Once again a book with a dark romance theme is on sale and clogging up my Facebook feed. Five stars the announcement screams as it tells me to not miss out on this amazing, awesome, panty-melting read. Hmmm....it stops me because just a few days before the blogger had shared a essay/article about nonconsent that listed all these horrible, painful, tear-inducing instances of rape and sexual assault. Even though I've been writing for fun since I was eight years old and to publish for the last five years I still consider myself a reader first. As a reader I have to tell you the books of dark romance where a woman is kidnapped-which actually happens every single day, sold-again every single day in the United States, forced to submit to sex whether she is kicking or screaming or lies there praying for it to be over-fucking again every single day in every state in America it makes my stomach revolt and my skin crawl to know people are selling these 'fantasies' to other women and making money off something another women is suffering from.
I have tried, I have really fucking tried to keep my mouth shut in all of this. I tell myself it's just a story, but then I remember the meme about 50 Shades of Gray where it says: 50 Shades of Grey is romantic only because the guy is a billionaire If he was living in a trailer it would be a criminal minds episode.
The problem with the meme is that it's clear the person didn't read the book in it's entirety and 'get' that the BDSM theme is the issue, she told him, I want to know about this I want to try it. Then she pulls a move of why did you do this to me. At no time as it was happening did she say stop, don't.
I have absolutely no doubt the meme was created by a guy. I also have no doubt there are men like him who think there are women out there who are on the downlow hoping some guy pushes their boundaries and it sweeps them off their feet.
Women have their fantasies guys have theirs.
In all my attempts to keep my mouth shut I tell myself it's just a book, an escape from the mundane everyday. Just because I read books on serial killers doesn't mean I want a serial killer running loose, it doesn't mean it's glorifying serial killers. But doesn't it though? Hasn't the villain become the hero today, Death Wish, Dexter, anyone? Oh, but they have their reasons, it's just entertainment. So you're entertained by a woman held and made to be fucked against her will until she finds herself in love with this disturbed individual? Because you know she wasn't happy in her old life anyway and this guy, deep down isn't psychotic (the way raping someone would indicate) he only did it because he wasn't loved in the past but she loves him now so she fixed him.
This is a woman's fantasy, guys take note.
Here's the thing, you want to believe it's entertainment, just a fantasy for a late night read to work out the stress and the vibrator and get off and then the next day it's forgotten. But it's not, men know this is being read, they read the descriptions they read the themes, maybe they'll read the sample. Huh, so women are into this shit? I want to say for 9 out of 10 it's nothing but I think the number is probably lower more like 7 out of 10 guys they shrug and move on but the others they take note. They take note and they're the guys who think it's no big deal to send a picture of their dick and fantasize the woman will go 'omg, this dick I must have it immediately.' Not gross you creepy fucker.
They are the guys who think it's okay to grope a woman in the subway or on the bus because it's a compliment to be wanted, for someone to want to cop a feel, to be attractive enough for the guy to take the chance. For a guy to force his hand up a woman's skirt or dress because he'll find out she's really wet because she really wants it but she doesn't want him to think she's a slut. Deep down women want this, because he's seen it, he's seen the kidnapped forced against her will book at number one on Amazon. I'm going to be the guy of her fantasy, I'm going to be the one she wishes wouldn't take no for an answer because he wanted her so much, because she doesn't mean no she means work harder to show me how much you want me. I'm going to start fucking her while she's asleep and as she wakes up she'll realize she wanted this, or this is the fantasy she had I'm going to make it come true and she'll thank me for it.
You have your fantasy, guys have theirs.
Do I really think this will change anything for real? No, I'm not delusional enough to think there are enough people reading my blog to make an impact. Do I want people to stop reading and writing dark romance where a woman is held against her will and raped and somehow falls in love with her rapist and her love somehow transforms him not from a sick, twisted individual but a hot, sexy alpha male who loves her so much so it makes it all right? Yeah, I do (I just deleted this four times before leaving this in.) We are judged by the things we do, not by what we say. If you're reading a story of rape and abuse of a woman by a man while your daughter plays on the monkey bars and she comes running back and asks you what you're reading I'm sure you'll lie, that's a given. But when she's old enough to know, really know you read a story about a young women being fucked while she's tied to a bed unable to even kick or scream will you really be able to shrug it off as just a fantasy, something moms do to break up the mundane, the every day? Or how about if your son finds your book and reads them?
You have your fantasy, boys form theirs. No guy wakes up one day thinking I need to force myself on a woman and that's what she wants. The idea is formed from the media, from books, from movies, from the world around him.
I know these will never go away, I don't expect them to. But I know I hope one day they won't be clogging my Facebook feed or on the best seller list. Because I just don't find anything romantic about kidnapping and raping a woman.