Words Are My Sanctuary
Poetry. Thoughts. Humor. Feminism. Nature. Life.
Words Are My Sanctuary
some people have asked.
"If someone can be kicked out of school for copying a paper, a person should be kicked out of school for raping another human being."
Wagatwe Wanjuki, UVM Dismantling Rape Culture Conference 2014 (via byebyethinspo)
"You are allowed to be alive. You are allowed to be somebody different. You are allowed to not say goodbye to anybody or explain a single thing to anyone, ever."
Augusten Burroughs (via carmenrios)

The Rumblr’s in-house astrologer, Madame Clairevoyant, presents her latest dispatch from the stars:

Aries: This week it might help to move a little slowly, to test the ground you walk on, to choose your words with gentleness and with care. This week it might feel like you don’t know what to do or where to go or how to move, but you can practice, you can try hard, you can learn how to live the way you want. Wear the clothes or eat the food or listen to the songs that make you feel safe enough to be generous, strong enough to be kind.

Taurus: This week, the fog will lift, the clouds will part, everything untrue will fall away. Your vision will be clear and your dreams will shine and the truths you need will be revealed to you. The precious hidden parts of yourself will start to glow so bright that they can light your way forward. This week will show you the things you need most, and it will show you some things you’ve been hiding from, and it will show you some things more magical than you can even believe. 

Gemini: This week you’re going to feel a little vulnerable, maybe; you’re going to feel a little soft, like your heart is so tender, like it’s exposed to the whole world. Do what you can, to spend your time in spaces where this is okay, in places where you’ll be cared for and places where you’ll be defended. Try to spend your days in places where you can wear your feelings written all over your face, where you can move through the world with an open heart, where you can speak your truths. 

Cancer: This week, your days might feel too short, your shoes might feel too tight, your house might feel too small. Everything’s going to be okay, but things might feel weird. Everything’s going to be okay, so focus on the moments of small sweetness, each kind word, each sunrise, each song, each meal. Focus on living in small good ways. This week might not be fire and magic, but it can be good; it can keep you warm. Stay up late and think about flowers that bloom at night, all bright and brave. 

Leo: This week might be so dreamy; this week might be so strange. You can let yourself get carried away by emotions you can’t name, by desires you can’t see, by memories as wispy as ghosts. Let these things move you. Let these weird rhythms move your whole body, let them guide you, let them live in your bones. Follow paths that you can’t quite see. Climb the tallest hill you can find and watch the world below you. Climb the tallest tree you can find and watch the stars above. 

Virgo: You’re going to feel so full of fire this week, so full of strange bendy energy, so full of emotion that’s very familiar and very new and heavy in your blood. Try not to let this energy stay all cramped and dark inside you. Don’t let it poison your days. Don’t let it make you afraid. Drive through your city or drive through the woods and feel yourself in motion; feel the world move around you. Let this wild fire flow out of you, let it flow through you, let it make you unstoppable. 

Libra: This week can be so simple, if you let it be. This week can be so sweet, if you spend your days breathing in and out, if you spend your days dreaming, if you give your body what it needs, if you let your mind travel and wander and whirl. Try not to worry about anything but being alive this week, in your own strange body, in your own strange life. Feel the sun all warm and sweet on your face. Listen to music that makes your heart full.  

Scorpio: This is going to be a week of movement and changes, a week of shifting light and unsteady ground, a week of forking paths and strange bright visions. You’ll have to feel your way through unknown territory, through new cities, through the dark. This week, even if you can’t trust the things you can see, try to trust your body; try to trust your feet to carry you home again. Believe that your dreams hold truths that you can’t see during the day. Believe in the people who love you. 

Sagittarius: Colors will feel so bright around you, this week, and sounds will feel so rich, and your world will be so bright, and your heart will be so full. This week can be about intensity, it can be about brilliance, it can be about love, all soft and fierce and strange. If you want, this week, chase this love all the way to the ends of the earth, follow it to the weirdest corners of your heart, but don’t let it consume you. Let it make you generous. Let it make you brave. 

Capricorn: This week, the world might give you puzzles that are not easy to solve, and it might ask you questions with strange tangled answers. And it might get lonely, trying to figure it all out, trying to live well, trying to be kind and solid and true in this messy world. Think about the trees on your block; think about how much life there is on this earth, think about all the salt and the life in the oceans. Think about someone who you love the most, and don’t stop trying to live bravely. 

Aquarius: This week, your world might feel like it doesn’t make sense; your world might feel like a maze, like a puzzle, like a wild mess. It’s okay, it’s less tangled than it feels. You can put everything in order this week, you can organize your house, you can tell stories with beginnings and ends, you can map your whole life with stories. Keep your eyes open, this week. Look at your own face in the mirror and wear the colors that make you feel most like yourself. 

Pisces: This week is going to be about other people. This week, you are going to need to look to other people for your best moments of joy, for your brightest surprises, for the magic you most need. This week is for leaning on your friends when you have to, and it’s for letting them lean on you, for letting relationships with other people sustain you and keep you safe and alive. Talk to your parents on the phone, or talk to your neighbors, or write quiet poems for faraway strangers. 

Today’s image was made specially for Madame Clairevoyant by Jen May.
"Not I, nor anyone else can travel that road for you.
You must travel it by yourself.
It is not far. It is within reach.
Perhaps you have been on it since you were born, and did not know.
Perhaps it is everywhere - on water and land."
Walt Whitman, Leaves of Grass (via introspectivepoet)
"The labor of being human is bearing one another’s ghosts. Energy cannot be created or destroyed, so we gather our losses into elevators and shoot up to the top floor, where we survey the city and they say whatever we want them to."
Another SELF-MADE MAN #29: Ghosts by Thomas Page McBee. (via therumpus)
"Have you ever heard the phrase cockblocking? You know, you’re at a bar, talking to a girl, and what happens? Her less attractive friend comes over and ruins everything. Cockblock. Well I have to tell you something guys: I have been the less attractive friend, and you were NOT cockblocked. I was following orders from my better-looking friend that she did not wanna fuck you. …Girls have two signals for their friends: ‘I’m gonna fuck him’ and ‘HELP.’"

Amy Schumer [x] (via rashaka)

The number of “get me out of here” tactics women have developed and shared to help each other escape from overly-insistent-to-borderline-predatory dudes in public places should probably be enough evidence of the existence of rape culture all on its own.

(via madgastronomer)


(via ellakrystina)

I especially like how, in the majority of cases, you don’t have to verbally communicate what your signals are to other women. I’ve had women I didn’t even know come save me. Literally every woman recognizes the “Dear god, help me” facial expression, and knows exactly what they should do. We don’t get a handbook for this. We don’t have a sit-down nail polish party where we talk about a standardized woman code for preventing creepers. It’s just part of being a woman.


(via eastberlin)

Yup. I’ve definitely taken strangers by the arm and pulled her aside to go, “Oh my GOD it’s you! How ARE YOU?!? It’s been so long!” and then been like “hey I could overhear that guy who wouldn’t leave you alone so I figured I’d give you an out” and then see their VISIBLY RELIEVED expressions. This is part of girl code, because rape culture is that pervasive.

(via thebicker)

I once had a girl sit on my lap and say “hey baby” after she witnessed a guy (who was easily 20+ years older than me) hitting on me and harassing me for my number even after I told him I was taken. After he got up and left she asked if I was okay. I couldn’t thank her enough times, I even bought her a drink.

(via castielsmiles)

We have done this. In fact, we are this. Because we are asexual and we don’t like alcohol so we never drink, we have gone with friends to parties/places where our sole job was to keep an eye out for everyone and be the permanent ‘aggressive man-sheild.’ Not one of our female friends has ever questioned this or found it all strange. In fact, often once they realized we were willing to do it, it would be pre-arranged. Every guy friend we ever did this in front of or tried to explain to looked flabbergasted. They had no idea that this was a) an intentional thing, b) a planned ahead thing, or c) universal.

Rape culture is the fact that every woman understands this. Male privilege is the fact that no guy on earth seems to know or understand.

(via cractasticdispatches)

I’ve been asked to pretend to be my friend’s girlfriend every time we go out at night, just because she wears clothes that show off her curves and guys won’t leave her alone. They only back off when I put my arm around her and act as if we’re together romantically, and sometimes not even then.

(via zaataronpita)

i once ran interference for a friend, only to receive the unwanted advances myself. he wouldn’t back off until my (male) friend literally wrapped me up in his arms and acted as if he was my S.O.

(via miljathefailcat)

It happens online too. A guy I know started Facebook-stalking me after a recent interaction, and my roommate immediately got on Facebook and told him she was my girlfriend. He thankfully backed off after that.

I can’t count the number of times I have pretended to be somebody’s girlfriend or sister in a bar when a guy wouldn’t leave her alone. Both with friends and strangers.

(via feministsupernatural)

After reading these, I feel like taking a shower. Because I’m the designated driver pretty much every time, not being a big fan of alcohol, but I rarely, if ever, intervene. And yeah, I’m small and pretty physically weak, but I could put my foot down verbally if it came down to it. I’m just too scared.

(via harperhug)

You’re probably scared of confronting the guys.  And you should be.  That’s what this whole post is about.  Rape culture is so prevalent and socially accepted as the rule of the land that if someone confronts a guy and tells him directly to back off, someone is getting hurt.  That’s why all of the testimonies here are examples of how to deflect.  How women all learn methods of pulling a woman away from a situation with a guy who isn’t allowing her to say no, by making up some lie that will get the guy to let her go without sending him into a rage and deciding to teach you both a lesson about knowing your place and submitting to rape culture.  Men are dangerous in these situations because all of society backs them up as just a nice guy who deserves a chance, and vilifies any woman who refuses to give him a chance.  Women are not allowed to say no.  So other women have to rescue the women saying no and pull them away with some made up excuse.  Otherwise the situation will escalate and the ones who get hurt are always the women. 

(via coffeegleek)

Women absolutely have to learn rescue tactics for each other, but it’s kind of funny how we describe really obvious facial expressions and body language as “secret signals.” The reality is that women telegraph disinterest in these aggressive men, making it super obvious, but men choose to ignore it. Total strangers who are just sitting nearby or happen to glance their way will be able to see that the woman isn’t interested, but the guy making the advances is somehow oblivious? Unlikely.

(via smitethepatriarchy)

And perceived physical power of the woman doesn’t matter either, I have had to do this for other rollergirls. Even after bouts where they are bruised, sweaty, and partying with a bunch of other built women in the same jersey.

(via polerin)

One time, some friends and I were having dinner at a reasonably fancy restaurant when I suddenly noticed the other girl in the group, who’d gone to the bathroom, had been away for ages. I decided to go see if she was all right. The bathroom was at the back, outside and out of view, and when I went out there, lo, there were two hella drunk guys who’d cornered her for a clearly unwelcome chat, putting themselves between her and the door back into the main restaurant, both ignoring her defensive, unrelaxed body language which SCREAMED “I do not want to be here”. So I walked up, loudly announced that the others had wanted to tell her something, and brought her back inside, whereon she heaved a huge sigh of relief and thanked me for rescuing her. She’d tried to extricate herself politely several times, but either the guys hadn’t noticed or were wilfully ignoring her, so she’d been stuck there humouring them for twenty minutes. For the first time, the idea of girls going to the bathroom in packs made sense to me: so that individuals don’t get cornered and propositioned by douchebags on the way to and from their group. 

(via fozmeadows)

Super important. I can’t tell you the number of men in bars have labeled me a “bitch” because they wouldn’t back off my friends despite multiple rejections, and I wouldn’t take it and would yell at them to back off already. I stood up for myself and my female friends and therefore was a bitch. When then bitch I’ll be.

(via babyletmeglow)




Do You Love Someone With Depression?
If you have a partner or are close to someone who struggles with depression, you may not always know how to show them you love them. One day they may seem fine, and the next they are sad, distant and may push you away. It is important that you know that as a person who is close to them and trusted by them, you can help your friend or partner have shorter, less severe bouts of depression. Mental illness is as real as physical illness (it is physical actually, read more about that here) and your partner needs you as much as they would need to be cared for if they had the flu.
Your relationship may seem one-sided during these times, but by helping your partner through a very difficult and painful affliction, you are strengthening your relationship and their mental health in the long term.
1. Help them keep clutter at bay.
When a person begins spiraling into depression, they may feel like they are slowing down while the world around them speeds up. The mail may end up in stacks, dishes can pile up in the sink, laundry may go undone as the depressed person begins to feel more and more overwhelmed by their daily routine and unable to keep up. By giving your partner some extra help sorting mail, washing dishes or using paper plates and keeping chaos in check in general, you’ll be giving them (and yourself) the gift of a calm  environment. (I’m a fan of the minimalist movement because of this, you can read more about that here.)
2. Fix them a healthy meal.
Your partner may do one of two things when they are in a depressed state. They may eat very little, or they may overeat. In either case, they may find that driving through a fast food restaurant or ordering a pizza online is just easier than fixing a meal. Eating like this, or neglecting to eat will only degrade your partner’s health, causing them to go deeper into their depression. Help your loved one keep their body healthy, and their mind will follow. This is a great article that talks about the “Brain Diet” which can help the symptoms of depression, and this article talks about how our modern diet could contribute to the recent rise in depression. Here is a recipe for a trail mix that is quick to make and has mood-boosting properties.
3.Get them outside.
 The benefits of getting outside for a depressed person are huge. And it is possibly the last thing on earth your partner will want to do. Take them to be somewhere in nature. Pack a picnic and lie in the sun, take a leisurely hike or plant a garden. Being barefoot in the dirt, or “earthing” helps ground the body and reverse the effects of living in a world of emf’s, and digging in soil can actually act as an antidepressant, as a strain of bacterium in soil, Mycobacterium vaccae, triggers the release of seratonin, which in turn elevates mood and decreases anxiety. Sunshine increases Vitamin D production which can help alleviate depression. My friend Elizabeth wrote an excellent post about Vitamin D and its link to depression here.  For more information about other sources of Vitamin D, this is a great post as well as this.
4. Ask them to help you understand what they’re feeling.
If your partner is able to articulate what they are going through, it will help them and you better understand what you are dealing with, and may give insight into a plan of action for helping your partner. Also, feeling alone is common for a depressed person and anything that combats that feeling will help alleviate the severity and length of the depression.
5. Encourage them to focus on self-care.
Depressed people often stop taking care of themselves. Showering, getting haircuts, going to the doctor or dentist, it’s all just too hard, and they don’t deserve to be well taken care of anyway in their minds. This can snowball quickly into greater feelings of worthlessness since “Now I’m such a mess, no one could ever love me”. Help your loved one by being proactive. Tell them “I’m going to do the dishes, why don’t you go enjoy a bubble bath?” can give them the permission they won’t give themselves to do something normal, healthy and self-loving.
6. Hug them.
Studies show that a sincere hug that lasts longer than 20 seconds can release feel-good chemicals in the brain and elevate the mood of the giver and receiver. Depressed people often don’t want to be touched, but a sincere hug with no expectation of anything further can give your partner a lift.
7. Laugh with them.
Telling a silly joke, watching a comedy or seeing a stand up comedian will encourage your partner to laugh in spite of themselves. Laughing releases endorphins and studies show can actually counteract symptoms of depression and anxiety.
8. Reassure them that you can handle their feelings.
Your partner may be feeling worthless, angry and even guilty while they are depressed. They may be afraid that they will end up alone because no one will put up with their episodes forever. Reassure them that you are in the relationship for the long haul and they won’t scare you away because they have an illness.
9. Challenge their destructive thoughts.
A depressed person’s mind can be a never-ending loop of painful, destructive thoughts. “I’m unlovable, I’m a failure, I’m ugly, I’m stupid”. Challenge these untruths with the truth. “You’re not unlovable, I love you. You aren’t a failure, here are all the things you’ve accomplished.”
10.Remind them why you love them.
Look at pictures of happy times you’ve had together. Tell them your favorite things about them. Reminisce about your relationship and all the positive things that have happened, and remind your partner that you love them and they will get through this.
(via The Darling Bakers)

More people need to know this.

This is so incredibly important. I’ve seen people with depression ostracized so many times, and I cannot stress how much it means to each and every person I’ve tried to reach out to after whatever “falling-outs” they’ve had due to depression. Remember to always be compassionate and kind to all friends like this, because you never know what they’re going through.
"the phone rings and i pick it up and i really wanted to do something else with my hands. it keeps coming back to that: what do i do with these hands? let’s say the dead are watching us. what should we do with our hands? let’s say that aliens are watching us. what should we do with our hands? let’s say that the world isn’t made out of love, let’s say it’s all paratroopers and suckerpunches. does this really change anything?"
richard siken, black telephone (via thefogsaid)

Katie Vernon

Katie Vernon

Katie Vernon

Katie Vernon

Katie Vernon

Katie Vernon

Katie Vernon

Katie Vernon

Katie Vernon

Katie Vernon
Pseudo-monosonnet for Health Trolls, Interrupted (4/30)