My grandmother spent 13 years in a psychiatric hospital because she had an affair with a married man

I am sick and tired of reading comments online by anti-feminists. Every time a man like me writes anything in support of feminism, there’s a 50/50 chance some arsehole will comment about it being a ploy “to get laid” or some similar bullshit. And by the way, when you make such statements, like a dramatic monologue, your statement reveals details about yourself and your horribly misguided misogynistic view of women. You reveal that you see them not as human beings but as objects to be fucked.

The truth is, there are many reasons why my views have shifted to their current position over the years, but I have always been sympathetic to the plight of women, and the start of all this was the realization of what my grandmother experienced at the hands of society that vilifies women simply for existing and having the same human desires as men.

I don’t know the whole story, but what I do know is this: My grandmother spent 13 years in Valkenberg mental hospital for “insomnia”. The story I was told was that she was raped by her stepfather, and after the rape, she lost her memory and was committed to the psychiatric hospital for 13 years. The “rape” led to her pregnancy and the birth of my mother’s sister. Upon her release, she was raped again, leading to another pregnancy and the birth of my mother.

That was the story my mother believed, but I always had my doubts. First of all, she only went to Valkenberg once, not after the second pregnancy. Secondly, as a father who had a lot of unprotected sex before my son was conceived, I know it takes more than one time to conceive a child, and more than two times to conceive two children.

Recently I heard something that makes the story even more implausible, but at the end of the day, nothing can be proven because all the people involved are long dead. Even my grandfather died when my mother was only three years old, literally run over by a bus because he insisted on riding his bicycle after losing his hearing.

My suspicion is simply that she had an affair and was treated like nothing, treated like a subhuman because she was in love with the wrong person. Or she was indeed a victim of rape, and was punished rather than the man who raped her. I’ll never know the truth but I do know that the treatment of women was abhorrent back then, and is still bad today.

Things have improved over the years, and I do not believe that a woman in this country could be locked away for 13 years for the same reasons today. But we still have a long way to go. I used to lie awake at night, trying to imagine how my grandmother, who was one of the kindest people I ever knew, managed to cope with being locked up in an institution for thirteen years.

So don’t project your macho dudebro bullshit on me.

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