blaming-the-victim

“No one can make you feel inferior without your consent.”

I like this quote. I connect with it.

“But this quote is victim blaming!” you cry. “It allows others to treat you badly because you consent to it!”

Not to me. To me, it’s a mantra of strength. “I am not inferior,” I tell myself when there’s doubt. “I am not a victim. No one can place their control over me. My mind is my own, and my mind is saying ‘no.’”

No one can make me feel inferior without my consent. Whenever I am afraid, I remind myself this: I am equal. I am equal. And so I tilt my chin up and meet the world as an equal.

No one can make me feel inferior without my consent. Never again.

theangerislight replied to your post: I know you don’t hate Tim, but there’s a lot of…

I personally think Tim’s character would be more interesting I he was ever held responsible for the stuff that does. It’d be nice to see his reaction. But usually everything he does is handwaved or lauded or passed over.

He would be, yes, and when things like this happen, the meta response by fans who notice does look disproportionate maybe because other readers just take what canon responds with at face value. 

Characters who aren’t called out within the text, if and when noticed by fandom, get a correction in meta and discussion that maybe seems excessive because people are annoyed at both the portrayal and the text itself for glossing over it and treating it as positive or not a problem.

It’s like Jason’s victim blaming. Canon material has all these characters blame Jason for his death, which is both incorrect and disgusting in response to the murder of a child. Some people passively accept what canon presents and continue to blame Jason and think of him as the Bad Robin, while others push back against the portrayal. Then it becomes, ‘these characters canonically blame a child for his own murder, that’s disgusting’ and you have to negotiate from there how much to put on the characters themselves and how much is DC just pushing an agenda. 

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One dead, 10 injured, suspect arrested after van drives into pedestrians leaving London mosque

  • An incident involving a white van that plowed into pedestrians near a mosque in north London early Monday morning is now being investigated as an act of terrorism, London Metropolitan Police Commissioner Cressida Dick said in a statement.
  • One man has died and at least 10 people have been injured in connection to the attack, the BBC reported. 
  • One suspect — a 48-year-old man whose identity has not yet been released — has been arrested on suspicion of attempted murder. Read more (6/19/17 9 AM)

‘Daily Mail’, other media outlets criticized for victim-blaming Muslims for Finsbury Park attack

  • On Sunday night, a white van rammed into pedestrians leaving London’s Finsbury Park Mosque after “taraweeh,” or nightly Ramadan prayers. 
  • Media outlets began reporting on the incident as more details emerged.
  • In some publications, like the Daily Mail Online, reporters went so far as to link the attack on the mosque with a radical cleric who used to preach there. Read more (6/19/17)

it’s time to shut down the lie that children who don’t grow up being hit, humiliated, and scared into obedience will grow up into spoiled, entitled, selfish monsters. there is zero truth to that. children grown in a healthy and nurturing environment will get a chance to grow up healthy. children who are raised by monsters who try to pretend that abuse is for the child’s sake and that the child would become a monster if not abused will be stripped of their health and will be denied an actual start in life and will be forced to fight for survival. I’ve had enough of abusers pretending they’re helping the child while they’re just taking and taking more and more away from them and leaving them permanently traumatized and emotionally injured. Don’t let them get away with it.

abusers are afraid of the world where they’re not able to abuse to freely, they’re afraid of the world where their abuse will be called out and condemned, where there will be consequences for their actions, where others will see what they’re doing and stand on the victim’s side, where they’re considered weak, disgusting, hateful and a burden on society they know they are. 

that’s why they’re trying to normalize abuse, trying to convince everyone victims deserved it for being “weak” or a list of other bullshit reasons. they’re scared of being recognized for who they are. they’re scared of being discovered. they’re scared of having to look themselves in the mirror and admit to what they’ve done. they’re scared of what they have to pay.

call their shit out. every single time. 

People arguing that the poor shouldn’t have kids and that benefits should be cut from kids in families with “too many kids” are being super obvious that they don’t think of poor people as fully human.  And also that they’re into genocide (it’s not like we live in a world where poverty, deprivation, and lack of access to resources is evenly distributed across all racial/ethnic groups and we all fucking know that).

Rights like being able to have a family, to raise children, to continue our families and cultures are basic parts of human rights that people should be able to choose to engage in (or not, if that’s their preference, but they shouldn’t be coerced not to).

Banning someone from having kids or starting a family or coercing them not to is an incredibly cruel thing to do to someone.  And that’s what people are doing when they suggest poor people shouldn’t have kids.  Rich people and classist assholes act like the choice is between having kids in poverty or having kids not in poverty and that’s just not how things go in reality.  Most people born in poverty will remain in poverty or close to it.  The choice to have kids and start a family outside of poverty is one denied to most people.

And don’t concern troll about the welfare of poor kids if you’re trying to cut their food, housing, education, etc. and if you see them as garbage drains on society.  Concern for poor children is totally fucking unrelated to ruling class desires to control poor people and to victim blame poor people for poverty.

Poor people having kids isn’t what creates poverty, poverty is the result of systematic exploitation and a fucked up inhumane system.  Kids born to the poor are as valuable and human as any other child, and poor people have as much rights to things like having a family as any other human being.

I really don’t think Paige really loves Emily, it always feels like a competition when she’s around Emily. We know she has an abusive competitive past:

Those are just examples of her abusive competitive past. but when she’s around Emily she seems to care more about Alison than Emily.

It’s like

Emily: Hey

Paige: Okay, so Alison is a BULLY!! she needs to go to jail!!

Those are all from season 1-4, but even her recent behavior is terrible. Who in their right mind blames someone for having a mentally ill and an abusive con husband? She’s doing everything she can to get Emily to hate Alison and she’s been doing this for YEARS. It’s sad and embarrassing. 

besides her victim blaming, she’s also known for being obsessive and a stalker. Paily fans like to hate on Alison for being an adult with a bitchy attitude, but guess what, she’s a pregnant, hormonal, jealous women. I’d like to see Paily fans find an excuse for her stalking Emily or do they only have selective memory?

on top of all that, she gets a job at Rosewood High School as an athletic supervisor, something that didn’t exist until Paige got there..

Now, I don’t think Paige is trying to get close to Emily because she loves her, but because she’s working with AD. The picture below (credit: broswatchplltoo) shows AD/AD’s helper with hair exactly like Paige’s hair and I’m sure it’s not a wig because Jenna’s blind.

I came on Tumblr, saw a post that aggravated me and decided to make this so it wasn’t planned and is probably all over the place but hopefully it’s understandable 

I think privilege of all types is best described as assuming that everyone has the ability to make the same choices that you made, and ignoring the fact that for some people those options don’t even exist.

“Why didn’t she just tell him no and push him away? As a man, I have the physical strength and inherent social respect from other men to expect to be safe at all times, I’m sure she would have gotten the exact same response as I would have if she had done what I would have done.”

“Why didn’t he just go to college? As a student in an affluent neighborhood, I had access to AP classes, extra-curriculars, and guidance counselors who helped me apply to schools, I’m sure he did, too.”

“Why didn’t he just comply with the police? He wouldn’t have been shot if he did everything right. As a white person, I’m given the benefit of the doubt by authority figures and not immediately pre-judged as a violent criminal because of my appearance, I’m sure those cops were afraid of him because he chose to be scary, not because of racism.”

“Why does she always take the elevator? It’s only one flight of stairs! As an able-bodied person, I’m capable of doing physical activities without fear of hurting myself or exacerbating health problems, and anyone who doesn’t have an immediately visible reason for doing less than I do must be lazy.”

Haven Craft’s Tips for Beginner Witches, Part One

Tips for Beginner Witches

Let’s start with this – I am not the witch Pope. I cannot speak for the witchcraft community as a whole; only for my own tradition.

5 Things I Believe Beginner Witches Should Ask Themselves

Note that the answers to these things will change, but that a firm grasp of the answers at any point in your practice may be helpful to you. I recommend actually writing your answers down, and every now and again check back and see if your stance has shifted.

1. Is magick real?

If yes, then what do you mean when you say, “Magick is real”. (Do you mean that you can effect reality with your will, intent, and energy? Do you mean like, Harry Potter real? What will disappoint you to realize might not be probable? What will inspire you to realize you can accomplish?)

2. Where are your lines? (What do you firmly believe is true/false, right/wrong? Violence, doing harm, controlling others, etc. Would you punch someone if they threatened a friend? Would you curse someone if they threatened a friend? What would you do, if your coven head told you it was right but you felt it was wrong?)

3. What are you looking for in a magickal path? (Pro Tip – no one has all the answers and there is no one right way.)

4. What are you prepared to do in order to accomplish your goals? (How many spoons do you have to give this practice? Can you devote one night a week, are you going to randomly pick stuff up on Tumblr, are you going to leave society to pursue your studies under a waterfall, etc.)


I recommend that no one make any oaths or vows in their first year of practice. Get to know yourself, how you feel about magick, and what you actually want to do before you do any big commitments. (Historic anecdote – this is what the original year and a day was for.) More strident, but still personal, recommendation: if someone tries to get you to oath to them within your first week of being a witch, run.


Things People Should Tell Beginner Witches, But Often Don’t

1. Don’t be afraid to change your mind.

2. Don’t throw good energy after bad by continuing to do something that isn’t right for you.

3. Don’t be afraid to continue your education, even if that means learning something that was right for you before is no longer right for you.

4. There is no one right way to do this. There is no Witch Pope - there is no dogmatic enforcement of the path to being a witch.

5. There are absolutely as many assholes in Paganism and witchcraft as there are anywhere else. Don’t think that these people are all spiritually enlightened beings who mean you well and who will give good advice.

6. Yahoo Answers is not your friend. You have the internet – which has access to both all of human information and all of human misinformation. Look for credible sources. Anything that seems too easy or too good to be true probably is. Work on critical thinking.

7. Try Scholar.Google.Com over “this article says so on Patheos.com.” Seriously, recently an article on there claimed Friday the 13th was a sacred holiday in goddess centered pre-Christian Paganism before the patriarchy ruined it. There is no historical validation for that, but a bunch of witches reblogged it. (Things you learn from scholarly sources rather than the latest poorly edited Llewellyn mess: the Burning Times didn’t happen, different kinds of Pagans warred amongst themselves long before Christianity came onto the scene, there was no great unified Pagan religion before Christianity, and Gerald Gardner was probably lying about almost everything he said.)


You Should Probably Learn the Difference Between Paganism, Wicca, and Witchcraft

What is Paganism?

Pagan is an umbrella term for a member of a religious, spiritual, or cultural community, other than those of the main world religions, so:

Non-Abrahamic – it is not Christian, Catholic, Jewish, Muslim, or Mormon

Non-Eastern – it is not Buddhism, Hinduism, Taoism, Sufism, or Sikhism

Theistic – The belief in some kind of divine power, which is sometimes polytheistic (a belief in more than one god), but not always

Some Pagans practice witchcraft – others do not.

This definition isn’t quite right, though it’s in hugely common usage, because there are Abrahamic and Eastern persons who consider themselves Pagan. Keep in mind that there will be exceptions to this definition and that those exceptions are valid.

There are also secular Pagans, so it isn’t even always Theistic. I know – it’s complicated. Though this is the largely accepted Academic definition, it doesn’t really work when applied to the real world, if you’re considering someone saying, “I’m Pagan” as a self-identifying definition, which I do. 

Wicca

Wicca is a religion. Most people consider Wicca as falling under the Paganism umbrella, although not all Pagans are Wiccan. Not all Wiccans are witches, and not all witches are Wiccan.

Wiccan is generally defined as:

Dualistic – There is a God and a Goddess

Pacifistic – Wicca has a rede that requires Wiccan do no harm to themselves or others, though not all Wiccans (such as those who follow Doreen Valiente’s suggested guidelines) are Pacifistic, so there are definitely exceptions to this

Earth-based – Having a respect for and acknowledgment of the powers of the Earth

Witchcraft

The spiritual or secular art, craft, and/or practice of the witch, defined many ways by many different people.

A witch is a witch who says they are one.

Again, there is no witch Pope and no witchy excommunication because you define yourself as a witch differently than someone else does.

Yes, male identifying and/or presenting persons can be witches.


Pagan and Witch Fallacies

There are certain ideas that most beginners in the witchcraft community will encounter over and over again. I’m going to run down some things – with the reminder, again, that I can only speak for my personal tradition.

1. “You should remove all negative influences from your life! You should purge all negative feelings! Be positive all the time!” Not everything that is negative is bad. Not everything negative can be avoided – we can’t all just quit our jobs and live in a witch shack in the mountains. We have to endure negative things, both because it is healthier to experience the full range of human emotion rather than to ignore a large chunk of it, and because it isn’t possible. What we should do is stop victim blaming witches who are going through hard times and stop telling witches they can’t be angry when they encounter something that should be angering.

2. “But, tradition!” Just because an affluent white guy in the 1400-1600s said something, doesn’t mean you should do it. We don’t follow their medicinal advice anymore; we don’t have to follow their magickal advice either. Seriously, I don’t care if tradition says a trans woman shouldn’t be in a sky clad ritual – that’s bullshit. We don’t put leeches on our bodies anymore – let’s leave the past nonsense where it belongs.

3. “We have to make sure everyone feels included and welcome!” Not if they abuse the welcome of others, we do not. The problem with making some people feel included and welcome is that you make their victims feel excluded and unwelcome because you’ve made them unsafe.

4. “We have to support each other and love each other and be a positive force in people’s lives.” Okay, yes, in small doses, this is a great aim. It doesn’t work for everyone (some witches are spite and malice fueled and they are still witches), but okay, it’s a nice idea. Until it becomes ableist or demands free emotional labor from people, which it often does.

5. “We have to educate them!” Okay, it’s great that there is this effort in the community to educate others. But if you don’t have the spoons or if it seems like they’re using the demand for their own education as a way to still have access to a community they are abusing, then no, you have no obligation to put their education over your well being. None. They have access to Google (even if they have to go to a library to use it.)

6. “You have to earn your right to be a witch.” No, no you don’t. Seriously, though, from whom? Dusty white men in graves? A Llewellyn author who couldn’t fact check themselves out of a paper bag? Again – no witch Pope. I’m just gonna keep pointing out the lack of a witch Pope until people get it.

7. “You have to be ________ rank, degree, etc. to have an opinion on this topic.” Yeah, okay, I’ll be sure to wave my certificate in your face before having an opinion on my own tradition. No. Your opinion may be an uneducated one and you may be corrected for it, but that doesn’t mean that you didn’t have the right to it before you completed your O levels at Hogwarts.

8. As a corollary to above, “This is just my opinion and you can’t be mad at me for it!” People absolutely have a right to their opinions. And everyone else the right to decide those opinions make them an asshole.

9. “I’m super special and powerful because xyz, which means I get to tell you what to do.” People only get to tell you what to do if you let them. Sometimes, that’s an exchange we willingly make, but other times, people will feel they have the right to tell you what to do because they are a hereditary witch or because they’ve been practicing longer. Just remember – their position doesn’t trump your humanity and you don’t have to kiss the feet of someone who kicks you.

10. “The person really wants _____ from you, and you should help them on their path. Helping them on their path helps you on yours!” Just because someone wants something from you, doesn’t mean they get it. Being a witch doesn’t take away your right to say no.  


Please remember that you don’t have to earn your right to be here. This one is tricky on some level – to be the respected person in your community, you need to put in your time. However, in order to be part of a group you don’t need to give the High Priest a blow job (seriously, run).

You don’t have to earn admission to witchcraft, but you do have to earn specific positions and other people’s trust. If you teach people not to trust you through your actions, they won’t trust you.

Enough excuses for parents who abused their kids but “meant the best”. They “meant the best” for themselves, not for the kids. It’s fucking easy to just rely on emotional abuse, threats, humiliation, shame, guilt and violence to get your way and to force your kid to stay in control and to sabotage and fuck up the child’s life so you would feel good about it, and then to just remind yourself “i meant the best” to feel no guilt about doing so whatsoever. Just repeating to yourself “it doesn’t hurt them” and “they deserved it”  while actively forcing your child to keep all the obvious trauma symptoms out of sight or ensuring the child believes it’s their own damn fault for feeling the way they do.

You know what’s not easy? Having your parent force control of your life via emotional abuse, threats, shame, humiliation, violence. Your parent getting into your own head and  gaslighting your senses until you feel worthless and insane and like a monster, until you don’t dare to feel your own feelings, until you’re ashamed of the pain you feel and can’t see yourself as anything other than a horrible burden and nothing you do can ever change that or make you good enough. You know what’s even harder? Still believing that your parent “meant the best” and not even daring to blame them and still being forced to draw the conclusion that it was after all, all your fault, for existing as you do, for being who you are, for not ever being good enough! And then, on top of all of it, hearing the rest of the world agree with the parent’s view, pressuring you to never blame them, to forgive them, to never hold them responsible, to “be better” and understand them, to not ever try to place blame on anyone but yourself because then you’re the monster.

Just. How. Is. One. Supposed. To. Heal. From. That.
Healing can’t even begin until the blame is placed on the parent! This person literally benefited from their child’s suffering! They did not get affected negatively from it at all, they didn’t even care, they walked away satisfied and getting what they wanted while the child now has a lifetime of traumatic consequences and mental illness problems! Their freedom is taken away, their quality of life reduced, their relationships and friendships sabotaged, their confidence crushed! They’re placed at extra risk for addictions and obsessions because they keep falling into the black pit of trauma no matter how hard they try to distract and their life is heavy and painful no matter how well they do afterwards! Their brain can’t regulate stress properly anymore! Abuse causes literal brain damage and all this is just so the parents would get their way! And you all still insist they shouldn’t feel guilty about it or be faced with consequences of their abuse? They shouldn’t fucking admit to themselves and to their children what they’ve done? If the truth will kill them, let them die. Abused children’s right to heal comes way before the abusers feeling good about themselves.

“noo my parents didn’t abuse me! they just accidentally made me lose all my faith in myself and caused me to feel like a worthless failure who’s never gonna be good enough to survive, and they might have hit me but it might have been just once or twice so it doesn’t count, right? they just happen to worsen my anxiety and depression constantly but I’m sure they don’t mean it!! I’m sure they have no idea how much I’m suffering and I don’t want to throw such harsh words as "abuser” around because they might find out I said such a thing and get angry, and it generally doesn’t end well for me when they’re angry! I also have bunch of holes in my memories and blurred events I’m not even sure happened in which I get hurt but who knows if I just made those up! Better be safe and assume I’m making things up and overreacting! I know if I confront them and ask them if they knew they hurt me they’re going to tell me I’m just being hysterical and imagining things for attention! They just really think they’re right! I need to keep in mind I’m indebted to them for feeding and sheltering me, god knows that was tough for them! They had a rough life too, they don’t need me accusing them of being abusers as well! Maybe it would be easier on them if I just died-“

These are the thoughts of child abuse victims. If your parents comments make you feel worthless and like a failure, they’re abusive. If your parents worsen your depression and anxiety, they’re abusive. If you’re scared of your parents they’re abusive. If they used violence to control you even once, they’re abusive. If they accuse you of being crazy or making things up when you confront them on hurting you they’re abusive. If they made you feel indebted for simply not letting you die on purpose, they’re abusive. If they forced you to focus on their lives and their perspective of you to the point where you can’t even acknowledge your own pain, injuries, and your own point of view, they’re abusive. If your parents make you feel like it would be better if you had never been born, or if you died, they’re abusive.

That's not OUR fault

We’ve been looking for this NPC for a long time. As we arrived to tower we believed he was nestled, we tried many ways to contact whomever was inside.
Along with knocking, we attempted other methods, but magic stroke us soon after.

A last attempt made the tower unexpectedly crumble to the ground. We heard a renching scream as it fell.
It was confirmed that our NPC’s was dead.

Dunn Ayr (Human Ranger): Did we just kill, one of the main character in our quest?!

Gumper (Human Fighter): It was an accident!

Sasha (Dwarf Ranger): Well, it wouldn’t have happened if he just opened the door.

Dunn Ayr: That’s victim blaming.

Gumper: It’s true, he could have just opened the door…

Gaslighting

“Why did you stay?”
“Why didn’t you leave?”
“Why didn’t you tell anyone?”

These are the questions that are fired at a survivor of gaslighting.

So what is gaslighting?

It is one of the most manipulative form of emotional abuse. It is when the victim blames themselves and has lost the faith in their own abilities. It is when you start to question your own ability to make decisions or even think. It is when someone that you are emotionally attached to becomes the person who causes you immense distress and pain.

The victims stay because they genuinely believe that they may be the cause for the distress. They stay because when it comes to someone you trust, it isn’t someone who you’d give up on that easily. They stay longer than they should because it is painful to watch someone that you love and care about (in any form be it friendship, relationship or otherwise) turn into someone that you hate. They stay out of genuine concern for the abuser’s well being.

As for why they don’t leave, it’s because they believe that they wouldn’t be able to make it without their abuser. To put it dramatically, they think that they wouldn’t be able to live without them. They believe (as they have been made to) that they are incapable of doing anything without the abuser.
Sometimes, they don’t leave out of fear of the abuser spreading false information about them or maybe because he/she has threatened to reveal the victim’s weaknesses.

They don’t tell anyone the full extent of damage being inflicted because isn’t it a human tendency to protect the people that you care about? Regardless of the type of behavior, when it comes to someone you trust, you’d tend to be protective of them and wouldn’t want anything that you say to hurt them.
So they don’t tell anyone about this sick form of demagoguery fearing whether they would even be believed or whether they would in turn be questioned about their willingness to submit to the oppressor’s wishes.

How did you let it get so bad?

What people don’t seem to understand is that the changes are so subtly done and the manipulation is so carefully implemented that the victims don’t even know what they’re falling into.
These are people you trust so at first they believe that maybe they have some hidden agenda which would lead to the betterment of themselves when in reality they are falling face flat into an emotional trap.

Then, the victims start questioning the very facts that have been presented to them because the oppressor would have made slight changes to the version of the truth which in turn would result everything being the fault of the victim.

They cut off the attachment with them only when it reaches a point where they have been hurt so badly or the abuser does something so morally wrong that no amount of excuses could pardon their behavior and they run out of instances to defend the manipulator.

This isn’t something that the survivor can “move on” from or just “get over”. It takes time to heal the wounds that have been cast on their minds.
They have been through a mental trauma, an emotional rollercoaster and a psychological assault on their very mind and these aren’t the type of scars that can be healed very soon.

It is a battle with themselves and their mind that follows in their path to recovery.

It is enough to drive anyone to the point of insanity and requires and immense amount of grit and emotional strength on their part to overcome such an ordeal.

These abusers may actually be someone who may have cared for them, or someone who may have been dealing with their own issues in such negative way or just a manipulative piece of shit who cares only themselves and don’t give a damn about how their words and actions have destroyed someone that they may have claimed to care for.

The process of healing is slow and painful. There may or may not be any physical injuries but the degree of hurt that has been cast on their minds takes a different duration for different people depending on the extent of trauma, the support from genuine well-wishers and their own strength.

Traumatized kids know how it is to go thru life alone. They were on their own since the start. They learned young that their world will turn against them, for any reason, and nobody will stand on their side. They were taught to silence their pain because crying out and getting humiliated and harmed for it hurts worse. They learned to appreciate isolation and neglect as if it was a gift, because it could be worse. They learned that their pain doesn’t matter. They learned that being weak isn’t an option, needing attention isn’t an option, wanting to be acknowledged and accepted was nothing short of asking for pain. They tried to earn it but that too only brought more pain, nothing they did was deemed good enough.

They learned to be strong. They know they’ll have nobody to call for help when things go wrong. They learned to face trials and dangers of life alone. They had no choice. Will you go to parents you’re scared of when your best friend betrays you? Will you be able to stand hearing “that’s what you deserved!” while drowning in grief? Will you talk to them when you get hurt and bullied, wounded and cornered by the world? Only to get spat on because they consider it all your fault, and you should know it’s your fault, struggling is your fault, trusting in someone is your fault, messing up in harsh world you were forced into without experience or guidance or advice or protection, it’s all your fault. You should have known better. You should have known it’s your own fault when someone hurts you. You should have known you deserved even worse. 

You learn to hide your wounds so they can’t be cut in deeper. You learn to tell yourself all the harsh and cruel words you know you’d hear if you open your mouth, because you don’t want to deserve hearing it more. You already know. You hate yourself because you’re told that all you’re going thru is happening because of who you are, because you are not good, not lovable, not able of deserving anything, not important enough to matter. And that’s never going to change, tricking people into thinking you’re human is best you can hope for, but they will eventually figure it out.

How are you supposed to figure it out it wasn’t you, without anyone on your side and the world ready to blame you? How are you supposed to shift focus on what others are doing and hold them responsible? How are you supposed to realize your worth? How are you supposed to handle when others betray and abandon you like you’re nothing, when your parents voices in your head start screaming they were right about you? 

Carrying the burden of guilt, shame, anxiety and fear that you’re being seen by everyone the same way your parents saw you, that everyone will eventually treat you as badly as your parents did, and that you deserved it, that’s what it means to walk thru the world wounded and alone. Doubting your memories, reactions, instincts, feelings, berating yourself for not being “normal” enough, for being seen as a nuisance and a burden, never feeling like you have the right to ask for what you want and need. Never knowing that get to own your life and use it freely for yourself. That is the heavy, painful life child abusers set up for their children. That’s what their parents wanted them to live thru.

Thoughts about Justin Foley

There is something that bothers in Justin’s story and the way people react to it. The truth is, Justin did let his friend rape his girlfriend and he did not do anything about it, I am not denying that.
However, Hannah was in the room and she did not do anything either. Reason? She was drunk and scared. And the truth is, so was Justin. I think both of them could have done something to stop Bryce but none of them did. Now, the problem is that people actually expected Justin to stop Bryce rather than Hannah. Why? Because this is what patriarchal society teaches us: the guy is supposed to defend his girl / a girl cannot defend herself or defend another girl against a guy. And that’s wrong. Truth it, Hannah is as guilty as Justin in all this, but people consider Hannah innocent mostly because she is a girl and she was scared whereas Justin, a guy, should have been strong, should have fought for his girl. 

I do believe Justin is more than just a guy who let his best friend force his way onto his girlfriend. He did it, that’s true, and he has no excuse. However, I think we still have a lot to learn from Justin’s character. He is a deeply troubled boy, caught up in a toxic friendship. Truth is, Bryce is behind all of Justin’s actions. That does not mean Justin’s innocent, that just means he’s been influenced by Bryce and I believe that is something to consider. 
Besides, regarding the fact that Justin lied to Jessica about what truly happens, I think it’s important to consider the fact that Justin, just like Hannah was traumatized. Hannah did not go to the police or told Jessica either. Both Justin and Hannah were silenced by trauma because that’s what violence does, that’s what rape does.

I actually had a course on rape and gender violence this year and we talked a lot about how victim-blaming is a major issue regarding the way people deal with rape. In a lot of rape cases, especially when the rapist was someone close to the rape survivor, the victim’s first move is to question themselves, to doubt themselves and to blame themselves. The victim’s first move isn’t always to blame the rapist, especially if they knew them. And I see a little of this in all this story. Jessica keeps hanging out with Bryce even when she finds out what he did and so does Justin, because at first, I don’t think they blame him. They’re both traumatized, they don’t think straight or rationnally. They don’t blame the right person. This is a very usual behavior when it comes to sexual assault and rape issues. Now all this is maybe just a theory, or some personnal thoughts but I can’t help and see a little of that in Justin and Jessica’s story. 

When I saw Justin leave his mom’s house with a gun, I was scared he would shoot himself, but I am glad he didn’t. Because I do believe Justin’s character can evolve, a lot. He still has a lot to learn, a lot to work on. He has to learn how not to depend on Bryce, how to stand up for himself and the people he loves. That’s why I think Justin, even if guilty, is still an interesting character.

[Please share your thoughts with me, and don’t hesitate to correct me if I’m wrong!]