Monday, January 28, 2013

Date Rape Prevention

Date Rape Prevention
According to ACADV (Alabama Coalition Against Domestic Violence) 38 percent of date rape victims are girls between the ages of 14 to 17. Their website reports, “More than half [the] young women raped (68 percent) knew their rapist either as a boyfriend, friend or casual acquaintance.”
It is difficult to ignore the magnitude of these statistics. And yet, women and young women in our culture are apt to say, “it won’t happen to me” and parents say, “it won’t happen to my child.” This mentality creates a bubble of ignorance and denial about these topics.
One proactive approach to prevention is having a plan for dating safety, whether for yourself or for your children. The Domestic Violence Advocacy Program of Family Resources, Inc. offers these preventative measures so that young women are not put in a situation which will make them feel unsafe.

Dating Safety
  • Consider double-dating the first few times you go out with a new person.
  • Before leaving on a date, know the exact plans for the evening and make sure a parent or friend knows these plans and what time to expect you home. Let your date know that you are expected to call or tell that person when you get in.
  • Be aware of your decreased ability to react under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
  • If you leave a party with someone you do not know well, make sure you tell another person you are leaving and with whom. Ask a friend to call and make sure you arrived home safely.
  • Assert yourself when necessary. Be firm and straightforward in your relationships.
  • Trust your instincts. If a situation makes you uncomfortable, try to be calm and think of a way to remove yourself from the situation.
Other tips anonymous women have provided when dating someone for the first time:

  • Meet somewhere well-lit in public. Having dinner at a restaurant with other people around is safer than going someplace alone with him like his house or even hiking in the woods in the evening.
  • Meet somewhere familiar. Perhaps it is a coffee shop that you frequent where the wait staff knows you by face or name.
  • Select a location with multiple exits.
  • Never get in a car with someone you don't know.
  • Don't leave your drink unattended at a party, bar or restaurant.
Resources, blogs and websites for rape prevention, therapy and statistics:
Please thank author Jim C. Hines for providing the majority of these links. This is a list in progress. Feel free to make suggestions of other websites.

Blog posts - Use the rape tag to find related posts.
      • Thoughts on Men and Rape. The huge problems with treating rape as a “women’s issue.” 4/21/08.
      • Sleeping Beauties. Because asleep does not equal consent, dammit! 4/1/09.
      • Writing About Rape. Because so many published authors write about rape, and do it so badly.  4/7/09.
      • Significant Others. How rape affects both the survivor and those around her/him, and what I’ve learned from being in the S.O. role.  4/22/09.
      • Victim Blaming. Responding to an incident in which the Stamford Marriott blamed a rape victim for her own attack, claiming she “failed to exercise due care for her own safety and the safety of her children and proper use of her senses and facilities.”  8/14/09.
      • Rape in Fandom. Discussing rape at conventions and other SF/F circles, and the need to speak out. 2/26/10.
      • Steubenville, Ohio rape December 2012
      • New Delhi rape exposes the peril of being a woman in. India rape on the rise:  1/3/13

Other Resources:

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Book Review: Plain Facts for Old and Young: Natural History and Hygiene of Organic Life (Sex, Marriage & Society Series)

Book Review: 

Plain Facts for Old and Young: Natural History and Hygiene of Organic Life (Sex, Marriage & Society Series)  

Or in Lady Chatterley's words, Children of the Corn Flakes

A number of years ago, Lady Chatterley remembers reading about Dr. John Harvey Kellogg, the inventor of Corn Flakes, and how his religious zealotism discouraged sexual health to the point that he suggested castration and using acid to burn away genetalia. Recently she attended a workshop on Victorian sexuality through a local chapter of Romance Writer's of America and his name was referred to again. But to imagine where this zealot came from, imagine the era:

At the end of the 1800's, sexually transmitted diseases were life threatening and caused death.

Sexuality considered a sin punishable by eternal torment. (As if the STDs weren't enough.)

Masturbation was thought to cause blindness, mental retardation and other maladies.

To those obsessed with health and religion such as Kellogg, the words sexual health meant abstinence. And this abstinence had to be maintained by any means as these quotes from his books via Wikipedia explain.

In his Plain Facts for Old and Young, he wrote:
A remedy which is almost always successful in small boys is circumcision, especially when there is any degree of phimosis. The operation should be performed by a surgeon without administering an anesthetic, as the brief pain attending the operation will have a salutary effect upon the mind, especially if it be connected with the idea of punishment, as it may well be in some cases. The soreness which continues for several weeks interrupts the practice, and if it had not previously become too firmly fixed, it may be forgotten and not resumed.
a method of treatment [to prevent masturbation] ... and we have employed it with entire satisfaction. It consists in the application of one or more silver sutures in such a way as to prevent erection. The prepuce, or foreskin, is drawn forward over the glans, and the needle to which the wire is attached is passed through from one side to the other. After drawing the wire through, the ends are twisted together, and cut off close. It is now impossible for an erection to occur, and the slight irritation thus produced acts as a most powerful means of overcoming the disposition to resort to the practice
In females, the author has found the application of pure carbolic acid (phenol) to the clitoris an excellent means of allaying the abnormal excitement.

In his Ladies' Guide in Health and Disease, to prevent masturbation, he suggested:
Cool sitz baths; the cool enema; a spare diet; the application of blisters and other irritants to the sensitive parts of the sexual organs, the removal of the clitoris and nymphae...

 These disturbing books are available on Or if you really want to support Kellogg's legacy, all you need do is buy a box of Corn Flakes.