#ICanSayNo to sexual abuse
If someone is sexual with another person in any way and the other person has not given consent or feels pressured or uncomfortable then this is sexual abuse!
If you observe a situation like in this video would you intervene and call your friend out?
The Normalization of 'male' power
Specifically in heterosexual relationships so-called male power and agression towards women is normalized and even often encouraged as acting ‘as a man’.
Aggression is seen as part of being a man.
Heterosexual violence is often seen as something common, as is women’s resistance to it. In this women’s sexuality is often not seen as their own, but as a matter in which men can meddle.
We learn those social scripts through basic cultural beliefs about gender and sex, such as “men are incapable of controlling sexual desire” or the link of “romance and aggression,” as depicted, for example, in most Hollywood romance films and series. This makes the behavior of sexual harassment and abuse to be considered as “normal” or as a way to “flirt”.
This normalized behaviour positions women to respond to harassment with a barrage of maneuvers such as avoidance and deflection of attention to keep themselves sheltered from this normalized abusive male behavior.
However, we all experience at the same time that women seem to desire this male behaviour as social scripts dictate us also that as women we have to be ‘desired’.
This is a horrific cycle of abuse we can only stop when both men and women become aware of how we are played by those ideals and beliefs.
In this scene it is the friend who acts to stop this abusive behavior, setting an example that it is the responsibility of men not to abuse.