Men’s survivor material, comment and zine proposal?


Men’s Survivor Resources

It took a lot of searching to find any writing at all on themes that could be directly useful for men who are survivors of adult sexual assault. So I though it necessary to publish the list here *Men’s Survivor Resources* hopefully so others won’t have to go the effort I went to or give up trying.

This could be the entirety of books published on the subject. Here I want to talk about the possibilities of zines, there are only 6 zines that I know of dealing with men who are survivors of sexual abuse. 2 exclusively, one of them mine. Any thoughts on the below would be much appreciated.

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Pamphlets

breakfcSurvivors Manchester Booklet

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Read me!Ask; from the mouths of wolves bellowing forth

A narrative of consent, loneliness, deconstructing child hood violence and abuse, redefining rape for a muggle culture, finding out what normalcy means to children, growing out of being shy and awkward, and empowering one’s self to reach past gushing wounds and continue resistance. (Author)

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consentsusConsen(t)sus? Exploring Contradictions, Practice, and Politics. Also, Gay Sex

This is a compilation zine edited by Eric Levitt of Gay 4 Pay press and Jonathan Vallely of Broken Pencil. It consists of writings, explorations and personal reflections on and about consent from people who identify/or partially identify as men who have sex with men. Lots of text and great for anyone looking for a beyond Consent 101 read.

Writings by: Eric Levitt, Jonathan Vallely, Andrew Morrison-Gurza, Eddie of Gross Process/Doom Clouds Zine, Shakir Rahim and more.

Published October 2014

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hoax 9HOAX #9 – FEMINISMS & VULNERABILITIES

essays include:

  • How vulnerability can combat misogyny within trans communities
  • Vulnerabilities and doors as a queer mixed woman
  • Coping with internalized misogyny, consciously staying away from men, and familial dynamics
  • Nuances of high school experiences
  • Letting go of hurtful narratives while embracing heartache and the process of “breaking down”
  • Views on queer identity interrogation, performance, and transparency as a punk zinester
  • Vulnerabilities of mental health perspectives and lack of intersectionality
  • Witnessing misguided white manarchist resistance to police and reflections on vulnerability of communities of color
  • Multi-generational healing work and vulnerabilities as a male-socialized survivor
  • Questioning the responsibility of self-agency after “checking out” during sex
  • Asking for help as a necessary self-publishing task
  • Experiences of racism and sexism in a hospital setting and the legitimacy of describing one’s pain
  • Trans women and solitary confinement
  • Boundary setting in the contexts of capitalism, physical and mental illness, and life crises
  • Inpatient hospital stays and changes in labels of one’s mental illness(es)
  • Loss of memory and personal history, critiquing queer/trans* growth narratives, and creating (non-)advice for non-normative teens and young adults
  • Vulnerability of discussing physical illness
  • Navigating queer attraction and desire with a history of violence
  • A feminist coming out monologue
  • Dealing with kink, trauma, and complexities of BDSM involvement
  • Interview Excerpt with Daniela Capistrano, Founder of the POC Zine Project
  • Examining the necessity of assertiveness for disabled women and asking for accommodations

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stalinTolerated Individuality

Laying my traumas on the table, how anarchism justified my desire for a nomadic existence and how I sought interdependence as a solution to a changing world. (Author)

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99Support

an anthology I put together about supporting abuse survivors. A lot of people have written to me and said that this helped them identify as survivors, and to find a way forward in their lives, find ways to change their patterns and find support and healing. This zine includes the consent questions that Andrea, Able and I came up with, and they are great way for people to start talking about consent, either with their partner(s) or with their friends.This zine is not just for survivors, but is also for people who are friends and partners with survivors, to help them understand. (Author)

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Call for Submissions – for a compilation zine written for self-identifying men who are survivors of sexual assault.

Looking for contributions from survivors, their comrades, family, friends and lovers.

abuse

Looking for personal experiences or ideas written in first person, to go into a zine by masculine identified people about unpicking societies conditioning and sexual abuse. All comments, collaborators welcome, email me at activistjourneys@gmail.com

I won’t edit your stories only copy and paste. I’d like 50% to be dedicated to unpicking abuse and learning good consent. But not necessary to include in every text if you feel your story stands alone as valuable experience.

Mock up draft of what the zine could look like with subject ideas I’d like to write about.  **here** – Download link of articles I’m interested in, not for publication, I don’t own texts.*

Example Table of Contents

1. The Prevalence

2. Protective measures you can take and Risk Factors

3. The Impact of rape and sexual assault on men
Triggers – Smells, Baby Talk, Phones,

4. Implicit humiliation felt relating to certain Sex acts
Penetration, oral – other men counting up sexual conquests, Tradition/Religion holding PIV up to the ultimate sacred. Kink – Dominant / Submissive desires, Bondage, Having eyes covered, misunderstand your kinks as you wanting to be demeaned, humiliated, tortured? Struggle with not being able to find an outlet for your sexuality, been let down by the prospect of getting to let go and felt pushed into not nice territory? Struggled to align your feminist identity with submissive desires?

5. Rhetoric around Abuse in the media – Public victim blaming
Jodi Arias, Shia LeBeouf, Lena Dunham, Cierra Ross, James Landrith, Mary Kay Letourneau and Debra Lafave

6. Societal Expectation
Compulsory Heterosexuality, Girl on Girl Competitive Hate, Men and Femininity, Men and women can’t be friends, Forced into sex to fit expectations; save time so can go to sleep, make the other person feel good about themselves, to fit a fantasy.
Body Image; growing objectification of men

7. Attitudes towards men who are rape survivors
Not Believed, Social standing / identity; ostracized, stigmatized.

8. The disclosure of rape
Disparity men/women how many victims of domestic violence acknowledge, report, seek services, support, shelter.

9. Survivor and disability, ethnicity, sexual orientation, gender
Negotiating attraction in a relationship with someone questioning their sexual/gender identity or your own?
Wrestling with race essentialism or disability stigmatisation.
Body Image, dieting, survivor guilt and panoptical victim.

10. The use of male rape in university, prisons, military, war
Torture different by sex, felt as being emasculated

11. Sexual feelings during abuse

12. It’s not your fault

13. Finding community
In defense of survivors who date strong people to protect them.
Being the harmless choice of an abuse survivor.

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I’ve found what I was looking for (almost)

Since writing this call out I’ve found great new resources, but nothing quite matching my idea for a new zine on the subject, which is good in a way because it leaves me something to get my teeth into.

ask first! consent patch

Survivors Manchester booklet

Survivors Manchester have released a booklet that deals well with giving examples of abuse suffered by men who have endured adult rape or child sexual abuse. But ultimately the examples are so short I wish the contributors had been given more room for free expression. Also, it seemed to me to focus on abuse that happened dramatically and violently to men. The focus on one dramatic aspect of abuse and rape, that it is real and does happen to men is self-limiting. It ultimately exchanges the myth that men can’t be raped, for the ‘stranger danger’ myth that rape only happens in dark alleyways.

Perhaps I’m simply feeling a certain self-censorship on the part of men not wanting to disclose about the parts they wanted in that relationship which is absolutely OK and shouldn’t take anything away from their identity as a victim or masculine. Part of what makes dating violence so confusing is that there is often love, hope and longing intertwined with the abuse. This has been understood in the feminist world for some time.

However, in mainstream male survivor advocacy it seems we are a long way away from a common understanding of this paradigm. I think it would be helpful to reach out to communities who have long been adept at breaking with strongly guiUK

cultural assumptions like the gender binary which allows them to be honest and upfront about telling their story of abuse and recovery.

I have also found a great booklet on domestic violence, but as I’m finding out a lot of UK research restrict themselves by only looking at this understandable phenomenon of compulsory heterosexual monogamy (UK studies on male survivors are relatively new compared to larger countries like the US). This can mean that they ignore all those relationships that don’t conform to this paradigm.

I’ve come back full circle to the teenage relationship abuse zine that helped me find the words to unpick my own first relationship trauma. This deals with young naïve kids unknowingly stumbling into their first relationships. It describes how they may unwittingly mimic the fucked up competitive hierarchical dynamics of ‘conventional’ relationships. . Inspired by this, I wish to create something the younger me could have read and related to when I was first stepping out into the world.

I think I have done that somewhat with my first zine however, this time I want to go much further. The bookshelves and internet are full of self-help manuals. However, I don’t want to read a 300 page book on one person’s reasons why their regime of mental focus and gymnastics is better than everyone else’s.

I want to read your stories of how surviving trauma shaped you as a person, coming to terms with new realties, doing what felt right to you at the time, and coming up with new solutions in the moment, those aha moments, and those gruelling stories of moving your whole life to the other side of the world or dashing across town with your possessions in a shopping trolley to your squatting life begun a new, building a support base around you that sometimes comes crashing to the ground, a kiss behind the barricade, a brick through a banks window for getting triggered, a dreamt of confrontation and a celebration of a heart still beating.

What follows is an essay from crimethink that felt like a breath of fresh air when I was younger. Now it’s simplistic moralizing erks me, mystifying and romanticising suffering, robbing survival of any context or reality. However, at the time I first read it, it appealed to my desire to label everything good and bad, it was an escape, all I could ever want and needed to experience. It justified my dream to throw it all to the wind.

Please send all submissions to activistjourneys@gmail.com
**Look here to see a proposed format of the future zine.**

 


On self-care:

“ I’d been trying every way I could to care for myself. Lying in bed after my hospitalization, in a dramatic decline that was frankly embarrassing, I tried to call a truce with my body. What do you need, I asked it, to get back to work? I’m ready to make a deal. The answer I received made me recoil, as though someone had placed a stranger’s bawling infant in my arms and ordered me to love and raise it as my own. “

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Fighting for our lives

We dropped out of school, got divorced, broke with our families and ourselves and everything we’d known.

We quit our jobs, violated our leases, threw all our furniture out on the sidewalk, and hit the road.

We sat on the swings of children’s playgrounds until our toes were frostbitten, admiring the moon- light on the dewy grass, writing poetry on the wind for each other.

We went to bed early and lay awake until well past dawn recounting all the awful things we’d done to others and they to us—and laughing, blessing and absolving each other and this crazy cosmos.

We stole into museums showing reruns of old Guy Debord films to write fight foul and faster, my friend, the old world is behind you on the backs of theater seats.

The scent of gasoline still fresh on our hands, we watched the new sun rise, and spoke in hushed voices about what we should do next, thrilling in the budding consciousness of our own limitless power.

We used stolen calling card numbers to talk our teenage lovers through phone sex from telephones in the lobbies of police stations.

We broke into the private pools and saunas of the rich to enjoy them as their owners never had.

We slipped into the offices where our browbeaten friends shuffled papers for petty despots, to draft anti-imperialist manifestos on their computers—or just sleep un- der their desks. They were shocked that morning they finally walked in on us, half-naked, brushing our teeth at the water cooler.

We lived through harrowing, exhilarating moments when we did things we had always thought impossible, spitting in the face of all our apprehensions to kiss unapproachable beauties, drop banners from the tops of national monuments, drop out of colleges . . . and then gritted our teeth, expecting the world to end—but it didn’t!

We stood or knelt in emptying concert halls, on rooftops under lightning storms, on the dead grass of graveyards, and swore with tears in our eyes never to go back again.

We sat at desks in high school detention rooms, against the worn brick of Greyhound bus stations, on disposable synthetic sheets in the emergency treatment wards of unsympathetic hospitals, on the hard benches of penitentiary dining halls, and swore the same thing through clenched teeth, but with no less tenderness.

We communicated with each other through initials carved into boarding school desks, designs spray-painted through stencils onto alley walls, holes kicked in corporate windows televised on the five o’clock news, letters posted with counterfeit stamps or carried across oceans in friends’ packs, secret instructions coded into anonymous emails, clandestine meetings in coffee shops, love poetry carved into the planks of prison bunks.

We sheltered illegal immigrants, political refugees, fugitives from justice, and adolescent runaways in our modest homes and beds, as they too sheltered us.
We improvised recipes to bake each other cookies, cakes, break- fasts in bed, weekly free meals in the park, great feasts celebrating our courage and kinship so we might taste their sweetness on our very tongues.

We entrusted each other with our hearts and appetites, together composing symphonies of caresses and pleasure, making love a verb in a language of exaltation.

We wreaked havoc upon their gender norms and ethnic stereotypes and cultural expectations, showing with our bodies and our relationships and our desires just how arbitrary their laws of nature were.

We wrote our own music and performed it for each other, so when we hummed to ourselves we could celebrate our companions’ creativity rather than repeat the radio’s dull drone.

In borrowed attic rooms, we tended ailing foreign lovers and struggled to write the lines that could ignite the fires dormant in the multitudes around us.

In the last moment before dawn, flashlights tight in our shaking hands, we dismantled power boxes on the houses of fascists who were to host rallies the following day.

We fought those fascists tooth, nail, and knife in the streets, when no one else would even confront them in print.

We planted gardens in the abandoned lots of ghettos, hitchhiked across continents in record time, tossed pies in the faces of kings and bankers.

We played saxophones together in the darkness of echoing caves in West Virginia.
In Paris, armed with cobblestones and parasols, we held the gendarmes at bay for nights on end, until we could almost taste the new world coming through the tear gas.

We fought our way through their lines to the opera house and took it over, and held discussions there twenty-four hours a day as to what that world could be.

In Chicago, we created an under- ground network to provide illegal abortions in safe conditions and a supportive atmosphere, when the religious fanatics would have preferred us to die in shame and tears down dark alleys.

In New York we held hands and massaged each other’s shoulders as our enemies closed in to arrest us.

In Quebec we tore up the high- way and pounded out primordial rhythms on the traffic signs with the fragments, and the sound was vaster and more beautiful than any song ever played in a concert hall.

In Santiago, we robbed banks to fund papers of transgressive poetry.

In Siberia, we plotted impossible escapes—and carried them out, circumnavigating the globe with forged papers and borrowed money to return to the arms of our friends.

In Montevideo, in the squatted township, we built huts from plywood and plastic sheeting, pirated electricity from nearby power lines, and conferred with our neighbors as to how we could contribute to our new community.

In San Diego, when they jailed us for speaking our minds, we invited our friends and filled their prisons until they had to change their policy.

In Oregon, we climbed trees, and lived in them for months to protect the forests we had hiked and camped in as children.

In Mexico, when we met hopping freight trains, we traded stories about working with the Zapatistas in Chiapas, about floods witnessed from boxcars passing through Texas, about our grand- parents who fought in the Mexican revolution.

We fought in that revolution, and the Spanish civil war, and the French resistance, and even the Russian revolution—though not for the Bolsheviks or the Czar.

Sleepless and weather-beaten, we crossed the Ukraine on horseback to deliver news of the conflicts that offered us another chance to fight for our freedom.

Tense but untrembling, we smuggled posters, books, firearms, fugitives, ourselves across borders from Canada to Pakistan.

We lied with clean consciences to homicide detectives in Reno, to military police in Santos, to angry grandparents in Oslo.

We told the truth to each other, even truths no one had ever dared tell before.
When we couldn’t overthrow governments, we raised new generations who would taste the sweet adrenaline of barricades and wheatpaste, who would carry on our quixotic quest when we fell or fled before the ruthless onslaught of the servile and craven.

When we could overthrow governments, we did.

We stood, one after the other, decade after decade, century after century, behind the witness stand, and shouted so the deafest self-satisfied upright citizen at the back of the courtroom could hear it:“…and if I could do it all over again, I would!”

As the sun rose after winter parties in unheated squats, we gathered up great sacks of broken glass and washed stacks of dishes in freezing water, while our critics, sequestered in penthouses with maid service, demanded to know who would take out the garbage in our so-called utopia.

When the good intentions of liberals and reformists broke down in bureaucracy, we collected food from the trash to feed the hungry, broke into condemned buildings and transformed them into palaces fit for pauper kings and bandit queens, held the sick and dying tight in our loving arms.

We fell in love in the wreckage, shouted out songs in the uproar, danced joyfully in
the heaviest shackles they could forge; we smuggled our stories through the gauntlets of silence, starvation, and subjugation, to bring them back to life again and again as bombs and beating hearts; we built castles in the sky from the ruins of hell on earth.

Accepting no constraints from without, we countenanced none within ourselves, either, and found that the world opened before us like the petals of a rose.

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