Co-survivors and the War on Women

Posted: February 24, 2013 by ladypartsdoc in Uncategorized
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*******Trigger Warning*******

While the Rape Election waged on, people living with women who were experiencing stress and trigger states were also impacted. Women who experience criminal violence of a sexual nature are all kinds of women. We have husbands, wives, daughters, sons, fathers, mothers, brothers, sisters, grandfathers, grandmothers, and friends who love us. All of these people in our lives are considered co-survivors. When these attacks on rape and incest survivors came out with such graceful precision, survivors were not the only ones listening. We were not the only ones hurt by it.

When someone goes into PTSD trigger states, it is almost like the person disappears and emotions become the person. This manifests in many ways depending on the level of the trigger state and the level of the trauma as well as the extreme nature of the trigger itself. Being shamed by the people of my nation for not wanting to have my rapist’s baby was severe trigger. I felt like the people responsible for these things were saying in code, “Boys, rape away. We got your back.” This is rape culture – or one aspect of it.

My husband had to live with me and watch me cry, go silent, cry some more, start to freak out about how we need constant 24/7 video running to some security company and a panic button. He also had to relive watching me deal with sexual assault that occurred while we were a couple. It wasn’t easy to rebuild a sex life after that, and I know he loves me because he stayed through it. We are not unique. This is how many co-survivors have had to live during this campaign insanity entitled the War on Women caused by greedy men and women in power who believe in nothing.

Making this documentary is a cathartic way for me to build the armor that I need to deal with this in the next election if there are people dumb enough to run campaigns on rape in 2016. It is also a way for us to get to know each other – all survivors. Feeling alone is one of our biggest battles. All of the women and men participating in this project are forming a community. Communities have power in many ways – voice, unity, self-reliance, and hope. That’s how I see it, anyway.

It is because the War on Women hurt men as well that we are interviewing men. Not only are men co-survivors, they are also survivors. In this election, male survivors were invisible. Yet, male survivors need as much support and community as females. Including them in this community is important because it is right, but also because it is with division that we are conquered.

~Jennifer

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Comments
  1. Excellent quote ! So appropriate and so true.

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