The Vagenda

I Was Raped While Couchsurfing

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What music should you listen to when about to commence writing about a personal account of rape? This is what I’m considering right now. I have a dark sense of humour, but when I was about to make the long bus journey from Barcelona to Almeria, and I thought to myself : “Ok, this is my first couchsurfing experience; worst case scenario the guy rapes and murders me”, I didn’t think I would be half right. However, I am happy I wasn’t murdered. A number of my friends possibly believe that I put myself in more risky situations with men than a lot of other women do. I’m perhaps a little naïve, and like to believe that good people, and good men, do exist. And they do. Although, I was a little unsure of the category José fell under.

I arrived in Almeria at around 11pm. I knew very little about my host, José. He sent me an invitation on couchsurfing, which I accepted, somewhat ironically having turned down another invitation to go to Madrid (the destination I originally had in mind) to sleep in a “big bed” next to a random Italian I had never met before. I actually thought I had taken the safer option. I felt uncomfortable around José – this was my first impression. But I like to give people the benefit of the doubt. He was introverted, shy and somewhat awkward. And he was very intelligent, a real academic. I got into his car and he drove us back to his family’s home. After having lost his permanent job as a teacher, he was living back at home with his parents and a few brothers and sisters, all of whom spoke no English. The house was in the middle of nowhere, between two small villages. I had no sense of the direction we drove in since it was night time, and I had been on a bus for thirteen hours. I wasn’t exactly taking notes or plotting escape routes. I tried to be polite, made conversation, but could barely keep my eyes open. I was lucky enough to have my own room. I slept amazingly well.

It took me three or four days to feel comfortable with José. I grew to like him. I felt great sympathy for his circumstances. He was clearly depressed about a lack of work, the economic situation in Spain, and also the lack of girlfriend. At one point he demanded of me in a very sudden and awkward way: “Let me love you!” I said I couldn’t. I was a traveler, not looking for a boyfriend or for love, maybe just a fling. I said to him that sleeping together would be a bad idea because we really weren’t at all on the same page. I thought it would be cruel to get his hopes up. On the fourth night, he seduced me and I considered changing my mind.

I wondered about my attraction to José. Was it physical? Emotional? Or did I just pity him? Couchsurfing with him was one of the most emotionally confusing situations I have ever experienced. I felt his sadness so deeply. I was desperate to help him in some way.

His attempt at seducing me in his bedroom worked. I did feel that I wanted to have sex with him. He told me we should go to my room because his room was opposite his parents. He suggested a cup of tea. I agreed.

He brought tea to my bedroom. I sat on the bed and he sat on the chair. I let him close the door. I let him undress me. I didn’t want to kiss him, but eventually I let him. I liked the feeling of being touched at the beginning. He examined every inch of my body, studying me like some kind of specimen. He touched me but I didn’t touch him back. He told me to, to show him some kind of love. Anything. I felt sorry for him. I told him I couldn’t love him and he said that he didn’t want my love anymore, or to have a relationship with me. He just wanted me. Maybe just my body. He told me to close me eyes, and he continued to touch me. I said it didn’t feel right anymore, and I tried to push him away. Not too forcefully though because I was afraid. I was completely dependant on him. I was in his family’s home. I didn’t know how to get to the nearest town. His family spoke only Spanish. He touched me. Then he turned me around onto me knees and stomach. I told him to stop, repeatedly. He didn’t.

It sounded like he was crying. I lay very still afterwards. I asked him why he didn’t stop and he said that it was too late. I said that was bullshit. He laughed. He said that was the first time he heard me swear. He tried to touch me again and I pulled away from him. I got up and had a shower. When I came back into the room he was dressed and remaking the bed meticulously. I had never seen a bed being made so perfectly, despite the stain on the sheets. I watched him as I put fresh clothes on. He had folded the clothes he removed from me and placed them in a neat pile on the table. He was a perfectionist. After he made the bed he went to have a shower. I turned the light off and got into bed. I didn’t know what had just happened. I felt physically disgusted, like I was a piece of meat.

This was my experience of rape. I wondered if it was my fault, if I had led him on. But I should be allowed to change my mind. I should be allowed to have control over my own body. I wondered about language and cultural barriers. How ridiculous – José was an English teacher.

This was not the stereotypical idea I had in my mind of how rape occurs. I wasn’t attacked by a stranger in a dark alley. I was raped in the family home of my host who was supposed to be offering me accommodation as a gesture of hospitality. His family was home when it happened.

José drove me to the bus station two days after he raped me. I don’t know about other people’s experiences of rape, but I had the opportunity to confront him about what he did to me. He apologised in a meaningless way, as though he had accidentally trodden on my foot. I was frustrated. I wanted him to feel much more guilt than what he did. I had felt so much empathy towards him, and he had none for me. He didn’t realise the severity of what he had done, or at least he didn’t appear to. I made him drive me to a chemist to buy the morning after pill. He said to me on a subconscious level he knew I was trapped at his house, and that he wanted to get me pregnant so that I would be forced to stay with him. How fucked up, I thought.

Still, I wasn’t sure of my feelings. I knew that I had been raped, but I still pitied him. It was a strange combination of pity, anger and disgust. It wasn’t until three or four months after it happened that I realised how he manipulated me emotionally. All I feel for him now is anger.

I consider myself a feminist. Generally in life, I feel like a strong, liberated woman; in control of my mind, my body and my sex life. It wasn’t until this happened to me, that I really started questioning my sense of control. I started thinking about other situations I had been in previously where I felt I was coerced into having sex, when I hadn’t really wanted to, but I went along with it anyway. The feeling of rape for me wasn’t at all like the feeling of consensual sex. Rape is like someone masturbating with your body. You are made to feel like nothing but a tool for someone else’s stimulation. No person deserves to feel like this.

So here I am, listening to music, and writing about my experience of rape. I am certain that there are many other people who have had similar experiences that don’t conform to the stereotype of “girl attacked in dark alley”. I wanted to share mine because I’m choosing to own it, to not be ashamed about speaking out about this very taboo subject, and to make others aware that this happens much more often than what people may think. I don’t want to feel like a victim. I would encourage other people to also speak out. I left it too late to report José to the police, but I did report him to Couchsurfing, and his profile was deleted from the website. I have since had very positive experiences couchsurfing with other single men. Like I said, there are some good ones. I will however be plotting escape routes in the future. Better to be safe than sorry.

- Benita Dass-Grasse

57 thoughts on “I Was Raped While Couchsurfing

  1. I am terribly sorry this happened to you. It is incredibly brave of you- how you confronted him and decided to own the horrible experience. Thank you for sharing this, it was an amazing eye-opener.

  2. A friend of a friend was ‘date raped’ (i say date in quotes because it wasn’t a date. the guy took them out for drinks) in Spain couch surfing.
    I’m sending you massive, massive love.

  3. I was never raped, but two of my closest friends were.
    None of them in an alley. Both of them in a room while a party was going on in the rest of the apartment. Their friends were there, just a few meters away.
    Both were guys they were flirting with that evening, both girls said they clearly said no and tried to fight them off, but couldn’t. They never reported the guys, perhaps because they were too young and were drinking, I don’t know. One said it never even occurred to her to do it.
    It took them years to tell me about it, even though we are very close. But when they did, their story reminded me of yours – the helplessness they felt, the feeling of “being a piece of meat”, the guys just doing what they wanted and not being repentant about it. The years it took them to trust a guy again.
    I experienced a trauma just by listening to them. Kudos to you for sharing this.

  4. Thank you for this awareness-raising article. Being trapped in an unknown place like that with that piece of shit must have been awful. I think it’s great that you’re using your experience to highlight the nature of ‘non-dark-alley’ rapes.

    I could relate to what you wrote because I was nearly raped by a flatmate years ago. We had already had consensual sex before but that particular time he got aggressive and carried on even though I was saying no repeatedly. In the end I managed to get free of his grip and lock myself in my room. The next day he put a note under my door apologizing for the ‘way I thought he had treated me’.

    Like you, I felt torn between pity and anger and it took me years to even realise that what I’d experienced was attempted rape.

  5. Thanks everyone for the comments. I have primarily received supportive responses from people. But there have still been a few guys (not surprisingly only men) i’ve told who’ve laid the blame on me, at least partly. But I put this down to stupidity and a lack of education. (“Stupid” is another category of men!) There are so many misconceptions around rape, which need to be spoken about in order for people to understand the various circumstances where rape can occur. I feel that even if someone is thinking “I don’t want this”, and doesn’t say anything, they are being raped – psychologically it ends in the same result – which is a feeling of dehumanisation. It saddens me to think of so many other people going through similar experiences.

  6. I’m so sorry this was done to you, but telling your story is helpful in battling the stereotype of ‘dark alley’ rape, as you said. It’s such a shame that even survivors themselves (who know more than anyone what they did and did not consent to) still seem to question their own stories if they don’t conform to the narrative of an improbably innocent, totally sober woman being violently attacked by a crazed stranger. I know 4 people who have had experiences of rape and sexual assaulted and they were all much more similar to the scenario described in this article than that stereotypical story.

  7. Thank you for sharing your story. As a fellow Couchsurfer I’m so sorry to hear that your good faith was abused like that. I must admit, when I read the headline I thought it was going to be a ‘dark-alley’ story to warn against the perils of lone female travel. Thank you for highlighting that experiences of rape don’t necessarily conform to this stereotype. I hope you have found some sense of relief in sharing your experience.

  8. Thank you for sharing your story with such strength and honesty. People like this shouldn’t be tolerated as it sounds like he used his introverted frailty as a manipulative weapon. I realise it is difficult for you having experienced this, but in my eyes I say Fuck Pity for this guy, he doesn’t deserve this element of your being. All the best xox

  9. ‘He said to me on a subconscious level he knew I was trapped at his house, and that he wanted to get me pregnant so that I would be forced to stay with him’

    I can’t express how much anger I feel when I read that. How fucked up is a person when they take away someone’s choice to decide what to do with their life and body and impose their will on them like that?

  10. I applaud you! I’m so sorry and so angry.

    It seems to be very common for the mental impact of trauma to take 3-4 months to be felt. Maybe it takes that long to put things in context?

    Hitchhiking, I often feel dependent on the people picking me up. One of the most important things I learned was to trust my discomfort around people and to stop giving them the benefit of the doubt. Turning down lifts is difficult but necessary – if only to make sure you don’t end up in the wrong place, never mind being assaulted. I’ve been very lucky so far.

    The first time I couchsurfed at short notice, I ended up having to give this enormous and quite unkempt man a massage to beg him off. It was clear that he wanted more, he kept undressing more and more every time he went into his room and making the most uncomfortable comments about showering together etc. I felt extremely vulnerable and that night I didn’t sleep a wink, I made my excuses and left in the early morning. I was lucky. Since then I use couchsurfing only in advance and check out how other people talk about them. One thing I’ve learned: beware of people for whom the only compliments are about their pets! If people are avoiding talking about the person who hosted them you know it’s everyone gets a bad vibe from them.

    Is that all we get to go on? Bad vibes from ourselves and other people? It’s so fucked up. Often you don’t even get that.

    Thank you for writing this.

  11. Thank you so much for sharing this and I’m sorry and angry that this happened to you.

    Not sure if you feel you need any support, but it is out there so I thought I’d share just in case (or for others reading this thread). You can look up your nearest support centre via the Rape Crisis website:

    They’re pretty boss I hear.

    In sisterhood x

  12. Amazing article and so well written. I am full of empathy for you and what you experienced. The strength it must take to write something like this must be immense. I had a pretty heated discussion with my boyfriend’s mum once who told me emphatically that rape by someone you knew that you were in a sexual situation with and then decided you didn’t want it anymore, couldn’t possibly be seen in the same light as stranger in a dark alley rape. I think i’d like her to read this article.

  13. Sounds like you should have bailed right there and then and not continued if at any moment you felt threatened. If a woman were to explicitly tell me she wanted me to get her pregnant during a casual sex encounter, I don’t think I’d have kept going.

  14. Yes it’s about education and the understanding that No means No but I do think it’s also a matter of character. It’s just common human sence that if the person you are with feels uncomfortable you should stop and respect their choice. Not all men are educated about rape but they do have that common sence to listen to their partners and that guy was obviously a horrible pathetic person.
    I was in bed once with a guy that I had invited over but unsure of having sex or not. We kissed and got semi undressed, we were touching each other but I grew more and more uncomfortable so I asked him to stop. He listened to me and stoped and let me tell you, he was drunk as fuck. So I am not buying the whole drunk excuse or any other excuse I read about. Whoever proceed despites the NO makes a consious decision to. Education or no education. That guy heard me and respected my choice, like any grown up should do.

    On a side note there with him on top I realized how easy would have been for him to carry on and that scared me. One reason that I am a feminist is that we as women have to deal with the threat of rape even when we don’t have to.

  15. Please tell me you’re not serious? He said that *after* he raped her. And she did try to “bail” before things escalated – there was no casual sex involved, only rape.

  16. Men also have to deal with the threat of rape (though in the UK the legal definition of rape has to be a penis into a vagina, though that does vary from country to country. Regardless of legal definitions, any experience of sexual assault is devastating). There’s a lot of misconeption that if a woman forces herself on a man he would just love it and enjoy it, when it is just as damaging for that to happen to a man. Plus, women do also drug men or assault them in their sleep though it is almost never reported in the media, and if it is, it’s almost comical such as the scene where Orson is assaulted in ‘Desperate Housewives’, or the scene in ‘The Pill’ when the girl starts having sex with a sleeping man, and that wasn’t presented as a problem. Imagine if the genders were reversed. There is also the issue of man on man rape- it’s not just a problem facing women at all. x

  17. Hi Benita,

    I was actually searching for horrible CS member experience because I will be starting hosting people this coming April 2015 and would like to know more about people experiences and I ended up in your page. I am very sorry that this happened to you but you are very brave and thank you for sharing your story because of this story you already prevented other ladies from being raped by some creepy CS member.


  18. Of course I will go to court for deffamation and violence etc agains this man.

    Of course I will go to court to attack CS and Concentrix.

    But I might do it in a collective case even for this man, I might do it with other women. Not only me.

  19. Rape is a terrible thing & no one ever deserves to have their body violated…..but What exactly did you expect to happen? And why do you continue to couchsurf…..with men? This perplexes me. I do not believe in victim blaming however there is very little sympathy to be had for women that place themselves in ridiculous situations like this. You’re in a strange land….with a man. A stranger. Someone who you know absolutely NOTHING ABOUT. Ever heard of human trafficking?!? Is putting your life and health in danger really worth it?!? Be smart, ladies! Don’t run into on coming traffic then cry when you get hit by a car because a car was bound to hit you! This notion that women can just act as freely as men is ridiculous because perverts and rapist will be around as long as humanity exists. Do your part to protect yourself!

  20. For the first line of this to make logical sense in accordance with the rest of your argument, it shld read:
    Rape is a terrible thing, but you deserve to have your body violated for thinking that you can enjoy the same legal freedoms as your male equivalent in 2015.

  21. Re: Couchsurfing
    On a side note, I am v strongly against the message immediately above this one: anyone has the right to change their mind right up to having sex, however much you may have led them on before, there is an excellent BH 90210 episode teaching this very lesson where the gang go to a party and Kelly nearly gets raped and we learn that it doesn’t matter what happens before, you always have the right to say no.

    I have couchsurfed many many times, and had some absolutely amazing experiences, many good ones and maybe one ok-ish one that was abit awkward at times. However, there are some basic safety guidelines I wld follow, the biggest one being meet in the day/early evening in a cafe/bar where there are plenty of people around, have a drink and chat til you can assess your first impressions enough as to safety and only then go back with them to their house. Get the address off them beforehand and email it to a friend, as well as the promise that you’ll whatsapp on arrival if everything’s good. Carry a mobile with you, with a full battery and call time in the country you’re in and enough money (on a credit card or similar) that you cld book into a hostel if you need to without too many problems.

  22. learn Pepe!! no means NO when ever it is said!
    Perhaps a bad example, but if you are at a dinner party and the host decides your behavior is bad and you must leave, you dont get to eat still just cause you were invited.. .. youve been uninvited! accept! LEAVE

  23. Ruby, this notion of dark alley rape is the problem. It is very rarely in a dark alley, often people you know, aquaintences, friends of friends, family etc. If it isn’t in a ‘dark alley’, people often disregard the assault. A lot of the time only survivors of rape realise this, and then they are often interrogated about what they did to bring this on themselves and how they ‘asked for it’. The culture is slowly changing and men are starting to realise and join the fight against patriarchal dominance and violence against women, but slowly slowly :(

  24. The writer of this thread can you write to me please, it is urgent, I do not know where to contact you. The guy who wrote do not feed the troll it is not the first time every time a woman talks about rape he says it. And Pepe is the name of the man who went to court on CS for sequestration and violence. Why did you erase my participation and left their participations?

  25. I was raped, more than once…no experience of rape is alike, at least not in my case. I envy you the openness and total honesty in which you described your ordeal, I could never go back to these memories, I cannot heal, somehow this has damaged me beyond repair

  26. The exact same thing happened to me in France. I told my boyfriend and he said I deserved and askes for it. I don’t know what to do. I feel like a slut and so ashamed and sad. Its been almost 2 years. The only person I ever told was my boyfriend. It was stupid of me.


    But in her case, CS has deleted this man from the site and he did not fight back by destroying her reputation, so we can say that compare to other women her case has been well treated.

    I met a man trading women in Istabul and I had not been able to leave a negative reference, the site deleted it, and never answered me any mail for 3 months now.

    He reacted by destroying my reputation on the site, and it stayed on the wall for months. It still might be on the group I created Women hosting women in Dubai.

    CS deleted my account after I warned a young Sweedish woman that she could not report a rape in Dubai as she might be jailed for illicit relation when going to the police so to chose well her host.

    I did not tell her to not come but to just be more careful than in another country. A Norvegian woman had been jailed for been raped a few months or even weeks before I posted this observation.

    I feel sad for you Anon. Did you leave a negative reference? I guess not.
    I would not advise any woman to leave a negative reference on the site.

    This man had been able to destroy my reputation saying I was stealing in houses, had a warrant against me. His thread stayed 6 weeks on the Bahrain wall.

    And two months in my group Women hosting women.

    The photos of me, my real name, and CS did not answer me one message.

    I met him with my profile Alda Mihel and in the meantime I received a private message from Caytee suspending me for feminist activism, which is a joke because I was very nice, calm and polite in the middle of the lions.

    I surfed in Dubai and found it safe in 90% of the case but unfortunately you always meet one day the one on 10.

    So you have to be careful. This one on 10 can have positive references and those positive references are the worst weapon he will use against the woman.

    So this man I met, asked me which leg I wanted to have broken, wanted to force me in a sex party, which I refuse, told me that the truck for Irak was waiting for me.

    He of course beat me, and broke my computer in 2.

    I went to my embassy in tears, asking for money to leave the country.

    I contacted a lawyer the day after from Greece. And after I had the confirmation by his girl friend that he was trading women. I got the mail from her with a lot of details the 26th of December.

    I wrote the negative reference the 31 of December, with an account I had to create as I did not have my account being deleted for feminist activism in the meantime.

    This man started to spread defamation against me, the day after all over the site, with CS not moving a finger.

    I did not receive any mail from CS within nearly 3 months.

    So for me it is because in the Middle Est, the people in charge are not the same than the one in Europe. It is an explanation I found. CS answered me that the safety team being given to Concentrix had been a trial period.

    Concentrix is a low cost call center based in Belfast in other country and as well in India.

    In India it is mostly young Indian men, and to have surfed or hosted is not required when being hired by Concentrix for Couchsurfing.

    I had the feeling Caytee was a man based in a country where women’s rights did not really exist.

    Those men on the wall in Dubai were mostly Pakistanese and Indians, and it was as if Caytee was protecting them by deleting me.

    I made an enquiry and found Concentrix and Concentrix India.

    It is still on.

    It is a court case. I guess I could ask for 10 millions USD as the moral damage are so huge.

    This man showed me his police record with 22 cases for violence within 2 years, he does not have the right to approach his ex wife and daughter. His fiance met on Couchsurfing ran at the police station December 2014. She as he told me brought him to court the 9th of December for sequestration and violence.

    For such a heavy case, Couchsurfing did not answer me one mail.
    Left this man spreading this defamation.

    I contacted the police, I have everything, his birthdate, name of his parents, but the police asked me his tc number. Which I do not have.

    If this man made a false statement against me which he told me he did, and told me he was a police indicator, so it means that I can have a problem when crossing the border again but at least I would get this Tc number.

    I will ask for his gardianship because I do not know if he is schizophrenic or if he is really part of the mafia.

    He sent me threatening messages through Couchsurfing saying that he was part of the cartel, that the mafia would take care of me, and he is still on the site. And with the new couchsurfing you cannot flag the message anymore.

    Couchsurfing just did not answer me, and deleted my negative reference.

    His ex girl friend did not leave a negative reference just erased her positive one.

    So I met a man with 20 positive references.

    The last girl who left him a positive reference, I met her, she was drunk, and seemed to want a sex party, I told her I was not interested and that she will have to sleep somewhere else than in this room, as I just arrived from the airport.

    I do not mind people using Couchsurfing for sex parties but everybody has to be Ok for that.

    So a girl happy to have sex with 10 people will leave a positive reference.

    That is the point.

    A lot of hot girls on CS, putting the more conservative ones in danger.

    I surfed in a man place who was living in a beautiful flat in Dubai, and he asked me for the exchange as often. A lot of men on CS think that it is sex in exchange with a sofa.

    So, he asked me for his exchange.

    When I talked about it with a good friend of mine, he answered me, oh you made a lot of fuss for nothing, any girl would open her legs for such a flat, you are not like the others.

    This is as well a big issue.

    Cs is less and less a travel site.

    And other websites called girls traveling, are in fact, girls looking for a sugar daddy, it is a kind of prostitution.

    So this is it. This young woman on this article, has faced what a lot of women on CS face, and she had been in a certain way lucky that CS took seriously her demand and that this man did not accuse her of having stolen things as it is most of the time the case on CS when a woman leaves a negative reference.

    She might have been lucky as well this man did not have 100 positive references.

    After a certain amount of reference, a man is no more attackable.

    Before that I tried to leave a negative reference to a man having 100 positive references and the site deleted my reference right away.

    It took two hours to be deleted.

    When he was using the site as a dating site in a nasty way.

    He was hiding the fact he was married and having a long term relation on the site, and would ask everybody mentioning his girl friend to rewrite their reference, and the thing is was treating women badly, not on a violent level, but on a soul level. He was disconnected. And as he was yoga teacher and veg, so you could give your trust easily. I wrote something nice but saying he was using the site as a dating site not really in a nice way for women. So CS deleted my reference within 2 hours.

    And it is the first time, I thought the safety and support team might be ran by Indian men, because he was Indian. And those men were really having a strong protection.

    It is possible CS is not the same team of people in the Middle Est and in Europe. That for France it is Concentrix Belfast but for the Middle Est it is Concentrix India.

    I would not mind Indian women being in charge but Indian men it is an issue for me, because of the women’s rights in India.

    And Concentrix India seem to be ran by young men. Beside that they are very low paid and not very well treated by Concentrix. A lot of bad report from the people having worked for Concentrix. It is a very low cost Call center.

  28. Hi!!! I just had a Couchsurfing experience in Paris where my host tried to coerce me into having sex. I really think he didn’t know what to do when I stood up to him. He had positive references from women, which makes me wonder what he did with all of them and how consensual it was. When I kept saying no, he brought me a glass of water which I started drinking and then noticed something dissolving in it. I threw everything in my backpack and took off Into the streets at 1230 am. I ended up spending 50 euro on cab fare to go sleep at the airport but at least I was safe.

    A very experienced cs friend is helping me to know what to look for in profiles now. I think cs is wonderful but some people abuse it horribly.

    It was an awful, terrible feeling. I was terrified. Beware of men who only seem to host females and have an escape plan.

  29. Ps – I reported my attacker to Couchsurfing and he was removed within a few hours. The admins do not play with that type of behavior.

  30. I picked up a hitchhiking teenage girl once. It was a driving rainstorm and I felt sorry for her. I felt as I was rescuing her. From the rain. From the heavy traffic – visibility was only a few yards. From hitchhiking. I asked her whether there was somewhere safe and dry where she could call for her parent to come get her. She said she had already called from the friend’s house where she was coming from and her mother refused to come pick her up. So I took her to her home, at least where she said was her home. Never saw or heard from her again.
    I was almost sick over this girl doing something like that. Of course in an ideal world her mother would have picked her up. And girls and women could go anywhere anytime with anyone and not be raped or intimidated into “consenting” to not really wanted sexual activity. We are not there.

  31. Pepe, when a girl or woman is in a vulnerable situation and a man takes advantage of her insecurity, he has committed a breach of trust because she ought to be able to trust a man not to take such advantage of her. He doesn’t have to force her, threaten force or harm, orthreaten to dump her out on the side of the road, kick her out in the night, etc.
    What he does to coerce her or to take advantage of her fears is morally rape even if not legally called rape.
    I suspect that many women marry at least in part to limit being raped (morally, not legally) by one man to avoid being raped by numerous men. She trades sex with one man for the protection of social mores from repetitive sexual advances from many men. In many cases their relationship matures into a good marriage but in many others it doesn’t.

  32. The difference between violent and nonviolent rape is in the mind of the receiver. She might appreciate the advances of one couchsurfing host and not another. She might feel offended if a host doesn’t make an advance toward her. But if she doesn’t want to have intercourse, or engage in one or another kind of sex play, he should back off if a reasonable person in his position would see that she felt uneasy. Why, if he treats her with a little respect, she just might be willing or more than a little willing later, maybe stay over or come back again.
    Any gentleman will slack off with lovemaking if the woman doesn’t seem enthusiastic.

  33. Not only “up to the point of having sex” but during intercourse. Even if he is already ejaculating and she says, “Stop!” or “I thought you were going to pull out,” he can’t stop ejaculating but he can pull out. She shouldn’t do either but she has a legal right to be a cockteaser.

  34. If your boyfriend said something like that you need a different boyfriend. Especially if after a few moments’ reflection he didn’t apologize.
    Women shouldn’t have to pay with uninvited sex for being naïve or even outright stoopid. If she does, she is free to chalk it up to experience and go on, or she can try to make a legal stink about it. The predators who trap for coerced sex need to be curtailed. Why should a couchsurfing host force or coerce sex? Many of the women he hosts will gladly have sex with him. The ones who won’t, well, there’s always another.

  35. Even if it is sex in exchange for a place to sleep, if she won’t pay up/put out, just let it go, guys, and don’t let her mooch off you another night. Back off, let her get a night’s sleep and in the morning send her on her way.
    Women, if you are raped by Muslims in a country that is intimidated by them, don’t expect anything from the police.

  36. That didn’t come out right.
    The diff between nonviolent rape and consensual sex is in the mind of the receiver. The physical act is the same as long as there is no force or injury.

  37. I NEVER want to be hit by a car. Sometimes I want sex. Sometimes I want to cross the road. I think being hit by a car and having unwanted sex are not comparable.

  38. Hello well so I found the court case of this guy, and it is sad. He locked his pregnant wife in her own car when she was 10 months pregnant, and stole all her money for example. He has been condemned to jail many times those last years for threats, hacking facebook accounts, and violence toward women, and other stuff.
    But he is on CS with zero reference, CS deleted my negative reference and deleted me for feminist activism when I tried to warn a woman about some risks in Dubai. It is a sad situation.
    Could you please delete my previous comment as I will start a court case, and as I put my name so too many people come on your link. I have to be more serious and professional now with lawyers and press articles.

    Sorry for that. Much thanks and good luck.

  39. i have to say something,
    just post the negative reference plz,
    even though his revenge may make you unpopular in CS

    but if i were you, i would definitely post it .
    to avoid increasing the new victim!
    do you know why those evil people can rape so many women, because they know women are afraid to expose their raping record and afraid of their revenge!

  40. When I mentionned that it was not really a rape this stupid website deleted my participation like a dictature but when I ask them to delete my last participation they do not answer.
    Stupid people.

  41. À

    This article is a very bad article because it gives the stupid idea that Couchsurfing is safe as this woman is saying that she had been raped when she had been I do not know what

    I have been raped it was not with a cute guy but in the snow with a knife with someone I never met. This article is an insult for the women having real issues on the site.

    I left a polite message saying it was not really a rape and like a dictator they deleted it.

    But now as I have a court case for something really important I asked them to delete my participation as Alda and they do not even answer.

    And they are not even curious to ask me about my own story much more heavy than this pink novel not even interesting.

    I do not know where to contact this journalist to tell her to delete my participation on this stupid article

    Those women are not feminist at all they are brainless not even clever

  42. Rape is sex without consent.

    Most rapes aren’t committed by strangers. Not all rapes involve a weapon.

    I’m truly sorry to hear about your experience, but just because not all rapes seem as horrific as yours (in your opinion) that doesn’t make them “not really rapes.” Your attitude is what is insulting to rape victims, not the article.

  43. Ember I just would like my participation deleted I am asking it and they do not do it it is abusive.
    This girl pretends to be raped. But she found the guy cute and wanted to have sex with him and after changed her mind and slept in his bed. 90% of the people reading this stupidity will think CS is safe as they would never act so stupidly and would just fight or hit the guy and would just get along with it. It is not a rape it is just a stupid girl who does not know to express herself and in front of the justice it would not be a rape as a rape asks to SHOW a clear sign that you do not wish to have sex. She did not even tried to leave the bed. She did not even slap the guy. And she did not go to the police. Now I am starting a court case and I do not wish to have my name is this stupid empty feminist website. They are advertising for CS when women can get really rape or attack on this site and not by cute guys and not when they are in their bed and not by guys with whom they intended to have sex with. This is a brainless woman. And I am asking for my participation to be deleted for weeks now. As I am starting a court case with women having real issues.

  44. Sorry to hear about what happened to you. And I agree with you until the last part of this comment.

    If you think “I don’t want this” but don’t make that clear to the other person, then it’s simply not rape (if that person can reasonably believe they’re okay with it, like if you change your mind in the middle but don’t say so).

    I understand it’ll create the same feeling, and it would be much better if it wouldn’t happen. But the other person thinks you’re both enjoying yourself, and you can’t blame that person just because you didn’t care enough to mention that you changed your mind.

    Sorry for the harsh words, but there’s an enormous difference between someone knowingly abusing you and them believing you’re having a mutually enjoyable experience.

  45. i also think there ist a diference. BUT! especially men should be more conscouis about the womens reactions and behaviour. given the situation that so many times women let things happen even though they don’t really want it, just because of the common belief that this is “normal”! if you really believe the other one is ENJOYING (NOT: “OKAY with”) it, well, but willfully ignoring every single sign of “not wanting” makes it a rape, too. i know this is a tightrope walk but everybody’d just have to listen more to body language!!!!! sorry my english ist not the best ;)

  46. daisy, come on. should i not enjoy life doing things i enjoy just because of all the bad things that can POSSIBLY happen (there are soo many of them!)? should i not cross the road because of having fear being overrunned? i am a member of couchsurfing for 10 years now and i have never had a bad experience. i had a lot of very positive ones instead. and many with “single men”! i am grateful for all these experiences and i am grateful that all of them were positive. as many many others which other people had. i really think it is not very common to happen. through couchsurfing i mean. it’s way worse: it can happen with EVERYBODY instead. it is a society problem. situations like this with people not respecting your NO can happen to everybody and everywhere. should i stop leaving the house now?

  47. Alda, by the way, I totally agree with what you are saying.

    I dont find it cool at all for women to go around thinking of having flings, backing out at the last minute such that the guy gets hurt and continues with his agenda anyway, and then call it rape based on a minor technicality.

    It is this sort of attitude, together with American movies, which is why there is so much harassment in the less developed countries in which I’ve been living (since the men there see all this and believe northwestern women want this sort of thing). It proclaims to these cultures that northwestern women are “easy” and, as I’d told some of these women when living there, it then causes problems for those of us who DON’T share their airbrained values but are trying to live there since we actually love these cultures and share their values.

    Considering a fling does not make a woman cool; it makes her behave like a floozy and sets her up for all kinds of negative situations. It’s a stupid, materialistic and entitled attitude held by some in a very limited part of the world (west Europe and the English countries).

  48. After 2 years, I finally got away from that abusive boyfriend and found someone who,is kind to me:)

  49. Well so since that there are 200 girls who had been robbed in Kuala Lumpur by a Nigerian gang and CS did not move a finger and neither the Nigerian Embassy. And this man with whom I had some issues, had been jailed.
    For myself I was not hosted, I just left a negative reference to someone dangerous for young girls but he was not a host. But when I left the negative reference so CS allowed him to say stupid things about me for five months as a revenge. So I went 3 times to meet the vice consul, and found all his court cases. He had a lot. It went to the Ministry of Forein affairs and as he had some suspended cases so he went to jail after he surrounded by himself. He was used to do this. Harassing people on the net, threats. But it is the same now for this Nigerian gang as CS in Kuala Lumpur should be shut down but they go on an on. It is dangerous. They copied the credit cards, and stole sometimes for 1000 USD cash just for one person. Sad. It is so easy for CS to just shut down a town if it is too dangerous. But well all this to say that it is very dangerous to leave a negative reference on CS. It does not worth the trouble.

  50. Those women will start this court case but I am not part of it. I was just advising and helping but I can see that CS is a wall.
    Well I guess that on CS women are really raped with violence and what I did not like about this article is that it does not seem so bad.But I guess not all women are lucky enough to find the man good looking and to already kiss him and sleep in his bed, thinking of maybe having an affair or maybe not. Some women might think oh it is not that bad.
    As I said it does not concern myself as I did not have any of this problem with CS, I just tried to leave a negative reference to a man who had never been my host or guest.