Tag Archives: relationships

APW 2013: Intellectualism, Anarchy, Privilege and Power

(This is the fifth in a way-too-long-running series on APW 2013.)

I am not educated on anarchy or intentional communities. I consider this a lack in my education. (Seems like reddit may have a good starting place for me.)

Dennis Fox is a psychologist from Boston who focuses on a few interesting topics: intentional communities and critical psychology.

What is critical psychology, you ask? When speaking of truths, Fox said, “current psychology’s truth is in finding ways for unhappy people to adapt to the current world, rather than in changing the current world.”

That really resonated with me.

So many of the unhappinesses we struggle with derive from trying to live in ways our society deems correct: working a 40+ hour per week job in which we produce something of “value” to society and for which we receive money and (if you’re “lucky”) fame. Then we should partake in monogamous relationships that last for years, build wealth, and strive to have bodies like those of people in magazines.

When we fail at those things, we go to psychologists, who have techniques they teach us for how to set goals, how to love ourselves within this framework, and how to persevere in doing what’s good for us.

I do hope that doesn’t sound like a rant. I don’t mean it do.

I attended a couple panels that dealt with power dynamics and/or community building, which I touched on in the previous post (regarding the sociopathy concerns). Dr. Eli Sheff focused on things like gender, racial, and sexual privilege in relationships, while Dr. Fox spoke more on changing our (individual/community) world to find our own truths.

I, of course, consider these rather related.

Being a bisexual or bi-romantic female in the poly community is a powerful thing–like having O negative blood in a friggin’ donation facility. Hell, “hot bi-babe” is a term through around a lot in podcasts and in the community.

Being the third or newcomer in a triad? A distinctly un-powerful thing.

Being legally civil unioned? Powerful, because you can “pass” and be a gentle, suburban face for polyamory. On top of that, our culture at-large values relationships with a potential for raising healthy children, and nothing screams “family stability” like being legally married. Or so they tell me.

Financial privilege and social mobility is huge when you have a lifestyle that could cost you your job. I’m very privileged in working in a field where 1) I make a fair amount of money, 2) my work environments tend to be liberal, and 3) I have the ability to get a new job pretty quickly if I lose my current one.

But I don’t want the communities I’m part of to size me (or anyone) up by those metrics.

So how do we either 1) live (safely?) outside of that to have our own truths, and/or 2) change the world around us to be more accepting of those truths?

I don’t know.

APW 2013: Codependency and Identity

(This is third in a series of posts about Atlanta Poly Weekend 2013.)

I was utterly delighted at how many panels and discussions touched on questions of identity and codependence. I mean “identity” here as a self-discovery and self-listening process, rather than the external application of labels.

I’m early yet in my own exploration of codependence and the unhealthy behaviors I’ve harbored for many years. One of the things I’m focusing on is (re)discovering my own life patterns and identity. It’s a large component in why I moved into my own apartment.

When I saw a 5-7 adult family (with kids!) at APW, my first thought was, “Holy fuck, how do they stay themselves?”

Continue reading APW 2013: Codependency and Identity

Choosing the Unconventional Path

Last year, Greg and I expanded the boundaries of our relationship pretty drastically. It went really badly, but has resulted in an immense amount of growth for me: I’ve never been so independent within this relationship, so free to say “no” and feel my feelings without justifying or suppressing them.

And here you all probably thought I was kick-ass assertive 24/7.

Continue reading Choosing the Unconventional Path

Winkage!

Winks, links, they’re all the same.

  • xkcd: Epsilon and Zeta – I don't link to XKCD much, in part because I don't read it much, and in part because everyone else in the world does. That said, this one uses real-deal National Hurricane Center advisories in it, and is really good.
  • Ann Aguirre’s Blog – Authors Against Bullying: Blog Hop – "Things were bad. People made fun of me daily. They picked on my appearance, my weight, my geeky interests. Sometimes I hid in the bathroom rather than face a cafeteria full of people who didn’t like me."
  • Utah Game Developer Jailed for Not Paying Wages – ABC News – "Hunter lasted two years before calling it quits, hanging onto promises of paychecks that appeared only erratically, with Rushton sometimes handing out checks selectively and demanding confidentiality while blaming companies that licensed games for being slow to pay for their development or royalties."
  • Beyond Minecraft: Notch On Fame, Pressure, Sequels | Rock, Paper, Shotgun – A bizarre thing for there to have been contention over: "Sometimes the fans are right, too. Like ladders. I did not want ladders in Minecraft at all. Ladders are never fun. They’re not fun in Minecraft either. But they’re a very good utility. It’s an easy way to get straight up without having stairs going back and forth."
  • On Labeling Women “Crazy” | Paging Dr. NerdLove – "I started realizing that when my friends and I would talk about our crazy exes or what-have-you, more often than not, we weren’t talking about ex girlfriends or random dates who exhibited signs of  genuine mental health issues. […] For the most part, crazy meant 'acting in a way I didn’t like.'"

Weekly linkage

This week’s internet cruising:

  • How to keep someone with you forever – "You create a sick system." I wanted to cry when I read this.
  • Looking Back — Discord&Rhyme – "To be successful at bootstrapping, you have to cut every feature except those you think are absolutely necessary. Then you cut some that you thought that you absolutely had to have. You compromise your design because you need to get the product to market. You ignore automated testing and documentation because your code is too unstable to be held back by rigorous processes."
  • Launching beta, or “How to decide when and where to cut corners”
  • 200+ Seamless Patterns Perfect for Website Backgrounds – Pretty! They're a bit busy, but I think they could be used tastefully.
  • Statement by Apple on App Store Review Guidelines – Courtesy of Greg. Apple seems to be getting off their high horse with regards to development tools. I'm not sure yet if this means I'll be springing for Plants vs. Zombies on the iPhone.
  • These Dance Moves Are Irresistible – ScienceNOW – Courtesy of Michael. "The most important factor to the women was how much the man moved his head, neck, and torso, the researchers will report online tomorrow in Biology Letters." This is a really cool-sounding study. Thinking about the types of dancing I like to watch and see done well–hip-hop, even bellydance–I like fancy foot-work, but tight (pop and lock) torso and head movements do draw my eye more. Flailing arms are just hilarious.
  • Action Not Words: The Difference Between Talkers and Doers – Wonderfully (and miserably) timely for me. The last few weeks for me have been very slothful (as evidenced by the lack of posts here), with correspondence and projects piling up while I squander my time. I've taken to returning to my 3 Most Important Things per day. If I get nothing else done in a day, I will get whatever those three things are done. I know from experience that having the 3 MITs builds momentum so that I'll rarely only ever get those three things done.
  • We’re Not Paid To Write Code – This is a really well-written article on how we're paid to deliver a product, not sling code. This is a hard-won lesson for every comp sci major worth their weight I've ever met in their first 2 years out of college, myself included. I'm still not great at balancing quality vs. out-the-doorness on personal projects, but I've learned a lot more about what's acceptable business-wise.