Congratulations to you for standing up for yourself! So many women are humiliated and shamed until they are literally paralyzed. I recently had this happen to a associate by her boyfriend. He sent pics to a person at her job on their work phones. That person shared the pics in a secret Facebook group and someone that knew her told her about it. She was unable to report it because her father was a city police officer, which was an entirely other issue she had to deal with. I knew her ex that did this and I could not believe it. He continues to use social media as if he has done nothing wrong.
We need a ICAA (Internet Crimes Against Adults) in addition to ICAC (Internet Crimes Against Children) which works to help victims of revenge porn and prosecutes these perps to the fullest extent of the law. Furthermore, every state needs to catch up and update laws to address cybercrimes. It is absurd that men are able to use the internet to inflict physical and emotional harm without criminal punishment or civil damages. I think we need to rethink how we approach these criminals since state laws aren’t truly cyber crime ready for individual adult victims. If criminal punishment is not an option, then perhaps civil lawsuits and public outings may be an alternative. I’ve learned over the years, there is truly very little recourse for this type of crime for women.
Revenge porn is very similar to being raped. The person that commits the crime gets off Scott free, and gets the benefit of being innocent until proven guilty. If the evidence isn’t an open and shut case (meaning their is easy to find physical evidence), most times the detectives and prosecutor don’t want to touch the case. It’s about winning and losing to them. Your life, your pain, your sorrows are like a basketball game to the criminal justice system. If they think they can win, they will go for it. If it’s weak or too much work…….well we might help you seek justice. Sometimes, they don’t even believe in their victim because of their own personal biases.
Meanwhile, victims are left to pick up the pieces of their shattered lives, find help and supports (there are so few to deal with this problem). My heart goes out to you. Continue the good fight! Thank you for sharing your battle, your shame, your courage and your struggles. You’ve perfectly described the phases of trauma victims of this type of abuse/assault endure.
Most importantly, I want to thank you for the unexpected glimmer of hope this article provides to women globally struggling with similar experiences. As a an advocate for victims of sexual crimes, non-intimate partner violence, stalking, and dating violence………….please know you’re an inspiration!