Wednesday, December 23, 2015

The input The Mighty asked for but has given no indication of wanting

The Mighty thinks they want a conversation. Now. After being called out literally from day one about their problematic ableism and centering of the same voices we always hear and inspiration porn.

 Okay. So. Here's the deal, The Mighty.

You've set off some fucking BEAUTIFUL PTSD because you can't even step in & say "not all coping mechanisms are ok, actually". I mean, you should really have someone catching "huh, this actually isn't ok to say about people who aren't yourself, especially not publicly" but then you wouldn't have content. That's the majority of your content.

 But by following that line, by not drawing a line (and yes, you DO need to do so explicitly, and you need to enforce it on your social media presence and on your blog, both comments and submissions) you are saying to disabled people, MANY of whom are abuse survivors that since it was done by parents and caregivers it was ok.

 That is the space you are holding. A safe space for abusers. That doesn't mean you are all abusers, so let go of your pearls. You asked for my input now actually listen. Prove me wrong. I think you're disingenuous as hell, & I'm almost never wrong. Be the exception.

You need to promote disabled authors, assuming there are any left who will work with you. Particularly multiply marginalized authors. And you need to PAY THEM. Not just the feel good inspiration porn saccharine crap. You are all "well that's real though" when parents use your site to humiliate their kids. Why is it not "well that's real though" when we're raw and honest with you?

 I want an actual answer but, again, I don't have any illusions here, if you cared to stop fucking up you would have done so long ago.

 The moment for the conversation is well before the castle is on fire, kids, & you're running to the innermost keep.

Spaces that are doing it right? Are spaces that make your primary demographic (paaaaaarents, face it. You cater to paaaaaarents. Not people who happen to have produced a child with a disability. Parents who act like their child is an imposition done at them because the world hates them, woe unto them) sad pants. That reflects badly on the culture you promote.

What's fucking hilarious? You've repeatedly refused to even read things I've written (including the thing literally everyone wants to reprint). But if you knew me in my Secret Identity as a gymnastics coach & judge, former gymnast, dancer, martial artist, and archer you'd wet yourself trying to write up what an "inspiration" I am. I'm not a person to you either way (isn't this lack of illusion and lies refreshing?) but you'd be looking to dehumanize me the other way.

Your formula is transparent. You should be embarrassed.

You need to reach out to radical people even though they make you sad. YOU need to grow here. We have been yelling at the brick wall that is you for ages. Now you need to cleanse.

Or you can, like, dismantle. Or at least be HONEST and label yourself as The Central Repository of Inspiration Porn and Martyr Parent Stories.

But this is NOT in my name, and you pretending it is is insulting.

I don't think you are sincere & I don't think you'll respond to this, or any of the other criticism in a meaningful way. Prove me wrong.


Incidentally, this post is a $500 value at my typical rates at your billing scheme. Rates are calculated based on number of words, number of times I had to go back and delete because people can't cope with people not kissing their ass, how big a pain in the ass the client is, how presumptuous they are, and how disingenuous I think they are. I know you won't pay me, but just thought you should know how much you're demanding for free.

Thursday, December 17, 2015

survivors matter more than abusers. behave accordingly.

Today would have been my dead mother's 57th birthday (oops! 59th! Clearly I'm mostly fine since I no longer exactly remember) if she hadn't loved cigarettes more than anything else (her words). I'm actually fine. But damn are people full of terrible things to say to people who've gone no contact with parents.

I see the sympathy when I talk about my parents. I hear you say the platitudes. In theory, all the right words (not necessarily the right words for me, but the words a book would tell you are the right ones). You get uncomfortable because you should. But then comes the part where you start screwing up. Then come the 'buts'.

"But you'll miss her when she's dead."
"But she was doing her best."
"Honor your father and mother."
"Well maybe your stepdad was abusing her too, have some sympathy."
"You may not regret cutting her off now, but you will."
"What if someone felt they needed to cut you off for their safety? Would that be fair?"
"She's your mother."

These are at best misguided awkward things people who want everything to be peachy and shiny say. At worst they are intentional barbs. But they are not the right thing to say.

No, I don't miss her. I am profoundly relieved. I don't care if she was doing her best--if that was her best it wasn't good enough. If I am "doing my best" and drop a kid on their head, it wasn't good enough, but a lifetime subscription to Nightmare of the Week Club from the C-PTSD guild needs to be forgiven because of genetics? No.

Don't preach the bible at me because it is not my book & you will not get me to allow abusers to be close to me because of a supernatural being I don't believe in & wouldn't worship if that's what it wanted. I don't care if my stepdad was abusing her too, displacement isn't the answer. Owning your shit is. If someone cuts me out, okay that's fine, it isn't about fair, it's about people need to be able to do what they need to do. It doesn't matter that she's my mother because she's also an abuser & utterly unsafe.

So. Don't say these things to people who have cut parents out of their lives. We've heard them before. I will cheerily, and I do mean with a big grin, tell you to go fuck your sanctimonious self & go about my day, because I am at that place. Not everyone is.

These statements are gas lighting survivors about our self knowledge to keep ourselves safe. This is, again, an area in which I can tell you to fuck off. But other people? It could send them to months of nightmares. It could set off yet another cycle of "trying to get along with mom--mom is a piece of shit--get too beaten down to extricate". You could be guilting someone into spending a holiday with someone who wants to, has tried to, and may succeed at killing them.

Don't think about our abusers' feelings before you opine. Think about ours. Think about how we are probably downplaying it to you. Think about how we are the person you are saying it to. We have been the wronged party, and often had that twisted and turned by people who think us having boundaries is wronging them. We are taught that self preservation is wronging people.

Think about that. Don't undermine survivors' hard-won safety mechanisms. If you can't help yourself, you need to go be not around survivors because you, too, are not safe. And need to fuck off.