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One of my relatives, 4 years older than me, became like a good friend in fact like best friends. We used to share every single matter of our life and were frank with each other. We used to talk so much on phone and spend time sitting together and discussing. I was happy that my cousin was my best friend with whom I could share everything.

Until his mother once felt that we were wrong somewhere. She doubted our relation of a brother and sister. She even complained about it at my place that it is me who is at fault. But at that time I went against my family and made them understand that it is nothing more than a god friendship bond that I share with my cousin. Though I was shocked as how could they even think of it in the first place?
But after some days when things were going pretty fine, my cousin broke my trust. I remember it was winter early morning and we were going somewhere for some work on a bike and he intentionally took the wrong turn and raped me. I couldn’t do anything. I told him not to but my voice was never heard what my soul was crying out loud to make him listen to me. I did not even understand what to do..If I run then what if people see me and if I shout and somebody turns up for help then what about the family reputation? With all these thoughts I chose to keep silent. I thought if I tell this at home then everyone will question me as I was supporting the pious bond earlier.

After that he started blackmailing him emotionally. By then he knew my weakness that I won’t tell to anyone. And h raped me several times and even if I warned to tell at home then he would say, “I’d leave home or commit suicide.” And I used to think of his parents and his family as what will happen to them if he commits such an act and at the end Ii kept silent.

One fine day I shared it with one of my friend and she forced me to tell to my mother and somehow I gathered the courage to tell my mom. But what happened next was not what I expected. There were thousands of restrictions imposed on me from then and to add to it I even used to get taunts from my mom. Earlier I was living with the burden alone and now when I had told and felt a bit relaxed then I had lost my freedom and respect at home.

I feel I also did not take action in the first time only which could have helped me but Ii felt very weak then. But after sharing with my mom and friend I had this courage and finally confronted him to stop that and have warned him now. I am free from violence now but I feel I have lost my wings in the process of dreaming to fly high.

 

*Name has been changed on request.

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My friend was raped by her cousin four years ago and never shared this with anyone until recently.

She belongs to a conservative family and though she has been rebellious all her life, she knows her limits. She didn’t have many friends and didn’t share everything with her parents because their set of values were a bit too traditional to match with hers. So the story of her rape was something that came to light very late, and she tells me that her parents remain unaware of it. I have decided to write about it after taking her permission to do so.

Her first cousin had always been different with her, behaving a little weird around her, as compared to how how he behaved with his other sisters. He first touched her during a family function. Though she chose to ignore it, the touch stayed in her mind anyhow. Any time he would find her alone, he would try to touch her, and it never felt like the brotherly touch. This kept on happening in every family function, so she started to avoid going for any by making excuses.

One day she was supposed to go to his place to collect some important papers. She was asked by her parents to go alone. She was scared, but knew that there won’t be any problem since her aunt would also be at home. She rang the doorbell, and it was her cousin who opened the door. She maintained her calm and entered inside. To her horror, she realized that her aunt wasn’t at home. Now she was scared. He asked her to come inside the room and collect the papers, so she went in. And then, it happened.

He forcefully grabbed her and pushed her onto the bed, leaning over and forcefully kissing her. With force, he held her down. She shouted and cried, asking him not to do so, but he didn’t stop. He slid his hand inside her clothes, and she tried desperately to stop him but he didn’t. He didn’t stop until he was done, raping her of her innocence and ripping out her soul. No help came, probably no one even heard her cries. Only when he was done did he release her. She cried. She couldn’t say a word, she was too horrified because she couldn’t stop it all from happening. Adding to the misery, he forcefully slipped a tablet inside her mouth. She knew what it was, and she was traumatized. He gave her the papers and asked her to leave immediately.

She came back home and was a little out of her senses. Her parents were going to arrive only after an hour. Till then, she just cried and thought about whether she should tell this to her parents or not. She decided she wouldn’t.

I did ask my friend why did she choose to not tell her parents about it? She told me that though her parents loved her, they were a little under the influence of the rest of the family and had the rape been disclosed it would have resulted in something really bad and horrific. She also never wanted to narrate this incident to anyone knowing that she would be judged. I asked her why she thinks so. She says she liked him. To be raped by a man she liked destroyed her hope of liking a man in the future. And frankly the way she said it, I didn’t even know how to comfort her or even if there was any way to do it.

This is, I suppose, only one aspect of our society where things go unreported because we fear about so many things, most of all our pride. The same logic goes for crimes against the opposite sex. The society finds it hard to believe that even a man can be raped, that even he can feel robbed off his dignity, that he can barely muster the courage to come up with the truth if such an incident happens to him.

I still remember how my friend asked me, “Does this even qualify as rape?“. She didn’t know if it did because she liked him and feels guilty about it. I simply tell her that if it happened against her wishes, it surely was a rape and that there is no need to feel guilty about anything that happened. I cannot assure her further because frankly none of us have the solution. Or, do we

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“I didn’t think women could rape until it happened to me.”
On the way back from my friends party. It was 1 in night. My friends were getting late. So we decided that I will get down at Dwarka Bus stand and these guys would rush back to respective places.
To our surprise bus stand had a few guys standing thereby. So they dropped me there and drove ahead. As I approached the bus stand, I was welcomed with uncomfortable and eerie stares. The group of guys approached me and started questioning and beating . ” Tu kaun hai? Ye humara ilaka hai” .(Who are you? This is our area.)
I was flabbergasted. I could not understand anything till a car came.  The black Mercedes with lady in her forties came to my rescue. She saved me from them and took me to a posh hotel.
I could smell something fishy. I got straight to her. “Main wo nai hun jo aap soch rahi hain.”  (I am not like what you are thinking.)
She was probably high. She forced me. I declined vehemently. She forced……
 I was shattered. But I could not express for I am a “man” in this male chauvinist society. And the male thing I was forced to do should be something to be proud of for “Men can never get raped”
*Name has been changed on request.
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I don’t know what to say about the double standards of our society. I believe almost every girl is told in their families to behave in a certain way, in a certain manner and follow some protocol as it seems. But I wonder if boys are also told the same? Are they also taught at homes to behave in a certain way? To not to harass anyone? To not to rape anyone?

I doubt.

2-3 months ago, I was dropped by bus at the bus stop and I started walking towards my house. There was this guy who was staring at me but I kind of ignored him and kept walking. Meanwhile two boys came on activa and the guy who was staring at me also joined them and they went away.
For a second I was relieved but the next moment I was horrified. The boys on activa asked the one who was staring at me, “Now you’ll rape her?”

I was dead scared and started walking fast towards home. I could never imagine that comment coming from them and even now when I think of it, it haunts me as what if my house was far away from bus stop or what if they had caught me or what would have happened then.

I am not safe any where. I wish the boys were also taught by their parents to respect the girls.

 

*Name has been changed on request.

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When we talk about rape, the discussion almost always revolves around the victim. What was she wearing? Was she alone? What was she doing out late at night? Was she under the influence of alcohol?

We barely talk about the rapist here. Why did he do what he did? What was going on in his mind? Is it possible that he was also abused?

Nisha Lilia Diu from The Telegraph spoke to a sex offender and her spine chilling conversation takes one to the dustiest corners of a rapist’s mind.

46-year-old Ravi (name changed on request) got a rape conviction and 2 indecent exposure convictions when he was young. He claims that he started offending when he was all of 15. Here are excerpts from Nisha’s conversation with him:

“I didn’t have much of a conscience about it when I was younger. I was just out to get what I wanted, damn everybody else.”

 

Ravi talks about how all he wanted was sex – so he just grabbed random women and got it. He shares how being part of a rebellious crowd doing drugs and not giving a damn about school led him into this life. “I had lots of relationships, but I wouldn’t describe any of them as romantic. I was looking for one thing: sex. That’s what my life was about when I was that age, chasing girls,” he says.

Other factors that led to this behaviour were being obsessed with pornography and sex. He says that he offended because it was exciting and he felt powerful.

“It gave me a certain feeling of power over that person. I wouldn’t have said it then, but it’s obvious to me looking back that I was lost and out of control.”

Ravi also shares about his bad experiences of sexual abuse when he was a kid. This was another reason for him to go a step ahead and offend. A feeling of power or control was what he craved for.

 

The 46-year-old also opens up about raping his girlfriend in 2001. “We’d been arguing and she’d left the house for a while and when she came back… I was very drunk. I forced her into the bedroom. I didn’t plan it. I still don’t completely understand why I did it. But I have a better sense of what triggers this behaviour in me now. I was under a lot of financial stress at the time. I wasn’t feeling good about myself. And I was drinking too much, which didn’t help. Now, I try not to drink at all,” he says.

On life in prison and the kind of people he met there:

From doctors to pilots, there are all types of men in there. Ravi goes on to talk about the sex offenders wing in prison and the kind of people he met there and also opens up about the abuse that he faced as a kid.

“While I was in therapy in prison, I talked for the first time about what happened to me in my childhood. I was sexually abused for about 2 years, from when I was 7. I was abused by people who were friends of my family, a man and a woman, and I suspect that my family might have been aware of that.”

 

Ravi thinks it played a major role in his behaviour later. He claims that he felt powerless because of the abuse and could do anything to take charge once again.

However, not everyone in the prison was like Ravi. Some still thought that it was the victim’s fault – that they had lead them on.

So, what changed?

It took three separate stints in prison and 6 years of treatment and counselling to feel better. A treatment programme for sex offenders who return to the community called Circles helped too, he tells Nisha.

He says he still talks to volunteers at Circles for he knows that whenever he feels weak, he has someone to talk to instead of going crazy.

Ravi leads an almost normal life now. He even decided to be honest with his present girlfriend about his offences and he is glad that she took it well. It’s been a hard time for him, but he is finally out of the vicious cycle that offending had become for him.

Source – http://www.telegraph.co.uk/women/womens-life/11720655/Sex-offender-Why-I-became-one-and-started-raping-women.html

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