Imagine yourself lying peacefully in your bed in the middle of the night when you hear a sharp scraping sound outside your window. You ignore it at first, but your attention is sparked when you hear it get louder and then stop suddenly. The creaking sounds of the floorboards of your house fill your ears and your heart begins to pound when you realize that an intruder has entered your home. Your body becomes frigid and your breath quickens as you squeeze your eyes shut, praying the stranger leaves you alone. The door to your bedroom is slowly opened and your eyes shoot open as you watch a shadowy figure cross to your bed. You can feel your heart pounding in your chest.
The figure throws themselves on top of your body and air fills your lungs as you scream. A hand is thrown on top of your mouth and it presses your head into your pillow. Your legs kick and you squirm, trying to free yourself from underneath the person. They put all of their weight on you as they shove you around, trying to keep you still underneath them. You hear the vivid sound of a zipper coming undone and tears begin to pour down your face when you realize what is happening to you. Your hands push and shove against the person, but they do not help as you realize there is no stopping this intruder. They are on a mission and they are succeeding.
Many women find themselves in situations where they are taken advantage of. Many women are raped in their lifetime. They aren’t always raped by a stranger; women are more likely to be raped by someone they know. Not only can rape be dangerous, but it is also emotionally traumatic. No one wants to be forced into a situation of terror and pain, regardless if it is with a stranger or with someone you love.
The word consent is defined as “permission for something to happen or agreement to do something”, therefore consensual sex is only able to happen with one verbally stated word: yes.
So, then, why do some people claim that women are simply asking to be raped?
Some people say that it is the way particular women dress that qualifies them as candidates of rape. They dress that way because they want to be raped. Because they choose to wear a low-cut shirt or a short skirt, those women are asking to be raped. Whereas some people can see this as a logical reason, consider this: women are sexualized much more than men are. Men and women both have breasts, but for some reason the breasts of women are seen as a sexual body part. It is seen as improper or, for better terms, trashy for women to show cleavage or “side-boob” while men can walk down the street without a shirt on and receive little to no criticism.
Maybe women are more sexualized because men tend to think more about sex than women. From traditional pinups to Marilyn Monroe to Kim Kardashian, women have been sexed up for the pleasure of men for decades, possibly even centuries. It is the image that is created for these men, which lead men and society as a whole to believe that women that dress in any shadow of that image are more sexual than other women or “whores”.
Judging by the way they dress, this is why some people believe that women are “asking” to be raped. This is not the only reason for this argument, but it is the one that is most concerning to me. Women should feel free to dress however they like in public without being worried about being raped behind closed doors. No one dresses up for a night on town with friends hoping to get raped.
With all of that said, women do not enjoy being raped. Unless she says yes, she does not want to have sex with you. If she is crying and screaming, she does not want to be in bed with you. Even if she has stopped fighting and given up with tears draining from her eyes, she still does not want to have sex with you.
This is a controversial topic that needs to be resolved. Not only is it unimaginable for women to endure the pain and fear of being raped, but it is even further unthinkable to hear people claim that women want to be raped. Coming from a woman, I do not want to be raped. I only want to have sex if I say that, yes, I do want to have sex.
The definition of rape is simple. It is not consensual sex. Regardless if you are assaulted by a stranger, by a friend, or by your partner, your absence of the word “yes” opens the doors to a scary and unnatural world of rape. No one asks wants to be raped, no one deserves rape, and, most importantly, no one asks to be raped.