Work conversations (TW victim blaming)
The things my boss was saying have me really upset. She argued that some of the blame should be put on the victim in cases where drinking or skimpy clothing are involved. The old "meat in front of a dog" argument. I just couldn't believe what she was saying. At one point she even almost said "asking for it", but then held herself back, because consciously she knows that no one asks to be raped. I was so surprised and disappointed to hear this from someone that I look up to.
It was a very uncomfortable situation for me. On one hand I wanted to speak out and be angry, like I felt. On the other hand this is my boss, so I need to be extra respectful. I think I managed to do okay (thinking about it, I would have regretted anything I could do, so I think what I went with is acceptable). I brought up a few arguments and (blegh) assured her that I understood what she was talking about/her point was valid. I don't believe that at all, but this is my boss. I don't know. I just hope that what I DID say doesn't infringe on our relationship. At the same time, I don't think I spoke out enough.
I brought up that women are not food. I brought up the question of "where do you draw the line then?". I brought up that this type of victim blaming (didn't call it that) takes away from the blame on the rapist and allows him to go free and rape again.
To me it looked like she was trying to validate a point that has been beat into us since anyone can remember. She may have felt that it was wrong but it is hard to fight against the inertia of society. It is easier to blame the victim than the rapist. It makes us feel like "well, if I don't do xyz, it won't happen to me". It makes us feel safer. But the victim blaming argument is UNTRUE and it ironically makes us all less safe as a society, because blaming victims or encouraging them to internalize some blame helps rapists go free and rape again. (rape culture)
I thought about saying, but thank goodness didn't, my story. That I was assaulted when I was drunk and dressed slutty. That the guy went on to assault one of my friends, too. And how difficult it is for me to deal with that, to fight it, to keep telling myself that it wasn't my fault. To try to be rid of the enormous guilt that I feel every day.
People like her really hurt.