Revaluate your relationship, or at the very least, ask them to hold you accountable for what you say.Do you tend to use this language when you’re angry or hurt? Do you notice yourself leaving comments online filled with this language? The point is to get out of old habits and into new ones.
We tell people to “go f*ck themselves” when we’re angry. We “force ourselves” to do a myriad of tasks, “hit on someone” when we flirt, and tell (mostly) women to “suck it” when their power is threatening to us. You’ve probably also noticed that that’s a lot of sexual violence.
This language might, on the surface, seem unimportant or coincidental, but as any linguist (or feminist) knows, our language shapes the way we see our world.
When we consider the fact that 1-in-3 women and 1-in-6 men will be victims of sexual violence, it’s not surprising that it is a massive focal point in our speech.
It’s not surprising that threatening sexual assault is the primary way that we engage in verbal warfare.
This language is so normalized, it’s probably part of your vocabulary, too.
In fact, not using sexual violent language is almost impossible because of how ingrained it has become.
We don’t even realize what we are actually saying because we don’t question it.
If you’re reading this article, it’s likely that you want to end rape culture and sexual violence.
You probably don’t want to be normalizing rape through your language.
So how can every one of us work to stop using language derived from sexual violation?
This might seem like a pretty obvious answer, but really, we have to stop using it.