Why are we naked? (The Aquatic Ape Hypothesis)

by Milla — she=he

Raymond Dart - A White Male - came up with a hypothesis for human evolution in 1924, that stayed with us for a long time. According to Dart our ancestors got out of the forest and onto the open plains, where we got bipedal. We were standing on two legs peering over the grass into the distance - looking for danger or prey, running and hunting on two legs, with our hands free for weapons and tools. This hypothesis has now been scrapped since most recent research indicates that our ancestors got on two feet in forested habitat. The hypothesis presented to me in school, is nowadays thought to be not such a great idea after all.

Today’s Song: Water – Eggstone

In 1930 another white male – Alister Hardy – came up with another hypothesis sprung from the thought that the fat layer beneath the human skin reminded of the blubber of sea mammals. Hardy thought that humans might have had a semi-aquatic phase in our evolution, causing us to lose our fur. Wading around in water on two legs is not as straining on the knees and back as on land, and a great motivator to stay on two feet would be that it’s necessary to keep breathing. These thoughts developed into what’s now known as The Aquatic Ape Hypothesis.

Alister Hardy thought that this might be the reason for why we got in to the habit of walking on two feet.

This was a man with ambitions, knowing that it would not be wise to present these ideas within a scientific community with a heart and mind set on Dart’s open plains idea, commonly known as the Savannah Hypothesis. So Hardy kept the Aquatic Ape Hypothesis silent for decades, and first published the theory in an article, after already having achieved knighthood and a position within the scientific ‘scene’.

“My thesis is that a branch of this primitive ape-stock was forced by competition from life in the trees to feed on the sea-shores and to hunt for food, shell fish, sea-urchins etc., in the shallow waters off the coast. I suppose that they were forced into the water just as we have seen happen in so many other groups of terrestrial animals. I am imagining this happening in the warmer parts of the world, in the tropical seas where Man could stand being in the water for relatively long periods, that is, several hours at a stretch.”Alister Hardy (‘The New Scientist’, March 17, 1960)

For an overview of the Savannah and Aquatic ideas: History Planet – Aquatic Ape Theory

What interests me in this story, is how this thesis was received: Silence. Dismissal. Ridicule.

In schools we kept on hearing that ‘man started walking on the Savannah’ and not even a side-note mentioning other possibilities. What interests me in this story is the interplay between the dominant discourse and what from a mainstream position is labeled as the ‘fringe’. Some stories are viewed as coming from a ‘margin’, and many of these stories are not allowed space within the stories given attention, and validity within the majority/mainstream. This story speaks to me since it is something that I experience as a repeated part, an essential occurrence, in my everyday life.

Every cloud has a silver lining –
Every crowd has a lunatic fringe.

Elaine Morgan – white female – picked up on the Aquatic Ape idea in the 1970’s and wrote a book (The Descent of Woman) criticizing the male centered Savannah hypothesis with men hunting and running, supposedly losing hair because of sweating profusely in the chase, with them as the center of evolution [see the image provided in the beginning of this post] while females – having a use for fur for offspring to cling onto while escaping danger – not being regarded as a relevant driving force for evolutionary change in the human species.

She has with the consent of Hardy taken on the huge task of taking The Aquatic Ape hypothesis from the lunatic fringe of the scientific community, and make its way from silence and scorn to take a place in the attention besotted and credibility adorned mainstream discourse. Four decades and 6 books later you can hear what she has to say on the matter in a 17 minute long speech at TED:

Elaine Morgan says we evolved from aquatic apes

BBC made a documentary in 1998 on the Aquatic Ape, where we can see Elaine Morgan, Alister Hardy, Raymond Dart and Philip Tobias – a former student of Dart, and now a strong proponent of the Aquatic Ape Hypothesis:

For more information on Elaine Morgan’s books and discussion on the aquatic ape:

Elaine Morgan’s Website

On her site you can download her latest book: The Naked Darwinist. For free.


What is — Ode to heteronormativity

by Milla — she=he

"Like a bird on a wire. Like a drunk in a midnight choir. I have tried in my way to be free." -- Leonard Cohen

from the spam part of my brain: Bird on the wire – The Neville Brothers

thinking of daniel. thinking of sexism. sad.

Like some birds. I can't love in a trapped existence. I end up depressed.

Shortly after hatching, both chickens and turkeys have the ends of their beaks cut off, and turkeys also have the ends of their toes clipped off. These mutilations are performed without anesthesia, ostensibly to reduce injuries that result when stressed birds are driven to fighting.

Jay Blanco #3 .. Logic & imagination

by Milla — she=he

“What you feed will grow”: Narcissists, Trolls, Females, Therapists .. Labeling, Stereotype stories, Role-play and .. Imagination

"Imagination is more important than knowledge", said Albert Einstein, who also said: "Logic will get you from A to B. Imagination will take you everywhere."

I took Jay’s response and chose this space to express what i got out of it. In green what I understand of the actual words. And in brown the questions, thoughts, and feelings that arise in me, when reading:

jay: “Done research and clearly this is the pattern for you. And I played it out with you. Several people also contacted me and confirmed this–from their own personal experience and/or that of friends of theirs. It still did not help the way I felt.”

jay has asked some persons of their opinion? googled my name? and noticed some behavior/action that i’ve repeated? jay considers to have participated in the behavior repeated? a number of persons that jay would define as ‘several’ (which i estimate to be more than 2 less than 10?) have contacted jay and said that i have repeated a behavior/action either with them or with their friends? this interaction and exchange with other people, does not affect what jay felt?

i’m wondering if my opinion would be valid in the research conducted by jay? or if any opinions from sources recommended by me would be welcome? i’m also wondering what “this” is a reference to, as well as what this “it” is that jay considers to have “played out” with me? i am wondering how many people are ‘several’ and what it is they have confirmed? i am wondering what feelings jay are talking about, in relation to what?

jay: “What you’ve done is unconscionable. Worst part is you don’t/can’t care. (My guess is you’ll privately and publicly register this as projection, perhaps some sort of power play.)”

i’ve done something that jay experiences some strong negative feelings in relation to? and the thought of me not caring increases the intensity of these feelings? jay guesses that i will say that this is projection, and maybe some power play on jay’s part to express this?

i’m wondering what behavior/action jay is referring to? and i’m wondering what behavior/action that jay interprets as not caring, and i also wonder what action/behavior would be received as caring by jay?

to respond to the guess: i don’t know what would be projection and what would be power play — if i understood what jay was talking about then i would be able to say if i agreed with this guess or not. now i’m just confused, and wondering if jay really thinks i should/would/could understand what it is that jay is talking about, when this “this” and “it” and “pattern” is not described any further? i’m wondering if jay thinks this is efficient and clear communication?

jay: “In our exchanges, I experienced from you traits of narcissism, sociopathy, BPD, and various psychotic disorders. Female friends, as well as my own female therapist, have read all the correspondence and other blog entries of yours and used the same words and more. (My guess is you’ll register this as my having brainwashed them and/or that they are all feminist patriarchs.) Regardless, I don’t–I can’t take–such things lightly.”

when jay has been interacting with me online, there has been text and actions, received in a negative way by jay, and jay has interpreted the text and actions as a display of various psychotic disorders? jay has shared the correspondence between jay and i with jay’s therapist who is female – and with some of jay’s friends who are female – and they have also read some blog posts that i’ve written and have described my writing with words categorizing various psychotic disorders? jay is guessing that i think that jay has brainwashed/influenced them and/or that they interpret my self-expression and concerns in favor of a patriarchal order? no matter what i might think, jay can not take behavior that can be interpreted by jay and other (only female?) persons as various psychotic disorders with ease?

what is the thing/action/behavior that jay is reacting on? what is the thing/action/behavior causing discomfort in jay? how come jay describes/interprets the behavior/action with words categorizing mental ‘disorders’? why is jay pointing out that the therapist is female? and that the friends are female? what does jay mean by “such things” in the sentence that reads: “Regardless, I don’t–I can’t take–such things lightly.”?

to respond to jay’s guess of my thinking about jay and jay’s friends and therapist: i do not know what jay’s friends or therapist are like, or what it is they interpret as psychotic disorders in my writing. i do not believe that jay has brainwashed them. i do believe that the action of labeling the actions of someone trying to address sexism, as them having ‘psychotic disorders’ is a fairly common and very effective way of deflecting attention from — and often in effect silence — the concerns of this person and that this serves the patriarchal order. i don’t know if this is done intentionally or not by jay and jay’s friends so i wouldn’t say that i can say anything about ‘brainwash’ or ‘feminist patriarchs’.

jay: “For my own safety (and that of some friends of mine), I will be blocking you from my page.”

jay fears for the safety of jay and some of jay’s friends, and has decided to block me from jay’s facebook page as a means to protect jay and some of jay’s friends?

what is it that jay imagines could happen? what is the worst case scenario? what is jay and jay’s friends safe from by blocking me from jay’s facebook page? could jay imagine other ways of creating safety?

jay: “I am indeed sorry for your sadness and for my initially defensive response. Whatever I believe you did or didn’t to to me doesn’t take away whatever my part was–for that, I apologize. (My guess is this will mean nothing to you, as all you will register is rejection, condescension and contempt.)”

jay empathizes with the sadness i’ve experienced in relation to jay’s behavior, and says that jay started off by responding to my writing in a defensive manner? jay is not sure of what has happened in our interaction, but recognizes that jay participated in the interaction, and would like to take responsibility for some of the communication not working well? jay is guessing that jay saying this, will have no meaning to me, and that i will read jay’s statement as rejection, condescension and contempt?

my response to jay’s guess: it is a challenge reading this whole statement by jay. i usually feel really uncomfortable when people speak of negative feelings but are not specifying behavior (with specifying i mean saying what specific action triggered the feeling/need) and as a feminist (and woman) i fairly often get to hear “crazy” in a silencing manner, by people who are not interested in discussing the sexism (or any other -‘isms’) i’m trying to address — so i do feel disheartened, as well as a bit amused when i in jay’s response read a variety of “psychiatric disorders” and as well the confirmation given by therapist and friends (!) and when i read this i somehow doubt that there will ever be a willingness on jay’s behalf (or jay’s therapist’s and friends’ behalf) to discuss the sexist implications these statements have, and i have strong doubts of receiving any further specification of what behavior of mine fits into these various categories and why it’s important to label the behavior in this way. i hear the “crazy card” being pulled and laid on the table as a big “NO” to the sexism discussion – according to my understanding of how this game is played, the voices and ‘crazy-making’ by many ‘females’ can block out the concerns of ‘only’ one ‘female’. If I say ‘sexism’ and the others say ‘mentally ill’ (or ‘incomprehensible/difficult/erratic/non-normative behavior’) then it’s decided by a majority that it just ain’t the ‘proper’ or ‘right’ time — ‘right’ place — ‘right’ people for having that discussion on sexism. That’s usually how it goes in the stereotype stories we’re assigned role-playing parts in.

in a sense i agree with jay’s guess of my experiencing the response as ‘rejection’. jay saying that there’s recognition for the sadness i experience in relation to defensive response is not enough for me to think that “wow, now i really feel we are connecting here, i know jay can, or wants to ‘get’ what i’m going through”. i don’t know if i would agree with hearing the statements as ‘condescending’ and ‘contempt’ because i’m convinced that jay really speaks out of something that is very real to jay. [the idea that someone would express fear and say that they experience someone else’s behaviors as psychotic disorders for any other reason than that this is ‘real’ to them, is as strange to me as if i would say that i experience sexism in the conversation for any other reason than that this is ‘real’ to me] so i believe that jay really experiences reading my writing as the thoughts and feelings of a person with mental disorders, and that the fear and anxiety that jay experiences in relation to that is real and visceral and that jay really feels a strong need to protect jay and jay’s friends from my presence.

what i can agree to, is that i’m reading these words from jay as a ‘rejection’ of my perspective and actions as valid and ‘sane’ from jay’s point of view. condescension and contempt i would only experience from the text if i believed jay would see my view as valid/sane, but in spite of this, choose to ignore dialogue.

something (unspecified) was said, something (unspecified) was done — jay reacts with strong feelings on this something — and all of a sudden i’m said to have ‘disorders’ and any discussion on what happened is out the window and out from the social networking site called facebook.

i believe that jay is living with some strong images having a powerful impact on how jay experiences our interaction. i believe that jay is doing what jay at this moment sees as the reasonable thing to do, according to jay’s understanding of reality, and in relation to what jay imagines would happen if we talked this through.

jay: “You did indeed remind me that ‘what you feed will grow’. Again, thanks for that.
I genuinely wish you only the best–safety, stability, enlightenment, peace, love, all that good stuff–but I wish it away from me.
Please send me no more correspondence.”

jay genuinely wishes me the best — safety, stability, enlightenment, peace, love and more — and can not at the moment see any common strategies for us to coexist in way that would make this real for both of us? jay doesn’t want to talk about this any further?

this is where i am a naive believer: i think if someone believes these things are possible (safety, enlightenment, peace, love and more) then it should be very possible to sit back, and relax, and think how this would be possible to make happen in a talk with one another. what concrete actions would create this kind of atmosphere?

saying: “i and a lot of others experience you and your behavior/thoughts/feelings as ‘disordered’ so i won’t talk of the concerns you have in relation to my behavior towards you, with you — i wish you the best, away from any space i inhabit” is not enough. saying no to a talk based on what i’ve heard so far, (“protecting oneself from insanity”) i take as an expression of lack of imagination.

Labeling a person as 'troll' and 'flaming' is an effective way of silencing discussion and preventing growth in our online communities. I therefor have an "all opinions allowed" policy on this blog. Anybody can post a comment.

Conversation with Jay Blanco #2

by Milla — she=he

On the icy sea, on the coast of Helsinki, walks a strange creature. She knows not how to read minds and learns of the world and herself in interaction with others. Her behavior has been interpreted as "narcissism, sociopathy, BPD, and various psychotic disorders". These categories are seemingly agreed upon by many: "Female friends, as well as my own female therapist, have read all the correspondence and other blog entries of yours and used the same words and more."

I posted some thoughts on my facebook profile. Jay Blanco responded with a comment. I asked for clarification of the feelings/thought process/intent with this response. Here’s some of the communication. Once again. No further explanation on my side, cause I’m tired and wish for ease. This is What Is. The world we’re inhabiting today.

— From my facebook wall — — —

— From private messages on facebook — — —


Apart from looking and acting crazy. She's also been called: Free. In the picture: Milla Ahola on an ice walk in Helsinki, January 2010.

How is it done? (nvc and conflict)

by Milla — she=he

My guesses are: Pondering or Bored. Maybe both. Maybe Impatient. Maybe Something Else. What's your guess?

Online madness. I guess I’m learning something somewhere. I’m just not sure exactly what yet. Here posting some of my ponderings in a private email string i for whatever reason got invited to:


hello angus, alex, jonathan, XXXX, CCCC 🙂

i would like to express appreciation for the invitation to observe and take part in this (these) private thread(s) since i am very curious and wanting to understand how disagreements within this specific nvc community are approached and dealt with.

thank you angus for creating this small pocket of hope.

as far as i understand there is no transparent method presented for conflict resolution in spite of SynCom in its description promoting conflict resolution as one of the purposes for the group. [correct me if i’m mistaken] i myself have been told by jonathan to keep conflicts involving alex away from public postings in the group, and have yet not been presented with an alternative. i have witnessed coercion and diagnosing/pathologization in place of good-will and understanding. [and i’m willing to give concrete examples of this behavior from alex and jonathan as moderators of SynCom and Pondering — if only given space for it! where?]

i would like to have a space where it’s possible to speak of these experiences. is anybody in this thread interested in this topic?

OBSERVATION: what i observe here — in this thread — is that there is a conflict.

FEELINGS: i feel exhaustion and despair (mixed with boredom and impatience) in relation to what i imagine to be cross-talk and words attached with the weight of unspoken feelings and needs, and i have fears in relation to how my spoken feelings and needs will be received by the rest of the people in this thread (as demands instead of gifts) and i also fear some of the possible responses (silence. anger.)

NEEDS: a space where there’s a possibility for equal participation. where there’s  co-operation. clarity. mutuality. a common approach/understanding.

REQUEST: the specific topic for discussion/clarity that would interest me is a common understanding (and following that a shared awareness with the rest of the SynCom/Pondering-community) on the concrete approach(es)/method(s) of conflict resolution that can be called upon/requested in these nvc spaces.

this would give me hope that this is a place where we can “walk the talk” or “practice what we preach”. a place created and motivated by the stuff that dreams are made of.

take care,

Conversation with Jay Blanco

by Milla — she=he

This is copy pasted from a note that I was attached to on facebook. It was created by a guy called Jay Blanco, with the intention of promoting a film called Chameleon Street by Wendell B Harris. I don’t care to go into the details. This post is one of those posts that I make to ‘vent’. To rid myself of nasty feelings, by taking pride and joy (or refusing to take any Shame and Grief) in simply expressing What Is. No energy wasted on giving my interpretation of the events. No analysis. No angle. [well. the emc link in this post provides my angle, apart from that..] This is Me – Now. And this is Jay – Now. This is what is. Here presented from a generally despised and shunned culture promoting openness. No secrets to be kept. No secrets to feel dirty about. No approval to be gained or punishment to be evaded. Just. What is.

—  —  — Jay’s Note on Facebook —

Race, Identity, and Hysterectomies: On ‘Chameleon Street’

by Jay Blanco on Tuesday, 24 August 2010 at 18:41

Wendell B. Harris, Jr.’s ‘Chameleon Street’ is one of The Great Films of the last twenty-five years, and in my top ten. Hilarious, harrowing, exhilarating, relevant, and a crowd-pleaser besides, I saw it for the first time at American Museum of the Moving Image in 1992 and the sold-out audience laughed and cringed and oohed and gave a standing ovation soon as end credits began, afterwards engaging in conversation with strangers sitting beside and behind them.


Wendell B. Harris on Spielberg’s ‘Catch Me If You Can’, the term ‘post-racial’, and the history of ‘Chameleon Street’ (also, the comment by that young woman in the audience is particularly relevant to this venue of facebook, and what we all do here)–watch to its end:


“If you are in any way empowering the masses, giving the masses more tools, then you are circumscribed.”



On the correct grammatical use of the word ‘F U C K’:


“Has anyone ever told you that white people who get caught in the rain smell exactly like wet dogs? This is fact.”:


Still one of my favorite scenes of all time:


Black Barbie:





Art for VHS copy I still own.

—  —  — end of the Chameleon Street note.

The last comment was written after, and the two before that, during the chat that follows below.

The comment below, hopefully viewed as on-topic in discussing the film, was added a day later:

My angle on the chat below is expressed in the link provided. I’m tired of being exposed to and not getting – most often myself ending up ‘making’ – space to address:


…. … ..

way too intense, even for me


what is too intense?


should be working, not writing literary manifestos defending my personal facespace preferences


you choose what to do with your life.


indeed. and id rather not go back and forth on facespace of all places about this anymore


you are angry?


wrote a response…hope it makes sense

feel stupid

and silly

and misunderstood

and disturbed


difficult to understand where i come from?


or more into your own feelings?


with every response, i was concerned only with your feelings. with your last response, it became personal attack. so no, not really. im more into staying away from toxicity.

with every response, i was concerned only with your feelings. with your last response, it became personal attack. so no, not really. im more into staying away from toxicity.

that said, i responded. and im not im’ing u, which i havent done in years

I *am im’ing you

which i havent done in years

facespace in general to me is supremely toxic


can you pause.


what do you mean by “with every response”? what responses? where?

and what do you mean with “concerned only about your feelings”?

what did you experience as a “personal attack”?

what do you experience as “toxicity”?

what does im’ing mean?


in my response, i mentioned that if u have a response to anything oher than the film, or links posted, u email me privately. i really do have to get back to work, as im a counselor and people have appointments…email me if u have something to say….i attempted to explain privately three times (now four) what i meant by ‘chameleon’ message i sent…all the questions u just asked, i can only answer one: im=instant message. the others lead me to clearly have a communication problem. i believe ive tried. to explain. to be understood. to ‘listen’, well as one can on this dreaded internet. im sorry for it. but ive got to go.


now you are avoiding explanation

of messages you sent to me in private

i would like to have those explanations

especially now since you’ve expressed in the thread

that you do care for those things

i hope it’s not a personal preference of yours to ignore me in private?


to *believe we clearly have a communication problem. milla ahora, ive done nothing BUT explain.


i haven’t even begun to ask you


i’ve only tried to get a time to meet where we can talk through the messages you sent to me.

so that i could ask you directly about what you meant.


and all uve done is ask what i meant by this or that


like. questions. answer.

could we have a talk sometime. where i can address you with the questions i have in relation to what you wrote in private?


ive told u more than 3x now, email me your questions and when time allows, ill perhaps answer them. best answer i can give u. i told u before, i barely speak to long time friends. strangers halfway around the world? no. strangers who feel (to myself–i never speak for others) toxic, and who are continually confrontational and judgmental without any seeming attempt to open-heartedly understand the boundaries/personal experience of others? no. had you simply sent me your specific myriad questions, id have answered them (and my guess, still not be understood). i was silly for reaching out.


even now, offer stands. but this back and forth on my facespace? no more for me


you are saying that you would maybe answer my questions?

not for sure?


said 4x i would….and its my prerogative to answer or not answer, always. why on earth do u continue to try to take that away from me..or anyone?


(i experience your comments as very judgmental. if i don’t fit your expectations i’m “toxic”..)

do you experience yourself as judgmental when you say this?

quoting you: ”
You’re not the lunatic. I am. Asking you try and respect my eccentricities (which include not always expressing myself very well), as I try to respect yours and others. ”


i would expect no less of u…i ask someone something, esp a virtual stranger, i expect i may never hear from them. it is presumptuous otherwise.


your behavior fits into emc. and this bothers me “if you would have done this and that i would have replied. but now since you are this and that, i can’t promise anything.” it feels really uncomfortable to be exposed to that type of behavior.

emc – everyday male chauvinism.


i think i can say that without it being judgmental.


more as a: you’re speaking with a loud tone, i’m scared that someones going to get hurt when you do that, could you lower your voice?

just expressing a wish.

that it’s possible to respond to.


did u get my last response?


nope. i’ve only seen the writing bubble going off and on.

this was the last thing from you: i would expect no less of u…i ask someone something, esp a virtual stranger, i expect i may never hear from them. it is presumptuous otherwise.


and so why should i bother with honest intimate convo, if everything i tell u in private is shared anyway?


are you angry?


im a counselor, part time professionally, full time privately. its one of the very few things I do well. i counsel ‘fresh’ rape survivors and survivors of childhood sexual abuse. I deal with the men who abuse them—narcissists, sociopaths all. i was engaged to two women who were diagnosed extreme borderlines. the point? i know ‘toxic’. and don’t take it lightly. and never took others judgements of u to heart. going only on my own personal observation, feeling, experience.


are you saying that i’m toxic?


ive been hurt already and it matters lttle to u….do u not see that, milla?


and are you saying that you are qualified to label other people with this word?


as much as anybody is and only with regard to my own safety


in what way are you hurt by calling me toxic?

and judgmental?


where is the space for me to speak of behavior that i am uncomfortable with in relation to you?


u SEEM toxic to me–to ME…i only ever speak for myself…please dont put words in my mouth…i am hoping its not true …if it were it would mean i was being masochistic by corresponding with u


it seems as though thats all uve done milla…this is the very first time ive had anything to say and i have the right after ur last two responses…again, i asked u from go and even in these im’s to let me know ur questions.


“seems as though thats all uve done”? what behavior or action or non-action is it you are referring to?

“first time ive had anything to say” what does that mean? to say in relation to what?


u SEEM to take absolutely no responsibility whatsoever and SEEM to revel in pushing others buttons. but i am also wide open to the simple fact that we just do not correspond well. i can tell u that ive never had this problem with anyone else before, even strangers, even having (in the past—i no longer do it) heated discussions about porn, race, etc. as for my chauvinism, i can tell u that id have had the same response to a male…actually, id never have peivately emailed a male to begin with, let alone gone as far as ive already gone now. but u see and feel what u see and feel. my saying i MIGHT get back to u has nothing to do with ur being female (again, it’s the only reason i continually give u the benefit of the doubt despite my immense discomfort) and everything to do with the fact that uve already crossed boundaries that are extremely important to me and you are a complete and utter stranger. i would never expect anything less from someone i had a question for whom i didnt know personally…

relation to ‘where is the space for me to speak of behavior that i am uncomfortable with in relation to you?’


the boundaries crossed are?


what are ur questions, milla?


let’s set a time for it.

to talk it through.

your messages was sent quite some time ago.

and then you can get specific with whatever it is that you feel uncomfortable with.


we can create equal space.


ive cancelled an appointment. why do u insist on us making a date…even months ago u were doing this.

i asked u to email me ur questions…u did not

months later, here we are

and u want to set a date and time for it


yes. you asked me now to send me an email.

when i wrote to you before.

this wasn’t clear.


what you call ‘insisting’ i call ‘asking’

there’s a difference

and in the response you were giving at the time

i was making an effort in in understanding what you were saying

cause you were saying that you would be okay with chatting

and giving and email address


as in now



nothing ever seems clear enough for u and i say this without malice…but frustration, exhaustion. i told u on more than one occasion i happy to correspond with you via facespace and even passed on an address

u only seemed satisfied with mic and cam…


this is your interpretation

not based on anything happening in reality


im reading messages now

thats a put down


what is a put down?

that you are speaking out of your reality




and that i’m saying that “no. i was satisfied with a chat”


female coworker agrees


how can i say it?

for you to hear it the way i intend it to be?



can i please speak. finish this?


‘thats all in ur convoluted mind, its not what really happened’


speaking from now

what is real for me now

is that i would like to not have this conversation now

but i would like to have this talk with you

where i could ask you direct questions about behavior that i felt uncomfortable about

and i’m very willing to hear you out

on what behavior you experience as uncomfortable


i said, happy to correspond with u this way…and understand if u choose not to….explained it wasnt personal but i have problems with (and little time for) internet webcams.


can i say it again

repeat it

that i’ve never said that i absolutely insist and want a webcam

it was a suggestion

i hear that you don’t want that


ive said what i have to say. u chose to deflect and turn it back on me.


i am okay with this



i hate chatting almost as much

does that matter?


does it matter that you’ve called me toxic

what am i deflecting?


i wasnt calling u toxic until half an hour ago…. months have passed since my private message

uve called me much as well… before i told u how i felt…. by the way, words in mouth: i said this FEELS toxic


you have an urgent need to talk about this now?


again rather than go back and forth, why not ask me ur original questions?

all this time, all this emotion and (for me) horrible feeling, we couldve been doing it when i first asked an hour or so ago


can we set a time for this? you started this chat on your terms and your conditions. i would like to get some time to read over the messages and then get back to you on the questions i have. would this be okay for you?


milla, i have no say. do u get that i asked u this months ago? on ur terms?


you asked me months ago to have a talk about sexist behavior on your part?

on my terms?

(i am not being snarky whatever that means. i’m asking questions cause what you say does not make sense to me)

you have no say? what does that mean?


u had confusion/issues/what have u about a private email i sent u…i asked what they were

please ask away i said in various facespace emails

lets webcam u said

i said i couldnt but please feel free to send me ur queries

nothing from u




u cross boundaries…u judge, scorn, accuse, say otherwise hurtful things, then when i respond, i am being sexist. u take zero responsibility for whatever ur part might be. do u believe u did anything wrong at all? u are terribly snarky. which means quietly snide, surreptitiously sarcastic or disrespectful


you said: “My gmail is internetsucksass@gmail (seriously), but again, gmail has no cam/mic option, so it’d be just IM. Also, don’t email me there–I keep account solely for chat (which hasn’t happened in some time) and so never check it for email.”

what i am asking you now

since YOU contacted me over IM

is if i would have an opportunity

to ask you those questions

that i had

which took quite some time

messages back and forth

on trying to find a means

of speaking that would work for both of us

and it seemed in your last message

that you would be okay with gmail


so i am checking with you now


wish u had done this in that timely, thoughtful manner before crossing that line

since rid of gmail account


crossing what line?


again i deplore chat




crossing what line, where how?


so, in that original email about mr. harris’ comment, i was sexist, or deemed sexist?


i experience this as you projecting a lot of feelings on me. and i experience it as highly uncomfortable.

are you okay with having this chat with me

at a time

that we both


could choose and be okay with

cause right now


ditto to everything uve said since the skype invite


YOU are the one who is insisting on speaking.

when i would like to have the space to make the questions i originally had

are you okay with this?


my point, if i can make it one last time, is that ur asking a lot

after all uve said


your point is

that i ..?

you sent me a private message

i responded

you sent some more stuff

i felt uncomfortable

then i asked to have a talk with you about it


that its not fair…that ive been a mess throughout this chat…that i am baffled, hurt, that i feel assaulted and unsafe


what is not fair?

can we use a talking stick?

it usually helps when a chat is emotional.


that ive been shaking throughout…that u seem to give nothing, only accuse…and now are asking that i remain this way until u see fit to FINALLY ask ur questions


are you okay with using a talking stick?


my point is we are going back and forth with accusations and instead, why dont u just express what ud wanted to express, thoughtfully, from the heart months ago? i honestly dont know if i can do this later… im not sure at all it will ever get resolved…i believe u have an agenda and that agenda will always be hurtful to me


i feel really uncomfortable in this chat. it’s as if i don’t have space.

a talking stick would help.


ur rules


what is accusing about a talking stick?


never used the word ‘accusing’ in that response


are you okay with a talking stick?


im okay with talk from the heart…THAT is what i respond to. uve not done it. uve been snarky and in ur way controlling.

i hate b.s.

i hate arguing

i hate chatting…just be real

whats in ur heart?


i am speaking from my heart.

i experience this talk as one-sided and unfair.

a talking stick would create a calmer space for me to speak with ease. knowing that i get the space to say what i wish to say.

it would help me in understanding better what you are trying to say.

i experience great discomfort

and sadness.

in getting stereotypes and negative feelings projected on me.


i experience our entire correspondence as such as well. i feel like a fool and very put upon. misunderstood, judged, mocked, scorned, stereotyped.


i’m wondering if you would be okay with using a talking stick?


funny we should use the same word


are you okay with using a talking stick?

do you understand the purpose of a talking stick?

have you used talking sticks in conversations before?


id rather just be real….at any point u can say what u wish…just as u said to me early in this convo…u have control over what u do in life. when someone is real with me, i bow before it

feel free


in my heart is a very sad woman

using a talking stick

allows and gives space

to get in touch with that heart

allows for the other to sit back and breathe and listen and really connect with what the other is saying

now whenever i say something i can’t finish it.

i get interrupted

i don’t feel listened to

and i don’t know how much space to give to you.

if you start speaking. and you have a talking stick

then i listen until you’re finished with what you want to say

this way you could feel listened to as well.


the one who has the talking stick gets to speak until they are finished. then they pass it on to the other

and then they listen

it’s a very powerful and useful tool

especially when the conversation is emotional

i would feel safer with a talking stick

less abused

now i feel abused

in this conversation

i feel you are not ready to hear me

to hear me as i am

not how you perceive me to be


i feel disgusted by the constant projections

and that your co-worker is there with you saying that “yes, she’s snarky”

i don’t feel heard.

i don’t experience that there’s a real interest in hearing what i have to say.

i see your writing bubble. but there are no comments posted.

i don’t know if it’s facebook chat not working.

if we would be using a talking stick then the thing i would do next would be to hand it over to you like this


i don’t know if it’s the chat box not working but i can’t see any comments by you.

all i am asking for is to have a calm



there absolutely was before u became abusive urself. my perceptions are based solely on fact. the only, ONLY people i judge are those sociopaths and narcissists. as they do harm willingly, knowingly, and dont care and will never change. certainly, i do not judge women, ‘toxic’ or no (and im not saying u are that). my own therapist (I just cancelled that appt as well) just told me i ‘take womens word as gospel’ and that i shouldnt do this.


and i truly wish ud have said all of this before complulsively saying some of what u said…. u have not listened to me,,,uve waited and then attacked what i said, not taking into account i am deeply hurt and on verge of tears (and almost nothing elicits such a visceral response from me). i feel i n c r e d i b l y projected upon. long before this chat.

no one is or was reading over my shoulder

i repeated the comment and asked if it sounded passive aggressive, ‘snarky’

she laughed when i said it

meaning: ‘and how’

but no, in case u havent realized and i dont think u have, i am nothing if not deeply private

THAT is just one boundary



i don’t know if you are using a talking stick.

if i knew

then i could wait

but now i dont


i perceive u as smart. i perceive i as struggling. scarred. no judgement—i am too (if i am good effective at all as counselor it is because i UNDERSTAND first hand all those feelings–including that of ridiculously low self-esteem, which I have in droves). i perceive u as lonely. i perceive u as generous.



“before u became abusive urself. my perceptions are based solely on fact” so there comes the discussion on what abuse is. and in order to move it any further it would be nice to move it from labeling words to concrete descriptions of behavior and actions. “when you do this, or that .. i feel uncomfortable .. because..” ‘abuse’ or ‘toxic’ or ‘snarky’ or ‘judgmental’ or ‘sexist’ doesn’t say a thing. doesn’t explain to the other what happened.

fact is not labeling words

fact is observable behavior or words

fact is that i wrote something to you

and fact is that you read it to a person

and fact is that you read it out loud in a certain way

and that this could have been read out loud in many different ways


‘s raining”

can be said with love.


and so ur discussing the ethics of sharing something meant to be private with someone publicly?


with hate

in despair

can i finish



and so uve been misunderstanding me and my intentions since that second email i sent u long ago





i never gave u the stick


i m a real human being

sitting in front of this computer

i m okay with continusing


why cant u take ur own criticism?


if you agree with some rules


because so am i


are we using a talking stick

this is the minimum,

for me

are we using a talking stick?

this would soothe me

keep me safe

help me in knowing when to listen to you

and when it’s time for me to speak

can we use a talking stick?

can we agree on that?

my heart is pounding

my stomach is cramped


“i showed your comment to a friend who also could not make any sense out of it. ” rules must be for both parties….uve not once admitted to any wrong doing whatsoever…agree to THAT


there’s such a big sadness

what i’m asking you for

is if





if im to care about ur sadness i must feel u care about mine


on using

a talking


u dont seem to



do we?


at all







a prerequisite to the stick



can we use a talking stick?

please show the whole conversation to your friend?

or i mean

it would help if you would show the entire conversation to your friend




i’m here

but im finding it



to speak with you

when you say at first you dont agree to a stick

and then you say that i break the rule




and then you say this and then you say that





who does not give



i was asking for a talking stick.

that’s all


or no

and you just say that there’s something wrong with my behavior

in checking if we have an agreement on using it or not

you say there has to be mutual rules

consent usually requires for the person wanting something to happen to check with the other if they would be okay with it too

you sit here

and you talk shit

to me

and say that im a bad person

and you’re so disrespectful

and you can’t even

respond to a simple question

about common rules for speaking

instead you go on and on about how horrible i am

and blah blah blah


words in mouth…never said u were a bad person…u will misquote me when u go public with this conversation


there is not misquoting

when you have the whole conversation

come on..l

“misquoting” a whole talk…


if i thought u were a bad person id have walked away a long time ago… u dont know me, milla. clearly


no i don’t

and i don’t pretend to

that’s why i’ve been asking

for an opportunity

to ask those questions

about things i felt uncomfortable about


if im to agree to listen to u…a stranger that has hurt me incessantly in just one afternoon, made no attempt to understand or at the very least acknowledge that shes crossed lines i dont even allow family to cross…well… prerequisite to the stick, i need to know opening my insides will matter

u dont want to know me

u want to accuse me of things

open my eyes to what a terrible person I MYSELF am

if u wanted to know me, ud have given me something

and not just thrown things


what do you want from me?

what words would be experienced as comforting?

how do you want me to be like?


all the things u say u want from me… u ask a lot and i dont even know u i will probably never meet u in person


jay. i don’t want to talk with you now. i would like to talk with you at another moment.

i don’t want to have this conversation with you now.

i feel uncomfortable when i speak of my feelings and then you turn to yourself. over and over again.


that is ur prerogative… but i may not want to do this again

and that is what i experience u as doing over and again



take care.



bye bye

Jay is offline.

00:12Jay is online.
00:22Jay is offline.
00:25Jay is online.

u made me feel like such a creep when u have an extensive history of doing this. thats fact. im sorry for it. i absolutely know u are sad. and that hurts me. i mean it. ive been through a lot…too bad u never got to know me…im sorry for your sadness and for any more hurt ive caused u. in realizing the above, i no longer feel confused or ‘scarred’ by anything uve said. im deeply sorry


i will post this on my blog. venting ‘what is’ will help me get over ‘what is’. you will not be misquoted.


i dont get it


i have no problem speaking with you at some other time.


sorry milla


with clear conditions.


i didnt understand…i was defensive and hurt and confused


if someone asks a question. that the other one responds.


i’m not okay with continuing this now.



again im sorry


i’m willing to speak with you at some other time.

i believe connection is possible.


i wish i did


one question: is ur blog private?

i said a lot of personal things about myself and past abuse

id rather u misquote me and not post our entire convo…THAT was always my main boundary

think about it




look up the quotes now that you don’t want there.

tell me the quotes.


milla, ive no problem with u going on about me and calling me what u will…i truly dont. ive a problem –clearly–with my private stuff…the stuff i confided in u personally–being made public…its clearly unethical…feel free to post an offensive quote or two, but really, that would cross a boundary that can never be recovered. i dont get it

not my anger

as u called it

but everything else


okay. so you won’t recover then. ever.

now i’m being snarky.


i dont get it


you can also call it

fed up.

yeah. that’s just it. you don’t get it.


no i get u… i get ur hurt… but posting stuff publicly about my past and what i do and that is wrong.

i dont know.


yes. i get it. i’m on the wrong side of right and wrong.


no. no accusations on that


and no. you don’t get my hurt. cause you don’t get what was seriuosly messed up in this conversation.

you don’t get what’s going on with me at all. cause you don’t get what’s going on with you.


whatever happened in this convo doesnt forgive ur posting stuff only u and my therapist should know


only me

am i your second therapist?

or how many others have you told the same stuff?

“you have no right to say what i do to other people, cause this is only between you and me”


i do. do u not believe u did anything wrong whatsoever at all with regard to me? u never answered that question. even if u had answered no id have been ok. thats the truth. thats what i needed, acknowledgement. others know. but strangers should not know.


“an your poisonous and you don’t get anything but i get you cause i counsel people”


no—u can say what i do…but not expose other privacies


i’ve already crossed all your boundaries.

and now you’re sorry


its simple…its respect…its what i was asking for hoping for all along


and i can’t cross this or do that

jay you don’t care about me one least bit


no im sorry because others emailed me



this whole conversation has been abusive from line one to the end


not trying to be… really dont feel as i did before… attacked



i feel sad

and sorry


i care as much as i can about someone ive never met

u cant expect more



you care about yourself

you don’t want me to post this conversation on my blog


i care because i can relate… because i feel like i just followed in others footsteps


so you are now trying to speak with me so that i won’t post it

you care about yourself


no…i said i was sorry before i said u were posting milla

go back and check


well. i’m saying clearly that i will post.


no i dont want my privacy breached


and that you will have to live with that.


but thats a separate issue


just as i have to live with this loooong conversation.

sorry. is a part of the same behavior that i talked about before.

sorry is not the same as wanting to change ones behavior

and really doing the work in finding out what wasn’t okay.

and so on.


ive pissed u off and now ur hurting me back. do i care about me? all i wanted before was an acknowledgement, milla.


sorry doesn’t mean anything.


again, do u not believe u did anything at all wrong in the slightest


at any point?


i am not doing this to hurt you. i am doing this to stay sane and give my life and meaning and value.

i believe in constructive conversations.

where it’s possible to speak of behavior

and say how that affects.


again, i wish that ud feel free to post my behavior, but not my personal private past things and what i do for a living and all hat

03:36Jay is offline.

to answer your question: no i don’t believe i’m perfect. i believe things i do can affect other people negatively. i also believe there are other ways of existing in this world than to hide all the dirt or to heap it on top of another human being


Sent to me as a message:


again, i wish that ud feel free to post my behavior, but not my personal private past things and what i do for a living and all hat

03:36Jay is offline.

Unexamined life is not worth living (nvc conflict)

by Milla — she=he

The man on the bed, has been quoted to have said: "I know nothing except the fact of my ignorance." What you see in the picture is Socrates taking poison as punishment for thinking out loud. In ancient Greece philosophizing could be lethal.


Even after he has been convicted by the jury, Socrates declines to abandon his pursuit of the truth in all matters. Refusing to accept exile from Athens or a commitment to silence as his penalty, he maintains that public discussion of the great issues of life and virtue is a necessary part of any valuable human life. “The unexamined life is not worth living.” (Apology 38a) Socrates would rather die than give up philosophy, and the jury seems happy to grant him that wish.”

I’m one of the privileged. Speak different languages. Have gone to school. I can read and write, and living in Finland, I would have access to free education if I wanted to.

I’m one of the fortunate. In the miserable country I’m living in, where social culture is all about how to keep oneself distant. Drinking, and cursing — why care about social relations when there’s social welfare and a booming mental health business — anti-depressants are as common as painkillers are on HangOver day. The Finnish Kalsarikännit neatly wraps the culture up in one word – UnderwearBlotto – sitting at home, in your underwear, alone, in a drunken stupor.

The people in this country have access to all and take it for granted. Believing in free travel – working and living wherever we want in the world – and believing just as strongly that others should not have equal access to what’s ‘ours’. What’s inside the nation boundaries are for Finns Only.

So here I am. One of the privileged. One of the fortunate. I have choice. And I have something that is truly unwanted in this society — Curiosity. I’m lucky to recently have met a  person as wonderfully gifted in questioning everything as I am. I get the mental stimulation I need when speaking with her. Well. She’s no longer in Finland. And I’ve been isolating myself. At home. Alone. Not drunk. But spending endless hours online — another addiction. I’m obsessed with learning. I have a need to know myself. Thinking. Feeling. Trying to understand. I want to know my pain, and I want to transform it. I want to come close to my numbness and see what it hides. I’m a mad combination of depression and creativity. I’m healing and tearing up fresh wounds. All at the same time. Trying to figure out how to make human interaction work.

I can’t deal with social relations. And yet I try. The curious friend was an enormous support for my sanity in the beginning of a conflict I’m experiencing within two NVC groups called Synergycommunication and PonderingNVC — my current online obsessions. I got on the groups since I wanted support in learning NVC on a practical level. I’m not surprised I got into conflict. It’s common enough in my life. At least I don’t get killed for opening my mouth. In my case the incredulous reactions to my speaking most often lead to social exclusion, and my mental health experiencing a serious beating. But nothing lethal.

These groups have been an amazing learning experience. Starting off raw and violent. After the first conflict surfaced, I was repeatedly suggested by the owner and moderator of Synergycommunication that I would make a good choice for myself leaving the group. I didn’t know what to hold on to. What I was supposed to learn. Now — after two months — I’ve found my feet. I have some basic idea of ‘how to do’ NVC. Sometimes I can stand there by myself. Sometimes I crawl through the madness dragging my feet behind. The friend who gave me support and sanity-checks, when I was crawling, outed herself as a philosopher during the time we got to know each other. The other day I asked her to recommend a film and the suggestion I got from her got me thinking that it’s about time I out myself too: Unexamined life is not worth living. I won’t take a cup of poison, but I won’t shut up either.


From my exploration on ‘SynCom’ and ‘Pondering’:

I am not willing to dialogue at SynCom because i have a need for
clarity and consistency in relation to the methods used for moderation
in general, and of my posts, in particular. The current method does
not meet my need for consistency and harmony with the intent of NVC
– connecting, and together finding strategies that meet all the needs –
I want my needs to matter and be valued equally in dialogue with
the moderators.

Also, I am currently not willing to dialogue at SynCom, since there’s nobody, to my knowledge, moderating or releasing my posts to this space.

To be continued..