historical-trauma

help a native girl get justice against her abuser

Hi all! Some time ago, I made a post about leaving a heavily (sexually, mentally, physically) abusive ex and moving out and away from him. After getting my living situation together, I seeked out legal advice from a lawyer who deals with domestic violence. I was able to build a case against my abuser and have decided to take legal action. Native women experience domestic violence more than twice as often than any other ethnic group, historical trauma is definitely fucking real. It is so deeply deeply important that I get some kind of justice. Lawyers are expensive and while I make decent money to care for myself, I don’t make “I can sue anyone whenever I want” money. I’m going to need some assistance with legal fees, my google wallet is deysialexis31@gmail.com I’m forever grateful for any sized contribution, any reblog, any kind and supportive words. It means more to me than I can ever ever express.

theguardian.com
Army veterans return to Standing Rock to form a human shield against police | US news | The Guardian

Jake Pogue, a 32-year-old marine corps vet, returned to the Sacred Stone camp on Friday.

US veterans are returning to Standing Rock and pledging to shield indigenous activists from attacks by a militarized police force, another sign that the fight against the Dakota Access pipeline is far from over.

Army veterans from across the country have arrived in Cannon Ball, North Dakota, or are currently en route after the news that Donald Trump’s administration has allowed the oil corporation to finish drilling across the Missouri river.

The growing group of military veterans could make it harder for police and government officials to try to remove hundreds of activists who remain camped near the construction site and, some hope, could limit use of excessive force by law enforcement during demonstrations.

“We are prepared to put our bodies between Native elders and a privatized military force,” said Elizabeth Williams, a 34-year-old air force veteran, who arrived at Standing Rock with a group of vets late on Friday. “We’ve stood in the face of fire before. We feel a responsibility to use the skills we have.”

It is unclear how many vets may arrive to Standing Rock; some organizers estimate a few dozen are on their way, while other activists are pledging that hundreds could show up in the coming weeks. An estimated 1,000 veterans traveled to Standing Rock in December just as the Obama administration announced it was denying a key permit for the oil company, a huge victory for the tribe.

The veterans camp at Standing Rock.

The massive turnout – including a ceremony in which veterans apologized to indigenous people for the long history of US violence against Native Americans – served as a powerful symbol against the $3.7bn pipeline.

But the presence of vets was not without controversy. Some said the groups were disorganized and unprepared to camp in harsh winter conditions, and others lamented that they weren’t following the directions of the Native Americans leading the movement.

Vets with post-traumatic stress disorder also suffered in the cold and chaotic environment without proper support, said Matthew Crane, a US navy veteran who is helping coordinate a return group with the organization VeteransRespond. His group has vowed to be self-sufficient and help the activists, who call themselves “water protectors”, with a wide range of services, including cleanup efforts, kitchen duties, medical support and, if needed, protection from police.

“This is a humanitarian issue,” said Crane, 33. “We’re not going to stand by and let anybody get hurt.”

On Friday afternoon, as snow rapidly melted during an unusually warm day in Cannon Ball, Jake Pogue helped organize a vets camp area at Sacred Stone, the first camp that emerged last spring in opposition to the pipeline.

“We’re not coming as fighters, but as protectors,” said the 32-year-old marine corps vet, noting that he was concerned about police escalating tactics. “Our role in that situation would be to simply form a barrier between water protectors and the police force and try to take some of that abuse for them.”

Since last fall, police have made roughly 700 arrests, at times deploying water cannons, Mace, rubber bullets, teargas, pepper spray and other less-than-lethal weapons. Private guards for the pipeline have also been accused of violent tactics.

“We have the experience of standing in the face of adverse conditions – militarization, hostility, intimidation,” said Julius Page, a 61-year-old veteran staying at the vets camp.

Dan Luker, a 66-year-old veteran who visited Standing Rock in December and returned this month, said that for many who fought in Vietnam or the Middle East it was “healing” to help water protectors.

Julius Page a 61-year-old veteran: ‘We have the experience of standing in the face of adverse conditions.’

“This is the right war, right side,” said Luker, a Vietnam vet from Boston. “Finally, it’s the US military coming on to Sioux land to help, for the first time in history, instead of coming on to Sioux land to kill natives.”

Luker said he was prepared to be hit by police ammunition if necessary: “I don’t want to see a twentysomething, thirtysomething untrained person killed by the United States government.”

LaDonna Brave Bull Allard, founder of the Sacred Stone camp and a Standing Rock tribe member, said she welcomed the return of the vets.

“The veterans are going to make sure everything is safe and sound,” she said, adding, “The people on the ground have no protection.”

At Standing Rock, indigenous activists say the mass arrests and police violence have led many of them to develop PTSD, suffering symptoms that many veterans understand well.

“This historical trauma of indigenous communities in this country is very real. It’s tragic,” said Crane. “The military has a lot of the same problems.”

Aubree Peckham, a member of the Mescalero Apache tribe who has been at Standing Rock for months, was in tears on Friday as she described the way indigenous water protectors have bonded with vets.

“We don’t know how to protect ourselves against the tactical weapons they are using,” she said. “They are getting us better prepared.”

Peckham said the affection was mutual: “We are able to talk about PTSD. And they finally feel like they are understood.”

Art and culture are themselves time-traveling, planes of existence where the past, present, and future shift seamlessly in and out. And for those of us from communities with historic collective trauma, we must understand that each of us is already science fiction walking around on two legs. Our ancestors dreamed us up and then bent reality to create us.
—  Walidah Imarisha, Octavia’s Brood

Whenever we try to envision a world without war, without violence, without prisons, without capitalism, we are engaging in speculative fiction. All organizing is science fiction. Organizers and activists dedicate their lives to creating and envisioning another world, or many other worlds… 

Many folks have asked us what science fiction could possibly have to do with social justice organizing. And every time, we have responded, “Everything. Everything.” We want organizers and movement builders to be able to claim the vast space of possibility, to be birthing visionary stories. Using their everyday realities and experiences of changing the world, they can form the foundation for the fantastic and, we hope, build a future where the fantastic liberates the mundane…

And for those of us from communities with historic collective trauma, we must understand that each of us is already science fiction walking around on two legs. Our ancestors dreamed us up and then bent reality to create us.

Octavia E. Butler said that she never wanted the title of being the solitary Black female sci-fi writer. She wanted to be one of many Black female sci-fi writers. She wanted to be one of thousands of folks writing themselves into the present and into the future. We believe in that right Butler claimed for each of us – the right to dream as ourselves, individually and collectively. But we also think it is a responsibility she handed down: are we brave enough to imagine beyond the boundaries of “the real” and then do the work of sculpting reality from our dreams?

—  Walidah Imarisha | Octavia’s Brood 

Back from a T session and straight into work :( not sure that’s been the best of ideas… I’m just taking a few minutes out before I head back in

Chap hasn’t worked with DID before but we did this small recall of thoughts feelings etc when I’m impacted by my historical trauma in the present day, and he said to me - it was like working with his ptsd clients - my emotional responses and recollections were exact - he said that was interesting to him as he hasn’t thought about the similarities - but a trauma client is a trauma client ultimately, no matter what their diagnosis is

Had to explain to him that there is a relationship between PTSD and DID and some won’t diagnose PTSD within DID because it goes without saying that PTSD is part of what consists within DID

But yep - not sure how I’m going to continue doing morning sessions and then work after :( that’s tough

anonymous asked:

Hello! My story is in a historic setting, beginning of 18th century. One of my characters has PTSD due to fighting in war over several years. People have no word for PTSD, although they know that soldiers will often come back with a similar set of symptoms. There is obviously no medication or therapist available. What could friends do that would actually help the character? Anything they might try to do to help but that would rather do more harm?

People may not have had words for PTSD back then, but the disorder itself has been described as far back as 440 BCE, by Herodotus.  

Epizelus, the son of Cuphagoras, an Athenian, was in the thick of the fray and behaving himself as a brave man should, when suddenly he was stricken with blindness, without blow of sword or dart; and this blindness continued thenceforth during the whole of his afterlife. The following is the account which he himself, as I have heard, gave of the matter: he said that a gigantic warrior, with a huge beard, which shaded all his shield, stood over against him; but the ghostly semblance passed him by, and slew the man at his side. Such, as I understand, was the tale which Epizelus told.

Lucretius wrote in 50 BCE:

The minds of mortals… often in sleep will do and dare the same… Kings take the towns by storm, succumb to capture, battle on the field, raise a wild cry as if their throats were cut even then and there. And many wrestle on and groan with pains, and fill all regions round with mighty cries and wild, as if then gnawed by fangs of panther or of lion fierce.

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3181586/

WHICH IS JUST TOO GODDAMN COOL, Y’ALL.  Sorry, had to share that. :)

The problem with the rest of your question, however, is that people with PTSD are not a monolith.  There’s no exact right way to help someone.

I’ve listed two general things characters could do, and beneath each one listed a way it could backfire or be done poorly.  It’s up to you to decide how your character would react.

  • Be supportive, and open to listening to the character’s problems
    • Force the character to talk even if they’re not ready to

  • Help identify triggers, and shield the character from encountering them
    • Excessively protecting the character from everything that could be conceived as triggering them.  Patronizing or ‘babying’ the character.

Followers with PTSD, in your experience, what have friends said or done that helped? What made things worse?


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Okay but this part of the movie was a pretty accurate portrayal actually

Scene from Lights Out. When you’re trying to get through your interview about the kid and someone else starts disclosing their own historical trauma unprompted…

CPS worker: I was assigned to Martin
after your father died.

Adult sister: Stepfather.

CPS worker: Excuse me?

Adult sister: He was my stepfather. My dad ran off when I was ten and did not come back.

CPS worker: If we could just…talk about Martin for a minute.

Of course what she missed was the sister’s trauma being relevant to what was going on with the kid; don’t shut the story down when the sister’s trying to open up to you! Either she’s just a caricature of a rushed, snippy CPS worker or you’re supposed to be like “Hey! Listen to the sister!” just like in most scary movies you’re like “Hey! Don’t creep into that dark room where you heard a scary noise! Run away now!”

Never Again.

A few years ago, a large group of people from the Long Beach Japanese American church I grew up in hopped on a bus and made a pilgrimage to Manzanar.  Most of the old people I grew up with had been interned during the war;  some at Manzanar, others at camps all over the west.  (My own family escaped internment only because they were in Hawaii, where entirely interning the large Japanese population would have been logistically, economically, and structurally impossible.)

It distresses me to hear the rhetoric of Japanese American internment once again raising its ugly head, this time directed against Muslim Americans.  Most recently, internment has been cited as “precedent” for a federal Muslim registry by Carl Higbie, who spoke to a horrified Megyn Kelly on Fox News.  

As a way to register my own horror and to address the kind of historical trauma this “precedent” has rooted in the Japanese American community across so many decades and generations, here are a few of the photos I took on that trip. The stories I heard demonstrate the trauma suffered by our elder generations but also their resilience and their creativity.

The photo above shows the memorial obelisk in the Manzanar cemetery, inscribed with the words “soul consoling tower.”  It is a pilgrimage site for the internees and their descendants, who leave strands of cranes and other offerings.

Here is a more distant view, which shows the desolation (and also the grandeur) of this place.  In the summer, it is amazingly hot and the strong winds frequently whip the dust into choking clouds.  Not a healthy place for old people who aren’t used to it;  many elderly internees were buried here.

Below is the site of the old “Pleasure Park.”  Japanese Americans are good gardeners (many of those who weren’t farmers worked as gardeners or nursery owners), so when they were plopped down in the middle of this arid landscape you bet they tried to transform it into a paradise using the local plants and rocks.  They even tried to bonsai sagebrush.  

We always knew where Mae was because of her red hat.

In the early 20th century, Manzanar had been a small orchard town (hence the name).  A few old pear trees–like the one below–are all that are left.  By the time it was an internment camp, there were still pear trees around.  Tomi said that they didn’t realize people had been there before them, so they called these “wild pears.”  They used to take the fruit, wrap them in newspaper, and put them under their beds so the fruit would ripen.

Below is a reconstruction of one of the barracks, each housing several families.

For the first few years, internees slept on cots they made themselves from straw.  Aiko couldn’t get any sleep on these cots (especially with seven people in her family), and Kaz was allergic to the wool army blankets they were given. With so many people crowded together in one structure, there was very little privacy.  Fran said that eventually families hung wool blankets up as partitions for greater privacy.  (Joyce remembers no privacy in the public bathrooms as well, although internees were eventually able to get the administration to put partitions between the toilets.)  

Aiko remembers putting “little things” on the wooden ledges to make herself feel more at home.  

At the little museum in nearby Independence:  these geta were made from scrap wood.  Fran (who had been interned at Heart Mountain in Wyoming) remembered wearing scrap-wood geta to go to the showers and walk through the snow.  She remembers the winters being unbearable for a Southern California girl.  Here, past and present overlap in the ghostly reflection of my sister’s zori-clad feet.

Scrap wood was used to make all sorts of things, from furniture to tiny decorative painted birds.

I didn’t remember having met the woman on the right in the picture below;  she didn’t go to our church, or at least not regularly.  I think she was someone’s aunt.  Mary (on the left) and So-And-So’s Auntie were asked to point themselves out on the board of old pictures.  It was amazing when they pointed out their younger selves in the *same* picture. “Wait–YOU’RE Mariko [Mary]??  I remember you!!”  They were in the same class and hadn’t seen each other since 1944.

Hearing our elders’ stories and memories was like meeting them for the first time.  As many younger Japanese Americans can attest, our elders don’t often open up about their experiences because of the trauma, humiliation, and shame they felt and continue to feel.  This trauma still runs through our communities and shows itself in ways we can’t predict.  Shortly after our trip, the church went through an event that can only be described as a betrayal by a larger, more powerful white group that clearly didn’t respect our community or its Japanese identity (I won’t go into details, but this was a group we deeply trusted).  The pain we all felt and the way we dealt with that pain was–I think–accurately described for me by a Korean American member of our community:  Japanese Americans often have, rooted deep in our communities, the expectation of betrayal.  Betrayed by our own government, we have learned to expect and to suffer through similar acts of aggression (“we should have known this would happen…” “shigata ga nai…”).  As I said above, historical traumas run deep and they run intergenerationally.  It may take Japanese Americans many more generations to finally get over internment.

We have to protect our Muslim cousins from a similar fate.  It is possible that the damage would last much longer than the span of this next presidency.

There are as many reasons as there are kinds of writers. There is the exophonic writer who is the product of historical trauma and dislocation — Nabokov in exile, for example: “My private tragedy, which cannot, indeed should not, be anybody’s concern, is that I had to abandon my natural language, my natural idiom.” It can be a way to find a larger audience — think of Joseph Conrad — or it might allow the writer to pursue a natural affinity for another language. The Japanese writer Yuko Otomo, who writes primarily in English, delights in its democratic impulses: “I love the fact that English does not have hierarchical elements that Japanese weighs on and is very clear-cut. I am elated to address a professor and a dog with the same pronoun ‘you.’” For some writers it allows an exciting rebirth. “Dissecting my linguistic metamorphosis, I realize that I’m trying to get away from something, to free myself,” Jhumpa Lahiri has written of her decision to read and write exclusively in Italian, which has allowed her to become “a tougher, freer writer, who, taking root again, grows in a different way.” For others the draw is less an interest in shaping a future than in decisively purging themselves of the past. Emil Cioran: “When I changed my language, I annihilated my past. I changed my entire life.” Yiyun Li has written that she adopted English in her 20s with a kind of absoluteness that was tantamount to suicide.

perfectdespair  asked:

♡ validate me, bitch

ALIIIIICE !!!  Ok, you ? You are me. I always felt like I was the black sheep of the BTVS fandom because my only real concern was the Fanged Four / The Whirlwind. I thought I was the only one, especially the only one who heavily shipped them together instead of with other non-whirlwind members. Then I met you. Then we constructed a weave of AUs that are much better than canon—-lbr Joss wrote Jasmine and that ? is the worst thing any bad fic has ever done.—-and you’ve been my sounding board for a shit ton of HCs that have made my days so much easier, especially during a period where my BPD was acting up the worst. Writing with you, plotting with you, and becoming what I hope to be a friend is something I’m very grateful for. 

Not only that? But you aren’t afraid to make Darla messy. You not only give Darla the historically appropriate trauma, but you do it in a tasteful, respectful way. When people complain about writing triggering themes, it’s usually for those who glorify it, and not make it messy or ugly as it’s supposed to: you don’t. You are respectful, diligent, and handle so much care that the trauma Elizabeth endured as a young child is what gives birth to Darla today. Also, the historical research that you’ve put into Darla’s human life ?? JFC it’s amazing and it shows how much you love and care for your character. 

Honestly, it’s as if Julie was writing Darla. I don’t say that lightly. 

candace gives love !!

Aurora Levins Morales (born February 24, 1954) is a Puerto Rican Jewish writer and poet. She is significant within Latina feminism and Third World feminism as well as other social justice movements.

Levins Morales was born February 24, 1954 in Indiera Baja, Maricao, Puerto Rico. Her mother, Rosario Morales, was a Harlem-born Puerto Rican writer. Her father is an ecologist who is of Ukrainian Jewish heritage, born in Brooklyn. She has two brothers, Ricardo and Alejandro.

Levins Morales became a public writer in the 1970s as a result of the many social justice movements of that time that addressed the importance of giving a voice to the oppressed. At fifteen, she was the youngest member of the Chicago Women’s Liberation Union and co-produced a feminist radio show, took part in sit-ins and demonstrations against the Vietnam War, guerrilla theater, women's consciousness raising groups and door to door organizing for daycare and equal pay.

She attended Franconia College in Franconia, New Hampshire. Levins Morales also studied at Mills College in Oakland, California, and holds a Ph.D. in Women’s Studies and History from the online Union Institute & University.

In 1976, she moved to the San Francisco Bay Area, where she worked at the KPFA Third World News Bureau, reporting on events in South Africa, the Philippines, Chile, Nicaragua and what was still Rhodesia, and on environmental racism, housing struggles, and the movement to get the US Navy to stop bombing Vieques, Puerto Rico.

Levins Morales became part of a radical US women of color writers movement that sought to integrate the struggles against sexism and racism. She began doing coffeehouse readings with other women, organizing poetry series, producing radio programs, publishing in literary journals and anthologies, and eventually becoming one of the contributors to This Bridge Called My Back, where she focuses on depicting the race, class, and gender issues that together shape Puerto Rican women’s identities and historical experiences. Some of her major themes are feminism; multiple identity (Puerto Rican, Jewish, North American), immigrant experience, Jewish radicalism and history, Puerto Rican history, and the importance of collective memory, of history and art, in resisting oppression and creating social change.

In 1986, Morales and her mother and wrote Getting Home Alive, a collection of poetry and prose about their lives as US Puerto Rican women. In part as a result of response to this book, Levins Morales decided to go to graduate school to become a historian. While her dissertation focused on retelling the history of the Atlantic world with Puerto Rican women’s lives at the center, she also did extensive research on the history of Puerto Ricans in California, collecting several dozen oral histories, and preserving early documents of the San Francisco Puerto Rican community. From 1999 to 2002 she worked at the Oakland Museum of California as lead historian for the Latino Community History Project, working with high school students to collect oral histories and photographs, and create artwork and curriculum materials based on them.

In her collection of essays Medicine Stories: History, Culture, and the Politics of Integrity (1998) Levins Morales questions traditional accounts of American history and their consistent exclusion of people of color. She argues that traditional historical narratives have had devastating effects on those it has silenced, and oppressed. In an attempt to “heal” this historical trauma of oppression, she designs a “medicinal” history that gives centrality to the marginalized, particularly Puerto Rican women. Levins Morales strives to make visible those who have been absent from history books while also emphasizing resistance efforts.

In her book, Remedios: Stories of Earth and Iron from the History of Puertorriqueñas (1998), her goal is “to unearth the names of women deemed unimportant by the writers of official histories”(Levins Morales, p. xvii). Short pieces interspersed throughout the narratives describe medicinal herbs and foods that symbolize the healing properties of the narratives that follow those sections. In this manner she treats historical erasure as a disease that a curandera historian can heal through “home-grown” herbal history. The histories she portrays in the text demonstrate the strength and resistance of Puerto Rican women and their ancestors.

Levins Morales is one of the 18 Latina feminist women who participated in the gatherings of the Latina Feminist Group, which culminated with the publication of Telling to Live: Latina Feminist Testimonios in 2001.

In 2011, following the death of her mother and co-author Rosario Morales, Levins Morales moved to Cambridge, Massachusetts to live with her father.

In 2013, she self-published Kindling: Writings On the Body through her own Palabera Press.

2

“I tend to surround myself with whatever material I can get a hold of, especially if it’s a historical movie. So I did read Primo Levi, and watched the movie by Claude Lanzmann, Shoah, which was the thing that really helped me the most. You see these people talking about their experiences, and they have this urge to tell their stories, because finally somebody has asked them. They feel this need to tell the world what happened and what humanity is capable of, and for the first minute, you think they’re over it, that they can look at it and talk about it, and then there’s always this moment where the voice cracks, or they get so quiet that you can’t hear them, or you see them fighting away the tears. And I thought, “This is the moment that Nelly is in.” There is a combination of trying to analytically understand what trauma is, and also working through it to get to a very emotional place.”

In anticipation of our Phoenix release, The A.V. Club spoke to Nina Hoss about her incredible performance, collaborating with director Christian Petzold, and the legacy of artistic representations of historical trauma.

Losses

I.
Blood spilled
on snow

II.
The children cried as they were
ripped from mothers’ arms
only to be thrust
into metallic coldness of militaristic pretensions
that pulled the hair from their heads,
the words from their lungs,
and laughed at the sobs they hid in their pillows in
the dark loneliness of night.

III.
No Indians Allowed
on the lands your ancestors walked
generation after generation.
These lands are not yours anymore.

IV.
They are unearthed.
The bones of our ancestors are
bleached sterile and
scientific
by fluorescent lights and dusty cardboard boxes.

V.
A list of adjectives:
                Filthy
                Drunk
                Greedy
                Undeserving

VI.
Firewater licks wounds,
burning as salves never would and
cars drive fast down bends.
Guns to lips.
Youth ends.

VII.
Silence speaks louder than words—
our past is yours
yet somehow lesser.

VIII.
This poem will never matter to you.