Disabled by Culture

This blog is mostly for quotes. The main topics are LGBTQ-stuff, feminism, trauma, dissociation, and child development.

Whereas in the first stage of recovery survivors deal with social adversity mainly by retreating to a protected environment, in the third stage survivors may wish to take the initiative in confronting others. It is at this point that survivors are ready to reveal their secrets, to challenge the indifference or censure of bystanders, and to accuse those who have abused them.

Survivors who grew up in abusive families have often cooperated for years with a family rule of silence. In preserving the family secret, they carry the weight of a burden that does not belong to them. At this point in their recovery, survivors may choose to declare to their families that the rule of silence has been irrevocably broken. In so doing, they renounce the burden of shame, guilt, and responsibility, and place this burden on the perpetrator, where it properly belongs.

Family confrontations or disclosures can be highly empowering when they are properly timed and well planned. They should not be undertaken until the survivor feels ready to speak the truth as she knows it, without need for confirmation and without fear of consequences. The power of the disclosure rests in the act of telling the truth; how the family responds is immaterial. While validation from the family can be gratifying when it occurs, a disclosure session may be successful even if the family responds with unyielding denial or fury. In this circumstance the survivor has the opportunity to observe the family’s behavior and to enlarge her understanding of the pressures she faced as a child.

— Judith Herman, Trauma and Recovery: The aftermath of violence—from domestic abuse to political terror
Finally, the survivor should anticipate and plan for the various possible outcomes of her disclosure. While she may be clear about the desired outcome, she must be prepared to accept whatever the outcome may be. A successful disclosure is almost always followed by both exhilaration and disappointment. On the one hand, the survivor feels surprised at her own courage and daring. She no longer feels intimidated by her family or compelled to participate in destructive family relationships. She is no longer confined by secrecy; she has nothing more to hide. On the other hand, she gains a clearer sense of her family’s limitations.
Judith Herman, Trauma and Recovery: The aftermath of violence—from domestic abuse to political terror


people complain about people “faking disabilities”
you know what happens way more often than people faking disabilities?
people pretending not to be disabled so they won’t get treated like shit

(via dragonsatmidnight)


Please please please stop saying things like “If I had a physical illness instead of a mental one you’d take me seriously!” or literally anything to that effect. 

This is a really common misconception but I have no idea where it comes from as the reaction pretty much all chronic illnesses get, mental or physical, tend to be roughly the same. Some illnesses have more stigma  or are treated with more ableism than others, yes, but as general categories the way they’re treated are the same.

I’ve gotten the exact same comments about both my mental and physical health, including

  • Aren’t you too young to have that?
  • Are you sure those meds wont turn you into a zombie?
  • Did you try yoga?
  • Have you tried sleeping better?
  • Try this diet it’ll totally make you better! 
  • I’m pretty sure thats not a real thing
  • You’re just using that as an excuse
  • no, you’re just lazy/[insert ableist slurs here]. 

Additionally, I’ve been physically sick literally over 5 years and do not have any diagnosis, which is not uncommon. Being physically ill is not some magical difference from being mentally ill where doctors suddenly aren’t ableist towards you, know exactly how to diagnose you, and do so immediately.

Its also not a magical land where people take you seriously, ever. Believe me. I can’t even count the number of times I’ve been told I’m too young to be chronically ill, and I’ve been chronically ill since I was 13 so its like, clearly it can happen a lot younger than 18. and yet I get those comments constantly anyways. 

if you’re mentally ill but otherwise abled PLEASE don’t make these kinds of statements anymore because its just not true. They WOULD and they DO act the exact same ways to ppl who are physically ill. unless you’ve had experience being treated as both physically and mentally ill please stop comparing the two as if you have any idea what its like. you clearly don’t because no, it wouldn’t be different if you were physically ill. it wouldn’t be different at all. 

#ableism #medication 

(via quantumstarlight)

But let’s get something straight: a community pushing back against a murderous police force that is terrorizing them is not a “riot”. It’s an uprising. It’s a rebellion. It’s a community saying We can’t take this anymore. We won’t take it. It’s people who have been dehumanized to the point of rightful rage. And it happens all over the world. Uprisings and rebellions are necessary and inevitable, locally and globally. This is not to say that actual riots don’t happen. White folks riot at sporting events, for example. Riots happen. But people rising up in righteous anger and rage in the face of oppression should not be dismissed as simply a “riot”.

Don’t be distracted by terms like “rioting”. Whether you’re for or against uprising and rebellion (side-eye if you’re against it, though), it’s a tool, not the issue itself. The issue is yet another Black teenager murdered by police. His name was Mike Brown.


ferguson rly teaches a lesson in the lengths police will go to protect each other and white supremacy. they’d rather do all this than arrest one man. 

because he is a cop, and he’s white.

they ‘have each other’s backs’ so doggedly and determinedly that they would sacrifice a town of black people for one white cop

(via kinkyturtle)

Racism is not in your intent. Your intent is immaterial in how racist your actions are. This isn’t about you BEING a racist. It’s about you DOING A THING that is racist. Your intent doesn’t change it. Your ignorance of its meaning doesn’t change it. It’s got nothing to do with you as a person and everything to do with the meaning of your action in the context of sociocultural history.

- moniquill (on red face & cultural appropriation)

I’m just going to reblog this again, since some people apparently need reminding. 

(via darkjez)


(via mirandaadria)

(Source: nishwari, via queeringfeministreality)

So prisons are one aspect of the project of creating a criminal class, which is essential to industrial capitalism. It’s no coincidence that the modern prison system appeared at the time of the industrial revolution. This also explains why recidivism is always a “problem” but never solved: the more distinct the criminal class, the easier it is to control. Once this criminal class is divided from the rest of the population and set at odds with it, all crime is experienced as antisocial, and workers consider their enemies to be the criminals who might steal from them rather than the capitalists who do so constantly.
The term “administrative violence” draws attention to the ways in which systems that organize our lives in seemingly ordinary ways – determining what ID we carry, what government records exist about us, how roads or schools or garbage pick-up are organized – produce and distribute life chances based on violent forms of categorization. The entire framework of US administrative law is that we have agencies – whether it’s the Department of Homeland Security or the Food and Drug Administration or the Environmental Protection Agency or the Bureau of Indian Affairs – run by experts. These experts invent and deploy categories that manage and sort people, substances, buildings, curricula, human capacities, diseases, financial instruments, streets, soils, vehicles, and more. These administrators need not be elected; the basis of their authority, and thus the authority of the administrative system, is neutral expertise. Critical movements have questioned the neutrality of those ways of knowing and the categories they produce, identifying white supremacist, ableist, colonial, and patriarchal norms.


capitalism: create an impoverished homeless class, then enact laws and physical barriers so you don’t have to see what you’ve created

(via morositree)

We live in a society that’s sexist in ways it doesn’t understand. One of the consequences is that men are extremely sensitive to being criticized by women. I think it threatens them in a very primal way, and male privilege makes them feel free to lash out.

This is why women are socialized to carefully dance around these issues, disagreeing with men in an extremely gentle manner. Not because women are nicer creatures than men. But because our very survival can depend on it.

No skin thick enough: The daily harassment of women in the game industry

The whole article sadly hits very close to home.

(via rosalarian)

(via fearlessfeminism)

I’d like you to remember the last time you found it difficult to give an explicit “no” to somebody in a non-sexual context. Maybe they asked you to do them a favour, or to join them for a drink. Did you speak up and say, outright, “No?” Did you apologise for your “no?” Did you qualify it and say, “Oh, I’m sorry, I can’t make it today?” If you gave an outright “no,” what privileged positions do you occupy in society, and how does your answer differ from the answers of people occupying more marginalised positions?

This form of refusal was analysed in 1999 by Kitzinger and Frith (K&F) in Just Say No? The Use of Conversation Analysis in Developing a Feminist Perspective on Sexual Refusal. Despite the seeming ambiguity in question/refusal acts like, “We were wondering if you wanted to come over Saturday for dinner,” “Well, uhh, it’d be great but we promised Carol already,” they are widely understood by the participants as straightforward refusals.

K&F conclude by saying that, “For men to claim [in a sexual context] that they do not ‘understand’ such refusals to be refusals (because, for example, they do not include the word ‘no’) is to lay claim to an astounding and implausible ignorance of normative conversational patterns.”

Under Duress: Agency, Power, and Consent

(via home-of-amazons)

This is a really interesting application of conversation analysisan approach to interpersonal interaction, which is used across linguistics, sociology, anthropology, speech-communication and psychology. 

You can find out more about this particular study here.

(via womenaresociety)

(Source: dragonsupremacy, via raposadanoite)

You shouldn't have to be perfect to 'qualify' as a rape victim

The Norwegian criminologist Nils Christie defined the ideal or “perfect” victim as “a person or category of individuals who … most readily are given the complete and legitimate status of being a victim”. They are typically seen as virtuous, weak in relation to the offender, and blameless for whatever happened to them (the most ideal, he hypothesised, being a middle-aged woman visiting her ill mother).

When women in particular do not meet this standard, their status as “real” and “deserving” victims is undermined; they are imperfect victims. This happens throughout the criminal justice system to a variety of victims, but it is particularly active in cases of abuse and sexual and domestic violence.

For example, in order for battered women to truly be viewed as the victims of their abusive partners within criminal legal discourse, they must conform to the battered victim stereotype of being faithful partners, devoted mothers if they have children, and meek and passive in the face of violence. If they fail, they are not truly victims; they are instead “undeserving viragos”.

Similarly, to qualify for “true” victimhood, women raped by strangers must not have engaged in “risk-taking behaviour” such as walking home alone at night, wearing revealing clothing, being intoxicated, or doing anything that could be perceived as “sexualised”.

This loaded application of the “victim” label denies women the prerogative to exercise their agency; that is the ability to choose their actions and behaviours. In fact, it imagines agency and victimhood as by definition incompatible.