7-Year-Old Lena Dunham Wasn’t A Child Molester, But Adult Lena Is A Boundary-Crossing Creep

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Am I the only one who is confused at how a one-year-old had the manual dexterity to give herself a pebble pessary? I’m much more disturbed, though, by Dunham’s mother’s reaction. A seven-year-old is old enough to understand when you tell her, NO, her little sister’s body is her own and not for you to poke and explore.

But apparently, learning that other people have boundaries and, indeed, personal thoughts and worlds of their own, is something Dunham never learned, because by writing about this now, as someone who is supposed to be an adult, she’s re-victimizing her sister. This isn’t exactly new for her, as she also outed Grace to their parents before Grace was ready, and it’s not surprising behavior on the part of someone who has previously described Grace as an ‘extension’ of herself. Grace, for her part, doesn’t seem thrilled with the situation either, saying in the same interview with After Ellen:

Without getting into specifics, most of our fights have revolved around my feeling like Lena took her approach to her own personal life and made my personal life her property.

Now, a spoiler alert: I, and probably 90% of people who have an opinion about this, have not actually read the book. Spoiler #2: I also don’t especially care for Dunham, who, though she has sometimes been unfairly treated by media sources, also represents many of the things about white, sex-positive feminism that trouble me. But I also think it’s worth acknowledging that this story was first picked up in a seriously scuzzy right-wing article by Kevin D. Williamson for (barf) National Review, that basically compared Dunham’s interactions with her sister to that of the man who raped her, and to basically blame her for ruining that man’s life. This story originated as a misogynist attack against Dunham, and whatever Dunham has done wrong here, let’s not forget to leave a finger or two pointing in Williamson’s creepy direction.

lena dunham tweets(via)

You cannot equate the actions of a seven-year-old child to an adult rapist: that is, frankly, obscene. But you also can’t hand-wave away Dunham’s childhood behavior, and you absolutely cannot justify the decision she made as an adult to publicly discuss this history in a way that once again crossed her sister’s boundaries. This is not okay. There is nothing about this that is on the same planet as ‘okay’.

And as for the people who are out to unequivocally support Dunham as a feminist hero despite her not very feminist disregard for the personal autonomy of others, well, someone else said it much better than I could:

stella boonshoft lena dunham tweet(via)

(Photo: Stuart C. Wilson/Getty)

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