The charming young man who was trying to downplay harassment and bullying as causes for PTSD versus the young woman who liked my original article?
Reading this, I’m shocked and distressed that you could have had such a harsh life, and it breaks my heart that the universe can deal such a raw hand to somebody. I’m surprised you let this guy get away, it seems like you have more than enough evidence to get him in jail, or at least a restraining order.
You made an important distinction; ‘causing’ PTSD vs. ‘triggering’ PTSD. After WWI, from the first large-scale use of artillery in combat, soldiers were so shaken by the experience that simply the sight of a uniform would send them in to fits of paroxysmal terror. Saying someone got PTSD from seeing a uniform is hugely different than getting PTSD from ruptured eardrums and shrapnel while watching your friends die in the mud and having it TRIGGERED by a uniform, just like saying you got PTSD from Twitter is different from getting PTSD from being beaten, raped and tortured but having it TRIGGERED by twitter. I may not be a doctor, but I am a skeptic. I judge as best I can from what knowledge I have- you don’t need to be a meteorologist to doubt someone saying it’s raining apple juice. As for the tragedy of being caught ‘Female in Public,’ that’s something else that annoys me. I don’t claim to know the experience that different genders have, but you do. All throughout high school/college, I was so lonely and miserable and desperate for attention that I would have paid money to endure the harassment you complain about. It continues to irk me when women demand compassion because ‘you don’t know what it’s like for everyone around you to want sex with you and want your attention and want you to like them and try to be a part of your life.’ Do you know how insensitive that sounds to male ears? How much better a guy’s life would have to be to have problems like that? Like someone complaining to a starving child how awful it is that my french fries are too salty. The fact that there are assholes, selfish people and monsters in the world isn’t contingent on gender- my penis hasn’t protected me from the abuse of strangers, and assuming it would seems the height of ignorant sexism (according to any dictionary, which SJWs know are all wrong). Guys are stupid, and guys like girls, and guys will do crazy things to get with girls, but what you’re complaining about revolves around complete strangers giving a shit about you beyond what most men expect in their lives. Freezing to death isn’t much better than burning.
Which brings me to something else; equality. What ruffles so many feathers is the hypocrisy of the movement; demanding equality, but tossing it aside as soon as it’s convenient. YOU get ‘safe spaces.’ Somehow these ‘strong communities’ are threatened by the handful of neck beards going ‘wait a second, back when there were smoking clubs n’ stuff, gender-exclusive groups were bad and evil and shouldn’t be allowed, but now that you want one it’s okay?’ Your ‘strong female-oriented’ groups cry oppression when their opinions aren’t protected from scrutiny. The only community I’ve ever seen on the internet devoted to issues men face is /r/mensrights , and they have/r/againstmensrights , an ENTIRE SUB devoted ENTIRELY to dismissing, trolling, discrediting and attacking that sub. Which doesn’t count as oppression.
Speaking of equality; you know why there are so many angry men online? Men get ignored. They go through life dismissed, isolated, without any real emotional connections. They hear women complain about getting too much of what men rarely get enough of, and then demanding pity for it. For all you complain about the horrors of being ‘Female In Public,’ you know what it’s like to have people care about you. If you were hurt, or sad, or suffering, you could expect help and compassion that are foreign for most men. For all the demands of equality, someone with PTSD from Twitter getting more sympathy and compassion than hundreds of homeless vets with PTSD from active combat somehow isn’t hypocritical. I’ve had a good life as a male, but there are millions out there who would gladly get raped in exchange for knowing what it’s like to have society care about you by default.
Which, really, is the root of the online hatred. Most (re; all) of these trolls aren’t upstanding, productive members of society. They are the rejects, the doormats, the downtrodden, the outsiders, who would probably shoot up schools if they didn’t have this outlet. These guys know nothing about women but frustration and rejection- ‘I offered her money and she looked at me like I was a jerk,’ ‘I offered her weed but she just wanted change,’ ‘I tried to say hello but she put on headphones and ignored me.’ This manifests as online misogyny: these people find a place with anonymity, a great equalizer, where they aren’t noticed or ignored anymore, where they can speak freely and have as much attention as anyone else. Then someone shows up grabbing attention going “I’m a girl, btw,” and it’s like a spark on gunpowder. These women, who go through life protected, cherished, admired, knowing there will always be people willing to defend them by virtue of their gender, intruding into the ‘safe space’ for creeps who just want to be treated as equals for once. Women who advertise their gender in a bid for special treatment are striking a blow against equality, and the blowback from it is the purest form of privilege-checking.
That’s why I love the internet- beautiful, vast, equalizing, unregulated, like the wild west. There are so many deviants, counter-culturals, sociopaths, eccentrics, rejects- it’s like a prison, insane asylum, and zoo all in one! Like tapping into the collective subconscious of humanity. And, yes, if you can’t handle scat porn, animal torture, furry bondage, pedophilia, bronies and misogyny, then you should tread very carefully. Damn right I’m cavalier, and you should be too. You’re allowed to want gender equality, and you’re allowed to want to prune down the internet’s freedom of expression to make it safer for women, but doing both costs your movement a lot of credibility.
I’m in MA and the weather is gorgeous today, I hope you get outside some.
This is pretty much precisely how not to do anything to someone telling you a heartfelt story about their trauma.