SOCIAL PRESSURE

This post by @kasadilla11 gave me an idea I would like to float. While I intended to leave this blog as a static resource, the latest episode suggests The CW is not aware that part of its consumer base is extremely dissatisfied with their product. 

Would there be interest in a more formal, organized letter writing project, wherein people could email me their letters, and I would print them out and send them en masse to The CW? Perhaps with a deadline near the end of May, before new scripts for S3 (hopefully) will be proposed? 

You know, I do not miss being a teenager at all. Having people tell you that it’s suppose to be the best time of your life while forbidding you from doing anything. Plus how everything seemed to be so major due to the lack of experience to compare it to and the underdevelopment of the prefrontal cortex for emotional regulation (finishes around age 25). Being a teenager sucked.

Your twenties isn’t much better because of all the social pressure to have certain things done by a certain age that you will drive yourself to the brink of insanity.

That’s why I love my thirties. Yes, I have responsibilities. But I don’t let them consume me, and I can just be myself because I just don’t give a fuck anymore.

Run away from the false illusions that society has created. Protect your own beliefs and values from being pressured into conforming with them.

When they warn you about peer pressure in school they tell you about drugs and alcohol; they tell you about people offering you weed or beer and telling you ‘all the cool kids are doing it’. They talk about peer pressure like it is obvious and so easy to spot that you can joke about it when it arises among your friends. 

What they don’t tell you is how it can be a subtle and consistent othering. What they don’t tell you is that ‘no thanks’ is never the end of it. What they don’t tell you is that its not always about drugs or alcohol. 

No lesson on the dangers of peer pressure includes the feeling of ‘outsideness’.  They never teach you about the self-consciousness when all of your friends are drinking and laughing and gently teasing you about being the ‘parent’. It’s not always a forceful pressure and they don’t always mean to press on you. but even the strongest stone can be carved away by drop after drop of water. 

No one warned me about the peer pressure that comes with being the only one who doesn’t have a crush. No one warned me about feeling ashamed and anxious about being the only one who had never been in a relationship. No one warned me how being a virgin and feeling kind of grossed out by the idea of sex would make knots in my stomach when I talked about the ‘top ten celebrities I’d do’ at sleepovers. 

No one warned me about the peer pressure that comes when a friend in my social group had a crush on me. No one warned me how uncomfortable I would be with it, or how much my friends would tease me about never having a boyfriend, or tell me now was my chance, or exclude me from group dates. No one warned me that my friends would tell me I was heartless for not giving them a chance, or they wouldn’t speak to me again if I didn’t date them because it was cruel for me to not to give them a chance when we were friends and they were into me. 

When they warn you about peer pressure no one warns you that you can be cornered into doing things you aren’t comfortable with or don’t want to do by people you trust and it doesn’t always have to do with ‘what the cool kids are doing’ it can be as subtle as being different because in school being different is pressure enough. 

anyway i, a mentally ill adhd'er, got my driver’s license today at 22 years old after 6+ years of driving being one of my biggest fears in the known universe. i was 100% convinced i was going to fail and i didn’t. so that’s pretty chill

Figure of Speech

Every time I speak, I interrupt.
Whenever I get the nerve, I fail
and the general flow I disrupt.
So I recoil, becoming pale.

I should shut up, nothing to add,
Apologizing again and again.
Didn’t mean to make you mad.
I’ll make sure to stay in my brain.

I’m more comfortable in the background
It seems like people are hard to reach,
Maybe I just shouldn’t be found.
Maybe I’m a terrible figure of speech.

Some illusions that society has created are far from the truth. You don’t need the newest car or fanciest jacket to be the best. Food is not okay to just chuck in the trash. Clean water is not the least bit disposable. Run away from these illusions, and protect your own beliefs.

I’ve seen a lot of people lately implying or outright stating that our activism should focus only on ourselves, and that any issue that also impacts straight people isn’t our business. I disagree. There are a number of issues that aren’t directly related to our identities but nevertheless have an outsize impact on our community.

Strict gender roles. Youth homelessness. AIDS. Stigma against non-standard relationship structures. Incomplete sex education. Social pressure to enter into an m/f marriage. Invalidation of bodily autonomy for minors and the disabled.

Sometimes straight people do work on these issues, but their results are often only useful for the privileged. Expensive HIV medication doesn’t do much for trans women in poverty, and homeless shelters run by straight people are often unsafe for our youth.

I believe that focusing on community-specific efforts to the point where broader problems go unaddressed is counterproductive, and we should instead be looking for common ground with other groups in order to create solutions that work for everyone.

Things I Stopped Doing:
  1. Consciously (and unconsciously) trying to accommodate privileged groups.
  2. Trying to make White people feel more comfortable. This includes being sure not to use ebonics, being overly courteous, saying excuse me first.
  3. Shrinking myself in public as to not offend, especially in the presence of White people and/or men.
  4. Holding the door open for White people (mind you, I hold the door for EVERYBODY).
  5. Worrying about any of my behaviors that may fit a stereotype.
  6. Moving out of the way for men. They can move out MY way.
  7. Smiling when I really don’t feel like it.
  8. Disciplining my son in public. We–Black people–often over-discipline our children in order accommodate White people. Well, I’m not doing it. Their kids run amok in every damn store. My son is autistic and has ADHD. If anyone deserves to run around, it’s him.
I’m sure there’s more and that I’ll think of it, but if you care to add to this, feel free.
you don't have to earn the right to like things

It’s ok to like things. In particular, it’s ok to like stories, and it’s ok to talk about liking them. It’s also ok to write things like headcanons, fanfic, and happy rants about how awesome your favorite character is.


Every story is problematic in some way; that’s not necessarily the most important thing about a story. Which things are and are not dealbreaking is deeply personal.


You don’t have to earn the right to like things. In particular, you don’t have to listen to endless commentary about how the thing you like is actually terrible. You don’t have to talk about it actually being terrible every time you mention the thing.

It’s important to be considerate of others and not try to pressure others into liking the thing you like. Just as it’s ok for you to like it, it’s ok for other people to find the problems dealbreaking.


It’s ok to like something. It’s ok not to. It’s not ok to be a jerk about it.

youtube

“Admit it, Jon,” Schaal says. “Women will never be able to relax about their bodies the way that men can.”