Travel, Food, and Slices of Life


A Woman’s Place

We are horrified to hear that women who are raped in Islamic cultures are often stoned to death by the community or “honor” killed by the men in their family because of their perceived role in causing the attack.  We get angry when we understand that girls are undergoing ritual removal of their clitoris because women are not supposed to have pleasurable sensations during sex. We looked at Muslim women wearing the burqa and feel it is ridiculous that they must be covered so much. burqa

It is easy to look at another culture and feel how unjust the treatment of women is.

Mom told my sisters and me never to sit on a boy’s lap. She never explained why, but as we got older and disobeyed her advice, we discovered the reason. There were lumps where none existed before. What an amazing power we had. Or so we thought.

I married at 22, fully believing it was for life. He said the words I was told I would hear if it was real love. He was gentle and seductive for a time.  Then things changed a bit, as marriage does. Or so I thought.

A friend from college came to visit and saw the way I was treated. He asked me why I accepted being treated so poorly. I denied it. All was well. Or so I thought.

I believed there was something wrong with me when we made love. I did not enjoy it, but I could act enthusiastically. It hurt. I told a friend if you could imagine sex without touching, that was what it was. Or so I thought.

Only recently have I realized that I was raped repeatedly during that marriage.  It was in discussion with a number of my friends that I heard similar stories. It was not my fault as I had thought. And it happens way more than we think.

We have heard statistics that there are rapes in the military and rapes on college campuses and the numbers are astonishing.  The deniers, for the most part, are men. It is much easier to believe the women’s behavior enticed and teased and the guys got carried away.  It is hard to believe that men let their hormones and strength overrule their common sense. These same guys would be the first to be angry if their mother, their sister, their wife was attacked and abused. These same guys are emotional and reactive, quick to anger, using force to prove their points.  These guys may be denying their own behavior at home.

Abuse is abuse. Rape is aggression, not sex. The fact that it penetrates a private zone is that much more pleasurable for the attacker, proving his strength. Not his prowess. Not his ability to be a compassionate partner. Not his skill at love making. But that does not matter. It’s only a slut.

Our culture here in the United States where men can attack women, can control women with their strength, can make decisions for women because of their superior financial position is very much as contentious as the visible means that the Islamic women are suppressed.

My last formal education in biology was over 40 years ago in high school. My last pregnancy was 20 years ago. But golly gee people! A zygote is the term used to describe what is formed when an egg is fertilized by a sperm. Typically that takes place in the fallopian tube. It takes up to a week before the zygote travels enough to attach to the uterus where is is then called a blastocyte. There are many reasons the zygote won’t attach.  But when it fails, there is still no beating heart, no little fingers, no eye formation.  There is no little human. There are only a bunch of cells, dividing dividing dividing and then failing to thrive because there is no additional nutrition.


The concept of birth control is to help a family decide the timing of their planned children. I think we all can agree that when there are fewer mouths to feed, family income can provide better.  We also know that in the current economy, that family income does not stretch as far as it used it. It is interesting that recent surveys here in the US indicate even the majority of Catholic families are using birth control.  Even more interesting is that a recent survey this spring indicate that 85% of people agree medical insurance should provide birth control.

I’ve seen lots of comments on Facebook regarding how men want their viagra to help a body function when it no longer can do it naturally. What’s good for the gander is good for the goose.  Equal rights.

But then again, we only thought we had equal rights.