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[personal profile] happydog1960
There are some things that are not recoverable for me. They are my personal equivalent of the swastika. Yes, we all know that the swastika is a good luck symbol in many cultures around the world, and originally represents the sun and its rays, but the symbol has been so damaged that  it is non-recoverable. Certain things are like that for me.

I was trying to listen to the most recent "Elemental Castings" and I had to stop because I cannot get past my reaction to the word "queer." Queer, to me, is a hate word. In high school and especially in junior high, I was bullied a lot, and one of the words most often used to bully me was the word "queer." I have no positive connotations for that word and I cannot reclaim it. For me, the word has the same weight and ugliness as "n****r." To hear people saying it over and over doesn't make it better, it makes it worse; I become unable to hear what the person is saying due to a rising tide of anger and shame, an inner voice that screams "STOP SAYING THAT," whether I want it to or not. I can't recontextualize it or make it better in my mind. I can't fix it. The word is an abomination to me.

One of the other things that is hard for me is teasing. I do not come from a family who teases. My family does not tease each other or other people at all. They never have. The first time I ran into teasing was in school, and I didn't understand it and had no response. But it was used to harm, mock and belittle. Teasing was used as a weapon on me. It hurt a lot, and still does. Unless I have a really clear context for teasing, that is, unless I am looking you in the face and I know you are joking, I react badly to teasing. I don't know how to take it. I react to it by withdrawing, as I did in school, or by lashing out in anger, which I also did when I was driven to extremes and I couldn't escape the teasing. That happened a lot more than I want to talk about.

This is how I am. I don't make any apologies for how I am. I have reasons to be the way I am. I don't expect the world to cater to my flaws, but I want to explain why I don't do these things. I think that no matter what I say, people are going to use the word "queer," and I will always flinch and withdraw. I will never be absolutely sure what to say or do when someone teases me, especially in a context where I can't see your face. And honestly, even if I can see your face, even if I can see you smiling, there will be a part of me that will not read your smile as friendship; it will be read as the kind of smile that junior high and high school bullies get on their faces when they realize they have found a victim. Not the smile of a friend, but the smirk of a bully.

I don't know why I am laying this out in public, but I felt like I had to. I don't expect the world to change to accommodate me. But I want people to know why I react the way I do.

Date: 2012-05-14 05:52 am (UTC)
From: [personal profile] nytemuse
I was raised in a family that DID (and does) tease. I was all fine with it until some point somewhere in my past where I somehow acquired the conviction that all teasing has at its heart a kernel of truth. I.E., if someone teases one about being late to an event, that someone on some level has noted and is bothered by the tardiness.

I still don't know from where I got this idea, though I wish I did, and could erase it from all memory. As a result, there IS no such thing as "innocent" teasing for me, and because I did it for so long, I still do it automatically and then hate myself for it later.

Date: 2012-05-23 10:36 am (UTC)
From: [personal profile] elinor
Me too. I know people go on about teasing being the hallmark of a loving family, and all I can think is, really? You honestly think that? But then I was the butt of everyone's jokes from 4 until my teens because I reacted so spectacularly and so satisfyingly.

The 'q' word is one I find really useful and like a lot, but I will do my best to use other words when you and I are in direct conversation. :-/

Date: 2012-05-14 10:23 pm (UTC)
eldriwolf:  green Dragon (Chris)
From: [personal profile] eldriwolf
***Sometimes I hate humans....
we can corrupt *anything*, make any emotion into manipulation and abuse.

**I am sorry the 'Q' word squicks you, and will try to avoid it.
I am sad that you, like so many of us, were bullied for being different

Teasing (like tickling)*can* be bullying. And, its Awful.

--It can also be almost the only way an emotionally shut down person can say, "I love you.".

Almost none of my red-neck kin could give a hug, or say 'those words'---so there was teasing, and mud-fights, and pranks.

It took me Years to figure it out.
Now, I can feel a little sorry for them, because *I* think that 'real hugs' and open feeling are better.
But I am not going to try and impose My values.
Some folks *Do Not Like* or want hugs--and that is their Right.
(and, the 'A-frame' hugs my uncles will now give, when my Aunts Insist---are awkward,uncomfortable for all, and just sad, somehow..)

Blessings to you,and,
Good Hunting!

Date: 2012-05-23 10:38 am (UTC)
From: [personal profile] elinor
Ugh, tickling. *shudders* In junior school (Elementary school in US?) the whole class of 28 would gang up on me and tickle me. ugh.


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