identity

Move over "spinster": this old term for an unmarried woman is bad-ass and inspiring all kinds of new terms

Move over “spinster”: this old term for an unmarried woman is bad-ass

Back when I was buying a condo as an unmarried woman about a decade back, I was confronted with the term “spinster” in the legal documentation declaring that I *gasp* had no husband in the process of buying this home. Get your fainting couches ready. I think it would have been far less jarring had I been confronted with the term THORNBACK, though. What’s a thornback you ask? Come with me on this journey of fantastic singlehood, friends…

In which I tell conservatives I understand them because I used to be one

In which I tell conservatives I understand them because I used to be one

If I can say anything at this bleak hour, with the world splitting at its seams, it’s this: conservatives, I understand you. It may not be something you expect to hear from a liberal, but I do. I understand you. I understand you because I used to be you. Long ago, in the era of Slick Willy and the dawn of explicit labels on music CDs, I was conservative, too. I stood up for men first, considered money an inalienable right, questioned immigration, and thought abortion was the greatest moral crisis facing our lives…

Requiem for Tumblr: pouring one out for a fat-positive space for nudes

Requiem for Tumblr: pouring one out for a fat-positive space for nudes

Besides being a huge blow to sex workers and LGBTQ people, Tumblr’s recent decision to ban adult content from its platform is a misguided form of censorship that will remove an outlet of self-expression for those who fall outside of typical Western beauty standards. There was something else, though, and that something is what I and I think many other people will miss most now that Tumblr has moved to ban adult content from its site…

Will Tumblr's adult content ban be catastrophic for sex work and queer communities? Tumblr adult content ban

Will Tumblr’s adult content ban be catastrophic for sex work and queer communities?

Tumblr announced that they are going scorched earth with pornographic content by removing it from the site entirely. Tumblr’s decision feels very much like a condemnation of sex work and pornography as a whole, and specifically ends up targeting marginalized groups who rely on the site in a number of ways. For those of us who don’t have a problem with safe, consensual sex work, this has the appearance of making it unnecessarily harder for folks to make a living online. For others, it feels like the only way to save the children (why won’t somebody think of the children?!).

Wait, DON'T smash the patriarchy -- its pieces are seeds

Wait, DON’T smash the patriarchy — its pieces are seeds

Recently I’ve become really uncomfortable with the term “smashing the patriarchy.” Not in the comfort-zone-pushing way, but in the misaligned-self-betrayal way. So I’ve stopped using it. Because you know who runs around smashing shit?

The patriarchy. If we look seriously at the situation, I think we find that to “smash” the patriarchy is to recreate it.

Name change regret: I changed my last name and now I regret it. What should I do?

I changed my last name and now I regret it. What should I do?

When I got married, I didn’t want to keep my name because I grew up with an abusive father. My husband is deeply connected to his last name and didn’t want to change, so I took his name. Now I hate that I changed my name because I associate it with his parents, and they aren’t very good people, and I feel stuck. Any advice?