“It was horrible,” said Ben Carr, who spoke to Clunkline on condition of anonymity. “I asked a girl for sex and she turned me down. I wanted it, she didn’t, and she just forced her decision on me!” Carr broke down into tears, expecting us to put our arm around him and comfort him with a shoulder, but instead we backed slowly out of the room.
Another non-victim, Wally Norwich, spoke to us off the record. “Don’t repeat this, or anything, but I’ve been un-raped too. I don’t tell anybody because I’m worried they won’t believe me. And the shame that’s associated with it… it’s just too much. So keep it quiet, okay? I trust you.”
Men like Carr and Norwich fit into a larger pattern of a pandemic problem in our society, where women can unilaterally avoid sex even if the other party wants it really, really bad. Legislation to combat un-rape is far behind. This fact has only fueled mens’ constant allegations of sexism inherent in a system built to protect the wishes of women, but (allegedly) not those of men. “If they don’t want something, we can’t give them it; but if we want something and they don’t, that’s perfectly fine? That’s the most sexist thing I’ve ever heard of!” vented Norwich. “But don’t tell anyone I said that.”
Angela DeLaurentis, an expert on un-rape, provided us with starkly contrasting views. “Folk wisdom has it that almost every man has been un-raped at some point in his or her life, but in fact the figure should not be overstated: it is probably closer to one in four men. Shocking, isn’t it? That statistic is just shocking in how low it really is. For instance, nobody I know has actually been un-raped. And if they were, I bet they just weren’t asking for it.”