first fig

my candle burns at both ends…

Month: September, 2011

assertiveness as a subversive act

cross posted at doves and serpents

the most subversive, revolutionary act in this world is to speak the truth. this is especially so for women. speaking one’s truth is an act of courage requiring a level of assertiveness that may or may not be in a woman’s possession. patriarchal cultures have traditionally frowned upon assertiveness in women, training their daughters instead to exist for those around them rather than for themselves. the consequences of trained passiveness don’t need explanation; suffice it to say that such a practice harms women in body, mind and soul.

i counseled victims of intimate partner violence for many years and saw firsthand the results of women trained to be passive and submissive. the damage done to women and children affected by this evil is unspeakable.  as part of my counseling, i offered my clients an assertiveness training course. here we would learn what assertiveness is and how it differs from passiveness and aggression—a concept that is a revelation for many women. i taught my clients how to use “I” language and how to communicate in an ethical way. and then we would practice . . . and practice . . . and practice . . . Read the rest of this entry »

are you ready for some football

cross posted at the exponent

it’s that time of the year again. there’s a chill in the air, the leaves are changing, i am suddenly craving apples and pumpkin and mr. mraynes spends a good deal of each Saturday watching, reading and discussing football.

i’m not a fan of the game; i have never understood the point and find it excruciatingly boring to watch. on top of that I have a big problem with the celebration of hyper-masculinity that is football. it is stylized warfare with each team trying to march into enemy territory. think of what football says about gender roles; men should be out front fighting while women cheer them on at the sidelines. and of course those women should be blonde, buxom and in as few clothes as possible. even the rhetoric reinforces male dominance with terms such as penetrate and score. Read the rest of this entry »