when I first saw what Rian said about the romance I was really really upset but then I read what other people said about them being allies and how it takes time for a romantic relationship to develop and that literally lifted my mood. what I'm absolutely terrified of is what the antis are saying. I've already seen what some of them have said but it's going to get so much worse and they're going to bring that point up in literally everything. I just want to be safe and happy but idk if I can now
Here’s the thing, anon, and I’m going to be as blunt and honest as I can here.
When I was being abused, nothing terrified me more than fucking up. Even if it was minor, even if it was inconsequential, even if it was an honest mistake or just a human one. Because I knew that my abuser would lord it over me every. single. time they felt threatened, any time something good happened to me, any time I was already hurting and down on myself, any time they felt powerless and just needed to kick someone to make themselves feel better.
Antis have the exact same mindset. Think about it: when are they the most vocal and at their nastiest? a) When something comes out that’s good news for the Reylo fandom (shift in balance of power: we’re happy and they’re threatened); b) when something comes out that’s good news for them (need to strike out and hurt less powerful group to maintain euphoric feeling of power and righteousness); c) weekends/evenings/summers/any downtime, particularly for students (primary demographic for antis; we’re dealing with summarily miserable people, and downtime to think and self-reflect can lead to anger/helplessness and the need to project and lash out).
And they will trot out the same fandom missteps over and over and over again, using it to tar the whole fandom with the same brush. They need us to be the bad guys. They need us to be wrong. And they will use every single scrap of ammunition they have to attack and try to reframe the narrative so that we are. They got some pretty good reinforcements today, just like my abusers did when I did something wrong, or when someone else said something justifiably negative about me that they could then twist and weaponize.
I mention this not as a pejorative or to draw a neat parallel between antis and abusers (although there is significant connective tissue). The important part is how I finally stopped them from being able to lord those mistakes over me and kick me in the ribs:
Zero contact. Total inaccessibility. None of my past abusers have any access to me. I know that if they did, they’d resort to those same behaviors, because that’s how they operate.
And antis are the same way. In order to stop them, you have to keep them from getting to you, in any form.
Block liberally and on-sight. Don’t ask questions, just block. I go so far as to block anyone I see liking or reblogging anti posts. Never, ever engage or speak to antis. Restrict who can view your blog if you have to. Disable anon asks. Blacklist anti keywords and remove yourself entirely from the discourse. The bottom line is that antis are mentally abusive and emotionally exhausting to deal with; protect yourself and don’t let them close enough to penetrate your defenses. Because they will, and they will attack with absolutely everything they have.
Remember: you’re dealing with people who want to hurt you. And the only answer to that is to not let them.