Forgive Me For Being So Brash

You’re what keeps me believing that the world’s not gone dead
Strength in my bones, put my words in my head when
they pour out to paper, it’s all for you
‘Coz that’s what you do.

It’s been a pretty wild couple of days. I don’t say that lightly. It’s been an empowering, terrifying and also very tiring couple of days. The problem as well as the point of dragging things out into the light is that you have a lot of ferocity from your supporters, but a lot of people start crawling back out of the woodwork to shut you down again. That is the unfortunate truth of the matter, but I don’t regret what I said or what I did. It’s definitely made me aware that there’s a large world of support out there, even against some of the most vile …well, I hesitate to use the word “people” in this instance. So let’s just go with “flesh bags.” And trust me, there are quite a few. I’ve looked at my referral traffic and Reddit comments and seen some things there that would kill most people.

I want to thank everyone who’s commented, tweeted, blogged and e-mailed me. I’ve gotten a couple offers for podcasts (one of which I’m taking up tonight), permission to be used in academic papers, and had numerous people reblog my words. It feels like I’ve ran this marathon I hadn’t really intended on starting and don’t quite know where it is going. Mental exhaustion has set in somewhat, but I think if I take a couple days off from blogging again, I’ll be right as rain and ready to talk about some other stuff. I’m currently working on a podcast with a friend of mine and that’s been a nice positive thing to focus on, rather than being reminded that shitty things have happened to me. I feel like there’s nothing to hold over my head anymore, and that’s good. Dealing with the fallout is all I have to really batten the hatches down for now.

I really just hope I helped at least one person out with this. That’s all I asked for and I think I’ve gotten more than that by now. Given the number of posts that have sprung up about harassment and bullying, I think I did an okay thing. (I’ll link all of them at the bottom of the post.) I’ve gotten some flack for the radical notion that this is a feminist issue and one that is heavily gendered. Well you know what? It is. It still is. What my personal story was, for me, not just a story of my “mistakes” (as some hilariously terrible Reddit posters put it) but also a spotlight on something that happens to a large portion of women online. What I didn’t say in my post was how that despite having a full-time stalker, I’ve been randomly harassed in Trade Chat, I’ve had people be weird to me all over in WoW or the Internet, simply for being female. Sexist slurs are easy to use against women because that’s what kind of society we live in. This absolutely is a WoW thing, a feminist thing, a sexism thing and don’t let anyone tell you otherwise. Men get harassed and stalked too and I want that to end as well. I don’t want anyone to feel like that they have to suffer this kind of abuse. The problem is that it has gone so unnoticed from women because we’re just expected to roll over and take it. We’re used to having our lives defined by how far men want to intrude in it without our permission. So anyone who says that my post was just about me and my problems wasn’t really looking that hard at me or my blog. But I have a feeling they never really intended to anyways. That’s kinda how this stuff keeps going on – people don’t realize how the world works for other people.

I’ll keep on though. I’ll keep on regardless.

Thanks to:

Vitaemachina – for being the most amazing, ineffable web admin a lady could ever want for or have. He’s been keeping me afloat the last couple of days by taking most of the pressure of screening comments off my shoulders so I could focus on writing. He’s a cool as heck dude and I hope everyone gets blogs with him.

My boyfriend – for holding my hand in the court room, for giving me hugs every time I was frightened or upset, for sharing stories with me to make me laugh, for being by my side and strength.

My guild – for being the most wonderful group of people to play video games with, even when I freak out about shit going on in Trade Chat or need people to come do weird raids with me. You guys make World of Warcraft bearable at the worst times, and amazing at the best. I wouldn’t be playing still if it wasn’t for you guys.

My friends –¬†for being here for me on Twitter, in my real life, and elsewhere on the Internet. You’ve gotten phone calls at strange hours, IMs, texts, RealID whispers and all that jazz. Having a support structure is what helps people out of the shitty morass that is their life sometimes, and you guys are it. I love all of you.

My readers – Old and new, thank you for linking and spreading the word, giving me support. Saying things like that I am brave and courageous, that I’ve endured so much. It makes me feel less alone. Special thanks to Big Bear Butt, The Borderhouse, Gazimoff, MMO Melting Pot, Shamanoholic and Digitally Incorrect who wrote very touching posts about me and sent a bit of traffic my way.

Bullying/Harassment or Related Blog Posts

D/E the Tank! – Bullying: Why My Online Personality isn’t My Real One
Digital Incorrectness – A Wordy Response
Grimmtooth’s Troops – A Word of Appreciation and Support
Mana Obscura – Sub-Humans and the Shallow End of Gaming
MMO Melting Pot – Being Harassed in WoW or Another MMORPG? Here’s What to Do.
The Anxious Gamer – Trust Me
The Big Bear Butt – I Strongly Encourage You To Read This. Please.
The Borderhouse Blog – An Incredibly Brave Story of Cyberbullying and Harassment
Way of the Totem – Why I React So Violently to Bullying, A Personal Story

If anyone else knows any other links that should be thrown up here, comment.