One thing we do have to move beyond is this provincial idea that sexism and harassment are just a consequence of a few jerks within a new movement: it’s not. It’s widespread. I think atheist culture is actually better than the norm, but the outside world acts as a giant reservoir and buffer for the creeps to flourish…and it allows them to be legitimately surprised when anyone stands up to them. They get away with it everywhere else, so gosh, atheists must all be prudes and wilting lilies.
So once again, we get another tale of violated boundaries, this time from the gamers. I’ve put it below the fold in case it’s triggering, but one thing I found notable about it is how the woman involved is wracked with guilt and shame afterwards, and actually experiences a lot of doubt about her part in the incident. She is totally blameless. (That does not stop a few of the commenters for blaming her anyway, of course.)
This went on for a while, but maybe I was too drunk or maybe I still try to hard to be "one of the guys" to realize it was quickly going into creeper (haha, get it? get it? Minecraft party?) territory.
So when he started talking about boobs I didn’t really care. When he started showing me pictures of boobs of girls at the party that he had taken I thought "okay that’s weird whatever maybe he asked beforehand." At some point he raised a concern about being Asian and women not wanting him cause of some stereotypical view of penis size, and I was like "most women will agree size doesn’t matter" and went back to my phone.
Then he grabbed my free wrist and put it on his crotch and asked "Is this big enough?"
That would have been bad enough, but he had also pulled his dick out through the zipper of his pants. I had no idea what to do but say "You can’t do that!" and NOPE’D the fuck on out of there to find my friends. There’s a tweet from right around when this happened that says "I NEED AN ADULT AGAIN."
I mentioned it to my group right after it happened, but it didn’t really sink in to them, or me, for a while. I tried to dance and drink it off during the last 30 minutes of the party, but eventually just sat down as the situation began to replay in my head and as soon as the party ended I bolted for the door to find a cab, trying to hold tears back. Thoughts of "Is this how people who don’t know me in the industry see me? Did he not even HEAR the amount of times I mentioned my boyfriend? Did he think I was just some whore?" and of course all the guilty thoughts of "Is this my fault for not leaving the conversation sooner/dressing like this/etc." Being drunk also wasn’t helping me be any less upset. My friends tried to find him, and tried to tell security (and got a "Okay? What do you expect me to do?" response). I freaked out for a bit, but thank god I have amazing friends who were there to smother me in hugs and "I’ll break his dick off" threats. And I’m thankful that if something that shitty had to have happened, that it happened that close to the end of the party.
There is no excuse for what that guy did. That the woman tuned out his escalating perviness is a consequence of the incessant sexist noise — and we already know what happens to a woman who turns to the guy at the onset of his intrusion and says “don’t do that.” She can’t win.