Any tips?

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Sam W
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Re: Any tips?

Unread postby Sam W » Thu Nov 21, 2019 9:24 am

Hi Sky,

If you've been struggling with feelings of low self-worth lately, it makes a lot of sense that seeking help or getting support makes you feel bad, or like the people offering the support are upset with you. The same voice in your head that is saying all those bad things about you can be very, very good at convincing you that help isn't something you should get. That's part of why it can be so difficult to break the cycle of negative self talk, and also a reason to keep utilizing mental health resources when you can, even when the unpleasant part of your brain makes a fuss.

It's okay if you want to keep posting here, just like it would be equally okay if you took a break from the space. Part of why Heather made the suggestions they did above (and why we've set limits before around things like not being able to offer mental health support) is so that this can continue to be a space where both you feel safe posting and others feel safe reading.

sky
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Re: Any tips?

Unread postby sky » Thu Nov 21, 2019 3:29 pm

This happened again today and it unfortunately wasn’t the first time.

What do I do when men tell me they sleep with lesbians and the girl likes it or that they can play with toys too or that they can make me like men or something along those lines.

It pisses me off but it also makes me uncomfortable and I don’t really know how to act.

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Re: Any tips?

Unread postby Heather » Thu Nov 21, 2019 3:57 pm

It should piss you off, it's a garbage thing to do.

Can I ask what context this happened in? Was this on the street? At work? At a bar? Your friends? In social media? How you respond usually is going to depend on the context.
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

sky
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Re: Any tips?

Unread postby sky » Thu Nov 21, 2019 4:38 pm

It was work. By a man who is twice my age who makes comments about asking me on dates and tells me how beautiful I am and who talks about my ass to other people and says I have the best ass in the store.

He said “you just have to get out there because I met a girl and she said she was lesbian I said ‘I am too, we don’t have to have sex I can do anything you want me too without having sex’ and I did and it was awesome! I know how to play with toys too” that’s what was said and it was brought on by me saying this girl was so beautiful, so I guess I provoked it by saying my sexuality out loud but it’s still not something I wanna hear.

The other time, I told my ex (he was my boyfriend on and off for like 7 months) I told him I was not into him anymore I couldn’t pretend anymore and I was into girls and he told me that I was basically straight then because “girls just use toys that act as penises”.

I’ve been told by others that I just think im like this because I haven’t been with a guy, and that guys can make me forget girls, and so on. It’s very frustrating and it makes me so mad!!

Some guys can’t fathom the fact that things don’t have to include them! I like the thought of sex with a girl because of about a million reason, I like the thought of sex with a man because an orgasm. I wouldn’t like him if he had sex with me!!!!!! I don’t understand it!!!! It makes me so mad and upset because it makes me start to question it all.

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Re: Any tips?

Unread postby Heather » Thu Nov 21, 2019 4:53 pm

Okay, so at work, a co-worker hitting on you, period, is sexual harassment. We have a new piece that does a great job letting you know exactly what to do about it right here: https://www.scarleteen.com/article/abus ... _workplace

And just for the record, saying you are lesbian is not "provoking" harassment. His harassment is his doing and fault, not yours. However, moving forward, this person is clearly not someone you'll want to tell things to like you did. He's shown you he's not someone safe for you to share things like that with. I'd follow the advice in the piece above, and then I'd do all you can to get and stay away from this person. By all means, I'd not socialize with him in any way.

You're right, straight, cis guys can be super shitty about women who are unavailable to them. They, like so many people, can also be homophobic and misogynistic and this kind of stuff is very much a manifestation of both. And yes, both homophobia and misogyny are maddening, to say the least.

Suffice it to say, when we're not talking about a work situation, my best advice is just to shut down and get and stay away from men who act like this. They're showing you who they are and they're showing you that they're crummy people. I'm sorry you've had to take all of this in, it's really toxic and demoralizing.
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

sky
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Re: Any tips?

Unread postby sky » Thu Nov 21, 2019 5:04 pm

I know it’s harassment and i will never ever say anything about it again to anyone. I reported someone a few months ago for a bunch of things that made me feel very scared. He never talked to me again, he told everyone I reported him, and he was suspended for 2 days over it and he can’t work in my department.

I need to put up with it and I need to realize that I just need to stay in the closet or whatever the term is. Like just let people assume I’m straight or whatever, idk if you know what I mean.

It’s just an exhausting fight to fight. I feel like saying I’m lesbian is a way to get me into a safe situation but then the guy just gets turned on by it and continues to bother me. Sometimes I get very scared. It happens to me so often. I’ve been harassed by a woman before as well, that made me feel scared too. But men scare me. I feel so powerless. Like the one I reported would hold my hand a lot and I would just stand there with tears coming out of my eyes letting him hold it because I completely froze. It’s like I am so weak to them and they know it so it keeps happening!!!

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Re: Any tips?

Unread postby Siân » Fri Nov 22, 2019 6:32 am

You should never have to put up with harassment. I'm glad that the last time you reported someone it was taken seriously and that your work took steps to keep you safe. Honestly, he was behaving super out of line so the fact he then stopped talking to you sounds like a GOOD thing to me. Well done for standing up for yourself and reporting back then!

It is, of course, up to you whether you talk to someone about this latest incident of harassment from another person, but please don't feel like it's something you have to stay silent about. You deserve to feel safe, and no-one deserves a free pass for harassing you or anyone else.

Yes, the fight is exhausting. I wish I could make it go away overnight but I just can't. I know how awful it is to feel frozen and powerless, I've been there, most women I know have - including the incredibly intimidating kick-ass ones. It doesn't make you weak, it's just your body going into panic mode and shutting down because it can't think of a better way to keep you safe. Heather is right, people who make you feel like that are people to stay away from as much as possible.

sky
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Re: Any tips?

Unread postby sky » Fri Nov 22, 2019 7:10 am

Is there a way I can make it stop? Like I don’t talk to these people sometimes but then they just come up to me anyways to check on me because I’m quite and then they get me to smile and then they just talk about how great my smile is.

I’ve talked to my therapist about it when I was able to see her and I told her that I did the cutting sometimes because it would make me feel ugly and if I felt ugly they would see that and leave me alone. It doesn’t work! I’ve tried to not wear makeup around them, They still bother me.

No matter how gross or ugly I feel there’s some man whose harassing me. I use the lesbian thing to get them away but you know, nicely saying that I am not interested. I’ve even lied that I have a significant other, they still do it.

How do I like make it stop or make myself feel safer when it does? Just like on the street this shit happens to me too. I’m not even pretty like girls are pretty, I’m interesting looking compared to the girls you see all the time that make your heart race, I don’t understand why they bother me.

Sam W
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Re: Any tips?

Unread postby Sam W » Fri Nov 22, 2019 8:26 am

An unfortunate reality about sexual harassment is that it has far more to do with power than with attraction. As you've learned, trying to make yourself less conventionally attractive or less feminine doesn't deter people who think they have a right to your space and your body. Ultimately, it's not on you to make it stop, and sadly in many ways you're the not the person who can stop it.

Thinking about how to make yourself feel safer is a sound step, if only because it's a way to focus on your needs and actions you can actually take. How someone cares for themselves or feels safer after harassment has a lot to do with the person and the situation. For instance, with street harassment, some people find that knowing safe places along their normal routes helps them feel more in control. With something like harassment in your work or social circle, taking whatever steps are available to keep the harasser away from you, including letting other people know what's happening, can help you build an environment that's safer to you.

Since this is already something you've brought up with your therapist, it might be helpful for the two of you two brainstorm other ways you can take care of yourself when these incidents happen. Have you two ever done planning like that before?

sky
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Re: Any tips?

Unread postby sky » Fri Nov 22, 2019 10:24 am

That’s so smart, I’ve never really understood that it’s that they think they have a right to my body and space. Thank you for putting that together for me.

Her and I don’t really get to brainstorm much because I talk so much about a million different topics in one session and she’ll just tell me to try and ground myself typically.

I feel like no matter what I do it’s my fault. Sometimes I don’t even say anything at all and comments I don’t want are being told to me but somehow I feel like it’s my fault. Maybe the way I was walking made my hips shake and I was flaunting my ass and he thought I did it on purpose or something. It’s like it always circles back to me and I feel like I am not doing anything to make it stop even tho I’m trying everything at the same time.

Sam W
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Re: Any tips?

Unread postby Sam W » Fri Nov 22, 2019 11:20 am

I'm glad framing it that way was helpful! It's really, really common for people who experience harassment to circle back to blaming themselves. Part of that is that we still live in a culture that is pretty big on blaming the victim, so we grow up hearing a lot of messages that suggest that if only a person did x, y, or z, the bad thing would not have happened to them. But, trying to figure out what you did to cause it can also be a way of looking for control; there's that feeling that if only you could figure out what you were doing "wrong" you could stop it from happening again.

As much as you can, try practicing not blaming yourself or wondering what you did to cause harassment when it occurs, because the true answer is that harassment is caused by people who think they have a right to the space of others. It could be helpful to practice, either on your own or with your therapist, affirmations or other ways you can redirect that self-blaming mindset when it pops up.

sky
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Re: Any tips?

Unread postby sky » Fri Nov 22, 2019 11:43 am

Thank you so much.

One more thing, I don’t really believe in the whole everyone’s a victim thing because sometimes it can be really derogatory when certain people say it, there is victims but that’s not all they are, if that makes sense what I’m trying to say. I feel like I have victim stamped on my forehead and that’s why men keep doing it, is that like a real thing or is it just something else I’ve made up in my head?

sky
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Re: Any tips?

Unread postby sky » Fri Nov 22, 2019 3:49 pm

Hey all. I want to just apologize for coming in here. I’m so so sorry I’ve been talking a lot and been a pain in the ass. I’m sorry I came here for something I should have been able to figure out myself but never was able to. Thank you for validating my gender confusion and my sexuality and my breakdowns and me being stubborn. I’m so seriously sorry that any of you had to come across my path. But I’m super grateful for all of you that I’ve talked too.

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Re: Any tips?

Unread postby Mo » Fri Nov 22, 2019 5:28 pm

There's no need to apologize for posting a lot, sky! We're here to help you talk through what's on your mind and you aren't being a pain by asking questions and talking with us.

I will say that sometimes people who've experienced abuse or harassment in the past can be more likely to experience it in the future, but the reasons for that aren't as simple as there being a hidden "victim!!" sign flashing above you.

Some people who've experienced abuse feel a lot of shame about it and that shame might keep them from seeking help if they wind up in another abusive situation, for example; they might think things like "if I wound up with an abusive partner again I must deserve it this time" or "this is better than my last relationship so maybe it doesn't count as abuse." I don't think either of these things are true, mind you, but a history of abuse can make it harder for some folks to stand up for themselves or leave abusive situations in the future.

sky
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Re: Any tips?

Unread postby sky » Fri Nov 22, 2019 6:25 pm

Yeah I don’t know why I get so bothered and upset when I get harassed or abused in relationships or in life because I always think I deserve it because abuse is love and that’s how I’ve been shown love my whole life, by my mom.

sky
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Re: Any tips?

Unread postby sky » Fri Nov 22, 2019 8:50 pm

I told my brother (trans they/him, used to be my sister) that I was genderfluid and last night their wife and me and our mom went to dinner and I said something that’s always bothered me and they said that’s a gender thing, I hate when people talk about my hormones when I breakout on my period or something or when I randomly cry.

I asked today what that meant they said that they think I am genderqueer because that bothers me. I was like it’s genderfluid! Haha. So can I be she/them? Is that a real thing?

sky
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Re: Any tips?

Unread postby sky » Sat Nov 23, 2019 12:05 am

I’m drunk and high and I’m an S.E.X. Ian and imnjindioey I loved Dirksen andbimnsrondrinki mnsonsory sorry

sky
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Re: Any tips?

Unread postby sky » Sat Nov 23, 2019 7:28 am

Hey sorry. I’m not fully sober but I’m trying my best here I don’t know what I was trying to say and I don’t know how to delete it. I don’t know what I drank and smoked but I was forced To go by security. IM so fucked if I don’t think I was doing ghingsbthatsb I should have been something was like laced. I hit my head so hard and I almost kissed a girl I was so close and she gave me her number but I don’t known where it is and I’m sad about that

sky
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Re: Any tips?

Unread postby sky » Sat Nov 23, 2019 8:46 am

My aunt is so mad at me for last night I don’t know how to fix it how do I ruin everything. I just wanted to forget stuff. I feel like I was drugged because I am not okay and I wasn’t last night either. I’m sorry I wish I knew how to delete things. I just wanted to be normal and happy

Sam W
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Re: Any tips?

Unread postby Sam W » Sat Nov 23, 2019 9:35 am

Hi Sky,

It sounds like you already know that posting here while under the influence wasn't a good call, so I'm not going to belabor that point. But, if you know you tend to post things you regret when under the influence (here or elsewhere), it may be helpful to figure out a plan ahead of time on steps you can take to avoid that the next time you go out (like having a friend hold onto the phone for you).

If you think something you drank last night was spiked, then a sound next step is to go to a healthcare provider and explain the situation. A lot of substances used to spike drinks leave the body within 72 hours, although some take only 12 hours, so if this is a step you want to take you'll need to go sooner rather than later.

When someone is angry with you, especially if you're already dealing with feelings of low self-worth, it can feel like you've ruined everything. But, in most cases, there's room for that conflict to be resolved or, at the very least, for you to apologize if something you did actually hurt someone. You mention not knowing how to fix things. Does this feel like a situation where an apology is a good starting point?

sky
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Re: Any tips?

Unread postby sky » Sat Nov 23, 2019 9:57 am

I think it was the weed I smoked. She random person had it and I took a few hits. I’m not a big smoker but I know it’s not supposed to make me feel like that. I don’t even know how I got home. Who I was talking too. What I was saying. It’s honestly a little scary. But no I don’t have insurance so it’s not worth it, if I had insurance I would be getting my head checked because I hit it so hard.

I apologized to her a lot and she said she needs time to process because she’s disappointed in me and she’s very sad about it.

Sam W
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Re: Any tips?

Unread postby Sam W » Sat Nov 23, 2019 10:42 am

If you're worried about a head injury, it would be sound to look into what are your options are for low cost care to get it checked out. Have you ever looked into those resources for other health things?

I think, then, your aunt has told you what she needs for the time being, and the best thing you can do for that situation is to give her the time and space she needs, and look after yourself in the meantime.

sky
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Re: Any tips?

Unread postby sky » Sat Nov 23, 2019 10:47 am

I will be ok. I just really am not happy with myself and I don’t remember a lot but I remember feeling scared because I was completely belligerent.

I want someone to make me feel better and no one is everyone just is mad at me. I do it to stop my head and to make me happy and to make me feel normal. I will never ever be normal I’m a fucking freak and it’s sad to me that I’ll never be able to feel okay no matter what I drink or smoke. I’ve looked to so many different things for comfort but then I just end up still liking girls and still being confused about my gender. It doesn’t make sense to me. I just want to be normal

Sam W
scarleteen staff/volunteer
Posts: 6743
Joined: Mon Jul 28, 2014 9:06 am
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Re: Any tips?

Unread postby Sam W » Sat Nov 23, 2019 11:40 am

So, since it sounds like you're falling into a negative self-talk loop, which is something we've talked about and set boundaries around, a sound next step would be to reach out to some mental health support resources. You deserve to feel supported and heard, and a way to do that is to reach out to people who are trained to help you through those negative thoughts and give you tools to deal with them.

We can talk more about those feelings around your sexual orientation and gender identity, especially those worries about how this relates to wanting to be normal. But right now it seems like the priority needs to be connecting with resources that can help with the more pressing mental health things you're dealing with.

sky
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Re: Any tips?

Unread postby sky » Sat Nov 23, 2019 11:51 am

I’m working on getting into my therapist. I go in a couple weeks again :)

I feel like my gender and everything is just not valid. And I can’t find much online about it. It’s like, if someone called me a boy I wouldn’t mind, when people call me a girl I don't mind and if someone called me they or them I wouldn’t mind. I am a girl but I also don’t want to be labeled as just a girl when my fluidity is back and forth.


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