let’s talk about red flags


So there are a ton of posts out there – especially from some of our favorite BDSM bloggers – that talk about and list red flags. What they are, what to look for, how to spot them, etc. Lists upon lists. I reblog them often! Knowing what red flags to look for can be helpful and can save someone from lots of pain, damage and heartbreak. There are lots of those red flag posts out there.

This is not one of those posts.

This is not about what red flags to look for. This is not a list of things to avoid. This is not a list of warning signs. This is not about how to spot the red flags. This is a post about what to do if you missed the red flags.

Those who pay attention to my more personal posts may be aware that in the last few months I’ve been working with my therapist to deal with the trauma of being raped last October. (And most of you are probably aware it’s been long, hard, and not really felt like it’s going that well.) Anyway, the long and the short of that point is that the man who raped me was someone I’d been dating for a few months and was someone I thought I could trust, someone I thought I was safe with, someone I thought was a good person.

Or, in other words, I missed all of the red flags.

Me. A person who regularly reads, discusses, and reblogs posts about warning signs and things to look for and red flags to avoid. A person who can rattle the red flags off without even thinking about them. A person who can spot these red flags in someone else’s relationships with no problem. I missed them. I missed the red fucking flags. And I paid for it. And I’m still paying for it.

So what the fuck do you do with that?

Well, I’ll tell you. Don’t blame yourself. Seriously – do. not. blame. yourself. Do not beat yourself up. Don’t sit there and think about how stupid you are. Don’t talk about how this is your fault. Do not do that.

Here’s the thing about red flags. When you’re not the one immediately and emotionally involved in the situation – they seem like the most obvious things in the world. They seem so easy to spot. They seem cut and dry and like giant glaring neon warning signs. You literally sit there and read this shit and think to yourself that stuff like that is so obvious and you’re prepared for anything and there’s no way you could ever possibly miss that. (Despite, in my case, ending up in toxic, abusive relationships more than once.) But when you are the one involved in the relationship? It’s so much messier. It’s so much harder to spot. It’s so much easier to get sucked in and caught up and not know how to get yourself out once the red flags start to seem more obvious.

That’s the thing about abusive people. That’s the thing about abusive partners. That’s the thing about dating and being involved with an abusive person. They are really fucking good at this shit. They are manipulative as can be. They are masters of the mindfuck. They have spent years and years practicing this and mastering this and becoming really fucking good at this. They know how to draw you in. They know how to make you care. They know how to trap you and get you in so deep that you feel like you can’t leave. They know how to make you believe their lies and their bullshit and their complete and utter abusive crap. They know. They know.

So my point? It’s not your fault.

If you’re sitting there going back over and over and over your relationship and parsing it and slicing it and studying it and tearing it apart and wondering what you missed and how you didn’t see it and how you could have done this differently… If you’re sitting there blaming yourself? Don’t. Don’t. It is not your fault. It is not your fault. It is so easy to see things in hindsight and to go back over the relationship when you’re not in the moment and caught up in all of it and having to interact with the person abusing you and see all of the things that you missed, and all of the things that were wrong, and all of the things that you should have noticed. 

I know how that is. I know how that is. But trust me. It’s not your fault. It. Was. Not. Your. Fault. 

So you missed the red flags? I know how that is. I know how that feels. I know the shock waves it sends through your life. And you know what you can do about it? Don’t blame yourself. Seriously, stop it. Stop it! Stop blaming yourself. And then when you’re ready? Talk through it with someone you trust and someone who has your best interests at heart. Look at the things you missed. Set up check-ins for the future so that you can have someone else help you look at situations when you’re in them and help call out red flags. 

It sucks to miss the red flags. It will haunt you. I know.
It will make you feel like you did something wrong. You didn’t
You’ll feel like an idiot. You’re not.
You’ll feel like you deserved it. You didn’t.
You’ll think it’s your fault. It is not your fault.

Really, it’s not. It’s not easy to spot these things when you’re living the red flags every single day. You didn’t do anything wrong. So stop blaming yourself.





Kindness is often mistaken for softness and let me tell you, friends….that is a mistake you don’t want to make. 

Kind people are not born that way, they do not stumble into it, kind people are forged in fire and darkness and imploding stars…they have steel cores. Throw a punch and you’re going to break your hand. 

Kind people are kind because they know firsthand that life isn’t.

I was just talking to someone about this. Kindness isn’t a natural-born trait, it’s a daily choice, so when you call someone kind you’re not praising their personality, you’re praising their effort. 

Thank you








Can confirm. My favorite book on linguistics has an entire section on AAVE that talks about this.

So some people are better at bad English than others? Also, in what kind of classes is this knowledge useful?

It’s useful for the kind of classes where people aren’t busy being assholes about how other people speak, @im-just-a-penguin.

But don’t take my word for it!

Here’s a website dedicated to explaining dialects that goes over the rules.

Here’s a professional linguist who specializes in AAVE, and just one of his many papers explaining that AAVE is a proper dialect.

Hot shit! Here’s an article from STANFORD UNIVERSITY that’s literally titled “AAVE is not Standard English with mistakes”!!!

Here’s a blurb from PBS, introducing the topic of whether AAVE is a creole or a dialect. You’ll notice neither one of those options means ‘just poor English’.

Here’s English Language and Linguistics Online, which is a nice technical linguistics website, further deconstructing how AAVE works.

Here’s a paper on the habitual “be” from New York University.

Here’s a link to some information from Portland University. I wish to draw your attention specifically to the phrase: “linguists now agree that AAVE is not ‘broken’ English, or slang”.

Here’s a super-technical paper on phonology in AAVE, which gets down into things like why AAVE speakers may say “axed” instead of “asked.”

Hm. Looks like there are a lot of people who study this stuff for a living who disagree with your assessment that it’s “bad English.” I guess you better get reading … . asshole.

What’s so useful about the study of different ways people refuse to speak proper English? You did not answer that question.

Hm! Well, first, let’s define “proper English.”

Do you mean Queen’s English? American English? Canadian English? What about Indian English, or Kenyan English? Maybe Zimbabwean English? Maybe you meant Jamaican English, or Sierra Leonean English. Are those “proper English”?

Well, let’s assume you mean American English, since this kind of asshole question usually only comes from Americans, in my experience. Do you mean Southern American English, with “y’all” and “all y’all” and people who are “fixing to” do things? What about New Englander American English, where the thing I call a “side yard” is a dooryard? How about American English as spoken along the Arizona/Texas/Mexico border, which tends to have features not present in more northern states? Oh! Or what about New York City American English? Only place I’ve ever been where a grinder is a kind of food rather than a kind of food-maker and a train is underground.

Ah! Or perhaps you mean Texan American English, where “might-could” is a valid construction that means neither “might” nor “could.” Or Californian American English! Yes, that must be what you mean!

I didn’t answer the question, asshole, because it is not a valid question, and because you clearly asked it just to be (falsely) pedantic and superior. Rewording it as “refuse to speak proper English” instead of “better at bad English” doesn’t make it valid, it just shows that you know more than one way to be an asshole.

AAVE is an American English dialect. No different from any of the other dialects I just mentioned, except that it tends to be based along race lines rather than geographic ones. It is a correct American English dialect, it is a recognized American English dialect, and you don’t have to like it but you don’t get to shit on it just because you want to be racist … asshole.

450 Romani evicted from legal settlement in Rome


Oh, look, what a surprise.
Italy is clearing out 450 Roma out of an official (meaning legal) camp, a few weeks after Silvani announced the census intended to count all Roma and deport any Roma immigrants.

These people were legally allowed to live there in dwellings provided by the municipality, but now they are being evicted and many families are being separated.

It is hard to know what we can do about this, especially if we don’t live in the countries where antiRomani sentiment is the worst.

If anyone can provide info on any reputable Italian organizations that are fighting this, please let me know.

(Article: 29 June 2018)

450 Romani evicted from legal settlement in Rome


I have an interesting ask for any followers or people who feel like sharing. 

Any Native American YA LGBTQ+ authors out there who are looking to work on a mobile serial project that will be staring a Native woman and a Jewish woman? It will mostly be told from the perspective of the Native woman. 

I cannot give more information of the project on a public platform, but if you are interested, or know of any writers looking for gigs who are please do not hesitate to reach out. We are committed to telling diverse stories written by diverse voices and we’d like our main Native character to be reflective of the author who will be giving her her voice. You’ll be building this character with us!

DM me and I can set you up with more details on who I am, our company, and what this project entails. 

Please feel free to share. 

YES this is a paying gig! 


A bird in the hand is worth two in the, uh, basement window ditch… thing.

The neighbors didn’t see me catch it, but they saw me walking across the yard with an extremely angry robin in my fist and had Many Questions. He’s fine, just very young and stupid. I’m not sure if he’d be able to get out of the window ditch on his own yet, but I wanted to make sure he got out before a cat could get to him. He is now sitting petulantly under the tree while his parents shout at me.