“Deciding to ask for help is tantamount to admitting weakness, and if there’s one thing that men are taught over and over again, it’s that Real Men Handle Their Own Shit. Even when we have example after example of fictional tough-guys and bad-asses being willing to open up, admit their fucked-upped-ness and recognize that they need help, there’s still this stigma against saying that you can’t do it alone. We’re supposed to let it all slide off of us as though it doesn’t matter. We minimize the problem because who wants to admit that they’re upset because they’re single? That they can’t “handle some people being mean to them?” Or that they can’t shake this feeling of emptiness or hopelessness or despair?” When It’s Time to Ask for Help – Dr NerdLove
“Probably. That’s all doubtless part of it. But, having gone through what felt like a strangely ritualistic enactment of a statistic I haven’t wanted to believe, I am filled more with questions about the larger implications of men not reading fiction by women than about the causes. If you think that because I’m female what I have to say in my novel won’t interest you, what about the things I say when I am talking to you about the research project in which we’re both engaged? About the funding needed for the public school system? How about when I am arguing a case in court? Filing an insurance claim?
Is it credible that fiction occupies a unique place? Credible that men who dismiss what female storytellers have to say as irrelevant to them, aren’t also inclined to dismiss – albeit unconsciously – what females of every variety have to say? To think it somehow less relevant than what the other men say? Is it credible that this often unexamined aversion is a special case of some kind? A glitch?” Guest Blogger Robin Black: On Learning To Spell Women’s Names While Men Buy My New Book For Their Wives – Read Her Like an Open Book
“When the going gets rough, I often speak to myself silently or softly, using words of compassion to help me feel better. If I feel let down by a friend, I might repeat silently, “I feel hurt by her behavior but I mustn’t blame myself.” If I’m sad about having to miss a gathering, I might whisper soothingly to myself, “It’s hard not to be there when I want so badly to visit with everyone.” When I don’t deny that I feel bad, and even acknowledge it in a self-compassionate way, I’m better able to cope with disappointment and sorrow.” How to Talk to Yourself – Psychology Today
“I had been inducted, apparently, into the growing army of American adults living in chronic pain. I discovered that there are 100 million of us, according to the Institute of Medicine. That was surprise No. 1. Surprise No. 2 was that most of us are women. Nobody really knows why.
There are cultural factors, to be sure. Women are “allowed” to be emotional about their pain, and men often aren’t, so perhaps women’s pain gets noticed more. There are complicated hormonal factors too. There are research biases at work as well, including the absurd fact that most basic neuroscience work on pain pathways is done not only in rats but in male rats. Go figure.
What is clear is that women and men can react so differently to both pain and pain medications that, as the McGill University pain geneticist Jeffrey Mogil only half-jokingly puts it, we may someday have pink pills for women and blue pills for men.” Why Millions of Women Are Living in Chronic Pain – Wall Street Journal
“What we’re looking at here is more than inertia really. It’s not just about getting moving but about the extra effort and patience to overcome negative physiological as well as behavioral patterns. If we can understand that there will likely be a lag time between our mental decisions and our bodies’ progress we’ll be more apt to have patience with our own process. Likewise, we’ll know to front load that process with effort, support and other motivation-boosters. We can create a series of lower threshold goals along the way and choose to value quicker advances and small wins even if they’re not the big results we’re really gunning for. (Those will come, too.)
The tipping point in behavior change, it appears, isn’t scare tactics or additional justification but simple accessibility. Making your process more accessible – easier, clearer, more blatantly simple to follow – can be the best strategy to begin.
Knowing the behavioral and physiological trends in addition to the essential knowing yourself – what cues you’re likely to respond to – will help you establish the routines that will be most effective in your daily life. With time, you brain and body will catch up with your intentions, and you’ll be working with the added bonus of momentum on your new Primal track.” How to Overcome Inertia and Get Yourself Unstuck – Mark’s Daily Apple
“It’s not the mechanics of sex that should be talked about, but how to view erotic media critically – asking questions such as whose idea was this scene? What’s the real life relationship between the actors? Is the dialogue scripted or improvised? How much variety is available in the body types that are depicted, and how do these compare with the bodies we see in every day life? Is there any difference in the way male and female bodies are filmed? Are there any stereotypes or tropes recognisable from advertising, TV or other entertainment media? Who is the presumed or intended audience?” Teaching porn in schools – Pandora Blake
“I struggled with fear of demons my entire childhood. I would lay awake in bed with my eyes clenched shut, afraid that if I opened them I would see a demon at the foot of my bed—demons, after all, could make themselves visible to the human eye if they so chose. I was afraid I would invite a demon to attack me by thinking the wrong thoughts, and fearfully tried to keep my mind away from anything that might seem like an invitation.” When Demons Are Real – Love, Joy, Feminism
“It isn’t credible, she concludes. And the tendency to choose not to listen to women’s stories in print, even when they’re fictional, doesn’t have a lot to do with literary taste — just like the insistence on only watching men’s athletics, when you get down to it, doesn’t have a whole lot to do with the quality of the game, as eschewers of the WNBA so often claim. It’s about trusting women’s words and ideas, and being able to empathize with people who don’t look or live exactly the way you do. It’s about humanity, about recognizing that everyone’s story is important and worth listening to.
We could do that. We could decide, as a culture, that all stories matter, and that a life in which we only listen to the stories told by a tiny slice of society is impoverished and wasted. Or, I guess, we could read A Farewell to Arms yet again.” Why don’t men read books by women? – Feministing
“Notch argued that forcing people to choose between a male and female default would insert decisions about gender into a game “where gender doesn’t even exist.” This might actually be a good argument, if Steve wasn’t obviously male. Notch and the rest of the Mojang team could have created an actually gender neutral character, complete with a gender neutral name. This wouldn’t be that difficult, really. They could name it Casey or Alex or Jordan, do away with the five o’clock shadow, tweak the clothing and hair slightly, and they’d be good to go.” Steve Is a Man: On Minecraft and Gender – Love, Joy, Feminism
“Self-love is about love of your self, and that includes all of your self, all of the time, everywhere you go, because there is never a moment when you are not in your self, even when pretending to be someone else.” selfhood isn’t selfish – Justine Musk
“Let’s face it – everyone has their own definition of shit – what may be my worst nightmare may be just something you do in your day-to-day life.
And that’s the way it should be, because we’re all different. (Judging people based on whether their shit compare to your shit isn’t ok, though).
Having things you can do to deal with the shit helps. It helps us get through situations that really suck, and builds our internal resilience.
So, today I’m sharing things that can buffer situations that suck, and ways to look after yourself in the process.” 10 ways to make doing things that really suck, suck less – That Hummingbird Life
People with Psoriatic Arthritis (PsA) have less diversity in the population of organisms in their gut than healthy people, and they lack particular types of of bacteria: specifically, Akkermansia and Ruminococcus.
I could go on, but I think you get the point. If the authors of the “gluten intolerance is fake” articles had spent even five minutes examining the research, they would have seen numerous papers supporting the existence of non-celiac gluten sensitivity.” When Gluten-Free Is Not a Fad – Chris Kresser
“What came to my mind in this course was the challenges and resistance we have for yoga and some yoga poses. If you have tried yoga you probably know what I´m talking about. I also have resistance even though I have done my daily yoga practice for years and also have been a yoga teacher for years. Some people may think being a teacher, that kind of challenges are gone, but at least for me I´m still learning and discovering things about myself all the time. Thank god for that, life would be very boring otherwise.” Do you find some yoga poses challenging? – Yoga for Endometriosis & Pelvic Pain
“A new study found no connection between hip width and efficient locomotion, and suggests that scientists have long approached the problem in the wrong way. “This idea, that pelvic width for birth and pelvic width for locomotion are connected, is deeply ingrained in this discipline,” said the first author of the study. “Everyone thinks they know this is true…but it’s wrong, and it’s wrong for two reasons. First, the way we had modeled the forces involved didn’t make sense. Second, we found that you can’t predict, from the width of the pelvis, how much energy someone is using, so we’ve been looking at this biomechanical problem entirely wrong.” Evolution of childbirth: Wider hips don’t make locomotion easier, so why is labor so hard? – ScienceDaily
Time for the monthly collection of quick reviews of what I’ve been reading lately. As always linking up with Modern Mrs Darcy.
The Last Time They Met by Anita Shreve: A story in three parts- told in reverse order, of first love, separation, hope and redemption. The Last Time They Met also turned out to be much more serious than I’d first expected, and the ending took me by surprise (won’t give it away though).
Isolation is one of the first red flags in an unhealthy or abusive relationship. According to Patricia Evans, author of The Verbally Abusive Relationship, verbal abuse most commonly takes place behind closed doors.
One of the best examples of this from the film is found in Christian’s “non-disclosure” agreement. This is where he tells Anastasia that she’s not allowed to discuss their relationship with any outsiders, including friends and family.
In addition, we rarely see the couple “out and about” around people. Though there is the odd dinner or roommate encounter, for the most part, they keep to themselves – and they certainly keep their relationship to themselves.
Lie: You need to keep your relationship between you and your partner. It is nobody else’s business or concern what is said or done to you.
Truth: You have the right to discuss the dynamics of your relationship with friends and family, especially within the context of expressing concerns about the nature and health of your relationship.” 50 Shades of Abuse: 10 Signs of Unhealthy Relationships a la Christian Grey – Everyday Feminism
“When a disability isn’t immediately obvious, others — at work, school or even at home — sometimes doubt it exists and accuse those who suffer from invisible conditions of simply angling for special treatment.
Medosch says she’s comfortable being vocal about her disability now because she’s well protected at her current job. She hopes discussing her own experience will help boost understanding, but acknowledges invisible disability can be hard to fathom — especially when so many people who live with it seem, outwardly, at least, to be just like everyone else.” People With ‘Invisible Disabilities’ Fight for Understanding – NPR
“Well, yes. Organizations that serve homeless LGBTQ youth are, by definition, advocating for them. Andreasen apparently understands the plight of LBGTQ youth who are very often homeless precisely because of their sexual orientation or gender identity. The only conclusion one can come to is that Seventh-day Adventist institutions can only support organizations that serve LGBTQ youth as long as they simultaneously condemn their sexuality.” Christian university’s morality prevents them from helping LGBTQ homeless youth – Year Without God
“I don’t think Christian culture deals well with people asserting themselves or their needs or standing apart from the herd. I had to be dealt with swiftly and decisively; I was a threat to the entire hierarchy.
I learned that “You’re selfish” really means “Your lack of self-negation is annoying me,” and it is almost always deployed by someone who thinks he or she is superior against someone thought to be an inferior. It’s often a reminder of the proper social order and an attempt to compel someone to remain in that inferior position.
Nothing about the Christian concept of self-sacrifice is really healthy, taken to extremes (but then, what is?). Over time I saw that people-pleasing looked a lot like codependence and that I was slowly losing myself, drowning in a sea of others’ needs and wants–many conflicting and contradictory, many impossible without hurting myself emotionally or physically. I was expected to lean on “Jesus” to help me meet everybody else’s needs and still somehow scrape through without losing my mind.
But Jesus was nowhere to be found.” I Was a Purple Christian People-Pleaser – Ex-Communications
“What is relevant, then? That Apata is in danger if she goes home. While Bird is intent on arguing that a woman engaged to another woman is insufficiently gay to qualify for asylum, Nigerian law doesn’t care less about a person’s deepest feelings. It’s not being gay that’ll either land you in prison or get you stoned to death. What will? Same-sex sexual activity. Or dressing in a way that doesn’t match with your assigned gender- like, say, in those terribly dapper shirts and bowties that Apata tends to wear.
Apata isn’t at risk because she feels, deep-down, that the people that she falls in love with are women. She’s at risk because of the action of having relationships with women. The action of ironing a shirt for an awards ceremony. The action, even, of working in LGBT activism, volunteering her time for her community. That’s why she had to flee her country, and that’s why she would be in extreme danger if forced to return.” It Doesn’t Matter If She’s Really Gay: How the Home Office got Aderonke Apata all wrong – Consider the Tea Cosy
“It’s interesting that while we were having this discussion about external job titles and descriptions, inside Buffer we were more or less doing away with job titles and descriptions as we became self-managed.
Internally, our titles weren’t important, but the outside world did not have much of a way of knowing that—and titles go a long way when someone is looking to apply for a role.” Why We Removed the Word ‘Hacker’ From Buffer Job Titles – Buffer
“Despite the fact that many people are clearly suffering (and if the research is to be believed, painful sex is a very common occurrence), there is a prevalent notion that there are only two times when it is acceptable to acknowledge pain: as the receptive partner during first-time vaginal intercourse or as the receptive partner during anal penetration. But this idea is flawed on many levels. Not only should those two situations be pain-free, but there are plenty of other causes of pain that need to be acknowledged as well.” Why Don’t We Talk About Painful Sex? – Everyday Feminism
“In a world that tries to convince us – especially those of us with multiple marginalized identities – that we’re not worth taking care of, actively practicing self-compassion is an act of revolution!
Studies show that people who have compassion for themselves are happier, more optimistic, and more grateful than those who are harder on themselves.” The Science of Self-Compassion (And Why We Need More of It) – Everyday Feminism
I came across this memoir randomly, and picked it up because the title and the back of the cover spoke to me. Are You Somebody? by Nuala O’Faolain, with the secondary title “The Accidental Memoir of a Dublin Woman” for the American/international edition, whereas the Irish edition I picked up, it is simply “the life and times of Nuala O’Faolain” – because in Ireland, O’Faolain was a rather well’known columnist for The Irish Times.
From the back:
Given to watching the world – “like a spy behind enemy lines” – Nuala O’Faolain now turns that exceptional sensibility upon her own life in one of the most personal Irish memoirs ever written. One of the nine children of the pioneering social columnist “Terry O’Sullivan” and a romantic, bookish mother, she writes of 1950’s Ireland, her UCD student years, the sexual mores of Dublin in the early 1960s, and the exuberance of Beatles-era Oxford, as well as her years as a university lecturer, and BBC and RTÉ television producer. Always candid, she also touches on some of those affairs of the heart that have coloured her struggle for a sense of self as an Irish woman.
This remarkable memoir is followed by a selection of Nuala O’Faolain’s columns on people, issues and places from The Irish Times over the past decade. Taken together, the heartfelt memoir and equally ardent journalism of Are You Somebody? provide a fascinating portrait of both Ireland and one of its most popular and respected commentators.
While I’ve had a fascination with Ireland (my adopted country of choice) for years, since living here I’ve found myself trying to understand the more recent history that have shaped the country, people and culture here. While no one story can ever give a full picture, many different stories can help you piece together an overview – and O’Faolain’s story is worth getting to know.
Are You Somebody? is a brutally honest memoir, O’Faolain does not idealize her upbringing, the world around her or her own actions, which is something I both admire and really appreciate.
The selection of columns at the end, are also both thought-provoking and gives further insight to both O’Faolain, and Ireland in the late 80’s and early 90’s – a time where the role of the Catholic church is up for debate, sexuality, the after-effects of corporal punishment in schools, sexual harassment, the travelling community, domestic violence, divorce, abortion, atheism, sin, etc.
What have you been reading lately?
As always I invite you to find me and connect with me on Goodreads.
“If you disengage, and engage only on your own terms, the pattern might not change. It won’t necessarily heal your family or “help” your brother, and it won’t make everything whole again. At best it will give you some breathing room. You don’t deserve to be verbally attacked by someone with the passive participation and consent of your other family members. You don’t have to be the sacrificial lamb who makes them all feel benevolent and okay about themselves. If you put a little distance in your sibling relationship in order to take care of yourself and to build a more pleasurable and supportive family structure for yourself, it is not a failure of your empathy.” #637: My insufferable brother is ruining all the time I spend with my family – Captain Awkward
“Because when we give too many fucks, when we choose to give a fuck about everything, then we feel as though we are perpetually entitled to feel comfortable and happy at all times, that’s when life fucks us.” The Subtle Art of Not Giving a Fuck – Mark Manson
““I don’t have one. They’re kind of expensive to use,” John Sylvan told me frankly, of Keurig K-Cups, the single-serve brewing pods that have fundamentally changed the coffee experience in recent years. “Plus it’s not like drip coffee is tough to make.” Which would seem like a pretty banal sentiment, were Sylvan not the inventor of the K-Cup.” How Bad Are K-Cups for the Environment? – The Atlantic
“Every miracle granted means a million miracles denied to others in need. Every single kid with leukemia who miraculously goes into remission means another thousand thousand kids die miserably. One person might crawl from a fiery plane wreck or a collapsed building that slays hundreds; a few might survive a pandemic that lays millions low. Another’s child might suddenly have a life-threatening lung illness reverse course. One person might successfully escape a spree killer or terrorist attack. And every one of these miracles entails, by necessity, the Christian god ignoring or declining all the other requests for his aid.
A Christian who claims that these survivors actually were divinely aided in escape is telling me that the Christian god left all the rest of those victims to it. Sparing one while allowing the rest to perish is not a miracle. It’s a mockery of care and love. Could you look into the eyes of those who did not get miracles and still puff yourself up as the recipient of one, even gloat about it, even use it to try to strong-arm non-believers? Could you be okay with knowing that you survived when they did not? Could you scoop up that money and not wonder if someone else who maybe needed it lost it? I’d like to think I would not accept a miracle under such ghastly terms. But that’s what I wonder, when Christians tell me about miracles: Who isn’t going home with a spouse or parent tonight because you squeaked through that near-miss? Whose kid is dying tonight because your kid got a little divine help for their common disease? I know that those hearing about miracles are not supposed to care or ask about those many faceless millions of others who didn’t get aid; I know that Christians are supposed to just be thankful even one person got help. But I do care about those others. I do ask. I have too much compassion to ignore them. (Are we made in this god’s image–except for compassion?)” The Wearisome Immorality of Miracles – Ex-Communications
“1. Your worldview is egocentric and puts you at the center of all things. This is highly ironic because the opposite is really the case. I see myself as one organism among gazillions on my planet alone, and my planet is only one among, what, trillions? Far from being the center of the universe, most non-theists like myself face a greater challenge in dealing with our own relative insignificance in the vast scheme of things. Contrast this with the narrative that says one single personality created everything that exists, and he happens to care immensely about the littlest detail of your day. He hears everything you say (and think!) and he orchestrates every event in your life to make things go exactly as they should. I don’t know that you could get any more egocentric than that right there.” Ten Things Christians Accidentally Tell Me About Themselves – Godless in Dixie
“Quantopian, a Boston-based trading platform based on crowdsourced algorithms, pitted the performance of Fortune 1000 companies that had women CEOs between 2002 and 2014 against the S&P 500’s performance during that same period. The comparison showed that the 80 women CEOs during those 12 years produced equity returns 226% better than the S&P 500″ Women-led companies perform three times better than the S&P 500 – Fortune
“Still, for as much uncertainty as Lil’ Peanut represents, his name was never a question. My partner and I decided on potential baby names a couple of years ago during one of our talks about our hypothetical family. And although the combination of our son’s first and middle names is a slight variation of that choice, his last name was always going to be a hyphenation of our identities.
But people seem to have a problem with that.
There is no doubt that we live in a world where the expectation is all children will bear the patriarch’s surname. It’s a long-standing tradition, albeit archaic, that my partner and I both adhere to involuntarily. And if you skew that tradition, people will often regard you disapprovingly. They will lecture you about how you are destroying the very fabric of lineage.” Why Does It Bother You That I’m Hyphenating My Son’s Last Name? – Role / Reboot
Beauty & Body Image
“How did she do it? For Eileen, the key was self-compassion. She allows herself to experience each moment but doesn’t judge the emotions that come up when she thinks about her body image. She says it was a tall order when she first started out. After all, it is much easier to have compassion for others than for our selves. However, with time and practice, Eileen has found that compassion for herself has been a very effective healer and helped silence her harsh voice of criticism.” Novel Ways to Create a Pattern Interrupt in Our Cultural Conditioning – Sara Gottfried MD
“So I started working on being more content. That meant accepting a lot of things about myself, learning to appreciate what I have, learning about the concept of “enough” instead of always wanting to do more, be more.
I became happier with the concept of already being enough.” The Futility of Always Pushing Myself to Be More – Zen Habits
“What is it that is so threatening about the idea that your country may not be perfect? What, even, is so threatening about the idea that your country has in the past committed acts of atrocity? Perhaps this is born of the idea that we cannot be loyal to our country if we believe it has any faults, past or present, and that such loyalty is critical. I object to this idea, both because I think being loyal to ideals is more important than being loyal to a government and because I don’t think loyalty has to entail either blind faith or unquestioning disobedience.” If We Can’t Come to Grips With the Past, How Are We to Grapple With the Present? – Love, Joy, Feminism
“Economics tells us that more choice is better. And for most of human existence that has been true.
But research is showing that more choice is not always better. Overflowing email inboxes, 500 television channels and 175 different kinds of salad dressing at the grocery store don’t make life drastically better — it’s paralyzing.” How to Find Happiness in Today’s Hectic World – Barking Up the Wrong Tree
“* When their “miracle” gets discredited, Christians tend to get mad at the person who actually did their work for them rather than examine why they spread a false story around, much less take responsibility for spreading an untrue story!
Miracles are proof of the supernatural–until they get disproven, at which point nobody should be testing a god. The burden of proof is on the Christians insisting that a miracle happened to show that it really was a miracle, but they tend to repeat these stories with the clear expectation that nobody will ever ask them to pony up that proof. It’s almost comical to see how outraged and ruffled they get when their claim is questioned in any way; I suspect based both on my own experience as a Christian and how I see Christians acting nowadays that there’s a social contract in operation here that protects these claims from any examination. If someone rejects a Christian’s miracle claim, then that skeptic is called “close-minded” (because obviously, the best show of open-mindedness is leaping on the first preposterous “explanation” offered for something and refusing to even wonder if there’s some better, more credible explanation for it).
So no, I don’t find miracle claims to be even the slightest bit compelling or credible. I find them to be the exact opposite.” Here Is Why That Miracle Claim Does Not Impress Me – Ex-Communications
“The word “female,” in its primary usage, is an adjective. When you use “female” as a noun, the subject that you’re referring to is erased.
“I talked to a female yesterday.”
A female what? A female kangaroo? A female rock snake? The subject of the sentence is not clear.
“I talked to a female presidential candidate yesterday.”
This sentence is now about a human being.
It should be noted, though, that using “female” as an adjective can take a sexist turn when used in a case that isn’t notable. Referencing a “female firefighter,” for example, is appropriate only when her being female is pertinent to the story; otherwise, she’s just a firefighter. But if you’re talking about the first woman to become a firefighter, saying “the first female firefighter” is acceptable because her gender is relevant.” 6 Reasons You Should Stop Referring to Women as “Females” Right Now – BuzzFeed
“The night winds on, with discussion of rape and the smothering of penises, the sorrows of false accusations and the narcissism of young girls. A sore point for Factory, who has two daughters, who, like young women everywhere, he says, compete for the most exaggerated rape claim. It is, he says, a status thing. When one of his daughters came home one night and said she’d been raped, he said, “Are you fucking kidding me?” Sitting with us, he hikes his voice up to a falsetto in imitation: ” ‘Oh, I just got raped.’ ” He laughs. There’s a moment of silence. A bridge too far? “I told her if she pressed charges, I’d disown her.”
Elam, whose attention has drifted, grins through his beard. “That’s good fathering,” he says.
Factory loves his children. He would have reacted differently if it had been what he in theory considers a legitimate claim, but—”if you don’t have videotape or forensic, a whole lot of bruises, I don’t give a fuck.”” What Kind of Man Joins the Men’s Rights Movement? – GQ
“Women receive only 5-10% of venture capital; they’re seriously underinvested in by Silicon Valley’s angels and institutions. There are urgent and necessary debates in Silicon Valley around objectification, misogyny in the workplace, and how hard it is for women to be leaders without being labeled ‘bossy’. What’s equally clear is that we’re not funding female founders, and billions are being left on the table. There’s been no female equivalent for the meteoric rise to success enjoyed by Mark Zuckerberg, Larry Page, Sergey Brin, or Elon Musk, and right now in the Valley there’s a vicious cycle. Without a success story featuring a woman there’s a strong confirmation bias that women don’t have what it takes. And with no-one investing in women — seeing an opportunity no-one else has and capitalizing on it, which is what investors are supposed to do — it’s unlikely we’ll see one of these stories anytime soon.” Why women are undervalued in Silicon Valley – Fortune
Beauty & Body Image
“The internet hates women who don’t look the way they’re “supposed to.” This is beyond terrible for more reasons than I can state. In short: Internet shamers encourage women to believe that the most important thing for her to be is properly thin and proportioned. Women with children are led to believe this. Young women are led to believe this. Adolescent girls are led to believe this. Self-worth goes out the window. Priorities that actually matter like health and love and goodness and family go out the window. Women of all shapes and sizes become self-scrutinizing, self-hating, self-doubting, terrified, controlling, perfectionistic worriers who are in existential pain all of the time.” The Internet Hates Cellulite and Here’s Why – Paleo for Women
“Rest is essential. But when things get hard and rushed it is the first thing that we give up, that we relinquish – sleep, time off, time together. We give up these necessities all to get work done, to strive towards the joy, the peace the fulfilment we crave.” In Defense of Doing Nothing – Grace Quantock
“And toxic friends aren’t even necessarily total jerks. They might just be people who discourage you, drain your energy, exude limiting, fear-based beliefs, or aren’t interested in self expansion or personal growth. You get to choose the people you surround yourself with.
And reality check:
just because you have history with someone doesn’t mean you need to make them part of your future.” Do you need a friend detox? – Danielle Dowling
“Of course it feels horrible and makes you defensive to open up about something that you probably have your own lifetime of culturally-received stigmas and fears about, and the other person derails the whole thing and erases you and your experience in favor of their perception of you or their need to be an expert. A conversation that starts as “Hey friend, here’s what’s going on with me, I’d like you to know and possibly give me support and encouragement while I deal with this new and confusing thing” turns into an argument where you feel like you’re on trial for your very existence. Not only are your friends not supporting you in dealing with a hard thing, they are making medical facts that affect your daily existence debatable and forcing you to “prove” that this is happening at all. And if you, heaven forbid, “become emotional,” or have less than a perfect grasp of every single part of the science at your fingertips to be presented on demand, in their mind you both a) lose the argument b) start to display some of the negative qualities they associate with your diagnosis. It’s a fucking perfect and insidious double-bind, where, which is it, am I not really (diagnosis), or not logical enough for you because of my (non-existent) diagnosis?” #662 and #663: “My Friend the Skeptic.” – Captain Awkward
“What we don’t talk about when it comes to manliness is simply “learn how to handle your shit”. The problem that many men face is that we’re bad at taking care of ourselves. It’s very rare that men are allowed to give their emotional health priority in their lives. More often than not, we rely on others – primarily women – to attend to our emotional needs. It’s hard enough to even admit we have emotional needs, never mind act on them. We aren’t supposed to complain or acknowledge when shit is going badly for us except via quiet stoic resolve. Admitting to having a problem is tantamount to admitting weakness and invites the traditional game of “You think you have it bad? Stop whining!”
No matter who you are or where you are in your life, sometimes the world goes out of its way to stomp on your metaphorical nuts with giant shitty boots. Maybe you’ve just gotten dumped. Maybe you’ve lost your job. Or perhaps you’ve been slamming your head against the unyielding wall that is your lousy dating life for too long and you can’t take any more. Or sometimes life just fucking sucks and nothing seems like it would go right if you held a gun to its head. But the key to getting through these tough moments isn’t to keep telling yourself “stone don’t cry”. It’s not to keep telling yourself that this isn’t so bad and you’re just a pussy for not being able to take more. It’s to learn how to take care of yourself.” 5 Must-Follow Man Rules – Dr NerdLove
“It took me by surprise when I realized that no matter what my practice has actually looked like over the years, whether I’d been totally diligent or utterly neglectful, there had been one constant the entire time: I’ve always felt like I needed to be the best at meditation. Yep, that’s the phrase that actually popped into my mind, word for word, when I tried to unpack what was going on: the best at meditation.
I know what you’re thinking: What does that even mean? How can you be “the best” at something like meditation?” The Power of Starting Small and Not Needing to be Perfect – Tiny Buddha
“The fight-pickers are not genuinely trying to understand why my morals remain intact without belief in supernatural beings, an afterlife, or Heaven and Hell. They are asking a question that’s not really a question. They are making an assertion that people cannot have morals without believing in a deity of some kind (preferably their own). The facts don’t support this prejudice, but I’ll get to that in a second. First I must point out how insulting this non-question really is to a person like me. When you do this, you are accusing me of being an immoral person. Perhaps you have never stopped to consider that this is what you are doing. Privilege blindness can be a nasty thing, and it’s far too easy to think less of people who don’t deserve it simply because they see things differently from you. If you have observed my behavior and have seen worse behavior from me than you see from people with your own belief system, then please point that out to me. If not, then perhaps you should rethink your assumptions about what makes people “moral.”” How Can Atheists Have Morals? (part one) – Godless in Dixie
1. this is my story
2. this isn’t the story of all Muslims
3. this isn’t the story of all hijabis
4. there can be more than one story
Once upon a time (about 14 years ago), in a land far away (South East England), I wore the hijab. It’s surreal looking back. I’ve spent a long time actively detaching myself from that part of my identity, so I feel almost fraudulent claiming it as my own. Even now, after 14 years of fixing myself up and reclaiming all the bits of me, I struggle to talk face to face with people about the hijab. My experience was bad, and the word and the memories still stick in my throat. This post is about how more than 5 years of forced veiling affected me, and why the recent furore over page 3 reminded me of my stint as a hijabi.” The hijab (and page 3) – Reimagining My Reality
“Using “female” in this way is contrary to how we generally communicate. As noted above, “female” as a noun erases the subject—making “female” the subject of the sentence. In the most technical sense, it’s correct, but by employing this word that is usually an adjective as a noun, you’re reducing her whole personhood to the confines of that adjective. It’s calling someone “a white” instead of a white person, “a black” instead of a black person, and so on.
“When you refer to a woman as a female, you’re ignoring the fact that she is a female human,” write Nigatu and Clayton, pointing out the connotation that follows: “It reduces a woman to her reproductive parts and abilities.” The focus shifts away from the personal and onto onto her qualities as an object—qualities that have, historically, not been used in the best interest of women.” The Problem With Calling Women ‘Females’ – Jezebel
“Jessica Valenti is one of the most successful and visible feminists of her generation. As a columnist for the Guardian, her face regularly appears on the site’s front page. She has written five books, one of which was adapted into a documentary, since founding the blog Feministing.com. She gives speeches all over the country. And she tells me that, because of the nonstop harassment that feminist writers face online, if she could start over, she might prefer to be completely anonymous. “I don’t know that I would do it under my real name,” she says she tells young women who are interested in writing about feminism. It’s “not just the physical safety concerns but the emotional ramifications” of constant, round-the-clock abuse.” Feminist writers are so besieged by online abuse that some have begun to retire – The Washington Post
“The group we refer to as “women,” Arquette seemed to fail to notice, includes gay people and people of color, who tend to be worse off economically than white women. Women as a whole make 78 cents to a man’s dollar. But when you break it down by race, a Latina woman makes just 54 cents to every dollar a white man makes. A black woman makes 59 cents. And despite Arquette’s phrasing, women (and many men) of color have been on the front lines of feminist, womanist, and other movements for women’s rights for centuries. The people Arquette asks “to fight for us now” are already here, fighting for themselves — and all women.” Patricia Arquette Gives Rousing Speech for Gender Equality, Quickly Goes Off the Rails – Cosmopolitan
“I had reached the point where I had simply had enough of working in an industry that pretends to support women while it bombards them with impossible images of perfection day after day, undermining their self-confidence, their health and hard-earned cash.
My decision to quit was partly precipitated by the failure of a campaign I started a year ago to encourage magazines, designers and advertisers to use models with more realistic, representative body images. Then I could not have anticipated the extraordinarily hostile reaction to my fairly innocuous suggestions from fellow editors and designers. A year later I have come to realise the sheer terrorism of the fashion industry and accept that, alone, I cannot change things.
But in spring last year I was full of optimism that we could change. I believed wholeheartedly that we could stop magazines and advertisers using underweight girls as fashion icons. I had already banned diets and slimming advice from our pages but after meeting Gisele, the Brazilian supermodel credited with bringing ‘curves to the catwalk’, and discovering that she is a tiny size 8, I decided to challenge the status quo.” What I think about the fashion world – Daily Mail
“Like our thighs, hips, and stomachs, skin conditions are stigmatized by a culture that demands perfection. The bumps and redness caused by skin conditions like acne, psoriasis, and eczema become imperfections, and are therefore deemed “undesirable.” People who have these conditions often seen as ugly are made to feel ashamed of what occurs naturally to tens of thousands of Americans a year.” Authentically loving my skin… marks and all – Adios Barbie
I realized that I’m reading much less fiction than I used to. 5-6 years ago about 75% of my books were fiction – these days it’s rather the other way around. I think it might partly be because I don’t have as much time to just get lost in a book, as I used to – might have to work on bringing in a bit more fiction.
Chocolat by Joanne Harriss (currently $4.30 on Kindle): I’d watched the movie years ago, but the book was even better than expected. I love the break with expectations, and the focus on doing what’s right for you – setting people free to live the lives of their choosing.
Are You Somebody?: The Accidental Memoir of a Dublin Woman by Nuala O’Faolain (currently $5.38 on Kindle): I came across this, and it turned out to be a wonderfully, fascinating, thought-provoking and brutally honest view into the life of a Dublin woman. O’Faolain grew up in virtual poverty, but ended up becoming one of the more famous columnists in Ireland – I heartily recommend it, for an unusual view into an unusual woman, as well as an insight into Irish history and mentality.
“In my opinion, we do an enormous “let them eat cake” disservice to our community when we obfuscate the circumstances that help us write, publish and in some way succeed. I can’t claim the wealth of the first author (not even close); nor do I have the connections of the second. I don’t have their fame either. But I do have a huge advantage over the writer who is living paycheck to paycheck, or lonely and isolated, or dealing with a medical condition, or working a full-time job.” “Sponsored” by my husband: Why it’s a problem that writers never talk about where their money comes from – Salon
“Over time, ideally, we learn empathy. Empathy is the ability to understand that other people are just as real as we are, to understand that other people have needs and desires, and to be able to imagine what it is like to put ourselves in someone else’s shoes and see things from their perspective. As we grow up, it becomes natural to most of us, but only to a certain point. Most people never become really good at it. We empathize with people we like, or people who are part of our group. We don’t empathize with people we don’t like.
Compassion is the ability to put ourselves in someone else’s shoes, imagine things from their perspective, and then to feel kindness for them and seek understanding of them even if what they do is harmful to us, goes against our needs and desires, is at odds with our own experience, or hurts other people. Compassion is empathy on steroids. It’s the ability to understand the view and perspective of someone we don’t like, or someone who is doing something we think is bad.” Compassion – More Than Two
“Second of all, if you really want to insist on establishing a connection between the crime rate of an area and its religiousness, I don’t think you’re going to like what you find out. Those states which consistently score the highest on religious devotion also suffer the highest crime rates in the country. If prayer stopped crime then that wouldn’t be the case. But people around me have somehow gotten drilled into their heads that there is a direct correlation to school shootings and “taking God out of school.” My response to that is: If your God can be “taken out” of a place, he’s not very powerful. Maybe you should find a bigger God. Besides, shootings happen in churches, too. Were they praying incorrectly? Did God disapprove of their particular preacher and therefore remove his protection from them? It seems to me you have to eventually decide that this facile connection between public prayer and crime isn’t what you think it is. It’s mentally lazy and it lacks any statistical verification or causal connection whatsoever.” Say It Ain’t Poe: When Fake Letters Say Exactly What Too Many Christians Think – Ex-Communications
“1) You’re telling her you don’t value her perspective, or at least that yours is more important than hers. You do realize she thinks you’re talking to yourself when you pray, right? Or have you even stopped to think about it long enough to realize that’s how an atheist would see prayer? People who don’t believe in invisible spirits generally don’t think prayer does anything except make people feel better. They see it like a security blanket or a stuffed animal that you sleep with. It doesn’t actually protect you from anything, but it makes you feel secure anyway. And yes, I know that’s not what you believe, but does it matter to you that the other person doesn’t see it that way? Have you ever considered that announcing to her that you’re praying for her is essentially dismissing her perspective as unworthy of acknowledgment?” What’s Wroong with Telling an Atheist You’ll Pray for Her? – Godless in Dixie
“You see, men are incapable of addressing the “root of the problem” until women take a drastic “illegitimate counter-reactions”—like creating a mosque for themselves in which men are neither expected, nor made explicitly welcome. And then, suddenly confronted with the possibility of a complementary space in which they do not control women (just wait, that’s coming up next in his little speech) and in which women in fact govern themselves from positions of leadership in their religious practices, without giving a toss about what men think or have to say, well—come on now, girls—maybe we can work something out after all.” Snake in the Grass – the fatal feminist
“Revenge porn terrorism compels women to fear those they love. It isolates men and women and places them in opposition of one another. It infuses every interaction between a man and a woman with an imbalanced power dynamic by robbing a woman of control over her own fate and placing it in the hands of another. It doesn’t matter that not every man would exploit this weapon. It matters that any man can. The number of women I know who have been threatened by a partner, a husband, a boyfriend with the images they produced together in an environment of love and respect are innumerable.
We have become accustomed to the use of revenge porn terrorism. As a matter of course, revenge porn is now the go-to threat for any man seeking to destroy a woman. For any man seeking to extort a woman for sex. To destroy the reputation of his ex-wife. To wield power in divorce proceedings or business negotiations. To ensure that an abused partner won’t leave. And the terrorist doesn’t even have to go through with it. The threat is sufficient to silence her and force her into submission because the consequences are so grave. The perfect weapon.
And it’s working. Women are being hard-wired to associate fear with intimacy. Terrorism has led us to scan the room for hidden cameras rather than look into our lover’s eyes. Terrorism has made us afraid to take pictures of our bodies and to explore our own sexuality in safety. But wherein lies the power of this threat? A bomb and a bullet threaten one’s physical safety and sense of security, but what power, what truth, lies behind my naked body? Judges, doctors, politicians, movie stars, the popular girl in school; no matter her success or contribution, show us her breasts and it is all for naught. It places an enormous amount of power in the hands of weak men. The power not only to destroy everything she has built, but to do so with legal impunity.” Revenge Porn Terrorism – Reut Amit – Huffington Post
“This is the sad reality in workplaces around the world: Women help more but benefit less from it. In keeping with deeply heldgender stereotypes, we expect men to be ambitious and results-oriented, and women to be nurturing and communal. When a man offers to help, we shower him with praise and rewards. But when a woman helps, we feel less indebted. She’s communal, right? She wants to be a team player. The reverse is also true. When a woman declines to help a colleague, people like her less and her career suffers. But when a man says no, he faces no backlash. A man who doesn’t help is “busy”; a woman is “selfish.”” Sheryl Sandberg and Adam Grant on Women Doing ‘Office Housework’ – NY Times
“Let’s talk for a minute about embodied cognition. I love embodied cognition, and I think you should too because it’s utterly different from the typical ways that we think and speak about minds and bodies, but also appears to have a fair amount of evidence supporting it. Embodied cognition is the idea that our brains and thoughts aren’t simply housed in our bodies, in many ways they are completely dependent on bodies. Our bodies not only influence the way we think, but sometimes changes in the body can completely change how we think. Andrew Wilson and Sabrina Golonka define it as follows: “Embodiment is the surprisingly radical hypothesis that the brain is not the sole cognitive resource we have available to us to solve problems. Our bodies and their perceptually guided motions through the world do much of the work required to achieve our goals, replacing the need for complex internal mental representations.” One great example is this study that found people who needed to pee, who were hungry, or were tired were less likely to believe in free will.” Yes We Should Talk About Bodies – Skepchick
“In this brief example, I think my bro-ness largely contributed to my ability to reach my male privileged residents. The ideologies that my corporeality signified gave me a presumed rapport with them, allowing me to infiltrate their spaces, thus granting me the perfect opportunity to subvert those ideologies from the inside. To broaden the implications because of what my body signifies, I can go back home to Philly and be on the block spittin’ some bell hooks or Sara Ahmed to other Black dudes and be listened to because of the capital that I carry through my embodiment. Thus my bro-ness, while inimical in, say, a space containing older, white, second wave feminist women, is subversive and anti-patriarchal in a space containing Black Nationalists and hip-hop heads in North Philly precisely because I am granted access to that space.” COLLEGE FEMINISMS: Buff, Black, Tattooed, and Feminist: On the Utility of a Bro-Feminist – The Feminist Wire
“It goes like something this: we are taught as a society that IF we achieve the ideal body that we see in traditional media (and not before) we will then obtain love, worthiness, success and ultimately- happiness. Which is what we all want, right?
Because the vast majority of our culture buys into this, we have millions upon millions of people investing everything they have into achieving this ultimate goal. The goal being- thinness which obviously equals happiness, remember? (Note: other body “goals” also apply here, like able bodied/lighter skin color/cisgender appearance etc.) SO, they spend their lives in a perpetual state of self-loathing (its called inspiration!) while working their asses off to become that ideal. We, as Americans, sink billions of dollars into beauty products every year. Between the millions of us on diets, we gift the weight loss industry and other weight loss products over $60 billion dollars as well. 14 million of us had cosmetic procedures in 2012 and yes, that number keeps growing. Perhaps we starve ourselves or maybe we just fixate on our calorie count like it determines our salvation. Maybe we make the gym our god. Whatever we choose individually, we as a country have made ‘fixing our bodies’ our main obsession and we let it consume our life. This happens for most of us whether we choose to acknowledge it or not. We live to give the quest towards impossible perfection (marketed as happiness) our all.
So THEN after all of this, when a fat chick- who hasn’t done the work, who hasn’t tried to fix her body, who doesn’t have any interest in the gospel we so zealously believe in, stands up and says: I’M HAPPY! …we freak the fuck out.
Because: that bitch just broke the rules. She just cut in front of us in line. She just unwittingly ripped us off. And she essentially made our lifetime of work totally meaningless.
It’s kind of like investing everything you own in some sort of stock and instead of it’s worth increasing, you’re notified that it’s value is now the same as Monopoly money. All of a sudden, your investments (aka “Body Currency”) have the devastating value of: zero.” WHY PEOPLE HATE TESS MUNSTER (AND OTHER HAPPY FAT PEOPLE) – The Militant Baker