Posted by on Mar 20, 2019 in education, intersectionality, oppression, prevention, sex, sex education, Sexuality, Trauma, Uncategorized | 0 comments

Once again, I find myself blowing the dust off of my poor neglected blog. To be completely honest, I wish I were coming back to this space under happier circumstances.

Serious allegations have come out about Franklin Veaux, co-author of More Than Two. Among the women who have shared their stories is his co-author, Eve Rickert. As of this writing, the only woman who has come forward, that hasn’t chosen to stay anonymous is Eve.

For more information, I recommend reading our initial statement, which we have posted to Medium.

So, I’m part of this support pod.

{content warning: discussion of abuse, abuse of power in the Poly community, partner violence}

I understand that for some, this situation may seem murky, as the perpetrator also identifies as a victim. After all, as I say in many of my own workshops, abuse dies not fall neatly along gendered lines, and women can absolutely be abusive towards men.

Here is why I am not equivocal in this situation, despite all sides identifying as abused parties:

This situation reminds me of the partner violence work I did when I interned at the Center on Halstead (an LGBTQ community center in Chicago). The Center has an anti violence program, where LGBTQetc victims of partner violence and hate crimes receive free services.

When couples came in, and one partner accused the other of being abusive, we always had to do an extra layer of evaluation.

This is not because we didn’t believe victims, but because all too often, the perpetrator would be the accuser.

Over a period of weeks, months or years, the perpetrator would push and needle and gaslight their target, until the target stopped being able to trust their own instincts. Inevitably, the target would hit a breaking point and lash out, at which point, the perpetrator would drag the target to therapy, demanding that the target work on their anger issues/volatility. (Cults often do this in macro. Scientologists and Ma Anand Sheela of the Rajneeshis spring to mind)

Without conducting an additional screen, it would be all too easy for a perpetrator to weaponize the therapy process, and use it as fodder for additional gaslighting. (Incidentally, this is why it’s super unethical to do couples therapy when abuse is present. Fun fact.)

Had I not had this experience, I too might be inclined to write this situation off as a case of “he said, she said.”

However, there are enough receipts and evidence of patterned harmful behavior, that I unequivocally believe these women’s stories.

I hope you do as well.