A survivor shares how we can have better conversations around rape

Sohaila was interviewed by Hello Giggles, a blog for independent women.

HG: ‘You also talk about the intricacies of “yes means yes and no means no.” Can you explain what people get wrong about that, and why it’s so complicated?’

SA: ‘I think this has a lot to do with gender. Women are taught to please and be polite. Sometimes we say yes to the most awful things just to keep the peace. And sometimes we say no because we don’t believe we deserve pleasure. In a world where we are taught sex is for men to enjoy and women to endure, it’s no wonder everyone gets baffled by each other’s signals. This is not an excuse for rapists—it’s simply an acknowledgement that language is complicated, and that a “yes” under duress (not knowing your rights; worrying about your job; thinking it’s your fault for being in this situation, etc.) isn’t the same as a “yes” given freely.’

Read the interview in full over on their website now.