Hello, ripples of the universe! Once again, sorry for the long wait. I work 2.5 jobs and it is a struggle sometimes to write, though I do miss you. Lies, some will say. But it is true. I love writing for people to read. I enjoy exploring humanity, and this series that I am doing has been one of my favorite pass times. So, I do miss you.
The Dalia Lama (I am guessing that it is this one), said:
Why this quote, today I want to talk to you about rape and how it can cause someone to break, it can cause someone to lose the one thing makes us… well, us. Humanity.
Rape is a horrible crime. And it effects the victims for the rest of their lives. Depression (13 Reasons Why: Cheesecake and Depression) and post-traumatic stress disorder (topic coming up) are common conditions among rape victims.
Numerous rape victims have suicidal thoughts, and many die by suicide. Is it still suicide when your soul has already been killed?
“Through tape number 12 Bryce Walker who broke my soul.”
Sexual assaults are, unfortunately, extremely common. In the U.S., a sexual assault occurs every two minutes.
Most people are not raped by a stranger; Hannah and Jessica are both separately raped by Bryce. According to RAINN (Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network), seven out of ten rapes are committed by someone the victim knows. Sexual assaults of those under age 18 are committed by someone the victim knows 93% of the time.
One in five women will be raped at some point in their lives, one in 71 men will. Those are just the numbers that are reported.
Rape remains the most under-reported crime. Neither Hannah nor Jessica reported their rapes to the police. 63% of sexual assaults go unreported; 0.6% of rapists are incarcerated, RAINN reports.
About 44% or rape victims are under the age of 18. 15% of rape victims are under the age of 12. 93% of the rape victims age 18 and under knew the rapist. Of these rapists, 34.2% were family members and 58.7% were acquaintances.
Rape has long-term emotional consequences that can lead to suicide. It is quite common for rape victims to suffer from depression. And untreated depression is the number one cause for suicide.
“I am human? Real, geez… I wish she would have known that.”
About 33% of rape victims have suicidal thought. About 13% of rape victims will attempt suicide. Suicide attempts may occur years after the rape.
“I still think about it, every signal day. And I know… deep in my heart that I will end my life. I don’t know how or when, but maybe one day when I, like he did, forget that I have a soul.”
Rape can have a ripple effect on the victim. My post talks about a friend of mine’s rape, and his struggle with depression, suicide, PTSD, and drugs and alcohol. Though I couldn’t tell all of his story, and though I know he hides the ripples very well, he does still struggle, and I know he will struggle of a long time. Please click the link to read his story.
13 Reasons Why explores the ripples of rape and rape culture. In the first episode, Hannah has a late-night rendezvous at a nearby park with Justin Foley, her high school crush. It’s tame. She goes down a slide, he snaps a picture, they share a kiss. But the next day, we see Justin flaunting the photo to an all-male crew. The shot of Hannah he took is directly up her skirt, giving an innocent moment illicit pretense. Justin’s friends eagerly share the deceptive shot with the rest of the school, which is enough for Liberty High to brand Hannah the class slut, making her the target of rampant sexual harassment in its halls. A 2011 report found that nearly half of middle and high school students surveyed experienced some form of sexual harassment — unwanted sexual behavior that includes verbal or written comments, gestures, displaying pictures or images, or physical coercion.
Additional research from the University of Kent shows there is a direct relation between the sexual objectification of girls and aggression towards them, and that the objectification-aggression link can start as early as the teenage years. I worked in a preschool and this one little boy started to treat all the girls like they were dogs, yes dogs. When I told him to stop he called me a dog, too.
My question: WHAT IS GOING ON?
There is a difference between being sorry having pity. See to me victims of rape feel like they lose their humanity and I am so sorry for them. Sincerely, I am sorry, and I know it was not my fault but I am sorry they were hurt. (YOU ARE STILL HUMAN!) It is those who rape that I pity. I pity that you, deep down, hate yourself so much that you take it out on others. I pity that you miss your humanity so much that you try and take it from others. I pity that you are not human.
But Lesley, sometimes they didn’t say no, so it must be yes, right?
Answer: where you dropped on the head or are you just that stupid.
When Hannah is raped by Bryce, she doesn’t say “no,” but there is no ambiguity about what happened. She doesn’t object with words, but with her body. She tries to leave the hot tub before the assault. She physically resists. When Jessica is raped by Bryce, she is under the influence of alcohol and practically unconscious, unable to give consent and incapable of objecting.
Rape is a one-time thing and the person should just get over it, right? Rape is a massive rock dumped into a body of water that is the person’s life. It has ripples on the surface and underneath the water. After being raped, Jessica begins abusing alcohol, and she didn’t even know that she was raped, but her body and her mind new something was wrong; her soul knew it was broken.
Jessica was able to cope, in some ways better than Hannah, because in the show’s final episode, Hannah commits suicide. That isn’t uncommon, according to the CDC, the likelihood of suicidal thoughts increases after sexual violence. Rape victims are 4.1 times more likely to have contemplated suicide and they are 13 times more likely to have attempted suicide.
So, what do we do about it? We become ripples, darlings! I don’t want to say that we stand up and teach our boys that women are human and not sex objects (that would be a start), but we need to, as a society, stand up and stop raping other humans. Always be kind.
If a friend tells you they’ve been sexually assaulted or abused, be supportive, avoid judgement and encourage them to get help.
Be a positive ripple in a world full of negative ones.