From Cybele

give me a real choice

Think about it like this. If you’re a woman think about the biggest practical problem in your life. If you’re not a woman think about the biggest problems women you know have. Maybe you have some kind of a mental issue you need help with, you’re a perfectionist. Or you’re pathologically passive and let people walk all over you. Maybe you’re a single mom and you’re having trouble watching/raising your kids and holding down a job to feed them. Maybe you’re in a dysfunctional relationship with a parent, a spouse, lover, friend. Is your boss an asshole to you or are they lazy and undirected? Maybe you’re fat and you always wanted to run fast but you can’t find a decent bra. You can’t find the time or courage to do things you want to. Your house is a mess. Every woman has problems like these. Some of our practical problems are just trying to avoid injustice and physical violence on a day to day basis. Some of our practical problems have to do with money and socioeconomic concerns. Some of them concern split ends and hangnails. They’re all valid problems.

Now think about how easily you can solve these problems. If you have a health problem like a physical disability or diabetes or chronic pain etc how easy is it for you to get to the doctor, convince the doctor you have an actual health issue, get medication, get physical therapy and whatever else you need to lead a somewhat normal life?

If you have a mental problem how easy is it for you to get talk therapy, CBT, DBT, access to prescribing psychiatrists that you need? How easy is it to get time off from work when you’re not well?

If you’re homeless how easy is it for you to get settled in a home?

If you’re a mom how easy is it for you to get trustworthy, kind appropriate childcare, time to rest, prenatal care, food for your children, decent schooling?

If you’re fat how easy it for you to get yourself anywhere without someone making a comment about your body, what you should eat and why you’re fat? How easy is it to find clothes and undergarments and chairs that fit you?

If you’re a child how easy is it for you to get help if your parents/guardians are abusing their power over you?

If you’re an adolescent how easy is it for you to get information and support about your concerns for the future, your sexuality/reproduction, your social life and anything else that is bothering you?

There are a million other questions like this because we all have different needs and there is a veritable rainbow of kinds of women. Really think about how easy it is to get these solutions to women’s problems.

After you’ve really truly and deeply thought about those things I want you to think about some different things you might get instead:

How easy is it for you to get porn?

How easy is it for you to get lipstick?

How easy is it for you to get a thong?

I’m not everyone and I’m pretending to be. But I can get those 3 things really easily for <$10. The first two I don’t even have to drive anywhere to get, I can get them from the gas station within walking distance from my house. If it’s easier for you to get the solutions to your most pressing problems than it is for you to get lipstick, God bless you.

If I give a homeless woman $5 she’s nowhere near getting safe housing. To get a house you need thousands of dollars, a steady job, references and good credit. You need time to fight with banks, realtors and owners. But she can take a bus to the Dollar General and buy a few thongs for empowerment/self-care/job-opportunity  purposes. There is absolutely no barrier to entry for sexualization… every body is up for grabs.

So my question is why is it so easy for me, as a woman, to get porn and lipstick and so hard for me to get solutions to my actual problems? Why are the accoutrement of female sexualization so cheap and accessible, but help for a mom is so fucking complicated and expensive? Why is it okay for a woman to be unhealthy, sick, insomniac, suicidal, chain smoker as long as she’s thin (read:sexy!!!) but if she was all of those things and additionally fat (read:ugly) then suddenly it’s a national public health problem?

What if there was a place within walking distance from my house where I could get a running bra or birth control or therapy or nonviolent crisis assistance for <$10?

That would be a lot closer to freedom than my current sexualized “freedom.”

That’s all I’m saying.

 

 

 

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From Cybele

goodbye

I have to go because the people I like and admire, we can’t be friends. They think ill of me and I don’t blame them. In order for things to be safe, people like me have to go. That’s ok. I’m fine playing Rorschach making everyone hate me. When you’re hated, the bitterness and fear become very worth it, because you are railing for a reason.

Safe spaces aren’t safe when I’m in them. I’m old school damaged by old school things. I don’t want toys or self-care makeovers and bathbombs. I want to walk down the street and for men to leave me alone. I want to bring a girl into a world where being pretty and fuckable is literally not a thing. Like if you showed her all the accoutrements of womaninity she’d not understand it. If you told her she “deserved to feel beautiful” she’d ask innocently why feeling beautiful is necessary or desirable.

That makes people cry because the new feminism is just choosing to like being pretty and fuckable, opening fuckability to every class of woman so disabled, fat and elderly women can enjoy the privilege of sexualization. And I am genuinely sorry that it repulses me, that I find it vile. I’m sorry that this new feminism just reinforces everything that hurts me, that it has no room for me, the woman with no gender in her brain, just shoved in every hole.

Obviously if I were to do anything politically constructive, what I would construct would conflict with that of other women my age and class… we want different worlds. We conceive of liberation in opposite ways: they want more glittery pink choices rooted in sexism/genderism while I want the cliché patriarch’s boot off my throat. I don’t want his plastic and hollow choices no matter how abundant they are.

Hauswife or whore. Vanilla or kink. Butch or femme. Modest covered devout religious girl or sexy uncovered liberated atheist girl. Red lipstick or pink. Twerking or ballet. Bikini or burqua. Lady in the streets or freak in the sheets. Curvy or fit. I want him to leave me alone and leave other women alone. But if men left women alone there would be no “men.” This horrible dominating sexualized way men treat women is the basis of gender.

I don’t want gender in or around me because it is psychosocially and politically violent. The new feminism has loaded it with the poison of neoliberalism. Class analysis now is transphobic and taboo. Everyone bounces around in their personal identity bubble flippant of any group consequence. Every day a new gender is created to mask the destructiveness of their parents: the male and female genders and their hierarchical relations. These are things that cannot be spoken of in serious feminist spaces. In fact no serious discussion happens in feminist spaces it’s either insisting everyone must like Beyoncé or finding the TERF.

I tried my best, sorry to whoever I hurt/pissed off/irritated/disappointed.

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Poetry

Navel Gazing 1

I still don’t know if I should express myself or not. It seems like a stupid question but is expressing oneself allowed? A selfie, a poem that doesn’t exactly rhyme, a harrowing personal essay… is it okay? Perhaps everything has already been expressed so new expressions are superfluous. Or is it that it’s better, less arrogant to document others… excepting that of course one cannot express first person experience for another. Can Shakespeare, Chaucer and Milton stand in for me? I’m still not sure. Maybe dear Juliet had more to say that was left unsaid. Are the nymphs peeking around the stage curtain, uncertain? May they speak or are they only objects of rape and other misfortunes? I still don’t know, honestly. What if all there is to feel and do and become is bound up in the canonical heroes? Then no more poems and stories are needed. I don’t know.

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Autobiography

It takes a village to fix a broken child

How much healthcare does it take to make a functional human being from the masticated, foul and oozing remains of a beaten child?

5 different MDs for migraines and neck pain:

3 PCPs

1 sports medicine doc

1 neurologist (very excited to see her next month)

1 dentist

1 oral surgeon

1 optometrist

3 physical therapists

2 gynecologists for untreated adolescent menstrual disorders

Also 2 NPs who were awful

1 pelvic physical therapist to help me relax my pelvic floor

For mental damage:

*to order the medications that keep me from killing myself*

1 psychiatrist & 1 PhD level NP

*to reorganize my mind so I no longer want to kill myself*

5 different therapists (LPCCs with master’s degrees) AT LEAST

Number of daily medications: 6

How many of them are psychoactive: 3

How many times I’ve had to explain I no longer take pain medication because it doesn’t work in non-lethal liver exploding does: 857

How many years of treatment: 6

Grams of industrial strength laxative I take because my pelvis will not relax long enough for me to poop: 17

How many trips to the emergency room for pain: 4

How many ultrasounds: 2

How many hours wasted treating psychosomatic symptoms

that are completely unnecessary: COUNTLESS

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Poetry

dont tell anyone

it wouldnt be fair to whoever had to clean up the mess

drive me to a shelter where my howls would be part of the greater howl

and a sweethearted volunteer could pet me and tell me it’ll be alright

through sea spray tears in the bad room no dog wants to enter

i live my dreams and my dreams strike fear

i hurt during the night and when i wake up

im alone and inside out

but im still here because it wouldnt be fair to whoever had to clean up the mess

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