Jori’s story filled me with rage. I do not think that growing up under similar circumstances is necessary to empathise with her.
Reading her story brought to mind my own childhood of abuse due to similar beliefs.
This type of environment can be found in any religion that believes that women are inferior to men. I had many similar experiences with reporting my molestation to my parents. They didn’t believe me for years until they caught the person abusing me. To this day it irks me that my gender meant that any complaints against a male meant punishment for me. Usually by the hands of the male I was trying to escape from.
I have grown up to be almost incapable of functioning properly in society as a direct result of my upbringing. Sure, just like Jori I don masks that I was taught were acceptable and for the most part they work. The net effect of a lifetime of doing this is that I don’t know which personality is mine. I also have a lot of trust issues. Mostly, I can’t trust strangers. I am utterly terrified of them. So terrified in fact, that I often get panic attacks in public places.
Many years ago my father took me to see a psychiatrist, that was probably one of the worse experiences of my life. The man who was supposed to help me come to terms which my mental anguish, instead tried to further cement the programming that had been hammered into me for as long as I can remember. That I was female and flawed, that it was somehow my fault I had suffered years of abuse and that the myriad health problems that were piling up on me due to parental neglect was my lot in life because God would never give me more than I could bear. I begged to differ, one does not see a psychiatrist because one is well adjusted. One sees a psychiatrist because one is either broken or very close to breaking.
Granted, I should probably see a psychiatrist to see if I can get rid of the mental baggage that’s plaguing my life but I really don’t need another charlatan playing around in there. Besides I think I’ve done an okay job dealing with it on my own. The depression I deal with on a daily basis has more to do with being chronically ill than my upbringing.
I wouldn’t call that article a rape trigger even though it made me remember my childhood. If anything it’s a mental woe is me flag. One that reminds me that rape culture really is a thing, one that needs to be done away with.