Just saw this on Facebook

(160 Posts)
shrinkingnora Sat 26-Jan-13 15:18:15

Apologies if this has previously been discussed but a friend has just posted the following on Facebook and I wondered what others thought of it. I would like nice pithy response but am struggling to put it into words. It has really depressed me.


(PLS TAKE TIME TO READ THIS. It may save a life.) Click Share Button to share it on your Wall.

Rapists are predators. Period. Predators never let victims know when they will attack ... or that they literally "hunt" for a victim ... By following these tips, you can make your world a little safer.

It seems that a lot of attackers use some tactic to get away with violence. Not many people know how to take care of themselves when faced with such a situation. Everyone should read this especially each and every girl in this world.


A group of rapists and date rapists in prison were interviewed on what they look for in a potential victim and here are some interesting facts:

1] Understand that your hairstyle could benefit an attacker:
Ponytails and long hair are the number one styles rapists seek because long hair and ponytails are easy to grab. Women with short hair are not common targets. But there are exceptions.

2] The second thing men look for is clothing. They will look for women whose clothing is easy to remove quickly. Many of them carry scissors around to cut clothing.

3] They also look for women using their cell phone, searching through their purse or doing other activities while walking because they are off guard and can be easily overpowered.

4] Be aware of your surroundings at all times:
The places women are abducted from / attacked at /targeted by attempted rapists are grocery store parking lots, office parking lots/garages, public restrooms. These men are predators, so view your surroundings carefully. If you are in a parking lot and feel someone is following you, start making noise - talk to yourself loudly, talk to an imaginary person, or pretend to talk on your cell phone. The louder the potential victim, the more the predator is apt to freeze.

5] Use your loudest voice if you have any doubts.
Remember, its better to be considered crazy, than to keep quiet to avoid weird looks.

6] Work on being assertive:
If somebody is giving you unwanted attention, tell them to back off. There is no need to be polite when somebody is making unwanted sexual advances.

7] The thing about these men is that they are looking to grab a woman and quickly move her to a second location where they don't have to worry about getting caught.

8] If you put up any kind of a fight at all, they get discouraged because it only takes a minute or two for them to realize that going after you isn't worth it because it will be time-consuming.

9] These men said they would not pick on women who have umbrellas, or other similar objects that can be used from a distance, in their hands.

10] Keys are not a deterrent because you have to get really close to the attacker to use them as a weapon. So, the idea is to convince these guys you're not worth it.


1] If someone is following behind you on a street or in a garage or with you in an elevator or stairwell, look them in the face and ask them a question, like what time is it, or make general small talk: can't believe it is so cold out here, we're in for a bad winter. Now that you've seen their faces and could identify them in a line- up, you lose appeal as a target.

2] If someone is coming toward you, hold out your hands in front of you and yell Stop or Stay back! Most of the rapists this man talked to said they'd leave a woman alone if she yelled or showed that she would not be afraid to fight back. Again, they are looking for an EASY target.

3] If you carry pepper spray (this instructor was a huge advocate of it and carries it with him wherever he goes,) yelling I HAVE PEPPER SPRAY and holding it out will be a deterrent.

4] If someone grabs you, you can't beat them with strength but you can do it by outsmarting them. If you are grabbed around the waist from behind, pinch the attacker either under the arm between the elbow and armpit or in the upper inner thigh - HARD. One woman in a class this guy taught told him she used the underarm pinch on a guy who was trying to date rape her and was so upset she broke through the skin and tore out muscle strands the guy needed stitches. Try pinching yourself in those places as hard as you can stand it; it really hurts.

5] After the initial hit, always go for the groin. I know from a particularly unfortunate experience that if you slap a guy's parts it is extremely painful. You might think that you'll anger the guy and make him want to hurt you more, but the thing these rapists told our instructor is that they want a woman who will not cause him a lot of
trouble. Start causing trouble, and he's out of there.

6] When the guy puts his hands up to you, grab his first two fingers and bend them back as far as possible with as much pressure pushing down on them as possible. The instructor did it to me without using much pressure, and I ended up on my knees and both knuckles cracked

7] Of course the things we always hear still apply. Always be aware of your surroundings, take someone with you if you can and if you see any odd behavior, don't dismiss it, and go with your instincts. You may feel little silly at the time, but you'd feel much worse if the guy really was trouble.

8] If a rapist is in your car and is sitting in the passenger seat with a weapon to you, they will tell you to go somewhere where they are less likely to be witnessed. Whatever you do, don't follow their directions. Put on your seat belt, then drive into something stationary, like a dumpster or lamp post. The airbag and seat belt will keep you alive, and the crash will draw attention. It is better to be in a car accident than get raped and possibly killed. Stay calm and try to surprise the rapist.

9] Understand that Vans are the most common vehicles used in rapes. Rapists will park next to the driver's side and, as you are trying to get in, they will pull you into the van. If there is a van on the driver's side of your car, go in through the passenger's door. If there are vans on both sides, go back to where you were and get someone like a security guard to walk you to your car. Don't park any place that feels unsafe.

10] Practice being careful when going into your house or car because someone could easily push you in and lock the door behind you. Be aware of your surroundings; carry your keys ready in your hand and look around you before opening the door.

11] Keep personal information private. Don't advertise your info verbally or on the Internet. Also, be very wary of meeting up with anyone whom you meet on the Internet. There is never a good reason to meet up with a person whom you have never met in person, or who talks you into meeting-up when you are hesitant. If you think you must do so, bring someone else, preferably a friend who is older and meet the person in a public place.

12] Notice and leave identifying marks. A large bite mark on their face, punctured eyeball, deeply scratched leg, ripped out piercing etc. is easily identifiable, as are memorable tattoos, etc. Think kill. Go for weak spots like eyes (poke hard), nose (hard upward motion with the lower part of your open hand) genitals (grab really tightly and squeeze or punch hard) etc. to make sure the person's hands aren't free to punch or hold on to you and you can run for it. If you are in a place where you can't run, notice your surroundings and leave a mark on them if you can. Rapists have been caught because their victims left identifiable teeth marks, nail marks, or DNA in the cars or rooms where they were assaulted.


I know you are smart enough to know these pointers but there will be some, where you will go "hmm I must remember that" After reading, forward it to someone you care about, never hurts to be careful in
this crazy world we live in.

1. Tip from Tae Kwon Do: The elbow is the strongest point on your body. If you are close enough to use it, do it.

2. Learned this from a tourist guide to New Orleans: if a robber asks for your wallet and/or purse, DO NOT HAND IT TO HIM. Toss it away from you.... chances are that he is more interested in your wallet and/or purse than you and he will go for the wallet/purse. RUN LIKE MAD IN THE OTHER DIRECTION!

3. If you are ever thrown into the trunk of a car: Kick out the back tail lights and stick your arm out the hole and start waving like crazy. The driver won't see you but everybody else will. This has saved lives.

4. Women have a tendency to get into their cars after shopping, eating, working, etc., and just sit (doing their checkbook, or making a list, etc. DON'T DO THIS! The predator will be watching you, and this is the perfect opportunity for him to get in on the passenger side, put a gun to your head, and tell you where to go. AS SOON AS YOU CLOSE the DOORS, LEAVE.

5. A few notes about getting into your car in a parking lot, or parking garage:

a. Be aware: look around your car as someone may be hiding at the passenger side, peek into your car, inside the passenger side floor, and in the back seat. (DO THIS TOO BEFORE RIDING A TAXI CAB).

b. If you! U are parked next to a big van, enter your car from the passenger door. Most serial killers attack their victims by pulling them into their vans while the women are attempting to get into their cars.

c. Look at the car parked on the driver's side of your vehicle, and the passenger side. If a male is sitting alone in the seat nearest your car, you may want to walk back into the mall, or work, and get a guard /policeman to walk you back out. IT IS ALWAYS BETTER TO BE SAFE THAN SORRY. (And better paranoid than dead.)

6. ALWAYS take the elevator instead of the stairs. (Stairwells are horrible places to be alone and the perfect crime spot).

7. If the predator has a gun and you are not under his control, ALWAYS RUN! The predator will only hit you (a running target) 4 in 100 times; and even then, it most likely WILL NOT be a vital organ. RUN!

8. As women, we are always trying to be sympathetic: STOP IT! It may get you raped, or killed. Ted Bundy, the serial killer, was a good-looking, well educated man, who ALWAYS played on the sympathies of unsuspecting women. He walked with a cane, or a limp, and often asked "for help" into his vehicle or with his vehicle, which is when he abducted his next victim.

I'd like you to forward this to all the women you know. It may save a life. A candle is not dimmed by lighting another candle. I was going to send this to the ladies only, but guys, if you love your mothers, wives, sisters, daughters, etc., you may want to pass it onto them, as well.

Send this to any woman you know that may need to be reminded that the world we live in has a lot of crazies in it and it's better safe than sorry.

‘Helping hands are better than Praying Lips’ – give us your helping hand.

Take care.

Smudging Sat 26-Jan-13 15:25:30

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

vesuvia Sat 26-Jan-13 15:42:54

In response to
8] It is better to be in a car accident than get raped and possibly killed."

In the real world, it is not an either/or situation.

For example:

Man rapes woman injured in road crash.

MrsFionaCharming Sat 26-Jan-13 15:45:40

I'm confused by points 3 &4. Rapists target women who use their cell phones. So if you think someone is following you, you should use your cell phone?

I hate this kind of thing. Because it shouldn't be the woman's responsibility to know this stuff. But at the same time, surely anything to help keep safe is good?

NormaStanleyFletcher Sat 26-Jan-13 15:51:22

What a load of crap.

Most women are raped by people they know, sometimes in their own homes.

It is perpetuating the myth that if we just behaved in a certain way we would be safe from rape.

And if you don't follow the instructions you are asking for it presumably? For having not taken enough care or modifying your behaviour enough

vesuvia Sat 26-Jan-13 15:51:52

In response to

"4] Be aware of your surroundings at all times:
The places women are abducted from / attacked at /targeted by attempted rapists are grocery store parking lots, office parking lots/garages, public restrooms."

At the very least, this should be changed to:
The places women are abducted from / attacked at /targeted by attempted rapists include grocery store parking lots, office parking lots/garages, public restrooms and their own homes, in other words, anywhere.

I've heard of a rape that occurred on a traffic island in the middle of a very busy main road during rush hour.

vesuvia Sat 26-Jan-13 15:55:45

I think one of the many problems with these simplistic how-to-prevent-rape checklists is that even rapists have very little idea of how bad other rapists can be.

ecclesvet Sat 26-Jan-13 16:06:22

I don't like victim-blaming, and I also don't like people who rail against risk management tips by labelling them victim-blaming.

ForkInTheForeheid Sat 26-Jan-13 16:06:34

You could probably summarise that into two points really:
1. Be afraid
2. Stay in your homes
I know it doesn't explicitly state that, quite the opposite in fact but it is designed to induce a state of fear and vulnerability in women who read it. It might be more appropriate to append it with statistical likelihoods of stranger abduction/rape/murder, y'know, just to put it into context.

Also this: According to the 2009/10 BCS, most (79%) victims in incidents of stranger violence were men. In nearly three-quarters (73%) of incidents of domestic violence the victims were women (Table 3.01)." from this document


So really these "protect yourself it's a dangerous world out there" lists should be directed at young men.

ForkInTheForeheid Sat 26-Jan-13 16:07:51

sorry, forgot to sort the link:

Crime in England and Wales 2009-10

MidnightMasquerader Sat 26-Jan-13 18:57:42

Well, into 3 points really, to be fair... One targeting the other 50% of the population.

3. Men: try not to rape people.

lemonmuffin Sat 26-Jan-13 18:58:52

Excellent advice. I've printed it out and am distributing it to my friends and my daughters friends.

JustAHolyFool Sat 26-Jan-13 19:05:56

Yes, Midnight, agreed.

Several of my friends have posted this.

This was my response:


Not facts after all. I don't think he interviewed rapists at all. I think it's some half-facts combined with urban myth and then used to advertise his self-defence classes.

Number 11 is probably common sense though.

amillionyears Sat 26-Jan-13 19:15:43

We are also discussing it on the thread below, if anyone is interested.


An urban legend

I saw this on FB too. It's utter nonsense as pointed out in my link and could prove dangerous. As the snopes author points out, fighting a sadistic rapist could potentially encourage him to become even more violent.

There is no cunning advice to dodge rape. We don't 'make' ourselves victims any more than a cyclist who is knocked off his bike by a lorry 'makes' himself a victim of a RTC.

FastidiaBlueberry Sat 26-Jan-13 19:19:30

These tips are much more effective:

Top 10 tips to stop rape

AwkwardSquad Sat 26-Jan-13 20:42:57

Fastidia, well said, those are the tips I posted when I saw the Facebook post in the OP. The info in the OP is the usual victim blaming woman controlling behaviour policing freedom reducing SHITE and I have had ENOUGH OF IT.

BertieBotts Sat 26-Jan-13 20:52:12

Sorry, but it's utter nonsense. If you really want to know some "signs" of a "potential rapist" then you'd do better to look at any red flag list for abuse and control, because anyone who can contemplate the idea of rape, consciously or not, is likely to be overriding consent and boundaries in other ways too.

Of course even this has massive holes (women are hugely socialised not to stand up for our boundaries, particularly at low levels.) but it makes more sense than worrying about the utterly tiny proportion of psychos who might be going around looking for women with ponytails. It's much more likely that you'll be raped by someone that you know. When a rapist has your trust, he doesn't need a ponytail.

And of course, Fastidia has the best one. There are posters up at my college saying, basically, if someone's drunk then they can't consent. Sad that it's needed - very glad that it's out there and being worded in this manner rather than "Don't get too drunk - you might get raped"

Charlizee Sat 26-Jan-13 21:04:45

Trying to give people advice on how to reduce the chances of being attacked is victim blaming remember. You should go campaign for this misogynist content to be removed.

Charlizee Sat 26-Jan-13 21:06:36

"These tips are much more effective:

Top 10 tips to stop rape

"3. If you pull over to help a woman whose car has broken down, remember not to rape her""

Please tell me this list is a joke?

BertieBotts Sat 26-Jan-13 21:10:40

hmm What do you think, Charlizee?

However they are pretty much an exact reversal of many common pieces of advice which are genuinely found (and well-meant!) on those "Don't get raped" lists.

On the subject I may re-post this excellent, if sobering blog post: Don't Get Raped

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Bagofmashings Sat 26-Jan-13 21:16:54

I also saw this on Facebook. What a load of crap. Whatever happened to ' teach not to rape not how not to be raped'?

AwkwardSquad Sat 26-Jan-13 21:29:26

Thanks for the link, Bertie. "Rape stops when rapists stop raping."

Charlizee Sat 26-Jan-13 21:34:35

What do I think?

I think telling men "don't rape" won't work.

The men who don't rape already know rape is wrong, they don't need to be told.

The men who are capable of rape are going to be so evil/messed up they aren't exactly going to listen or care if they are told not to rape.

I think it is a lot more complex than simply wagging your finger and saying "this is wrong don't do it".

shrinkingnora Sat 26-Jan-13 21:46:39

Thanks for all the replies. I am posting some of the above links on Facebook. I think the reason I dislike this so much is that there is a tiny bit of good advice in there that is hidden in lots of rubbish.

BertieBotts Sat 26-Jan-13 21:50:09

Well, sure. But you see how ludicrous the advice sounds when reversed?

Problem is also, that "men who are capable of rape" are not evil or messed up. They are normal, ordinary men who have an inflated sense of entitlement, which is entirely backed up by culture. Sometimes evil or messed up men rape, of course. But the majority of rapes are carried out by someone known to the rapist. People don't tend to hang out with blokes who are outwardly evil or messed up... it doesn't show.

This study was interesting - Comments from convicted rapists, and statements posted in lad's mags.

There was also a really interesting study posted on here ages ago where a group of men were asked "Have you ever raped anyone?" and of course they all said no. When the question was phrased in another way - have you ever had sex with anyone who was very drunk, have you ever had sex when you weren't really sure the other person was into it, etc - their answers were very different and they were not ashamed or had any inkling that this was wrong. I don't have the link to this one though.

BertieBotts Sat 26-Jan-13 21:57:02

I agree completely, BTW, that someone who goes out on the town with the express purpose of gaining sex by rape, knows exactly what it is they're doing, and is looking specifically for somebody vulnerable is not going to listen to a poster telling them rape is unacceptable. The part I disagree with is that I don't think that most rapes happen like that and I don't think that most rapists think like that at all.

Charlizee Sat 26-Jan-13 21:57:02

Say a man and woman are equally drunk and they engage in sex together. Have they raped each other?

BertieBotts Sat 26-Jan-13 21:59:54

No, because it's not possible for two people to simultaneously rape each other. Rape is about power and control. Hence - no way for it to be equal.

Yes it can still be rape if the man is drunk too. Yes a woman can sexually assault a man who is too drunk to consent. And of course it's extremely difficult to judge what has happened when both parties were that drunk and there were no witnesses. But drunkeness is not a defence, if one person has sex with another without their full consent.

BertieBotts Sat 26-Jan-13 22:00:43

And of course two drunk people can have equally consensual sex and regret it in the morning. But that's not really the situation we're talking about here...

Trekkie Sat 26-Jan-13 22:02:35

These things have been doing the rounds for yonks. I got this one years ago by email at work (pre facebook days). I remember it for the particularly helpful line:

1] Understand that your hairstyle could benefit an attacker:
Ponytails and long hair are the number one styles rapists seek because long hair and ponytails are easy to grab. Women with short hair are not common targets. But there are exceptions.

I mean what a fucking utterly pointless thing to write. And that is point number 1!!!

I emailed the guy back and asked him to stop sending me stuff like that - I mean it's not what you need at work is it - to get emails basically saying Do Not Forget You are PREY FGS. And what can you do about it? Cut all your hair off, of course! Although obviously that might not help anyway. FFS.

Can't think of anything pithy, though, sorry!

Charlizee Sat 26-Jan-13 22:02:58

So if two people (a man and a woman) are both equally drunk and have sex together no rape has been committed?

Are you saying a man can't be a rapist if he's drunk himself?

BertieBotts Sat 26-Jan-13 22:09:33

No. If a man and woman are both equally drunk and have equally consensual sex then no rape has been committed.

If a man and woman are equally drunk and the man rapes the woman then he has still raped her. Him being drunk is no defence. Him being too drunk to realise what he is doing is no defence. If she does not consent then it is rape.

BertieBotts Sat 26-Jan-13 22:09:58

Did you even read my post? confused

StewieGriffinsMom Sat 26-Jan-13 22:10:58

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Trekkie Sat 26-Jan-13 22:11:20

Drunken consensual sex happens all the time. It's kind of like a national hobby. I thought most people were aware of that. Are you not in the UK?

StewieGriffinsMom Sat 26-Jan-13 22:12:03

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

BertieBotts Sat 26-Jan-13 22:12:26

How could two people rape each other anyway? If neither consents then surely they just don't have sex. Which means that even if they're both drunk, one must have the intention to have sex with the other, and they're not checking for active consent - perhaps because they're too drunk to think of this, but it's still rape.

If you murdered someone when you were extremely drunk it would still be murder (or manslaughter) even if you were unaware of what was happening.

amillionyears Sat 26-Jan-13 22:13:17

Trekkie, I think the link I posted was from about 10 years ago. Which is the same one you are talking about I think.

BertieBotts Sat 26-Jan-13 22:13:31

If you killed someone... that should read.

amillionyears Sat 26-Jan-13 22:14:12

and the op.

namchan Sat 26-Jan-13 22:21:10

There's always one isn't there? How about you consider the much more common incidence of a woman being drunk to the point of being unconscious and a man, who may or may not be drunk, choosing to penetrate her anyway. Fucking hell.

specialsubject Sat 26-Jan-13 22:22:04

Pepper spray is illegal in the UK.

this is an American list, the rapist probably has a gun anyway.

crash your car deliberately? I don't think so.

usual FB chain rubbish.

shrinkingnora Sat 26-Jan-13 22:22:33

Okay, I've posted the links and saved them so I can post them whenever this comes round again. The person who originally posted it has liked all the links and thanked me for drawing her attention to them, so hopefully I've done some good.

I'm now off to sort out the twats who keep reposting the 'Snow. The only thing that settles in this country and doesn't claim benefits' thing. Time for a cull of FB friends I think...

rosabud Sat 26-Jan-13 22:27:17

Yet another post that begins with an interesting premise. I am not sure what I think so I eagerly await and read other people's answering posts so I can weigh up all the considerations. Some very sensible and thought-provoking pros and cons are mentioned. I begin to form an opinion, I think I might even add to the thread. Then someone comes on and posts something clearly antagonistic and rather supercilious and, well so DIM really. Is this rape? Is that rape? Do you know horrible things happen to men too? Do you know not all men are very horrid by the way??

OH FOR GOD'S SAKE. And the frustration and the irritation really wind me up and I think, you know, I will just go and find some other website where these idiots don't appear every 5 minutes to derail/wind up/play dim/.....quite honestly I don't know what their agenda is.....but it really annoys me.

Rant over and out.

shrinkingnora Sat 26-Jan-13 22:34:51

Please can you ignore them and post anyway? I would love to hear what you have to say!

MidnightMasquerader Sat 26-Jan-13 22:37:25

I think telling men "don't rape" won't work.

The men who don't rape already know rape is wrong, they don't need to be told.

The men who are capable of rape are going to be so evil/messed up they aren't exactly going to listen or care if they are told not to rape.

Well, needless to say, I think you're wrong. grin

A others have said, men who are capable of rape are not necessarily 'evil' and 'messed up' at all. Why would you think this?

Besides, why do you think telling men not to rape won't work? Maybe it won't work - though I doubt it - but why not at least try it out?

What's so awful about the idea of starting to repeatedly tell men not to rape, that you think it's not even worth the bother of doing at all?

Thus far in history, men have never been told repeatedly and en mass not to rape. And yet rape is a widespread problem...

Maybe, if men were told not to rape, and the 'men, please do not rape people' message was continually put out there in the way that the 'women, be careful and take care' message has been put out there, they (rapists) just might start to take it in. Even if it takes a generation for it to happen.

What's the worst thing that can happen if we start telling rapists not to rape? At worst, nothing happens and the status quo remains. A best, rapists stop raping.

Worth a shot, really, don't you think? Or is telling rapists not to rape that abhorrent to you?

Charlizee Sat 26-Jan-13 22:43:14

"Drunken consensual sex happens all the time."

Then I'm confused. I think the general feminist theory was a drunk person cannot give consent?

Charlizee Sat 26-Jan-13 22:45:53

Message deleted by Mumsnet for breaking our Talk Guidelines. Replies may also be deleted.

MidnightMasquerader Sat 26-Jan-13 22:48:54

Ah, now your intentions are starting to become clear.

You're not interested in solving the problem at all, are you?

Trekkie Sat 26-Jan-13 23:00:30

<snort> @ feminists wanting to do away with consensual sex.

BertieBotts Sat 26-Jan-13 23:09:17

A campaign saying simply "Don't rape" is ludicrous.

Ad campaigns which challenge rape myths ARE helpful because they seep into the general consciousness. They might not stop some rapists. They might make some potential rapists think. They might make a victim more likely to be believed. They might help her realise she was not in the wrong. These are all good things.

Oh ffs. Of course women shouldn't need to know these things because men shouldn't rape women, but the fact is that they do, so unfortunately keeping safe is an essential part of life. My own mother was dragged into a lane while walking home alone at night and viciously raped and beaten by a random stranger. She was also repeatedly raped, beaten and violently abused by my father, her husband for two years so don't think for a minute that I don't understand that both can happen. But advising women on how to stay safe (and btw, when in the police, we were not allowed to wear a pony tail as it can easily be grabbed and used to pull you down -it's just common sense), is no more victim blaming than advising pensioners to ask for ID before opening their door or letting tradesmen etc into their house to safeguard against bogus callers and sneak in thiefs!

Surely any precautions we take to safeguard ourselves can only be a good thing - its not telling us to slink about afraid of our own shadows.

And if stranger rape is rare (again, being ex police, I can say with certainty that it isn't as rare as we would all hope), then surely being raped on a traffic island in rush hour must be almost unheard of.

StewieGriffinsMom Sat 26-Jan-13 23:19:23

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Charlizee Sat 26-Jan-13 23:21:52

I see noone has answered my question about what the case is if 2 equally drunk people have sex with each other.

shrinkingnora Sat 26-Jan-13 23:25:41

I'm not ashamed to admit that I don't understand the question. But in my experience, it's usually a bit crap wink

'So if two people (a man and a woman) are both equally drunk and have sex together no rape has been committed?' - honestly do you not see that this depends on consent?

BertieBotts Sat 26-Jan-13 23:27:49

I've answered it about 3 times!

Apart from the fact that it has obviously been written by an American, and so the firearms advice is pretty irrelevant, the only actual 'bad' advice is the point about crashing your car.

Most of the rest of the points would mainly apply in the case of an opportunist attack.

I'm not looking for an argument but it is frustrating to see women advised that they shouldn't need to be aware of their surroundings or protect themselves, as this will somehow be seen as blaming them is they should be attacked. Like I said, would you deflect the same about advising oaps not to open their door to strangers or leave their purses on the hall table at the front door, or allow cold calling tradesmen into their house? Is that 'victim blaming' also?

Charlizee Sat 26-Jan-13 23:30:29

Message deleted by Mumsnet for breaking our Talk Guidelines. Replies may also be deleted.

* deflect = feel, no idea why it came out as deflect.

Charlizee, if someone is so drunk that they have no idea what their name is or where they are, and the other person has a higher level of awareness due to being less intoxicated (although can still be drunk), and takes advantage of the fact that the first person is extremely intoxicated to have sex with them then that is rape.

If two drunk people agree to have sex, then that is sex. The difference being that in the second scenario, an agreement to have sex has been made.

shrinkingnora Sat 26-Jan-13 23:41:44

Do they not say that 'people can be too drunk to give consent'? Genuine question.

BertieBotts Sat 26-Jan-13 23:49:17

It's not really hard. If someone is reacting positively, drunk or not, they're consenting. If they're acting neutrally either because they're too drunk to push you off or because they don't feel confident enough to say anything or they're too drunk to realise what's happening then they're not consenting.

You can't have two people BOTH acting neutrally or protesting against sex, because they'd just be lying there NOT HAVING SEX. Therefore if they're both initiating/reacting positively then it's consensual sex, it doesn't matter how drunk either of them are.

Trekkie Sun 27-Jan-13 00:48:40

People who say the list has good advice...

- Point one says don't have long hair if you are a woman. As long hair renders you vulnerable to rape. But, it says, short hair does not make you invulnerable to rape either.

On what planet is this useful advice?

Do people really think that if all women on the planet cut their hair short, rape would be more or less irradicated?

- Point two says that rapists look for clothing that they can remove quickly. Hmm OK. But also that "many of them carry scissors" - really? Sounds a bit made up to me, TBH. But still. If the scissors then what does it matter about easy removal? Does this mean clothing like a skintight pvc catsuit is safe as it is tricky to get off - while an ankle length skirt is the ultimate in female danger-wear?

And so on.

Thing is. Safety tips are general. Don't get paralytically drunk, wander around dangerous parts of town, not have any way of getting home etc are good advice for EVERYONE. Missives warning women that if they have hair longer than shoulder length they will be seen as PREY are utterly unhelpful in so many ways.

DontEvenThinkAboutIt Sun 27-Jan-13 01:04:49

As mentioned by other posters this 'article' has been doing the rounds for at least 10 YEARS. I can't stand this type of thing being circulated.

There are lots of credible places to go for information about how to protect yourself from rape. Facebook is not one of them.

FelicityWasCold Sun 27-Jan-13 01:09:46

I'm confused re. The ponytail thing.... Female police officers don't have to have short hair, so how would wearing it loose or in a bun stop someone grabbing it? Weird.

achillea Sun 27-Jan-13 01:18:29

I'll remember to look out for serial killers next time I park by a white van.

Jeez. It's so American. An english translation would be quite nice, slightly less dramatic perhaps.

achillea Sun 27-Jan-13 01:20:26

I must say I feel a little bit empowered by the fact that next time I'm put in the boot of a car I can put the lights out and wave my hand through for help.

We have to have hair that is longer than chin length tied back, in a bun preferably, as a pony tail is undoubtedly easier to grab. It's not to say that mid length hair or buns can't be grabbed per se, but a pony tail can be used to control your movement, and is far easier to keep hold of.

Admittedly, on rereading, the point about clothing is probably not very helpful - yes, perps who aren't opportunist attackers have been known to carry scissors, but this is fortunately rarer, and knowing this doesn't allow anyone to prepare for it.

The points on self defense maneuvers are valid, as are making it clear that you have seen and could recognize the person if you saw them again. Often an opportunist attacker will flee at the first sign that their attack has been thwarted.

And again, while I am more than aware that you are more likely statistically to be sexually assaulted by someone known to you, I am of the belief that this should not stop anyone from being prepared to decent themselves or take precautions against such attacks.

Trekkie Sun 27-Jan-13 01:26:14

Point one doesn't talk about ponytails.
It talks about ponytails AND long hair
ie long hair
Saying, rapists like it, if you have long hair you are appealing to rapists. And having read that and now you know... and you choose not to cut your hair... well then what does that say about you...

It is an unpleasant scaremongering missive.

achillea Sun 27-Jan-13 01:31:38

I was attacked once and had no idea what to do but I was empowered by a surge of strength through the adrenalin and pushed him off, screamed and he ran off like a frightened mouse. He was opportunistic, followed me without me seeing him, and only grabbed me when he had the opportunity. But it was my lack of fear that saved me, not my manouevres.

Many women simply freeze regardless of their understanding of how to fight or get away. Perhaps knowledge and empowerment will help but I think our own fear is our biggest weakness.

Trekkie, this is where I disagree. I find your reaction to that point looking to take offense to something that isn't there. No where does it state or even imply that if you wear your hair long or in a pony tail knowing that it could be used against you, that that makes you 'asking for it' or 'hell mend you' or whatever other derogatory inference that you are taking from it. It is merely advice. Another thing you can do to help protect yourself if you feel in a vulnerable situation, and it can be as simple as tucking your hair into your jacket. If you don't you don't, but surely you can't find fault for mere advice?

LineRunner Sun 27-Jan-13 01:40:20

Maybe the best tip of all the the general public is:

MEN! Don't rape women. Thank you.

I hate all that FaceBook shit. The 'don't rape women' list isn't a joke - it's fucking serious and puts the onus where it belongs.

Achillea, I'm sorry to hear that happened to you. I do agree with you that a lack of fear, or even showing that you aren't frightened can thwart an attack. My mother admits that she completely froze and was badly damaged as a result. She believes that had she fought back she might have had a chance. But she'll never know as no one was ever caught.

However, knowledge and ability are power, and it can only be a positive to be in possession of both.

LineRunner Sun 27-Jan-13 01:47:17

Yes, but if men were advised not to rape women, that would be best.

Trekkie Sun 27-Jan-13 01:48:28

Lilblonde I think that it is others who are seeing what they want rather than what is written:

"1] Understand that your hairstyle could benefit an attacker:
Ponytails and long hair are the number one styles rapists seek because long hair and ponytails are easy to grab. Women with short hair are not common targets. But there are exceptions."

How on earth is this helpful? Most young women have long hair. Many wear ponytails. To tell women that to have long hair /wear a ponytail makes them vulnerable is preposterous. Rape will not go away if women cut their hair short. I wear a ponytail at work sometimes, my DD has to tie her hair back for school. Most women with long hair tie it back from time to time, in public. Clearly women and girls are not about to cut their hair off or stop tying it back. And some of them will be raped. And this is not their fault for not having short hair - it is the rapist's fault for raping them. And frankly the very idea that women's hairstyles are to blame for rape is so preposterously, ludicrously offensive I don't know where to put it.

LineRunner Sun 27-Jan-13 01:51:55

Why not just tell men not rape women? With or without pony tails?

But no one is saying that having long hair/wearing it in a certain way puts the blame on the female for rape. What they are trying to point out is that there is a precaution you can take if you so wish that may help to make you safer if you are in that position. I don't understand why people are so quick to find offense in that.

Wouldn't it be a wonderful world if we could wag our fingers at all criminals and say 'now that is wrong, don't do that!' and they just stopped?! I would gladly have been out of a job if that was the case. But it's not. And while it still happens then everyone should be able to be advised on how to make themselves safer, no?

Linerunner, I don't see how your facetious remark has any place in this discussion. That, I find offensive.

Trekkie Sun 27-Jan-13 01:57:54

How many teenagers/young women do you know with short hair? Do you honestly think telling women & girls to cut their hair off is thoughtful, practical, sensible advice?

And do you genuinely believe that if all women and girls cut their hair short, the incidence of rape would diminish?

I mean, really? That is silly, you get that, I think.

LineRunner Sun 27-Jan-13 01:59:24

A precaution? Not having a certain hairstyle?

A precaution against rape?

Oh you do come across as someone I might want to think of as fucking right off.

Trekkie Sun 27-Jan-13 01:59:59

it's not facetious. There are ads on the TV at the moment aimed at men and rape. The govt, in these days of austerity, obviously thinks it is a good message. Worth saying. So don't dismiss it as facetious.

LineRunner Sun 27-Jan-13 02:01:31

Trust me, I am not being fecetious; I am being deadly serious.

I have a place in this discussion because I am in it.

Rape will stop because male behaviour will change.

LineRunner Sun 27-Jan-13 02:04:01

Oh, and if you find a woman's heartfelt and serious remarks about men raping women 'facetious', then that's concerning.

Can you point put where I've advised young women, or any women for that matter to cut their hair? 'it could be as simple as tucking your hair into your jacket', was what I actually said as a piece of advice for if someone felt that they were in a vulnerable situation.

Again, can you show me where I said you had no place in this discussion, your facetious remark was what I had the problem with. But if you want to resort to swearing at me then that's your perogative. I'm going to leave this thread now, because as I've seen happen to do many other people who won't toe your feminist line, my words and sentiment are being twisted and when a discussion is reduced to that then its not one worthy of being in.

LineRunner Sun 27-Jan-13 02:16:21

I wasn't being facetious.

I was being serious.

Men should be told to stop raping women; and not women be told to stop looking and acting in a way in a way might not being preventing rape enough.

If that's my feminist line, as the mother of a son and a daughter, then I'm very proud of it actually.

LineRunner Sun 27-Jan-13 02:28:44

Anyway off to bed and I hope we can all agree that perpetrators are the bad guys.

Charlizee Sun 27-Jan-13 03:55:56

"Therefore if they're both initiating/reacting positively then it's consensual sex, it doesn't matter how drunk either of them are. "

This completely contradicts what feminists generally tend to say about this.

PoppettyPing Sun 27-Jan-13 04:48:59

No it doesn't! FFS! You are not getting it are you? Bertiebots has explained it like, 5 times. And your comment about a campaign about women not making false accusations is ridiculous. The amount of women who make false rape accusations is very very small. Women deal with a load of horrible mistrust from police and society when they ARE sexually assaulted and make a report! So a greater number of men who are rightfully reported often escape conviction! Grr these kind of comments make my blood boil

amillionyears Sun 27-Jan-13 08:01:58

It is the first thread where I have easily seen obvious attempts at derailment.

But at least the subject was still able to be discussed.

I think
a.the trouble with precautions is, a bit like Health and Safety, you cannot measure how much of it was effective.
b.In an ideal world there would be lots of UK research about whether there is a pattern as to how a rapist chooses their victim. Talking about stranger rape, not other types.

StewieGriffinsMom Sun 27-Jan-13 08:38:22

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

rosabud Sun 27-Jan-13 08:44:05

Having got over my rant and decided that, yes, I can just competely and utterly ignore inane comments from those who don't understand what rape is (it's putting your willy in someone without them agreeing to it first, hardly rocket science) and go back to the debate and join in sensibly, I return to find that people have reduced to nit-picking over one particular issue and misunderstanding each other.

It would be interesting to know how many rapes/attacks Lilblondepessimist investigated where she honestly felt that if only the victim had not a certain hairstyle, the attack could have been thwarted. Probably very few. However, I think the main point she is making is not that certain hairstyles may make you vulnerable to attack, but that if you are going to be in a vulnerable position (such as being out late. alone or whatever) then thinking about tucking your hair out of sight might give you a sight advantage should an attack occur. Similarly, I don't think that when linerunner and trekkie say "men should be told not to rape" they are imagining scenarios where we wag our fingers at rapists and tell them they are naughty. They are referring quite seriously to things like awareness campaigns about rape and the notion that there should be a general sea-change in society about attitudes to rape/men's entitlement to sex etc.

Sadly rape is still happening in our society. So is burglary. That's why we have campaigns reminding us to lock doors and windows, leave lights on when out etc etc. However,I think that it is very difficult to advise people how to avoid rape because there are so many different/varied scenarios from domestic abuse to stranger-rape to grooming etc. And each rapist is so different. For every rapist who WILL run off at the first sign of the victim yelling and fighting back, there is a rapist who would actually welcome this response.

At the end of the day, this particular piece of "self-defence" advice is not overly helpful as it's all a bit general and even contradictory, as many have already pointed out. Also, it's annoying/offensive because it does fall into the more old-fashined "women, you should take more care" awareness route rather than the more modern approach which is finally starting to seep through of "rape should be tackled at root-cause and not considered a sad inevitability" awareness route.

To me the article is saying, "women, do you know there are dangerous rapists out there and there's a few minor things you could do if you are walking home late at night that may give you a slim advantage, which we could put under the general lable of 'keeping your wits about you'?" To which the response of most women in today's society would surely be, "err......yes, I did know that already thankyou very much."

amillionyears Sun 27-Jan-13 08:44:23

I would like to read the research.
Where can I find it please?
I cant see anything on the internet, perhaps I have not googled correctly.

DontEvenThinkAboutIt Sun 27-Jan-13 09:51:57

I am re posting my post. (sorry MNHQ)

^As mentioned by other posters this 'article' has been doing the rounds for at least 10 YEARS. I can't stand this type of thing being circulated.

There are lots of credible places to go for information about how to protect yourself from rape. Facebook is not one of them^

This article does not warrant ANY comment.


BertieBotts Sun 27-Jan-13 11:04:45

It's bollocks anyway. If there is a mythical rapist going around with his scissors looking for women in ponytails and unlocked cars, and happens not to see any, do you think he's going to say "Oh well, never mind, better luck tomorrow night" and go home? I don't think so - if he's that intent on raping that he's pre-prepared his equipment, then he's just going to look for the most vulnerable/easy target. So the "advice" doesn't stop the rape from happening. It just means that it happens to somebody else. That's not okay! That doesn't prevent anything!

That's why we need to target the behaviour/thought process of the rapist and get these rape myths consigned to being as ridiculous as the old law that a man is allowed to beat his wife with a stick no thicker than his thumb. Get conviction rates up and that will deter the people who know what they're doing and don't care, challenge myths and beliefs and some potential rapists might even change their thinking and realise that what they thought was okay perhaps isn't.

LineRunner Sun 27-Jan-13 17:16:27

rosabud Yes, spot on.

MidnightMasquerader Sun 27-Jan-13 18:25:21

...if he's that intent on raping that he's pre-prepared his equipment, then he's just going to look for the most vulnerable/easy target. So the "advice" doesn't stop the rape from happening. It just means that it happens to somebody else. That's not okay! That doesn't prevent anything!

I so often think that the reason a lot of people just do not get feminism is because they struggle with holistic, bigger-picture thinking, and this is another example of that.

So much of feminist thought is about how women as a group experience thing, and the impact of X/Y/Z on women at a population level. And people who can't really see beyond their own noses just can't relate to this.

The quote above is a perfect example of this. Feminists are - naturally - concerned about rape as a problem in terms of how it affects and impacts on women as a whole. It's something which feminists recognise as needing to be tackled at a fundamental, grassroots level - and telling women to stay safe and alter their behaviour does not and will never do that.

People who struggle to think 'bigger-picture' see that altering their behaviour might potentially save them from being raped, and OK, that's not all that matters, to perhaps be fair to them, but certainly the main thing that matters.

To feminists, this isn't enough. Because although one woman might (only might) be saved from a rapist, the next woman won't be, so the issue still 100% exists; it's just been transferred onto someone else.

This is why the 'men: please do not rape' message is so important to try to effect a sea-change in thinking. As I said before, even if it takes a generation for that to happen, surely it is worth a try?

I don't know if I'm really explaining myself well, but to me this is yet another example of how one side of the argument just doesn't seem to be able to widen their vision out to see what the rest of us are actually saying...

LineRunner Sun 27-Jan-13 18:52:30

Midnight I think you explained that very well.

shrinkingnora Sun 27-Jan-13 18:55:45

Excellent, Midnight. I am learning a lot from this thread.

Charlizee Sun 27-Jan-13 20:34:21

Message deleted by Mumsnet for breaking our Talk Guidelines. Replies may also be deleted.

amillionyears Sun 27-Jan-13 20:42:32

Charlizee, you have just said something pretty vile on the other thread.
Are you doing the same on here?

StewieGriffinsMom Sun 27-Jan-13 20:46:41

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Trekkie Sun 27-Jan-13 20:50:05

Erm when police turn away rape victims and don't investigate their complaints and close their files and all the rest of it I'll blame the police thanks.

What a bizarre post.

Trekkie Sun 27-Jan-13 20:52:41

I think that reporting posts like the one above is a very good idea, SGM.

amillionyears Sun 27-Jan-13 20:55:58

I reported her/him on the other thread, so MNHQ is going to be busy!

AbigailAdams Sun 27-Jan-13 20:55:59

I think I'll blame all the men who lie about rape Charlizee. You know, the ones who rape women and then lie about it.

Charlizee Sun 27-Jan-13 20:58:10

That's right, while rape accusations are uncommon just brush the ones that do happen under the carpet.

With that attitude police will always have a slight suspicion over whether a rape accusation is genuine or not.

Talk about digging a hole for yourselves?

AbigailAdams Sun 27-Jan-13 21:01:43

Now you just aren't making much sense.

LineRunner Sun 27-Jan-13 21:02:28

Charlizee you are obviously not a regular user of MN otherwise you would know that MN ran a very successful (and ongoing) We Believe You Campaign, challenging the myths about rape.

One of the main rape myths is that there are lots of false allegations. There aren't.


LineRunner Sun 27-Jan-13 21:04:47

And what's with the 'yourselves'?

Axe to grind, much?

Charlizee Sun 27-Jan-13 21:27:36

Message deleted by Mumsnet for breaking our Talk Guidelines. Replies may also be deleted.

Trekkie Sun 27-Jan-13 21:33:18

So on the basis of that (upper) end of the range of false accusations (2% being the lower end of the range that I have heard), you feel it is utterly reasonable for the police to turn away women who approach them about having been raped, and not investigate those complaints.

That's a very interesting approach, sadly it does seem to be followed by many police forces around the world, even after they are told time and time again not to do that.

Ah well.

Have you considered a career in the Met's Sapphire Rape unit? I think you would fit in very well smile

MmeLindor Sun 27-Jan-13 21:39:01

I think that we should report/ignore posters who are obviously not interested in this discussion, and who perpetuate rape myths, and continue the discussion.

I am interested in this idea of long hair/pony tail. Does this mean we shouldn't wear scarves, in case a rapist grabs it? What about handbag straps? And hoods on jackets?

We should just ban accessories for women. Safest all round, really.

LineRunner Sun 27-Jan-13 21:49:44

Wise words, MmeLindor.

Maybe women should stay indoors. Probably best.

AbigailAdams Sun 27-Jan-13 21:55:25

Well women have a greater chance of being raped in their home LineRunner. So that wouldn't work. Maybe we should just not exist? Although, thinking about it, not living with men would greatly reduce that risk. Maybe that would be better advice?

Or maybe men should stop feeling entitled to rape us.

LineRunner Sun 27-Jan-13 22:02:22

I think that men not raping women is probably the way to go.

AbigailAdams Sun 27-Jan-13 22:09:36

Definitely! It wouldn't be practical not to live with men, anyway. After all, who would do their housework?

<sorry, I am in a sarcastic mood tonight. Can't imagine why>

AbigailAdams Sun 27-Jan-13 22:13:44

<although obviously I agree men should stop raping us>

LineRunner Sun 27-Jan-13 22:15:30

Sarcasm is underrated.

NormaStanleyFletcher Sun 27-Jan-13 22:18:00

I am interested by Charlizee's posting history.

It is only in FWR, and the posts seem to have a goading slant to them (notice to mods the posts have that slant, not the poster) in all the threads I have seen.

A posting history that goes against the i believe you campaign.

The posting reminds me of Ed or Bob or one of them

I am now going to report my own post to MNHQ

LineRunner Sun 27-Jan-13 22:22:58

Anyone who seriously quotes Wikipedia on the FBI's 'unfounded' allegations guesswork in the USA is, whilst welcome in my book to carry on making a bit of a berk of themselves, possibly in need of some advice from MNHQ about the We Believe You Campaign.

DoctorAnge Sun 27-Jan-13 22:31:46

I have been watching a series called "I survived". A lot of the violent assault survivors describe how fighting back / pinching / screaming enraged the attacker. The thing that saved them
was usually keeping still, quiet and calm and compliant. Also playing dead. sad
That article is really quite awful. We may as well not leave the house.

AbigailAdams Sun 27-Jan-13 22:34:09

I find it amazing that people think it is OK to restrict women's freedom, but not the perpetrator's.

StewieGriffinsMom Sun 27-Jan-13 22:54:50

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

LineRunner Sun 27-Jan-13 23:10:29

Exactly, StewieGM. 'Unfounded' in FBI-speak does not mean false.

Writehand Mon 28-Jan-13 20:53:15

I remember reading something similar to the OP in the Reader's Digest umpteen years ago. Some of the tips were quite useful. I don't think it's fair to attack the tips because they're no use against acquaintance rapes. The advice is only relevant to attacks by strangers.

Stranger rapists often choose their site rather than their victim - i.e. they lie in wait in what, for them, is a good place. Avoiding potential sites - empty multistorey car parks, for example. Think like a predator - where would you go? Also walking briskly, with purpose, and looking around you is good, because potential attackers prefer someone scuttling along with their head down who's unlikely to be able to identify them.

Also I knew the family of a 13 y.o. who was the victim of a heavily publicised and convicted serial rapist and was astounded by her sangfroid as described by her mum. Despite being entirely sexually inexperienced the amazing girl lay there removing herself mentally from what was happening by carefully memorizing everything she could, from his smell to every detail of his clothing, his voice... The police were bowled over by her as a witness, and she did a lot -- by dealing with it like that -- to help herself as well as the detectives. What a heroine!

shrinkingnora Tue 29-Jan-13 10:21:40

She sounds absolutely incredible. Poor child, what an awful thing to have happened to her.

I find it amazing that people think it is OK to restrict women's freedom, but not the perpetrator's.

Exactly. I had a couple of friends post this shite (the OP) on Facebook and spent a good few days arguing with them about it, and it is astonishing to me how many people just refuse to get it sad

The only thing I could say that seemed to get my point across (or embarass them into shutting up) was this: Saying 'this will save you from being raped' is a red herring because, in a nutshell, nothing will save you. I know from personal experience that nothing will save you; not even being in a room full of your friends will save you. The only thing that stands a chance of saving you from being raped is tellingmen not to rape, by which I mean debunking rape myths and making tem think about their actions and how what society is telling them is ok might actually not be.

Incidentally, this is an excellent study which shows how just exactly that can have a resounding positive impact in just a short period a time.

Writehand Wed 30-Jan-13 17:23:40

AbigailAdamsSun writes: I find it amazing that people think it is OK to restrict women's freedom, but not the perpetrator's.

I think you may have misunderstood the point of the advice.

Being attacked, raped or mugged: no one's suggesting any of these crimes is the victim's fault. However, when walking at night I try to stay in brightly lit places and where there are other people around. And if you're staggering through town drunk you're far more likely to get mugged than if you've got all your wits about you. Avoiding predators, whether they want to steal your wallet, break your nose or both, is basic sense. Criminals aren't considerate, or law-abiding, Abigail. That's what makes them criminals.

Sunshineandfreedom: love the posters. Very cool.

AbigailAdams Wed 30-Jan-13 18:46:55

No I haven't misunderstood.

I'm sure I read somewhere that the police are really upset by this article as it's total rubbish. This study was NEVER conducted and these tips will not save you.

MidnightMasquerader Wed 30-Jan-13 19:32:40

Writehand - how can you say Abigail has misunderstood?

The only way to debunk rape myths and enforce a sea-change in attitudes towards rape is to start to focus the tips and recommendations and restrictions on the people who do the raping, rather than - as has always been done to zero effect - the people who are raped.

I'm also it amazing that people think it is OK to restrict women's freedom, but not the perpetrator's.

I'm not missing the point either.

AbigailAdams Wed 30-Jan-13 19:54:12

Sorry Writehand I was a bit brusque there! In a rush. Tbh though I think others on this thread have said it better than me.

Writehand Wed 30-Jan-13 20:07:26

OK, MidnightMasquerador. We're going to try to reduce burglary. Shall we spend all our money on putting up posters and ads reminding burglars that it's wrong to do it? Would this be the best way of reducing burglary?

Or do you think, as I do, that reminding people about home security, property marking and about being careful who they tell their holiday dates to might work better? That seems to be what the Crime Prevention people think.

That's my point. If criminals obeyed public information adverts they wouldn't be criminals. We take steps to avoid crime when it's theft. Why is rape different? In an ideal world we could all walk around wearing nothing but diamonds. But we don't live in an ideal world.

The posters cover acquaintance rape, and they're very cool, because a lot of men don't register that acquaintance rape is rape. But even men are generally aware that stranger rape, which is what the tips are about, is a crime just as beating someone up is a crime.

NeverKnowinglyUnderstood Wed 30-Jan-13 20:36:05

If you are going to mention burglary, that is interesting.

How many times has a policeman turned up at a scene of a burglary and assumed it had not occured or been faked or assumed the victim had somehow asked for it??

You are still a victim of burglary if you left your back door open,
if you fell asleep drunk on the sofa and someone walked in and nicked your precious possessions, and yet the same is NOT seen to be true if you are sexually attacked and you had your tits out, or skirt too short. Or were out of your head on drugs or alcohol.

you wouldn't need to be so verbal about telling rapists not to rape if the public perception about rape was the same as burglary aka attacking the "english mans castle"

FWIW I was raped when I was 11, I had a princess Di haircut, the man had been nice to me, and even though I know I shouldn't have taken the can of coke he offered, I did. It has taken me 25 years to realise that taking a can of coke is not the same as asking to be orally vaginally then analy raped. AND that even if I had asked him to do it I was 11 and it would still have been rape.

LineRunner Wed 30-Jan-13 20:51:08

I support the 'Men: Don't Rape Women and Girls' message for a number of reasons.

A huge amount of rapes are 'acquaintance rapes'; other rapes are often committed by rapists 'escalating' from these; and - as NeverKnowingly movingly reveals above - victims have a right to know that society clearly and unhesitatingly believes that all rape is always wrong.

Writehand Wed 30-Jan-13 21:08:07

Very good points, NeverKnowinglyUnderstood (love the name, btw) I would make the same -- indeed, I remember in a very old book about rape, Against Our Will, by Susan Brownmiller (1975) reading that false reports of rape were as rare as false reports of burglary or arson. People do make false reports of major crimes, but it's rare. I don't know what the stats are now. Of course it's tricky - to a Saudi Arabian police officer all accusations rapes are false.

However in our society, if a very drunk bloke takes a woman back to his place and passes out, he's not going to find the police madly sympathetic if he wakes up to find she's gone off with all his money. "Are you sure you didn't give her the money, sir?" I can imagine them asking. There's principles, and then there's life as she is experienced... smile

I think the education comes in not with stranger rape, most people know that's wrong (apart from the occasional American politician) but with assaults by acquaintances. Too many men have completely the wrong idea about what's ok. And as for SS when it comes to underage girls... Don't get me started! Your experience was ghastly. I had one similar but far less severe abd traumatic, and I assumed I had to put up with it too,

AbigailAdams Wed 30-Jan-13 21:32:47

NeverKnowinglyUnderstood, that was terrible. I am so sorry that happened to you. And I am so sorry you ever felt it was your fault. You just shouldn't have had to go through that as well.

Can I ask, as the mother of a DD and a DS, has anyone got any good tips for approaching this subject and at what ages roughly? I am desperate for my DCs to understand this issue.

(That is that men shouldn't rape and women shouldn't have to adjust their behaviour to avoid rape)

NeverKnowinglyUnderstood Wed 30-Jan-13 21:41:34

with DS totally as a result of my baggage.. when we have talked about sex we have talked about it feeling nice,, but only if both of you want it, if either of you are not happy with it - it wont feel nice and you shouldn't do it.

Thanks knowing. That sounds like a simple effective approach.

Writehand Wed 30-Jan-13 21:43:29

I dunno, mockeveryweek. I've only got DSs. I told them their dad's rule when they were about 11: Never make a girl sorry she knew you. If you spell it out it covers everything, I think.

That means never do anything she doesn't want, and if she does want to do sexual things with you then don't make her pregnant, pass on diseases or talk about her to your mates. Oh, and any violence against women is not only intolerable but disgraceful. To my DH it was the standard for being a "real man": real men don't hit women.

MidnightMasquerader Wed 30-Jan-13 22:55:41

I think the education comes in not with stranger rape, most people know that's wrong (apart from the occasional American politician) but with assaults by acquaintances. Too many men have completely the wrong idea about what's ok.

So you agree then....

That yes, the idea should be to tackle men, and their thinking. Acquaintance rape is far more common and widespread than stranger rape. And many men who rape acquaintances don't think of themselves as rapists - or criminals to use another term (the term people who like to use the burglary analogy tend to use).

Telling burglers not to steal stuff may have limited effect, sure - since they know full well they're criminals. But telling men not to put their unwanted penises in other people's bodies might just work since previously many of these men simply haven't fully taken it in that they're just not entitled to do that.

So targeting them and getting them to re-think their position surely is the answer. 'Restricting' their freedoms and getting them to modify their behaviour surely is the answer.

MidnightMasquerader Wed 30-Jan-13 22:59:38

'Never make a girl sorry she knew you' is brilliant advice, by the way. smile

Glad to see there are people with reason around! I totally agree with Abigail and Midnight.

I take a very firm line on this, which has gotten me into heated debates before. Telling women that they should 'be careful', 'walk in brightly lit areas' etc is sending the message, whether you explicitly say it or not, that if they then get raped it is at least partially their fault for not being more careful. No woman should ever be told to 'be careful' as it sends the message that it's at least partially her responsibility to make sure that she doesn't get raped. Just because you don't use those exact words, it doesn't mean that that's not the message you're sending. Victim blaming isn't always as cut-and-dried as saying categorically "It was her fault".

Also, I find it hard with the rare 'stranger rape' cases not to consider them as a bit of a red herring. When I was seventeen, I went to lie down next to my drunk and upset ex-boyfriend - who had been emotionally abusive in the past, though I didn't recognise it as that then - and he raped me. Should I have been more careful, and not gone to comfort him? I thought I loved him. Is it my fault, because I went and laid down next to him?

It makes me furious that in our society 'telling women to be careful' is still acceptable. I have friends who do this and say "But if something bad happens its still not at all her fault", but in a world where we're constantly told to be careful, if we're not and something bad happens, the message we are getting from society is undeniably "You should have been more careful". It is victim blaming and it is wrong.

NeverKnowinglyUnderstood Thu 31-Jan-13 08:58:01

Indeed Abigail,
the other parallel to draw is with driving. there are roads that are inherently more dangerous to drive than others. However, if I am driving on the M6 at rush hour on a Friday I am in no way to blame for the stupid twat that has driven into me. We can and should be aware of the things we can do to minimise accidents on the roads however there is a concept of being the innocent party in an accident, even if it is dark, or a wiggly road etc..

NeverKnowinglyUnderstood Thu 31-Jan-13 08:58:42

sorry just read that back and it sounds very random!

NormaStanleyFletcher Thu 31-Jan-13 14:22:26

Re the burglary, lock your doors analogy. I have seen people post on here angry with their family members for forgetting to lock doors. "what if we had been burgled, it would have been,all his/her fault". Or angry at themselves for leaving their keys in the lock, "luckily nobody took the car, but I would have felt awful". S o saying that no one blames anyone but the burglar is not right.

How do we judge people who don't wear seatbelts? It's just a precaution. It is just making them safer.

People do feel guilt/blame others for not following the "sensible precautions."

So telling women that these are the sensible precautions to take sets them up for guilt and blame.

That is why it is wrong.

Very astutely and elegantly put, Norma!

NormaStanleyFletcher Thu 31-Jan-13 15:12:33

Why thank you Sunshine blush

I've had trouble articulating that myself in the past, so credit where it's due smile

NeverKnowinglyUnderstood Thu 31-Jan-13 17:38:52

Hadn't thought of that Norma, I guess you are right about the seatbelt thing as well.

FastidiaBlueberry Thu 31-Jan-13 20:40:12

What MidnightMasquerader said. Burglars know they are burgling. Many rapists don't know they are raping and those who do, can pretend to themselves and everyone else, that they aren't raping. Burglars simply can't call it something else ("blessing someone else with that property" "relieving the householder of stuff they don't need anyway" "facilitating an insurance claim to provide householder with higher quality products" etc.) and not have someone tell them that no, actually, it's burglary and it's a criminal offence. They can't hide behind a more positive term. They also can't pretend that they thought the householder wanted them to take their stuff (-"they didn't have a burglar alarm and the locks were really shit, so they must have wanted me to take it, right?") because nobody would agree that that assumption was reasonable. Rapists can and mostly do and that's why most rapists get away with it.

That's why telling men what rape is and that they shouldn't do it, issimply not comparable to telling burglars what burglary is and they shouldn't do it - everyone knows what burglary is but very few people actually know what rape is. To the degree that even rape victims often don't know they are rape victims. They go into denial about it, convince themselves that because they were drunk or flirting earlier on, or didn't say "no" loudly enough, it can't have been rape.

That's why educating people about rape and telling men not to rape women, is actually a useful thing to do. Much more useful than telling women how to avoid rape. If we could avoid it, then we would and no-one would ever be raped. Given that most women do actually follow most of the rape-avoidance tips and a very large percentage of us are still being raped, that is a huge clue that we need to try something different if we want to stop rape.

MidnightMasquerader Thu 31-Jan-13 23:20:09

Exactly. /\/\

And I continue to be amazed that so many people - women included - continue to be quite so resistant to even trying to switch tactics and tell men not to do it...

I think it's very interesting, actually. That people are not only not blasé or ambivalent WRT telling men not to rape, but resistant. As if the very idea is so preposterous as to not even be countenanced.

It'd be funny if it wasn't so depressing.

BertieBotts Thu 31-Jan-13 23:24:01

<furiously clicks invisible "Like" button on Fastidia's post>

Brilliantly said.

BertieBotts Thu 31-Jan-13 23:26:07

A male friend as well recently posted something on facebook saying that men should be offended by all of the "Prevent rape - don't wear a skirt!" kind of advice, because, as the thing he posted said, that just assumes that as a man you see a woman in a skirt and suddenly can't help yourself but to rape her. Which obviously isn't true, and is pretty insulting to men as a group, really!

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