A week late and completely unlinked to the Good Men Project’s series on sexual violence and rape, GMP posted an article written by Marcus Williams. Marcus recounts his abuse and the impact it had on his ability to initiate sexual encounters or even ask a girl out. From his article:
If you’re expecting to hear how getting molested transformed me from a “good” 13-yr old into a rebellious, substance-abusing juvenile delinquent, you’re out of luck. Outwardly, I stayed pretty much the same kid: good grades, rule follower, got along fine with my parents, etc. The main difference in behavior was one that was easily attributed, even by me, to teenage shyness and awkwardness: my social circle shrank to almost nothing, and I was painfully shy when it came to dating. It would be a long time before I realized that a lot of my social awkwardness probably had something to do with being molested. Making that connection didn’t make anything easier, but it at least made sense.
Getting molested did not stunt my sex drive at all. Between the usual urges that accompany puberty and being a bookworm who read a lot about sex even before the Internet made it easy, I had no shortage of sexual desire. What it did stunt was my willingness and ability to make a move. Deep down, I was so afraid of violating a girl’s space by making an unwanted advance, that I refrained from making moves even at times when any “normal” guy would be seeing nothing but green light.
The more sexual or physical the move, the harder it was to make, but the really insidious thing about this fear was that it was inhibiting even at the point where potential sex gets started, like flirting or asking a girl on a date. I was not incapable of interacting with girls, but I’d always be so “nice” and asexual that I was one of those guys who ended up with plenty of platonic girl friends who infuriatingly told me time and again how lucky some girl would be to have me.
It is definitely worth a read, and most unfortunate that it was not included in GMP’s series about sexual violence.