Rape and sexual assault are long understood to be crimes perpetrated by men, to women. And this generalisation isn’t without reason. Statistics indicate that in an overwhelming majority of the cases, women are the victims, and in Australia, it is estimated that 93 per cent of offenders are male.
But that does not mean that there are not cases of the reverse being true.
Today, a question was posted on Ask Reddit that read, “Men who have raped by women, what’s your story?”
In less than 16 hours, at the time of writing, the thread has attracted more than 1100 responses.
Sometimes, coercion can seem subtle. Post continues below.
The stories are varied, confronting and tragic. But for those of us who have rarely been subject to a simplified and gendered rape narrative, their accounts are profoundly insightful.
His roommate’s girlfriend.
James* was at college in the States, living with his friend Mark*.
Mark had been dating his girlfriend, Lucy*, on and off for about eight months. James describes her as a “tall, athletic, attractive redhead,” and says she fought a lot with Mark inside their apartment, particularly after they’d been drinking. A number of times, James had to physically break up the fight.
One Friday, Lucy invited James out with her and her friends. Hoping to meet some new girls, James went along. He says, “At one of the clubs, it’s my turn to buy a round, I’m standing at the bar, trying to tune out the loud music, when I feel an arm reach around from behind me and grab my crotch. Natural reaction, I turn to see who it was and see my roommate’s girlfriend standing behind me grinning… I carefully removed her hand, and tried to mentally brush it off as the alcohol getting to her.”
Eventually, they left, and James headed home and went to bed.
He doesn't know how much time passed, but he woke up to what he describes as, "something wet around my crotch area and on my stomach."
He woke up, startled that he might have "wet himself". But instead, he saw his roommates girlfriend straddled on top of him. James yelled, "What the f*ck are you doing?" and she replied, loud enough to suggest she was attempting to get the attention of her boyfriend, "Well someone else won't f*ck me!"
Afterwards, James says he laid there feeling sick. He ran to the bathroom and threw up.
James never brought it up with anyone, and says he thinks about it almost every day, with what he describes as a "tinge of shame."
An ex-girlfriend who threatened to yell rape.
Jack* and his former girlfriend had broken up about a month prior when he began seeing her around University. Lauren* approached him one afternoon and said she had a bunch of stuff she wanted to return to him.
Jack agreed, and Lauren followed him back to his car. Once they got there, Lauren asked if he would drive her to her car, which was around the corner. He reluctantly agreed, because he, "didn't want to seem like an asshole."
Once he began driving, she started begging for him to take her back. Jack adamantly said no. Lauren then offered to take him out to dinner because neither had eaten, and Jack agreed.
After they ate, Lauren told him she needed a lift home, which was about a 30-minute drive. Once they arrived, she refused to get out of the car.
"Then she moves her hand over my crotch," Jack recalled, "and I immediately tell her to stop and get out. She doesn't and tells me that if I don't f*ck her, she will get out of the car and yell rape. I'm 6'3 and a big dude, but I have never felt so small in my life."
Jack says he went completely "numb".
"I hate her," he concluded. "I hate myself for being kind, and I hate people that say guys can't get raped. I have never felt so humiliated in my life."
The girlfriend who raped him while he slept.
Toby was at his girlfriend's house after a party and decided to stay the night. As he had done previously, he wore just his boxers to bed.
"I remember feeling a tingling, almost like peeing when you have one of those dreams of yourself peeing... I woke up just in time to cut myself off from climaxing. I pushed her up and I scooted back," Toby writes.
His girlfriend moaned that she was close to orgasm and that he shouldn't be upset about it. Toby said to her, "You didn't wake me up," and she replied that she thought it was "hot" to just "take him" while he slept.
"Besides," she added. "Your dick was already hard when I came in. I know you wanted it." In shock, Toby replied, "I almost came in you. You could have gotten pregnant."
She just shrugged.
Toby left, confused, and said he felt "annoyed and used."
Interestingly, it wasn't just stories that were shared. Many had questions pertaining to consent, the most common being; "Is blackout having sex with someone you would never want to have sex with considered rape?"
The answer? An unequivocal yes.
Just because a man has an erection, does not mean he has given consent. Just because he is in your bed, does not mean he has given consent. Just because he is your boyfriend, or was your boyfriend, certainly doesn't mean he has given consent.
The myth that all men want sex all the time, is extremely damaging, and these stories demonstrate exactly why.
*Names have been changed.
If this post brings up any issues for you, or if you just feel like you need to speak to someone, please call 1800 RESPECT (1800 737 732) – the national sexual assault, domestic and family violence counselling service. It doesn’t matter where you live, they will take your call and, if need be, refer you to a service closer to home.