Friday, 11 November 2011

The Logic of Illogicality

We live in a system full of tensions and downright illogic. We live in a country in which rape is illegal but pornography showing increasingly aggressive and painful acts against women is becoming ever more mainstream, in which no means yes and even where a woman doesn't initially know she wants sex, she learns to like it and orgasm through it when she is fucked. We live in a society in which battery is illegal but where pornography depicting women being slapped, spit on, being forcibly held down to 'deep throat' male porn actors to the point of crying and retching, is commonplace.

So violence in porn is permissable, coercion in porn is permissable - remember it's only fantasy, except that this fantasy is meted out on the bodies of the women used in porn. Being penetrated and cum over isn't fantasy for these women - it's the reality. I know this - I've been there. This stuff is painfully real to me. When the john, the punter, has got his rocks off, turns the dvd off, closes the magazine, performs a mental channel change, can she do the same, can the woman in the pictures do the same? The camera stops rolling and she picks herself up, cleans herself up, the cum on her face and body, inside her, checks for tears to her anus, her vagina, her throat. She's at high risk now for STDs, Hep B, HIV. She limps to the shower, swollen and bruised, and then goes back to her homelife, such as it is, knowing that images of her being hurt, being fucked, being laughed at, are now going to help make the man who sold her a very wealthy man, that those images will be wanked over, laughed about, that she will continue to be consumed by man after man even when the initial assault is over. Drinking helps, drugs help: they make it all a little more distant, make the pain a little less real. They help in trying to pretend that what happens doesn't matter, that she doesn't matter, that nothing really matters just the next drink or drug.

She begins to feel like her body isn't hers. Unable to remove herself physically from the abuse, retreating into her body, into her head, is not enough. The men follow her inside. She splits off from it, watching it yet living it, there but not there. This body isn't mine. Don't show you're hurting don't show you're hurting (or they'll hurt you more - they get off on it) becomes a numb I don't feel it anyway, nothing touches me, nothing moves me. You can beat me and fuck me and laugh at me but I'm not here anymore, you're just touching a body, shouting at a body, laughing at a body. I feel no connection. It oscillates: fear and numbness, extreme pain and total detachment, in body out of body. The name they're aiming this abuse at used to feel like my name, used to be mine, to be me, but it's not now. It refers to the shell, to the body. They don't know I've gone. They can't hurt me, don't know my real name, my real being, my real essence.

Getting back into the body, my body, piecing back the broken fragments, is slow, so slow, and painful beyond measure. The illogicality of a society which approves porn as 'normal' but claims to have justice for rape victims, victims of domestic violence, acts seen mirrored all the time in porn which are treated as not simply permissible but harmless and even fun, makes the process almost impossible. How do I live in this society? How can I possibly belong there, be validated there, be affirmed and supported, listened to and respected, with my past, my present? The images of the abuse continue to be out there, to be wanked over and laughed about. And I am told by people with absolutely no first hand experience of what it means to be sold, to be raped on camera, sometimes by one man and sometimes by many, for entertainment, that maybe it wasn't so bad. Porn isn't so bad.

You misunderstood, Angel. Porn's harmless fun, women choose to empower themselves and celebrate their sexuality and bodies by being in it, they get paid and laid and everyone's a winner.

Wrong wrong wrong. Everyone's a loser in porn. When I was sold, I lost everything: my body was used in ways that hurt me to the point of passing out and throwing up by the men around me, the images of that abuse continue to be used now by men who don't know me, although they think they do. Have you ever read the commentary in porno mags and on dvd labels? 'This little slut had it coming and couldn't wait to get all her hot holes filled'... 'This cunt took on more than she bargained for in her first gang bang, including taking her first DP and she loved it'... The experience was debasing, the images are debasing and the final insult is that it's described as being exactly what she wanted and deserved.

With how mainstreamed porn has become, and how increasingly aggressive, little wonder that public perception is often that rape victims are to blame. We are teaching the next generation that women want to be treated as sex objects, we demand it, that no doesn't really mean no and we had it coming to us. Follow that thought process through to its logical conclusion and it becomes clear that we are living in a rape culture. To deny that would be illogical.

3 comments:

  1. I admire and applaud your courage. While I've not been through the horrors that you've endured, I, too, am a survivor. Know that you have friends and support in large numbers.

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  2. Thank you for your ability to tell it like it is.. I was in so much denial when I was in the industry. I had to be..to survive. Now I see young women applauding porn as though it makes them "cool" and "one of the guys"...we are never gonna be "one of the guys" while they are spitting on us..

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