[Trigger warning: abuse, sexual abuse, mention of rape.]
There’s many aspects of relationships, both good and bad. Obviously, we lean towards having relationships where the ratio of good to bad favors the good side over the bad. Sometimes, however, that doesn’t always happen, and people can end up in abusive, controlling and manipulative. One of the ways people can cause relationships to become any one of these is to use sex as a means of abuse, control, or manipulation.
These kinds of relationships are sometimes hard to spot, even if you’re the one in the relationship. We often let certain things our partners do slide, simply because they’re our partners, and we don’t even realize it until it affects us consciously. The first thing in breaking a sexually controlling, abusive, or manipulative relationship is to recognize that you’re in one. (Please note that this is for people of ALL gender identities, not just those who identify as male/female.)
Does your partner often ask you to do things sexually multiple times, even though you’ve stated you don’t want to, and doesn’t stop until you do them?
Do you often have sex or do things sexually with your partner out of guilt (say, if you’re not “in the mood,” but they are, and you do it to please them without truly wanting to or consenting)?
Do you often lie to your partner about being satisfied or wanting to engage sexually because you are afraid that they will get angry with you?
Does your partner often get angry with you when don’t want to do sexual things to the point where you’re afraid or threatened?
Has your partner ever guilted you into having sex with them for something they think you did wrong?
Do you feel like you have to have to sex with your partner in order to keep your relationship?
Does your partner say things like “you don’t love me if you do this” or “if you don’t do this I’ll___?”
Are you often anxious or afraid when your partner makes sexual advances?
Of course, these questions are not the only ones to ask yourself and review, but anything similar is something to consider. A yes to even one may indicate that you’re in a sexually abusive relationship, and addressing that is the first step.
The next is to proceed with what you’re going to do about it, and how safe you are doing so.
If you’re in a relationship where your partner is violent, uses violence during sex, or is continuously threatening violence or shows excessive anger, approaching the person directly may not be safe for you (and even if it is not, if you feel like you would be in danger in any way, do not approach the person directly.) If you can talk to a friend, a family member, co-worker, anyone who can help, please do so. There are many hotlines out there for people who are experiencing abusive relationships and who need help getting out.
If the relationship you’re in is NOT a physically violent one (and I would consider spousal or partner rape violent, so the above guide will pertain to those situations) and you feel safe with approaching the person about how they’ve been handling your relationship, then do so. It can be hard, rough, and emotional, but nobody deserves to be in an sexually abusive abusive relationship, even if the abuser doesn’t realize they’re being abusive.
The biggest deterrent you will probably face in getting yourself out of an abusive relationship, or changing your abusive relationship into a non-abusive one, is people close to you telling you to “just let things work themselves out” or your partner trying to convince you there’s no problem or filling you with false promises of change while keeping the behavior the same. It can be hard to get yourself out of your situation when so many people are telling you to “roll with the tide” or that you’re overrating, or when you’re partner is using your emotions to keep you where you are. You always have to remember that, no matter what, YOUR feelings matter, and if you’re in a place where you are being harmed, controlled, or manipulated, it is your express RIGHT to not be subjected to such treatment.
The challenge: Don’t use any gendered bathrooms or change rooms for the month of April.
What are “gendered bathrooms”? Gendered bathrooms are designated for “men” or “women” by a sign. This challenges includes ALL multi-stall and single-stall washrooms, and the bathrooms at work, schools, libraries, bars/restaurants, and everywhere, really.
There are multiple purposes for this challenge:
1) To give people who don’t find going to gendered bathrooms a difficult/unsafe experience a small idea of what it is like for trans and gender variant people to navigate this world. Hopefully, with some real life experience, you will have a broader understanding of how gendered this world really is. But,
DOING THIS DOES NOT GIVE YOU AUTHORITY TO SAY WHAT IT IS LIKE TO BE TRANS OR GENDER VARIANT.
2) To inspire people to fight for more gender neutral bathrooms.
Tips: - Don’t drink a lot of liquid if you are leaving the house for long periods of time - Try to figure out where some gender neutral bathrooms are in your town/city, and plan your day around using a gender neutral bathroom. - Remember, you can use gendered bathrooms again in May. Some people can’t.
And, even if you really have to go to the bathroom, try to not see gendered bathrooms as a possible place to go.
If you are interested, feel free to write your experiences down and send them to email@example.com. With your permission, they will be included in a zine on the topic of gendered bathrooms.
We also recommend fighting for gender neutral bathrooms in one (or more) public space(s). Often the fight for this aspect of bathroom accessibility is only fought for by trans and gender variant people; It would be nice if other people fought for it too.
It would be an interesting caveat to add if you can’t find a gender neutral bathroom, you have to use the one you normally wouldn’t use, but that could cause some actual violence (which happens to trans* people on a regular basis, obviously, but for a thing like this that’s probably not the best ever)
I guess if you want the full experience you could add that to it?
The state of my genitals and unconfirmed karyotype status as well as the amount of pink, long hair, and dresses I was raised with indicate that I am a woman and allowed in women’s spaces.
Despite my being a man.
Oh, yeah, that totally makes sense. Allow men into women’s spaces but don’t allow women into women’s spaces because those women may currently or may have at one time had a penis or some other form of “unacceptable” genitals. Perfect sense.
I’m comparing the speed of which humans communicate in todays world vs the 1900’s. This experiment is going to last three days, so from today, Saturday March 24th, 12AM EST, to Monday 11:59PM EST.
I am taking into account my amount of follows now (188) and how many I will have on Monday. I will reblog this myself once per day. I have a guess at how many reblogs this will get but I will keep that a secret for now.
I can’t believe this needs to be said again (less than a week later), but you can’t call yourself a “feminist” or for the equal treatment of all genders if the only genders you recognize are cis women and cis men.
Change your language. Stop labeling one’s biological sex as their gender. If you’re referring to a certain topic, like birth control, how about you talk about “all people that may use birth control” instead of just saying “women”? By labeling all people with certain anatomical structures as one gender or another you’re misgendering a large percentage of Trans* people. Furthermore, by deciding our gender for us, you take away our basic right to autonomy. Learn some gender-neutral pronouns. There’s tons. Seriously. Realize that the issues cis females face are often also issues that Tran* individuals face. You might be upset about a specific problem that cis females face -and you have every right to be- but you don’t have to right to step on the backs of Trans* individuals when they try to voice their views on the issue. If you’re not sure about whether something is offensive or not, look it up. Google can be your best friend in situations like that. Don’t just assume that since you don’t take offense to it, Trans* people won’t.
Please just think before you talk/post. Trans* people count on your support in the fight against oppression, and you’re definitely not helping us by erasing us.
Today, it came to the fore that a user had been listing the addresses of LGBTQ people with the threat of outing them to their parents/peers. Some people reported them to tumblr, and tumblr sent a standard response saying they can’t remove the content due to “free speech” despite such action breaking their TOS (which they’ve just updated, you’ll note). It was pretty clear they didn’t even read the complaint before deciding it was a “free speech” matter.
The blog in question is now gone, whether by tumblr’s hand or not. But the likelihood that the person who made is has been IP-banned is very slim. If you receive any word that any such blog begins operating again, spread the word so mass-reporting (firstname.lastname@example.org) can take place. It is the only method that seems to make tumblr pay attention.
Tumblr must do more to protect minority communities on tumblr who use this space. It is in the interest of their business, and in the interest of basic human decency to tackle threats of outing, violence, or hate speech. Hate speech is not free speech. Outing people is not free speech.
Please do not ask me to explain the detail of what happened, you can read about it at these links (and follow the reblog strings from there for more commentary): one, two.
It is clear that we have to demand that tumblr support actually supports us.
Related note: signal boost for POCharassed, a new blog that documents racist abuse and harassment that tumblr support isn’t tackling.