I have a great intellectual capacity. And am capable of checking my feelings as well. It’s been a long process to get connected again, after so many years of cultural learning to disconnect.
After the meeting yesterday with (a part of) the (small and protective inward turned elite clique of the) social centre scene, I cried. Once again, my comrade and friend Pähkinä was there for me. We’re still developing our relation into something more equal, and not only her being there for me through trauma and struggle, but that for us both there is not border between the “activist” and the human being. Life and activism is the same. And the equality we’re struggling for should be there in all interaction. All the time.
I cried and talked, and wanted to disconnect. I drank. We met with (r).
Still over at (r’s) place. All three of us here. Got some sleep. My head still being fuzzy from all the boozing.
I realized, that the meeting that seemed futile, and frustrating for me, knowing how fruitful it could have been (all the information that would have been possible to get out of it. The improvements that could have been made clear right then and there. Not possible because of the usual, “who’s the boss” games, slowing down a concrete and clear constructive process/meeting structure. In the name of democracy I gave up facilitation to someone with less experience. I really urged them to consider that I would be able to get something really good happening with my skills. At the meeting I still continued giving some basic pointers. And was also behaving incorrectly going blaah blaah in my frustration with this whole thing. Which people were really quick about telling me, but the fact that the meeting was fairly dominated by especially one male character went unnoticed – even though i tried to point it out.)
Anyways. The urge to write. And to create another category, came now. The meeting that seemed futile, was actually liberating. I’m free. Seeing Adam, being in the same space. Getting the pieces falling into place.
The trauma from the inability to connect that was general in the meeting. Was something that I had been particularly affected by in my relation to her in this conflict. Her inability to see the conflict between her and I as political. Our inability to connect. For a year and a half. Intensive correspondence. My own denial and confusion about the love I felt for her.
So far. Three categories. Comrades, friends, lovers. And I was thinking about the physical part. Of one comrade soon coming here. And the possibility of getting physical comfort. Closeness. I feel I trust her enough, through the work we’ve done on communication so far. So I would trust to have her close. Step out of my own insanity. My twisted body image. Insecurities. Lookism. Just be there. And be close. I find it in me that I’m ready for that now. And that I trust enough. Know myself enough to trust.
Adam and I. I don’t understand how she can deny it. Or how she understands human relations and the world. I understand she has the usual male unempathic egotistic patterns. This was particularly damaging for me in our relation. I got into the usual (female) gender pattern of trying to figure out and guess her needs. I must have given a totally schizofrenic impression. Kind, patient, teaching. And bursting out, in my inner rebellion against a love that was not equal. The fear I felt for feeling this love. And this all over international mailing lists… “Authoritarian, dominant, sexist”. “Is it heteronormative patterns making me feel this way?”
I will not speak for her feelings. But I will include her in the factual statement: We were lovers. Trying to be friends. Comrades. But the intensity in our disconnected mailings. The frustration that was so clear for us both. The “but in spite of it all just being conflict, let’s try to be friends? Are you my friend? I am your friend.”
There was passion there. And that we never talked about it. Everything being painful and going straight to hell, because of the simple small thing, that we didn’t recognize our selves as emotional beings. And that we didn’t talk about feelings.
Early on in our relation. During our traveling. Sleeping in the same bed. Sharing the same blanket. Skin to skin. We never talked about it. I think that’s where the total inner confusion started for me. I should have talked with her. But in a world where feelings are not recognized as possessed by ourselves, but seen as something connected to whatever our attention (seeing listening caring for) is drawn to. And the way this attention is unequally given and shared and taken (by the privileged – taken for granted). There is hurt and pain and potential power abuse talking about this beautiful thing.
Once we understand that our love can not be taken. Well then there’s nothing to loose.
Adam how is it possible to deny it? The wanting to continue our relation because of me (in spite of being labeled as manipulative, “evil” feminist) being someone that “has a lot to give to society, the world, life, me“. The passion that was there. The bitter, sarcasm she chose to quote from me. On the social centre list. Where I was calling myself a “crazy, whore to be laughed at”. Because of being told on the same mailing list before that I “should learn when to shut up, in order to get laid”. And labeled “mentally ill” both before and after I got kicked off the same mailing list, where I had tried to speak about power relations and sexism. A sexism that Adam could sometimes see. But mostly not. And especially not in our close, intimate relation. Not in her relation to me. Not in relation to her own sweet “love child”. The social centre dream. Her dream. (Shared by many, but because of this ownership, there are a sad few participating in it.)
She chose to quote this, in order to show that I “can’t be trusted”. And that I should be banned from a community where she is in. This mail was passed on to me by a woman. A mail concerning me – not an object, but me, a human being – was supposed to be a secret. But was passed on to me by a woman, thinking it would be the sensible thing to do. Open confrontation. Not talking behind someones back. And then the witch hunt was on again. She “had broken the rules”. She should be kicked off the list. Said this pseudocommunity. But she ended up apologizing for her “mistake”. And she was forgiven by Adam, one of the white (semi)hetero male leader figures within the scene. So she was “allowed” to stay on.
I wish Adam would have quoted some of the endless beautiful poetic passionate writings (unfortunately in Swedish) about movement building. About community. About love. There was a lot of that coming her way, in our private exchange. The political side of me she’s working against having in the pseudocommunity, because our personal relation didn’t work out. So she wants me as far away as possible. Even though she claims to be concerned about the social centre project. Now that our personal relation is not working out, she cannot see herself sharing her dream with me. Her words are so contradictory (in the media talking about a “space open for all, to create and realize themselves” and at the meeting clearly stating that “the social centre project isn’t open for everybody”). And there’s been so much paranoia in me, because this complete confusion, from both her and me. the mixed messages we’ve been giving each other. in public and in private. The complete confusion about what I want. Movement, Community. Her.
I wanted her. But the beauty in my political reality is that one thing wouldn’t exclude the other.
In hers it does. I’m happy to take the step out from my internal confusion. We tried to be friends. Comrades. But all this time we were lovers.
I say “we”, because I see no other reason for her to express her inability to understand me, to accept my understanding of sexist structures, that were there so clearly in her writing, to want to be friends, and after my outbursts, showing her frustration in not knowing what to do, since she couldn’t recognize the sexism (always). She was open about it. Stating that she just couldn’t see it. And that maybe in “six months, a year, ten years from now!” (cause learning takes time). But meanwhile she could only desperately ask for what she could do, “throw herself on her knees?” absolute “willingness to discuss these things over repeatedly” (and at the same time making efforts to avoid the subject of sexism and what it is over and over again…!)
Oh, yeah. Passion for sure. And that’s what I liked about her. Her drive.
We were lovers. With a sad sad inability to talk about feelings. With a tragic (or comic) inability to own our feelings, and just share. That’s all that would have been needed. Instead of name calling – we could have just: shared.
Damn. I will definitely get into nonviolent communication. My next step. Learning more about communication, in order to not experience all my human relations as so painful because of the oppressive structures that we all display, reproduce, and act out every single day.
I thought the meeting yesterday gave me nothing. But, it turned out, to be a great step in my own personal development.
I’m an intellectual, ready to get over my own insecurities and twisted body image, and lookism. I’m an intellectual ready to get physical.
I’m really grateful that Adam was there. I didn’t get to open up the issue of sexism, or confront her on her sexism. But just by her presense, I managed to get closeure for our personal relation.
The personal conflict is over on my part. She said at the meeting she’s not interested in having any kind of process with me. The end of the personal process I can accept. I can move on. The political still goes on. And there’s no way in hell I’m giving this one up. I refuse to go along in the “hey, look at us, we’re equal – but let’s make up a million different reasons for not hearing this woman out on sexism…”
It’s time for this community to wake up to reality.
just a funny thought from the meeting i cried so much about yesterday. that (knowing something different is possible) it’s so funny observing these patriarchal scenes refusing to talk emotions and share and therefore need some outer enemy to create a sense of unity around. Usually the police. Or state. In the helsinki squatting scene it’s “milla”. i am the glue keeping the scene together. i am the common enemy.
a truly progressive force (me, myself, and i) got a 2 year ban yesterday. (let’s deal with the issue of sexism and exclusion of a feminist activist in 2 years… Do the people making this decision really think this would be a possibility?!)
so – seems that this blog just turned into long term reality show entertainment.