I really feel like talking about this subject again.
I’ve been subjected to fandom shaming multiple times in my life. One thing I sometimes did back then was to “hate” something just to spite the person who shamed me. It usually involved various bands or movies and I would tell them straight up “I no longer like the thing you made fun of me for.” just to get on their nerves. Sometimes it would be a temporary thing where I would like something again. I’ve never been able to get someone to stop liking something, but at most when I know I’m right about something I have made people not look at something the same way again especially if there’s something problematic about a fandom or a piece of media. The most successful attempt even though I was only passing information involved telling people about a VERY certain 2019 Netflix documentary covering a music plagiarism case. If you know me, you know exactly what it is, what song, who was involved in that court case, and what caused it to be the straw that broke the camel’s back which caused that lawsuit to happen. I think some of you will get the answer right. It certainly opened up some eyes and also further proved me right about what was associated with that case.
As I’ve gotten older, I’ve been losing hobbies. Some of it involves me growing out of certain interests, but other times I remembered being made fun of for certain interests where I just gave up. It really didn’t helped that I struggled with committing to certain activities when I was a lot younger even though there were other issues I was dealing with then. Part of me wondered what it would be like if I gave into temptation to get someone to stop liking something and how effective I could be at it. Conversely, I listened to a podcast where someone talked about how you have so many people online tearing others down (Twitter and YouTube being very specific examples in the conversation) and he wondered how anyone could get an enjoyment in doing so instead of doing something else like talking a walk outside for example. This felt like an angel and devil on my shoulder kind of thing where I think if I should verbally attack someone for their fandoms. I’m not going to pretend I’m a saint. There is a sliver of me wanting to do so as an indirect revenge against those who insulted me for having some hobbies. There are even times where I feel like I have to make pre-emptive self defense statements before I say why I like something by finding any counterarguments to defend what I have interests in. This even goes with some of my more serious interests, too.
Sorry for rambling. While there are bigger issues in the world, this is something that is still bothering me. Has anyone else had that issue with giving up certain interests because of fandom shaming or just getting older? Have you ever dealt with similar situations?
This topic has been on my mind for weeks. I know I wrote a poem based on that subject. Yes, I know there are worse issues going on right now in the world and this isn’t me ignoring them. Something about the concept of fandom shaming has grabbed my attention with how it affected me years ago. I’ve been fandom shamed for liking anime, independent music (sometimes for specific bands or singers), and even superheroes at one point like how I used to play HeroClix during my teens. I had the toughest time making counterarguments to the people who insulted me. Maybe this was me taking the high road or maybe I was so stupid and naive to have a comeback towards those fools. It also frustrated me when other people like other things, but never get insulted. I’m not just talking about “acceptable” fandoms like sports, shoes, cars, etc., but for certain bands/singers, movies, or games out there.
I have some questions for you because I feel like I’m the only person in the world who gets fandom shamed.
Have you ever been fandom shamed? If so, what was it for?
Have you ever fandom shamed someone? If so, what was it that the other person liked?
How do you deal with being fandom shamed if it happened to you?
So much self-realization after weeks of reflection
An anniversary shows up after getting the gown and cap
I proved I could make it in four year’s time on time
Some of my peers couldn’t even say that
While I wasn’t a valedictorian or salutatorian in that realm
I still took my studies seriously
There were things I learned which I appreciated
But as I grew older, I’ve been realizing what I DIDN’T learn regardless if it was relevant to my degree or not
Socializing was a trial by fire of sorts
I was awkward at times, I do confess
I was too music of a music fan and didn’t talk about my other interests that much.
With that said, I realized how much I was in hell
Self-righteous fake Christians moralizing and wrecking my self-esteem in subtle ways
Some men and women got to be psychological rapists to me while pretending to be my friend
I wish I knew about the insidious and hidden attacks to my mind
One attempt failed when one person said “White power!” to my face my sophomore year
Boy, did I give him and his buddies the riot act by yelling at them that day
Overt, covert…didn’t matter
I didn’t deserve the torture
While I’m thankful for certain professors teaching me and making some legit friendships,
I underestimated the negatives
I should’ve progressed farther after the fact
There were situations out of my control and some were in control, but I should’ve improved in the latter
Hidden pains wreck my psyche with these echoes of the past
I hope to succeed better than all the fake friends and true enemies I knew during those four years
And not be crippled by my regrets
Easier said than done.
Here’s a break from my poetry and other posts. I am aware about the serious issues going on from this week alone, so this isn’t me ignoring what’s going on around the world. This kind of started after listening to James Humphrey and Imo Emah’s podcast series where they critique some Disney movies of all things which were quite interesting. I’m glad they weren’t sycophants covering all these movies which was a huge plus. Going with that as well as still self-analyzing all the psychological damage I received in my life, I really got to thinking about how I was made fun of for what I liked as well as what I didn’t liked.
Before I get into these thoughts, I will promise you that I’m not going to beat a dead horse about that freaking 90s franchise that some of my regular readers know I love to bash on here and my film review blog. It’s much bigger than that.
Did I ever like Disney movies when I was a kid? Of course. I wouldn’t lie about that. I stopped watching them when I was in my teens mainly because I really got into anime as well as starting to check out international movies. What really ticked me off during my high school and college years was being a target of bullying for what I liked. Anime and some superhero stuff (I used to play HeroClix back in the day) more so during my teens while I was insulted for liking independent music during my time at university. While I was bullied for worse things like my heritage which I won’t deny, I was also made fun of at college for NOT liking Disney stuff. I thought that was weird because I thought it was too childish even though I never voiced it out loud to anyone. Yet at the same time even to this day, I see adults rocking merch from the House of Mouse and NO ONE says anything. I’m not just talking about people in their 20s or 30s, I mean people old enough to be my parents and even grandparents. Is liking Disney in America one of those “bully-proof” or “acceptable” hobbies like sports, shoes, cars, or premium cable TV shows (think about the stuff on HBO, AMC, FXX, or Showtime) where no one can make fun of you? I’ve wondered about that.
I absolutely hated how that fandom would be treated with Mickey Mouse gloves while I was a laughingstock for watching Gankutsuou or listening to Starflyer 59 among other examples. How was it that other people could watch “kiddie” movies and shows with no pushback? I’ve wondered that for years and I was furious on the inside. For years, I wanted to find ways where I can figure out people before I would insult them for what they liked if they had issues with me, but I never had the opportunity to do so. There were ideas of bashing the movies they watched, how they have bad animated role models, or how formulaic the plots are. As I got older, I got more rhetorical ammunition against that fandom with the racism, sexism, or malevolent corporate stuff I’ve learned about with the house that Walt built. If I knew about these issues then like I know now, I would give them all the riot act and try to verbally break their self-esteem as retaliation for all the insults I’ve received from them by dropping all these facts in their faces. There’s still vitriol against other fans that was compounded as I put up with petty insults as well as severe verbal attacks in different topics. It’s a miracle I didn’t blow up on bloggers who like the works from that company especially when it comes to multiple movie examples I’ve openly criticized including the one example I don’t need to bring up again at this time (trust me, I would’ve made some people look like hardcore bigots just with that one example if I knew all that baggage back then). Sometimes, I wonder how I can even read reviews from bloggers I enjoy that happen to cover movies from the Mouse and not have a conniption fit in the process. Yes, I still have anger about this subject with various fandoms being treated better than the topics I enjoy. No wonder I like other things like history, geography, and avant-garde stuff even though I also enjoy lesser topics.
As I continued this self-realization, I knew this was hypocrisy on them. I still hate how I get bashed for liking certain things while no one insults them or at the very least I don’t see them. Part of me wonders of there were other intersections about me that made me a target like race, my personality, mental health, etc. Part of it was jealousy. Even to this day, I struggle with sometimes caring too much about what others think. It’s really tough when I get demonized for standing up for myself even when I’m not doing or saying anything wrong. I even thought that if I had my way back then, I’d make sure people would be forced to respect my hobbies and interests while also having all the right rhetorical arguments to bash someone’s hobbies if they dared try to insult what I like. Look, I’m not Jesus here. I’m not trying to be some perfect individual or some flawless moral guardian. I don’t want to lie about some of the thoughts I had even when it comes to jealousy and sorting out my psychological baggage. There was jealously in wishing that I was never hurt by anyone no matter how petty or severe the attacks are against me. I was also angry how I felt like not many people were criticizing them or worse, extolling the bad things that have been documented. While I still get angry at people giving those movies and that company a pass for everything, part of that anger stems from jealousy and not just doing my best to call out evil in this world.
I know this isn’t some mind-enriching post, but I just feel like I have to get this off my chest as I’m still trying to make sense of my mental state.
The selective logic just became more obvious
Those who thought the former duchess was attention seeking
Were the same who sobbed about Robin Williams and Chester Bennington to name a few
Saving face was the name of the game
As people become keyboard mental health activists of convenience
Where was MY sympathy whenever I spoke up about my issues years ago?
I wouldn’t be surprised if my former bouts of self-harm made certain people ecstatic
Mental health only mattered to some
As the addendums don’t need to be addressed explicitly or reverse engineered dog whistles
Others should be thankful I’m not a troll or a bully
Who knows what psychological damage I could do if I was good at insulting others
Maybe being kind wasn’t as much of a weakness (even with my bouts of solipsism)
Digital facades have always been on parade
As I’ve seen those who’ve said “Be kind!”
Have been total douchebags offline and/or online
Spare me the fake encouragement
It’s been a while since I did a personal rant, but I’ve bottled up a lot of emotions recently.
As if this past year wasn’t stressful enough for everyone, I have just had enough of internalizing everything. One recurring thought I’ve had was thinking that I’m somehow always wrong and that so many bad things have happened to me. Have there been bad things that happened in my life? Yes. However, sometimes I feel like I’m the only person it ever happens to which adds to bouts of solipsism from time to time. Look, I don’t label myself as some perfect person or some beacon of morality. I’d be a filthy liar if I said that. I have low self-esteem, can be socially awkward at times, passive, can struggle with hidden meaning in people’s words, been bullied to the point of silence, thinking only bad things happen to me, and I don’t know how to be quick-witted. Whenever I had to tell on someone when I was younger, most of the time, no one would do anything about it. If I did something wrong or tried to defend myself (I’m not talking about getting physical), then I was somehow in the wrong.
It’s been rough with bottling up depressing thoughts, anger, and other negative emotions even if I’m smiling on the outside. Am I the only person this happens to? I certainly have enough self-control to not do something heinous with these emotions, so that’s a plus. What does anger me is when so many people get away with so many things. That doesn’t surprise some of you who’ve followed this blog for a while. I’ve dealt with therapists who’ve insulted me in the past which certainly burned. This feeling of being disrespected and people getting away with it even if I speak up was like being psychologically violated. It really didn’t help when I discovered long after the fact how I was being devalued in subtle ways (dog whistles, low-key insults, etc.). I would even do things out of spite to make people leave me alone like “hating” things I admitted to liking or trying to use people’s insults against them in obscure ways. Yeah, it didn’t work. That’s probably no wonder why I’ve been tempted to shame some bloggers even for something as simple as a thought on a movie, for example. I didn’t see anyone else suffer in that way, so I thought they had healthy stable lives. There have been far worse things that have happened to me in real life, but I saw so many things as negative. Glass half empty? That describes how I saw the world even during my childhood. It just sucks having to harbor so many of these bad flashbacks in my brain even when I try to forget or ignore them.
Blogging and having creative endeavors have been cathartic whether it’s poetry, writing reviews, making videos, or other things. Shame how I struggle with thinking I’m a worthless person from time to time, but at least it kept me busy when I wasn’t at work or studying for example.
Personally, it’s a miracle that anyone would be interested in what I type about or present. I wish I didn’t have to pretend everything is fine online and especially offline. Sorry for rambling. I had to get these things off my chest.
Why was I so naive to try and befriend my eventual abusers?
Psychological violations were low-key
To my own brain and esteem
Shame on me, for only seeing their talent or their facades
No class ever taught me about gaslighting
Why was I so stupid thinking I could redeem them?
Saying sorry even for things that weren’t my fault
Became some kind of vicarious intent for these vampires
When I stood up on my own two feet
That’s where they wanted me to change my name to Billie Eilish (if she was relevant during those times, pardon the pun)
I might as well have been the son of Satan himself in their eyes
None of my peers went through what I went through
This arrested developmental was pure stealth in subterfuge
Hugging me while my back became a corporeal sheath to them
Those same parasites never had my consent when they got to my psyche
No AT Field was there to protect the cortex
Avoiding my judgmental glances…
It was a like those blizzard cyclones that plague New England even when those who control them flee to become a Northwesterner (Nor’Wester?)
I never saw agony in their beings. They might as well sing pop punk tunes and name a band after a Blink or Ataris ditty
#FirstWorldProblems is what their laments sound like
Stockholm got the better of my judgment and I never knew why
I’m sick of having to prove my worth, intelligence, and humanity to them, my own friends…
It has been a crazy busy few weeks. There’s been work and me participating in NaNoWriMo. Of course…there’s been everything else going on in the world especially in America.
Relax, I won’t be talking about anything partisan let alone anything political in this post. I can hear the collective sigh of relief no matter if one is to the left, right, center, independent, or apolitical. With that said, I still have been thinking about serious things nonetheless.
In addition to work and writing another book, I have been having thoughts of so many things going on in my life.
As I’ve mentioned before, I’ve been bullied in my life and at times it was quite severe. In hindsight, some of it was very low-key that psychologically affected me. When I would fight back, I would be treated like the bad guy even though I wasn’t being physical against anyone or insulting them. It made me wonder how docile I was while abusive people get away with everything even when I would call them out on their crap. It’s no wonder I can’t stand those who hurt others with impunity as well as never owning up to their misdeeds. I’ve had to own up to my mistakes and sins, so why couldn’t they? It’s like I’ve been getting bad advice for years from people who should know better. Part of me wondered if I should’ve improved in snappy comebacks or insulting people because I’ve always struggled in that regard. It’s sick how I felt like I wasn’t “allowed” to stand up for myself.
There are times where I wonder if it was worth having certain kinds of dreams and goals. I’m sure I mentioned this in a post earlier this year about random goals I used to have like owning a record label, voice acting, or being a touring musician, etc. I guess with COVID, in a weird way, I’m relieved that i didn’t go forward with those pipe dreams. My goals have changed like getting more into writing as well as videography. I have those skills and it allows me to put them to use. There are other ideas for goals that could be more constructive, but I wondered how possible they would be.
The last movie I saw was a documentary about the Congolese Genocide and Leopold II. It was so heartbreaking and it was one of those historical aspects I wish I learned when I was a lot younger regardless of my DNA results. I learned more things and I certainly was uncomfortable with the brutality. It angers me how Leopold never got punished for being responsible for several millions of people dying under his colonizing rule. It was a powerful watch and I think more people should learn about this atrocity.
Those were various thoughts I had recently. I just had to talk about it instead of just a poem or opinions on a news story. Sorry it wasn’t fun. I hope you understand.
I didn’t feel judged at first since I grew up in a multiethnic area. My neighborhood had people of all races represented and everyone got along. No one had an issue with an interracial married couple moving in with my sister and I during my childhood. Having parents of differing ethnic stock was normal to me and I didn’t think that much about it. Sure, I was darker than my dad and lighter than my mom, but I didn’t had any issues with it when it came to my family.
During this time, I read a ton of books, yet I also watched a lot of TV shows (balances it out, right?). I didn’t think too much about the heroes at my young age. I wanted to see the coolest and unique characters. Maybe in hindsight, I should’ve paid more attention like how it was a bad idea for Zach to be the Black Ranger or even how Trini was the Yellow Ranger way back when. I collected action figures of various superheroes of different ethnic groups, but to be honest…most of the heroes were Caucasian that got attention for the toy marketers and whatnot. I know they’re inanimate objects, but maybe Bishop, Sunfire, and Warpath felt like tokens and I didn’t realize it (can’t you tell I was big into X-Men?). Deep in my mind though, I wondered why not many heroes looked like me. I certainly didn’t see that many superheroes who did and certainly not Disney protagonists.
I was fortunate not to deal with as much racism (that I know of) during my elementary school years. Sure, I had my own issues growing up, but nothing too severe as far as bigotry was concerned. With that being said, they slowly became more obvious as I was in my teenage years. Life wasn’t as innocent as I thought even with the history they did teach me in school. When my family moved to a majority-white suburb because of my dad’s job, that’s when it became more apparent as I didn’t see that many Black let alone other POC groups with the exception of a few people of Asian or Indian descent living there. People didn’t believe my mom and dad were married to each other. There were some neighbors who only saw my dad and said to him “At least you’re not part of a Black family moving in”. I didn’t know about that conversation until years later and it broke my heart that anyone would say that. I’m glad my dad called them out on their bigotry and we didn’t associate with them during our time in this town.
Besides that history, there was some dualism in the perception of me existing. There were people who were curious about my heritage which I wasn’t offended by them asking as long as they didn’t say “What are you?” or “Are you American?”. I’ve been mistaken for Indian, Arab, Polynesian, and Native American before (Side note: I’ve had two people directly from India ask if I was Indian and two people of MENA descent [Egyptian and Iranian respectively] wonder if I was a Middle-Easterner). There were people who didn’t have an issue with having both African and European ancestry which is awesome. Unfortunately, there were others who did low-key digs at my ethnic background or considered me worthless. I certainly had enough melanin to not look Caucasian which made me a racial bullying target for some white people and there have been been a couple of Black people who assumed I thought I was better than them because of my mixed heritage while also claiming that I didn’t know anything about being a victim of racism. Those assumptions made me so furious even though I kept quiet since I was bullied into silence back then. Even now, my self-esteem is low enough that I don’t believe I’m better than anyone and I could do an entire post listing all the times others said or did racist crap around me or to me.
I wasn’t the most cognizant of some of these factors when I was far younger, but I certainly got my wakeup call ages ago. Granted, I’m still learning and I can’t stand being put under a microscope by so many people including those that should know better. It’s due to all these jerks that I sadly have to prove my humanity or competence to anyone and everyone.
These past few posts since coming back from my unexpected hiatus have been loaded with negativity even though I was being honest.
Just know that none of that was towards any of my readers, so please understand that.
Weirdly enough, I have this reputation of being optimistic offline or occasionally online, but I’m surprised that people think that way. Then again, I did have a weakness of caring (too much) about what others think even though that’s been changing for years.
The problem is that I happened to internalize a lot of negativity, anger, and depression. It doesn’t help with my long-term memory and how I remember more bad things than good. The times where I try to get help or to get better, I get refused or people think I’m overreacting and over-analyzing. If this was someone else, then the world has to stop to help them.
Can’t you tell that I hate double standards? It’s no wonder I’ve been harboring so much frustration for most of my life and not look like anything’s wrong offline or online most of the time. I know I run the risk of sounding like I suffer from solipsism, but I seriously feel like I’m the only person who gets to suffer whether I do right or the times where I err and I personally don’t see any of that happening to anyone because it didn’t happen before my eyes. It really didn’t help when I was bullied during my youth because most of the teachers wouldn’t do anything even if I told on my enemies. Even when I was in college, these bullies would get away with so much and have connections with the student council or be considered popular. Wow, I guess me being interested in independent music or even obscure movies let alone having melanin made me a pariah. Boy, I wish I would’ve shamed everyone for their hobbies or interests as revenge to break their self-esteem. It’s a miracle how I can still smile or say anything positive from time to time.
Sorry for venting out some of my frustrations, everyone. I wish that none of you end up like me. I’m surprised that I still have people who appreciate my blogs, creative endeavors, reviews, or even my opinions on multiple subjects.