What men don’t understand is that women are FIERCELY PROTECTIVE of underage girls because we remember when we were young and some adult man made us uncomfortable or manipulated us or was inappropriate with us and we were powerless.
When [an abusive man] tells me that he became abusive because he lost control of himself, I ask him why he didn’t do something even worse. For example, I might say, “You called her a fucking whore, you grabbed the phone out of her hand and whipped it across the room, and then you gave her a shove and she fell down. There she was at your feet where it would have been easy to kick her in the head. Now, you have just finished telling me that you were ‘totally out of control’ at that time, but you didn’t kick her. What stopped you?” And the client can always give me a reason. Here are some common explanations:
"I wouldn’t want to cause her a serious injury."
“I realized one of the children was watching.”
“I was afraid someone would call the police.”
“I could kill her if I did that.”
“The fight was getting loud, and I was afraid the neighbors would hear.”
And the most frequent response of all:
"Jesus, I wouldn’t do that. I would never do something like that to her.”
The response that I almost never heard — I remember hearing it twice in the fifteen years — was: “I don’t know.”
These ready answers strip the cover off of my clients’ loss of control excuse. While a man is on an abusive rampage, verbally or physically, his mind maintains awareness of a number of questions: “Am I doing something that other people could find out about, so it could make me look bad? Am I doing anything that could get me in legal trouble? Could I get hurt myself? Am I doing anything that I myself consider too cruel, gross, or violent?”
A critical insight seeped into me from working with my first few dozen clients: An abuser almost never does anything that he himself considers morally unacceptable. He may hide what he does because he thinks other people would disagree with it, but he feels justified inside. I can’t remember a client ever having said to me: “There’s no way I can defend what I did. It was just totally wrong.” He invariably has a reason that he considers good enough. In short, an abuser’s core problem is that he has a distorted sense of right and wrong.
I sometimes ask my clients the following question: “How many of you have ever felt angry enough at youer mother to get the urge to call her a bitch?” Typically half or more of the group members raise their hands. Then I ask, “How many of you have ever acted on that urge?” All the hands fly down, and the men cast appalled gazes on me, as if I had just asked whether they sell drugs outside elementary schools. So then I ask, “Well, why haven’t you?” The same answer shoots out from the men each time I do this exercise: “But you can’t treat your mother like that, no matter how angry you are! You just don’t do that!”
The unspoken remainder of this statement, which we can fill in for my clients, is: “But you can treat your wife or girlfriend like that, as long as you have a good enough reason. That’s different.” In other words, the abuser’s problem lies above all in his belief that controlling or abusing his female partner is justifiable….
Lundy Bancroft, Why Does He Do That? Inside the Minds of Angry and Controlling Men (via seebster)
we do men and women a disservice by teaching young boys and young men how to be men. because society, media, telivision, everything tells them they need to be aggressive. they need to be in control and powerful. we encourage this behavior. we give them no other possible ways of being a ‘man’. we limit their ability to express their emotions in any other way than through violence. as though turning to it proves their masculinity. the toxic nature of this gendered view is what produces abusive men.
people who think lesbians are more accepted in society than gay men are idiots
lesbians are more sexualized. they’re seen as a hot thing for straight men to watch but only if both girls are conventionally attractive. otherwise, it’s seen as disgusting or unnatural. that is not acceptance. that is fetishization.
“If you point out casual racism on a regular basis, you’re going to get a lot of people whining that you’re too ‘politically correct,’ which is not a phrase that actually means anything anymore, besides saying of its speaker, ‘I am nostalgic for a time when I could be as racist as I wanted and nobody bugged me about it and thus I would like you to just shut up now you dumb person with your stupid thinky brain thoughts trying to infiltrate the hostile and unmovable lump of granite I replaced my mind with.’”—
“Do what you love” disguises the fact that being able to choose a career primarily for personal reward is a privilege, a sign of socioeconomic class. Even if a self-employed graphic designer had parents who could pay for art school and co-sign a lease for a slick Brooklyn apartment, she can bestow DWYL as career advice upon those covetous of her success.
If we believe that working as a Silicon Valley entrepreneur or a museum publicist or a think-tank acolyte is essential to being true to ourselves, what do we believe about the inner lives and hopes of those who clean hotel rooms and stock shelves at big-box stores? The answer is: nothing.