You Fucked Up. Now What?

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In both my personal and professional lives, I am shocked when I come across grown ass adults who not only employ maladaptive behaviors, but defend them as inevitable.

“This is who I am,” they say when you point it out. If you’re lucky, they might stop and even apologize after the initial burst(s) of defensiveness and justification. If you’re not lucky, calling out someone’s abusive, intrusive, manipulative, and downright insulting behavior can backfire in ways that are hard to predict. They may (remember this for later):

  • double down on their abuse towards their victim
  • make you a target of their abuse as well, or make others who defend you a target of their abuse so you stop asking for help
  • attack you into backing down
  • gaslight you into believing that you’re the one who is the problem
  •  manipulate others who don’t have the whole story into taking their side
  • “tap in” others like them as reinforcements
  • wage a social and economic campaign to discredit you
  • stop the behavior, and then start back up again when your shields are down
  • employ a different maladaptive behavior, challenging you to address it separately.

Do you recognize this person? Are you dealing with them right now and don’t know what to do? If you are, first of all, I’m sorry. We live in a world that makes you responsible for being wary about these kinds of people, looking out for the red flags, and picking up the pieces after the abuse.

There is an infinite amount of literature and unsolicited advice out there for victims. Resources? Ehhhh… not so much. Social and financial support? Ehhhh… maybe if you’re lucky. And I wholeheartedly believe that it’s designed that way, which is why I’m not talking to the victims in this piece. I’m talking to the abusers.

  • Do you recognize yourself as this person?
  • Are you getting defensive?
  • Do you think maybe I should mind my own business?
  • Or maybe that I don’t know jack shit, and I should just shut the fuck up?

Hi. I’m Andrea. Let’s talk.

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Basic Latina: A Podcast

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A few months ago, my sister reached out to me with a dilemma. She wanted to start a podcast, but had lots of anxiety about it. I told her to do it. Men don’t question themselves this much when they want to do something, I said, they just go ahead and do it.

Today, Basic Latina Podcast is live with six episodes under its belt. Below is my episode.

In it, I discuss many of the things I’m always talking about: growing up Latina, being raised to uphold patriarchal values, dating, and exploring the illogical standards that we put on each other, and why.

It’s long, but it’s a nice little snippet of our personalities. And if you want to keep listening, Basic Latina is available on YouTube, CastBox, SoundCloud, and wherever you get your get your podcasts.

The Price of Being Complicit

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Before anyone gets offended, please think of this: these points and examples that I am including in this article put words to the very real systems of abuse, discrimination and exploitation that people in our society experience. 

Please take this as an opportunity to learn about the things that we women, the disenfranchised and the abused talk about among ourselves and wish for the rest of the world to understand.

We all agree that our society needs a change. Nothing will until we as individuals put our biases and our own assumptions about how the world works aside, and listen, and try to understand.

And if you experience any discomfort from reading this piece, please take a moment to evaluate where that discomfort comes from, and address it.  Continue reading

We Need to Talk About The Man-Child Epidemic

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This started as a response to Emma Lindsay’s story “Why Do Men Put So Little Effort Into Serious Dating?” and it got a little long.

Every time I try to venture onto a different platform, I feel like I have to give an overview of my personal experiences with men, respectability politics, and social expectations as a rule in order to legitimize that message, and that’s exhausting just to think about. Plus: trolls.

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Too Big to Stream? By canceling sci-fi series @Sense8, is @Netflix going the way of cable?

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With their decision to cancel the sci-fi series Sense8 less than a month after season 2 premiered, and after a lackluster response to fans, the parallels between Sense8’s BPO and Netflix’s current business strategies are uncanny. 

Never Forget

Netflix’s humble beginnings as a DVD rental mail service was revolutionary. No longer did you have to go to a video rental store, hope they still had a movie you wanted to see, and wait in line. With Netflix, you could get your favorite movies in your mailbox, watch at your leisure, and not worry about the late fees.

That’s right kids. Back in the day if you kept a movie you’d rented after 3 or 5 days, you’d be hit with late fees. I’m not even going to talk about the crap you got if you didn’t rewind a VHS tape.

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Da struggle.

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That Whole Thing About My Old Apartment

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No matter how hard I try to not talk about myself, sometimes other people force my hand. So here we go again.

During the Valentine’s Day weekend of 2016, my apartment was flooded. My  apartment was and is managed by Aizer Realty, specifically by Joseph Aizer. I am making this information public because I have just found out today that Joseph Aizer and 147 Hamilton LLC have taken me to small claims court for unpaid rent, and at this point, there is no reason to be quiet.

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Bodega

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She knew him as one of the boys that liked to hang out outside of the bodega. He was always nice and she would always smile. But while she could recognize him, point him out from a crowd, she didn’t know his name.

One night she dropped her keys and it all changed. He held the door open for her when it happened, caught them in midair before she could react. They laughed. They talked, and it was as if they had known each other for years, so that hours later they were still sitting on her front stoop, dreading the moment they would have to say good bye.

They never did, instead making plans for the next night and the next, until they were spending every waking moment together.

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On Grief

Some of you may already know that my father passed away last night after a year-long battle with ALS.

Some of you may also know that I received the news from Facebook, or rather, from a Facebook post publicized by his pastor within hours of his demise, who I’m sure was given permission to share the news by my father’s wife, Miriam. Because being a good person only matters if everyone knows.

And so here we are.

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How Male Wish Fulfillment Went From James Bond To Donald Trump

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Daniel Craig in Casino Royale

During November of 2012, right after the release of the James Bond sequel Skyfall, Washington Post columnist Richard Cohen penned a hilarious opt-ed titled: James Bond and the new sex appeal. In it, Cohen, a middle-aged man himself, bemoaned the fact that Daniel Craig’s James Bond was a chiseled, muscled sex-god, and sadly, a Bond that no longer reminded him of himself. In his own words:

Craig is 44, but neither gravity nor age has done its evil work on him. Nothing about him looks natural, relaxed — a man in the prime of his life and enjoying it. Instead, I see a man chasing youth on a treadmill, performing sets and reps, a clean and press, a weighted knee raise, an incline pushup and, finally, something called an incline pec fly (don’t ask). I take these terms from the Daniel Craig Workout, which you can do, too, if your agent and publicist so insist. Otherwise, I recommend a book….

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Are You Happy?

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In my last post, I posed some questions that are key for self-actualization. They are:

  • Are you doing the right thing?
  • Are you a good person?
  • Are you making the right decisions?
  • AND: Are you making a positive impact for the world around you?

But I forgot the most important question of them all, and I want to talk about it more about it today.

Are you happy?

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