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DV Types You Don't Know: Revenge Porn (Tied for #2)

Updated: Feb 14, 2023

As we near the end of DVAM (Domestic Violence Awareness Month) in 2021, we focus on the type that tied with digital abuse for the #2 ranked type of DV that participants in our DV Awareness training in September 2021 said they had never heard of before our training. This type is none other than Revenge Porn.

What is Revenge Porn?

Revenge Porn Definition: the taking and/or posting of sexually illicit images of partner/former partner to use as blackmail.


Is It Really THAT Big of a Deal?

You decide.


One revenge porn survivor's words may help you understand what someone's constantly fearly thoughts might look like. She says, "every time I met with a client I wondered if they had seen me naked."


If you're still thinking not a big deal...


A study revealed that revenge porn survivors suffer the same mental health issues of a sexual assault survivor, including but not limited to PTSD (post traumatic stress disorder), anxiety, depression, and a feeling of the loss of control over their own bodies. This is the same type of mental trauma described by sexual assault survivors as well.


To help you take a look at how it might manifest, take a look at our article in the August edition of the Urban Experience Magazine, Courageous Truths: Bree's Story.


It's NOT the Survivor's Fault!


Like every other type of DV (domestic violence), revenge porn is NOT the survivor's fault. Instinctively, our society knows that. When Jennifer Lawrence, Kate Upton, and Kirsten Dunst were victimized in this way, our society responded with sympathy and compassion - and we should. However, when people like Blac Chyna are victimized through revenge porn, they are shamed, belitted, and even made the punchline for jokes, even characterized as deserving of the violence.


What Can You Do If It Happens to You?

  1. Strategy Helps. There are a few websites I browsed while writing today's blog that look like they do a good job of helping someone walk through what to do when they realized they have victimized in this way. Here they are:

    1. The Cyber Helpine.com

    2. Cyber Civil Rights.org

  2. Support Helps.

    1. Lean on your tribe. Do you have a circle, a tribe, a village that always has your back? Talk to them. Let them know this has been devastating for you and let them be a support system for you during this time.

    2. Talk to your therapist. This type of attack not only violates your body, and your privacy, but it absolutely rattles your self-respect. Somehow sexual violence always makes the victimized individual feel wrong, immoral, dirty, shameful. You will need someone who is trained to help you process it and keep your self image intact. If you are a Black woman reading this article and are in the greater DSM area, we have a list of recommended Black trauma-informed therapists for you to reference. Beautiful, please take care of YOU: CFire Recommended Therapist List

Big News in DVAM2021 (in case you missed it)!

  1. We opened our first Community Safe Space! If you are a Black female victim of DV and you are needing to plan your escape, we want you to be able to do it in a place where you feel comfortable, within your own community, and in SAFETY. Call us at 515-428-0077 to get set up today!

  2. There are culturally-responsive resources for Black women dealing with DV. We are learning more and more about resources for Black female DV victims and creating more and more tools for Black female DV survivors. Here's what we have so far for you:

    1. Victim Tools

      • Community Safe Spaces: call us at 515-428-0077 to get connected

      • An African Crisis Center (Nisaa African Family Services). There are similarities between the expectations and weight of African women and Black women from our respective cultures and the society we all inhabit in America. They are well versed and willing to help: call us at 515-428-0077 to be referred

      • Free Lock Change Services: call Union of Black America at 515-381-6757 and tell them you're a victim and need your locks changed. They will help you!

      • Black Mental Health Support. It's important to have the support you need for short- and long-term trauma you need to process. Here again is the list of Black trauma-informed therapists we have vetted for our women: CFire Recommended Therapist List

    2. Survivor Tools

      1. Ending the DV Cycle. We don't want to just get you out of DV, we want to give you the tools to stay out of DV. We facilitate training developed by a Black woman for Black women to address participants' individual foundational predispositions to DV by identifying them, identifying the people who planted them, freeing themselves from the guilt of those vulnerabilities, and connecting them back to a therapist to help them close off those vulnerabilities. We make sure to help them develop the vision to spot unhealthy behaviors, set boundaries in healthy relationships, and end/not accept unhealthy relationships that are not able to be formed into healthy ones. This groundbreaking program is called Empowerment through the Arts. Groups are full at 4 women. Rolling registration is always open.

Urban Experience Magazine

We have a monthly article in this wonderful magazine that is all about topics we need to know more about within the Black community within Iowa. Its editor-in-chief, Dwana Bradley, asked us to write something monthly about DV. After reflecting and seeking wise counsel on how to help our Black women and community better understand how it impacts our women, I realized storytelling was the best way to engage readers to give them the facts and depth of knowledge we so desperately need here. Monthly we introduce a new fictitious character based on interviews with real women, books regarding DV victim-survivors, and internet research. We give a fuller understanding to the way it looks in real life and hopefully help the words jump off the page into realizations and clarity. Here is the link to October's article: UEM article 10/2021





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