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The video above is not my own, however, it conveys many of the points I make in the following post.
I'll get straight to the point: I want to prevent rape and molestation.
But I realized something; it's going to take a lot of people - people who have a strong sense of empathy and strong stomachs to succeed in prevention. I say this because everyone has been trying to find the solution to this problem by changing the VICTIMS, and yes, I am referring to victim shaming. Which, let's be real, is like blaming a bird for getting eaten by a cat.
The solution isn't to EQUIP women with weapons or self defense (though I am completely for those things). It's not about potential victims being more careful, dressing differently, perpetual sobriety, conducting themselves in a way that is ALWAYS reputable. NO.
The solution lies with the predator, or how most people prefer to label them, the "monster." Because no matter what a potential victim does, they are still liable to be sexually assaulted. It's only through predators (you know, the ones who COMMIT assault), that rape and molestation can be prevented.
So, how do you stop a predator from committing sexual assault? There's no one answer, since not all predators are the same. If you could categorize them into boxes there would already be a decline of rape and molestation. But their mind sets and character all differ. Just take this article for example:
That article just refers to rape of adults by men, that doesn't even touch upon child molestation. The men studied in that article who committed sexual assault did not claim to have raped anyone. To them, there is a difference between rape and non-consensual sex. What that difference is... 🤷♀️
I didn't believe that rape and molestation could, necessarily, fall into the same "box"/"vein." However, upon further research, I found a definition that groups both rape and molestation into the same category, along with other sexual disorders; called paraphilic disorders.
According to DSM 5 (Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, 5th Edition), a paraphilic disorder is defined as "persistent and intense atypical sexual arousal patterns that are accompanied by clinically significant distress or impairment." Or how the above website worded it, "recurrent, intense, sexually arousing fantasies, urges, or behaviors that are distressing or disabling and that involve inanimate objects, children or nonconsenting adults, or suffering or humiliation of oneself or the partner with the potential to cause harm." God, that's a mouthful of psychoanalysis.
So... we have the "politically correct" term to use for predators, but the question remains; how do you stop them from committing sexual assault?
Personally, I believe that anything you keep in the dark... grows. What you keep hidden is what can fester. It becomes an entity looming over your head and follows you around like a shadow. But that's only if you don't tell anyone. I am a firm believer in NOT HIDING. Which is why, I believe, the answer in preventing sexual assault is by opening a space for predators to safely discuss their atypical fantasies/urges.
If you don't believe me, here's an article from an M.D. that describes how keeping secrets is like swallowing poison.
There exists interviews with pedophiles who understand that their... mentality, should not be acted upon. They know that any action taken could result in causing harm to another person. That is significant for other people (i.e. parents and those who do not suffer from abnormal sexual thoughts) to understand.
Those who suffer from particular paraphilias and do not wish to act upon them deserve the respect of being heard. That is why I think there needs to be a place for them to speak about their... philias, without being called a "monster" or being shamed in anyway. Because if they are received negatively, they become withdrawn, they may revert to denial, but worst of all; they end up swimming in their own fantasies, with a growing desire to "quench their thirst," as it were. And there in lies a future sexual assault.
However, if they are received positively, and they are NOT shamed for their particular thoughts, that gives their desires/urges less control or power over them. Resulting in self restraint. Thus, preventing molestation or rape.
The thing is, people who have a similar take on this matter receive a lot of backlash. They're called sympathizers or society views them as people with mental disorders themselves. Take for instance the founder of "The Prevention Project." On the Home page is a public service announcement speaking against what media has said about the founder and the organization.
I understand that when it comes to how people view children, society has a zero tolerance policy. But if society wants to keep children safe, they can no longer silence those who are trying to make a difference or those who suffer from paraphilia. It needs to be discussed and not just discarded into the proverbial trash as "shameful and unacceptable."
To quote the founder of The Prevention Project, "prevention IS the intervention."
Now, don't get me wrong; it is not lost on me that some people who have some form of paraphilia, have no remorse and don't believe or don't care that they're sexual desires are destructive/wrong/hurtful. There are some rapists/people who have committed sexual assault who believe their victims deserved being assaulted.
To that, I have to quote an uncited source (I have not asked permission to publish this person's words), "addiction has to do with substances that we do not need; such as drugs, alcohol, gambling... but we need sex."
Now, by no means am I justifying people's terrible actions, I'm just saying that's what blow up dolls are for. But on a serious note, there are offenders who see that their offense was wrong and are "recovering." It's important to pay attention to THESE cases, in particular, because it's with THESE paraphilics that we can better understand and stop those who are in denial of their mentality and could eventually commit assault.
So here's the short version: How do we prevent rape and molestation? By DISCUSSING the mentalities of those who would commit assault. Giving them a chance to speak and listening to them without shaming them.