Created By: JustinCognito on August 23, 2013 Last Edited By: JustinCognito on August 23, 2013

Rape Causes Promiscuity

Need to

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So, your script needs someone who will bang a lot of people. Given the prominence of the Male Gaze, odds are it's gonna be a girl who does a lot of dudes. But if you just have the girl who has no character beyond banging everyone in sight, then you might get accused of sexism. So, you have to come up with why this character is so sexually active.

Well, what if she was raped? There we go! Obviously somebody did something bad to her, and it flipped a switch in her mind. Now you've got some psychological depth (even if you don't actually explore the issue in any well-rounded way), and your female character has an "excuse" for all her sex scenes. Or it could be a male character. We're not judging you... even if we really want to.

Oddly, this troper can't recall many examples of this trope in material that's been "picked up"; he's seen it in a lot of formative works, so there's gotta be some foundation in "published" works that leads to the idea. The closest he can recall is how, on Loveline, Dr. Drew has a tendency to ask promiscuous/kinky girls if they were victims of sexual abuse.
Community Feedback Replies: 3
  • August 23, 2013
    Ugh, Motion To Discard. If there's something we certainly don't need is more rape tropes. It's not necessary, and we've had enough problems with the ones we already have.
  • August 23, 2013
    The reason you may not remember any is this is a Dead Horse Trope (except in some misogynist fanfics) and good riddance. Nowadays it would be presented as Insane Troll Logic to show the character is in a Crapsack World that considers rape the woman's fault.

    Might be worth noting that in general the opposite is true -- rape tends to make the victim less enthusiastic about sex, not more.

    For the Loveline example, systematic sexual abuse is a kind of a whole different ball game, it can cause serious personality disorders and behavior changes. So asking that isn't necessarily sexist/misogynistic as part of a comprehensive psychological analysis.
  • August 23, 2013
    ^ In re systematic sexual abuse : I believe you have something there. I seem to recall a book by Wendy Maltz (who is a therapist in this area) describing how promiscuity is one reaction to such abuse. Thus, Dr. Drew's question makes sense.

    That said, I cannot think of any examples in fiction (and I'd never heard of Loveline before now). I wonder if this is too much of a third rail to be used much as a trope.