As Featured on News Cult: How to Talk to Republicans

Republicans are… the worst. They range on a sliding scale from really bigoted and greedy to slightly less bigoted and greedy. Some of them want to be selective republicans (i.e., “I’m socially liberal but fiscally conservative“), but if it walks like a duck and talks like a duck, it’s a fucking Republican; (news flash: thinking gay marriage is all good does not negate your insistence that rich people should pay the same amount of taxes as someone living below the poverty line. BLOW ME.). Needless to say, interacting with them without becoming homicidally suicidal is basically impossible. So allow me to help you—here’s how to talk to republicans.

Try to find some common ground

And cling to that. Do not veer onto other topics of conversation—stick with only what you can agree on. I.e.:

•”So, I bet you like ice cream. Everybody likes ice cream, right?”…… “Oh, you think it’s a gateway drug? Okay.”

•”Aren’t cardinals just beautiful birds?”…… “You don’t like them because they’re red, the color of grubby Communist leeches? Great!”

•”It’s so hot out today!”….. “Climate change isn’t real?… Awesome.”

Be drunk

Inebriation will just help so much with the whole being in their presence thing. It’ll be easier to let the awful things they say slide off your shoulders if you’re two sheets to the wind. But make sure to stay happy drunk—the last thing we need is to enter the belligerent drunk zone, where all will go to hell at the first mention of “pro life.”

Imagine you’re talking to a small child

Turn up the baby voice, use only simple words, and speak very slowly. E.g.:

•”Hi there! That is a pretty shirt you have on.” [Pinch their cheeks]

•”Well aren’t you just a little bitty cutie wootie! Yes you are. Yes you are!”

•”I bet you have a lot of cool toys! Let me guess—some baby dolls, toy guns, and a miniature Audi R8?”

Challenge them

If politics come up, you cannot stand idly by while they spout absurd nonsense. It is your duty to speak out and protest. So challenge them on their stances. Like, if they say they don’t think healthcare should be socialized, ask them if they think it’s a human right and should be accessible to all people, or only those who cheat on their taxes and hide their money in offshore trust funds so they’re wealthy enough to afford its exorbitant costs. If they’re a proponent of U.S. military violence and intervention abroad, ask them on precisely what grounds, demanding they explain starting from the inception of whatever conflict/war they’re attempting to justify (so at least a century ago). If they say they’re against abortion, ask them why they think it’s their right to dictate what other women can do with their bodies, when they’re perfectly entitled to control their own shitty body and decide whether or not to litter the earth with their own terrible offspring. And because undoubtedly their claims will be baseless, come ready with a printed and bound book of written sources that provide evidence to back up your assertions. And a mic to drop.


Sometimes it’s just too much, because you can’t stand what they’re saying and you can’t change their minds—so just don’t talk to them if you can avoid it. If you can’t avoid it (which like why couldn’t you unless you willingly surround yourself with repubs, which says a lot more about your character judgment and integrity than anything else—meaning it says that you’re the problem, because you can’t just ‘agree to disagree’ with the most important people in your life on the most important issues in your life/the world/everyone else’s lives DON’T BE SO SELFISH AND HYPOCRITICAL), then just always have an excuse ready to get out of the conversation. Whether it’s that you need to grab some water [and never come back], are deaf, just got a call that your neighbor’s cat is in the ER, or that there are lots of homeless people dying on the streets who need your help because contrary to some people’s beliefs, they’re not just lazy drug addicts mooching off the welfare system, just bow out. #SEEYA #wouldn’twannabeya #orhaveyouinelectedoffice

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As Featured on News Cult: How to Manage PMS

I’m hesitant to write this because I hate the sexist stereotypes that accompany PMS—that women are at the mercy of their hormones and go crazy when their cycles take over, or, worse, sync up, and can’t act rationally or be in charge of their moods, emotions, or actions. That we should basically be chained to a pole and locked in a shed until the Devil has left our body. I mean, it’s absurd. Like get the fuck out of here. That said, PMS is real, and it does have an effect on the mind and body (by definition—it’s called science look it up). So, while still refusing to comply with the bullshit patriarchal narrative that women are weak, powerless, and all experience PMS in the same debilitating way, I’d like to provide some tips that I’ve found helpful in managing the effects PMS can have on hormone levels and consequently mood and energy (physical and mental).

Don’t fight the tears

Embrace them. You may have the urge to spontaneously burst into tears, and you won’t necessarily understand why, so just let it flow. When it comes to all things menstruation, you just gotta let it flow. Plus, crying is fantastic—a good cry is the ultimate way to feel better. I don’t know how, it must be physiological, but man, crying it out is such an effective way to purge the bullshit. So we’re gaming the system here—using the shitty PMS side effects to our advantage. Because we’re CLEVER, AUTONOMOUS BEINGS WHO AREN’T RULED BY THEIR ENDOCRINE SYSTEMS.

Accept the bloating

It’s unavoidable. Resign yourself to stretch pants for the week so you won’t have the constant reminder of a constricting denim waistband. Like, we get it, jeans, WE DON’T FIT IN YOU AT THIS TIME. GET OFF OUR BACKS. OR, OUR STOMACHS. WHATEVER, IT’S A FIGURE OF SPEECH, YOU KNOW WHAT WE MEANT. #don’tactlikeyoudon’ttalktoyourpantstoo

Cut yourself some slack

If you’re like me, you’ll feel sick and your mood will be negatively affected, so when you feel extra unwell or flustered or impatient, and then get even more upset or annoyed with yourself for feeling that way, take a breath and remember that you feel that way for a reason—it’s much easier to give yourself a break when you’re coming from a compassionate and understanding perspective. Or, you can always scream at the first person you see and/or throw a couple punches. I find that helps too.

Use it as an excuse

Hey, if there’s something positive to be gained from this not-so-positive-overall thing we have to put up with each month, we will take it and walk as slow as possible run with it. We hate doing anything anyways, so if we have what we feel like is a more legitimate excuse to not do something than just our general lethargy and apathy, we’ll use it like ketchup—all day every day (especially if eggs are involved. Which they are, kind of, here. HEY-O self-props for the ovary-related pun!). Sorry, looks like we won’t be able to make it out to that birthday party on Friday night anymore, or brunch, or your niece’s bat mitzvah, or that family friend’s funeral—we’re just not feeling very well. #ifnotfeelingwellmeansnothavingtosocialize,we’llhappilytakeaterminalillness #wevolunteerastribute #wedon’tknowwhatallthepeoplewithZikaarecomplainingabout #they’vegotitmade #pleasenoticetheotherpregnancy/femalereproductivesystem-relatedtie-inviatheZikareference #I’mabortingit

Welcome it

With every round of PMS comes the sigh of relief you get to breathe knowing you’re not pregnant. Unless you’re trying to get pregnant, in which case, sucks for you! But for the rest of us who realize we’d make terrible parents, plus the planet really doesn’t need more people rn (thank you, Duggars), it’s time to celebrate. I suggest throwing yourself a party every month. You can get customized red M&Ms that say “PMS” on them, and balloons that say “It’s Not a Boy!” and “It’s Not a Girl!” and, most importantly, a cake. I’d recommend red velvet.

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As Featured on News Cult: Why I Support Planned Parenthood

After the extremely maddening, unjust, horrific shooting that took place at Planned Parenthood in Colorado Springs on Friday, I think now is an especially important time for me and others to show their support for Planned Parenthood. I’ve always supported it and always will, as long as it continues to be what it has been and is—a safe, accessible place for everyone, regardless of gender, to receive affordable and necessary healthcare. Regarding Friday’s shooter, I’ll just say this: why is it, that when the attacker is a Muslim, he’s an “evil, radical Islamic terrorist,” and when the subject of police force is black, he’s killed before he gets to exercise his right to due process, but when the shooter is white, he’s a “mentally deranged lone wolf,” brought into custody alive, and no one presumes to know his motives until he has his day in court? That is the most fucked up, backwards, infuriating inconsistency in societal judgment and law enforcement that exists. It seems more than safe to say that Robert Lewis Dear, a man who’s been accused of and in some cases charged with rape, domestic violence, animal cruelty, and being a peeping tom, decided to put his hunting gear on and shoot up his local Planned Parenthood, killing three innocent people and wounding nine others, all in the name of “no more baby parts”—another completely illogical, sick display of hypocrisy, which was clearly influenced (some may even say brainwashed) by the far-right bigoted propaganda in the form of doctored videos that represent a completely false portrait of Planned Parenthood, and countless other slanderous, hate-filled, ignorant displays of fundamentalist intolerance by extremist conservatives.

To set the record straight, let’s start off with some facts about Planned Parenthood. It’s been a healthcare resource for men and women for 99 years. There are 8 million+ Planned Parenthood activists, supporters, and donors. 3/4 of Planned Parenthood’s clients receive services to prevent unintended pregnancies. 34% of all Planned Parenthood health services are contraceptive services. The estimated number of unintended pregnancies averted by Planned Parenthood contraceptive services each year is 584,000. 3% of all Planned Parenthood services are abortion services. The increase in male Planned Parenthood clients from 2000 to 2010 was 105%. Planned Parenthood provides nearly 5 million people worldwide with sexual and reproductive health care and education each year. 76% of Planned Parenthood clients are at or below 150% of the federal poverty level. 8 in 10 Planned Parenthood clients are 20 years of age and older. And 1,000,000 clients are served by Planned Parenthood-supported partners in 10 developing countries.

I support Planned Parenthood because all of those things, all of those facts, are good. I believe that everyone, regardless of age, race, socioeconomic standing, sexual orientation, creed, should have equal access to healthcare. Unfortunately, because of the overwhelming disparity in wealth in the United States and worldwide, and the incredibly high cost of healthcare in the U.S. especially, a lot of people don’t have access to healthcare. But everyone has access to Planned Parenthood. Even if they don’t have insurance, or can’t afford treatment. Planned Parenthood accepts and will care for everyone, regardless of potential compensation. People who refer to Planned Parenthood as “an abortion clinic,” are, simply, wrong. And while I’m happy to take the wind out of the crutch that is the “Planned Parenthood is bad because ABORTION” argument, I also want to make it clear that I support Planned Parenthood BECAUSE it provides abortions, among countless other vital healthcare services. Abortion is safe. Abortion is legal. Abortion is a choice that is made individually. I don’t care if you don’t like abortions—don’t get one. But you sure as shit don’t have the right to tell me I can’t get one.

Don’t try to argue that abortion is the same as murder. Murder is what the Colorado Springs shooter did to those three innocent people, each of whom had spouses and young children. And no one should be forced into parenthood, especially if they aren’t ready for it or don’t want it. I don’t care if you think sex is a sin, and don’t believe in birth control because of your antiquated, unnatural, suppressive beliefs that cause most of you to end up molesting little boys—then don’t have sex. But you have no right to tell me or anyone else that we’re not allowed to have sex, and, furthermore, enjoy it, without having to reproduce as a consequence. There are lots of scientific arguments for why people shouldn’t reproduce, not least of which is overpopulation, which is leading to the rapid environmental degradation of the planet—but how about, I JUST DON’T WANT TO HAVE A KID, so I’m not fucking going to. Period.

Planned Parenthood is a safe haven from hyper-critical, imposing, overbearing attempts to control individual rights and freedoms. It provides non-judgmental, supportive healthcare for people in most need of it. It’s easy to step up onto a pedestal of moral superiority and cast shame upon people who don’t share your beliefs. It’s easy to operate from a place of violent power—which is what people who oppose Planned Parenthood to the point of voting to defund it on a federal level, and attacking its clinics, do. But despite all of those obstacles, Planned Parenthood fights every day to support everyone—whether that means providing a safe place to get an abortion, distributing free condoms, counseling patients on STDs, giving cancer screenings, or providing an affordable routine pap smear—no matter what. It’s a hell of a lot harder to fight against hate, and violence, and ignorance, than it is to perpetuate it—what Planned Parenthood does takes courage, and without it, so many of us would be lost. So I stand with them, and am not going to stop, despite acts aimed at terrorizing doctors who provide crucial, feasibly attainable healthcare and women who exercise their right to reproductive freedom.

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As Featured on News Cult: Why Whitney Way Thore, Star of TLC’s “My Big Fat Fabulous Life,” is My Hero

Whitney Way Thore is the star of the TLC show My Big Fat Fabulous Life, and she is my hero (along with her hilarious mother Babs, whoever invented Girl Scout cookies, and the person who finally got the middle finger emoji to happen). When I first heard of the show, I thought the title was offensive (because that’s what privileged white girls do). But then I actually watched it, and it’s anything but. Whitney put up a video of herself dancing in 2014 that went viral, and her career took off from there. Now, she not only has her own TV show, but she created and runs the No Body Shame (No BS) Campaign, teaches “Big Girl Dance Classes” at the Greensboro Dance Theater (where she grew up taking lessons in NC), is writing her first book, and travels the world spreading her body positivity message.

Honestly I’ve never seen a public figure who is so authentically and joyfully herself. She grew up dancing and that’s her self-proclaimed life purpose. But she has Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS), which is a hormonal disorder women can have that makes it really easy to gain weight and really hard to lose it, among other possible effects (e.g. infertility, low estrogen levels, etc.). So she’s gone through periods of massive weight gain and loss. And because of this, she’s struggled with her body image tremendously. So much so that she’s also battled severe eating disorders. But now, at one of her heaviest weights, she’s got more confidence than ever and is leading the battle against body shaming. And I think her use of the word “fat” is a perfect example of this: she owns it, reclaims it, and doesn’t allow herself to be ruled by its traditionally negative connotations.

And the way she’s achieved such a self-affirmed existence is shockingly simple: loving herself. Unconditionally. Her whole message is basically that every human, regardless of their size or appearance, is so worthy, and doesn’t deserve to be shamed or embarrassed or made to feel less than because of what they look like. It should be so obvious, but so few of us live that. It’s always “I’ll love myself if I lose 20 pounds, if I look good in a bikini, if someone else tells me I’m beautiful.” But Whitney is all about knowing that you’re enough as is, regardless of any self-perceived shortcomings, or anything anyone else criticizes about you. She believes and teaches and exemplifies how you don’t need to be validated by anyone else to feel valid.

Every time I watch an episode of her show, I’m so inspired and impressed by her all over again.  I think one of my favorite things about her is that she continues to dance despite and because of her body image, health, and weight struggles, and she clings to dancing as her one true love and salvation. And maybe that’s because I can relate—while I didn’t grow up in as regimented a dance environment as she did, I’ve always enjoyed dancing, and my best friend, who I could watch dance forever, has really taught me the freedom and value that dancing represents. So dance holds a special place in my heart.

But perhaps the reason I admire her most is because I don’t think I can do what she does. I don’t have the courage she does to live without shame about who she is or how she looks. I don’t have the resolve to know that my worth is defined by my mind, not my body. I cave to the pressure to hate myself all the time. And so I really do look to her as a role model, an example to strive for, and someone who represents hope. I wish I was strong enough to do what she does all on my own, but it’s so much easier to follow in someone else’s footsteps than to forge your own path. Which is so pathetic to say, but if I’m being honest, it’s true for me. At least right now.

But Whitney makes me think that it’s possible for me to live with sincere pride in myself and without fear of external judgment. That it’s possible to accept that I only ever want to wear leggings/expandable clothing, and no makeup, and maternity sweaters. That I don’t have to keep my expired skinny jeans in the back of my wardrobe—I may as well use that shit for kindle because all it’s doing right now is haunting me and I have enough skeletons in my closet. And that my love handles don’t say nearly as much about me as my self-directed shit-talking does. So that’s why she’s my hero (…is totally how a 5th grade report would end, right? Fuck it, this is how I’m ending it. Because I’M GREAT AND CONFIDENT AND DON’T NEED TO APOLOGIZE FOR MYSELF OR EXPLAIN WHY I HAVE THE WRITING SKILLS OF A 10-YR OLD).

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As Featured on News Cult: What Do You Wear to an Abortion?

You’re either pregnant or you’re not—there’s no “maybe,” despite how light the positive sign is on those four tests you took. But even your doctor seems hopeful. She says the urine test is “weakly positive.” She says she’ll do a blood test to get concrete results, and not to panic. But while you wait for your final truth, telling yourself that maybe, just maybe, those tests were “weakly positive” enough that they were actually negative, you’re pretty sure that you’re just fine tuning your skill at the delicate art of denial.

Afterwards, you remember back to seeing that first, faint plus sign, and feeling that it signified a sense of hope, despite all the dread. And now you’ve lost that hope—you’re without it. You are emptier. You will lie awake after and feel that something is missing. Your life is quieter, and while you keep standing still, the world keeps moving without you. You feel robbed, but you robbed yourself.

You wonder how long you can milk this “eating-for-two” thing. You think how thankful you are that you aren’t carrying this to term because of how much weight you’d gain. And you think how awful it is to think that. “What do you wear to an abortion?” you ask your boss. “Sweatpants?” you say, before he has a chance to answer, but also in the awkward pause left by your awkward question. “Probably,” he nods confidently. “And a giant pad. And they’ll give you pads to take home. And some to put in the freezer. Or, no, that’s for childbirth. I’m getting them all mixed up.” You think, what would I do without him. He’s far better equipped to deal with this than I am.

You’ve never wanted kids. You’ve always been afraid to have them. You actually kind of despise them. But, having life inside of you is, you think, weird. You’re embarrassed you can’t come up with a more sophisticated word to describe the feeling. But it’s just weird. You want to call it a baby, but that makes you sad. You feel weird calling it “a life,” because that sounds so new-agey, but you also hate the word “fetus.” Whatever you end up calling it, which varies each time, you feel that you should shield it. Protect it. Love it and nourish it. And instead, you’re killing it. You feel like it’s disrespectful to call it “it.”

You wonder if it’s a boy or a girl—and what it would look like. You feel bad drinking alcohol and coffee, and pushing on your stomach too hard, but you still do. You only have three days left with it. You want to talk to it, but wonder if it can hear you. You want to show it the world. But then you tell yourself, “Don’t be ridiculous, it’s not even really close to a person yet. It can’t feel anything.” You tell yourself not to get attached. No one else seems to be getting attached. They tell you, “only a few more days,” and, “it will be over soon.” They say, “We know what we have to do,” and “we have a game plan.” They tell you, “Get it taken care of ASAP.” “It’s really just a nothing thing.”

Someone you’re very close to will state, rhetorically, “I assume no one wants this pregnancy to proceed.” She’ll tell you, “Well you could have a miscarriage, which would be convenient.” She’ll mean well, or maybe she won’t, but it all comes out wrong. She won’t tell you that she, too, once went through the same thing, because she and her partner, people you trust, decide they don’t want that information to go public. She’ll tell you that withholding that information didn’t cause you any harm and it was born of an effort to not influence your decision. But it does harm you—because knowing it would’ve meant you weren’t alone. And knowledge is power. Especially when you’re going into a terrible mess blind. She insists that you “take care of this as soon as possible,” and that she is so relieved she doesn’t have to convince you how big a mistake it would be to have a baby. You wonder what twisted logic led to the conclusion that those statements weren’t influential, but telling you something relatable, and that would’ve lightened your burden, would’ve been. You feel betrayed.

You walk out of your room the day of, dressed in baggy sweatpants and a Red Sox shirt. You’ve really been trying to work on your underwear line lately, so you’re disappointed that even though the pants are loose, it’s still there. You consider changing into tighter spandex, but then you think, “It would be weird to wear a thong to an abortion, right? I could wear regular underwear, but the underwear line would be even worse then. They would judge me for wearing a thong. Plus, you can’t really wear pads with a thong. And I would just get it bloody and ruin it anyways. Thongs are meant for special occasions. For impressing people. Wear your worst underwear. It doesn’t matter if that gets wrecked.” You decide that he, and everyone else, yourself included, can deal with your underwear line today. He looks at you, sees your shirt, and smiles, but seriously, as he says, “don’t wear that.” He bleeds Dodger blue. And purple and gold. You laugh and say, “Are you serious? If anything, it’s symbolic to get this done in this shirt.” He asks, “Do you like the Red Sox?” You answer, “I don’t care, I just like Boston.” “Don’t wear that,” he laughs, but means it. You go to pick out a new shirt. You choose a forest green one. He says, semi-jokingly, “That is kind of Boston Celtics green.” You feign aggravation and say, “fine,” and then go back to your room to start over. He follows you as you start rummaging around your shirts, pulling them out onto the floor in a messy pile. You hold up one you got for free that says “Hooray for Boobies” on it: “Should I wear this one?” He laughs, “It would be really funny if you wore that.” You say, “Yeah, but I’m not sure I want to deal with the judgment or questions I’ll get.” “Yeah,” he says, “you probably shouldn’t wear that one.” You then move on to a plain white Hanes t-shirt that you once wore to a highlighter party—a party where everyone draws on each other’s white shirts in highlighter, and you’re all standing in black light so the highlighter looks neon. You hold that one up and say, laughing, “Maybe I should wear this one. It says, ‘You’re on my vagenda’ and ‘Born again virgin.’” He laughs and says, “Just wear the green one.” You look down at your dark blue toenails and, grasping at straws to please him, half-jokingly, say, “My toenails are Dodger blue, right?” He looks at them, smiles triumphantly, and says, “Yeah.” Crisis averted.

No one wants this baby. Except you. Kind of. But you know you can’t have it. You ask him how he feels about it and you tell him you’re sad, but you see in his eyes that he doesn’t feel the same. You’ll hear him say, “It’s the right decision” over and over again. He’s trying to feel what you feel, but it isn’t there. He won’t touch your stomach. Until one night he does. You ask him if you’re supposed to say bye. Are you supposed to say sorry? You want to ask him if he wants to spend time with it, but they’d think you’re crazy. You want it over with so your attachment doesn’t have time to keep growing. But you also don’t want to let go.

It only takes less than 10 minutes. You wish there was a heartbeat that you could hear. And then think you’re cruel for wishing that. You wonder if there is a heartbeat, but the doctor doesn’t offer any information. You don’t get to know your baby. She assumes you don’t want to. When you see the ultrasound after, you see the image that always has a baby in it. But yours doesn’t have a baby. Afterwards, you have a dream that there’s a baby in the picture. You wake up hopeful, but it’s too late.

You’re surrounded by signs. Multiple times every day, you see pregnant women, or babies, or something pops up on TV that’s about your situation. Before, you dismissed these as silly superstitions. After, you wonder about them. You’ll have a conference call with a writer and he will bring up a book about abortions. Your stomach will sink. He’ll ask you if you’ve had any personal experience with abortions. He’ll spend 10 minutes talking about them. He’ll tell you about a documentary he worked on that included footage of a real abortion. He’ll say, “After they suck the baby out, it goes into a vacuum chamber, and then they sort through the baby parts. So in the documentary, you see a close-up of a fetus hand while they sort through it.” You sit there, listening, shocked. You are speechless. You gulp and force yourself to play along—you say, “Wow, that’s really interesting.” You feel sick. You were already wondering about your baby—when they took it out, did it die right away? Did it feel any pain? But now, the image of it being sucked out and thrown away, but not big enough to have any parts to sort through, will be vividly in your mind. Your doctor will tell you that she’s pregnant, afterwards. You will start crying as you say, “congratulations.” A young mother and her young daughter will sit next to you on the bus, afterwards. The daughter will point at the butterflies on your bag and say “spider?” You’ll say, “Butterfly.” She will point at each of them, one by one, and each time, you’ll say, “butterfly.” You will underestimate how hard this will be for you. Maybe it’s supposed to be this hard. Maybe these signs are the universe’s way of punishing you. In the waiting room, you’re surrounded by visibly pregnant women and their babies. You wonder who, if anyone else there, is one of you. You are bombarded with life and reminders of what you’re doing. It haunts you.

You resent everything you’ve given up because of him. You resent everything you’ve put on hold for him. You resent that you’ve put yourself on the backburner because of him. This is his fault. You blame him for this. Nothing he does is quite right. Nothing he does is enough. Even when he brings you flowers, and makes you tea. You bite your tongue when he’s always late—don’t push him away. You did that already once—you were too needy. He won’t call you “babe” anymore. He’ll grow tired of you. He won’t touch you. When you cry, he will eventually limply throw his arm against you in a weak attempt at what he thinks he’s supposed to do—you think, it would be better if he didn’t touch me at all. You ask him if he will talk to you about it at some point. He asks, annoyed, “why is it so?–” and then stops himself, but you know the rest: “Why is it so hard for you to move on?” You can tell he just wants to go to sleep. He’s a simple man. You think to yourself, over and over, “I killed my own baby.” Then, you think, “I killed my baby for you. It was ours but I should’ve been looking out for the part that was me. And the part that was you that you didn’t want.” You think, I can’t do this—I can’t lose him, but even more, I can’t struggle every day, trying to stay in his good graces, trying to stay acceptable and desirable to him. You think, I am destroying myself. You feel that you’re about to break. He will break your heart. It will be your fault.

You think, it’s too late—I will never have this baby. This baby is gone. Yet I cannot let it go. You think, you’d rather go through this alone, because now, you’ve never been so lonely. You think, you can’t share a bed with someone you feel so utterly distant from. You think, you feel more alone in bed with him than sleeping by yourself on the couch. You spend the whole day envisioning saying that to him when he calls, but he doesn’t call. You hate him. Don’t complain that he’s shoving you aside to wait in the wings, because he’ll walk away again. Just give him the benefit of the doubt. Convince yourself it’s not settling. You’re not good enough for him, so tread lightly. This situation is delicate. You want to yell at him, and say, “You’re doing it all wrong.” You think he may think he’s doing it all right.

You are alone in this, whether you like it or not. You are isolated. This cross is yours alone to bear. People can try, but can’t fully break in from the outside. And some of them won’t try—they will abandon you. This has happened in your body, and therefore even more so in your mind than anyone else’s. It only gets worse with each passing day. How are you supposed to move on? Everyone else is moving. How do they do it? How do you move like them? They expect you to keep moving. They don’t understand. Yet, you’ve hardly cried this entire time. You feel fine and then wonder if you are. You feel fine and then wonder if that’s ok. You wonder if you’ll carry this heavy weight your whole life. You wonder if it will get lighter. You wonder if it should. You wonder if your regret will pass. You wonder if you’ll forgive yourself.

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