i read an awesome article, which i think does way more justice to this lie than i could. so, i encourage you all to take a look at “what science has to say about sexual arousal during rape” in popular science by jenny morber, to get more of an understanding why experiencing sexual arousal or an orgasm during a rape or sexual assault does not indicate enjoyment or consent.
this is one of the things many victims would never disclose, even after seeing a therapist for years, and accepting the rape wasn’t their fault. why is this? aside from the obvious reason being most people don’t talk about orgasms or sexual arousal because it’s the dark, dirty secret of most peoples lives, but there is also so much ignorance around the topic of sexual arousal in the general population.
when i was first intrigued by this notion, i took my question to google.com, and was shocked and dumbfounded by much of the online insight to this tough topic. many people, who i have to assume are internet trolls, lead others to believe that women experience an orgasm during rape, because deep down inside, they enjoyed the rape. the article i linked to in this post actually talks about one such blogger who has this same notion.
it saddens me that the first answers to come up on the internet for individuals searching for support on this issue, lead victims further down the road of guilt and shame. i think as uncomfortable as this topic is, the church needs to take a role in educating people about God’s design when it comes to sex and pleasure.
God created the body to operate like a machine. we have thousands of nerve endings that detect stimuli, but our bodies can’t decipher between good and bad touch. as one author put it;
“before you chastise yourself for one more minute, remember that your sexual organs do not have a brain. they cannot distinguish between a mauling rapist and the gentle touch of a lover. they simply react to the stimulation the way they were physically designed to respond. if you climaxed or had some other sexual response to the rape, this does not mean that you enjoyed it.” aphrodite matsakis.
it’s also important to recognize that 78% of sexual assault victims know their offender. with this in mind, we need to get away from that idea that the sexual predator is the creepy old man, or the man clothed in dark clothes lurking behind the bushes in an empty park. sexual perpetrators are our family members, our spouses/partners, friends, co-workers, etc.
rape can happen to anyone, at any age, of any sex/gender, and ethnic background. any sexual assault victim can experience sexual arousal and/or orgasm during their assault, regardless of who their perpetrator was/is.
God created sex and sexuality to be a beautiful identity for His children, but the enemy always has a way of perverting God’s design. for, what appears to be, forever, the enemy has taken sex and sexual arousal as his creation, but i believe God desires to and can redeem the sexuality that was taken from His children. i believe that it is time for the church to reclaim the blessings that God has bestowed on His children and focus on educating people on those, rather than the ways the enemy perverts things.
how often have you heard the church talk about homosexuality or having sex outside of marriage or even the dreaded, evil sin of masturbation? not that i am proposing an entire sermon on, “how to get down with your spouse” but i think churches need to make their sermons more equal. churches need to fully understand God’s blessings to be able to identify the enemy and all his evil ways.
when the church places emphasis on the blessings of the Lord, this makes healing a much better, and safer place for victims of sexual assault. rather than receiving blank stares and stumbled words in response to opening up about a rape, victims would be able to receive the promises of the lord!
as a society, we must get to a place where we allow others to define their own experiences, rather than trying to define them for them. being sexually assaulted is hard enough without having the shame of what your body did during the assault thrown in your face.
God created your sexuality, and it is up to you on how you define your sexuality, not the worlds, not societies and not the enemy.
check back next week for my final post on lies society tells us about rape.