The Sociological Cinema
There was actually research that was done that found that women who used an “I have a boyfriend/husband” excuse to reject unwanted sexual attention and harassment by their bosses were more likely to be left alone than those who used any other excuse (including “I’m not interested”)
Because men respect another man’s property (and that’s how they see us) than a woman’s autonomy.
I used to wear a fake engagement ring to work everyday and that still wouldn’t stop a lot of the guys that would try to get me to go out with them
Male privilege is “I have a boyfriend” being the only thing that can actually stop someone from hitting on you because they respect another man more than they respect your rejection/lack of interest.
Seven years ago, a man raped me repeatedly and beat me. He tried to get me pregnant against my will so he could have a hold on me for the rest of my life. He choked me so hard I passed out. He publicly shamed and humiliated me. He brought me out with him to buy drugs and when that didn’t work he tried to sell me for heroin and meth on the streets. He made me panhandle for money, he kept my gas tank on empty, left the headlights on overnight so the battery would die in a Wal-Mart parking lot within walking distance of our house and had me sit on the trunk and pathetically ask strangers for money. He told me that I was useless and that I should kill myself. And then he tried to do it for me.
I only told a few people what was going on when it was happening, and one of them was the girlfriend of a coworker of his. The night before I was planning to leave, he figured out something was up and he took my car keys and drove me to Hot August Nights in Reno. This was at the very end of July in 2006, it might have been August 1st. I was 18 years old. We spend some time looking at the cars, and by we I mean he spent some time looking at the cars and I spent my time fervently texting salvation. Someone who was willing to give me an escape and made good on the offer. This new person’s time in my life has come and gone, but they were my safe haven.
When the man grew tired of tricked out muscle cars and Budweiser girls bouncing their boobs at everyone who so much as looked in their direction, he found me again and brought me to a strange apartment, where his coworker lived. He wanted to drink that night and we had no money.
No, that’s wrong. I had no money. He never had a job or source of income. Everything that was paid for was done so by me.
We split up at the apartment complex. He heads outside to drink with his work friend, leaving me in the apartment with the girlfriend. She’d consumed half a bottle of peppermint schnapps and worked up the nerve to tell me, a stranger and partner to the man her boyfriend was doing man shit with, that she hated her life and wanted to leave, but she was scared. We were both nervously looking at the door, waiting for the men to come back. When they didn’t after a while, the dams broke and we did some shots and cried together. I told her everything. We promised each other we were going to get the hell out of dodge. She told me to never let a man touch me like that ever again in my life, made me promise I would fight for myself. I told her she was beautiful and worthwhile. We deserved to be happy.
We didn’t even know each others names, and by the time we’d gotten to this point, only twenty minutes had passed. The men came storming back up and the man told me to get in the car, we were going home.
He raped me anally that night. I’d already broken a promise to the strange girl. I wasn’t going to break another one.
In the morning I left the state, alone.
I could write for ever about how I have spent years building myself back up, recovering, blah blah blah. Truth is, you can dress up a turd in a tuxedo but at the end of the day, it’s still a turd.
I realized that I am that turd today when I was looking up the old address to that house. I’d blocked out the memory of living there, but I needed it for my records. It should have been a safe bet to search for the house without his name ever coming anywhere near to the search, because I was the one on the joke of a lease and I only lived there two months. He only “stayed” there for one. The house was in one of my coworkers name, I was paying her cash. It should have been a safe search. But wouldn’t you know, out of all of the people who have lived in that house since the day it was built, his name is the one tied to the property. And with that name, came a Facebook page. An open to the public, active Facebook page.
Of course I looked.
He’s happy, healthy, has custody of his daughter, had another child, sober, and most devastatingly, still walking free in this country. He thinks his anger problems are funny. He auditioned for a reality television show about it.
I’m not going to julienne my skinny little chicken arms or walk into traffic over it, so sit the fuck down.
It’s just painful when you actually realize that life really isn’t fair, nothing is fair, I’m still that dumb-shit 18 year old girl, still too scared to take control of my life back, and he’s still a cruel bastard walking free to rape and beat his way through the United States.
EMPTIED GESTURES BY HEATHER HANSEN
LA, New Orleans-based Artist Heather Hansen (tumblr) - "Emptying Gestures is an experiment in kinetic drawing. In this series, I am searching for ways to download my movement directly onto paper, emptying gestures from one form to another and creating something new in the process."
Photos by Bryan Tarnowski
Movies That Can Be Described With The Same Sentence
it was the last one that killed me