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Friday, February 15, 2019

The Types of Prejudice and How to Recognize Them by Their Micro-Aggressions

Types of Prejudice and How to Recognize Them by Their Micro-Aggressions

 

February, though the month of love, is also Black History Month. It is a time to reflect on how far we have come as a society with being accepting of African-Americans and people who are generally different. However, it is also a time to consider how far we still need to go. Racism is a social system that many of us participate in indirectly. When we see inequality and we refuse to speak up about, we have helped to perpetuate that inequality.

It is, however, impossible to speak up about inequality when we do not know what it is exactly. Inequality is the unequal treatment of particular people based on superficial characteristics about them, especially those that they are unable to change. This article will specifically discuss the different types of prejudices and how to recognize them by their micro-aggressions.

Micro-aggressions are seemingly harmless statements and actions that subtly work to perpetuate negative stereotypes about a group of people. This could be in the form of jokes or covert actions that the sayer or doer is not even aware of.


 

1. Racism

This may be the most famous one, especially during February. Racism is when people are treated differently because they are a different race. Systemic racism is when laws are put in place to make sure that certain people cannot advance in society.

Micro-Aggressions that are used to perpetuate racism include:

  • Seeing something that is ill-mannered or overly-aggressive and saying “That is so black”
  • Attributing particular genres of music to particular races and excluding others from that genre
    • Rap is black music Iggy Azalea cannot participate
    • Country is white music and K. Michelle cannot participate
  • Saying “You speak like a white person” when a black person, or non-white person, speaks properly.

 

2. Sexism

Sexism is when people are treated differently on the basis of being a woman or man.

Micro-Aggressions that are used to perpetuate sexism include:

  • Telling guys that they are acting like girls when they show emotion
  • Telling women that they are overreacting because of their hormones or menstrual cycle (especially if sayer is completely unaware of the women’s menstrual cycle)
  • Blaming women for sexual assault because of their choice in clothing
  • Not taking men’s sexual assault claims seriously because they are men
  • Assuming that men and women could not do certain things because of their gender

 

3. Ageism

Ageism is when people are treated differently on the basis of being a certain age. Recently, the age group that has been getting a lot of hate are millennials, born between 1980 and 1995.

Micro-Aggressions that are used to perpetuate sexism include

  • Infantilizing Millennials (making people view them as children or infants when they are adults). Saying things like “These kids today” when talking about millennials.
  • Assuming that because of someone’s age, they will not know about certain topics or how to do certain things
    • “You’re 21, what do you know about love?”
    • “You’re like 50, do you even know how to use a smart phone?”
  • Refusing to consider applicants for a job or program who are of a certain age

 

4. Xenophobia

Xenophobia is when people are treated differently because they are from a different location. This could be as of big a difference as a different country or as small of a difference as a different city.

Micro-Aggressions that are used to perpetuate xenophobia include

  • Making negative associations with people from different areas.
    1. “Dominicans are always angry”
    2. “You’re from Africa? Do you hunt lions”
  • “Oh, you are from the south? You must be uneducated, did you graduate high school?”
  • Mimicking fake accents from different places as a way to belittle the people from those places

 

5. Religious Prejudice

Religious prejudice is when people are treated differently because of their religion. The most famous form of this is Islamophobia (the mistreatment of Muslims), and Anti-Semitism (the mistreatment of Jews) because of their religion.

Micro-Aggressions that are used to perpetuate religious prejudice include

  • Assuming that any religion that differs from yours is wrong or a lie
  • Assuming that all Muslims are terrorists
  • Assuming that all Christians hate homosexuals
  • Joking about and mimicking religious traditions and practices as a way to belittle the people of that religion

 

6. Sexual Orientation Discrimination

Sexual orientation discrimination is when people are treated differently on the basis of identifying as a certain sexual orientation. The most common form is homophobia which is discrimination against homosexuals.

Micro-Aggressions that are used to perpetuate sexism include

  • Labeling platonic affection between friends of the same sex as “gay”
  • Labeling undesirable things as gay
  • Making “gay jokes” in general
  • Assuming that because a male is gay, he is not allowed to be masculine
  • Assuming that if a woman is gay she is not allowed to be feminine
  • Assuming that sexuality is connected to physical ability or emotional stability

 

7. Classism

Classism is when people are treated differently on the basis of their social class. This could be due to the neighborhood the people live in or the amount of money that the people have

Micro-Aggressions that are used to perpetuate classism include

  • Assuming that people who are apart of a lower income class are uneducated
  • Assuming that people who live in the inner city are thugs or dangerous
  • Assuming that people who live more expensive neighborhoods are rich or stuck up
  • Refusing to work with people from different class

 

Question of The Week:

Have you ever experienced discrimination? What was done or said?

 

Answer by Tabitha Barron, Owner of KYKS – Keeping Your Kids Safe | Facebook Website

I successfully completed a phone interview, and [the interviewer] said [that] I pretty much had the job and invited me to complete the process onsite. I drove 16 hours with 2 children in the car. When I arrived, the receptionist called to inform [the interviewer] that I was there. [The Interviewer] came out, looked [at me, a black woman], and returned behind closed doors. [The receptionist] informed me the job was no longer available and my interview had been canceled.

 

Answer by Gregory Wilson, Musician |  Website

I was fortunate enough to be a High School Junior on an overnight pre-college program [trip]. [We went] to an Ivy League school. It was a beautiful campus [and] awesome experience. We had been treated to go see a movie and had the management report [us] and threaten to call police on us, because they felt threatened by our presence. We were a mix of black and brown kids. All excited because it was the new action film out and had all the subsequent privileges taken away

I think, I am pretty accustomed to racism and violence in my city… but I think what hurt from me about this was that for some part of me I was expecting that people in a college Town where progressive thoughts are consistently being talked about would somehow have more understanding and empathy only to be proven wrong 

 

Answer by SK Samuruddin, Blogger | Facebook | Pinterest | Website

Yes, of course. Whenever you are on the internet, people see Indians in a [lower] manner, we all are aware of that. If you ask me personally, no. I have never been there. One of the classic cases [which we may all s be aware of is when] PewDiePie released a diss track against T-Series, but the lyrics are specially targeted towards us [Indians], and we are aware of that. [At the] end of the day, it was portrayed that Indians couldn't take sarcasm. In these days, social media, prejudice has become a new trend to [bring discrimination] to limelight and gain publicity.

 

 

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Final Thoughts

It is important that we not only be able to recognize overt racism, but that we recognize the micro-aggressions that perpetuate discrimination and make room for systemic racism. The answers above are from real people who have experienced discrimination and prejudice and were brave enough to share their stories. I would like to thank those people for being a light that shines through the darkness though others have tried to dim it.

I ask all my lovelies to keep an eye out for discrimination and if you see something, say something.

Friday, February 8, 2019

Love Is

Love Is. . .

 

 

Last week we spoke about what love is not. This week we are speaking about what love is. With 7 days until Valentine’s Day, I think this topic is just in time. The list below contains 7 characteristics of love. If your love life is lacking any of these characteristics, I challenge you to think critically about whether you are experiencing true love.

 


 

 

Love Is…

 

1. Scary

When you love, you give someone power over your heart to break it. That’s a scary feeling. Many of us want to be in control of our feelings and emotions. The truth is, when we begin to fall in love, we usually trust that people will not break our heart. Of course, over time that trust could wither, as I mentioned in a previous post (Love Is Not), and that is essentially what makes love so scary; the thought that someone could break your trust and cause you to experience a pain like no other.

 

2. Relentless

When you love someone, you do not give up easy. Love will cause you to stay and try again to make it work. In toxic situations, of course, it is okay to leave, and I encourage walking away. However, when all it takes is some communication and compromise, Love is worth relentless pursuit.

 

3. Invaluable

When you love someone, you handle their heart as carefully as you would an item that is impossible to replace. Essentially, their heart is impossible to replace. I personally look at love as a blessing from God. I believe it is given to me by God, so I am careful to take care of it.

Whether you believe in God or not (your choice), I am sure that there is something in your life that you value and that could not be replaced. Treat your partner’s heart the same way as you would this item.

 

4. Patient

When in love, you will not pressure your partner into things that they are not ready for. You will wait patiently. This may include sex, children, a career change, etc. This is not to say that a gentle nudge of encouragement is wrong, but when it is clear that they are not ready, you will wait patiently.

However, it is also important to set standards for yourself. If you are ready for something that your partner is absolutely not ready for, and may never be ready for, it may be time to reevaluate the relationship. If waiting compromises your long-term happiness, move on. If you do not mind waiting, stay. However, the pressure on your partner will only make them repel against your desires even more. This is especially true if you are dating someone with anxiety. To read more on that topic click the link.

 

5. Freeing

The best part of being in love was the freedom in being my complete self with my partner. I did not have to pretend to be something that I was not in order to fit in. I did not have to filter out my slang or think of the politically correct way to say things. I could be silly, serious, curious, or a total nerd, and that was fine. I could lay next to my partner in silence and that was fine. Everything was fine. I was completely free.

 

6. Altruistic

Altruism means doing a good deed without the expectation that you will get something in return. Love is truly altruistic. When in love, you want your partner to be happy and successful. You do things for them because you love them, not because they will pay you back.

I want to clarify that if the relationship is one-sided or toxic, then altruism does not apply here. If you are only giving and never getting anything in return, you may be experiencing some early signs of abuse. Here are 10 Signs of Domestic Abuse if you need it.

 

7. The Best Feeling in the World

Overall, love is the best feeling in the world. It may be scary, but once you take the chance to fully experience and embrace it, love becomes something you do not ever want to let go.

I often hear "love hurts." I will make the argument that love it the best feeing in the world, and what actually hurts, is the absence of love.

 


 

Question of The Week:

How would you define love?

 

Answer by SK Samuruddin | Facebook | Pinterest | Website

Love (the feeling) can't be explained in [only] a few words. Love for me is when you unconditionally think good about someone. That's love! You keep thinking about them whatever you do, wherever you go. Love is a feeling which will keep you motivated [when you are the most] frustrated and lost, it’s a feeling, which [goes beyond] physical contact.

 

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Final Thoughts

Love is beautiful and magical. Though scary, it is not something we should avoid. We should fully embrace it and take every measure to protect it.

Happy Valentine’s Day, My Lovelies.

I pray that it is full of love in the truest and purest sense.

 


 

Leave A Comment

If you enjoyed this post, leave a comment and let me know. If you have anything you’d like to share privately, you can contact me at contact@mishspeakstruth.com. I look forward to hearing from you all.

 

Friday, February 1, 2019

Love Is Not...

LOVE IS NOT

 

We made it through the first month of 2019 Guys! First, let’s take this time out to give ourselves credit for making it through the first month, we worked on redefining ourselves (Remember this is an ongoing process), we learned signs of abuse, and we learned how to be supportive of a partner with relationship anxiety.

February is the month of love! I will talk next week about what love is, but I think it is important to talk about what love is not first. Many people confuse love with behaviors and feelings that are connected to love, but not synonymous with love.

Below is a list of 7 things that are commonly confused for love, but is NOT love


 

Love Is Not. . .

 1. TRUST

 

If I had a dollar for every time I have heard the lie, “You cannot love someone if you do not trust them” I might be rich. This is utterly false. Do you have a sibling? Or a family member you are close to and is around your age? Do you love them? If yes, would you trust them in EVERY context? Probably no!

I have a niece that is a teen. I love her with all my heart and would go to war for her. However, when I leave, I lock my door because I do not trust her not to rummage through my hair supplies or skin products. She has proven herself to be untrustworthy in that particular context, but I do not love her any less

 

2. FORCED

 

There is absolutely NOTHING you could do to make someone love you. You could be the best lover in the world; you could be by their side through the toughest financial and health situations; but the decision to love you back rests entirely upon them.

Do not question your value or worth as a lover but understand that sometimes we simply will not be what another person wants. Some people like their jewelry from Kay Jewelers and some from Claire’s. It’s 100% their choice, if they do not choose an authentic, valuable lover.

 

3. INCONSISTENT

 

Love does not wax and wane with the passing of days. It is impossible for someone to constantly alternate between “They love you,” and “they love you not”. Love is a consistent action.

People also consistently make time for what they genuinely love. If there is extreme inconsistency in your partner’s willingness to make time for you (even 10 minutes out of their day), it is likely that they do not love you. Working adults are busy, but a 10-minute call or quick text to say “Hey baby, I was thinking about you and just wanted to remind you that I love you” is more than sufficient.

 

4. ABUSIVE

 

Under no circumstance, could someone who loves you knowingly abuse you, while fully aware that they are hurting you. This includes physical, emotional, mental, sexual and financial abuse. There is no justification or argument for this one.

ABUSE IS NOT LOVE!

*NOTE: If you need help identifying the signs of abuse, please CLICK HERE

 

5. UNSURE

 

When you are in love, you will know it.”. There will be no question about it. It is a feeling unlike no other. It’s blissful, fulfilling, and empowering. It motivates you to be better and want more. Anything less is not love. If you have to question it, it is not love. If someone else has to question their love for you, that is not love.

 

6.SHAMEFUL

 

I am a millennial, so I feel confident in saying that our outlook on love has shifted for the worse. It is shameful to fall in love. It is not a crime or a sign of weakness to let your guard down. Falling in love is powerful and takes strength. You have to be a strong person to give someone power over your heart that way and trust yourself to heal and survive if they ever break it.

Everyone wants to be promiscuous or simply “talk and see where it goes,” but they put roadblocks up to stop themselves from going down a path of love.

Love is beautiful and magical. It is nothing to be ashamed of. When you truly find it, embrace it.

 

7. ENOUGH

 

After all of this, it is important to realize that love may also not be enough to sustain a relationship on its own. Love needs to work in harmony with the 4 C’s for a successful relationship: commitment, consistency, communication, and comfort.

 


 

 

Final Message

I wish you the best this February, whether you are in love, in an unrequited love affair, actively searching for love, or on a love hiatus. Whatever the case, it is important to recognize what love is not. I will meet you back here next week to discus what love actually is.

 


 

 

Leave a Comment

Comment below and let me know how you enjoyed this post. Or send me an email at Contact@MishSpeaksTruth.com

 

Sunday, January 20, 2019

What to Remember When Dating Someone with Relationship Anxiety

Dating Someone with Relationship Anxiety

 

Anxiety is basically a disorder of worrying. People with anxiety may worry about specific topics (like relationships, public speaking, specific phobias, etc.), and some people may worry about everything. Whatever the source of the worrying, it may cause some trouble in the person’s relationship.

 

This post is a guide for people who are dating someone with relationship anxiety. Trust me, I know that we are hard to deal with. However, if you love us, and want to continue to deal with us, please read this article in its entirety and attempt to incorporate some of the following advice into your relationship. Next week, I will be addressing tips on dating with anxiety. That post will give tips directly to the people with anxiety who are also trying to date, or in a relationship

 

 

1.       Be Patient while we work up the courage to express our feelings.

 

Sometimes it is hard for us to express our feelings. We may need some time to get our thoughts together because anxiety makes them race like crazy. Just encourage us to talk when we are ready and let us know that you will be there to listen.

 

2.     Don’t assume that we don’t want to talk to you or that we are angry

 

We do! We want to talk to you and tell you every thought that crosses our mind. However, we don’t want to push you away or make you lose interest because of all of our anxious thoughts. So sometimes we need space to get our thoughts together.

 

3.    Don’t tell us our thoughts are irrational, we already know that.

We know that our thoughts are irrational sometimes. We don’t need you to remind us. We tell ourselves that all the time, but it does not make the thoughts go away

 

4.    We may need confirmation for our anxious thoughts, not our sober ones.

 

We don’t think you’re cheating. We don’t think you’re lying. We don’t think you’re doing anything wrong. Our sober mind knows that. However, when anxiety hits, it convinces us that there are signs that were not actually there. The confirmation you give us, is what we use as the “I told you so” proof to our anxious thoughts.

 

Here’s an example of the type of conversation we may have with our anxious thoughts:

 

Anxious thought: What if s/he said that s/he was busy, but he was really with someone else?

 

Us: Well s/he doesn’t even have enough time to spend with someone else

 

Anxious thought: Well there was that time he stayed out late, maybe he met her then.

 

Us: *asks bae for confirmation that s/he was not with anybody else*

 

Bae: *Confirms that s/he did not meet up with anyone else.*

 

Us to Our Anxiety: See I told you s/he wouldn’t cheat on me! I have to stop listening to you!

 

As you can see, we (the anxious people) trusted you the entire time. We just needed proof so that our anxious thoughts can shut up.

 

5.    There may be a lot of tears, don’t run from them.

 

I often say, “I am a cry baby”. I will start the waterworks at the drop of a dime, but I don’t like to cry. I actually feel worse when I cry because I feel like I am burdening my partner, especially in situations where I see that my thoughts are irrational.

In these moments, I don’t need my partner to leave me alone, or give me space. I just need them to be there physically and remind me that they will listen when I am ready to talk. I am sure this is the case for others with anxiety as well.

 

6.    Ask how to help during panic attacks and what to do during future attacks.

 

Panic attacks are different from person to person. Sometimes, it’s crying and screaming, sometimes it’s the inability to breathe, and sometimes it feels as severe as a heart attack.

 

If you sense that it is an emergency (the person may hurt himself/herself or if they are showing extreme physical symptoms) call emergency services for help.

 

If it is unnecessary to call emergency services, ask how you can help the person. They may need a hug, or to be held. They may need you to just stay next to them or stay on the phone with them.

 

When the attack calms, have an honest conversation about what your partner wants you to do if future attacks occur.

 

My anxiety attacks are mainly crying uncontrollably and hyperventilating. I sometimes feel like I can’t breathe. I usually just need my partner to hold me, without words until I calm down. Once calm, it’s helpful if they stay with me or stay on the phone for a bit until my mind is no longer on the situation and the attack.

 

7.    Find out your partner’s love language and learn to speak it

 

Anxiety in relationships is sometimes about your partner not feeling worthy to even be with you. Show them you love them in the way that they best understand it. Whether it be with words, actions, quality time, gifts, or physical tough. Learn how your partner feels most love and do that.

 

 

I wish you all the best when dealing with someone who has anxiety. I know that it is hard on you but think about how hard it must be on the person who actually has the anxious thoughts and feelings. A relationship is about working together. Be a team and work together to get through all of the obstacles that come with dating someone with anxiety.

 

Wednesday, January 9, 2019

Recognizing Abuse

Recognizing Abuse

 

In light of all the recent news stories (Surviving R. Kelly and the Cyntoia Brown Story), it is imperative that this topic is discussed  and done thoroughly. Many women (and men) do not know how to recognize the beginning signs of abuse. For this reason, they often accept the beginning stages and before they know it, they are locked into a dangerously abusive and completely manipulative relationship.

I am going to point out a few techniques of abusers.

 

1 – Foot and the Door Technique (Just Do This Little Thing)

  • What is it?
    • This is where abusers will get their victims to agree to one thing, and then to more progressively worse things as time goes on.

 

  • What’s an example?
    • In Surviving R. Kelly, the victims stated that R. Kelly would start off by telling the girls and young women to call him “Daddy”.

 

    • If they agreed, especially quickly and without hesitation, it showed him that they are easily submissive. He would then tell them that they could not talk to people and other people could not talk to them.

 

    •  If they were still in agreement, it would go to controlling what they can eat, wear, and do. If the victim stayed through that, he began to hit them and control them even more.

 

  • What to do?
    • Do not agree to anything that is remotely submissive or demeaning – especially in the beginning of the relationship. I understand that some people are into more exploratory sexual fantasies, however unless you discuss your boundaries and limits fully with your partner and consensually agree on that lifestyle, it is important that you do not show signs that you would blindly submit.

 

2- Isolation (You Can’t See Them Anymore)

  • What is it?
    • Many abusers will also isolate their victim away from their family. They will tell the victims that only the abuser loves them. They may move them far away from family and friends.

 

  • What’s an example?

             Statements like the following are examples:

 

    • Limiting communication with family

 

    • Moving far away from friends and family

 

    • Changing cell phone numbers and passwords without victim’s knowledge

 

             All of these things were seen on Surviving R. Kelly.

 

  • What to do?
    • Ensure that you are not allowing your partner to diminish time with your friends and family, or move you away from all of your loved ones suddenly

 

    • Remember that just because you are in a romantic relationship does not mean you need to limit you familial and platonic relationships that came before.

 

3 – Micro-cheating (Technically)

  • What is it?
    • This is where abusers do things that are “technically “ not cheating. They talk to other people, have dates, accept DMs and pictures but say “I didn’t do anything physical with this person, so I have not technically cheated.

 

  • What’s an example?
    • Hiding a friendship and messages with someone else but claiming they are ”just friends”.
      • If you know all of their other friends, there should be no reason to be secretive about a specific friend or set of friends

 

  • What to do?
    • Set clear standards in the beginning and clearly define cheating for you. Cheating is not just physical. Cheating is anything that goes against the mutually agreed upon terms of a relationship. However, you both must come to a mutual agreement by discussing your relationship boundaries. If you two cannot agree, it may be best to avoid this relationship altogether.

 

4 – Minimizing / Gaslighting (You’re Crazy)

  • What is it?
    • Minimizing: Making the victim think that they are over-reacting and they are obsessing over small things.

 

    • Gaslighting: This is a technique where the abuser tries to make the victim feel like they are crazy and question their own sanity.

 

  • What’s an example?

           The following statements are examples:

 

    • Minimizing: “You’re over-reacting. It was just oral. It’s not like I went all the way with her.”

 

    • Gaslighting: “I don’t know what you’re talking about. You didn’t see me with anyone else. I never cheated.”

 

  • What to do?
    • Don’t let anyone make you question your sanity, especially about their wrongdoings.

 

    • If it is important to you, it is important, and do not let anyone tell you otherwise.

 

5 – Humiliation / Punishment

  • What is it?
    • This is where the abuser purposely embarrasses the victim (Humiliation) or punishes them for perceived wrongdoings.

 

  • What’s an example?
    • In Surviving R. Kelly, the victims stated that R. Kelly would often tell the girls and young women that they were stupid for not doing little things right. They said that he would make them perform sexual acts in front of others as a way of showing power and control (Humiliation),

 

    • They also stated that if they refused to oblige, he would hit them, bind them to beds, withhold food and water, and confiscate their cell phones. They also reported that he would also withhold his affection (Punishment).

 

  • What to do?
    • Take note of how people talk to you, especially when around others. If they say things or try to get you to do things that is embarrassing, or if they try to punish you for doing things they dislike, it may be time to walk away.

 

6 – Deflection (It’s Your Fault)

  • What is it?
    • This is where abusers will try to take the blame off of themselves and put it on the victim.

 

  • What’s an example?

 

    • “I wouldn’t have hit you if you had listened to me”

 

    • “I only cheated because you work too much”

 

    • “This was all your fault”

 

  • What to do?
    • Set and enforce your standards. Do not allow people to deflect. Remind them and yourself, that you do not deserve to be treated poorly, not even if you made a mistake. Mistakes are human, abuse is not!

 

7 – Threats / Violence (I’ll Kill You)

  • What is it?
    • Threats are used to intimidate or scare the victim into doing with the abuser says.

 

    • Violence can be against the victim, the victim’s family, or the victim’s property.

 

  • What’s an example?
    • Threat: “If you don’t do what I say, I will kill you and/or your family”

 

    • Violence: The abusers may hit the victim, the victim’s loved ones, or damage valuable possessions.

 

  • What to do?
    • Please do not let it get to this point. Many abusers will show the previous signs before turning to threats and violence. If it has already gotten to this point, please find a safe way out. You can contact the domestic violence hotline at 1-800-799-SAFE (7233) or visit https://www.thehotline.org/help/

 

 

 

Please be safe! Here is a resource if needed

National Domestic Violence Hotline

1-800-799-SAFE (7233)

https://www.thehotline.org/help/

 

 

The Types of Prejudice and How to Recognize Them by Their Micro-Aggressions

Types of Prejudice and How to Recognize Them by Their Micro-Aggressions   February, though the month of love, is also Black History Mont...