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Rape and Sexual Assault

Brutal Gang Rapist Sentenced to Prison; Media, Public Say, “But He Apologized!” and “After All This Was So 1984!”

Liz Seccuro 

William Beebe, 42,  raped Liz Seccuro, above, now 40, 20 years ago when he was a frat boy and she was a sorority pledge attending a party at Beebe’s fraternity house at the University of Virginia.  Seccuro was first drugged by way of something the frat house bartender slipped into her drink.  She was then led by Beebe into a room upstairs where he pulled her onto his lap and began reading poetry to her.  Repulsed, she pushed him away and fled, screaming, “HELP!” but a frat brother of Beebe’s grabbed her and threw her back in Beebe’s direction instead, then left.   Beebe, whom she remembers as reeking of alcohol and body order, then threw her on the bed, ripped off her clothes, pried her legs open and raped her.  She had never had sex before, the pain was agonizing, and she bled profusely, then passed out.  She believes that while she was passed out, she was gang raped, and that possibly frat rushees watched the rapes as though it were a spectator sport.  She awoke wrapped in a bloody sheet, then walked to the emergency room. 

She immediately reported the rape to campus police and the Dean at the University of Virginia, who, she says, blew her off, did not believe her, dismissed her.  She was devastated by the attacks.  Her grades dropped, she withdrew from friends and family, she entered into a tumultuous relationship, then married the man and was quickly divorced.  She began to suffer panic attacks.

Beebe

Beebe “apologized” 20 years later in response to the “9th step” of the Alcoholics Anonymous recovery program, which requires that participants make amends to everyone they have harmed,  unless to do so will cause additional harm.  He mailed Seccuro a letter of apology 20 years after the rapes.  The letter shocked and devastated her.  She e-mailed Beebe, wanting to ask him more questions about his apology, the reasons for it, and what had happened that night.  He insisted that although he’d been drunk, he remembered the events of that night, but his version was markedly different from what she remembered:

“I ‘convinced’ you after what seemed like hesitation, that staying w/me in my room upstairs was better than walking all the way back to the suites… Of course, seeing opportunity to have a good time w/you overrode any gentlemanly efforts to return you safely back to the dorms.

“We started to make out in my room a while…There was no fight and it was all over in short order. When we awoke in the morning it was still chilly out, so I lent you my jean jacket, and you walked home.

“There were no other men present. I was the only one.”

Disturbed by Beebe’s characterizing having raped her as “having fun” with her, Seccuro pressed him, and he finally acknowledged, in writing, that he had raped her. 

It became increasingly evident to Seccuro as she e-mailed with Beebe, and events unfolded, that this was not primarily about Beebe making amends to her; this seemed to be more about Beebe, taking care of Beebe.  The “amends” didn’t really seem to be about Beebe, asking Seccuro for forgiveness; more,  they seemed to be about Beebe wanting to feel good about Beebe, more about him protecting his good-guy reputation with his AA group, where he was admired and respected.

With Beebe’s written confession in her hands, Seccuro called the police, and Beebe was arrested.   Facing a sentence of life in prison, the supposedly remorseful and apologetic rapist so interested in making amends now denied ever raping Seccuro.   He received support from the Christian community as well.  Once the charges had been filed, Seccuro  began receiving letters from godly indignants, demanding that she “forgive” Beebe and condemning her for pressing charges.

Beebe was ultimately indicted for rape and “sexual object penetration.”  He entered into plea bargaining and the charge was reduced to aggravated sexual battery in exchange for Beebe agreeing to tell the truth about the other men who had raped Seccuro.

So much for his “amends.”  So much for his “honesty” and his “sorrow” over what he did to her.  So much for his “apology.”  Note  Beebe’s ongoing inability to consider anybody’s life or humanity but his own:

“I’m not trying to excuse my behavior,” he said at one point, “but I was a different person then.  I have a purpose, and that gives life meaning. I didn’t have that then.”

Because of course, what really matters is how much purpose and meaning Beebe’s life might have had, not how a woman’s life has been irretrievably altered by his raping her.  Because of course when men’s lives don’t have a purpose and a meaning,  it’s easy to understand why they might drug a woman, gang rape her, brutalize her.

Beebe was sentenced to 10 years in prison, with all but 18 months suspended on condition he perform 500 hours of community service related to issues of sexual assault and alcohol abuse on college campuses.

What’s sobering to me are the polls where the news is being reported, asking readers to vote as to whether the sentence was too harsh, and the substantial public sentiment that she probably lied, she deserved it, she asked for it, she deserves to be raped again.  What’s also sobering are the headlines, which far and away emphasize, not the fact of a brutal gang rape, but the rapist’s “apology” and that it’s been “20 years” and that it happened in “1984.”   Who cares about some self-serving “apology”?  Who cares that it’s been 20 years, that it happened in 1984?  That’s 20 long years of agony for Liz Seccuro, 20 years of her having to relive and recall her nightmare, 20 years of feeling sucker punched and out of breath every time she saw men who reminded her of her rapist, looked like him, walked like him, talked like him, 20 years of panic attacks, 20 years of pain and suffering. 

There is no sentence which will compensate Liz Seccuro for what she suffered.  There can’t be one.  There never will be.  But at the very least, men like this ought to be charged, tried, and convicted, no matter how much time has elapsed since they raped a woman, and the cases ought to be widely publicized, and why?  Because if they are not, men will continue to rape women and walk, just like Beebe walked for two long decades.    And men, (and sadly, women, especially “Christians”), will continue to figure that if a man says, “I’m sorry” every time he rapes a woman, that should be sufficient.

Seccuro, together with alumnae of her sorority, have begun an organization called “Sisters Together Assisting Rape Survivors”.

Link Link Link

Heart

Discussion

55 thoughts on “Brutal Gang Rapist Sentenced to Prison; Media, Public Say, “But He Apologized!” and “After All This Was So 1984!”

  1. Yeah it was never about her, it was about him feeling better about himself. Phucking creep. Just like Jessica Lunsford’s father, a female must be brutalized before he can “become a man with purpose.”

    Posted by chasingmoksha | March 16, 2007, 4:44 pm
  2. The focus, the point of view of those media stories really anger me. They wrote them to get the response he’s got: all about his suffering, what a tragedy this has been to HIS life, how it’s devastated HIM. Thank you Heart, for the real story.

    Posted by Pony | March 16, 2007, 5:20 pm
  3. hmm… CM I understand your point… I do agree, but I was one of the women who said that maybe he will learn from that lesson. (Lunsford) I do not think it should come to a woman being brutalized. It should not take for a womans inherent agony and suffering to be made public, to stir up the rage and anger in men to say that this is wrong… it never should have happened and never again to any woman ever!!! I was making a point that, sadly, some men never learn until it hits home. My grandfather BRUTALLY beat my grandmother… It wasnt until one of his daughters was damn near beat to death by her boyfriend that he saw just how wrong it is to batter and abuse women. He had, prior to my aunt’s abuse, felt that women provoked men to hit them. BULLSHIT!!! But it took for his own to suffer the same his wife had at his hand, before he came to the understanding that women are not punching bags.

    We arent. We are not punching bags, we are not tools to fill a man’s sexual desire. We are not here to “forgive” every creep, jerk, abusive asshole, who we encounter just because they utter a few words. I am sick of this being said. Tired of the “church” teaching women that we are to be meek… obedient to God and our husbands. Too many books on the power of a praying woman, wife, mother, and not enough focus on the power of a man as a MAN. Not enough exposing the abuse of this “power” that men have and use over women.

    This burns me… What is it about rape that men seem not to understand.. It is intrusive, it hurts physically, lets not even begin to talk about the emotional scars… how about the blaming… the people who dont believe you… feeling like it was your fault for being a normal person in what should have been a normal setting…. but some sick jerk decided to make his move!!! I just cannot believe it.

    I just posted this in the thread about the rape of women in this terrorism the USA is committing in Iraq… Those images……. All of this, though different stories and different women, has a connecting factor. Women, abused, rejected, dejected, left vulnerable and open… and what’s worse… THEY ARE THE BLAME… They wanted it… He apologized… his torment, his agony, good upstanding men, men fighting for our “safety”… same shit different day.

    Posted by Divine Purpose | March 16, 2007, 5:20 pm
  4. I’m particularly fond of one of the headlines “Man Who Sent Apology Sentenced For Rape”…as if it’s all a horrible mistake and some poor apologetic innocent has been sent down for a crime he didn’t commit…It ought to read “Rapist Sentenced” End of story.

    Posted by Pippa | March 16, 2007, 9:19 pm
  5. This is a secondary issue, but the story is a good example of why I do not trust AA. It gives this type of man too many outs.

    Posted by profacero | March 16, 2007, 9:47 pm
  6. You are so right Heart, it’s all about making HIM feel better.

    I particularly *love* the nice little backtrack of “there were no other men”, oops, perhaps there were if I can get a plea bargain out of it.

    Lying, not exactly the path of moral redemption is it???

    [ending comment now, because a lot of swearing is sure to end me up in the moderation/spam queue!]

    Posted by stormy | March 17, 2007, 12:48 am
  7. Not a secondary issue at all. Any excuse will do, but organized excuses! Even better. Yes that headline. All some sad oversight. It isn’t until the last (or next to) sentence in one of those news stories that we get back to the wrong done. this woman. I am in fact shocked that the copy editor didn’t hack it off.

    Posted by Pony | March 17, 2007, 12:52 am
  8. Stormy isn’t there some particularly Aussie swears you could employ that would be spam destructors?

    Posted by Pony | March 17, 2007, 12:54 am
  9. ChasingMoksha totally OT but I just picked up a CD titled: Moksaha Aud Squad Live.

    Sorry—back to enragement.

    Posted by Pony | March 17, 2007, 12:55 am
  10. Here is one of their videos I think: http://www.myspace.com/themoksha

    A rock band, or pehaps heavy metal. Sounds like they are tripping on acid to me. My head now hurts.

    If they are Moksha, then I may start chasing something else. HAH!

    Posted by chasingmoksha | March 17, 2007, 1:13 am
  11. Noop. Five doodes, one violin, 2 steel guitars, one bass, one lead. “Honky Crunch, Paan Masala, Concerto Retardo. etc. ” Brought it home haven’t listened yet. Library day.

    Posted by Pony | March 17, 2007, 2:10 am
  12. Women’s lives are destroyed while men walk free because “time passes”.

    I love the STARS because they are all of us.

    Posted by witchy-woo | March 17, 2007, 4:54 am
  13. I got one of these ‘apologies’ about two weeks from the asshole who abused me for 3 years back in the early ’90s. I can’t bring myself to look at it again to post the whole thing, but his exact words were “I’m sorry if I ever did anything to hurt you.” IF IF IF, fuck you, IF. You know EXACTLY what you did to me, you selfish piece of shit. It’s all about him and whatever bullshit ‘program’ he’s doing, the hell with me and the fact that I don’t want to even see his name let alone some bullshit ‘apology’ that isn’t. So what if it’s 13 years later and I can’t even sit here and type this without having a panic attack, because your damn apology sent me RIGHT BACK there.

    Posted by Melissa | March 17, 2007, 5:15 am
  14. I remember when I first initially read about this story how nauseating it was to me. What a complete and total scumbag. Yeah, I’m betting she was a different person before her first sexual experience was being drugged and aggressively raped. I love how, even in his statements, he’s making excuses for himself, making it clear that he has no concept of what he did really being wrong – “of course, seeing the opportunity to have a good time…”. Oh, of course. Here’s another ‘of course’: calling the police after the man who raped you, clearly unapologetic, confesses to the crime. Of course, he should be convicted. Of course, sane people wouldn’t object to the prosecution of a violent sexual criminal.

    It’s so nice to see that all of these sympathetic christians are spending their precious time trying to get a rapist off from serving time for CONFESSING TO A VIOLENT CRIME, then lying about it. Meanwhile, if it was a woman who had had an abortion, I’m sure many of them wouldn’t care if she was killed during the bombing of a pro-choice health clinic.

    This whole argument vaguely reminds me of the people who objected to the prosecution of older nazi war criminals because, hey, if they managed to get away with it, they should be rewarded for that, right? It also reminds me of the arguments people were using after Roman Polanski won his freaking Oscar. Who cares if he’s a child rapist, it was so long ago, let’s celebrate him for evading the law!

    Posted by gingermiss | March 17, 2007, 5:29 am
  15. Pony, I prefer to rely on the international classics such as:
    He’s a lowlife lying, fucking raping, rape apologist, self-serving shit-faced scumbag, who deserves nothing less than the same back to him and see if he likes if/when his gang of (anal) rapists say “sorry, a bit of fun, it’s in the past, bygones be bygones, it’s 20 years ago and you should just get over it, after all it was only sex…”

    Of course, I’m a bit calmer now, so the above is a bit warm and fuzzy compared to what I was thinking earlier.

    I think it is time that we equated the rape of a virgin, of any age, with that of paedophiles. Whilst the rape of a woman who is not a virgin routinely has devastating effects, the fuck-you-up-for-life factor when raping a virgin would be life-long or near life-long scarring, pretty much on a par with the rape of a child. A “sorry” just ain’t gunna cut it. All rapists should be thrown in the slammer for 20 to life, this may partially help the victim, for that is her sentence that she will have to live, with her only ‘crime’ that she was female.

    In the above story, the Dean of the uni dismissed her complaint. Quite frankly, this asshole too needs to go down — as an accessory after the fact.

    Stormy is in fact now campaigning for the new office of “Universal Enforcer of Justice” to end rape and domestic violence. Some of the strategies to combat this may or may not include blunt, rusty knives (chemical/medical castration is just a bit too airy-fairy) for rapists, and burning out the eyes of ‘porn addicts’ (hey, I’m just ‘helping’ their ‘addiction’ right?). To ‘cure’ the DV abusers, I’ll put them in a boxing ring with an opponent that is at least 20-50% heavier, with far more fight experience, and call it a fair fight (they are both adults aren’t they, so really, the physical differences really have absolutely ‘no bearing’…) If these strategies don’t work, then I’ll have to employ some extreme measures.😉

    Posted by stormy | March 17, 2007, 7:20 am
  16. OK, I was able to calm down a bit and go and look at the entire message (he sent this to a classmates.com acct I opened about 5 years ago and promply forgot about; I didn’t even know you could get messages or send them if you didn’t pay, but whatever; I got a notice in my email that I had a message). Surprise, surprise he sent another one.

    The original ‘apology’:

    From:
    Michael XXXXX
    To:
    Melissa XXXXX
    Sent:
    March 02, 2007 08:47:42 PM
    Subject:
    Hi, from Michael !

    Hey Melissa Just wanted to say hi and I hope all is well with you. I am older and wise now. I wish you happiness and good times. I am sorry if I hurt you in any way. I am kinda doin the “My Name is Earl” thing.

    The latest:

    From:
    Michael XXXXX
    To:
    Melissa XXXXX
    Sent:
    March 16, 2007 08:06:34 AM
    Subject:
    Hi, from Michael !

    No response I can’t believe your [sic] not even curious.
    —————————————————————-
    He’s a doctor, so no need for basic grammar or spelling skills! Or the insight that the woman he terrorized for three years doesn’t GIVE A SHIT about him or the fact that he has no right to insert himself into my life AT ALL, in any way.

    I’ve been holding this in since I got the first message, because there is NO ONE I can talk to IRL about how fucking violating this is. They wouldn’t get it.

    Posted by Melissa | March 17, 2007, 8:19 am
  17. Stormy said:

    “If these strategies don’t work, then I’ll have to employ some extreme measures.😉 ”

    Hey, Stormy, I’ll help you.
    🙂

    Mary

    Posted by Mary Sunshine | March 17, 2007, 9:59 am
  18. I read about this a few months ago but couldn’t get up the energy to deal with it on my blog. That whole step in AA irks me in general — IS is about humbly admitting/facing up to your wrong doings or — about selfishly erasing the guilt from your mind?

    In this case, there’s no question Beebe was thinking only of himself.

    And Stormy: When it comes to rape/DV I hear you. Myself, I like public sodomy for rapists in the town square. I’m only half kidding. My rage –what I could be capable of — against sex offenders truly frightens me.

    Posted by Kim | March 17, 2007, 11:38 am
  19. Melissa, I don’t blame you for being as mad as fucking hell over that ‘apology’.

    The whole “My name is Earl” thing is not about grammatically poor and emotionally bankrupt apologies, it is about making restitution for wrongs done. “Earl” always starts out by saying to the person “I’m sorry that I did X, and I really want to make it up to you”.

    One can tell by that guy’s writing that he’s just ‘going through the motions’. It’s all about making himself feel better. He’s just mindlessly ticking you off the list, with less-than-zero effort (even with two-fingered typing skills, that email would have taken what, 10 minutes tops??). There is no admission of what he’s done, or why he now thinks it wrong in retrospect. And the ‘biggie’ — what the fuck is he going to ACTUALLY DO to make it up to you? You are absolutely correct, rather than in any way, shape or form, this ‘apology’ does nothing to make you feel better, but instead relives the long-term injustice done to you. The bastard.

    I’m already blunting and rusting up a knife and it can be engraved “Dr Mike”. (or should that read “dr myke, aboosive assholl”?)

    MaryS, Kim, anyone else who wishes to self-deputise in the Department of Universal Justice, go right ahead!😉

    Posted by stormy | March 17, 2007, 3:03 pm
  20. Ah… at least the last comment only ended up in the moderation queue, and not the spam heap. Things are looking up!

    Posted by stormy | March 17, 2007, 3:05 pm
  21. “…about humbly admitting/facing up to your wrong doings or — about selfishly erasing the guilt from your mind?”

    It is about selfishly erasing the guilt from your mind.

    Posted by profacero | March 17, 2007, 3:12 pm
  22. Melissa… That took courage and strength to post. I dont know what I would do if I were in that situation. Actually my mom is presently in that situation with my dad. I love them both dearly, but I feel so angry, like what the f*** is wrong with YOU (dad)? Why cant he see that 24 years is a looong time of abuse and cannot be made up in a few days, with few words, and little recognition of what YOU did? I dont understand it.. maybe I never will but at least for my mom’s sake, I want to and am trying to.

    I just wish peace for you. It seems like its not enough that you are seperated from this jerk. It also seems like the common teaching is that “at least you tried, its up to her to forgive and let it go. You started the “healing” process and if she really wants it she will forgive you and begin to work on herself.” Thats BULLSHIT. I honest to goodness feel that it is coming from the damn church. Repent and sin no more, right? sigh…

    Posted by Divine Purpose | March 17, 2007, 4:28 pm
  23. profacero, I agree with you. It is selfish… its an attempt to feel guilt free. So that at least he can feel better, even if that means he causes her more pain by throwing it back in her face. The words alone “Sorry for any pain I caused you” are evasive… if he really wanted to “make amends” why not call out your own actions? Admit to all the shit you’ve done to this woman… Or better yet just leave her the hell alone…

    Posted by Divine Purpose | March 17, 2007, 4:31 pm
  24. I just came across this story from another blog. I can only hope that he is not issued with soap-on-a-rope in prison.

    What a sicko.

    Guys like him are everywhere.

    http://www.news.com.au/sundayheraldsun/story/0,,21346650-661,00.html

    Liz Seccuro is admirable for starting ““Sisters Together Assisting Rape Survivors”. Good on her.

    Posted by Fang | March 17, 2007, 6:11 pm
  25. Thank you Stormy and DP.🙂 You know what though? The more I think about it, there’s nothing he could ever do, not even a real apology where he lists in detail everything he did to me that he’s supposedly sorry for, that could make up for any of it, let alone compel me to forgive him. Some things are unforgivable. So yeah, DP, if I could I’d opt for “leave me the hell alone and let me go back to pretending you don’t exist.”

    Posted by Melissa | March 17, 2007, 7:41 pm
  26. A open stage rant on your local area’s poetry night? Doesn’t have to just make your delivery angry as hell, with a beginning middle and explanation why there is no end. They can’t deny it’s art.

    Posted by Pony | March 17, 2007, 7:58 pm
  27. I was sure I ty[ed the word “rhyme” there.

    Posted by Pony | March 17, 2007, 7:59 pm
  28. Sigh. I can’t see. Anyway, you could also wear a “tragedy” mask, if you want to further the point, but don’t want to lose your privacy. I wouldn’t tell the organizers what it’s about. You are a poet. Sniff.

    Posted by Pony | March 17, 2007, 8:02 pm
  29. So yeah, DP, if I could I’d opt for “leave me the hell alone and let me go back to pretending you don’t exist.”

    If I ever even bothered to correspond with him again, it would be to tell him that I would be filing legal action against him for harrassment if he ever tried to contact me further.

    Posted by gingermiss | March 17, 2007, 8:25 pm
  30. Also, with Melissa’s story, we see that once again the perpetrator downplays the true nature of their behavior. This guy says he’s doing the “My Name is Earl” thing, as if what he did was akin to bullying a kid on the playground. And he’s a doctor? I hope someone plunges an infected syringe into his testicles.

    Posted by gingermiss | March 17, 2007, 8:31 pm
  31. Melissa, how horrifying. 😦 You know, when something like this happens to us, I don’t think we truly breathe easy until the men who did it are dead. There’s nothing they can do to make anything right. I suppose there are some men who could convince us their apologies were sincere, but who would want to listen that long?

    Heart

    Posted by womensspace | March 17, 2007, 8:55 pm
  32. Progressive Gold has a trackback up there that is worth checking out, although he quoted a woman hater, who is probably a rapist himself, and the quote is pretty chilling.

    Heart

    Posted by womensspace | March 17, 2007, 8:58 pm
  33. Prog Gold is is two people and half female, though typically that female’s doing 3/4 iof the work and getting only half the credit.

    I’m that woman and Hi, all.

    As for quoting a woman hater, well, how else but by their fruits should we know them?

    Posted by Palau | March 17, 2007, 10:08 pm
  34. Welcome, Palau, nice to meet you, and true, once in a while, it’s good to remind people how hated women are.

    Heart

    Posted by womensspace | March 18, 2007, 12:29 am
  35. I ran into, well what the hell do I call him… I dont know, the situation is difficult, he was a friend of about 5 years pretty cool. Was so called trying to be there for me during a very low point in my life, and allowed his “desires” to come to the surface. I, naively, believed that he had no attraction, but said to him prior to his arrival at my house to not try anything because that was not what I wanted. I made that CLEAR as freakin window glass, and he responded saying he understood and he wouldnt do that just wanted to check on me and be sure I was ok and kick it… well the lil bastard DID have other ideas and DID come over with other intentions. He TOTALLY capitalized on my being depressed, long ass story wont tell it here, and tried to work his little disgusting agenda out on me. So, I do spoken word here, Pony great advice to melissa btw its quite liberating…, and he works in similar groups. I havent really been to events, because I dont want to see him, I dont perform as much, which is killin me…, because I dont want to see him. Today, I went to an event and he was there. He was lurking around me… a couple of my girls, I mentor them, wanted to go out for eats. I was up to that, but he decided to tag along… I had to sit across from him and put on this cheesy ass smile… I didnt touch my food, lied and said it wasnt so great, because I couldnt eat… What do you really do in these situations? I still blame myself, I mean I know that I didnt WANT him to try anything (I was a virgin and totally afraid…) I expressed that to him, he still saw an opportunity… I shouldnt blame myself, but I do… It really sucks, and I am trying really hard not to become depressed about it… It just throws you for a loop you know? I feel torn because why should I have to give up work that I love because this asshole will be present? Should I confront him? I dont think I have the strength to… I dont know what to do actually… I would love some feed back though…

    Who would’ve thought that I would be responding to melissa this morning, and then experiencing similar this afternoon??? sigh…

    Posted by Divine Purpose | March 18, 2007, 2:37 am
  36. I am totally confused by my not knowing what to do… I mean I work with girls who experienced similar… why is it that you cannot help yourself when in the situation?

    Posted by Divine Purpose | March 18, 2007, 2:41 am
  37. “I don’t think we truly breathe easy until the men who did it are dead.”

    That’s for damn sure, Heart, and there was a time, recently, where I thought there was at least a slight chance he could be dead (I won’t say why, because I think if I reveal much more about him he’d be able to find this). No such luck, though.

    Pony, apparently I’m a poet only when I’m having panic attacks! Finally, an upside!🙂

    Gingermiss, I didn’t respond to him at all, no way, because engaging him would just encourage him. Of course, ignoring him will probably enrage him, so I’m screwed either way. Once an abuser, always an abuser, and he knew exactly what he was doing when he contacted me: forcing me into a corner. One of his favorite tactics.

    Posted by Melissa | March 18, 2007, 6:02 am
  38. Melissa: I’m so sorry. I know how you feel. Hoping he leaves you alone. If not, maybe a terse “I don’t wish to ever hear from you again. Do not contact me again. If you bother me again, I will be reporting you to the authorities” kind of thing might scare him off.

    Posted by Kim | March 18, 2007, 9:48 am
  39. Melissa: An snippet from my blog about this sort of thing. Profanities deleted as I’m not sure of Heart’s poilicy on swearing. I swear –a lot — when it comes to this sort of stuff.

    Just to — I don’t know — let you know you’re not alone:

    “Sidenote One: when I lived 1000 miles away in Illinois, and basically all through my confident twenties, I thought I was “over” that [profanity deleted] stuff. Coming back to CT as a less-confident mom in my my thirties revealed scars I didn’t know I had. The phone call four or five years back didn’t help. Calling me on my birthday, I tell you! For [profanity deleted again]sake, this was an abusive, twisted high school “relationship.” You see how twisted that [again], calling, nearly decades after the fact, to wax nostalgic on the “good old days?”

    Interesting how the abusers/[again] can, over time convince themselves there was not only consent but warm memories, ey?”

    Unless I find me a magician of a therapist, this monster will always be a part of me. How I hate that. The last thing I/traumatized women need is contact from these types to remind us. Like we ever forget.
    Anyway, cyberhugs to you, M.

    Posted by Kim | March 18, 2007, 9:57 am
  40. “I don’t think we truly breathe easy until the men who did it are dead.”

    And a pile of steaming, feitd, fecal matter placed on the grave.
    I will do this, if given the chance. I’m not even kidding.
    Wow.
    I’m really quite angry.
    Signing off now …

    Posted by Kim | March 18, 2007, 10:08 am
  41. Yeah, Kim. The rapists, the perps, lie about what happened. They always do.

    And hey, feel free to swear as much as you want! The only kind of swearing that bothers me is women calling other women “b******” or “c****” or other sexist epithets, but I’ve never known you (or anyone who posts here) to do that. Anything else is a-okay.

    Heart

    Posted by womensspace | March 18, 2007, 3:38 pm
  42. Divine Purpose, the horrible situation you describe is SO common. I’m betting there are zero het women who haven’t had the experience you describe of some guy pretending to want just a friendship when he has other things in mind, and yeah, catch us in a low moment, all kinds of unfortunate things can happen. You’re so right not to blame yourself, feel guilty, nothing. Even if you believe you agreed to whatever it was, he was predatory and he exploited you and he’s an asshole. It’s horrible that you had to sit across from him and pretend, especially in a situation in which you are with the girls you are mentoring.

    I think, if the guy isn’t physically dangerous, I’d confront him. I wouldn’t do it alone in person, for sure. I’d do it by e-mail with copies, maybe blind copies, to someone or others you trust, or I’d do it in person accompanied by someone you trust as a witness. If it were me, I’d tell him straight up, in the presence of a witness, that I didn’t want him around me and to stay away from me. We don’t have to be in the presence of men who have exploited, disrespected and used us.

    Hugs,

    Heart

    Posted by womensspace | March 18, 2007, 3:48 pm
  43. DP, I’m sorry if it looks like I ignored your posts about running into that asshole. I swear they weren’t there when I posted earlier. Though I can’t give you any better advice than Heart just did.🙂

    Kim, a huge thank you and huge hugs for you, too. Go ahead and be as angry as you need to be.

    I’m feeling sappy now, and this is when being on the internet and not in person stinks. I want to give Heart a huge hug for this, the only space where I felt I could let all that out and actually have people understand. And I want to hug every other woman here because you all just rock. And I’m gonna shut up now because I write like a big dope when I’m not angry.😉

    Posted by Melissa | March 18, 2007, 4:31 pm
  44. AW… Melissa… you’re not writing like a big dope. Actually that just made me feel a lot better, because I was hesitant about posting that… sigh. You know that really wasnt easy, it also wasnt easy to get home and have that discussion with my fiance, but lucky for me he was understanding and embraced me and my pain and just offered that support. He didnt allow his temper to get in the way, cause that wouldnt have helped… as much as it is nice to hear someone say they want to beat the living day lights out of an asshole abuser, in that moment it just wasnt what I needed. Its ok melissa, I saw that it was still in moderation. Probably me calling him an asshole so many times. lol so this one will be in moderation too. I want to send hugs your way too…

    Heart, that was the hardest shit ever… man… I mean we were all just gonna go out for a bite after a pretty positive event and it was GREAT, but he wanted to tag along… that was hard and I was like well what the hell do I do? How the hell do I act? So I swallowed my pain and just put on a “brave” face. You’re right, men are FAMOUS for playing that friend card… you know the “hey sexy whats your name? I got a man. Well we can just be friends.” bit… But what sucks is that this particular jerk I HATED in the beginning, he was just rude and his ego… well lets just say there was enough to share with the world lol. But over time and through many conversations and endless debates I, for some reason, felt he was not as bad as I originally thought. Though now I know to always trust your gut.. Just like the day all that happened I felt in the depts of my belly, dont let him in… dont trust him. But I really just needed a friend. Going through drama with my family, and I had just moved out on my own… BLAH. It was just an ugly situation and I blame myself because I didnt trust myself, I didnt listen to that little voice, the one I always tell my girls to follow… I totally broke my #1 rule… NEVER trust a male friend to make important decistions for you… truly most men think with the wrong head. I am glad that things didnt go too far… who knows where I would be right now if it had, if that had been my first time?!?! But it still went further than I wanted it to. Especially seeing as I expressed to him I had no desire for him to try anything… I should have known right then to nip it in the bud and not trust anything he said… all my red flags were up and waving violently, but I was in no state to be rational or even capable of thinking for myself, you know? It’s a really long ass story maybe one day I will write it myself in my blog… I just cannot tell it all here.

    Posted by Divine Purpose | March 18, 2007, 5:02 pm
  45. Gingermiss, I didn’t respond to him at all, no way, because engaging him would just encourage him. Of course, ignoring him will probably enrage him, so I’m screwed either way. Once an abuser, always an abuser, and he knew exactly what he was doing when he contacted me: forcing me into a corner. One of his favorite tactics.

    You’re 100% right. I hadn’t really thought about that aspect, despite the fact that I’m so familiar with the tactic. Corresponding with him in any way would give him exactly what he wants – to know that he has some sort of control over you. I applaud you for having the savvy and serenity to know this and not be drawn into his little game.

    Posted by gingermiss | March 18, 2007, 9:17 pm
  46. I can’t believe I found this place. A pedophile raped my 11 year old daughter 13 years ago. I just found out about the rape 1 year ago. I could kill the guy (x boyfriend). He has wounded my daughter so badly that she is not being a very good mother. I wonder if it were her word against his if he could be sent to prison. I know this isn’t the first time he has done this.

    Be strong… I am a Christian and I think that guy should rot in jail/hell, 20 years ago or yesterday, it doesn’t matter. Do the crime, pay the time.

    Posted by Elizabeth | March 19, 2007, 4:24 am
  47. I’m so sorry, Elizabeth.

    Posted by frog | March 19, 2007, 4:30 pm
  48. It really sucks, and I am trying really hard not to become depressed about it… It just throws you for a loop you know? I feel torn because why should I have to give up work that I love because this asshole will be present?

    Don’t be depressed. He’s a sleazy manipulative predator, as has already been correctly emphasized by others.

    Above all else, don’t let him intimidate you into giving up something you love. He thinks he can force you into a corner. Don’t let him.

    Posted by gingermiss | March 19, 2007, 10:01 pm
  49. Ginger, I dont want to sound at ALL like I am excusing this asshole, because I am not, but I really dont even think he is trying to force me… We did this work together long before he was forceful with me… Now maybe it is just me still blaming myself… but I really think he feels in his heart of hearts that I WANTED him to make advances at me… How do you correct that? I mean thinking in that state of mind he wouldnt see WHY it is hard for me to be around him. So what do I do? Do I continue to be fake at events, do I give up my passion? I have been seriously MIA on the scene so much so that people thought I had moved out of state lol… now that is really bad especially when I had once been on the front line… I received so many emails asking, Lady Divine (Divine Purpose is my pen name I perform spoken word poetry) where are you?, well what do I do? Am I excusing this shit, I mean really its hard for me and I cannot even look at him without wanting to break down and cry, I dont know HOW the hell I was able to get through this weekend… Help me to see what I am missing because I dont want to just go forward with blinders on.

    Posted by Divine Purpose | March 19, 2007, 10:06 pm
  50. Am I excusing this shit, I mean really its hard for me and I cannot even look at him without wanting to break down and cry, I dont know HOW the hell I was able to get through this weekend… Help me to see what I am missing because I dont want to just go forward with blinders on.

    It seems like you’re being very hard on yourself because you don’t really know what course of action to take. I think you are making excuses for him, but only because you want to give people the benefit of the doubt, which isn’t a bad quality – just one that makes it harder for you to be standoffish with someone that you sympathize with.

    Let’s look at this even from the standpoint that he THINKS you wanted him to make an advance on you.

    – You repeatedly told him you didn’t want him to. He ignored you.

    – He knew you were in a vulnerable situation, and if he really cared about you he wouldn’t have preyed on that vulnerability.

    So, whatever he may have thought, his behavior was unacceptable. People have a falling out, and although they may have been friends for a long time, they stop for whatever reason. You don’t want this guy around you. That makes COMPLETE sense. He violated the trust of your friendship. He took advantage of you. You don’t have to feel guilty. That’s what HE did. I know all this is easier said than done, but once you are able to make it clear to him that you don’t want to associate with him anymore, you’ll feel liberated.

    From your comments, it’s clear that you really enjoy being such an active part of the spoken word movement. I think it would be a terrible shame if you fully removed yourself from that atmosphere because that’s where this guy is. Because he can’t keep a check on his own behavior, you have to stop doing something you love? Hell no.

    It’s not an easy situation, and any solution is going to require a lot of fortitude on your part. I would recommend going to the next event with a friend who is aware of the situation, and explaining to him that you’re not friends anymore, that there’s nothing he can say or do to change this, and that you don’t want him around you. If he doesn’t listen or if you still don’t feel like you can be there, then it’s time to reassess the situation.

    Posted by gingermiss | March 20, 2007, 12:43 am
  51. ginger, I really really appreciate this… omg… It hard, terribly hard and what you just said makes so much sense… I know I wont get this over night but I will keep that with me… Its just hard because I am blaming myself, something I am rather good at and grew up with… crazy ass oldest daughter position in an abusive home… everything under the FUCKING SUN was my fault. It is taking me YEARS to get past that… too many tears…

    You’re right, I absolutely adore spoken word, I love using my voice and my words to bring light to harsh realities, most of my work is about inequalities, ALL of them. I work with inner city youth, I am one actually lol. Its really really hard to handle all of this… it really happened over a year ago and I am just now able to talk about it… I know that is “normal” most people take years.

    I’m working on not blaming myself. I did tell him, he did take advantage… its like he held all that in for years and preyed on me when I couldnt oppose… but why? wouldnt you get more “satisfaction” in “winning” me legit? i dont get it… I just dont, and I dont know what good it will do to even bother to ask him that… you know what is funny, he is a musician in his CHURCH… HE IS A LEADER IN HIS CHURCH!!!!!!!!!!!!! This is the very thing that made me want nothing to do with the CHURCH! I just get so angry….

    I dont know what else to say… I feel like cryin, screaming, pulling out my hair………

    I will definitely keep your words in the forefront of my thoughts. Thank you…

    Posted by Divine Purpose | March 20, 2007, 12:58 am
  52. No problem. It does take a LONG time to permanently change your thought processes and your reactions to specific situations, but if you keep working on it I hope things will become easier eventually.

    I’m also the eldest of an abusive home. My father did everything he could to make everyone else feel responsible for his behavior but I knew better. Abusive asshole fathers like to do that; nothing is ever THEIR fault, and unfortunately the people around them internalize that concept.

    Posted by gingermiss | March 20, 2007, 2:40 am
  53. this is true… my mom adopted this idea that everything was my responsibility as well. Dont get me wrong I love her with all that I am, but we are not as close as we once were. Her staying caused all of us to suffer in some way or another, but I stepped up to spare those younger than I. It was easier for her to hold me at fault and take all her anger at dad out on me. It was easier for her to hold me responsible for picking up the babies from school, helping with homework, cooking cleaning, than it was to tell NON-WORKING dad to get off his ass and do something. It was easier to beat me, than it was to tell him to GO. I still live with that, and I cannot even look at her sometimes… Yet still I want her to have the help she needs and support she needs to heal and finally break away from him. They’re seperated, but “together” if that makes sense. And I LOVE my dad, LOVE my mom, but some things are not so easy to forget.
    🙂 It feels really good to have a space where I can say all of that, and not be judged, not be made to feel like I’ve let someone down. Ginger I am sure you know this one well, but as the oldest we become responsible for EVERYONE!!! We are to be the very essence of strength courage and wisdom, to our friends, siblings, parents, to everyone… I rarely ever cry, though I am quite an emotional person, because as a child there was no time to cry. There was no room to show weakness EVER. Always had to be on guard… Yet always blaming yourself for something or another… Its tough, and its not easy, but it really feels good to say this. I have never been able to voice that inner child, or let that little girl heal because I have always had to be so strong for everyone.

    Posted by Divine Purpose | March 20, 2007, 10:51 am
  54. *snort* If he were a new person now, then he SHOULD realize how much he had raped her, why what he did was so wrong! He should’ve confessed to the police too, not just to Liz Seccuro – just to make himself feel not guilty. Just because or if a victim accepts the apology, it doesn’t mean that he didn’t commit a crime.

    Rape is rape. Making someone drunk or drugged and then rape them is still rape.

    Posted by MJ | March 20, 2007, 1:30 pm

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