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25515 Posts in 9752 Topics by 980 Members Latest Member: - Roots Dawta Most online today: 63 (July 03, 2005, 11:25:30 PM)
+  Africa Speaks Reasoning Forum
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| |-+  Kiwumulo Nakandi Galabuzi (Moderator: Nakandi)
| | |-+  An experience with male sexual entitlement
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Author Topic: An experience with male sexual entitlement  (Read 4915 times)
Nakandi
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« on: October 18, 2013, 10:44:50 PM »

Imani, not his name, was excited to hear that I was back in town. He was disappointed to learn that I had come back home from abroad, had been around for some time and was leaving in two days. ''Why didn't you call me earlier?'' he asked. I did not have an answer for that. ''I will take the day off to come see you.'' I didn't mind it, so I gave him the address. It turned out he lived quite far from me, but he had no choice since I was to leave so soon.

When Imani came over he had carried quite a load with him. As it was, he had spent the morning going around different markets buying all the fruits, vegetables and snacks I like. (I was traveling out of the country and he felt I should leave with a piece of home). I was moved by his actions. We had not seen each other for three years yet he still remembered all these. Another reason it felt so good was because it had been  such a rare occasion for me for an African male to do something like that for me. I was so happy I took pictures of what he had bought me. What I did not know was that I was taking a picture of what my vagina is worth – to him. As if the gifts weren't enough, Imani helped me pack and repair some things I thought would never work again. Some of them were of sentimental value so I was physically moved into a dance of gratitude.

Later that evening I had plans to meet someone in town, but did not know how to get where we had agreed to meet. Imani, the caring person he was, offered to drive me to wherever I was going. I got ready and off we went. As we approached the venue I got a phone call. The person I was to meet was engaged in something and would be an hour  or so late. I didn't have much to do in the city at that time, so when Imani suggested we go back to his place and wait I accepted. It was after all, ''not that far from here'' and he would drive me back ''whenever I wished''.

The apartment was indeed not so far, but I didn't know the location well. It was getting dark and the roads were quickly being deserted. This brought some kind of uneasiness within. ''However nice a man is, he can turn around and do the worst to a woman'', my mother used to tell me. That sentence made me think of what could happen in this apartment we found ourselves in. There was load shading that night so we moved in complete darkness as he looked for a lamp. I was somehow relieved when some light tried to battle with the overwhelming darkness, as if it would help me if the worst came to the worst.

Imani shared with me music of his people, translated the beautiful words of the songs, narrated myths he grew up with. I was enjoying myself. Until he kissed me. I was so puzzled. It was such an energetic kiss. Where did it come from? What in our conversations invited it? Why did he do it? He kissed me again. I sat still as I escaped into myself. I was taken aback, completely unprepared and unaware of what to do in such a situation. He took so much liberty that it looked as if we had made a plan to sleep together. I cannot explain how, but even though he didn't say it, his eyes were saying, ''what about all I have done for you?'' Slut shaming (I disagree with this term, but use it here to drive a point home) had taught me that this is a case of ''you were asking for it''. And indeed I felt like I had asked for it. Why had I come home alone with a male I hadn't seen for so long? Didn't I know what he was capable of doing?

Even though I didn't respond to his kisses and movements, he didn't stop. More and more I felt that he felt like he had every right to touch me and explore my body. I, too, felt as if he was entitled to my body however he wished at this point. Hadn't I let him take a day off? Hadn't I accepted his gifts? Hadn't I made him drive me around? Wasn't it I who spoke of female autonomy and assured him I stand up for myself? Wasn't it that quality that made him admire me, as he kept telling me in the car?

When the movements became forceful (he was being filled with passion, as he whispered) I started to negotiate with myself. I have a lot of biases towards rape victims, so I was determined not to be one. I talked myself into wanting to have sex with him. After all, he was nice, caring, intelligent and many would find him attractive. I don't know why I didn't make an attempt to actively stop him. I don't know why I didn't make an excuse and run out. These are ideas that came to me after it all happened. All I remember is that in that moment I didn't want to put up a fight – what if I lost it?

Trying to detach myself from my body didn't work, therefore I participated. I let him fully undress me and watched him undress. I asked him to put on a condom and he did (for which I was SO thankful) and I opened my legs. While he was moving, I wanted to strangle him. Scratch him. Bite him till his lips fell off. When he was done, I went into the shower and washed off. The very cold water felt good. It felt as if I had washed away the shame I had brought onto myself. I dried off and told myself not think much about it, because I had wanted the sex as much as he did. I told myself that for three months.

One night, three months later, I couldn't sleep. I kept picturing myself in Imani's apartment. ''Why did you go there alone with him. You know what a man's ''kindness'' comes with. Why didn't you fight him off? Why didn't you simply say no? Why do you feel bad about it? Were you raped?''

It has been more than a year since that incident. I have reflected and worked over some of the dynamics of that whole day. '' Why did you go there alone with him. You know what a man's ''kindness'' comes with.'' I have since learnt that no amount of anything – money, gifts, time – anything entitles anyone to sex. Alone with him or not, it doesn't put me at fault and again, doesn't entitle him to my body. ''Why didn't you fight him off? Why didn't you simply say no'' It is easy to think what should have been done in hindsight. But if I were to dare speculate, it is probably because I felt I owed him something for all his care. And no one ever told me it is perfectly okay to say NO after someone goes out of their way to please you.

Was I raped? I am still trying to figure that one out. I do not know if I can call it that. I do not know if I want to call it that.

I have not spoken to Imani since. I didn't tell him how I really felt right after either. I dreaded meeting him for some time, but now that I have dealt with the incident to a certain extent I feel I can see him. I don't know whether I will ever tell him though. I have not come to a conclusion of whether I should let him in on it. Is there a point in doing so?
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Belle
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« Reply #1 on: October 20, 2013, 04:31:08 AM »

You're right KiwNak "that no amount of anything – money, gifts, time – anything entitles anyone to sex." I understand your conflicting thoughts. The decisions that a woman has to make are never as easy. You ignored your subconscious, your sixth sense, because you did not want to assume that it was sex he was after, that perhaps he was being genuine.

He should have sensed that you were uncomfortable, instead of being so caught up in his lust. Perhaps you did not fight back as you rightly identified " what if I lost"- you could have been seriously injured. Then there would have been the aspect of whether or not if you wanted to report it, then there is the taboo that is attached to rape.

You don't have to necesarrily keep in contact with him, but if you do, you can tell him how you feel about it but his male ego may become bruised which may result in him reacting negatively. Or if & when you decide to  contact him, knowing what you now, you can ensure to keep your distance away from him.

Hope this was helpful.

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Nakandi
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« Reply #2 on: October 20, 2013, 10:19:08 AM »

Thank you Belle. That was indeed helpful. There is something in being 'heard'.

I wouldn't go out of my way to see him as I do not see that as necessary. On the other side, how will males learn about these kind of behaviors if we do not confront them? As you say, male ego might stand in the way. Plus I wouldn't dare be alone with him again. So with another person in the conversation, I doubt there would be a positive reception.
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Belle
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« Reply #3 on: October 20, 2013, 05:28:16 PM »

Hmm... I sincerely wish I had an answer for that question. Sighs

Especially when we live in a society where most men believe it ( society) belongs to them, thus their rules, their game. They think they are always entitled to sex. For example, in marriages, most men think it is an automatic pass to a woman's body. If the wife refuses him.... well he won't see it as rape! Perhaps the best solution is to socialize our males into respecting us as individuals and not as possessions.

*Hugs*
Belle

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