breasts one night when I was 10. Therefore, I have written about my abuse as a kid as well as my date rape experience. I’ve written about my lifelong hatred of my breasts, as well as my fear of intimacy. I even wrote about my own Steubenville-esque experience that I was still carrying shame over.
I’m glad to say I am a multi-orgasmic woman — enjoying spontaneous O’s even! I have documented this journey in my DailyOJ posts. I am happier than I’ve ever been in that department… so much so that I now help others — men and women — with their sexual journey and sexual healing by answering their questions in my AskTrish posts and on Twitter. I love reading the comments by my readers on my blog and Twitter — they seem to like my OpEd pieces especially:
- OpEd: How I Like My Sex… Bare…
- OpEd: The Face of Orgasm: Is Your Woman Faking Orgasms or Not? (’cause really, most men are kinda clueless)
- OpEd: Fucking Cherokee Men (and Other People of Color)
I also review products including sex toys, books, lube, and music.
Still reading all this?…
AND I post erotic pictures on my AW Tumblr…. (no, not of me…. yet….)
AND I’m planning on hosting sexual wellness workshops….
AND I’m preparing an orgasm training workshop….
AND I’ve published a sample chapter of erotica on Amazon.com Kindle, that’s FREE for Prime members. (Tempted? Go ahead, you know you want to check it out…. I’ll wait right here for you to return…)
Oh…. you’re back? Great… Where was I…….
And is now a good time to mention I had to have a medical abortion in 1997?…. No?…. Oh…. Well, then, I guess I’ll save my tale of spending 20 minutes on the kitchen floor in such horrendously painful, incapacitating contortions I could not crawl across the floor to reach the phone to call 9-1-1… (twice)… for another time.
Still reading? Wow.
And I hate religion…. I am a very spiritual person, but religion is little more than man-made rules set by a core group of wealthy, powerful elitist men who suppress the masses into subjugation and adoration through machinations of fear and guilt — and who usually HATE WOMEN…. I don’t dislike the followers of religion necessarily — I like the UU’s, and I’ve never met a Methodist I didn’t like.
AND I am the Queen of Musical Theatre…. Seriously.
Now you know. My secrets are out. I no longer have any fear. My life is a life fully lived and living!
Judge me. You will be defining yourself, not me.
LOVE THIS? NOT SO MUCH? Leave a comment below! And feel free to share on social networks.
That was random I know, but you share so much about your life and experiences that I wondered how you were doing in the areas that you don’t speak about. You have every right to say nothing. I just enjoy getting a better understanding of the woman behind the blog.
What do you like to do in your spare time, when you’re not being a sex guru or a mom? What do you hope to achieve in the next year, 5 years or 10 years? What is something that no matter how upset or angry you are always manages to make you smile or at least smirk? If knowledge is power, when it comes to the content of your Aroused Woman blog, how powerful do you feel?
All hail Queen Vagina!
You’re sweet! :-) A few posts back, I announced that I was branching out with ArousedWoman(TM), re-focusing on “Awakening Sexuality Through Mind, Body, & Spirit.” So I’ll be posting lots of new topics and crazy wack-a-doo posts that I feel are relevant to my growth and that I hope are interesting to my readers.
As you can see from my “random post” on astral travel, that experience had a profound effect on me — not just my perception of what’s on the Other Side, but experiencing what actually is and is NOT on the Other Side confirmed for me many “beliefs” in regard to humanity, religion, society, etc. My beliefs-turned-knowledge affect me sexually (i.e., there’s no hell and certainly no “sin” as classified by controlling religious dogma), the experience of pure love (I know what I’m looking for when it comes to love, I won’t settle for anything less, and love has to be felt — it can’t be intellectualized or rationalized, i.e., If I love him enough, he’ll change, so I’ll love him really hard and work to change him into the person I want him to be.), and other concepts I’m still integrating even after the 9 or 10 years since the experience.
Which brings me to my “spare time”… Just yesterday, in fact, my daughter asked me, “Just what do you do during the day?” And I had to tell her the truth. Not much. I’m a Libra, a mind-candy person. I’m a creator. It’s difficult for me to actually finish anything because once it’s complete, it’s over — I can’t mind-candy it anymore. But my creative works have to be completed if I’m gonna earn a paycheck and feed my child.
I spend most of my time reading, learning, experimenting, walking, cooking, cleaning, washing dishes, meditating, pondering, writing, tweeting, doing laundry, working, walking, composing music, looking at the trees, studying leaves, watching squirrels and birds interact, more reading, more research, more questing, listening to the wind, being witchy, brewing concoctions, making cool witchy stuff, doing web design for new clients, creating different workshops, textile design, writing, writing, writing, tweeting…
I don’t have “spare time” in that I do what I love for a living (theatre), and I’m currently working on 2 new training certifications, after which, I’ll go for 2 more. (I’m already certified in yoga and Pilates.) Because I do what I love, I don’t earn a lot of money — I live simply and have found that to be rather wonderful. I go to bed every night thoroughly happy with my life. I wish there were more time in the day, but I know I used the time I had to enrich my life, provide for my daughter, and enjoy being in this meat-suit while being amazed at the beauty that is around me.
It can be surreal sometimes. I’ve had people say, “Wow, you lucked out writing for a living.” No, I was in the performing arts for 36 years, I’m an award-winning composer, I hosted a radio show that had 27,000 listeners worldwide (that I put on hold to start ArousedWoman and fight the idiocy of the GOP during the 2012 POTUS election), and I have something to say. I created my “luck” by working my ass off and paying my “dues.” I earned my right to write for a living.
Currently, I’m creating an online course on Musical Theatre training topics, I’m starting a new project (a magazine), and I will get back to my theatre radio show soon. I’m also going to teach some health workshops in my local area to help supplement my income. I’m also working on the ArousedWoman cookbook, and I’m creating my orgasm training method (which will be in beta testing soon for anyone who wants to contact me to participate in it).
I’m still trying to get the AW Forum going and still raising money for ArousedWoman Radio, to interview guests and answer people’s question in real time. But that is slow-going. It will happen in its own time, I guess.
Most of my time is spent on personal growth, getting healthy, and growing my experiences sexually, sensually, tantrically. I want to be a complete human, not a shell of a human in the rat race of society, as so many people are. I want to help others get out of that kind of life — to help them make a better life for themselves, get healthier, find some kind of peace in this crazy world — to see that happiness in self and happiness in life are connected. I want to help people overcome their PTSD with sexual trauma. I want to help others see beyond the hypocrisy of religion, politics, and government — that all that bullshit doesn’t really matter — and if it does matter to you, then don’t just complain, actually get off your ass and do something about it.
I want to help people get off the lie that is the insensitive Western medical system which is being undermined by the pharmacological industry. I want to inspire others to get back to the “beauty way,” back to Mother Earth because the livestock and dairy industries are killing our planet and our bodies. We are not separate from the earth — the earth isn’t just the thing under the sidewalks and asphalt — the earth is our food, our air, our water, our home, our reason for incarnating to this physical plane. If the living biosphere of the earth weren’t so important to us, we would have incarnated on Mars or somewhere else. Duh.
I want people to take back their power to heal themselves without fear of criminalization from the oppressive forces in control of our society.
I want women to take back our rightful place as healers, warriors, judges, peacemakers — as we were before patriarchal misogyny made women property, whores, and household slaves.
Where do I want to be in 5 years? Hopefully, I will have finished my Bachelor’s degree in Transpersonal Psychology from Sofia University and will be nearly finished with my Master’s in Women’s Spirituality. After that, I may take 2 years to study Sanskrit at St. John’s University in Arizona. And of course, 6 years from now, I hope to have completed my work to be an official teacher of Tantra. Essentially, I want to be able to keep a roof over my head while helping others.
I used to think this life was too long. In the past century, we have tripled our life expectancy. Why? Wasn’t 35 years of war, struggle, famine, disease, and natural disasters enough? Now, we have to endure this for 72, or 85, or 105 years?! Now, I see that even that long is not enough. This is a great time to be in a meat-suit on the physical plane. It is a truly wondrous time of change, and we’re a part of it. The past century — this past year! — has seen the rise of women and the awareness of human rights that is 2,000 years overdue.
I just want to do my part to “Be the change.” In my own particular brand of “random,” witchy, artistic, holistic, bohemian, awakening, loudmouth IrishLava. :-) But understand, we really can’t change other people; we can only change ourselves and be the example of change we hope to inspire in others.
As if the NEWS in 2012 were not horrible enough in the GOP’s effort to completely thwart women’s bodily autonomy, New Mexico legislators are bringing the GOP’s misogynist KoolAid to the forefront in 2013.
State Rep. Cathrynn Brown (R) (<– of course!) introduced New Mexico House Bill 206 that would require law enforcement to charge a rape victim with a third-degree felony for “tampering with evidence,” if she terminated a pregnancy conceived through rape or incest.
According to the language in New Mexico House Bill 206:
“Tampering with evidence shall include procuring or facilitating an abortion, or compelling or coercing another to obtain an abortion, of a fetus that is the result of criminal sexual penetration or incest with the intent to destroy evidence of the crime.”
Brown offered this as justification:
“New Mexico needs to strengthen its laws to deter sex offenders. By adding this law in New Mexico, we can help to protect women across our state.
After a shit-storm of negative response by pro-choice activists and Democrat legislators, Brown explained the bill’s idiotic thinking:
“Its intent is solely to deter rape and cases of incest. The rapist — not the victim — would be charged with tampering of evidence. I am submitting a substitute draft to make the intent of the legislation abundantly clear.”
A petition has been started on Change.org to let these women-hating, rape-condoning legislators know women will not stand for such abuse of their bodies.
To support AW Radio & Forum, visit Trish’s GoFundMe page.
This is a quick note to let everyone know that I am taking the bull by the horns and starting up the Radio show and Forum that I’ve been wanting to create for a while now.
So many people ask me if I do podcasts, and I have to tell them, yes, but not yet for AW. Well, that’s changing!
While we dream of Utopia, running a radio show and hosting a forum is not free. It costs money for the licensed platforms even when the daily toil of maintaining each is based on sweat equity.
AW Radio will cover all aspects of the AW raison d’etre including Women’s Sexuality, Women’s Rights, LGBT, Survivors of Abuse, Religious Freedom, Indigenous Rights, Environmental Issues, Healthcare, Anti-Circumcision/Body Autonomy issues, and more.
The AW Forum will provide a safe place for like-minded individuals and orgs to talk about issues, recovery, and more importantly, foster solutions to put into practice. The Forum will be membership-based (to keep out the crazies) at $14.95/year, with a portion of the proceeds being donated annually to 2 organizations as voted on by the Forum community.
For more info on the Radio show as well as the Forum, visit my GoFundMe page I’ve started. Donations are securely processed by either WePay or PayPal (your choice!).
Be sure to check out the REWARD that accompanies each donation level, and make a TAX-DEDUCTIBLE donation if you can.
Released on Kindle a few months ago, Chapter 6 of Confessions of an Aroused Woman is based on my personal experiences. Confessions of an Aroused Woman is a fictionalized series of erotica vignettes that is women-positive, sex-positive, and all-around fun to read.
Reviews on Amazon.com:
Refreshingly, realistically, erotic May 31, 2012 ~ By B. Lee
Trish Causey’s writing is as informative and exciting as her website. It is fascinating to read her first-person accounts of what an aroused woman feels and does. The scene in which she is showing her man her masturbation, describing in exquisite detail her actions and sensations and thoughts, while he honors her arousal and gradually contributes to it, is intense! The chapter is so descriptive, hot, and wet, that it’s almost an erotic case study, and men-loving women would do well to take notes, with a towel nearby.
An open door…May 31, 2012 ~ By Saloonsinger
I read with relish this chapter of Confessions of an Aroused Woman. Ms. Causey writes with power and emotion. She takes us with her on a journey into being her complete and sexual self, and in so doing opens the door for each of us to recognize the same power within us. I highly recommend her as someone to keep an eye out for in the book world.
One of my Twitter followers wrote on 09-03-12:
Purchase Chapter 6 for only $2.99 … to tide you over until the entire book is ready for publication!
Thank you! And I really hope you enjoy it. MUAH!! xoxo
I know most of my readers check out my blog for sex tips, so I won’t drag this out. It is a sad reality, though, that the uncomfortable topic of rape doesn’t come up often enough in our culture’s national dialogue. If it did, maybe there would be less rape in the world.
This Twitter drama was more than I ever wanted or needed in terms of having to defend myself from being blamed for my rape and/or being made the villain because I didn’t report it. When the verbal assault happened over Twitter, I felt like I’d been blunt-kicked in the heart. I felt that creepy, dizzy feeling radiating outward from my ribcage, and I started shaking. I just breathed through it and decided to get angry instead of allowing any PTSD take over. The anger allowed me to channel my feelings into writing, which is proactive and productive. See! Being Irish comes in handy!
I want to genuinely thank all of you who sent me words of love and support, and I appreciate the sentiment of those who offered to help do that Twitter jerk bodily harm. Unfortunately, the Law of Karma prevents me from accepting your generous offer. :)
Remember, however, for every rape that is reported, many, many more go unreported thanks to the insensitivity of our misogynist culture that wants to blame the victim.
I am a survivor. Thank you, all! MUAH!
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While having a thought-provoking chat with a friend on Twitter, I got a bit of a shock out of nowhere. I’m not shocked easily. I wish I could say I’m not hurt easily, but even after all the crap I’ve been through in my life, my annoying humanity is still intact.
With the ridiculous comment from Rep. Todd Akin about “legitimate rape,” all of Twitter was a-buzz with chatter on the subject of rape. Interestingly, the topic which had started out being on abortion had shifted dramatically to rape, and not surprisingly, society once again placing the blame and the shame of rape on the women — the rape victim.
Out of nowhere, this jerk, “Dan,” buts into the civil convo I was having with my friend @sevenlayercake — though we differ in viewpoints, she and I can have amiable conversations. Whenever a Twitter interloper butts in, I check their bio. This guy was supposedly an “outspoken gay professional.” As a loudmouth Scotch-Irisher and theatre pro, I can certainly handle this guy.
I posted the link to my recent article on my rape — something I have never, ever, ever, EVER told the details of to anyone alive or dead on this earth until I wrote this article on it a few days ago. Why? For the very reason, I didn’t think anyone would believe me. And this jackwad says, “You want to milk your rape for sympathy.”
If this guy is “gay,” then he is the most fervently women-hatin’ gay man I’ve ever met. Gay men usually dig women, just not sexually. Being in the theatre, it’s not unusual for a gay man to ask me how I do my lipstick or to borrow my blouse.
So, below, is the conversation and yet another example of how the War on Women exists — and is apparently spreading to the gay men demographic, which I find to be very sad. :(
In my head, I hear the lyrics to Gloria Gaynor’s anthem:
First, I was afraid, I was petrified…
I will survive
As long as I know how to love,
I know I’ll stay alive
I’ve got all my life to live,
I’ve got all my love to give
And I’ll survive,
I will survive.
It took all the strength I had not to fall apart
Kept trying hard to mend the pieces of my broken heart
I spent, oh, so many nights just feeling sorry for myself
I used to cry but now I hold my head up high.
I will survive.
(Click image to enlarge.)
Just when you think the Grand Ol’ Party can’t sink any lower in its blatant misogyny of women, women’s rights, and their outlook on women’s bodies, Rep. Todd Akin reveals a whole new abyss of as yet unexplored hatred of the female sex.
It wasn’t long ago that men were the only ones on the House panel on birth control, that 31 Senators voted against the Violence Against Women Act, and the GOP in Michigan censored a female state representative, violating her First Amendment right to free speech. Now, the GOP creeps us out further.
In a TV interview, Rep. Todd Akin (R-Mo.) had this to say about his views on abortion, even if conception is due to rape:
“From what I understand from doctors, that’s really rare. If it’s a legitimate rape, the female body has ways to try to shut that whole thing down. But let’s assume maybe that didn’t work or something. I think there should be some punishment, but the punishment ought to be on the rapist.”
So Akin is now a medical expert as well as a judge-and-jury on “Legitimate Rape?” So all of us who have been raped now need to measure our own horrible experience with sexual abuse by his and the GOP’s standard? A standard which has no medical basis? Because, according to Akin, every woman who has ever said she got pregnant from being raped was lying?!
The GOP RWNJ Republicans rape women on a daily basis! Oh, wait that’s “Legislative Rape” as they are systematically removing laws and undoing decades of work women have literally fought and died for in the battle for equality. And that kind of rape of women, our rights, and our bodies is just hunky-dorey.
This is a blatant sign of the ensuing institutionalized brainwashing against women that we can expect if the GOP continues to buy its power via elections in the United States.
What’s worse than our rape experiences being de-valued by the patriarchal, misogynist GOP is that this makes men look bad as well. The men who love women and support women’s rights will be lumped into either the GOP misogynist corner or the corner of “all men” who are abusers.
By the way, Akin’s thoughts on the morning-after pill are pretty clear as well:
“[T]he morning-after pill is a form of abortion, and I think we just shouldn’t have abortion in this country.”
Maybe we should not have misogyny in this country?! The elections this year are paramount to blocking the GOP’s persistent #WarOnWomen!
Agree? Disagree? Leave a comment below!
After a morning spent enlightening the GOP teabaggers on how ridiculous they are (nicely, of course), I once again had the yearning to run away from all this election craziness — this time coupled with an insane desire to join a nudist colony… just to be free of all the status symbols society deems important or even crucial to life.
I commiserated that I haven’t lost enough weight to be naked in front of others in public and was promptly reminded that we women cannot self-sabotage ourselves by heeding the KoolAid of media and culture’s negativity.
So onward I go, through this catharsis that has me by my she-balls.
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Every now and then I do post my political opinions — sometimes, my vagina and my clit need a break from all the hippy, free-(self)-love I give them. So I made an innocent little comment about capitalism, the middle class, and the GOP. Out of nowhere, some GOP teabagger makes a rude (and stupid) comment, to which I responded… several times.
So far, no response. And once again, you will see why I really just want to get this 2012 Election process over with. My body needs a break from the negative energy this campaign is producing… Talk about “pollution”!
(Click on image to enlarge.)
As the negativity on Twitter has compelled me to lay low on the social networking site, I did pop in to update my tweeps on AW’s growing stats and readership (<– shameless plug!). And of course, I like to chat with my like-minded free-thinkers.
Without waxing too poetic, I’m finding the negativity of politics too much to tolerate. I don’t watch “the news” and I don’t even have a TV (gave it away). But 2012 is an important year in women’s rights as well as for the country as a whole. As much as I want to live in my hippy free-love Utopia, I know that is not a real possibility… for now… For now, we must be vigilant and ensure the GOP doesn’t win the White House. VOTE, PEOPLE!
Anyhoo, had this chat with a friend, and it brought a smile to my face. So Twitter isn’t evil all the time. :D
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Feminism is a hotly-debated topic in America and other narrow-minded, backwards, patriarchal areas of the world. As a woman who is a humanist, I often have to deal with the backlash from other women who think I’m a traitor to “the cause.”
I will write a longer piece detailing my why’s and wherefore’s of being a humanist rather than a feminist, but today on Twitter, I gave a brief “nutshell version” of my reasoning. The responses in return ranged from thought-provoking to hilarious.
Below are a few of the comments that made me think and made me smile.
As a stage artist, I trained my voice for years. I studied the sounds we make and how we make them. As a writer, and especially as a lyricist, I have toiled over the perfect words to scribe for dialogue or a song because the sound of the word itself has as much of an effect on the listener as the meaning of the word.
Just talking about rape brings strong emotions from women (and men!) who have experienced rape as a teen or an adult, or rape as a child, more commonly known by its euphemistic pseudonym, molestation.
Years ago, I realized that “rape” is a harsh word just as the act of rape is harsh. The growling of the “R”, the blunt hit of the unaspirated, hard “P” mimics the sharp, precise consonants’ onomatopoeia effect of “BruTal” and “aTTacK.” Conversely, the word “molestation” rolls of the tongue, rendering the word practically useless in conveying the horror of being raped as a child and softening the disdain society might otherwise feel. Example, decide for yourself which sounds worse: “A priest molested a boy” … or … “A priest raped a boy.”
I’ve rarely talked about my “molestation” as a kid, and I’ve almost never talked about the night I was raped. Only recently did I even tell people that I was still a virgin at age 21 — it was here on this blog, actually. For some reason, our hypersexualized culture has made it shameful to hold off on sex until a person is really ready. It’s as if teens must be sexual or they’re not normal. I was normal in many ways, but still dealing with my “molestation,” I had lots of issues I had to work out on my own when I was a teenager.
Also, my rape was not “real” rape. My rape would be sub-classified as “date-rape.”
We were in my bedroom — so clearly, I was “asking for it.” I was wearing a button down shirt and jeans. In 1994, it was fashionable to wear jeans that had rips in them. Mine did, right along the ass-line of the left leg. If a woman can show some butt cheek when she wears a swimsuit or shorts, I didn’t see the harm in a little peek-a-boo of my upper thigh at the butt line. And I was in my own home.
We were talking on the bed — but neither he nor I even mentioned having sex together. The next thing I knew I was being flipped over, my shirt ripped open, and he was inside me. I couldn’t think. The shock of pain like a thousand daggers stabbing me in my core and up my spine was something I’d never felt before. I couldn’t breathe. My brain started going into survival mode, and I felt like I was about to black out. I felt as if I were falling backward into an abyss. I couldn’t feel the bed or even him in that moment, just falling and shockingly intense pain throughout my body.
I realized I was still wearing my jeans. The button was still done, the zipper was zipped. He had entered me through the rip in my jeans. Dry mouthed, I asked him to slow down so I could adjust. All the while, I’m thinking, “How did he do that? Just breathe… How did he get inside of me with my jeans still on?” He said my tightness just made him harder, so he went faster. He said he couldn’t help himself… He pulled out, pulled me on the floor to my knees and told me to suck him off — he’d been wanting me to give him a blow job “for forever,” he said. Then he grabbed my hair and rammed my head down on his erection. I was still in shock, so my mouth must have felt like sandpaper. I was in a daze, on my knees, trying not to throw up, wearing all my clothes, trying to process what was happening. Just as quickly, it was over, and he was leaving. He was a friend. Dazed, but still true to my Southern upbringing of being polite, I walked him to his apartment a few buildings over. I walked home, but noticed I couldn’t feel the ground beneath me; my legs felt like jelly.
I stood in the center of my room, looking at the bed. I felt this whoosh of fluid. I was bleeding. I bled for 4 days. I thought about going to the police, but most of the people I knew also knew him. And if it went to trial, my “character witnesses” would all say they thought I’d been whoring for years — everyone assumed I was “loose” because I had large breasts. I feared being laughed at by the male policemen, ridiculed in court, verbally attacked by the opposing lawyer — I’ve watched enough TV to know how rape accusers are treated in court.
Yet, the hardest part — the part that actually made me not report my rape — was having to say in public that I was technically still a virgin at the old age of 21. Who would believe that? So I didn’t go to the police. Or the hospital. I just prayed I had not contracted some disease. After all, it seemed getting raped was inevitable in our society, so why should I complain? It’s not like is was a “bad rape” like being mauled in an alley by a scary boogeyman.
So then, maybe I wasn’t really raped. Maybe it was “just sex” after all…. Maybe sex with all my clothes on and without my permission is just “date-sex-I-didn’t-want-to-have-especially-since-I-was-a-virgin-but-it’s-not-really-rape.” Maybe Comedy Central comedian Daniel Tosh has a funny rape-joke commentary to make on my behalf?
People still think rape only occurs when the scary boogeyman assaults a woman in the mall parking lot at 10 p.m. Most women are raped by men (or women!) they know, particularly their spouses, family members, or neighbors. Rape is not the bullshit storyline you’ll see on Lifetime Television for Victims, just like you won’t find the secrets of orgasms in a Cosmo poll.
Because of my experience, I don’t do “blow jobs” — I do oral sex on my terms. I tell a man ahead of time not to grab my hair or he’s getting a fist in his balls. I also don’t get on my knees for any man or any god. More importantly, I don’t blame all men or hate the penis for what was done to me by one man.
As the mother of a daughter, the one thing that guided me in practically every decision I have made in her care and upbringing was that I wanted her to get to the age of 18 without being molested or raped. Now that she’s 14, I’m working on making sure she has a foundation of what is right for her and that she never has to succumb to an abuser. The age of 18 is now innocuous as I no longer hold the pessimistic world view that being raped is an inevitable fact of life for women.
Rape is not inevitable. Rape is preventable. To me, “rape culture” is a society that knows rape and sexual abuse are wrong but looks the other way while mocking the survivors who are willing to speak up and shaming the survivors too scared to speak out.
When our culture stops heeding the media’s marketing and drinking the misogynist KoolAid that de-values our experiences as rape survivors, only then can we adequately prevent rape from happening. Women, men, and children are experience rape on a daily basis. Rape culture exists in religion as well as government and society. Rape is a tool of war. It’s time we put an end to the rape culture that propagates sexual abuse while it terrorizes and punishes the survivors.
Rape is not inevitable. Rape is preventable. End #RapeCulture.
With all the vaginal hooplah in Michigan over a proposed bill that limits reproductive rights for women, mainstream media did not make as big a fuss over men’s reproductive rights being put on the chopping block.
Michigan state legislator Barbara Byrum had proposed an amendment to the same House bill that would severely hinder a women’s pro-choice rights in Michigan. However, her amendment was devised to make a point about the sexist misogyny overtaking American politics. She proposed that men would have to provide proof of a medical emergency or that a man’s life was in imminent danger in order for a doctor to perform a vasectomy.
The floor leader gaveled her out of order and refused to let her speak. Apparently, limiting women’s choice to reproduce is okay, but men should not have similar choice restrictions put on their genitals.
Byrum wanted to make a point about the over-reaching legislation of the bill in question. She protested being censored and released this statement:
“I was ignored by the majority floor leader and not allowed to speak on my amendment which would have held the same standards for men and women when it comes to legal, voluntary procedures in reproductive health and now I am being silenced for standing up for women. This is yet another example of this Republican majority’s misogynistic and cowardly tactics.”
The sad truth is that the narrow-minded GOP in Michigan is only one faction of misogynist oppressors wanting to prohibit female human beings from making basic choices about their lives and their bodies. 2012 is shaping up to be a very important year indeed.
The War On Women wages on…
In the past few months, we’ve witnessed the careful and deliberate dissolution of women’s rights that already exist and the steadfast determination of Right Wing, Christian, Conservative Republicans to further strip women of much-deserved basic, human rights.
Now, the Senate has failed to get S. 3220, the Paycheck Fairness Act, off the ground. The title of S. 3220 is thus:
“A bill to amend the Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938 to provide more effective remedies to victims of discrimination in the payment of wages on the basis of sex, and for other purposes.”
What did the Senate have a problem with? I can only surmise that “basis of sex, and for other purposes” must have struck fear in the black holes (i.e., hearts) of the GOP. “Sex” is the Republicans greatest enemy! Republicans fear sexual gender (women and transgender) and sexually active people (everyone on the planet who’s not a hypocritical Republican, of course). Without sex and gender being a problem, the Republicans would not have anyone to hate. Expecting the Republicans to hand out “fairness” to anyone with a vagina — or genitals they use on a regular basis — must have been too much for them to process. In fact, it seems the only sex that Christian Conservatives approve of is GOP politicians’ illicit sex with hookers, college date rape, and pedophile priests.
Oh, wait. Discrimination victims of “other purposes” could mean skin color, religion, shape of nose, kinkiness of “foreign” hair, height, weight, looking scary…
Clearly, moving into the 21st century has taken its toll on the GOP. It was bad enough for upper-class, white Christians to have to sit by black people at a restaurant. Then women wanted control over their bodies. Now, everybody wants fairness. Well, not if the GOP can help it! And they certainly did everything they could to prevent the Paycheck Fairness Act from getting through.
With a needed vote of 3/5 majority (60 out of 100 Senators), the vote was clearly divided between bleeding heart liberals (52) and RWNJ GOP types (47), with 1 abstention. The phrase that comes to mind is, “They’re thick as thieves.” Stealing fairness, like pay equality, from the majority of Americans is a trademark GOP tactic and should be criminal not a daily Congressional activity.
According to Senate.gov, here’s how the voting went.
|Not Voting – 1|
You’ll notice that this Kirk from Illinois also did not vote on the recent Violence Against Women Act. I can only guess that he does not want to pass such “fairness” for victims of violence, but come re-election time, he probably does not want it on his record that he voted against VAWA… and now the PFA. Coward.
I’m a stage person, not a video person, so I don’t have all the fancy equipment to do video. I had to use my phone (held by my fabulous daughter!). I’m also still losing my miserable-marriage-weight, so video has been the last thing on my to-do list!
And yet, I’ve been wanting to do a weekly video round-up of news and blog posts but have been too self-conscious. Maybe now, I just won’t care about what I look like on video and do the weekly vids anyway.
So for what it’s worth, here’s the video of me giving the nutshell version of my stance on why I work for Women’s Rights.
NEWS: List of 31 Senators Who Voted Against the Violence Against Women Act (& the Coward Who Didn’t Vote at All)
Here’s a list of the 31 women-hating Senators in the national Congress of the United States of America (including one WOMAN!), plus the coward who did not vote one way or the other. Remember their names the next time they are up for re-election!
I’ve also added their phone numbers so you can contact them directly. The area code is (202).
Below that I’ve listed the 68 women-loving Senators (even some Republicans!) who voted for the Violence Against Women Act. Remember their names the next time they are up for re-election as well!
To find out more about our Senators, go to the official page for the U.S. Senate.
|NAYs - 31|
|Barrasso (R-WY), 224-6441 MALE
Blunt (R-MO), 224-5721 MALE
Boozman (R-AR), 224-4843 MALE
Burr (R-NC), 224-3154 MALE
Chambliss (R-GA), 224-3521
Coburn (R-OK), 224-5754 MALE
Cochran (R-MS), 224-5054 MALE
Cornyn (R-TX), 224-2934 MALE
DeMint (R-SC), 224-6121 MALE
Enzi (R-WY), 224-3424 MALE
Graham (R-SC), 224-5972 FEMALE
|Grassley (R-IA), 224-3744 MALE
Hatch (R-UT), 224-5251 MALE
Inhofe (R-OK), 224-4721 MALE
Isakson (R-GA), 224-3643 MALE
Johanns (R-NE), 224-4224 MALE
Johnson (R-WI), 224-5323 MALE
Kyl (R-AZ), 224-4521 MALE
Lee (R-UT), 224-5444 MALE
Lugar (R-IN), 224-4814 MALE
McConnell (R-KY), 224-2541 MALE
Moran (R-KS), 224-6521 MALE
|Paul (R-KY), 224-4343 MALE
Risch (R-ID), 224-2752 MALE
Roberts (R-KS), 224-4774 MALE
Rubio (R-FL), 224-3041 MALE
Sessions (R-AL), 224-4124 MALE
Shelby (R-AL), 224-5744 MALE
Thune (R-SD), 224-2321 MALE
Toomey (R-PA), 224-4254 MALE
Wicker (R-MS), 224-6253 MALE
|Not Voting – 1|
|Kirk (R-IL), 224-2854|
|YEAs – 68|
Alexander (R-TN) REPUBLICAN
Ayotte (R-NH) REPUBLICAN
Brown (R-MA) REPUBLICAN
Coats (R-IN) REPUBLICAN
Collins (R-ME) REPUBLICAN
Corker (R-TN) REPUBLICAN
Crapo (R-ID) REPUBLICAN
Heller (R-NV) REPUBLICAN
Hoeven (R-ND) REPUBLICAN
Hutchison (R-TX) REPUBLICAN
McCain (R-AZ) REPUBLICAN
|Murkowski (R-AK) REPUBLICAN
Portman (R-OH) REPUBLICAN
Snowe (R-ME) REPUBLICAN
Vitter (R-LA) REPUBLICAN
Keep up the fight!
Visit the Aroused Woman website.
With the current political climate in the United States, tensions are running higher than ever in the battle for women’s rights. In fact, the GOP’s consistent disregard for a woman’s sovereignty over her own body has been dubbed the “War on Women.”
In the world of social networking, the hashtagged terms #waronwomen and #wherearethewomen have hundreds of thousands of women following the Twitterverse updates on their phones as well as articles and editorials in the online blogosphere. This unity of women extends beyond the borders of the U.S., as women around the world are beginning to #occupy their bodies and the legislatures to end the #waronwomen and our bodies.
Whether the topic is birth control, pregnancy, body piercing, or genital mutilation, or forced sterilization, women must be in control of what happens to and in out bodies.
The Republicans in Congress are leading the charge against women. Congress has repealed the Violence Against Women Act, which changes the legal deifnition of rape. As if the the Susan G. Komen kerfuffle and the attempt to de-fund Planned Parenthood wasn’t bad enough. Sandra Fluke became a household name when the all-male committee on the women’s birth control panel had no women on its team and refused to hear Fluke’s testimony.
And it’s only April. Presidential elections aren’t until November. This will be a long year, kids.
Hey, #GOP! I’m ovulating. Would u like 2 come over 2 catch my egg b4 it’s flushed down the toilet when I go 2 the bathroom? #waronwomen #fem2 #women
Aside from a few snickers from men, my point was made, and I am just one woman who is speaking out against the tide of oppression powered by the GOP’s medieval mentality.
With the Republicans claiming they know best in all matters of a woman’s body, incensed women around the country have bombarded the Facebook accounts of religious, conservative Republican legislators. Women have been leaving messages about their periods, bloating, cramps, ovulating, hormonal fluctuations, mood swings, what kind of bra to buy, the best cure for a vaginal yeast infection, soothing tender breasts, requesting breastfeeding tips, and so much more.
Interestingly, I don’t think any of these male right-wing nut-jobs was able to offer any advice. On another forum, I’ve recently had my own run-in with men who think they know the female body and female orgasm better than women do. And this guy wasn’t even American. So clearly, the problem exists everywhere, which means the #waronwomen is far from over.
The bad news is that this is just the middle of the war, each week brings a new battle, it seems. The great news is that women in America are not sitting idly by and hoping for the best. Women are taking to the streets to protest the right-wing’s agenda and networking online and via social media to connect and get the word out. We don’t need an imaginary warrior princess to save us from the bad guy. And the war won’t end with the elections in November.
Every woman has the capacity to be a Warrior Queen, fighting for her right and all of our rights to have control over our bodies.