(hell, yeah) Scarleteen

so very much more at: scarleteen.com
we heart it.

rookiemag:

Relationships Are Work

A beginners’ guide to being a good partner.

Words by Emily, illustrations by Ana.

autostraddle:

New Report Reveals Bisexual Youth Face Specific Challenges — and Need Our Support

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Bisexuals aged 13-17 experience lower levels of happiness, higher rates of alcohol and drug use, and lower levels of social and family acceptance and support than their straight, gay and lesbian peers, according to a new report from the Human Rights Commission in partnership with BiNet USA, Bisexual Resource Center, and Bisexual Organization Project.

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the-courage-to-heal:

Traumatic bonding is a hit with abusers, because it helps him to maintain much-needed control. It helps him keep you where he wants you: tethered to him and his soul-destroying behaviour. But, the bond isn’t as iron-clad as he imagines. Here’s five things he hopes you don’t know about traumatic-bonding, and how to shake off the shackles.

1. What is trauma bonding?

Traumatic-bonding is an intense attachment to your abuser. It happens when you feel emotionally and physically dependent upon a dominant partner – who dishes out abuse and rewards so you believe that he’s all-powerful.

“powerful emotional attachments are seen to develop from two specific features of abusive relationships: power imbalances and intermittent good-bad treatment.”

2. Abusers reward and abuse to maintain power

Your abuser is all about power and control. He (or she) systematically erodes your ability to think and act independently, using a range of manipulative tactics which may include:

physically abusing or intimidating you, gas-lighting you so you doubt our own judgement, isolating you from friends and family that may be able to help, manipulative lies designed to undermine your self-esteem and run you down, making sure that your time, energy and other resources are focussed on solely his needs keeping you continually short of money (financial abuse).

What’s more, most abusers pepper their abuse with ‘rewards for good behaviour’. Maybe you get a thank-you kiss for managing to get his dinner on the table at the right time. Perhaps he takes you out for dinner to make up for last night’s drunken tirade. You may have heard – at least once, and probably repeatedly – that you are the best thing that ever happened to him (when he isn’t labelling you as worthless or making you feel the same way without saying the actual word.) You feel relief, hope, and even happiness – however temporary.

3. Abusers want us to feel dependent

He controls whether you are happy or sad, whether you are safe or in pain, if you are secure and comfortable or lonely and filled with self-loathing. Under this determined conditioning, you may (inaccurately) believe he is stronger than you. While this may make you cleave to him for protection, it also fuels your sense of powerlessness – making it harder to challenge or escape him.

In time, like a baby, you feel dependent upon your abuser for all of your emotional and physical needs. You form a powerful emotional attachment to him, which he doggedly reinforces through a pattern of abuse and reward.

Learning theorists have found that this intermittent reinforcement/punishment pattern develops the strongest of emotional bonds. Particularly intense relationships and extreme abuse forms even stronger feelings of attachment.

This powerful attachment – which arises directly from sustained periods of intermittent abuse and power imbalance – is known as traumatic-bonding.

4. Resisting the bond isn’t easy, but we can break free

Some suggest that the trauma bond triggers biological changes as well as emotional ones. This may cause you to be dependent on the highs and lows of the abuse cycle. Going ‘cold turkey’ seems impossible.

In addition, abusers are difficult to shake off. To get free, you have likely endured physical or emotional assaults including emotional blackmail and hoovering campaigns. These are the abuser’s attempts to maintain control, and they haul repeatedly on the trauma-bond to do it.

Often, you bounce back because – painful though it is to live with an abuser – your sense of self-reliance is utterly eroded and it hurts to battle the emotional attachment to him. I was only able to successfully leave my abuser on the third serious attempt. Many other times I was determined to leave, but didn’t.

5. Time really is a healer

To stay out, I had to fight not only my abuser and his determined hoovering – I also had to fight myself. Many times I wanted to answer his calls. Often, I lay in bed at night, imagining the route I’d drive to get back to him. I could just hop in the car and go! That would stop the ache in my ribs, right? When he came to my door to insist on my return, a part of me cried out to give in each time.

I was exhausted, hypersensitive and anxious – all symptoms of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder. Waves of grief and pangs of longing left me breathless. But, as his hoovering turned to stalking, I listened to my head rather than my heart. Sticking to my Essential To Do list, the trauma-bond weakened with each day that passed. Life got easier. I grew stronger.

Researchers have found that after six months, attachment decreases by about 27 per cent. For those of us struggling with traumatic bonding, time really is a healer.

Remember, “You have nothing to lose but your chains. You have a world to win.”

You are always stronger than your abuser. You have the ability to leave, at any time. Getting out is hard, but not impossible. You can help yourself by recognising that it is not love that’s pulling you back – rather, it’s a powerful emotional attachment that he created as a direct result of his abuse. The avalanche of emotions that you feel are normal. You are not crazy or weak because you feel that tug on the trauma-bond. In time, the bond will weaken – and working on your own recovery can help this process along.

Source: http://avalancheofthesoul.wordpress.com/2014/02/22/what-abusers-hope-we-never-learn-about-trauma-bonding/

(via fatnutritionist)

uglygerm:

I’ve been told this, and have seen this said a million times.
For some reason people think if you like an inch of your body there is no way in the world you can ever be transgender of any sort.
I grew up being told I was gross, ugly, and fat, and I hated myself so much it hurt, and a lot of people would tell me that’s the only reason I choosing to be transgender. But when I started to accept my body, all my stretch marks, scars, and rolls, I was told I couldn’t be transgender because I liked myself.
Even when I came to accept my anatomy I still felt just the same as I did when I hated myself. So that’s just something to share with.

Some folks are really invested in telling other people they “can’t” be trans or aren’t “trans enough” if they don’t feel the right way about bodies or their gender. It’s not anyone else’s place to play Gender Police and tell you that you’re doing it wrong, no matter how you’re feeling.

uglygerm:

I’ve been told this, and have seen this said a million times.

For some reason people think if you like an inch of your body there is no way in the world you can ever be transgender of any sort.

I grew up being told I was gross, ugly, and fat, and I hated myself so much it hurt, and a lot of people would tell me that’s the only reason I choosing to be transgender. But when I started to accept my body, all my stretch marks, scars, and rolls, I was told I couldn’t be transgender because I liked myself.

Even when I came to accept my anatomy I still felt just the same as I did when I hated myself. So that’s just something to share with.

Some folks are really invested in telling other people they “can’t” be trans or aren’t “trans enough” if they don’t feel the right way about bodies or their gender. It’s not anyone else’s place to play Gender Police and tell you that you’re doing it wrong, no matter how you’re feeling.

(via finecomic)

Parents put off or dance around the sex talk for a whole bunch of reasons. The one I hear most often is a variation of “My parents never talked to me about sex and I turned out fine.”

"But I think people forget all the crap they went through before turning out fine," Vernacchio said with a laugh. "My hope is we can raise a generation of people that doesn’t have to go through all the crap."

The wonderful Al Vernacchio, here, whose new book would make a kickass gift for your parents or guardians. :)
chelseapoe:

androfeminine:

"Trans-misogyny is still misogyny" -Sophia

i want that shirt so badly

chelseapoe:

androfeminine:

"Trans-misogyny is still misogyny" -Sophia

i want that shirt so badly

(via killjoyfeminist)

We live in an age where we feel guilt whenever we have to cut someone off but the reality is that some relationships do need to die, some people do need to be unfollowed and defriended. We aren’t meant to be this tethered to the people in our past. The Internet mandates that we don’t burn bridges and keep everyone around like relics but those expectations are unrealistic and unhealthy. Simply put, we don’t need to know what everyone else is up to. We’re allowed to be choosy about who we surround ourselves with online and in real life, even if it might hurt people’s feelings.
Ryan O’Connell, You Don’t Have To Be Friends With Everybody (via larmoyante)

Since it’s Bi Visibility Day (yay!), here’s a Q&A from our archives about being out and visible as bisexual and handling negative reactions, if they come up. Of course we hope that everyone, regardless of orientation, can live free of jerks making inappropriate comments or assumptions, but when such things do happen it can help to have a game plan in place.

bivisibilityday:

HAPPY BI VISIBILITY DAY!
main website - twitter - facebook 

bivisibilityday:

HAPPY BI VISIBILITY DAY!

main website - twitter - facebook 

wertheyouth:

This is such a good campaign

Click through for some sweet and inspirational stories about people accepting and supporting LGBTQ family members. We know that not everyone has that acceptance from friends and family, but it’s great to hear about it when it is happening.

(via finecomic)