Gender inequality -> the side you don’t hear!

As today is International Men’s day and after hearing some amazing things at work, I feel this post has to be done.

Note to all hardcore feminists out there: I have been shouted at and already had some nasty things said to be for this point of view but guess what, I don’t care because honestly, it is the truth.

Though yes, women do have some rough times which we have had to fight for what we have including the right to vote, to an education, to work and even to be able to get divorced there is one key thing that kills me… Gender equality also affects men, so why are their issues not brought to the table like women are?

When a woman is raped she has lots of sympathies thrown her way. She is supported by many organisations to help with the trauma she has been through and guided through the process of putting their attackers behind bars. But what about men?

Men, both gay and straight, can be raped or suffer vicious attacks. So to can transgender and nonbinary people.

“According to a 2017 crime survey by the ONS, in 2017 alone there were around 138,000 reports of sexual assaults against men that year.”  https://uk.news.yahoo.com/international-men-apos-day-2018-161404955.html

Can you imagine 138000 men being raped? If you read the article fully it also says this may be an underestimation because men are too afraid to come forward. How can we live in a world where there are people out there who have been victims of rape who are more scared of reporting then they are off living their lives. This is something that cant go on.

Don’t get me wrong, women have a very bad time when it comes to Rape as people can say, “well she was asking for it” or  “she led him on”. This is also known as victim shaming. However, if a gay man is raped, I know from someone who has not given me permission to use his name, was told, “how can you be raped by another man, your GAY?” The other misconception that is out there is that men can’t be raped because they are the ones who penetrate or clearly get aroused. I will tell you what I say to everyone, JUST BECAUSE YOU CLIMAX DOESNT MEAN YOU WERE NOT RAPED. SEX WITH NO CONSENT NO MATTER YOUR GENDER, SEXUALITY, RELIGION OR LIVING SITUATION IS RAPE!!!!!!

People are so used to the idea that men are the perpetrators of violence that there is no way they can be a victim. in 2009 only 13% of men who were victims of domestic abuse reported it. Can you imagine what those brave 13% must have felt like reporting? The shame they may have been feeling because of the outside world men are not the victims but they are perpetrators. A woman can go to a police station and say my husband is hitting me, and don’t get me wrong Domestic abuse whether the victim is male or female is wrong, yet people are more inclined to believe a woman than a man.

But why is this the case? Men who become victims are the men that we women should really prefer to have. They do not hit women, even if they are concerned about something so there are women out there that have taken advantage of this and seen it as weakness. Abuse of power in its truest form.

When a man hits a woman it’s terrible but when a woman abuses a man its laughable? talk about gender inequality and double standards. This world has made it so hard for men to come forward.

“In 2017, 4,382 men took their own lives, an average of 12 per day” https://uk.news.yahoo.com/international-men-apos-day-2018-161404955.html

Suicide is not solely caused by someone being a victim of something, however, how many men out of the 12 per day may have been a victim of a crime? You honestly can’t say that it is solely due to mental health because if it was, I would say we have a health crisis on our hands! Let us be real here. An Average of 12 men per day took their own lives last year and yet gender equality seems only to cover female gender equality. This has to stop!

True Gender Equality can never EVER become a real possibility until both sides are equally represented it just can’t.

Now, this is a call out to all men and women alike, I am a survivor of Physical, Mental and sexual abuse. I know how hard it is to disclose and for certain things, there are people I can’t disclose to because of my history. I will however say, do not go it alone, I did for a long time and it did me no good. I had to figure out what I was going to do and had to do the hard work yourself. If you are being victimised please reach out to someone and disclose where you can. Even if you just ask for someone who is anonymous to help you find out your support please reach out. Even if you just reach out to me in a comment and ask me for my email address (it doesnt even have to be on this post to hide why, I will do what I can) Men you do not have to suffer alone in the darkness. 

 

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Abuse, Fear, Trust and Anger

Due to some really hateful things that were said to me about my videos I have decided not to do them anymore.

So today I am going to talk about surviving abuse, fear, trust, and Anger. You might all think that fear trust and anger go part and parcel of fear, trust, and anger and that I will be making the same point repeatedly. In some cases it is true, they are linked but I am also going to talk about how they are different.

So let’s start with fear. Most people think fight or flight when they think about fear, some may even think about the freezing aspect. When you are a survivor of abuse, however, there is a 4 option and that is submission. When you start getting abused you deal with fight or flight or freeze but when it is prolonged like it has been for me you get into this state of submission. You stop fighting because that is the only way to survive. Flight, especially in some cases, is not possible and you certainly have not frozen. You choose to survive and that involves submission. It is not you giving in, it is you choosing to survive.

Whether it is verbal, emotional, physical or sexual you find yourself submitting to stay alive. You might think that verbal and emotional is easy to get away from because there is no one assaulting your body but it is just as hurtful as physical or sexual and is harder to identify. The reason for this is because there are no visible scars and so your abusers can shrug off the effects that they have caused you to others as, “their acting out” or that “they are lying”. This happened to me with the people my parents brought into our house. Their kids would sexually abuse me and when I would not do what they wanted they made me out to be this monster… Soon over time, no one believed anything I said so I had to submit in order to survive. I would, however, do what I could to keep my distance. I would try and force myself into school with a fever so that they would not be called to look after me while my parents were at work… The downside to this, however, is that my mum was an ex-nurse so she knew when I had to stay home from school. I would then get so clingy to my parents but still left with them. So submission was my only way to survive.

Trust is the next thing I want to talk to you about. It is a wonderful thing, however, victims of abuse never have that luxury. Whether it was my parents physically abusing me, family friends sexually abusing me or siblings emotionally abusing me, I learned that I could not trust anyone. This has followed me into my adult life and because of this, I have very few people that I would consider a friend. I just do not make friends easily and as such I find it hard to trust what peoples intentions are. This is because of the trust that I put in people who were supposed to protect me growing up ad they did not. You may think it is something to get over, but when you have lost trust in people you should not have lost trust in then it becomes very much so, a part of who you are. It informs your developing mind and makes it harder for you to trust anyone.

Anger for me is a very difficult one to deal with. I find that due to my history there are certain situations that bring real anger out of me. On a night out some guys tried to pull a friend down a dark alley and I nearly got myself arrested with my angry outburst. This is not something that is easy to fix. This is, especially in my situation where I still have to live with the people who caused a lot of problems for me growing up almost an impossible task. Honestly, though it is not the anger over what they did and allowed to happen to me that gets me angry anymore, it is the fact that I am stuck now due to people being unable and unwilling to help me.

Now finally onto the Abuse. NO ABUSE IS ACCEPTABLE. We, however, as a society, need to find a way to help people in a seriously complex situation out. There are people like me out there who cant access help because their situations are so complex that it does not fit into any one category. For people like me the only way out if to get help from someone and when no one is willing to listen or help, you feel alone and remain once again STUCK! Many survivors of abuse play it’s my fault game but how can a 6-year-old, being forced to learn what a 69ner is really been at fault? This has rocked my faith, my self-confidence, every relationship I have ever had and now when I am finally able to say I need help the authorities are putting me in a situation where I can’t get help because I am unable to report it for fear of both myself and someone else….

I am hoping someone out there with me being open and honest about my story will help me. Please see my Gofundme page entitled help me survive.  https://t.co/27kabyJJdN

The money is going to be used in the following ways:

  1. clear off all debts so that I can start off clean
  2. find somewhere to live that is suitable for my needs as well as financially viable
  3. Pay a few months in advance so if needed I can get benefits
  4. Change my name so my abusers will no longer be able to find me and I can cut ties with them completely.
  5. kit out my new place with the things I need to heal and grow stronger in myself.

If you can help me please please donate or even share with others.. I need help and no one is able to help me.

Getting the conversation started

So this week has been National Inclusion Week and one of the main things that I have learned from this week is that we need to start empowering people to talk about their disabilities, their differences as well as things that make them unique. More needs to be done to support those both inside and outside the workplace who have a story to tell but are too scared that they will be judged.

When I was first diagnosed as Autistic I wondered how on earth I would describe it to people at work. For me it made me understand some of my behaviors from my childhood however as an adult I wondered how people would take it. Luckily I had a wonderful line manager who listened and helped me out with my understand what I was going through.

Through telling my line manager I was able to identify some of the things like my issues with volume control in my voice. Every time I am anxious I was able to speak to my line manager.  Through her support, when I joined a new team, I felt confident telling them I was diagnosed as Autistic. The main thing I tell them is that if you notice something to please tell me. If I am told constructively I am able to take it however if someone has a go at me when I struggle.

With the autism, I have come to understand some of my strange behaviors. An example is that I have gotten hooked on “A Discovery of Witches” to the point where I have watched the first 3 episodes again and again and am desperate for next week to come so I can watch all 4 episodes. Before people would tell me I am strange and odd for it but I have come to understand that there are things that I love, for instance, mystical folklore, crime, and cartoons. This is just something which is my specialty areas. Because of the Autism, I tend to fixate on them which is good to know. This is helping me learn more about me and helping me to grow. I am still working out how it all works with me and I am trying very hard to grow into a more confident me but honestly, it is a challenge.

As a dyslexic, I always knew I was struggling with school. I was often told that there was no problem with me, it was just that I was not applying myself. It knocked my confidence in everything and I honestly did not even believe I would get A-levels. It took one school to really take an interest which helps. One teacher I had in particular who helped me out was Mr. Phillips. He would go through my bad homework and give me the chance to redo them. He would not change my grade but it helped me get the work up to standard. Because of him, during my A-levels, I was able to get a B in sociology. This was a very big accomplishment for me as it is a pure essay writing qualification.  Mr. Phillips helped me out so much. I honestly wish I knew where he was now so that I could thank him.

Depression is a hard one for me especially as I live with it every day. It is hard to put into words but there are just days that I do not even want to get out of bed. I want to hide under my duvet and let the world pass me by. The problem is is that I know how bad I used to get when I was first diagnosed. I took a penknife to my hand. I do not ever want to get to that state again. I try and be open about it, however, it can be hard as you wonder how people will react when you do. I know that there are people out there who will treat you like glass and they will amend the way they interact with you which is not very good. For me when people are around me being themselves it is when I almost feel alright.

Now honestly, being 32 with spinal problems is a terrible thing. It honestly makes me think I did something bad in a past life but honestly, I am hoping that I will be able to get myself to a stage when I feel confident about it. I just hope that it would do a lot better sooner rather than later so that when I am older I won’t have extra problems.

Yet, with all I have to deal with, I do my best to get the most out of every day.  I try and live my life in a way that when I look back at it I can be proud of everything that I have done. There is still so much that I want to do with my life and hope, of all hope, that I will get it done.

Hopelessness

Today I am going to talk about hopelessness. This is something that I am feeling at the moment. I live in an abusive household and the thing that is holding me back honestly is the lack of cash. I have tried raising money through gofundme to help me get what I need to continue with my Thank You Campaign as well as finding somewhere to live but never get anywhere. I am now at a stage where I have just given up. I just have to accept that I am not going to be the person who gets out of their bad situation. I just have a sheer sense of hopelessness and apathy now.

Unless I get a HUGE random act of kindness in the form of money or win the lottery I am resigned to my lot in life..

Let’s Talk About Dementia

Dementia is a vile, evil ilness which is known as the Long Goodbye. It is something that takes you away piece by piece until there is nothing left except a shell waiting to die.

My father also has dementia. 

Over the last few years, I have seen this vile illness strip away pieces of my dad. He went from being an unhealthy person who went out, met people and enjoyed music to someone who it is a struggle to even get out of bed in the morning. A huge turning point for us was when he lost his drivers license. That was a lifeline for him and it was taken away.

It’s not all doom and gloom though. Last night I got to see my dad do something I hadn’t seen him do in years. That is, pick up a guitar. Now you may think that this is something minor however, my dad is a musical man. He could have gone all the way. The man could recite songs on his guitar without music or anything else. He was a musical genius. But with the illness, he doesn’t play anymore. So to see him pick up a guitar honestly I felt like crying tears of joy. The glee in his eyes and the joy in my hear made me want to cry my eyes out. I did manage to hold it in till I was not with him but honestly cried like a baby.

So enjoy the time you have with the loved ones you have because honestly this illness can break your heart x

I’m not Crazy, I am depressed

 

For me, this worked wonders. I found that if I was able to make light of the situation I found myself regarding my mental health then people around me would feel a lot easier about talking to me about it.

My way is not the best way may be to take the stigma out of Mental Health but for me, it works. I have always been known as somewhat of a fruitloop doing things because I wanted to do them, even if it was not what was expected of me. Take my Thank You Campaign, I do it because I want all people who serve in some form of uniform to know that there is at least one person out there who supports them. This is not seen as the norm but I don’t care, it makes me feel good and therefore I do it…

Each person’s mental health issues are unique to them to find a way that is suitable for you to broach that subject.