Feminism

Critique of Woman

Artist: Genetics Social Construct Trauma

Subject title: Woman. Will go to the highest bidder. Some damage. Artist may go for a cheaper price as the result of damage. Recommend a blue frame to accent subject’s eyes. All sales final. If the subject doesn’t compliment your aesthetic, others are available. Some pieces available for download and filtered for optimal aesthetic value and commodity purposes. Note: Worker artist’s sales are made to the artist’s agent as opposed to the actual artist due to industry standards.

Subject gender: Unspecified. Appears to be a prepubescent boy though genitalia suggests possible trans. Nothing really to fetishize here. Pretty eyes though. Man-hater. Probably gay. Doesn’t look its age, but age is primarily reserved as only a number if you want to fuck a minor. Subject should stop dying its hair and look its age. Stop trying to be young unless cougar or fetish fap grade. Experts agree subject is neither of the latter.

Filter: Same one America uses. Hopes and Dreams.

Museum: Currently resides in A Moment of Raw Truth. Patriarchy Hall. Misogyny Row. Adjacent to the Hall of America’s Denial of Racism and Genocide.

Note: All subjects critiqued by experts in this series are categorized as too much or not enough. Critique for each individual part of the subject is roughly the same no matter the medium. Market value seems to be higher based on pale to medium light aesthetics (does not apply to subjects rendering cultural appropriability and/or labor commodity).

Critique of Piece divided into parts:

This surreal piece has a lot to unpack. The artist’s rendering of the subject is meant to convey its best and exist within its frame, but certain features could have been better portrayed. It’s at best an amateur work and lacks professional detail. One wonders why the artists sought to exist in this realm at all.

Hair: Frizzy. Stray greys as subject is 43. Dye it. Don’t dye it. Oil is good for frizz. Maybe a good conditioner. Also, a hair mask. Maybe just a mask. Wonder what it looks like straight. Get a blowout. Permanently straighten it. Straighten with a flat iron then add selective curls with a curling iron. It looked better curly.

Breasts: Subject is barely an A cup. Flat. Looks like a twelve year old boy with hair. Exposed nefarious pigmented circles (possibly the most vile shape known to mankind who must suppress the circular breast ornament lest it pop off the tit at any moment and latch itself like some unsightly and uncover-girly beauty mark right on a nose) that inspire hate and knee jerks by a select group in society. Did the subject’s breasts begin in this position or are they sagging? I guess not bad for a 43 year-old-subject who had and nursed kids. Hope it used a blanket for the latter if done in public. Disgusting slut. For fuck’s sake, can we get a censor bar here? Actually, no. I think this is allowed. Subject is actually a boy with long hair. No need for a bra unless it wants to slay Goliath. Disclaimer: Everyone critiques this part of a subject, gender and sexual orientation notwithstanding, because misogyny and internalized misogyny. Most everyone. (NOTE: add a NOT ALL clause to the disclaimer). Though, if you want an expert opinion, more in the women identifying squad condemn flat chests (because internalised misogyny is icing on the patriarchal cake). In any case, you can’t body shame skinny bitches. Eat a cheeseburger. Real women have curves. This artist is shit.

Lips: Somewhat crooked from IPV which left jaw line crooked. Weird mouth. May be better if the subject was portrayed smiling. Is it really so hard to paint on a smile?

Eyes: Pretty. Maybe should be cut out before the subject sees its woeful inadequacy in other areas.

Nose: Is it Jewish? Cherokee? What’s the artist trying to convey with that odd bone hump? Is it saying rebellion? Laziness? Probably thinks it’s hot. One of those that doesn’t know it’s actually aesthetically unsatisfactory. Smug. Self-righteous.

Teeth: Is that a fang? Crooked. Overbite. The rebellion against fine grills is coming through strong. Possible vampire. Orthodontists do have payment plans. Fuck your rent. Alas, the subject is blissfully unbothered. You know what they say about ignorance. Surprised no one pointed this glaring error out daily to the artist.

Neck: Smells of blue collar white cherry blossom with undertones of inequality and notes of feminazi. Abrasive. Would be better rendered in baked goods, pine cleaner, cinnamon, and spice.

Arms: Too skinny yet flabby. Scarring from cutting and suicide attempts due to rape and abuse. Needs a tan. Not too much tan. Is that psoriasis? Artist should have rendered after personal trainer application.

Hands: Lined and calloused from hard work. Could the artist not render with lotion or a manicure? Rushed.

Stomach: Unsightly C-section scar due to forced epidural (to make the partner feel better and so they don’t hear you scream), performed by an incompetent doctor who couldn’t be sued. Abdomen has no muscle tone. Flabby. Back fat not visible in this rendering. Weight not to be confused with progress after subject’s over-active thyroid and PTSD left it weighing under 50 kilos. There’s simply no excuse for this with all the mediums available to the artist. Eat a cheeseburger. No, wait, that’s too many cheeseburgers. Don’t render a subject fat or skinny. Paint perfect. Hack artist.

Ass: Given the lack of muscle tone, rest assured, it jiggles. Squats? Step away from the desk and into a gym. Buy those jeans with the built in ass. Stop eating cheeseburgers. Has the artist never heard of a personal trainer?

Pussy: Gross. Nefarious magic muffin. Cursed. Roast beef. Meat curtains. Camel toe. Moose knuckle. I mean, is there anything positive the artist could render here? The smell of it all. Periods are gross. At least the artist rendered at the right time of the month. Yeast factory. The devil’s doorway. The cause of all other major catastrophes not caused by the LGBTQ+ community. That thing responsible for the very downfall of mankind. For fuck’s sake! Where is the black bar? I’ve seen more appealing flaps on a trash can. This artist has forever ruined roast beef. Send nudes.

Legs: Pale. No muscle tone. Too skinny. Needs a tan. Not that much tan. Spider veins. Is that psoriasis? Did no one tell the artist that dermatologists have payment plans?

Feet: Small. Too small. How does the artist’s rendering expect us to believe these feet can hold a body with that much hair upright?

Ears: You’re so hot. You’re an ugly bitch. If you got this done to your body, you’d look perfect. Get a real job. You’re a shitty parent. You’re a shitty person. I don’t like you. I wish I was you. I hate you. I wish I was as skinny as you. Eat a fucking cheeseburger already. Too many cheeseburgers. Loose weight. Gain weight. Use a filter. Ugh, women lie with filters. You’re kind of pretty from this angle. Send nudes. You think you’re better than everyone. Maybe we can be friends. My husband looked at you so we can’t be friends. You’re a slut. You lied about rape. Well, if he hit you, you must have done something to deserve it. I change my mind…this week I’m into blondes. I change my mind…it’s 3 a.m. and I was joking about blondes. You’re a bitch. You’re crazy. You’re old. Can you teach me Cherokee magic? Kabbalah? Stop blaming men and choose better men. Leave him…he’s flying more red flags than Tiananmen Square. Stay with him…you just need to be patient…relationships take work…you’re being too sensitive…it was a joke not verbal abuse. Why would you try to kill yourself? Have you been saved? If they’re crazy, they fuck better. Seriously, let go and let GOD. Your bra doubles as a sling shot for rape prevention. You should be grateful he raped you. You need to get saved. Bad things happen to you because you turned your back on God. Slut. You’re stupid. You’re so emotional. Why can’t you just try to be in a good mood? You’re so much prettier when you smile. Why aren’t you perfect yet?

Conditioned: Yes, of course, but remains defective.

Cost and steps to restore piece to its full aesthetic potential: Face lift, tummy tuck, breast/ass/hip implants, nose alteration. Note: none of these altered recommendations are covered by the artist’s insurance. Teeth, could be covered but subject has a pre-existing condition and is American so no affordable healthcare. Can’t afford insurance or the use of it due to rising rent and living costs coupled with stagnant wages. Has no bootstraps. Lazy. Hair dye, 30 bucks DYI. Subject has a ridiculous amount of hair. Maybe a hair cut to fit the subject’s age.

Summary: Piece is melodramatic. Hypervigilant. Hysterical. Bitchy. Lacks faith and trust. Could benefit from quiet tones. And maybe a smile.

 

 

So You Think I’m Crazy

Lately, I’ve had some wonderful feedback on posts and my writing. Some words used to illustrate my recent wordslinging are: unhinged, crazy, angry, manhating, and others. Well, prepare yourself because I’m about to get crazy.

Let’s discuss crazy. Shall we? October is mental health awareness month, as many of you are aware. I kicked October off with a short story, titled The Stranger and released it to certain followers on October 10th, world mental health awareness day. Not by accident. Many will have their own interpretation as to the meaning of that short story. I dislike interpreting my writing for readers, but, and due largely to feedback on that post, I feel this is a time in which I need to clarify some things. First, this short story is about PTSD from rape. All the clues are there for anyone who missed that and thought it was about something entirely different. That said, if you didn’t catch the meaning of the short, that’s okay. Everyone has their own perceptions based on their unique experiences. Maybe it read as a possession or haunting, and that’s accurate as this is how PTSD works. It’s the haunting of an individual from trauma. I don’t want to go into a lot of detail on The Stranger. That’s not the point of this post.

I wrote excerpts from that short story years ago intending them for a novel I was writing. I ended up killing those proverbial darlings and leaving them to languish in a file where all my darlings wait until such time they find their place in another work. A close friend of mine who suffered from a mental disorder committed suicide not too long ago and so, my darlings found a voice as I struggled with his suicide.

Unknown to many, is my personal struggle with PTSD of late resulting from rapes, sexual assaults, a kidnapping attempt, a false imprisonment, my father’s death, and a separation. Those are just the highlights from the last four years. It’s enough to shake even the most solid among us. Many victims of abuse seek me out for help, and in correspondence from readers, I routinely see mention of my strength. You’re bold. Fearless. Tough. A rock. Badass.

That may be true but even the toughest among us are capable of reaching a breaking point and I finally did. A few times, in fact. I have finally reached a point where I’m exiting the circular path of PTSD hell. That’s what I want to discuss. The crazy.

People call me angry. Crazy. Nuts. Unhinged. Delusional. Insane. I rant. I rage. I go off. I do rant. I do go off. But are these terms an appropriate way to describe my character based on nothing more than a few posts in which I’ve had to publicly call out rape, assault, stalking, abuse, and other violent crimes of which I’ve been a victim?

It’s not, and that narrative, that caricature of victims of abuse, only perpetuates rape culture in our society. When you’ve been a victim and lost all sense of identity, security, trust, and hope, all you have left is your voice. Maybe.

Patriarchy wants submissive, feminine women. It establishes that men are entitled to women, entitled to whatever they desire from women, be it a smile, a conversation, their time, their bodies, their existence. So, naturally, when it comes to dealing with the abuse victim, the patriarchy insists that our anger be submissive and pretty. Cute little tears. Sadness that the patriarchy can hug, cuddle, pat on the head, and, hopefully, fuck the trauma out of.

Am I wrong? No. And I’ve had so many messages from men offering just that. You need sex to deal with rape, that’s the only thing that will get you over the rape, and I, random man, am here to heal your wounds. My dick is what will heal you from trauma. You just need my dick.

I see how some of you men operate. Circling social media like vultures, looking for the posts of the crazy woman. You descend on her, viewing her as roadside carnage where some man, who would never be you because you’re a nice guy and you don’t do that shit to women and oh, you even support feminism and make feminist posts because you’re so fucking woke, as you circle another man’s carnage ready to fuck the wounded creature back to mental stability.

You all make me sick. The only thing worse than you vulture types are the women who say dumb shit like, you’re so angry, why do you curse, why do you behave in all these unfeminine ways? Be a lady. You bitches make me sick too.

After you have lost your security, sense of well-being, hope, identity, your power, your space, your foundation, and so much more to sexual violence and/or abuse, the only thing left that wasn’t taken is your voice.

I don’t like any terms that society has pasted onto victims of patriarchal violence. We’re not survivors. We’re victims, yes, true. We’re not crazy. We’re not sick. I’ll tell you why I hate the bullshit terminology used to paint the people who have been preyed upon by those among us who are narcissistic, entitled, predatory, selfish, and demented. These terms erase the last bit of humanity we, the victims, struggle to hold onto in a dark culture that teaches us all that women are trash. Something to use and discard. Commodities. Products. Toys. Cute little adornments.

You wanna call the victims who are raging back, who are reclaiming their identity, who step up and say, this is fucked up and I won’t tolerate it any longer, crazy? Congratulations. You’re perpetuating rape culture and victim shame and blame right along with the rest of society. You’re part of the problem.

Let us rage. Let us be angry. Let us rant. Silencing this rage merely stuffs victims of inequality and violence into a closet where they’re forced to put on a smile and pretend everything’s okay in order to conform to the patriarchal notion of what women should be, pretty little playthings. And fuck you for that. Silencing victims by calling them crazy only further victimizes and prevents those in need of help from seeking that help.

Who the fuck are you to call me crazy? At what point, do I get to be human? To express all that emotion that men are allowed to express? When do I get to exist and not be discarded again and again by the actions of those in society who need me to smile and entertain and be pretty.

Fuck your pretty. Right now, I’m reclaiming all that was taken from me and no one gets to dictate my color palette while I paint myself a new life. If those colors are dark and highlighted with Fucks and Fuck Yous then so fucking be it.

Fuck how society dictates everything a woman must be and then dictates how we do or don’t express our emotions after suffering from trauma. We’re not crazy. We suffer from PTSD and many of us are tough as fuck and we know what it’s like to be haunted by the Stranger and we have fought for every single second of wretched life since that traumatic event and likely will for the remainder of our lives. And it’s not pretty. And we don’t have to make it so in order for society to swallow  the horrible violence we endured. You joke about and long for a woman who can throat your fucking dicks but then want to be a pussy when it comes to deep throating all the ways society has fucked us over and reduced us to your cute little toy. Learn how to take the dick of patriarchy you so love to stroke. I’m not here to coddle and nurture your fragile fucking egos, your bullshit patriarchal superiority, or your need for dominance. You’re gonna swallow this fucking dick and you don’t get to look the other way and spit out my seed of truth. Am I getting this across to you in a language you fucks comprehend?

If you can’t understand that rage and that need to reclaim yourself, that very real fight with the Stranger (PTSD) who seeks only to end you, then your perception comes from a place of privilege or predatory behavior or an assimilation into patriarchal culture. I don’t give a fuck where it comes from to be honest.

We’re not crazy. We’re angry. We’re grieving. We’re healing. And none of that is pretty. It’s raw, it’s bloody, and it’s cruel. I won’t shut up. I won’t coat trauma in lipstick and dress it in a cute little nighty to make you feel okay about violent crimes. Go fuck yourself. Healing isn’t cute. It’s hard work.

Many abuse victims no longer see themselves as human. That rage, that monster that comes out, all these negative terms which are applied to victims of violence (and racism), these terms are meant to assuage your privilege and reaffirm your dominance in the patriarchal society (yes, I’m talking to men, and yes, ALL FUCKING MEN).

Stop. If you’re not actively dismantling the patriarchy then you are benefitting from it and perpetuating its harmful tenets. It’s telling how we talk about victims. That language, the crazy narrative. Victims aren’t crazy. It’s those who are the predators and those among us shielding the predators and defending this bullshit who are crazy.

I’ll rant when the fuck I feel like it and if you want to call me crazy, fine. Truth is, you’re just not ready to deal with the badass bitch who simply refuses to be discarded and keeps coming back to haunt you with the ugly picture of patriarchy and trauma so many of you want to ignore. I’ll wail like a fucking banshee. I’ll keep the ugly, crazy face on your pretty little survivor label because that’s the victim’s journey you jumped over to look the other way to pretend this isn’t a fucking plague for women all around the world.

Here’s to all you crazy bitches. Rant louder ladies. The world still hasn’t heard us and until they do, RANT FUCKING LOUDER and let that crazy fly.

This is an ugly post and the writing is ugly. This is the window to my soul, my voice, and if you don’t like it, then you’re in the wrong genre. I don’t have to adhere to the way patriarchal society has painted me and I’m stripping that canvas and repainting with all the dark, ugly colors of truth you want to protect yourself from in your delusion that women and victims be pretty and nice and sweet. I’m a human being. Not trash. Not a plaything. Not some bitch here to entertain you. I’m not a pretty face and PTSD isn’t pretty. It’s terrifying and dark and unscripted and unedited. You love victims when we’re the proverbial rock and the badass but you want to look the other way when it comes to dealing with how those among us labeled thusly got to that place where you could lavish us with such bullshit terminology.

We’re humans and we experienced the ugliness of trauma and we’re trying to heal and to reclaim the person we were before the predator and the stranger latched on. So stop calling victims who wield the truth, crazy. Stop trying to redress our PTSD in these ridiculous warrior women, barely there, skimpy, pornographic costumes for your gratification so you don’t have to face the global war on women. We’re here in the full battle regalia men are allowed, complete with inconsistent and turbulent emotions, and we’re not going to be silenced. You may take our bodies and our liberties but you don’t get our voices. You don’t get to mandate our healing journey.

So, lets talk about crazy. Really. Let’s get right in that wound, and rip it open and dump in the salt of all your stigmatizing labels. You don’t get to bury your heads and look the other way. We’re done being pretty.

Fuck your survivor label. I’m a woman. And being a woman has never been fucking pretty.

 

I Would Never Fuck You

“Write something,” he said in the thirty-fourth of thirty-eight messages sent at 5:14 a.m. on a Tuesday morning. “Anything. Share it. If you want to be a writer, this is what you do. Write.”

The only problem I had with the advice is that I am a writer. A published author, in fact. His words utterly dismissed my hard work and the accomplishment that comes from having published.

I knew this writer from my critique group days. We worked in two groups between 2012 and 2014 during which time, I sent a critique to the man admonishing what I felt was a misogynistic writing style. I cautioned that he risked alienating a large fan base with such a voice. Upon further reflection, I apologized for what I felt might be censorship. He accepted my apology and I put the incident out of my mind.

We stayed connected through social media randomly messaging one another for feedback and encouragement on various writing projects.

I managed to publish my first novel in 2015 and then completed my second novel. After several traumatic life changes, I decided to take some time off from writing to focus on myself. I heard from him a few times during my writing sabbatical. Once, he called offering to help me move, suggesting we go out for drinks afterward. Having already moved, I declined the offer. No big deal.

Our contact remained sporadic but friendly until recently when he called my cell at three a.m. to ask if I was in town. My SO asked who was calling so late, and hearing him, my friend responded, “He’s asking the wrong question. He should be asking why I’m calling.”

The conversation continued as awkwardly as it began, consisting of incoherent ramblings with disjointed references to that critique I had sent some three to four years prior with an odd fixation on my sexual relationship with my ex and my sex drive level. Uncomfortable with the discourse, I informed my friend that my SO and I were retiring for the evening and suggested we resume the conversation later in the day. When I woke, I discovered the following message to which I tried to offer a polite response. He messaged again, but I decided not to respond.

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My silence prompted a barrage of early morning messages, thirty-eight of them, to be exact.

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And so, after a year-long hiatus in writing, I felt compelled to sit down and pen this carefully thought out response:

Dude,

LOL. What the actual fuck? I’ll pass on the critique as, after all these years, your writing is still nothing more than misogynistic drivel. That whole rejected male/fragile ego plot is played out and oh, so cliché, though it lends itself well to your tired, redundant adjectives and poorly written insults. Feminazi? Really? Yawn.

I’d love to write more but must get back to social justice warrioring, but I’ll leave you with the words you requested:

I would never fuck you.

And that’s really what this is all about. Right?

Happy writing,

K. S. Bowers