• Activity
  • Votes
  • Comments
  • New
  • All activity
  • Showing only topics with the tag "sexual assault". Back to normal view
    1. How do I talk to my girlfriend about her past sexual assault?

      I've been in a relationship with my current girlfriend for almost a year now, and things seem rough right now because of an issue we're having. My girlfriend is upset with me because she thinks I...

      I've been in a relationship with my current girlfriend for almost a year now, and things seem rough right now because of an issue we're having.

      My girlfriend is upset with me because she thinks I don't care about her past trauma. She's told me, very roughly, what she's gone through, and I told her that whenever she's ready to talk about it, I absolutely will. But according to her, the last time she tried to initiate talking about it, I told her that I had no idea what to say. And this upset her and stonewalled the discussion.

      I don't doubt that happened. My problem is, is that if she were to try again, I might just very well do the same thing. I have zero idea on how to handle something of this severity. How do I ask her to talk about it? Is that something I should be asking? What does someone even say when given this information? I am not equipped whatsoever to deal with information of this magnitude and I'm at a loss. How do I let her know that I really do care about her, and am 100% willing to listen to what she has to say? I worry I'm too far in the doghouse to even make use of any of this advice, but any help is immensely appreciated

      Edit in case anyone was interested: We talked and we're okay :). She told me what she went through and I didn't handle it nearly as bad as I worried I was going to. Thanks everyone for your kind words and helpful advice.

      17 votes
    2. Social media allegations, the spirit of due process, and you!

      It's hard to have a neutral position or tone about sexual assault. I think we can all agree that sexual assault is bad and should be punished when credible evidence exists, and I think most of us...

      It's hard to have a neutral position or tone about sexual assault. I think we can all agree that sexual assault is bad and should be punished when credible evidence exists, and I think most of us can also agree to the corollary that it's hard to prove allegations of sexual assault on a good day, let alone 10, 15, 20, or 30 years after the event happened (which is after the statute of limitations expires in many states anyway).

      So from this starting point (sexual misconduct = bad, proving sexual misconduct = hard), let's talk about that lovely and unique junction we've been finding ourselves in, in the current year: (1) the use of social media to amplify stories of sexual misconduct and (2) to organize economic punishment of famous persons who have engaged in such conduct (when it is credible enough).

      Let us take the case of Kevin Spacey. After Anthony Rapp publicly accused Spacey of sexual advances while Rapp was 14 years old, about a dozen similar stories surfaced to show a fairly similar trajectory of behavior. Even if nothing ever crosses the line into "rape," a clearer picture seems to emerge from these myriad stories of a pretty damn creepy, repressed dude. Spacey lost several acting jobs as a direct reaction to these stories.

      We might also look to Al Franken for further insight. In this case, eight women to my knowledge have separately accused Franken of violating behavior, with one pretty outrageous photo as proof of the most famous initiating accusation.

      There are plenty of other serial predators that have been exposed in the last year and change too. Let me be clear on this: I see exposing serial predators as a good thing. I hope you do too. There can be a problem of believing claims too quickly, which I think we're all aware of and need to be careful of, but as far as exposing and at minimum economically punishing serial abusers, I think that's pretty much a good for society as a whole, especially when done through legal channels (i.e., a Hot Cosby).

      So to the questions:

      1. How should we as a society deal the increased ability to share horrific stories of sexual misconduct and abuse?
      2. How can our governments adjust to better handle cases of unaddressed sexual assault?
      3. How should we individually react when someone we know (famous or otherwise) is accused of sexual misconduct? Along these lines, should we make economic choices based on the allegations that surface about some person?
      16 votes