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aaangyl
aaangyl
YES WE CAN HAS!
Wed, Apr. 30th, 2008 04:51 pm
// Boobies. /

39CommentReply


ashley_y
ashley_y
Ashley
Thu, May. 1st, 2008 02:16 am (UTC)

Don't worry about the last N posts: they're all by folks exercising their outrage muscles. For all the talk about "That Guy", the OSBP was something invented and largely perpetuated by women. Though it was of course a guy who wrote about it in such a creepy way...

Anyway, what worked for me is... I became more attractive by becoming more confident. I became more confident by feeling better about myself. I felt better about myself by becoming a better person per my own values, and finding out more about what I really wanted and what those values were.


ReplyThread Parent

aaangyl
aaangyl
YES WE CAN HAS!
Thu, May. 1st, 2008 03:03 am (UTC)

This is pretty rambling, but it's harder to edit in these little comment boxes than the big post boxes!

When I was a kid, we'd sing this song about "your rights stop at the end of my nose" and then we'd have discussions about what that meant. Essentially, it means that your skin, your physical personhood, is a boundary space. You are responsible for what goes on inside that boundary (emotions, thoughts, etc) - someone can't MAKE YOU feel happy or sad with their words unless you're giving them the power to make you feel that way. What you do OUTSIDE your skin is an ACTION, as opposed to thoughts and feelings, so if you say something, or touch someone, you've made a decision to turn something INSIDE into something OUTSIDE. You are and will be held responsible for your actions OUTSIDE. When you ask someone about their boobs and they feel threatened, it's not solely about either party. You may have asked poorly - it's helpful to have honest female friends you can bounce some of your approaches off of so they can point out things that you might not realize you could be expressing. They may be reacting poorly because of some past experience, trigger, bias, or issue you have no clue exists - in the end, that's for them to work out, someday, maybe.

- There's a lot of culture and society and psychology in the verbal exchange space, and seriously, the best way to get more comfortable in this realm is to find some "safe" friends, people with more social savvy than you but that also understand you might lack those skills and say things "badly" a lot, and they like you and understand you and forgive you anyway, and want to help you, you know the type? (But do them a favor and don't ask for their help in that unless you seriously want it, because it's a LOT of work and you're going to get told you're wrong a LOT and it is a SKILL, absolutely not some natural gut-based thing - it might seem like it is for a lot of people, but it's just that they learned it so early they've forgotten the process or even that there was one, but seriously I SWEAR to you, it is a skill and it can be learned by anyone willing to WORK HARD to learn it.) -

Now, the physical action realm is much more clear-cut, and is what I was intending to touch (ha) upon with my comments today. The skin is a boundary point. Touching without asking is an explicit no-no. (Now, don't get all letter-of-the-law stupid about it. Accidents are accidents, crowded spaces are crowded spaces, and certain social groups are more or less touch-friendly than others. It is YOUR responsibility to move yourself out of social groups that don't match your preferences and into ones that do, and if the groups you'd like to be in don't want you, you may or may not be able to figure out why. This is all pretty complicated, huh? It's usually a bad idea to be reductionist about social things, because they're just such diverse, complex systems.) Actions against someone's person would also involve throwing shit at them, stealing their shit, and, to some, deliberately telling lies about them so as to damage their image or reputation.

"That Guy" does not respect boundaries. He does not respect HIS OWN boundaries, he does not respect HIMSELF, so it's practically impossible for him to be capable of acknowledging and respecting the boundaries of others. "That Chick" has the exact same problem with respecting boundaries, incidentally, but TYPICALLY the male way of this disrespect is invading others' boundaries and the female version is failure to defend one's own boundaries, but that's a 20-page essay I'm not going in to now.

[cont'd]


ReplyThread Parent
aaangyl
aaangyl
YES WE CAN HAS!
Thu, May. 1st, 2008 03:03 am (UTC)

Now, for the topic of you. You've got a LOT of fear oozing out of your responses, both here and what I've seen from you elsewhere, on this topic. Fear is the mind-killer. Fear is the little death. Err. Wait. ---
Fear. What are you so afraid of? Why? This calls for some mindfulness. (Actually, mindfulness is where the respect and the compassion and all that starts. Mindfulness is a lifelong process, a path, a way of life.) If you understand who you are and what you value and why, and you live honoring that AND ALSO respecting that others might be different (which brings us back to asking - the best way to find out if someone is different is to ask them about things. Might they lie? Sure, but that's NOT actually your responsibility, outside of a general caveat emptor.), you may some day discover some chick that thinks your fumbling, overly-blunt honesty is, in fact, charming and utterly refreshing.

I'm going to drop in a paragraph about communication here. Communication isn't "I talk you listen or nod along". Proper communication involves pausing to parrot back to each other what you think the other person just said, in your own words. It involves asking clarifying questions. It shouldn't involve very much explaining to other people why they're "wrong" about anything non-factual - that is, the rules of conversation ask you to assume that if someone reports a FEELING, an OPINION, or an EXPERIENCE, that you accept that that is their experience, even if you don't think (or know) that it would be yours in a similar situation. The word "I" is to be favored over "you" - this is a concept called I-statements, and is meant to differentiate between "You hurt my feelings when you said X" and "When I heard you say X, I felt Y because of Z." One way, how the person feels is someone else's fault, an the other way the person is owning their feeling and exploring where it came from.

Notice words like "mindfulness" "communicate" "boundaries" and "responsibility" a lot? That's because that's really, at the core, what the triggers in this issue are. Nerd culture in particular has a lot of fail in these areas, as has been observed by approximately everyone on the internet ever. I'd say start by learning to communicate, and differentiate "your shit" from "other people's shit". The respect may very well flow naturally from the development of that mindfulness. It's a path, never a destination.

There's enough here that you'll probably have some more questions, so I'll just post now and see what if any of this you find interesting.


ReplyThread Parent
lemurling
lemurling
lemurling
Thu, May. 1st, 2008 03:17 am (UTC)

Things like this are why I kick myself every once in a while that I was in such a cave when I had a chance to actually know you.


ReplyThread Parent
hansandersen
hansandersen
Hans Christian Andersen
Thu, May. 1st, 2008 05:11 am (UTC)

You should come up and visit sometime!


ReplyThread Parent
aaangyl
aaangyl
YES WE CAN HAS!
Thu, May. 1st, 2008 08:08 am (UTC)

Yeah what he said! Every time you come up in conversation we have to pause for a moment of fondness.


ReplyThread Parent

aaangyl
aaangyl
YES WE CAN HAS!
Thu, May. 1st, 2008 03:31 am (UTC)

Are you upset enough to work on getting better at it? Do you feel like enough of a failure that the next 999,999 times you have a communication failure in the process of learning, it can't be as bad as this feeling right now?

If so, then you've got a journey at your doorstep, Bilbo. ;)


ReplyThread Parent

aaangyl
aaangyl
YES WE CAN HAS!
Thu, May. 1st, 2008 04:02 am (UTC)

Woah baby.

Breathe. Slowly. In through your nose, out through your mouth. Deep breaths. K?


ReplyThread Parent








aaangyl
aaangyl
YES WE CAN HAS!
Thu, May. 1st, 2008 04:33 am (UTC)

So, the statement "I am/am not a failure" - that's suggesting your personhood, your self, your inside, can be a failure. No, I think that is untrue. You can fail at the /action of/ trying to communicate. That does not make your /personhood/ a failure. This is very very important to grasp, deeply. You are not the same thing as your actions, but you are in control of and responsible for them.

Next, I don't really know you personally at all, and I think we both know that. Those paragraphs and paragraphs were just stabs in the dark at things relating to the issues the OSBP raised, because you asked for things to DO rather than NOT DO.

The only thing I was directing to you specifically was that the smell of fear was strong in your responses to this topic. I doubt I'm the only one that sensed that. Expressing fear IS NOT failing at communicating. Not noticing you were expressing (something that would be read as) fear at first IS NOT failing at communication. Wanting some affirmation to take off the sting of recognizing something unpleasant in oneself is ALSO okay - but you're not entitled to it from anyone but yourself. ;). I'm going to respond with some more clarification and questions, and we can practice communicating right here and now!

I think you shouldn't run from that fear. I think that you might benefit from sitting with it and checking it out more closely. Making it go away with affirmations is just as much not reconciling it as making it go away by denying it. Sit with it - the breathing is to keep you grounded while you sit with it. Emotions are there FOR A REASON. They serve a PURPOSE. They're pointers, they indicate things that need to be experienced, have attention paid to them, be resolved. They're yours, a part of you, something you get to experience. Respect them, love them if you can. In order to accept and respect other people's emotions, you must be able to do it with your own first.

And if I thought people could be "hopeless" at improving their communication skills, I definitely wouldn't spend the amount of time it took to type that all out trying to outline things one can do to improve. Neither of us is trolling here. Holding on to that "hopeless" notion is a great way to absolve yourself of responsibility, isn't it? "I'm just hopeless, it's not my fault." STOP THAT. You don't have to try to get better, but you at the least need to acknowledge that it is your choice to work on it or not. Most people don't, and still manage to have full lives and make babies, cuz nature is awesome like that. But I'm not going to let you shirk your power on my shift in my comments. :)

I said - this is important - that "nerd culture" was full of fail in communication. Are you nerd culture? (The "fumbling, overly-blunt honesty" line was actually me thinking about how very charming I found those qualities in MY boyfriend as he fumbled his way into my heart.) I made a big series of generalizations, and you recognized some aspects of them from yourself, and you probably projected yourself in as the source of what I was talking about. That's giving me waaaay too much credit. I'm utterly not ualified to make those sorts of statements about you as an individual. Mindfulness. What did you identify with? Why do you think you identified with it? What is scary about that? The fact that you had a strong reaction means there's something very important inside that wants your attention. Will you honor it?


ReplyThread Parent