What Ms Magazine Doesn’t Want You to Know

April 25, 2011

(Trigger Warning: If you’re the type that needs trigger warnings, then this post is not for you.)

Last week, Ms magazine blogged about false accusations of rape. The author of that post, Stephanie Hallett, was quick to conclude that false accusations are not a problem. She was also eager to convince readers that alcohol and mental disorders should never be a factor when considering the validity of such accusations. So eager, she has resorted to demonizing anyone who dares to question any accusations of rape. One has to wonder why she considers herself an expert in these matters.

More importantly, why is Ms. Hallett so eager to silence the conversation about alcohol abuse and mental disorders as it pertains to false accusations???

Before we decide that all accusations of rape are true, shouldn’t we investigate each case and the women who make such accusations? And if we find a history of questionable behavior, shouldn’t that raise eyebrows? If somebody passes out because they drank too much, how can we expect them to remember details of that night? Even people who were lucid enough to remember giving consent have later recanted and revised their story. This is not to say that claims by people with a history of alcohol abuse and mental disorders are automatically bogus. I’m just suggesting they deserve a grain of salt.

Ms. Hallett was good enough to provide the following stat:

studies have shown that in 55 percent of rape cases, alcohol or drugs are involved. In acquaintance rape cases, that number is sometimes as high as 80 to 90 percent

Clearly alcohol contributes to rape. So wouldn’t it makes sense that it also contributes to false accusations as well? Ms. Hallett was quick to say no. But I believe it deserves some exploration.

We live in a culture that promotes drinking. Which means we have normalized what most addiction specialists would consider signs of alcoholism. For instance, we think it is normal for people to drink and black out. It is not. It is neither normal nor healthy. What people don’t want to hear is that blacking out is a clear sign that someone is an alcoholic. Dr. Dombeck explains:

Blacking out while drinking is an absolutely CLASSIC sign of ALCOHOLISM, and not minor alcoholism either, but the big league stuff. You are almost certainly addicted to alcohol in terms of physiological dependence (the formal diagnosis is “Alcohol Dependence”, or “Alcohol Abuse” and yes it is physiological and not just in your head. People with drinking problems can be expected to minimize their use of alcohol when describing it so I take what you are saying with a grain of salt figuring it is an underestimate of what you actually consumed…

Oh but hold the press, Stephanie Hallett is back again with new “insights” about rape and alcohol:

First off, alcohol causes memory loss, not false memories. When drinkers try to fill in the lost time, they generally assume positive experiences–unlike, say, rape.

First off, everybody reacts to alcohol differently, especially people who have been traumatized. False memories are most likely a product of past victimization, not alcohol consumption. However, people with a history of alcohol abuse, usually have a history of emotional trauma. Any addiction specialist will tell you this. Alcoholism, itself, is a survivor struggling to cope with past trauma. That’s why their reactions to drinking are much more severe. Furthermore, there is a strong link between personality disorders and alcohol. 50% of people diagnosed with Borderline Personality Disorder are also diagnosed with alcoholism:

Why do people with BPD also often develop alcoholism? Most likely, several factors that account for the high rate of co-occurrence. First, BPD and alcoholism may share common genetic pathways. That is, some of the genes that put people at higher risk for BPD may also create higher risk for alcoholism. Also, there may be common environmental causes for alcoholism for BPD. For example, experiences of maltreatment in childhood (such as physical or sexual abuse, or emotional abuse or neglect), have been linked to both BPD and alcoholism.

But, there may also be other reasons for the link between alcoholism and BPD. Individuals with BPD may use alcohol to decrease the intense emotional experiences that are a hallmark of BPD. Because people with BPD have strong emotions frequently, casual use of alcohol may lead to abuse or dependence.

For those not familiar with BPD, possible borderline behavior includes false accusations, false memories, irrational outbursts, and frequently getting into trouble. These behaviors are well-documented. A borderline with a drinking problem is a prime target for sexual assault. Borderlines often have poor boundaries and promiscuous tendencies. They lack self-esteem and have bad decision-making skills. But they are also world-renowned illusionists. A borderline in denial will say anything to stay in denial. Including lying about rape. These are facts that Ms magazine will never publish.

Secondly, false memories are typically created after a traumatized person has sobered up. So alcohol is no longer a factor at this point. This is a period when the person is trying to make sense of what happened the night before. They are trying to rationalize a traumatic event.

My ex claims she was drugged by some guy at a college party. I have seen her drunk on many occasions, and she doesn’t need drugs. After a night of drinking, she has no control of her behavior and will have no recollection of her behavior the following day. If you were to look at photos of her after a night of drinking, you would see a blank stare on her face like a raccoon caught in the headlights. That blank stare means she is checked out for the night. There is nothing normal nor healthy about this kind of reaction to alcohol. Yet she continues to drink.

Drinking to the point of dissociation is often a sign of childhood trauma. Detaching from reality is a coping mechanism. Survivors dissociate when they are sober, but obviously drinking facilitates the process. It is this detachment from reality that makes them more vulnerable to re-victimization and self-victimization. One man asks if alcohol can induce dissociative identity disorder (alter ego):

When this person drinks {which is not very often}her personality completely changes, she starts speaking in an English accent, but has never been out of the United States, her parents are from California……this person becomes extremely sexually aggressive,and then in the morning acts like nothing has happened, I dated this person for about 3 months and noticed this about 7 or 8 times, she was abused as a child but i do not know all the details,when not drinking she is a very articulate, smart, charming person…a good job and successful, I have met many people since our breakup that known her for 25 years, and I am not the only person who has seen this..I brought this up with her and now we do not talk anymore,but I still am concerned….also she has said things in this state to me that she totally denies the next day{I love you,I need you,don’t ever leave me,will you always protect me?}..always in an English accent..strange !!!

This man could very well be describing my ex. It is not hard to imagine how someone like this could end up being victimized. Bad things can happen when people pass out. These people have a proclivity for irresponsible behavior even when they are sober. This is not exclusive to women. A man who passes out in an alleyway could get mugged and beaten to death. A drunk driver could crash into someone’s living room and not even know it. A woman could wake up with a stranger on top of her. Alcohol only unleashes the irresponsibility that was already there.

But it’s also not hard to imagine why someone like this would live in denial. Their embarrassing behavior is actually an unfortunate product of child abuse. It is a pattern of self-destruction and acting out that will continue throughout their life until they seek treatment.

It’s not uncommon for survivors to construct elaborate cover-up stories. Ever wonder why rape advocates are so obsessed with “slut shaming”? These people are very aware of the stigma that comes with sexual assault. Rather than own up to their embarrassing behavior, they would rather say they were victimized. False accusations are a way of shifting the blame/shame and eliciting sympathy. It’s a form of denial. Long ago they learned that playing the victim is a way to avoid persecution. Whether this is a conscious decision or not is up for debate.

It is important to acknowledge that many of these women who repeatedly find themselves in questionable circumstances have a history of sexual abuse and profound emotional issues. My ex had a history of cutting her wrists and suffered from depression BEFORE she was allegedly raped. These lifelong emotional issues make them more vulnerable to predators than the average person. Rape is not as random as most advocates would like you to believe. Predators often target people who have been victimized before.

When we talk about false accusations, we’re not necessarily talking about people who are lying. We are also talking about people who are unable to remember what happened. The subconscious mind has a way of covering up things that are too painful to accept.

A person who has a history of trauma and alcoholism has a very loose grip on reality… if any. Even when they are sober. I have seen it with my own eyes. I have witnessed my borderline ex shifting in and out of reality. Changing her story as many times as she has told it. It would be absurd to expect this person to be able to tell the truth. They, themselves, have no idea what the truth is.

Someone who has been repeatedly victimized their whole life, may automatically assume they were raped. People who were abused as children, grow accustomed to mistreatment. Their expectations often become self-fulfilling prophecies. This condition causes them to assume the worst. False memories can also be coaxed by an irresponsible therapist or overzealous advocates.

People who have been sexually traumatized have a problem with memory recall and perception as it pertains to intimate relations. That is a fact, not an opinion. But one that is ignored by so-called rape advocates.

A person who has suffered past trauma like this is also susceptible to all kinds of triggers. That’s why feminist blogs are littered with trigger alerts. For all we know, drunken sex might have triggered memories of past sexual abuse. Past abuse that might have been suppressed and then resurfaced when the survivor was triggered. I couldn’t even touch my ex’s wrists without triggering memories of cutting herself. The line that separates reality from painful memories is always a thin one. There’s a reason why their accusations are questionable. These reasons should not be silenced by angry rape survivors.

Also we should not make the mistake of assuming that every woman who cries “rape” is an innocent victim. The myth is that these survivors are helpless waifs. I have dated my fair share of troubled women (including women with a history of sexual assault) and I can tell you they were some of the most manipulative and hateful women I’ve ever been with. Sure, when you first meet them, they may seem innocent and sweet. They play the damsel-in-distress to lure you in. But that is part of the illusion.

I treated every one of those women like a princess. I treated them with care and concern they have never seen before. I treated them better than they treat themselves. And they all paid me back with betrayal and outrageous accusations. I state this not to elicit sympathy, but to show you that victims can be bad people too. Conventional wisdom would suggest that survivors of abuse would be more considerate of others, but lifelong abuse often hardens one’s heart.

I can say all these things, because I have intimate knowledge of such people. I have been betrayed by these so-called “victims” over and over again. But even people who know the truth are afraid to speak it for fear of someone accusing them of being a rape apologist or a misogynist. But this is more proof that false accusations are quite common amongst the survivor/victim crowd. For people who grew up in a hostile environment, it is their most potent weapon and they are not afraid to use it.

We are talking about women who have been abused their whole life. That means they have been conditioned to accept abuse as well as dole it out. We’re talking about women who have a score to settle with MANkind. They are looking for an excuse to unleash that rage upon a man, any man. Even a loved one. These are women who secretly hate men. They have no problem using and abusing them and then discarding them. And maybe tarnishing that man’s reputation in the process to justify their own inhumane behavior. If they are willing to do this to a man they supposedly loved, then what’s to stop them from ruining a man they used for sex?

In the absence of physical violence, these silent abusers inflict emotional violence upon unsuspecting men. They would have you believe that society favors men, but these are women who know how to elicit sympathy. They know how to play a damsel-in-distress. They know how to use the law to their advantage. They have been abusing the victim card their whole life. And I can testify that they are much better at manipulating people than you are.

So when any one of these women cries wolf, I am extremely suspicious. If you’ve been keeping up with the Tigerbeatdown drama here on Savory Dish, you will have witnessed some of these troubled souls throwing around false accusations without effort. You have witnessed Shady Doyle confusing harsh criticism with abuse. And witnessed her accusing her own followers of being abusers. This is a master manipulator at work.

Even if we locked up all the rapists and alleged rapists of the world, I guarantee you these troubled people would still find trouble to get into. Their personal history tells me so. I have seen it with my own eyes. According to my borderline ex, she has been molested, cut her wrists, been raped and been mugged. Even if all of these were legitimate claims, doesn’t that seem troubling? Is it a coincidence that all these horrible things happened to one person. No. It isn’t. There is a pattern of behavior here. There are signs of trouble that should not be ignored.

When rape is questionable (which is NOT often), BOTH parties (alleged victim and alleged rapist) usually have a history of questionable behavior. A history of chaos and unnecessary drama. That’s what makes it questionable.

But even when rape accusations are real, there is still a question of why men with personality disorders and drinking problems end up raping women with similar issues. Birds of a feather flock together. Predators and victims all belong to the same dysfunctional club. It is an exclusive lifetime membership that is passed on from one generation to another. But advocacy groups and publications like Ms. magazine will never reveal this truth. Why? I think you know the answer.

False accusations involving any crime are relatively few and far between. Ms. Hallett has suggested that this means false accusations are not a problem. If your brother or father (someone you loved) was accused of rape, you would probably consider it a problem. A serious problem with devastating effects. But why is Ms. Hallett trying to diminish the pain of others?

As Ms. Hallett has pointed out, the percentage of false accusations are relatively small. That is because the percentage of people who are capable of such allegations is also small. But the small percentage of people who are afflicted with personality disorders and alcoholism is still a number in the millions. That’s a significant number. Remember- it only takes one person to ruin the rest of your life.

While I believe the vast majority of rape cases are legitimate… why is it those that are questionable always seem to involve alcohol abuse and personality disorders? Is that a coincidence? And why is Ms Magazine so determined to suppress this information? I was under the impression that feminism stood for the empowerment of all women, but it seems lately they are in the business of defending women of dubious reputation. Is this journalism? Or is this a personal vendetta dressed up as social activism?

Visit the Ms blog and you will find angry survivors defending a woman’s right to engage in risky behavior. Is this activism? Or is this irresponsible women defending their own bad choices? Are they rushing to defend women they don’t even know? Or are they fighting a much more personal battle?

We can all agree that rape is a horrible crime. We can all agree that rapists are vile scum. We can all agree that rapists should be punished to the fullest extent of the law. And only if it is a clear-cut case of rape.

But what if the circumstances are questionable? Ms magazine would have us presume that all accusations of rape are true, all of the accused- guilty, and all the accusers- righteous. But I say we need to look at all allegations with a careful eye.

If you think Ms magazine can do a better job of raising awareness about rape, write to the senior editor mkort@msmagazine.com

4 Responses to “What Ms Magazine Doesn’t Want You to Know”

  1. savorydish said

    I use to consider Ms Magazine a respectable publication. But when they resort to sensationalism and disinformation, it makes me sad. What’s even more sad is the complete disregard for the pain and suffering caused to the victims of false accusations.

    The writers and editor of Ms work so hard to change the image of rape survivors. But they don’t realize this kind of writing just makes them look self-serving and out of touch. And not like the compassionate voice of feminism they had hoped to be.

    They try to strong arm other publications like the NY Times with petitions and other silly political activities in hopes of changing people’s attitudes about rape. But they don’t realize that change starts with them.

    Only when women with a history of personality disorders and alcoholism seek treatment will we see a decrease in rape incidents. Stop feeding the problem. Stop looking the other way. These are serious issues that need to be addressed. This is not about blaming survivors. It’s about preventing future tragedies by getting to the root of the problem.

  2. savorydish said

    So how do you sort the truth from the lies?

    Simple. A person’s history will tell you everything you want to know. If a person has a history of seeking attention… if they have history of playing the victim… if they have a history of lies and manipulations, then you have your answer.

    False accusations are just part of the story. Look at their life and you will see a trail of misery. Misery caused by them. Not some imaginary boogie man.

    • savorydish said

      Why would someone falsely accuse someone of rape?
      Because misery loves company.
      Why would they lie about rape?
      Because being a victim is better than being alone.

      A baby cries and the parent comes running to them with caring arms.
      This is a lesson we all learn. But for those who fear abandonment, attention is their lifeblood.
      These wounded souls thrive on the sympathy they get from others.
      That’s why they have all sorts of imaginary illnesses, imaginary foes and imaginary tragedies.
      They cry and the world comes running to their aid.

  3. savorydish said

    Angry survivors like to advertise their feelings of victimization. While most of them point to an alleged incident of rape as the cause for such feelings, our knowledge of BPD suggests that these feelings of victimization may have been present since birth. Someone with this condition is therefore predisposed to misinterpret innocuous events as examples of victimization. In some cases false memories may actually be false interpretations.

    In addition,this person may also be looking for a scapegoat. That is, in the presence of inexplicable feelings of victimization, they may subconsciously be looking for some event to validate their feelings. Thus implicating someone who just happen to be at the wrong place at the wrong time.

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