Unpopular Opinion, The Kids Online Safety Act is Going to Harm More Kids than it Protects
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Unpopular Opinion, The Kids Online Safety Act is Going to Harm More Kids than it Protects

I get it. The people who write these laws live in a world where kids all have a loving family who cares about them and want only to protect them from the evil that exists “out there.” They will provide whatever help and information their kids need, and there’s no need for them to navigate the wildness of the internet.  But we make information available to kids online because that’s not their reality. They don’t have supportive parents, they get kicked out for being gay, they are being abused at home, they are dealing with mental health issues their parents refuse to acknowledge, and they are often alone in trying to get help.

Those kids need an open internet.

We Still Have to Talk about Why Sexual Assault Victims, Including Kids, Don’t Come Forward

We Still Have to Talk about Why Sexual Assault Victims, Including Kids, Don’t Come Forward

Never mind the fact that they might have tried to tell someone and got shut down.

Never mind the fact that they might have told someone who didn’t believe them

Never mind the fact that telling someone is going to create a massive conflict within their own family.

Never mind the fact that it’s extremely unlikely that any sort of conviction will occur if they tell the police.

Never mind the fact that they will now, and maybe forever, be seen as damaged goods by a large segment of society.

Never mind that no matter how heinous the crime, they’ll have to answer question after question about what they did to provoke it.

Florida Sends the Wrong Message when Allowing for the Death Penalty in Child Abuse Cases

Florida Sends the Wrong Message when Allowing for the Death Penalty in Child Abuse Cases

I get it. Punishing child abusers is an easy public opinion win. No one wants to punish abusers less. As survivors, though, we must balance that with what is best for the child. Testifying in a child abuse trial is a traumatic experience as it is. We shouldn’t be asking kids to take responsibility for taking the life of their abuser on top of that or spend the rest of their lives knowing that someone died because they spoke up. Nor should we be arming abusers with another way to manipulate kids into staying silent.

We should focus on what is best for a survivor’s healing so they can have a life after abuse because that is possible.

Heal Without Judging How Others Heal

Heal Without Judging How Others Heal

The same can be said for inpatient treatment, therapy, exercise, gardening, micro-dosing, meditation, religion, etc. There are so many things that have worked for some people in healing. The list could get long, but no matter how many items we add, one thing will be true for every item. They all worked for some of the people some of the time and never for everyone all of the time.

Healing is hard. Those who are trying to heal from trauma deserve our respect and encouragement. They don’t need a ton of judgment about how they are healing. Stop making it harder with your judgment.

Friendships Matter Much More than the Value We Place on Them
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Friendships Matter Much More than the Value We Place on Them

It’s worth thinking about your friends and recognizing that we need all kinds of friends. We need loose connections, and we need tight connections. We need long-term friends, and we need friends for a season of our lives.

In short, we need each other. I’m afraid this is something that has gotten lost in our culture. It’s certainly gotten lost in our priorities, and I consider myself as guilty as anyone.

I also know that being guilty of not prioritizing friendships has hurt me. It’s likely hurting you. It is hurting all of society. It’s time we started valuing close friendships again.

How Shame Keeps Us Disconnected

How Shame Keeps Us Disconnected

The context for this quote is a handful of stories where someone felt ashamed of an event or something that they’d allowed people to believe about them that wasn’t true. Marisa goes on to talk about how when we have something we won’t discuss, it creates a separation from other people, and that separation can take away from humanness. Our interactions with other people are blocked off. We know we aren’t sharing our whole selves with the people we should be. That block can protect us from potential pain, but it also prevents us from having all the benefits of having close relationships with other humans.

Doesn’t that sound exactly like growing up keeping our abuse secret?

We grow up with shame around something that was never our fault. That shame prevents us from fully connecting with other human beings. That lack of connection harms our mental health as adults. We struggle to heal without one of the most powerful tools in our arsenal as human beings, other people. We keep our secrets and hide our shame, meaning we will never know the healing power of being accepted and loved by those who know our whole selves.