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Arousal During R+ape: It Has Nothing To Do With Consent or Pleasure

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Janilee Wolff
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« on: January 26, 2018, 08:12:10 pm »

Arousal During R+ape: It Has Nothing To Do With Consent or Pleasure

October 18, 2016

|

Tiernan Hebron

 


Talking about sexual consent has become increasingly more common in the past few years, as has education about what constitutes consent.

 

As our society attempts to transform our **** culture into a culture of consent, the concept of “yes means yes” and ongoing education about the depravity & ineffectiveness of victim blaming often follow suit. Hallelujah.

 

However, there is one topic that’s still considered taboo, and is often ignored as a result: arousal during ****. Because arousal during **** isn’t commonly discussed, there tends to be a ton of confusion and misinformation about whether or not it even occurs. Short answer: yes.

 

Take Republican candidate Todd Akin, who stated that “If it’s a legitimate ****, the female body has ways to shut the whole thing down.”

 

Ignorant statements and beliefs such as this can cause women to feel shame if they have experienced arousal during ****, which is not uncommon. Scientists Levin and Van Berlo have found that up to 21% of **** victims experienced arousal.  

 

In addition, according to a British nurse therapist, “Approximately 1 in 20 women who come to the clinic for treatment because of sexual abuse report that they have had an orgasm from previous unsolicited sexual arousal. It is not detailed in the [professional] literature because the victims usually do not want to tell/talk about it because they feel guilty, as people will think that if it happened they must have enjoyed it…’

 

Unfortunately, some believe that if a victim experiences arousal while being raped, that person must have enjoyed being raped. Some also believe arousal is synonymous with consent.

 

However, consent is not given by a person’s body parts, it is verbally given by a sober, informed, non-coerced partner. Because vaginas and penises can’t speak, it’s safe to say that they cannot give consent.

 

For those who believe that arousal during **** could be interpreted as enjoyment or for victims who feel guilty for having experienced arousal, there are scientific findings that explain why arousal occurs during ****—and it’s not because of pleasure.

 

Researchers Suschinksy and Lalumiere hypothesized that lubrication/arousal is an evolutionary trait to prevent a woman’s genitals from getting injured during sexual activity, which means that women would experience lubrication and arousal even during forced or unwanted sexual activity.

 

The corresponding study found that women respond to both positive stimuli (consensual sexual activity) and negative stimuli (unwanted sexual activity).  This means that arousal during **** is involuntary, which also means it does not constitute enjoyment.

 

Pleasure during sex is autonomous of the individual and is not decided by biology or another person’s beliefs.

 

Arousal during **** does not equate to consent, nor does it equate to pleasure. It is governed, instead, by biology.

 

Although these findings are sound, they are not widely understood, and many victims continue to feel shame for having experienced arousal, despite the fact that it was a biological response. 

 

Arousal during **** needs to be a part of the consent narrative we are spreading in order to change ra+pe culture for good.

 

 
https://www.creatingconsentculture.com/single-post/2016/10/18/Arousal-During-****-It-Has-Nothing-To-Do-With-Consent-or-Pleasure
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