Let’s start with the main misconception regarding rape: Clothes are a contributive factor towards someone getting raped.
Actual reality: No, it isn’t. Like AT ALL.
Let’s talk about women getting raped first. Even if she was covered from head to toe in a curtain, she would be raped, not because of any other reason but because she’s a woman. Same in the case of men. When there is a case of men getting raped, nobody says it was because he was wearing provocative clothes or was bare chested.
1.Both men AND women are capable of raping; it’s not about the gender of the culprit, but the mindset. Men can rape men, men can rape women, women can rape men, women can rape women. A culprit doesn’t have a gender. Don’t assign it one.
2. In most cases, due to serious impact on the self-esteem of the VICTIM, they don’t speak about it to anyone, hoping that they’ll forget with time but that doesn’t happen, which probably leads to intense hatred and paranoia for EVERYONE that looks at them or touches them, even accidentally. Try imagining living your life thinking that everyone you see wanted to utterly mutilate your identity and then blame you for “inviting” that and being shunned away from the society, not because of pity, but disgust.
3. I read this on a Tumblr post, “Rape is not about sex, it’s about violence.” The culprit seeks power, not pleasure. In his/her mind, pleasure takes a backseat and power by acquisition takes precedence. The culprit sees the victim as a property, a prize to be won, a source for a display of his/her power.
4. Men are raped by women, but due to the patriarchal society’s standards for men, they’re not “supposed” to show any kind of emotions that might make them weak i.e. like “women”. And even if one confesses this crime, it’s laughed off. Why? Because rape is seen as a crime of passion. The act of raping has this misconception that it has to do with lust or need for sex or “bad luck”, where it is about, power, anger, frustration, self-humiliation, paranoia, delusions. It is NOT about sex. Like AT ALL.
5. Instead of sympathizing with the victim or justifying the culprit, why don’t we all try to bring this crime to light for what it REALLY is and get busy spreading awareness of what it is NOT.
#ThingsToRemember: When a person says NO, it means NO. No matter who says it.
No doesn’t mean, “Please try to change my mind.” It means absolutely not. Get that really clear. There is nothing wrong with any type of sex unless it’s not consensual. Then, it’s rape. No debate.
Misconceptions about rape lead to extreme misogyny and Misandry. Men blame women, women blame men, women blame women, men blame men. Everyone is busy pointing blame to the gender and not the culprit and the culprit is being defended instead of being utterly destroyed. And not just the culprit but the whole root of this crime and the blame should be placed precisely NOT on the gender of the culprit, but the crime.
Blame the crime, blame the culprit. Don’t blame the gender, don’t blame the clothes, don’t blame it on night or day. Fight against the crime, not each other on who or what is to blame for the crime. It’s a mental disorder and mental disorders don’t know any gender, race or colour. Don’t assign them one. Please.
Oshin Ahlawat is a young poet and writer based in New Delhi, India. “I believe people who write are like tornados and cyclones. We wreck a lot of lives; for better or worse. It all depends on the people who read our work. They decide where the damage is going to be; the heart or the mind and whether it’s going to be for the good or for worse. I wish to give them the choice to decide that. I’m just going to focus on doing what I want”, she says.