Monthly Archives: January 2016

Wait…is that my body?

Body Dysmorphic Disorder is not just for supposedly ‘normal’ sized people. In fact, quite a number of those who are considered overweight by society standards have some form of it – ranging from a minor case to an overwhelming case that leads most often to eating disorders.

I have it as well.  Yes, me…an activist for body positivity and with it, body autonomy (why? because every person who lectures me about obesity, or who does concern trolling are making the assumption that THEY have the right to control my body).

Thankfully, I have a fairly mild version.  I can look in a mirror and see myself as I am, overweight and getting older.  And I can stare at that mirror and admit changes (larger or smaller) to my body.  And I can accept and even love what I see in the mirror.

But, when I look at photographs of me, I see myself as anywhere from 2-4 times as large as I really am.

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Concern Trolling

via 11 Reasons Your ‘Concern’ for Fat People’s Health Isn’t Helping Anyone

Anyone who has grown up obese knows this experience.  Family members, teachers, beloved mentors or just some random stranger on the street decide that they need to give you advice on ‘how not to be fat.’ And if confronted for the behavior, each and every one of those people reply with ‘…but I just want you to be happy and healthy!’ or ‘…but I’m just trying to HELP!’ along with an offended look, like you should be grateful for their comments.  But what most of those people don’t seem to understand is that what they are saying is actually ‘You’re not good enough. And you will NEVER be good enough unless you are…’ some random size or aesthetic.

Let’s go over some of the reasons this article gives: Continue reading

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Life, Love and Expectations

I’m not a big fan of country music, but every once in a while there is a beautiful piece that I could listen to again and again.  This song is one of those.

Songs, for me, are stories.  They have a theme, an idea, that the musician wanted to get across to their listener.  Frankly, that’s the same thing that ANY form of creativity is to me.  It doesn’t matter if it is film, fiction, music, dance, art or any other form of creativity you use to express yourself.  Hell, if mathematics is your art – you’re still using it to express yourself (for someone like me, math isn’t art – but I know people for whom it not only an art form they use to express themselves, but a way to open their minds to everything the Universe has to offer).

The strange thing is, part of why this song hits me so hard is that the story it offers is one I strive for every day.  And it sometimes becomes hard to understand.  For some people, they see me as cynical, jaded or bitter – that I somehow always expect the worst from the rest of the world.  Others see me as loving, compassionate, forgiving and kind, thinking that I am naive and will get hurt repeatedly by expecting the best from people.

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Romance and Love

via This Guy’s Opinion Of Why Men Don’t Like Romance Is Eye-Opening

This article still seems to look at romantic love as a transaction.  And while, yes, it is written from a heterosexual viewpoint, there is a lot about love and romance that has to be more than just a binary or polar set of options with one person on one side and the other on the other end of the spectrum.

Long-term relationships require work on BOTH sides of the relationship. There should be no total passivity on either side, nor total dominance (outside of a clearly defined and contracted BDSM relationship). If one person in the relationship is being carried by the other 100% of the time, then frankly the one doing the carrying needs to leave or risk total emotional annihilation.

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Categories: Christianity, Feminism, Gender Inequities, Relationships | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Even Sex-Positive People….

Look, everyone has insecurities.

Just because someone is body positive, sex positive and fights for the rights of people to be who they are – regardless of anyone else’s hangups about who they are – doesn’t mean that they never feel insecure, ashamed or doubtful about their relationships.

What is different about how those of us who are fighting these fights is that we consider a few basic logical assumptions before we go freak out at someone with whom we have a relationship.

  1. Have we discussed the subject we’re insecure about with the person involved (preferably in a non-attacking/non-blaming way)?
  2. Could there be something going on in the other person’s life that could impact their involvement in whatever subject we’re insecure about?
  3. Is the situation you are insecure about something related to that little voice inside us that constantly criticizes us (i.e. is there something in your head saying you’re bad or wrong)?
  4. Is the issue related to something that makes you feel like an impostor or a fraud?

The questions could (and probably do) go on.

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Fat People Shouldn’t……

“You really shouldn’t wear that mini-skirt. No one wants to look at your fat thighs!”

“You can’t wear that, you’ll look like you’re trying too hard!”

“Never go swimming.  No one wants to look at a whale!”

Do you know exactly what FAT PEOPLE shouldn’t do?

  1. Feel guilty for having fun, looking sexy, or doing whatever they want to do.
  2. Feel ashamed of their body while enjoying themselves doing anything they want to do.
  3. Listen to assholes who can’t figure out how to love themselves, so they’d rather make others feel ashamed, so they dont feel so alone.

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Categories: Body Positivity, Feminism, Sexual Positivity | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Flint, and Justice in Michigan

via Newly released emails cast Flint scandal in a new light

I’ve stated in other places that I believe strongly that most of the crises that have popped up in the last 40-50 years have sadly been little more than a way for politicians to spin-doctor their way into their constituents’ hearts.

And the disaster in Flint, Michigan, is no different.

It was created by corruption, and encouraged by venal, greedy and short-sighted politicians and bureaucrats on every level. Michigan, sadly, has been known for this kind of government for decades. Just like within Wisconsin, the corruption tends to center around the big cities, rarely to their welfare or the welfare of the more rural areas.

And it isn’t only the supposedly conservative side that has been corrupt.

The only thing different about this is that it got to emergency levels and could no longer be hidden in the bottom drawer of the bureaucracy (or worse, shredded in landfills).

Detroit has been dying for decades. Visiting Detroit numerous times in the 90s, I saw how the city was dying. I saw how hard it was for the “have nots” in the city – not just the people of color, but pretty damned much everyone there who wasn’t in the “top tier.” I visited Flint often during that time as well. Given how close it actually is to Detroit, it didn’t surprise me that Flint was dying along side Detroit.

People living in both places repeatedly told me how their government was a leech on the side of the state, how corruption and cronyism was the “expected” way of doing business in Michigan. All of the truth has been there – it’s just been shuffled under the radar as long as they could possibly do so.

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Categories: Feminism, Mental Retraining, Political Opinion | Tags: , , , , , | Leave a comment

Victim Blaming vs. Personal Responsibility

via New York City Council Member Shuts Down Victim Blaming in Two Minutes Flat

I’ve been mulling over this issue in my mind.  I still believe there is a middle ground we’re not looking at here.

Yes, there is something very broken in our culture, when rape and assault is considered a valid choice by a portion of the population.  Whether it is valid due to a narcissistic view of the world (making the victim simply a 2-dimensional character in an individual’s worldview), or because the perpetrator feels there will be no repercussions doesn’t really matter.

But, women aren’t the only victims of rape, assault or any other form of aggression or criminality.

While I agree with the councilwoman when she says: “ Every woman in the city of New York should feel safe, whether they are coming home late at night, early in the morning, coming from a party, or going to work extremely late.”. But I expand the definition.  EVERY PERSON in our culture should be able to feel safe, regardless of gender or race or religious affiliation or lifestyle or sexual orientation.

The reality is, this is not going to happen in our current culture.  Too many people feel justified in acting against anyone else, doing whatever they please to another human being.  It’s not just criminals, though they are a large portion.  It’s the businessman who considers the income of the stockholders is of far more importance than the health or welfare of those who live within a reasonable area of his business.  It’s the average person who considers it justified to ignore when a service person gives them too much change (it may not seem like much to us, but the cashier often gets punished for it, because their drawer doesn’t balance at the end of the day – and if it is too much, they can lose their job over it).  It’s the professional who speeds down a street, ignoring the safety of pedestrians and other drivers, because they have somewhere important to be.  It’s ignoring the fact that our choices have an impact on others.

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Categories: Creativity, Gender Inequities, Mental Retraining | Tags: , , , , , | 3 Comments

Socially Inept – Not Our Problem

hardToGet2First off, please be aware that I am NOT speaking about those who are socially awkward.  More often than not, being socially awkward is a result of quite a number of factors, some of which have to do with the person’s development and security as a child.  Social awkwardness can be trained to be better, but if a person has social anxiety on top of being socially awkward, they have a much harder time of dealing with the rest of humanity.

No, I am speaking directly to those – male or female – who have such a narcissistic view of the world that they felt they had no need to learn courtesy, manners or any other kind of social norm as the Universe somehow revolves around them.  Whether it is because they feel entitled to such worship because of their childhood, or simply because their caregivers (I won’t say parents, because not everyone was raised by their parents) essentially taught them that they were the center of the Universe, like Veruca Salt in Willy Wanka and the Chocolate Factory (old version).

It’s a matter of being intentionally and willfully ignorant.  Worse, some of them actually KNOW the social norms, they only use them if no other option of getting their way works.

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Physical and Mental Health

brain.jpgThere are so many interactions between the brain and the body, we are still finding so many connections between them for so many issues we never realized had a physical component.  Some of it comes from the greater and greater stress we seem to be living with as a daily norm.

As I’ve stated before, mental and emotional abuse also affects the physical body.  When a person is abused mentally and emotionally, there are serious affects on the brain, particularly in the hippocampus (shown to the right – controls and regulates emotion, memory, and the autonomic nervous system).  While this damage is considered supposedly temporary (as in, it will eventually heal itself without further damage if the abuse ends), there is no real identification of the time it will take to heal itself, at least not in any professional peer-reviewed medical article I have been able to access.

Given I know someone with serious physical brain issues (I have no permission to state exactly what is going on with them, nor the person’s exact relationship with me, or even the person’s gender, I am being intentionally vague) from a similar situation, AND I am experiencing my own issues with my brain, I believe I have a valid concern at the potentials of actual brain damage myself.  This other person has other issues that might cause the problem, so I have my own doubts.  But I can’t live with the doubts, so I am making sure I am being tested.

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