Relationships

Social Justice as Abuse

The phrase ‘social justice’ is often invoked to describe lofty principles individuals and institutions are expected to follow. But what happens when people misuse the power of these ideas?

This fascinating article details seven ways social justice language can become abusive in intimate relationships:

It kind of feels like this author was stretching for length, but they do present an interesting angle.

We all know people are amazing at rationalizing our actions. Those who are most passionate about social justice causes are often those with their own trauma. It makes sense that sensitive souls might use their interpersonal defenses to shield themselves in a weak moment.

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Life is Weird, But I’m Not Giving Up!

It’s been a quiet few weeks here at BrazenShe. I have a bunch of stuff in the pipeline, but I have been focusing my free time on a business venture.

Applied Learning

Running BrazenShe is rudimentary and fun. I write whatever I want, whenever I want. It’s great practice at crafting engaging pieces around maybe less-than-engaging issues.

I adore writing in my own voice. It’s just about the most fun a girl could have. I have developed and tweaked my style for almost 30 years. But I don’t exactly fit your boilerplate professional mold.

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Is Fear of Abandonment the Root of Narcissism?

The similarity is unmistakable – Narcissistic people, who appear grandiose but are actually cripplingly insecure, tend to follow a cycle in relationships.

While reading about the Fear of Abandonment I was struck by how they are essentially the same reaction. The main difference is that the Narcissistic Cycle dominates a person’s relationships.

Idealize – The beginning is beautiful, often called ‘Love-Bombing.’ Their partner is the most perfect person to ever live.

This is a hard one because it mimics normal infatuation. In the early stages of romantic love, people are notoriously rose-colored in their estimation of their crush. Much ink has been spilled, thousands of songs written and enough films for a weeklong festival. It’s cruel because this phase can actually be terrifying for people who have been involved with emotional vampires before.

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What is Family? What is Love?

These are the questions that keep me up at night.

I was doing alright ignoring them until a few days ago. My sister Quinn, my only sibling from childhood, sent me a novella about why she didn’t want to talk to me anymore. She immediately blocked me.

Was there some kind of argument?

I sent her a link to my post about Donald Trump’s mental problems, because she doesn’t like him either and I thought she might appreciate it. She said it was terrifying, and she was “tired of being afraid all the time.”

Afraid of what?

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The Nothing is Spreading: Millennials’ Company in Misery

 

By now, everyone has heard about the depressed blue-collar White Guy. His jobs have dried up, the mainstream is leaving him behind, and he’s paranoid about signs he’s becoming a minority.

People have blamed this demographic for the Alt-Right, electing Trump, and for generally being a cesspool of simmering privilege. The consensus seems to be they are upset because they are entitled. The world doesn’t revolve around old white men anymore, and they need to adjust.

New data challenges this stereotype. The American Journal of Public Health released analysis of a longitudinal study they started in 1995. Visiting with the participants five times over 20 years, they interviewed them about things like drinking and drug use.

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Adulting: Fighting The Don’t Wanna

They say having kids around keeps you young. Conversely, I actually find that having kids makes me feel older, but usually in a good way.

Growing Up Is Hard To Do

Into my 20s I was still waiting for the day I would grow into my life like a new pair of shoes. Extended adolescence is a thing, and everyone I knew seemed afflicted. My generation was going in many directions and none of them were toward stability.

Then I unexpectedly became a parent. Conscience demanded that I drag my hungover ass to the park every day, make real dinner and read baby books over and over. Sometimes Fake It Till You Make It is your only option.

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Whither the Boys?

When women run the world, what will we do with those pesky males?

I have encountered several different angles on the question of being a Feminist while still pursuing less radical womanly things. Especially parenting.

I read an entire essay about how one woman dislikes males so much she can’t understand why any woman would have a son.

She said it’s misguided to tell women we can counteract the patriarchal culture that tells boys they are entitled. That a mother’s love goes unappreciated and just lays the foundation of their entitlement.

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Readings: The Sociopath Next Door

Last time our Readings took us to some pretty deep places in the Freudian unconscious. This time we’re looking at behavior that is in front of our faces every day.

I’m not the first to write an article inspired by Dr. Martha Stout’s superb book The Sociopath Next Door. It is riveting and filled with educational details. Dr. Stout employs narrative to draw characters who illustrate points from the easily digestible lists the book is populated with.

After drawing her terms, we meet Skip and Doreen. Skip’s last name is probably Skakel. Doreen has ensconced herself as a doctor in a mental hospital with no real credentials. They both use the power of their position to abuse and intimidate people below them.

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Casual Sexism In Heartland America

Hubs and I have been taking the kids to an Episcopal church. I’m even less religious than he is but in a small town it’s about the only way to get to know anyone.

The Episcopalians are nice. They preach a lot about being accepting of differences and emphasize the eternal life part over the hellfire part. They are a small but friendly bunch.

Somehow. everyone there seems to be over 50 or under 20, but I’ve almost gotten used to that (where is everybody, anyway?)

There’s nothing much in the services I relate to. Plenty of familiar faulty arguments and false dichotomies. Then last week they opened with a reading of Proverbs 31:10-31:

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Tripping The Fright Craptastic Pt. 5: Mommie’s Dearest Things

This is the final installment of my Summer Of Hell series. Thanks to everyone for reading, your support has meant my world to me these past few months.

Not sure why, but this one is the hardest. There's no heroics or heartwarming lessons. Just some cathartic shit I need to get off my chest.

Read on, if you dare. 

If life were a movie, this trip would have been one of those reunions where people get together under less-than-ideal circumstances but pull it together in the end. It’s a difficult experience but it bonds them in their shared adversity.

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My Favorite Fantasy Is A Straightforward Conversation

Hubs was up through the wee hours writing a paper. He finally went to bed a while before noon, saying as he passed, “Read it if you want to. And if you want to change the ending, by all means. I was rushed.”

I understood him to mean that he wanted me to look at it, perhaps edit it, despite his phrasing making it sound voluntary. I do this so much it’s usually automatic. This mode of speech is common and I figure it’s a politeness thing. Nobody wants to look like they’re demanding things of people.

I do it myself. I might say to the 12-year-old, “Why don’t you go ahead and pick up your room?”

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Feminism In Action: How to Spot A Bad Boyfriend

[I’m writing from a straight lady’s perspective, but most of the things that make a relationship suck can come from men or women.]

Hubby and I had a little rough patch recently. We’re both stressed and tired and started nipping at each other. But we never stopped talking, and we managed to tough it out. After about a week we found our way back to baseline, a little stronger for the struggle.

This is still a new experience for me. At the beginning of our relationship, I had to fight back terror that every little imperfection was the beginning of the end! It’s funny how moving on makes you think back on things, and I got to comparing what works with this relationship that didn’t in past ones.

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