Sex Crimes

At U-M, Sexual Violence Includes 'Discounting Feelings,' 'Withholding Sex'


George Bellows / Wikimedia Commons

The redefinition of the word violence continues among revelations that discounting a sexual partner's feelings and withholding sex constitutes sexual violence at the University of Michigan. The relevant info can be found at the university's "Stop Abuse" webpage:

Examples of sexual violence include: discounting the partner's feelings regarding sex; criticizing the partner sexually; touching the partner sexually in inappropriate and uncomfortable ways; withholding sex and affection; always demanding sex; forcing partner to strip as a form of humiliation (maybe in front of children), to witness sexual acts, to participate in uncomfortable sex or sex after an episode of violence, to have sex with other people; and using objects and/or weapons to hurt during sex or threats to back up demands for sex.

Criticizing someone sexually and withholding sex are unkind things to do, but they aren't violent acts in and of themselves. Indeed, a university spokesperson could only defend the definitions as appropriate within "a larger context," according to Derek Draplin of The College Fix:

The definitions of behaviors of violence … describe most accurately what occurs in an abusive relationship," [U-M spokesperson Rick Fitzgerald] said in an email. "Those behaviors not in the context of violence are not abusive.  A reader of this site would recognize that it's described as one behavior in the context of a pattern of behaviors to maintain power and control over an intimate partner."

But, as Draplin writes, universities make these slips all the time—treating disfavored behavior and physically painful behavior as one and the same. He cites an interview with the sexual violence support coordinator at Brock University in Canada in which the administrator claims "anything that makes someone feel unsafe" counts as violence.

Institutions of higher learning should be more precise with their definitions. Being insufficiently attentive to other people's feelings is not an act of violence.

For related coverage, see "Ohio State: Students Must Agree on Why They Are Having Sex."

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  1. …and withholding sex constitutes sexual violence at the University of Michigan.

    I was assaulted so many times in college and I didn’t even realize.

    1. I’ve been a victim for 38 years of marriage.

      1. Well, so is your spouse.

        1. It only takes one to withhold.

    2. “withholding sex and affection”

      I am a servant of the Swiss…and I am a victim of “sexual violence”.

  2. to have sex with other people;

    So, cheating on your gf will what? Get you hauled in front of some bullshit student court?

    1. I think everything between “strip” and “having sex with other people” should be read as being preceded by “forcing partner to”.

      1. I finally got that, but see my comment below. It still could easily ban certain relationships that are a bit kinkier.

        Basically, what if your fantasy is being “forced” to strip? Sure it’s consensual, but try proving that to a college hearing board.

        1. Then you’d better hope your partner is never pissed at you enough to denounce you to the Secret Police. This is a significant issue.

    2. Monday:
      WOMEN’S STUDIES MAJORS: Reproductive rights! You can’t tell me to not have an abortion! No government in the bedroom!

      WOMEN’S STUDIES MAJORS: We demand social acceptance and legal sanction of women being sexually shallow and irresponsible just like men! Get the government out of my bedroom!

      WOMEN’S STUDIES MAJORS: Men are treating women like sex objects! That’s wrong! Get the government involved!

      WOMEN’S STUDIES MAJORS: Men are looking at us and thinking about us sexually when we’re not interested! We need more government intervention!

      WOMEN’S STUDIES MAJORS: Men aren’t giving us sex! What’s going on?

      MEN: OH, WHAT DO THEY WANT NOW? Oh, look! A computer with free boobies and no issues!

    3. And so we come full circle, as adultery becomes illegal again, at the hands of “liberals”.

      1. Lets be honest, these rules only apply to men. “Withholding sex”? You can’t seriously believe women would want this rule applied to them… they would call that kind of rule institutionalized rape. Seriously, imagine for a minute a woman withholding sex as a punishment, as is so commonly done in relationships… and then a man making a complaint to college admins and having the woman sanctioned for “sexual violence”. You would have massive outrage railing against the administration “forcing” her to have sex if she didn’t want to be sanctioned by the school. And yet, somehow this rule passed muster when looking at it from a “women as victims” perspective.

        So basically what we now have, or are approaching, is women being stoned for adultery in the middle east, and men the same in the western countries.

  3. So, everything?

    Who put these pencil-neck pudknockers in charge?

    1. No one. We just keep acting like they’re in charge, instead of kicking them to the curb and mocking them mercilessly like the emotionally stunted child fascists they are.

    2. Who put these pencil-neck pudknockers in charge?

      That’s something a middle eastern terrorist would ask.

  4. So in a circumstance where one is being pushy and the other is saying no -both side are guilty of violence against their partner?

    1. That gives the officials all the freedom they want to hang whatever guy they want.

    2. P1. Look, I get that you want to jam a pine cone in my ass while I balance a TV on my head, but that is in no way sexually appealing.


    3. No; only the man is guilty.

      Now, the question of how they’re going to adjudicate sexual violence in gay relationships should be interesting.

      1. Any male sexual activity is violent. Getting rid of two instead of only one is a feature not a bug. Lesbians only hold hands and sing kumbayah to get off. [/sarc – having made the acquaintance of some seriously kinky lesbians.]

      2. Penises are EVIL.


    4. The purpose of most rules are to create rule breakers that can be punished on whim of those in power.

  5. One would think that any “institution of higher learning” could find at least one person on staff who could articulate their policies properly before going to print.

    1. Hey, it’s not her fault- she wasn’t a communications major man!

    2. Has it occurred to you that perhaps they actually did articulate their policies properly? You’re assuming that the goal here is to stop actual sexual violence, rather than create a pretext for attacking certain targets (men) as guilty of sexual violence.

  6. The War on Parody continues.

  7. forcing partner to strip as a form of humiliation (maybe in front of children)


    1. Someone is accidentally telling us about their kinks.

      1. Seriously, that’s what this whole debacle seems to be devolving into: weird administrator and advocate sexual fetishes being brought out into the light.

        1. If this whole thing isn’t a dominant mistress shtick, I’ll be very surprised.

      2. Someone is accidentally telling us about their kinks.

        That was my thought. I think maybe an investigation is called for.

    2. Maybe that’s the Dean of English Departments particular kink, and everyone else is getting damned tired of it.

      It ruins the wine and cheese party.

    3. it was a suggestion they just left out the ?

      (maybe in front of children?)

    4. “DOGS! I meant, maybe in front of dogs!”

    5. I was just wondering if anybody in this situation had thought of… oh, I don’t know…


      Pretty sure that forcing someone to strip in front of children would be breaking SOME kind of law. But then again, I’m not a lawyer.

      It takes years of employment in academia to come up with this stuff.

    6. Well, if this finally gets the TSA stopped, one good thing will have come out of it.

  8. I think you missed the full implications of this passage:

    forcing partner to strip as a form of humiliation (maybe in front of children), to witness sexual acts, to participate in uncomfortable sex or sex after an episode of violence, to have sex with other people; and using objects and/or weapons to hurt during sex or threats to back up demands for sex.

    While this may seem completely cool on the face of it, to me it seems like they just completely banned students from engaging in any form of BDSM or kink. Granted, that is consenual hitting, humiliation, etc. but a big part of the fantasy, as I understand it, is that the sub is being “forced” to be humiliated or do things that they may really find arousing, but sometimes have difficulty expressing. Safewords exist for much the same reason- because in that context, “no” doesn’t mean stop, it means “upbringing/societal convention/something is telling me that this is wrong and I shouldn’t want it…. but I rather enjoy it and would like it to continue.”

    For example: “Using objects or weapons to hurt during sex…” Um… that’s like a TON of BDSM and/or kinky sex.

    Of course, I am sure that the “sex-positive” feminists who approve of these policies would assure that of course consensual kink is okay (and even queer, because queer seems to mean to some people “any sex that isn’t cis hetero people having missionary”), because they refuse to accept or see the consequences of their actions.

    1. Feminists are like Catholic priests: both hate sex, pornography, and kink, mostly because they can’t have it themselves and don’t want the rest of us to have any fun.

  9. Examples of sexual violence include: discounting the partner’s feelings regarding sex

    Finishing and then rolling over to fall asleep while your partner wants to talk and snuggle…is that violent?

    1. Asking that question … is that violent?

      1. *Gets sweaty and nervous*

        Please Rich, let’s pretend I never asked, ok?

  10. Uh….so there is nothing you can do or not do that won’t make you a violent sexual predator should they choose to put their sights on you. I am guessing this applies only to males, if not i n theory then certainly in practice.

    I get it.

    So all whites are racists by virtue of their being white and all men are violent sexual predators by virtue of their being male.

    Academia has been taken over by the mentally ill. I am exaggerating or being rhetorical, it really has been.

    1. Suthenboy, you need to update your Sociology Dictionary!

      Whites aren’t racists by virtue of being white; whites are the ONLY people who can be racists because they can back up their discrimination with societal and social power.


      Best way to counter it? Point out that it is a very “Eurocentric” definition of racism and ignores racism in and among Asian countries (Chinese v Japanese v Koreans v Vietnamese).

      1. Yeah, I encountered people at college who actually believed this. The dorm sponsored talks where they said this sh*t.

        At one talk the presenter said that only the majority could be racist. Therefore, only whites could be racists. The presenter was black or Hispanic and most people there were Hispanic.

        I pointed out that it was all relative – Hispanics were a majority in the room, not whites. Hispanics could easily group together against whites and exert power. Boy, they did not like that after being told that they couldn’t be racists. Presenter made some BS argument about how it’s about society as a whole “We live in the US”. Hopeless.

      2. “and ignores racism in and among Asian countries (Chinese v Japanese v Koreans v Vietnamese).”

        They can’t grasp it. All those slanty-eyed people look alike to them.

        Leftism is a writhing bag of crude stereotypes given legal force.

      3. Chinese v Japanese

        WTF? That’s a Eurocentric view, too.

        The Chinese-on-Chinese racism runs pretty deep. Just because YOU think they all look alike doesn’t mean Chinese people think all Chinese are one “race”.

    2. I think its OK to be male if you tell everyone you’re a pony… or whatever you want to be.

      1. It’s also okay to be male if you used to be female.

        1. Wasn’t everyone a female as an embryo?

    3. Is it too soon to start calling in airstrikes on universities in order to incinerate the truly dangerous?

    4. “.so there is nothing you can do or not do that won’t make you a violent sexual predator should they choose to put their sights on you. ”

      Yep. You are guilty and can be punished. Mission Accomplished.

  11. The unwritten 4th slogan of Engsoc, withholding sex is rape.

    1. Wives everywhere are raping their husbands.

      1. And apparently I am blind to the first part of the comments.

        1. That’s what you get for masturbating too much.

          1. Masturbating too much? I don’t understand.

            1. Withholding masturbation would be raping yourself.

  12. Colleges survived bans on dating and stupid bans on other personal behavior in the ultra-conservative pre-60s time period.

    They will survive this round of idiocy too.

    1. The 1880s and 1920s don’t exist! LALALALA I CAN’T HEAR YOU!

    2. They will survive this round of idiocy too.

      Whether they deserve to or not.

      A stake thru the heart, cutting off the head and stuffing the mouth with garlic, and burning the corpse sounds appropriate.

    3. They will survive this round of idiocy too.

      They only survived with bailouts.

      Student loans are a bailout. Draft exemptions for college enorollees were a bailout.

      Colleges are welfare whores just like farmers and financial companies.

  13. If you have ever wondered, while watching or reading some dystopian movie/book, how they could breed out the desire for sex and manufacture kids in a lab or some other way – well, this is part of the instruction manual for how to get there. It is getting kind of creepy.

    1. Well, it would be creepy if it worked. Which it doesn’t.

      1. It works on the upper middle classes to an extent. And they are the intended target, as they are the group most likely to squeeze into the ruing class.

    2. Or would be if college students paid any attention to this shit.

  14. As a firm believer in the NAP, I still want to show these people what violence IS. If I don’t seethe with anger and get psychic satisfaction, can I go against the NAP for purely instructional purposes? THEN maybe they’ll get the difference between someone’s boyfriend being an asshole at a kegger from having an eye permanently blinded, an ear half ripped off, three teeth shattered, a broken forearm, and renal lacerations & other internal bleeding. You know, just for purely academic reasons.

    1. Only if you are an Objectivist is it permitted. Otherwise it’s haram.

    2. Either they (of course) know the difference, or they’re uneducable ideologues. The distinction is beside the point, however, and immaterial, since the upshot of their efforts has sod all to do with preventing abuse and everything to do with exercising extralegal power over others?preferably men.

  15. Microviolence is still violence!

  16. Reminds me of this Onion article:

    “EUGENE, OR?Joey Terzik, a Eugene-area 18-year-old, filed a formal complaint with the Oregon Department of Labor Monday, citing a “gross lack of sexual harassment” in his workplace….

    “In one such instance, Terzik walked into the kitchen and mentioned “how hot it was” to lead prep cook Rebecca Stanton, 20, who merely nodded in response. “She could have said, ‘It sure is hot, now that you’re here,’ or told me to take off my shirt, but she didn’t even look at me,” Terzik said….

    “Terzik said that although female co-workers frequently used potentially sexually suggestive job-related terms like “breadstick,” “sausage” and “hand-tossed,” never did they actually use them in a sexually suggestive manner. On two occasions, a female manager asked Terzik to “work the late shift with me,” but in both instances no sexual activity took place.”…..rass,1012/

  17. Off to the side on the U-M link:

    “If someone had given me one of those little cards with phone numbers on it, I don’t know. Maybe I would have called. I was so isolated, any friendship would have given me a little strength.”

  18. “Using the exact same logic and method of reasoning deployed by UMich ? namely, that readers will recognize the behaviors within a larger pattern of behaviors ? readers will also recognize that victims are implicitly female and perpetrators are male ? even though the policy does not explicitly state that,” she said, adding such extreme examples essentially label normal relationship behavior “abuse” and throw men under the bus.

    “Normal relationship behaviors are pathologized and framed as abuse when MEN do them,” she noted. “I am unaware of a single case in which the accused student is a woman and the victim is a man.”


  19. DEAN: I thought I said I didn’t want to see you in my office again!

    STUDENT: Sorry, Dean Martin.

    DEAN: I warned you about not having sex with your girlfriend, but she tells me you still aren’t doing it!

    STUDENT: She’s not my girlfriend, she’s just been stalking me, I do nothing to encourage her.

    DEAN: So you’re withholding *affection,* too! (makes a note). Well, son, you’re in a lot of trouble.

    1. DEAN: If you don’t want to be expelled, you’ll need to have hot, steamy jungle sex with that girl *tonight!* Use classroom 101 in the Phillips building. And don’t plug the hole in the wall, because, ah, the hold helps the air circulate. And just to warn you, as the air goes through the hole it makes sounds like a middle-aged man fapping, but it’s just a trick of the wind.

      1. By today’s standards, Dean Martin was getting continually raped.

  20. How is any of this remotely legal and not, in fact, actionable on its face? I’d fucking sue the school.

    1. My suspicion is, Pro L, that it is. And, eventually, a lot of colleges are going to realize they’ve built themselves up huge unfunded contingent legal liabilities that are going to stress an already troubled business model to the breaking point.

      1. Their defense will be that the DoE made them do it under Title Ix.

        1. Not gonna work, I don’t have any examples offhand, but there have been numerous examples where people have asked the IRS, EPA, etc. for guidance on issues when there was confusion, gotten written advice as to how to proceed, and subsequently been brought up on charges for doing exactly as told. When they attempted to use the guidance they got as a defense, even when said guidance wasn’t in dispute, they were told “You fucked up, you trusted us” and been convicted anyway.

    2. Something something standing?

      1. Intentional infliction of emotional distress.

    3. Legal smeagol.

      They have the ring of power, and they’re going to use it.

      1. One thing that may save us is the absurdly evil power of the plaintiffs’ attorney. Sue, sue, and sue again. Sue them all.

        1. So you are really saying this is a dastardly plot spawned out of the law schools to absorb all of the excess JDs.

  21. withholding sex and affection

    me set bitch up!

    1. DUDE!

    2. Now I have an image in my brain of Cookie Monster as a sexual predator. Thanks a lot!

      1. Muppets are all into fisting.

  22. withholding sex constitutes sexual violence

    So by incident rate, that makes women the most sexually violent gender by orders of magnitude.

    I had no idea I was this big a victim. Where’s my government cheque?

  23. criticizing the partner sexually

    Again, women rule the roost. I’m’a cross the street when a woman approaches. Just to be safe.

    1. That sounds like you’re withholding from her, you bastard.

    2. Don’t forget to clutch your penis when you see one approaching. Because you never know what kind of sexual violence you have to protect yourself from. AND they all look the same. 😉

      1. Clutching your penis is sexual violence, you pervert!

  24. Reminds me of the ex-boyfriend I had who claimed that I was harassing him by ignoring him and treating him like a total stranger.

    1. Imagine how he’d have felt had you gotten married?

      Boom, I’m here all week.

  25. withholding sex constitutes sexual violence at the University of Michigan


    There Aren’t Enough Marriageable Men

    It sexist to think you’re entitled to sex, but not to think you’re entitled to a marriage.

    1. Note how high the number for women is on “wants partner to have a steady job” compared to the men. No matter how much Marcotte-style feminism tries, you can’t subsume the fundamental impulse in women to desire a mate that will provide them with financial security.

    2. RE: Marriageable Men

      I wonder how they define that term. Does it mean men that are ‘manageable’? In other words, will kowtow to a woman’s demands?

      If what is going on at MU and other universities, that’s what it looks like.

      1. That has always been the definition of a marriageable man

  26. withholding sex […]

    Ok, so when the masochist asks for beatings and pain, can the sadist still say “No!”?

  27. You know, if you apply to one of the colleges with this kind of stupid shit policy, or remain enrolled in one that adopts it, then I can’t really feel sorry for you.

  28. Lets just hittme up dude. LIke for real.

  29. A reader of this site would recognize that it’s described as one behavior in the context of a pattern of behaviors to maintain power and control over an intimate partner.

    Perhaps a graduate of your superannuated kindergarten would, but people who know how to comprehend the English language are going to understand that this is pure bullshit.

    This phrase, for example, makes no reference (overt or implied) to a pattern of behavior, with the exception of “always demanding sex”:

    Examples of sexual violence include: discounting the partner’s feelings regarding sex; criticizing the partner sexually; touching the partner sexually in inappropriate and uncomfortable ways; withholding sex and affection; always demanding sex;

    Even the second phrase contains no such reference:

    forcing partner to strip as a form of humiliation (maybe in front of children), to witness sexual acts, to participate in uncomfortable sex or sex after an episode of violence, to have sex with other people; and using objects and/or weapons to hurt during sex or threats to back up demands for sex.

    1. but people who know how to comprehend the English language are going to understand that this is pure bullshit.

      And none of them have any authority.

    2. “always” demanding sex could mean demanding it once per equinox. “You always demand sex every three months!!! That is a pattern of sexual violence!”

  30. When I form my own private university, i am making Smoove B the Dean of Student Affairs.

    Students will be able to get their Freak Jones on without undue complication

  31. Thank God for community college girls.

  32. Makes me a bit ashamed of my alma mater. Hopefully most U of M students disagree with this.

    1. I would think “Michigan” would be shame enough in the first place, being a socialist hell hole and all.

  33. Damned SOCONS, ruining all the fun by forcing their puritanical obsessions on the rest of us.

    1. ^^ THIS

      There are those here who like to prattle about ‘socons’.

      Socons are trying this, Socons are saying that.

      But these fuckers are actually DOING things. Not ‘trying’, not ‘saying’. Doing.

      Socons get shot down every time they try to do something.

      These people get applauded as they destroy liberty.

  34. TO: All
    RE: This Is Nothing BUT Manipulation of Men

    Will these same rules apply to the little girls attending these universities?

    Can any guy, even none attending, go into the Student Union, get refused sex by a student and haul her up before these kangaroo courts?


    [Woman, n., The unfair sex. — Ambrose Beirce, The Devil’s Dictionary, c. 1800s.]

    P.S. This has been a problem for a VERY LONG TIME?. 😉

    1. Little girls? You’re a misogynist.

  35. Would not this terminate the most dreaded line of all — “sorry I have a headache.”

    1. RE: The Headache Excuse

      Actually, sex is good for relief of headaches.

  36. So, if my girlfriend refuses to have sex with me, I can have her up on charges and get her expelled? Cool!

    1. RE: Sorry?.Mannie?.

      ?.it only applies to men who refuse or disparage or cast a mean look at girls.

  37. So men are to give women sex on demand, where, when and how they demand it, but not be interested in it when women aren’t, and they’re supposed to do all this while having the feelings women instruct them to have.

    Sounds like U-M is advocating sexual slavery for men. They certainly aren’t holding women to this standard. Perhaps it would be easier if they just shot 90% of men, and kept the rest chained in the basement for reproductive use.

    And they wonder why more and more, men aren’t interested in having anything more than one night stands when they’re college age.It’s because too many women in college buy into this crap.

    1. RE: Sexual Slavery FOR Men?

      More like OF men.

      1. Sorry, must have been a Freudian slip from my sexual predator mind. Because I have a penis. And all penis-holders are sexual predators… I mean… this isn’t going to come out well… no! That’s not what I meant! 😉

  38. Who can find a virtuous woman. Her worth is greater than rubies. — Proverbs 31

    Probably not at University of Michigan?. 😉

  39. Ok… Ohio State, Michigan, the rivalry doesn’t need to go this far. Seriously, leave it on the field!

  40. Let me see if I understand the Feminist perspective:

    – If a man sleeps with a drunk girl and she later regrets it he could be charged with not getting consent.

    – If a man don’t sleep with a girl because she’s drunk but she really wanted it he could be charged with withholding sex and affection.

    1. Uh no. Either you’re being willfully obtuse or you’re an idiot.

      Regretting something that you consented to isn’t rape. However, affirmative enthusiastic consent must be given. Must be.

      If you don’t sleep with anyone it’s nothing. It’s your choice not to sleep with someone. DERP.

      1. What constitutes “affirmative enthusiastic consent” in your opinion? Is someone moaning ‘yes, yes’ and grinding herself into you “affirmative enthusiastic consent”?

  41. In the context of being in a relationship withholding sex can be an act of cruelty. Nice to see this finally being noticed.

    If you’re in doubt of this, be in a long term relationship wherein one of the partners regularly withholds sex as a form of expressing anger, or getting something from the other.

  42. So what happens when 1 partner demands sex all the time and the other partner withholds it? Sounds like they are both perpetrators of sexual violence. Gotta love bureaucratic thinking!

  43. “anything that makes someone feel unsafe” counts as violence.

    Trying to make people forget that they own their feelings, or should give up ownership of their feelings; should count as violence.

  44. So it is violence to demand sex and to withhold sex. Burning a candle at both ends, I see.

    forcing partner to strip as a form of humiliation (maybe in front of children)

    What’s bugging me is just where did this come from? ‘maybe in front of children’??

  45. What I find lovely about this is that men are the ones complaining that these interpretations of violence are actually violence. Witholding sex is now violence? LOL Poor dudes.

    Now some of the things mentioned ARE assault. Any kind of forcing of touch and constant insults are what I would consider sexual violence.

    Withholding sex is not violence. You may not like it but you can’t force someone to DO something they aren’t consenting to.

    It’s just like when men talk about DV they think that a wife asking them to take out the garbage 5 times is DV. LOL. It’s not. It’s called a reminder. Are we going to start charging alarm clocks with DV? Ah! You reminded me to get up! Arrest that alarm clock!

    Truth is, we live in a patriarchal world where men exert their control over women. Women are becoming liberated slowly but surely. We’ll keep going. I hope someday that men can’t exert control over women in any way. I dream of that world and it’s coming!

    1. Boy, you really missed the point, that you mandy?

  46. If you’re confused about feminism, here is a good educational video from YouTube:

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