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» Scarleteen Boards: 2000 - 2014 (Archive) » SCARLETEEN CENTRAL » The Randoms » Are you stupid?

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Author Topic: Are you stupid?
Heather
Executive Director & Founder
Member # 3

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(Now that I have your attention...)

I was reminded, after just reading a review of the book at Amazon, where a reviewer clearly felt that young adult readers were just too plain stupid to understand the book, more mature sex information and respectful address, of something I've been wanting to get y'all talking about for a while.

I know that for me, in my teens, I think I must have said, "I am NOT stupid!" about twenty times a day to people (adults AND peers), and being treated like the lowest common denominator because of my age, because of the low expectations had for teens, the works, drove me NUTS. And while I don't have to deal with that anymore (thank christ), I feel nearly as frustrated when I run into situations where people think the teens I work with now -- namely, all of you, teens at the AGA, teens in other scenarios -- just aren't bright enough or mature enough to get what I say, or have relationships or discussions with others with maturity and smarts.

So, how do you deal with that when you have to? What are the coping tools you use when you're dumbed down? What do you think are some ways teens and young adults can counter that sort of treatment or ideas about them/you?

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Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

Posts: 68290 | From: An island near Seattle | Registered: May 2000  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
LucysDiamonds
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I had to deal with this a LOT throughout high school, and even now, as a student at a very good, well-known university, my parents and sometimes other adults who don't know me that well talk down to me. Mostly, I just grimace internally and pull out my best vocabulary, try to eliminate the "ums" and "likes" that find their way into my speech (I've GOT to work on that anyway): basically, I try to present myself as a mature young woman and as a professional and intellectual equal to the person I'm speaking with. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn't - I tend to get overemotional with my mother, so that backfires kind of a lot, haha - but at least I can say I've done my best, and that I've taken the higher ground by not throwing a hissy fit (which usually makes people see you as less mature anyway).

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So if you care to find me
Look to the western sky
As someone told me lately
Everyone deserves the chance to fly

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Leabug
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I've used the same method as LucysDiamonds- I try my very best to speak and write intelligently, without using "netspeak" and "ums" and "likes".

Specifically with regards to sexuality, I've found that it helps to approach the subject with maturity- no giggling at things- and using proper terminology. (It's not a hoohaa, it's a vulva! [Razz] ) I once had a doctor (who was substituting for my normal GP while she went to Nepal) who dumbed things down- during a pap he actually said "I'm going to stick this duck-bill-shaped thingy into your area down there, okay sweetie?" I responded by saying "You mean, you're inserting the speculum into my vagina?" with a big sarcastic smile.

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Lea

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James the Dark
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Well, I can't make any claims to maturity (I may be 21 by the calender, but emotionally I'd wager I'm not far past 14), but I do know when people are talking down to me. It happens frequently enough, and coincidentally always by men in their late fifties and early sixties. They think because I'm young and I have the longest hair of anybody in my family (and it doesn't even reach my shoulders), I'm some sort of brain-dead hippy freak, to be spoken to with derision, if it is not possible simply to talk around me.

My coping mechanism towards 'forced stupidization' is how I react to pretty much everything that goes wrong. I shut down the part of me that would be damaged if somebody took a swing at it, and let the insults and down-talk slide right off my back, like water off a duck's feathers. Ignoring people usually makes the insults go away, if only for a while.

If they say something really offensive to me (and there aren't that many topics that draw forth the slightest bit of miff, let alone the wrath of which I'm currently referring), I'll cut them apart like a seed-potato before planting. I've actually had somebody tell me, full of the authority that thirty years appearantly bestowed upon them instead of intelligence, that rape wasn't non-consensual, because the victim 'just went along with it'. I swear, it took everything I had to not beat him to within an inch of his life, screaming "Are you not consenting, or are you just going along with it?"

So, bringing this back out of the realm of rage and back into that of reason, 'If at first ignoring him doesn't work, drop him like a rotting fish".

Seriously. Where the hell do these people form their opinions, anyway? Is there some sort of secret internet chatroom where they propagate that niao-se?

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"And you're really asking me if I prefer injury to embarrassment? That's not even a choice. I don't know anybody who's literally died of embarrassment."

People are annoying sometimes.

Posts: 78 | From: Summerside, PEI, Canada | Registered: Jan 2007  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
TheFlash
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I'm bad, but here's what I do. I get extra dumb and misunderstand everything they say until they get irritated, then I walk away saying I understand and repeat the opposite of what they were trying to tell me to begin with. I learned it from the following Monty Python scene... I'm not sure what good it does, but it's fun.

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King of Swamp Castle: Guards, make sure the prince doesn't leave this room until I come and get him.
Guard #1: Not to leave the room... even if you come and get him.
Guard #2: [hiccups]
King of Swamp Castle: No, no. *Until* I come and get him.
Guard #1: Until you come and get him, we're not to enter the room.
King of Swamp Castle: No, no, no. You *stay* in the room, and make sure *he* doesn't leave.
Guard #1: And you'll come and get him.
Guard #2: [hiccups]
King of Swamp Castle: Right.
Guard #1: We don't need to do anything, apart from just stop him entering the room.
King of Swamp Castle: No, no. *Leaving* the room.
Guard #1: Leaving the room, yes.
King of Swamp Castle: All right?
Guard #2: [hiccups]
Guard #1: Right. Oh, if, if, if, uh, if, if, uh, if, if, if, we... oh, if... oh...
King of Swamp Castle: Look, it's quite simple. You just stay here, and make sure he doesn't leave the room. All right?
Guard #2: [hiccups]
Guard #1: Oh, I remember, uh, can he leave the room with us?
King of Swamp Castle: No, no, no, no, you just keep him in here, and make sure...
Guard #1: Oh yeah, we'll keep him in here, obviously, but if he had to leave, and we were with him...
King of Swamp Castle: No, just keep him in here...
Guard #1: Until you, or anyone else...
King of Swamp Castle: No, not anyone else. Just me.
Guard #1: Just you.
Guard #2: [hiccups]
King of Swamp Castle: Get back.
Guard #1: Get back.
King of Swamp Castle: All right?
Guard #1: Right, we'll stay here until you get back.
King of Swamp Castle: And make sure he doesn't leave.
Guard #1: What?
King of Swamp Castle: Make sure he doesn't leave.
Guard #1: The prince?
King of Swamp Castle: Yes, make sure he doesn't leave.
Guard #1: Oh, yes, of course.
[Points at Guard #2]
Guard #1: I thought you meant him. You know, it seemed a bit daft me I were to guard him when he's a guard.
King of Swamp Castle: Is that clear?
Guard #2: [hiccups]
Guard #1: Oh, quite clear. No problems.
King of Swamp Castle: Right.
[King of Swamp Castle turns to leave the room, both guards follow him]
King of Swamp Castle: Where are you going?
Guard #1: We're coming with you.
King of Swamp Castle: No, no, no. I want you to stay here and make sure *he* doesn't leave.
Guard #1: Oh, I see. Right.

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James the Dark
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For your edification, that's Monty Python's Search for the Holy Grail.

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"And you're really asking me if I prefer injury to embarrassment? That's not even a choice. I don't know anybody who's literally died of embarrassment."

People are annoying sometimes.

Posts: 78 | From: Summerside, PEI, Canada | Registered: Jan 2007  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
reworded
Neophyte
Member # 34213

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for me in high school alot of my peers speak up to me i'm told i'm smart by my friends and my teachers ignore me because i don't need help and are not the best in my class at first i was happy some one found me smart then it became more of a problem people taking my word for things shoving my mistakes in my face and thinking that nothing could get past me i must be right just because i'm "SMART" smart has become a double edged sword for me cutting more often then not.

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when i was little, i wanted to find my prince on a white horse and now i'm allergenic.

Posts: 12 | From: surrey bc | Registered: Jun 2007  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
   

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