I’ve covered the subject of marital rape a number of times on this blog, which probably goes some way to explaining why I get so many hits from people searching for information on it. These posts for instance remain some of my most popular, and they continue to attract hits:
But even I was taken aback recently by the number of searches about marriage, coercion and rape that are landing people here, and by the actual search terms people are inputting.
By ‘I was taken aback‘, what I really mean of course is that ‘I found it completely and utterly fucking depressing‘.
Here are just a selection of search terms that have led people to this blog over the last 30 days:
‘how do i initiate sex when she is sleeping’
‘forced wife to have sex with me’
‘are spouses entitled to sex benefits’
‘is it ok to demand sex from your wife’
‘can i sue my wife for breach of wifely duties’
‘sex as a right of the husband’
‘should wife give husband sex when asked’
‘pressured to have sex with husband’
‘why does sex with my husband feel like rape’
‘how it feels to be raped by your husband’
‘if husband has sex with you after you said no is it a rape’
‘husband pressuring me to have sex’
‘sex out of duty’
‘should husband expect sex from wife’
‘can a wife withhold sex legally’
‘wives duty to sexually service her husband’
‘my husband pressured me to have sex even after i say no’
‘can he penetrate while i’m sleeping’
‘when your husband says he has rights to you sexually’
‘is it my husbands marital rights to have sex with me’
Now obviously some of those searches could be just general queries around the issue of marital rape and so on, and some could be from the same person typing in different phrases to try and find as much information as they can – I’m by no means trying to make any kind of claims around this being some sort of scientifically accurate peer reviewed study or anything. But equally I surely can’t be the only one to look at that list and think “Christ, it’s not just young people who need sex and relationship education in this country.“?
In a lot of ways I’m glad that those searches have got people here: I hope my writing has provided some of the answers they’re looking for. But just in case there’s still any doubt, let me reiterate the legal position:
The marital rape exemption was done away with in this country in 1992. So husbands do not have a “right” to have sex with their wives, and wives are not under any “obligation” or “duty” to sexually service their husbands. And yes, if your husband has sex with you even after you’ve said no, that is rape.
And from Rights of Women:
“A number of terms are used in relation to rape that appear to differentiate between different types of rape depending on who the defendant is and what relationship he has (if any) with the complainant. For example, reference may be made to marital rape, acquaintance rape, date rape or stranger rape. None of these phrases have any legal meaning as it is not relevant what relationship, if any, a defendant has or had to a complainant. Nor is it relevant if the act complained of occurred within a relationship. If the defendant intentionally penetrates with his penis the vagina, anus or mouth of the complainant without her consent where he does not reasonably believe in her consent the defendant has committed rape, regardless of the circumstances in which the incident occurred.“
As for whoever it was who typed this into a search engine and ended up here:
“can’t stop stalking her“
Unfortunately WordPress doesn’t provide me with details of who you are……
The Rape Crisis National Freephone Helpline is open from 12-2.30pm & 7-9.30pm every day of the year: you can call them on 0808 802 9999