I woke up this morning to learn a male friend is a secret abuser, and that he disclosed a history of committing sexual assault privately, to someone he thought wouldn’t warn others. Nearly the exact same thing happened thirteen months ago with a different man. I haven’t made new male friends in that time, but this dark horse escaped my scrutiny.
We’ve been internet friends for years. He’s been mostly kind to me, while being inappropriate to my friends in private messages. I believe the woman who reported his disclosure of abuse, not least because she had screenshots. Just like last year.
Based on last year’s man and his own history of whiny behavior, I can already predict his next actions. He’s currently in the hiding phase , with social media accounts suspended. He’ll come back with a long winded, self serving statement that seeks to minimize the rape he committed and draw attention to his own negative feelings, in a bid to have them mollified.
Then he’ll block everyone who still thinks he’s behaved atrociously, so that he can begin the cycle anew. He will look for new women to befriend and flirt at, to apologize to as he continues to harm. He’s already moving to a new university, so sleeping with his student last year is less likely to follow him. He’ll have all new students to exploit!
I’m bitter and glib, but above all heartbroken. And weary. The sense of “Again??” about all this is not a terrific way to start my day. I don’t want it to be true, but I absolutely believe that it is. Because this secretive behavior is an extension of his less appropriate public behavior, because the constant apologies on his page never result in improved conduct, because it’s happened before.
As warning signs to myself and others, here are a few things the two men had in common, besides being rapists and disclosing that fact.
- very few male friends, lots of women
- scattershot flirting
- soliciting nudes
- running from mild criticism
- hosting public discussion of sensitive topics with little to no moderation of comments
- private messages with many women
The two men are Phoenix Drake (fake name) also known as Kyle Sopko (real name) and Dan Linford (real name) and if they didn’t want me to say all this, they should have never pretended to be friends with a victim like me. Neither disclosed too me. Neither warned me. Both acted entitled to my friendship despite their status as rapists.
I don’t WANT rapists for friends. If you are one, now would be a great time to never interact with me or any of my friends again. I won’t keep quiet once I know. If that scares you, good.