Time to get my umbrella out, its raining A**HOLES!
2 incidents of being molested in one week. One had to do with sex work. One had nothing to do with sex work.
2 guys I was “talking to”, had sex or talked about having sex with turned unneccesarily abusive for no reason in the same week. You get ONE RED FLAG nowadays. That’s it. I cut them out like potential cancers. I will NOT stand to be abused again by anyone I date, if I can help it at all. I’m so quick on the EJECT button these days, since my last relationship was with a mentally ill abuser who emotionally, verbally and financially caused me stress and strife I think I am mostly healed from from 6 months later.
There are patterns in everything. The verbal attack/insult which can both ambiguous and direct and the apology or the invitation to be friendly again. I rejected both of these guys as soon as I got wind of what I saw as the potential beginning to a pattern of abuse that I am too familiar with. The video clip only talks about the martial arts instructor and my last shift at work, but the dating violence incidents occured immediately after those.
The days that follow are filled with the normal PTSD symptoms: depression/anxiety and self destructive tendencies (drinking beer alone and calling a very neglectful ex-lover). The very next day ALL I wanted to do was find a gym with a heavy bag that I could punch and kick for an hour or two. I was even willing to pay the day fee to use the facilities at any of the local downtown LA gyms. I faked an interest in membership and was able to get a free day pass at Golds.
One guy whom I met on an internet dating website but was now talking to as a friend who would collaborate on a filmmaking project with texts me after he sees this video, saying that “he saw my rant on youtube and wanted to see how I was” which I saw as him reaching out to me to offer support. He tells me that I should meditate and do Buddhist chants instead of punch and kick bags. When I don’t immediately agree with him about what I needed and wanted for my healing at that time, he started to get irritated and antagonistic with his questioning about my definition of God and spirit, making assumptions about what my beliefs were before I could say them..
When I did BEGIN to define them, all I heard him respond with was “I hate to rain on your parade, sweetheart but you’re NOT special.”
I said, “Somehow, the way you arrogantly say things to me, just makes me want to hang up on you.”
“then hang up on me then.” he said.
and I did. CLICK. Goodbye forever. I just recently did this with another guy who thought he could raise his voice at me on the phone for longer than 60 seconds, after I told him to calm down and stop shouting at me. CLICK.
The last time I saw him, we had a misunderstanding about something, I thought that he called me a “bottomfeeder” in a sentence, but I wasn’t sure. I do remember making an angry face at his words without making it a big deal at the time. (Do you know those fish, the bottom feeders? That’s what you are doing.”) I let that one slide but it made me not want to hang out with him as a friend (his birthday was the next day, and he sort of invited me) and question the potential of any artistic collaboration staying non toxic. Because of my history of relationship violence, I am super sensitive to all abuse, subliminal and direct dissing is ALL relevant and never ignored.
Monday came too soon and on this day I usually have two counseling sessions with two different women. One is a woman of color relationship violence intern and another is an older white queer MFT with more years of clinicial experience. It felt great to talk and talk and process this some more. I have moved from being unsure about being molested by said instructor and confirming based on talking to a few others and listening to my bodies’ reaction to the violation that indeed I was violated.
I am looking for the appropriate way to deal with the incident. I don’t feel like quitting martial arts at that school or even telling this instructor’s supervisor. I don’t want him to stop teaching, I just want him to fix the problem. I want to make it safer for ME and others who take classes from him. I believe that this can be possible. Perhaps this is too idealistic. I know that I don’t feel comfortable going to another one of his classes until this gets resolved. I asked one other female fighter her opinion and she supported me. I asked another female and even called her twice with no response. I decided that I didn’t need to confirm that he had done this to other students in order to feel that this was wrong for ME.
I am leaning towards a mediated conversation with a female instructor at the school. I tried the one on one, let’s not make it a big deal method the first time this instructor did something questionable, but the second time I decided I would involve a third party. I decided I would contact the female instructor of the upcoming sexual asasault defense workshop for her opinion or help with a mediation. The idea behind this mediation comes from the anti-prison movements model of community policing and intervention. The problem with this is that the school is run by the Deputy District Attorney of LA and is the martial arts style that trains the police and law enforcement. The martial arts style comes from the brutal Israeli army tactics used to defeat the Palestinian rebels. It is the opposite of the community intervention model. Punish and execute. Ostracize. Imprison.
My name is Mariko, and I’ve been a KM student for over a year now. We may have met before, i’m not sure. On Thursday, an instructor was demonstrating ground fighting moves on me and instructing me on how to create a hold of someones body while they are on their back. He grabbed both of my buttcheeks to get a grip and buryed his head in my stomach. He told me this was normal and told me to try it on him as well. A woman’s vagina is between her butt so grabbing them will create a spreading motion which is incredibly jarring if the person touching you there is not someone you know intimately. His fingers grazed my genitals about 3 times during repeated examples. I never resisted or questioned his authority because I trusted that he was the one with the knowlege and I was there to learn whatever he had to teach me, as usual goes on his classes that I’ve grown and become strong in over the 1.5 years.
When I looked noticeably uncomfortable with what he was doing, he asked about it and I told him explicitly that “these moves were very confrontational, I am a rape survivor.” He apologized at the time, but he didn’t ease up with his examples, in fact I feel as if he intensified his resistance, at one point grabbing my pants and simulating pulling them down. At another point during the 2 hours that I was being his example (2 classes in a row) he asked if he could grab me by my crotch. He explained that in grappling the body is just like a lump of clay to be thrown around without regard to exactly what body part we are grabbing. I totally believed every word he said. He said that guys don’t like it either but they do it to each other all the time. We were talking during the entire run of examples and he was constantly checking in with me. I told him I was ok, him grabbing me by the crotch was ok, I consented, him grabbing my butt, I consented. I grabbed him by the buttcheeks and repeated the same move he did on me. This is ALL OCCURING IN FRONT OF 2 DIFFERENT CLASSES full of students so it looks like nothing funny is going on. Every violation was so slick and subtle that I was never sure enough to resist, but sure enough to question it while it was occuring, but not sure enough to question the said explanation that he had for each.
In a separate occurance about 6 months ago, this same instructor demonstrated a move on me causing me to fall to the ground and injure my ankle in a way that took me out for a solid week and did not return to normal for 4 months after. I resolved that situation by saying to myself, it was my fault, I fell wrong, KM is risky, I assume injury risks in these classes. After what happened on Thursday I am noticing a pattern between us, which is that I am trusting my body to this instructor and he has somehow caused injury or violated me. I never outright blamed him, because i didn’t think that he would injure me like that on purpose. I also wasn’t sure if it was my own fault. After a while I continued to go to his class, we talked about the incident and I became fine with the outcome and resoliution. He was overly apologetic and took blame for it even if it wasn’t entirely his fault. I accepted that much until Thursday.
I believe that he is an asset to your school and that overall he is a great instructor and person who did not intentionally mean to do these things to me. (??) I am requesting from you, the instructor of the FIGHT BACK seminar to help me work through this because I think it is appropriate now, for a female instructor to be the evaluator of the situations that have occured and tell me that it is normal or move forward with a mediation between the three of us so that this does not occur between him and any other students.
My phone number is below, and you can email me as well. Thank you for your help in this matter.
I am almost 35 and I have lived an adult life that seems like a constant continuum of trauma and recovery since the age of 17, but at least I am getting better at recognizing all the different stages and learning how to heal faster. I sent the email above today and await the next steps. It seems like a strange curse that more abusive men come flocking in like vultures when your downed, especially the one pretending to be concerned about what happened only to use my vulnerability as a way to abuse me more. An ex boyfriend whom I hadn’t seen in 2 years randomly called from outside my house in his car, in my vulnerability to all the recent violations, I told him to come up because I hadn’t seen him since I called the cops on him to kick him out of squatting in my apartment. He didn’t take advantage of my vulnerability, but he didn’t help to comfort the situation too much either because even after all these years, he still didn’t understand that he had ever been abusive in our relationship. It was a very strange uncanny coincidence, the universe must have heard my soul crying to be embraced. We laid in a codependent cuddle on my living room floor and even kissed a little. The temptation to sleep with him and invite him to get stuck in my life right where he left off was right there for me, but he left without sex and I was proud of my resistance. We didn’t even drink enough beers to get drunk. He did say goodbye at least 5 times and go down and up the stairs each time before finally leaving. (and Outkast sings,’Ah how, push and pull. everyone move to the back of tha bus..’)
Words are like grenades. They can injure or protect.
In my video, taken hours after the incident. I am mostly angry that I didn’t push that asshole harder or leave with his blood on my knuckles. I stood ready with my finger on my stunner ready to fight in the battle of my life, but again it didn’t happen. I have more whore revolutionary battle fantasies than a comic book.
Today I am taking a moment to realize all the ways that I have learned to resist and appreciate my wisdom and experience as a survivor and hope that it helps someone besides myself be stronger…
MARCH 23, 2011 MEETING W/ INSTRUCTOR and female supervisor tomorrow at 12:30pm. He tells her he never touched my genitals. This should be interesting…I am trying not to have an asthma attack thinking about it…
i have nothing to gain from this but healing. and you, you can gain knowledge to improve your practice. the school needs you, you are an asset to them. i do not gain money, i do not wish you to be fired or punished further. maybe i have lost a great teacher for a while and that is something that I see as a great loss that pains me more that this happened. (therefore there is no reason for you to not believe me.) i can’t stop myself from doing everything that I am doing. it’s happening naturally because the body and mind wants to be well as soon as it is injured. when i was robbed i filed a police report, i bought a stun gun and peper spray, i enrolled in mixed martial arts. i will ALWAYS do as much as is in my power to affect my survival…