Beware of the Wolf in Sheep’s Clothing
Why do all women know a woman who has been assaulted, but not one man knows a guilty man?
My ex sure was a handsome man. Very charming. Fun to hang around with at the bar. A respectable man with a great job. He was generally liked by everyone he met. When our doors shut to the outside world however, his curtain would fall and someone else would reappear from behind the drapes. Someone that would beat me. Someone that really hurt me physically & emotionally. Of course when I finally built up the courage to leave him, I didn’t go around telling the world who he really is. I adored his mother. I couldn’t do this to her, it would cause too much pain. So I licked my wounds by myself and instead of telling the truth I hid it. I longed for peace and quiet and with that in mind I removed myself in order to forget. I never told the authorities, only confided in my best friend and moved on by moving house, even getting new jobs and leaving the shared friend circle behind. The last thing I wanted was for memories to prolong which I longed for to disappear. So, I hit the flight and retreat button - fleeing the reminders of abuse. I gave myself time to heal and to focus my attention on what really mattered, my child and our financial as well as psychological wellbeing. I know to this day his mates & family speak highly of him, even though some did learn of his violence against women. I know to this day they would vouch for him and declare him a good man.
I met another man. A man who proclaims himself a feminist. Who, as a father of girls, insists he couldn’t hurt women. Someone who is online avidly supporting Women’s Aid and other charitable establishments for women who have suffered domestic abuse or sexual harassment. That man raped me. Yet again, bar my closest friends, no one knows the truth about him. In fact he turned the tables, manipulated the situation and in his online world he escaped an abusive relationship. People believe him. Strangers support him. I know the truth but others may vouch for him and declare him a good man.
In my early twenties I met a psychology student. He was all about nurturing one’s mental wellbeing. On occasion however he let his fists do the talking on my body. No doubt his patients trust him and would vouch for him and declare him a good man.
Of course you have heard about a girl’s night out at this stage. It isn’t unusual to experience harassment. There’s always one who thinks for it to be ok to just grab a woman’s butt as they pass, or forcefully insist on a kiss simply because you gave them time for a chat. Surely some of you men know at least of one who has engaged in this behaviour?
I and my experiences as a whole might not be the majority but I am certainly not a rarity, so how come no man knows another who has maltreated a woman? I do wonder about that and sometimes I feel there’s a bro-code upstaging reality and virtue.