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Submitted on
May 24, 2013
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Secret. 13351 by DeviantArtSecret Secret. 13351 by DeviantArtSecret
This Secret is a response to Secret 13013 [link]

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Submitted by - DAS
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JapanYoshi Featured By Owner May 25, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Get the fuck off :icondeviantartplz:
this is depressing ... :(
tigrin Featured By Owner May 25, 2013  Professional Filmographer
This is a beautiful sentiment and it's not wrong. But it's a little heavy handed to lean on an abuse survivor to report. Even if you're a survivor yourself, you don't know what her circumstances are or what she's going through. It is very, very difficult to get someone convicted in court of sexual assault... even with evidence... and the process is deliberately traumatic for the victim. Even telling a friend or family member can backfire if they don't believe what happened.

Would the world be a better place if every victim immediately reported? If she told absolutely everyone? Probably. Is it fair to expect that? Is it fair to place the burden on a victim for the future victims of a perp? I don't think so. The only responsible person is the perp for his own actions. I think it's fine to encourage survivors to share their experiences and not be silent about their experiences. But shaming them for not reporting is another story.

Sorry, this just caught me at a bad moment.
Secret-Teller Featured By Owner May 27, 2013
You may be right. I hadn't intended to shame anyone, but I can see how it could be taken that way. In fact, rereading, I think in some ways I phrased this secret pretty badly. I wrote and sent it quickly, before I could lose my nerve, and it could have used a little more thought.

I don't think that ST 13013 should feel guilty about anything their abuser does regardless of whether they tell anyone. What I meant to say was that in my case, I do feel a little responsible, however nonsensical that is, and that if they're anything like me, they might end up feeling that way some day too.

Aside from that, based on the fact that they posted this secret, I think ST 13013 is dying to tell—maybe not to officially report it and go through the legal mess, which IS horribly arranged, but at least to tell their family so that they can avoid this man and stop rubbing salt in the ST's wounds.

It's hard to tell when you don't know how it'll be received. I know it's hard; I did it too. It's especially hard to tell people who might not want to believe you. But in my experience, it's worth it.

So I hope ST 13013 also reads this comment. I meant to give encouragement, not shame. I'm sorry if it came across that way.
tigrin Featured By Owner May 27, 2013  Professional Filmographer
I may have taken it a bit personally as I'm in a similar situation to ST 13013, except it's been about seven years for me. It's a long time to keep a secret. But it's still better to me than running the risk of my family rejecting me. I already lost a bunch of friends over it because they refused to believe me.

I think everyone who's been hurt wants to tell. It's just that fear gets in the way. I wish things could change so that victims weren't blamed and there'd be no reason to be afraid.
Felinespirit Featured By Owner May 25, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
I agree, but could you explain what you mean by "deliberately traumatic"?
tigrin Featured By Owner May 25, 2013  Professional Filmographer
Sure. Typically these sort of cases force the victim to go on the stand to testify about their experience to a court. They will have to relive their trauma again in detail in front of a group of judging strangers. Worse than that, they are open to cross-examination, and the defense will usually do whatever they can to poke holes in the story or cast reasonable doubt. This may include spinning the story to make it sound like the victim's fault, or otherwise defame her character. I don't think I need to explain how deeply traumatic this is for a survivor. Then there is always the chance that the defense is found not guilty, since these sort of cases are often "he said, she said", and the law skews towards protecting the accused. In the case of the girl this secret is aimed at, you can bet the defense will play up on her doubts and fears and produce plenty of character witnesses to make the case that he's a great guy who is not capable of such an act. Of course this is not true, but the defense will do whatever to defend their client, and sexual assault is very hard to prove.

I also know of a number of people who have gone through the traumatic process of reliving the assault and being questioned by police only to be told their case will never go to trial. Not to mention the problem of the rape kit backlog in the US, which ties up crucial evidence for years. [link]

Until culture and the law changes to stop protecting the perpetrator (and in particular I can't see this happening in the US since "innocent until proven guilty" is the pride of this country), I can't support ever pressuring a victim to report. It takes an absolutely incredible amount of strength on the part of the survivor.

Sorry to word vomit at you but I hope this answers your question. :)
Felinespirit Featured By Owner Jul 1, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
No, it's cool, thanks a lot for explaining.
(sorry for the late reply btw)
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