Personal Messages

Any questions or discussions that you ONLY want to discuss with our staff or volunteers.
(Users: please do not reply to other users here.)
idk anymore
not a newbie
Posts: 84
Joined: Tue Dec 15, 2020 7:22 am
My Awesomeness Quotient: I have a pretty good sense of humor
My primary language: English
My pronouns: He/Him
My sexual identity and orientation: Pan, mostly
Location: Epping, NH

Personal Messages

Unread postby idk anymore » Thu Dec 17, 2020 3:15 pm

Hey, y'all moderators I adore so very very much! I haz a question for all's youz guys, gals, and non-binary pals. How do I get permissions to send personal messages to people? There's seemingly a feature that allows me to do it, but it says I don't have permission too. The only reason I ask is because someones profile kind of offends me, and I was wondering if I could talk to them about it, without, ya know, calling them out in front of the entire community. Because that would just be mean, especially, since I very highly doubt that they meant to upset me.
I hate the word homophobia. It's not a phobia. You're not scared. You're an asshole.

~Morgan Freeman

Heather
scarleteen founder & director
Posts: 8545
Joined: Sun Jul 27, 2014 11:43 am
My Awesomeness Quotient: I know every word of The Lorax by heart.
My primary language: english
My pronouns: they/them
My sexual identity and orientation: queery-queer-queer
Location: Chicago

Re: Personal Messages

Unread postby Heather » Thu Dec 17, 2020 4:01 pm

That's not a thing users can use user to user: it's only available to use to contact moderators with. We don't allow that access in order to protect everyone from harassment.

You're certainly welcome to alert us to the issue, however, and we're happy to look into it for you.
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

idk anymore
not a newbie
Posts: 84
Joined: Tue Dec 15, 2020 7:22 am
My Awesomeness Quotient: I have a pretty good sense of humor
My primary language: English
My pronouns: He/Him
My sexual identity and orientation: Pan, mostly
Location: Epping, NH

Re: Personal Messages

Unread postby idk anymore » Thu Dec 17, 2020 5:08 pm

Well that's great! Hey, Heather, your stated sexuality is kind of offensive to me. KIND OF! Note for the beginning, I use the term gay alot. When I say gay, I really just mean people who are attracted to the same gender, this could be bi, pan or many other things. I put a lot of thought into whether this really offended me or not, and how awful of a person it make me. So time for some hypocrisy! The sexual identify you list on your profile is queery-queer-queer. Its fantastic that your so comfortable with your sexual identity that you feel that way! I love how you take things like that so lightly! However, not all of us feel that way. I'm sure you heard the term "flaming" when it comes to gayness. Its an idea that I particularly hate and I feel like your perpetuating, sort of. This concept that most or all gay people are out their in their rainbow suspenders, and cross dressing ensembles. It not only confused trans people with gay people, and just cross dressers with gay people. I hate it. It also shows a side of some gay people that I don't like, however, have learned to tolerate because it's a totally fine thing and it really shouldn't upset me. I hate gay pride. I don't like it on a moral of personal level. Not because I don't like people being proud of who they are, but because it makes people like me look bad. I live in a very politically right wing town. I personally, associate with the republican party on most issues, wear jeans and flannel, and really like the idea of getting off inside of a man, and having other men inside of me. So despite all those things other things that they should like, when people find out I'm pansexual, there's an immediate hatred of me because I'm "like them." Its so hard ya know, and ofc, me being me, decides to fight hate with hate, I'm working on it tho. I think its great that your proud of who you are! I think it's great that you don't feel like you have to hide it! I just don't like that you kinda made it this, draw attention to myself, haha, funny, look at me sort of thing. Queer would have been totally fine. Queery-queer-queer kind of upset me. However, I make jokes out of myself all the time, so I guess I have no place to talk. So all I can do is ask you this, Heather. When you think really long and really hard about calling yourself queery-queer-queer, do you think that's really appropriate and not offensive. if so, then I'll learn to be okay with it, if not, please seriously consider giving it a more serious title. Sorry if that was long and rambling and contradicts itself alot. I still really appreciate you Heather, its just kind of upsetting.
I hate the word homophobia. It's not a phobia. You're not scared. You're an asshole.

~Morgan Freeman

Sam W
scarleteen staff/volunteer
Posts: 7287
Joined: Mon Jul 28, 2014 9:06 am
My Awesomeness Quotient: I raise carnivorous plants
My primary language: english
My pronouns: she/her
My sexual identity and orientation: queer
Location: Desert

Re: Personal Messages

Unread postby Sam W » Fri Dec 18, 2020 10:20 am

Hi idk anymore,

As another queer person (and one living in a very small, conservative town), I have a lot of thoughts on this. But, I think they can be best summed up by a quote from this article: https://www.scarleteen.com/article/advi ... rientation

"Then there’s the question of whether someone playing up their queerness is bad for the queer community as a whole. I experience this question as a trap, one mostly laid by people who want queer identities to stay invisible, and one that queer people sometimes, unfortunately, wind up inadvertently internalizing.

When gay or bi men challenge notions of masculinity by being "too feminine," or butch lesbians reject the male gaze, or queer or gender-nonconforming people just generally make it hard to ignore the diversity of sexualities, it makes a lot of people uncomfortable. It upsets the simple -- and often highly heterocentric and ciscentric -- categories they use to navigate the world. So, they turn to concern-trolling, pointing out that if only queer people would assimilate and "tone it down" maybe more people would accept us. They can suggest that if we act “too queer,” we’re making it seem like our identity as people solely revolves around our sexual orientation, so how can we blame people who judge us based only on our orientation? The problem is the definition of “too queer” is constantly changing and trying to avoid that label can cause queer people to shrink their lives down. It also encourages us to police our behaviors and those of other queer people, often without really knowing we’re doing it. Plus, how can anyone really be "too" queer or not queer enough, or "too" straight or not straight enough, in the first place? Who we all feel we are and what feels right for us in this regard is always exactly right: it has to be, because this is about our own identities, which can't be held to objective or universal standards like that.

It may help to remember that if your friend being very vocal about her orientation causes other people to reduce the queer community down to their sexualities, those people did not have that great a grasp of, or support for, the queer community in the first place. A genuine ally understands that there is no one, correct way for queer people to act or be, and is committed to supporting queer people however how they choose to express that part of themselves. They understand that the queer community is a place where we all meet each other where we are in terms of our identity. I encourage you to move towards a similar understanding when it comes to your friend. There's space for her way of being queer in the community, just as there is space for yours."

idk anymore
not a newbie
Posts: 84
Joined: Tue Dec 15, 2020 7:22 am
My Awesomeness Quotient: I have a pretty good sense of humor
My primary language: English
My pronouns: He/Him
My sexual identity and orientation: Pan, mostly
Location: Epping, NH

Re: Personal Messages

Unread postby idk anymore » Fri Dec 18, 2020 10:35 am

I agree. Mostly. Which is exactly why I said that if Heather thinks what Heather is doing is taking the whole situation serious enough for her, then I will totally respect it. I just wanted to request she put a bit of thought into the matter.
I hate the word homophobia. It's not a phobia. You're not scared. You're an asshole.

~Morgan Freeman

idk anymore
not a newbie
Posts: 84
Joined: Tue Dec 15, 2020 7:22 am
My Awesomeness Quotient: I have a pretty good sense of humor
My primary language: English
My pronouns: He/Him
My sexual identity and orientation: Pan, mostly
Location: Epping, NH

Re: Personal Messages

Unread postby idk anymore » Fri Dec 18, 2020 10:40 am

No one is too much or too little of anything. Except for prejudice, the less of that the better. Either way, I feel that with the situation the queer community is as a whole, right now, isn't a place where the whole topic should be made into a joke, because it reinforces the idea that we aren't to be taken seriously. However, that's just my opinion, and just as I have a right to feel the way I do, so does Heather, and everyone else on this server
I hate the word homophobia. It's not a phobia. You're not scared. You're an asshole.

~Morgan Freeman

idk anymore
not a newbie
Posts: 84
Joined: Tue Dec 15, 2020 7:22 am
My Awesomeness Quotient: I have a pretty good sense of humor
My primary language: English
My pronouns: He/Him
My sexual identity and orientation: Pan, mostly
Location: Epping, NH

Re: Personal Messages

Unread postby idk anymore » Fri Dec 18, 2020 10:44 am

I'm also new to this community. I've only been active for a couple of days, and I'm still learning my place. As time goes on, I'm sure I'll get a much better feel of how to resolve issues like this much more nicely, hopefully where I won't offend so many people
I hate the word homophobia. It's not a phobia. You're not scared. You're an asshole.

~Morgan Freeman

Sam W
scarleteen staff/volunteer
Posts: 7287
Joined: Mon Jul 28, 2014 9:06 am
My Awesomeness Quotient: I raise carnivorous plants
My primary language: english
My pronouns: she/her
My sexual identity and orientation: queer
Location: Desert

Re: Personal Messages

Unread postby Sam W » Fri Dec 18, 2020 11:40 am

I do want to push back on the idea that humor or levity around queerness is somehow delegitimizing us in the eyes of other people. Humor has long been a tactic of queer activism and culture. A really perfect encapsulation of this are some of these buttons from various points in history: https://dangerousminds.net/comments./sa ... gbt_rights. Many of those slogans come from eras were major political and social gains were made, so they demonstrate that humor isn't antithetical to being taken seriously.

Too, as I said in the quote, if someone refuses to support or accept the queer and trans communities because we're not presenting ourselves seriously enough, it's doubtful they were that supportive in the first place.

Since you mention wanting to learn the etiquette of this server, a good general rule (here and elsewhere) is not to ask a person if they've thought about the full implications of how the choose to label and present their identity. It comes across as very concern-trolly at best. Too, take a minute to check people's listed pronouns before referring to them.

idk anymore
not a newbie
Posts: 84
Joined: Tue Dec 15, 2020 7:22 am
My Awesomeness Quotient: I have a pretty good sense of humor
My primary language: English
My pronouns: He/Him
My sexual identity and orientation: Pan, mostly
Location: Epping, NH

Re: Personal Messages

Unread postby idk anymore » Fri Dec 18, 2020 1:38 pm

Will do.
I hate the word homophobia. It's not a phobia. You're not scared. You're an asshole.

~Morgan Freeman

Heather
scarleteen founder & director
Posts: 8545
Joined: Sun Jul 27, 2014 11:43 am
My Awesomeness Quotient: I know every word of The Lorax by heart.
My primary language: english
My pronouns: they/them
My sexual identity and orientation: queery-queer-queer
Location: Chicago

Re: Personal Messages

Unread postby Heather » Mon Dec 21, 2020 12:35 pm

I feel like beyond what Sam has said here, this doesn't feel appropriate to me as a larger public conversation. As I mentioned when you asked about PMs, you do have the ability to use them with moderators, which all staff are, including myself, so I'm a bit confused about why you chose to do this this way given you came in stating that's how you wanted to address this.

At this point though, I think it's gone beyond a larger productive conversation with me, given the foot it started on. All I can really say at this point is that I agree with Sam, and that you should generally figure there isn't much I don't give a great deal of thought with, particularly as someone who has been a queer person for several decades of my life and who makes my living with words. I generally very much mean what I say and say what I mean. I am not just queer, but queer af, a thing I can express in many ways, the way I do on my profile here being one of them. I understand that makes some people uncomfortable, but it's not something I will apologize for.

In the event you're more comfortable talking with other staff rather than with me as a result, that is certainly fine, we always make who users talk to here optional and no one needs a reason.
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


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