The Box Ticker

bimassageguy:

sfgemt:
and here is my commentary
The same things are said to bisexuals and let me add a few more to this list from “our” point of view:
 "In a room full of people, who are you more attracted to,  men or women?"   My answer,  “both”.
 ”It’s always an easy choice right?”  Meaning you must prefer  one sex over the other.  My answer,  “no, it is not easy.  You usually end up following the course of least resistance so you don’t go home alone.  Sometimes that’s a man sometimes that’s a woman.  If you get lucky, you get both.”
 ”What percentage of the people you date are men and what percentage are women? ”  My response,   ”If you answer anything but 50/50, then you fail their bisexual test.”
"Which sex acts do you enjoy more, those you do with men or those you do with women?"   My answer, ” I do the same things to women that I do to men.  There might just be a different body part involved.”
and the most annoying question of all:  "So when you say you are bisexual that means you are gay right?"   My answer,  ”absolutely not, it means I am bisexual.  Bisexual is not code for gay.”
more signage

Totally agree! I made another poster regarding biphobia as well, if you’re interested. :)
http://the-box-ticker.tumblr.com/post/62138067890/five-things-you-should-know-about-bisexuals

bimassageguy:

sfgemt:

and here is my commentary

  1. The same things are said to bisexuals and let me add a few more to this list from “our” point of view:
  2.  "In a room full of people, who are you more attracted to,  men or women?"   My answer,  “both”.
  3.  ”It’s always an easy choice right?”  Meaning you must prefer  one sex over the other.  My answer,  “no, it is not easy.  You usually end up following the course of least resistance so you don’t go home alone.  Sometimes that’s a man sometimes that’s a woman.  If you get lucky, you get both.”
  4.  ”What percentage of the people you date are men and what percentage are women? ”  My response,   ”If you answer anything but 50/50, then you fail their bisexual test.”
  5. "Which sex acts do you enjoy more, those you do with men or those you do with women?"   My answer, ” I do the same things to women that I do to men.  There might just be a different body part involved.”
  6. and the most annoying question of all:  "So when you say you are bisexual that means you are gay right?"   My answer,  ”absolutely not, it means I am bisexual.  Bisexual is not code for gay.”

more signage

Totally agree! I made another poster regarding biphobia as well, if you’re interested. :)

http://the-box-ticker.tumblr.com/post/62138067890/five-things-you-should-know-about-bisexuals

An Adventure in Symbiotic Butterflies

Decided to post my ramblings about mood swings with #EUPD (#BPD) - “An Adventure in Symbiotic Butterflies”

I wrote the following last September, about a month before I went into hospital for the second time. I intended to give it to my therapist to help her understand what I couldn’t explain in person, but was unable to due to social anxiety. Thankfully, several months down the line, I received a diagnosis (of several) that helped make sense of my emotions –  Emotionally Unstable Personality…

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stacybias:

The 12 Good Fatty Archetypes —

I’ve just completed a comic blog post about the 12 ‘Good Fatty’ Archetypes. It’s a critical examination of how ‘good’ behavior becomes problematic when it’s used to justify a bid for social legitimacy. Click through to read the full post! http://stacybias.net/2014/06/12-good-fatty-archetypes/

I recorded a little message in my capacity as Voice of Mind, on behalf of the mental health charity Mind for their General Election campaign. Video features cats.

I’ve written more about the campaign here:

http://theboxticker.wordpress.com/2014/06/22/an-adventure-in-mind-gnomes/

And you should totally all email your MPs here:

http://mind.org.uk/about-us/policies-issues/in-parliament/general-election-2015/mind-supporters/

Thank you!

An Adventure in Diagnosing Monsters

Like the majority of people, I spend a lot of my time either doing Things or avoiding doing Things.

Things

Of the Things I avoid doing, sorting out my health and its consequences is one of the more arduous tasks. I have to manage commitments based on unknown levels of stamina, apologise a lot for illness I have little control over, apply for money to survive on while not being well enough to complete the application… Actually being unwell (and, heaven forbid, recovering) hardly gets a look in.

One of my least favourite parts of this process is offering up a legitimate explanation for my illness. Frequently, there isn’t a short-cut way of explaining symptoms. Without a simple way to explain my absences, actions and anxieties, other people are prone to misunderstanding. And with misunderstanding comes pity, disbelief and resentment.

Welcome to the world of the undiagnosed.

Undiagnosed World

When I was nine years old, I found a monster under my bed. Around the age of eleven, I acquired another. By the time I’d hit thirteen, I didn’t have a clue how MANY monsters I had, only that they were rather frightening and I couldn’t carry on pretending that they didn’t exist.

I knew a few things about the monsters. I heard the  sounds they made. I could made informed guesses about how they moved, what they ate, how big they were. I worked out what quelled them, what angered them, what encouraged them to stay. What I really needed, however, was a monster expert - someone who could identify them and tell me how to send them on their way.

Monsters 1

Only, none of the monster experts seemed interested. They told me that everyone has stuff under their bed - that I shouldn’t receive special treatment just because the stuff under my bed happened to be monsters. Many of them assumed I was imaging the monsters, or at least exaggerating how many there were. Some even suggested that I was making them up altogether.

Nobody was willing to look under my bed. Nobody was willing to perform the relevant tests.

Monsters 2

 I was accused of monster obsession. I was judged for seeking out monster experts. I was suspected of actually befriending monsters - it being implied that I enjoyed their company and their destruction.The more I was humoured, the more frustrated I became. Because nobody else had seen the monsters my anger was seen as irrational.  My reaction was seen as the problem, and the monsters as secondary.

Even when I was taken seriously, experts were often wrong.

 Often they only saw what they wanted to see, and so prescribed treatment that was doomed from the start.

Monster Interrogation 1

Any objections or corrections from me were viewed as arguments, or as further evidence against the facts.

Monster Interrogation 2

And, quite often, common sense was ignored entirely.

Monster Interrogation 3

After a while, I become despondent. I felt too strange to even be considered abnormal. An invalid invalid. I began to believe the experts.  I stopped mentioning the monsters. In fact, I questioned whether there were monsters at all. But all too soon, they would remind me of their presence. They would attack, leaving me scared and in pain. I would frequently be unable to function. Sometimes, the monsters would leave me seriously unwell or in danger.

Thankfully - after around ten years of living with monsters under my bed - I met some good experts. I started to get answers. Not answers to everything. Not every monster has been identified; some have still been labelled incorrectly, and all of the monsters have been there so long, it’s going to take a while to move them out. But I’m making progress, I’m gaining confidence and, for the first time, it feels like I know what I’m contending with.

Monsters 3

If I had a message for monster experts… for medical professionals, it would be to listen. Don’t trivialise. Don’t lie. Don’t assume. Understand the value, the relief and the validation that a diagnosis can bring. And, most importantly, if somebody tells you they have monsters under their bed, believe them.

Yours roaringly,

BT

An Adventure in Diagnosing Monsters

New blog, about living with undiagnosed chronic illness. - ‘An Adventure in Diagnosing Monsters -‘

Like the majority of people, I spend a lot of my time either doing Things or avoiding doing Things.

Things

Of the Things I avoid doing, sorting out my health and its consequences is one of the more arduous tasks. I have to manage commitments based on unknown levels of stamina, apologise a lot for illness I have little control over, apply for money to survive on while not being well enough to complete…

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An Adventure in Mind Gnomes

I am honoured to be have recently been selected as a ‘Voice of Mind’ for the mental health charity Mind. Being a ~Voice of Mind~ is not as existential as it sounds. Myself and the nine other volunteers are involved in trying to get mental health on the agenda for all UK political parties, ahead of the 2015 General Elections.

I care about this, because I have mental health. You do, too, actually. We all do. Your mental health is located roughly in the space between your sight globules, hearing holes, and that ill advised ponytail. If you’re struggling to find it, check it isn’t obscured by gnomes wearing sparkly top hats. That can happen sometimes.

image

I care even more about the campaign, because I have mental health problems. You might not personally experience these, but you will almost certainly be affected by them. If you are fond of more than three people, there is a high chance that, this year, somebody special to you will experience a significant mental health problem.

Causes of mental health problems are as varied as causes of physical illness and affliction. (The same can be said for severity, longevity, symptoms, prevalence and just about everything else.) Some doctors believe biological changes make people unwell, cognitive behavioural therapists say it’s maladaptive thinking, Freud said it was an imbalance of the superego and id… I personally put it down to my Platypus of Reason.

image

Actually, the Platypus of Reason is the good guy (or non-gender-specific-duck-billed-entity) here. They are full of wisdom, survival tips, common sense… and pizza. Because even a hypothetical Platypus has gotta eat.

image

People may sometimes ignore their Platypus of Reason on a night out, or be unable to understand its advice during stressful periods. Some people, however, like me, struggle a little more. I stopped listening to my Platypus of Reason at around the age of thirteen, and have strained to hear it properly ever since.

In the past ten years, I have used many mental health services on the NHS*. These have saved my life, there is no doubt there. There is also no doubt that their absence, scarcity and underfunding have put my life in jeopardy. It is reasonable to suggest that - had I had access to treatment and crisis care during my teenage years - my mental health problems would be nowhere near as debilitating as they are now.

I say that, not as self indulgence or an invitation for pity, but as context for my strong beliefs on this subject. I know too, that I am far from alone in my experiences and convictions.

Mind has six points on their manifesto:

image

If wellbeing and resilience were part of a national curriculum, I may have learned to recognise when things were getting bad. If access to psychological therapy was better, I may have received appropriate long term support before my problems became chronic. If crisis care was always available, I may have avoided placing my physical and mental health in serious danger.

If stigma and discrimination weren’t commonplace, I may not be liviving with the internalised guilt I do now. If work and the benefits system were accessible to people with mental health problems, I may have had the energy to focus on recovery and employment. If the NHS mental health budget had been funded sufficiently from the start, I might not be unwell now.

So those are my personal reasons for being involved in this campaign - those are the personal reasons for me asking you to email your local MP. Or, if you prefer, the reasons there is a badly drawn Platypus on your screen right now, asking you the same favour.

image

…sorry? …pizza?

image

Thank you Platypus, and thank you readers. You may now click the link:

http://www.mind.org.uk/about-us/policies-issues/in-parliament/general-election-2015/

Yours in the company of gnomes,

BT

*For those interested, I recently calculated that I have seen four counsellors, three therapists, six psychiatrists, a community psychiatric nurse, a home treatment team, and countless mental health nurses and GPs. I have visited A&E on four occasions, spent a total of five months on two psychiatric wards and taken four different antidepressant medications for five years.

Before you ask, yes I have a loyalty card.

An Adventure in Mind Gnomes

New Blog. Why I’m involved in the #MindManifesto as a Voice of Mind - “An Adventure in Mind Gnomes”

image

I am honoured to be have recently been selected as a ‘Voice of Mind’ for the mental health charity Mind. Being a ~Voice of Mind~ is not as existential as it sounds. Myself and the nine other volunteers are involved in trying to get mental health on the agenda for all UK political parties, ahead of the 2015 General Elections.

I care about this, because I have mental health.…

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gaywrites:

Today is the International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia! Learn more about how you can get involved, including sharing these awesome graphics about why today is so important.