[CN: Anxiety, Misogyny]
It started back in April. The North Carolina bathroom bill triggered me so badly that I went to two atheist feminist groups on Facebook and asked what to do when you just want to give up activism. Some of the posts were helpful, but others called me out for making everyone in the group use up their spoons to coddle me. In a fit of anger, I left both groups and wrote an angry blog post calling out toxic feminists. Some MRA-types commented on it, but I didn’t pay attention because I felt I was in the right.
Until yesterday when someone called me out on that post on a friend’s Facebook wall. I wrote a blog post apologizing for it, but I got called out again for not taking full responsibility. That’s when I had one of the most intense anxiety attacks I had ever experienced in my life. I was in total fight or flight mode, and I chose flight instead of rationally taking everyone’s comments into consideration. I deleted both the apology post and the toxic feminists post, and I blocked the people calling me out.
After talking to a friend about it this morning, though, I realized what I did was wrong. I let my emotions take over and acted childish, and for that I am sorry.
So here I am coming clean.
I apologize for making others spend extra energy coddling me instead of doing social justice work.
I apologize for not taking full responsibility for my actions, and instead projecting my crap onto others.
I apologize for letting MRAs dominate the comment section and spread their sexist ideology. And I apologize for interacting with them and encouraging them.
I apologize for my original half-assed apology where I only pretended to be sorry.
I apologize for blocking people on Facebook who were trying to explain to me that I wasn’t taking full responsibility for my actions.
I apologize for playing the victim and throwing a pity party on Facebook.
For now, I’m going to temporarily step back from doing online activism for a month. Don’t worry; I’m not quitting. I just need some serious introspection while I unpack all my internalized misogyny. I’m not even going to upload a new episode of my podcast until next month.
Being a good activist means sometimes you have to step away and take a good long hard look at yourself. We like to brag about how “woke” we are, but the truth is we’re all still waking. The events of this past weekend definitely proved that to me.
When I come back, I hope to be a better activist, a better ally, and a better human being.