Life, Love, and Dirty Diapers

Changing Attitudes to Change Culture on Rape

on August 4, 2011

This story is a bit old, but I have been wanting to cover it for awhile. So here’s my take on this story.

Rape is a horrible problem that happens worldwide. It is even worse in conflict situations, where is is used to shame the women and their men. In some cultures, a woman can be killed for being raped. Even if she’s allowed to live, she’s usually considered pretty undesirable.

Syria is one of those countries. And with the recent conflict, women have been raped.

After hearing about it, some men decided to step forward and offer to marry them. So far as I can tell, they’ve never met them. They’ve never seen them. They don’t know who it is they’re going to marry. But they’re doing it because they don’t agree with how these women have been used.

And that – is a powerful thing. It sends a message, both to these woman and to these rapists. To the women it says, someone wants you. You are desired. You don’t have to live the rest of your life in shame. To the rapists it says, you can’t take them from us. You can’t make them not count.

And that – is how cultures get changed. When places where the long standing history is that rape brings immense shame has men who say, no. Because really, cultures of violence against women, can only get so far by educating the women. The men are the one who need to be educated, who need to stand up and say this is not okay, because usually the men are the one perpetuating these crimes. And these men are doing that. And when the men and the women in a culture stand up and say this is not okay, it is the first step to ending it.

Enjoy the read: Syrian Men Promise to Marry Women Who Were Raped

2 responses to “Changing Attitudes to Change Culture on Rape

  1. Thank you for sharing this story. It is very important to the survival of a rape victim to know that they still matter, they still count, they are still worthy of love and that someone wants them and can love them. I very much applaud these men for taking this stance. I hope that they are very good to these women and treat them gently with love and great care.

    Lucky Star

    • Melissa says:

      You are welcome. I think that letting women know these things is very important as well. I hope that they are very good to these women as well. I have a suspicion that they will be, on the very basis alone of them challenging what their culture tells them these women should be and seeing these women as they are: beautiful, worthy of love, and wanted. Thank you for stoping by – I visited your blog and I want to say I think you are very brave for having the courage to share your story. I was reading and I know you don’t think you are brave, just no longer afraid, but I think being no longer afraid is being brave.

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