Slap on the Wrist: When the Go-To Response Isn’t Enough by blogger Amanda

Slap on the Wrist: When the Go-To Response Isn’t Enough by blogger Amanda

Sexual assaults on college campuses often mean playing by the rules of that institution in terms of the survivor’s care afterwards and the consequences for the alleged assailant.
For many colleges and universities, this means establishing a no-contact order, which is meant to keep the individual at a distance from their accuser while the investigation into the matter is settled and the school decides on an appropriate resolution. This seems to be a good idea – keeping the victim at a safe distance from their attacker to avoid physical altercations or mental/emotional manipulation.
But this method of handling the situation while the investigation is pending has many flaws that these institutions have not bothered to address. This ends up making these schools less safe and leads to the belief, by survivors and advocates alike, that colleges and universities are more preoccupied with any potential loss of incoming funds than with helping their students feel safe and respected on campus.

Some of the flaws included in this no-contact method of dealing with reports of sexual assault:

  • When the accused has no shame in violating this no-contact order and continues to intimidate the survivor around campus and there is no consequence to their actions from any administration.
  • When institutions feel that the no-contact order is enough of a punishment and the investigation lacks any real effort.
  • When institutions treat the survivors as guilty and do not consider any other issues that may lead to violation of the no-contact order – i.e. situations in which the survivor is in an abusive relationship with their assailant and is being manipulated into contact or fears that leaving their partner is too dangerous.
  • When the no-contact order feels more like a gag order to keep the survivors quiet and not tarnish any reputations with “nastiness”.

Schools need to have better ways of implementing these no-contact orders as well as providing alternatives for individuals in situations where it may be harder to avoid their assailant.8438424347_1590a9fdbe_o

One way of doing that includes more specific no-contact orders, such as the one outlined by Tyler Kingkade of the Huffington Post, where the school went so far as to dictate that the accused could not be on campus outside of specified hours because of his constant violations of the no-contact order. These no-contact orders may seem overbearing to some, but it allows some survivors to feel more at peace and not fear constant retribution for speaking out.
Another is to provide better resources for the survivors to discuss their emotions, not to stifle them from discussing the “case” when it is so much more personal and traumatizing for them. This leads to the feeling that they are being blamed for what happened to them and the sense that the school just wants to make it all go away, not to give them any justice or sense of security.
One of the biggest things these institutions need to do for the survivors on their campuses is to find alternatives to the general “just leave each other alone” feeling that the current implementation of no-contact orders give to many. Ignoring each other won’t work if the alleged assailant decides to harass their victim for daring to report them and it won’t help the individual who cannot get away from their assailant for whatever emotional or physical reasons. There needs to be more done for the survivor, not just empty gestures that leave these people feeling even more victimized and hurt because they decided to reach out to the administration that was supposed to help them.

Currently colleges and universities don’t do anywhere near what they should be doing for the individuals on campus who report sexual assault. Some schools are starting to learn from their previous mistakes, but it is up to us – the students and the alumni and all the donors that make these institutions work – to tell them that “good enough” isn’t good enough.

Choosing to be Joyful for the Holidays: By Blogger Rose

Choosing to be Joyful for the Holidays: By Blogger Rose

Holidays can be a very fun time of year, but all the buying, eating, and even parties can be stressful.  I have accumulated a list of stress management tips for the upcoming holidays:

  1. This site explains that holiday-oriented tasks may take more time than originally planned, so it can be less stressful if you are already mentally prepared for it (i.e. shopping for the person who has everything, cooking, and/or decorating).
  1. Here is a site that shows how to find the silver lining even if you may associate the holiday time with grief, arguing, and/or disappointment.
  1. This site surprisingly noted that citrus helps your mood. Maybe a switch should be made from pumpkin to lemon meringue pie (but then again the spices in pumpkin pie might have some effect, too)!
  1. I totally agree with the tip to watch hilarious holiday films!
  1. This site states that it is always a good time to share the holiday cooking workload with whoever is coming over for dinner (Just make sure everyone knows what everyone else is bringing)!

I think almost everyone can point out good and bad memories from the holidays.  Regardless of what your previous experiences were and how you feel about them now, sometimes the best way to celebrate is to reflect on the past year(s) and think of what you have or have had and not what you have lost.  Happy Holidays and Happy New Year!

Don’t Repress, De-stress! By Blogger Rose

Don’t Repress, De-stress! By Blogger Rose

July 4th brings fireworks and fun but it can also bring on some anxiety from crowds and loud noises.  One way to handle the anxiety is to repress, but there are some other ways that may be more beneficial.

Take this site, which reviews ten different yoga moves to help relieve stress but also to just recharge and focus for the day ahead.  The “chair corpse pose” I actually have done before, and believe it or not, this just may be the best use for a chair other than sitting on it.

Better yet, why not eat something? Here is a helpful overview of the top ten foods for stress relief, and do not include devouring potato chips or a decadent dish of ice-cream.   Avocados and green tea would be my personal favorites of this list.

Ever heard the saying that if you repeat something enough it will ring true? One of the easiest methods is to develop a mantra to refocus.  My personal favorite on this site would be the mantra: “Let It Go”, but change the Go to Goat and watch this video.

If all else fails, take a cue from the wise goats and release whatever is bothering you in a healthy way.