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We've talked about them a lot in our previous posts, but those are kind of scattered through our journal and some of them were written in various states of incoherent rage. This isn't necessarily a bad thing; anger is a sign that your boundaries are being violated, and is as natural and necessary as physical pain is. Expressing it should be a warning to other people to back off, or to help so your pain goes away.

Unfortunately, it also made us hard to understand sometimes, especially when each post usually addressed one particular thing and assumed prior knowledge of what we'd been writing about. So here's the condensed version of why our "family of origin" and "family of choice" are two separate things, and why it would not be healthy or possible for us to change that.

Content note: We don't go into too many details about their physical and emotional abuse, but the ones we do mention might trigger some people. We also talk about their homophobic, transphobic, and sexist religion some, and the things that they've done because of it.

So here are our reasons

First, they abused us in some pretty horrific ways while we were growing up. There are a lot of things we thought were normal, natural, and okay to do to your children (or siblings) that it then turned out everyone we told about them was shocked. Although even back then we were taught to be scared that Child Protective Services could show up and take us away, and that this would be a bad thing. Our parents even used that as a threat when we didn't clean up the yard to their liking, which is not unlike how the Mormon church threatens you with eternal separation from your family and partner(s) if you masturbate (or do some other harmless thing which they disapprove of).

Second, they're part of an abusive religion, which demonstrably contributes to problems like LGBTQ suicide and homelessness and organizes people politically to deprive us of our rights. Not "special" rights, like the right not to have to pay taxes on your government-approved church's property, but things like marriage and family which we were promised and told to look forward to, growing up. Only to find out that because we love more than one person, and they're the wrong gender, and none of us want to have children, that we should be stuffed in a box and forgotten about so that everyone can go on celebrating the "right" kinds of marriage and families. And that this all makes us selfish, even though we're not the ones trying to shame other people just for existing and make them all disappear.

Third, I mean,

Third, they are resistant to learning about, making amends for, or even apologizing for how any of the above have affected us. They hold things that we did or said years ago against us, and my father of origin especially liked saying that if we're offended by something he said it's because we're autistic and misunderstood him. But when we tried to address their abuse, they got all defensive, and kept redirecting the conversation to be about their feelings and blaming us for not "remembering the good times." The furthest we got was when our father of origin said that we have to forgive him, because he didn't know we were autistic and he wouldn't have beaten us if he'd known.

Even when the damage they did to us was easily measurable, like when they reneged on an agreement to cosign a long-term apartment lease and made us pay month-to-month rates, they refused to compensate us for the harm that they did. In some conversations, they denied that they'd ever done anything, even though we have the email CCed to our landlady that said exactly what they were doing and that they knew how much it would cost.

In between denying, evading, and obfuscating the truth about things they did which directly harmed us, and demanding that we overlook it, they accused us of coming out as transgender just to hurt them.

A black-and-white, stick figure-y comic from Cardboard Crack. The Magic: the Gathering player on the left side of the table asks the one on the other side 'Did you see that the character Alesha was revealed to be transgender?' The other says 'Yeah, I can't stand it! Why can't I just enjoy a fantasy storyline without some political statement?!' The first replies 'People aren't transgender to make a political statement.'
Comic used without permission.

All that's just our parents of origin. One of our brothers compared us to a violent criminal for being trans, was proud of telling our parents to cut off contact with us when we came out right before Christmas (back when we still celebrated it), and used to bully and punish us in petty ways in person and in FFXI (an online game). He also liked threatening "immodest" women with violence, and saw nothing wrong with it when we called him on it. The other has no respect for consent or personal space, despite being fiercely protective of the hemp garden in his closet, and has threatened us with a knife before when we refused to keep arguing with him. This was an incident which no one in our family seemed to take seriously, but everyone else that we told about it was horrified.

We have good memories of time spent with all of these people. They were the only constants in our social life, since between being homeschooled and frequently moving we had no other long-term friends. But we're pretty sure they're all narcissistic sociopaths, since they think that our personal choices are All About Them and that we write "lies" about them and their church just to hurt them. Also because they don't seem to be able to empathize with people that they disapprove of, to the point where they think talking about terrible things they have done is worse than their actually doing them.

Sort of like how Mormon church leaders tell people it's wrong to criticize them, even if they really did something wrong.

We currently have no contact with our parents of origin, and don't have online contact information for our siblings even if we wanted to talk to them. We don't want to have contact with any of them until they demonstrate self-awareness, and apologize and try to make amends for their behaviour, instead of just sweeping it under the rug and pretending like nothing has happened. Because as long as they think that it's normal and okay to hurt other people the way that they do, but harmful and deviant just for me to exist, they are dangerous.

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~ Fox | Gem | Rei ~

We tell stories, paint minis, collect identity words, and share them all with our readers. If something we write helps you, let us know.

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