(Warning: the contents of this post are disturbing and are only meant for mature audiences.)
Merriam-Webster Dictionary defines rape as unlawful sexual activity and usually sexual intercourse carried out forcibly or under threat of injury against the will, usually of a female, or with a person who is beneath a certain age or incapable of valid consent. When most people think of rape, they imagine a woman being physically assaulted by a stranger. I know I did for the longest time, until through personal experience, I discovered that rape comes in many different packages. As mentioned in one of our previous posts about sexual abuse, RAINN states that approximately four out of five rapes are committed by someone known to the victim. For this very reason, sexual assault is one of the most underreported crimes, with 68% still being left unreported!
Over the last few years, I’ve shared my story with close friends, and friends of friends, that are going through the agony of trying to leave an abusive spouse or partner. It has come to my attention that in most abusive relationships, sexual abuse is also highly prevalent. The need to control every single aspect in the relationship is a major factor in what drives people to abuse others. So it only makes sense that a physically and verbally abusive spouse would also be prone to rape their partner. Through the power of manipulation and threats the abuser can gain the ability to control their victim.
For instance, being made to feel guilty for not performing sexual acts for a partner is a form of manipulation. Statements such as, “It’s your duty as a wife to have sex with me whenever I want” is the abuser’s way to guilt their partner into doing what they want regardless of the other person’s feelings. I had a partner at one time threaten to find sex elsewhere if I didn’t allow him to do what he wanted, whenever he wanted. It was a devastating statement to hear. He basically claimed that because I didn’t perform often enough in the bedroom, if he cheated on me, it would be my fault. And I believed him! I fully believed that when he cheated on me there was nothing I could do about it because I couldn’t keep up with his sexual desires. This is not normal! It’s sexual abuse and should not be justified simply because you are in a relationship.
I can also recall times in the past to which I would wake up from a dead sleep by my partner coming on to me. When I rolled away out of confusion and asked what was going on, he blamed me. He would say that I was the one that woke him up and started coming on to him first. I would be left trying to figure out how that was possible when I was dead asleep. I realize now that those were just lies to cover up the fact that he was forcing himself on me while I was sleeping. Again, it was just another form of rape or sexual abuse. If you are being forced, made to feel guilty, or threatened into performing sexual acts for a spouse or partner, it is still considered rape and it is not okay.
. . . sexual assault is one of the most underreported crimes, with 68% still being left unreported!
Unfortunately, this type of sexual abuse is rarely reported. So I want our readers to know that anytime your partner does not respect your wishes, especially in regards to anything of a sexual nature, this is not acceptable and you need to seek help immediately. You should not feel guilted or shamed into performing sexual acts for someone who loves you. You should not feel obligated or forced to do something that is a way for couples to express their love for one another. Sex in a relationship is a vital part of expressing deep intimacy. It should be an act that is used to display love and affection, not control and manipulation. Remember this the next time someone tries to make you feel obligated to have sex, whether it be on a date or with your significant other. If you don’t want to, you don’t have to.