Who is your brother?

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Who are your brothers and sisters? To a Christian or a member of another religion, often the fellow members of their religion are considered their brothers and sisters. Politics and other issues can also cause people to see one group as their family and one group as not; the battle between Republicans and Democrats is a very good example. But religion seems to be the biggest one.

Although it might make you feel warm and fuzzy inside, it divides the human race instead of bringing it together.

As an atheist, I see ALL humans as my brothers and sisters, even religious people.

Of course not all atheists think this way, and there are Christians and people from other religions that do see all humans as their metaphorical siblings. This is just an observation of what I have seen in my own circles. Because I grew up as a believer and was one for 24 years, I used to have hundreds of Christian people on my Facebook. Many of them would post about helping their Christian “brothers and sisters” and speak against abortionists, atheists, “false” Christians, liberals, democrats, etc. When they did post about other people in need, such as helping young girls in India who were rescued from sex trafficking, it was almost always with a catch: they were witnessing to those needy people so they would become “part of the family”. They couldn’t just help them with no other agenda- it had to be with the purpose of winning them over to their beliefs.

I saw how divisive this idea can be, and I felt the sting when I started to become public about my “non-conforming” ideas that many of my Christian friends did not like as my beliefs grew further from traditional church teachings. I wasn’t family anymore- and so they stopped treating me as family.

I think that any belief that divides the human race is harmful. When you see one group as your family and another as outsiders, or even perhaps enemies, then only hurt can come of it. I hope that you can see everyone as your family, even those that you don’t agree with.

-Lilly

Gay Marriage: More Than Just Wanting to Wear the Ring

Gay Marriage: More Than Just Wanting to Wear the Ring

Pinner on Pinterest said this:
“This is why I’m constantly fighting against those who want to use religion and the Bible to deny gay marriage. It isn’t “church recognition” or even “moral recognition” that we are seeking- it’s just the same fair and equal access to basic human rights that heterosexual couples have from “marriage” that are denied to gay couples.”

8 Things Not To Say To Someone After Abortion…

Abortions are hard. Really hard. They’re not something that women do “just for fun”. Sometimes it’s hard to know how to react to someone after they have had an abortion. This article provides some excellent advice on how to be supportive of your friend or family member post abortion- and what not to say. I’ve copied the article here, the original source is in the link at the bottom. I hope you find it helpful.

-Lilly

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This is the list I wish I had ten years ago. After I had an abortion, nobody knew what to say to me. Not even Larry, my therapist. Poor Larry. Looking back, I would not have known what to say to me, either. One in three women will have an abortion in her lifetime. Men, too, deserve to be heard. Yet we are not taught how to talk to people who have experienced abortion.

The first thing to know is that everyone experiences abortion differently. Many of my friends never looked back. Having an abortion just wasn’t a big deal for them. But I had a lot of feelings, you guys. Relief. Regret. Confusion. Doubt. Apathy. Curiosity. Confidence. Overconfidence. Contentment.

It takes a courageous, patient, and empathetic friend to listen to someone share about her or his experience with abortion. As researcher Dr. Brené Brown explains, “Empathy is feeling with people.” Thank you for coming over here and feeling with us.

1. But weren’t you unstable before the abortion?

We’re smart people. We are fully aware of the lives we’ve led. If our state of mind beforehand seems relevant, then we will discuss it in our own time. We came to you because we would like to talk about how we feel right now.

What to say: I’m glad you came to talk to me about this.

2. That was years ago, dollface. Isn’t it time to move on?

We know exactly how much time has elapsed. If we could have moved on already, we would have. Some people see their abortion as the loss of their identity, or their child, or their chance. While it is important to make no assumptions about why someone is having feelings around their abortion, you can tell us you know how normal we are for feeling the way we do. We are completely acceptable as-is.

What to say: I know this happened years ago, and it’s okay if you’re still really, really sad.

3. All this sadness makes you sound like you’re against abortion.

Our emotions may have nothing to do with our opinion about abortion. I know women who have marched on Washington for their right to choose while privately regretting their own decisions. I know women who believe very deeply that abortion is wrong while feeling that abortion was the right decision for them. Our personal stories do not always reflect our political beliefs. When we come to you, please do not match our emotions to a political narrative.

What to say: There’s no right or wrong way to feel.

4. You weren’t ready for a baby.

This tells us that we are inferior, irresponsible, and immature, which is simply not true. We made the most mature, responsible decisions we could at the time. Some of us feel proud of the independence we gained from all the footwork this decision required. If we tell you we didn’t have access to the resources we needed, feel with us. Remember a time when you didn’t have what you needed. Acknowledge that we are worthy of having everything we need. All of us.

What to say: Sounds like you know what’s best for you.

5. Well, I support your right to choose.

This one sounds like support, but it ends the conversation. It may be a positive assessment, but it’s a judgment nonetheless. What we need is space to connect with you. If we would like to know your political views, please trust us to ask you. If we don’t ask, then perhaps we don’t need to know.

What to say: Take your time — I’m listening.

6. I don’t support what you did, but I’m here to support you.

It can be difficult to feel unconditionally loved and supported by someone who condemns what you did. You don’t have to support what we did, but when you are supporting us, please leave your opinions and expectations at the door. Then come in, listen to what we are saying, and try to put yourself in our shoes.

What to say: I’m here to support you.

7. No — it was actually a baby/child/fetus/embryo/zygote/clump of cells.

Many of us have done the research. We know the terminology. Sometimes it takes nerve to use the word we like best. Please don’t correct us. Instead, use our terminology when you talk to us.

What to say: You’re allowed to call it a fetus or a baby — it was yours and you can call it whatever you want.

8. But are you really happy now?

Some of us really are very happy right after the procedure for reasons so vast and diverse that I could write about them for pages. Even if we’re not happy right afterward, many of us become happy in our own time. If we tell you that we’re happy, we may have done a lot of work to reach this extraordinary place. Please celebrate with us. Do a little dance. Hip-bump. Yay.

What to say: I’m glad you feel relieved and rejuvenated.

If you have experienced abortion, what would you add to this list? What would you change?

source: https://exhaleprovoice.org/blog-post/8-things-not-say-someone-after-abortion?utm_content=buffer96e49&utm_source=buffer&utm_medium=facebook&utm_campaign=Buffer

Forced Motherhood…

Forced motherhood is female enslavement.

Fetuses are not babies.
Abortion is not murder.
Women are not incubators.

Abortion on demand and without apology!

(source: http://www.stoppatriarchy.org/)

I was raised to believe that abortion was wrong, no exceptions. I never bothered to look at the other side and investigate these claims until recently. I now think that an abortion should be a personal, private decision made by the mother, and I don’t think abortion is murder. I can’t pretend to be in her shoes, I don’t have the right to decide her life for her. I’m not trying to make you think that abortions are right or wrong- that’s something you’ll need to decide for yourself. But I do think that everyone should have that right- the right to make this decision for themselves and not be restricted based on someone else’s personal views.

Some people say that “a baby isn’t a punishment, it’s a blessing!” No, that’s not always true. Some women don’t want to have a baby, can’t safely have a baby due to medical problems, or don’t want to carry their rapist’s baby because in most states rapists can sue for visitation rights or even custody. And some women might normally want the baby, but they will lose their jobs if they take maternity leave and will probably have to go on Welfare. Then she will be judged for being a “leech on the system”. The USA is not a good place for most mothers.

It’s also ironic that many of the same people who oppose abortions also oppose proper sex education and birth control- the two things that have been proven to drastically reduce abortions. This drives me up the wall!!

I have absolutely no doubt that if men could become pregnant, there would be an abortion clinic on every street corner.

7 Tips for Keeping Your Man (from the 1950s)

7 Tips for Keeping Your Man (from the 1950s)

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http://mentalfloss.com/article/52108/7-tips-keeping-your-man-1950s

Wondering why feminism is still necessary? Because I can read the above article and still identify ideas I was raised with and still hear today. I still see women, including myself, fighting this image of female perfection that is basically slavery.

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It’s better than it was- but it’s not there yet. And in many other countries women STILL live with these rules and MORE. In some places, living like this would be easy compared to their current cultural expectations.

What are your thoughts? Share in the comments below!

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My personal thoughts on this whole thing… 😉

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Now I want to clarify something: There’s a huge difference between being a woman like that article describes, subservient to men not having her own views or rights etc, and being a stay at home mom who cooks and cleans as a part of her CHOSEN role. I have the greatest respect for those women, and if I had kids I’d probably stay at home with them too until they were older. The point is that women should not be considered less than men, their needs should be equally important, they shouldn’t be told to “sit down and shut up”, and whether a woman cooks and cleans or has kids or not should be HER CHOICE- not a life decided for her or a set of rules that is synonymous with feminine perfection. Feminism is about women being able to decide their own path for themselves and not being judged for it.