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I’ve gone legit!

Hello everyone,

I’m afraid I’ve been neglecting you lately, but I promise I have good reasons. During the last month I’ve been applying to study an M.A, I’ve been to Croatia annnd I’ve created a legit blog with my very own domain! I got my domain from biz.nf which gives you your own WordPress domain for free!
web hosting
http://docs.biz.nf/set_aid.php?aid=MTkyMzI3MjMyNzI0MjI=

I’m still going to post on this blog, but if you have a moment it would be amazing if you could go and check out my new blog and maybe save it to your favorites. It is primarily a travel blog with better versions of my old entries, and it will soon be stuffed full of new content including details of my trips to Crete, France, Spain, Portugal, and Croatia. I’m also going to a few other places before uni starts so I’m planning on filling it full of interesting and exciting things :).

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Why America Should Legalise drugs (non-stoner reasons).

https://mcxv.com/real-reason-drugs-legalised-america-no-dont-just-want-get-high/ 

Happy belated 420 everyone.

I just wrote an article about why America should legalise drugs. Most of the reasons people tend to come up with is a person’s rights over their own body, the ridiculousness of criminalising something that only ‘harms’ yourself, and the relative safety regarding certain illegal substances (like marijuana) as opposed to legal substances (like alcohol).

These are all very true, but I thought I would try and get away from the personal reasons and focus on how legalising drugs could have huge positive ramifications on America’s messed up prison system, disproportionate representation of African Americans in American prisons, the fact that the punishment often does not fit the crime, how legalising drugs could help with overcrowding, how many Americans are actually in jail because of drug-related offences etc.

I am not from America. I should also admit that I have not been to America so a lot of my information comes from articles, statistics and Orange Is The New Black. If anyone is from the states and/or knows about the prison system and has any comments on my article or the issues relating to drugs, racism, prisons and crime please let me know!

Check out my article by clicking here or going to https://mcxv.com/real-reason-drugs-legalised-america-no-dont-just-want-get-high/ 

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#OscarsSoWhite and what else we can do about it

Read my article about #OscarsSoWhite here.

When people talk about #OscarsSoWhite I feel like they are missing a vital point. We need more diverse staff at all levels of the industry i.e in directing, writing, producing and casting as well as acting because without it we miss out on a lot of talent which we the audience could benefit from, but this isn’t the only way we can try and get more diverse actors in the short term. A lot of main and secondary characters are ‘racially neutral’ i.e their race hasn’t been specified and yet for some reason unless we are specifically told otherwise we assume that all these characters are white.

I remember the recent uproar when the part of Hermione Granger in ‘The Cursed Child’ was given to a black woman and a bunch of people  just couldn’t understand why this Hermione was black when the character was meant to be white. But was she meant to be white? Did J.K.Rowling specify her race? As far as I can recall from the books Hermione’s specific skin colour is not mentioned (although we know she has bushy hair) and so we didn’t actually know whether she was meant to be white or not. We just assumed.

The recent talk (however real it actually was) of having a black James Bond is another important point because there really isn’t any reason Bond couldn’t be black. The people who talk about the ‘historical accuracy’ of Bond’s race seem to forget that in the 1950s we didn’t have smart phones, lap tops or tablets. We didn’t have many of the fancy tech gadgets they use for the films now, hell we still haven’t invented some of the things they show in those films. So although it’s perfectly true that a historically accurate James Bond probably couldn’t be black, since when was historical accuracy an issue for the Bond series? James Bond is a timeless character who adapts to the time, fears and current threats the world has. He has no set time, and he needn’t have a set race either.

I believe that true equality in mainstream film won’t just come from hiring more diverse writers and hoping they write about more non-white characters (although that is a big part of it). Real equality can only come when we stop assuming everyone is white unless stated otherwise, when we stop limiting talented actors to specific roles. Real equality can only happen when we stop seeing people as representatives or spokes people for their race, gender, sexuality etc and start seeing them as individuals who can play individual parts. Only when we all have the freedom to play a superhero, a villain and a romantic lead without people focusing on “what our character says about our specific group and what kind of role model we are” will we have full equality.

To read my article on Diversity at the Oscars click here now.

http://uk.blastingnews.com/entertainment/2016/10/we-need-more-diversity-at-the-oscars-but-are-we-thinking-about-it-the-right-way-001174171.html

 

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Pedigree Dogs Exposed

Have any of you seen Pedigree Dogs Exposed? For anyone who doesn’t know this was a 2008 documentary that looked at the many health problems that plague pedigree dogs as a result of years of selective breeding for dog shows and a disturbing amount of incest. After reading a recent Guardian article about the health of pugs I was inspired to write something I’ve been meaning to write for over a year, which is an article on pedigree dogs and the issues brought up by the Exposed documentaries. You can read my full article by going here: https://mytrendingstories.com/article/the-truth-about-pedigree-dogs/

Dogs 100 years ago vs dogs today

All images were taken from https://dogbehaviorscience.wordpress.com/2012/09/29/100-years-of-breed-improvement/. To find out more about Pedigree Dogs Exposed and its aftermath refer to Jemima’s blog http://pedigreedogsexposed.blogspot.co.uk/

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Thoughts on victim blaming

As a writer who likes to focus on news/current events, I’ve been a little dubious about delving into feminist discourse and engaging with those ideas. As I don’t personally identify as a feminist (I’ll write more about that in another post) I’ve found discussing the issues that relate to feminism quite difficult because so many people will quickly become offended and angry if you disagree with them, even if you don’t actually disagree with them as much as they think. However, I’ve been thinking and reading about this stuff for a while now and I think it’s time to get involved.

This is the first of a few social issues topics I’m going to be looking into, and for this article, I’m going to be looking at the concept of victim blaming.

Victim blaming

I do believe the victim blaming does happen, but I think there’s a bit more to the concept than we tend to assume. As far as I’ve seen, a lot of people will automatically assume that if you were sexually assaulted you were drunk and provocative, and so some people think that not being drunk and provocative will ensure you’re not sexually harassed. And that’s just not the case.

One time I was coming home on a Sunday evening (around 7pm) after a shift at the Zoo. I was wearing a long red anorak type jumper and jeans, and I was tired and anti social as hell. And these dudes on the bus kept talking to me, and asking me where I was getting off and such, and then they tried to follow me home even though I barely engaged with them and told them multiple times I didn’t want to hang out with them. I’m not saying that is sexual assault because it’s not, but it is a form of harassment, and it’s not pleasant. Harassment happens a lot, and it can happen no matter what you’re wearing. People can also be assaulted in jeans, tracksuits, and conservative clothes.

Because of this, it can get really annoying when people assume every time you’re harassed it’s partly your fault. I understand the frustration behind it, but I do feel that to help people understand this a greater distinction needs to be made between the different situations that sexual harassment or assault could happen. People can be harassed and assaulted when they are drunk and semi-clothed, but that isn’t the only instance where it could happen. It can also happen in broad daylight, or on public transport, or when you are walking home from work. It can happen at random, it can happen to women regardless of their sexual history, and it is often not provoked or encouraged in any way.

I don’t feel the campaigns that went viral depicting acts of everyday sexual harassment went far enough because as far as I saw they didn’t mention young people under the age of 18, who are actually more likely to experience this kind of thing frequently, but I do believe that these campaigns were and are very important, and that is one part of feminism I could definitely get behind.

The backlash against safety precautions

The problem, as far as I can see, is that some people refuse to accept that there can be a difference between harassment or assault that occurs when the victim is drunk, unaware and vulnerable, and that which happens in other situations This difference doesn’t mean that one is worse or more justifiable than the other, but it is just a different discussion.  For the rest of this article, I’m going to to be talking about assaults and crimes as relating to drunk, unaware victims.

There’s been a backlash against so-called victim blaming for quite a long time, and I’ve seen it focus quite a lot on safety adverts and warnings telling girls not to get too drunk and wander off alone. Some people believe this is avoiding the problem, that it doesn’t matter how drunk a girl is because she has a right to do whatever she wants and not have to worry about people taking advantage. Some people say that the focus should be on teaching boys not to rape, not teaching girls how not to be raped. And of course  that’s true. People shouldn’t sexually assault other people, and people shouldn’t rape other people. Period. No ifs no buts.

The unfortunate truth is that some people do sexually harass, assault and even rape other people, and I don’t believe it’s something you can just educate away. I do believe they should include consent and when it is not possible for someone to consent in those obligatory ‘growing up’ classes they have at school. They should also talk about street harassment, and why boys should not harass girls who don’t want to interact with them. You can’t really teach social skills in a classroom, but perhaps some basics in body language and how to tell when someone is interested and when someone doesn’t want to be approached could help.

They should  also talk about male victims in abusive relationships (in both homosexual and heterosexual pairings) and how that does exist because there is still a lot of misunderstanding and understanding about this issue, and I believe they should also educate both men and women about the dangers of getting too drunk. Because when you get really drunk, you are vulnerable. And some people might take advantage of you. Some people might hurt you. You could also hurt yourself.

Rape culture?

Educating people about these issues is important, but I think this idea that you can ‘teach’ people not to be rapists, that all rapists are ‘confused’ as to what constitutes rape and what doesn’t, is quite naive. The consent lessons could help some people, but ultimately we are already taught as individuals within this society that crimes such as rape and sexual assault are bad. ‘Rape culture’ may refer to a society where rape victims find it hard to get justice because people will question their story and then a conviction is hard to come by, but by the reality of the crime, rape is not easy to prove in a lot of cases.

It often happens in secluded places without witnesses, if it is reported a few days, weeks, months or years after the event there will be little or no DNA evidence.  It doesn’t mean rape isn’t a terrible thing and rapists shouldn’t be punished, but by the nature of the crime it is often very hard to achieve a conviction without substantial evidence, whether the judge personally believes the victim or not. A court of law has to remain unbiased until they receive enough evidence to tilt them one way or another whether they want to or not, and if they don’t get that evidence and there isn’t a confession it is very difficult for them to proceed. It is especially hard to make a conviction if the victim was intoxicated and therefore does not have a clear memory of the event, in the same way that it is harder to make a conviction several years after the event when the exact details may not be as clear.

A court of law has to remain unbiased until they receive enough evidence to tilt them one way or another whether they want to or not, and if they don’t get that evidence and there isn’t a confession it is very difficult for them to proceed. It is especially hard to make a conviction if the victim was intoxicated and therefore does not have a clear memory of the event, in the same way that it is harder to make a conviction several years after the event when the exact details may not be as clear.

I’m not saying it’s not a bad thing that so many rapists are never convicted, but I just don’t really know what the courts can change to make things better. They have to remain unbiased until they are given sufficient evidence, and if they don’t get that evidence whether they want to or not they can’t convict based on your version of events alone. I know it’s horrible, but I really don’t know what the solution is.

I have never been a fan of the term ‘rape culture’ because when people use it it seems to encompass anything from cat calling to penetrative rape. Whilst this isn’t always the case, I keep seeing people using examples of street harassment as examples of ‘rape culture’, and that doesn’t sit well. You cannot rape someone with your eyes or with your words. Catcalling and unwanted attention are not pleasant, it can be frightening and it has the potential to turn into an assault, but it in itself is not assault, and it is certainly not rape.

Sexual harassment is not pleasant. At best it is annoying, and at worse it is frightening. But someone trying to talk to you, whistle at you or get your phone number is NOT in the same category as penetrative or enveloping rape. The idea that a guy catcalling you is closely related to rape seems a bit ludicrous to me, and it definitely seems to undermine the experiences of rape survivors.Rape shouldn’t be a buzz word that’s thrown around to identify any form of sexual harassment or unwanted advances. Rape is rape, harassment is harassment. The distinction needs to be made.

You can’t just teach the problem away

It is common knowledge that theft, violence, murder, rape and pedophilia are all bad. We have laws against them, we have news stories about them which condemn the crimes and the perpetrators, and these crimes go against the ethics that most people at least pretend to live by in our society. This does not, however, stop some people from doing any of those things. To explain why any individual let alone multiple individuals murder, rape and abuse children is a job for trained psychologists and even then we may never fully understand, but I doubt the people who committed these heinous crimes wouldn’t have done so had they just had a consent class at a university or school that they may or may not have attended.

That isn’t to say we shouldn’t try, but I think it’s incredibly naive to say “well just teach them not to do bad things, don’t teach us to stop them.”. Because the world isn’t just magically going to ‘become nice’ someday. A lot of people are not going to do these things, but some will, and I don’t know if that will ever change. As we cannot read and police people’s minds, we don’t know what they are thinking. You can’t tell by looking at someone whether they are going to become a murderer, a thief, a child molester or a rapist. You can’t lock someone up before they have committed a crime. So whilst we can and should talk about these issues and spread awareness about them, I don’t think we can ever ‘fix’ the entire population so no one ever does anything terrible to another person.

The importance of safety

Whilst not all sexual assaults happen when women are drunk and unaware, it can happen. It does happen. You should follow simple safety measures when going out, such as not leaving your drink unattended and trying to stay in a group if you’re going to get wasted because it’s safer. It doesn’t mean something will happen to you, and it certainly doesn’t mean it should happen to you. It also doesn’t mean something may not happen to you at another time, in another situation. But whilst you can’t protect yourself from everything, you should at least try to protect yourself where you can, and not put yourself in unnecessary danger regardless of the fact that that danger shouldn’t exist in the first place.

Sexual assault isn’t the only thing that could happen either. If you’re drunk and unaware you’re an easier target for muggings, you might get in a fight, you might lose your belongings and get stranded, and you could also injure yourself. Sexual assault is something you should try to protect yourself against, but it’s not the only thing. To say that women have the right to wander around off their faces at night and not have to take any precautions because nothing should happen to them isn’t that helpful  because of course nothing should happen to them.

Of course it’s the attacker’s fault, not the woman’s. But something could still happen to them. Isn’t it better to not be alone or not be so drunk that you’re totally unaware in that situation? Of course you have the choice and the right to do what you want, but we do not live in a PG-rated violence free Utopia, and until such a fairy tale ending comes about we shouldn’t pretend that we do.

One could use this logic in other situations. What would you do if someone said it was wrong to tell children not to talk to or go off with strangers because the adult shouldn’t harm the child even if the child does engage with them, get into their car or go to their house. And no, of course they shouldn’t harm the child. But they might. Some people would. Of course it’s not a solution to the problem, and of course if something did happen it is never the child’s fault. But you’d still rather not risk anything happening to your child, and that is why you tell them to be careful or you don’t let them walk far on their own. Not because you’d blame them if something did happen to them, but because you want to prevent something happening to them in the first place.

As far as I can see, advising women to take simple safety precautions when they go out drinking isn’t an example of rape culture, it’s sensible advice.  I guess you could argue that it’s sexist to assume that women need to use these precautions when men don’t, and in some ways I’d agree. Men may be less likely (although it’s definitely not impossible) to be sexually assaulted on a night out, but all the rest of the issues above still apply. I’d say the fact women are reportedly more likely to experience sexual violence than men, the fact that women tend to be smaller than men and are perceived to be less physically strong, and the fact that many may perceive them as an ‘easy target’ is why these campaigns tend to focus on women, but maybe we should be targeting men as well.

Conclusion

I do believe a degree of victim-blaming does happen in our society, but I feel our collective efforts are focused on the wrong thing. Statements like “instead of teaching women not to be drunk, let’s teach men not to rape them” are true, but they are also a little pointless because you can’t just teach someone not to be a rapist in the same way you cannot teach someone not to be a murderer or a thief. We should teach consent, we should emphasize the legal implications and as a society we should condemn them, but we can’t assume that everyone who does a bad thing simply ‘needs to be educated’ and that crime will go away. We need to accept that even though we shouldn’t have to, we still need to protect ourselves as much as we can, not just from sexual assault but from all the bad things that people can do to each other.

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Book reviews

You might be wondering what the Book Club and Cheap Book banners are doing on my blog. I write book reviews on a novel blog platform, and these blogs are affiliated with Book Club and the Cheap Book listings. If an author has published a book but they aren’t getting enough recognition, they can pay a small fee to Book Club and in return Book Club will feature their book on The Book Club Reading List. Reviewers like me will then look through the reading lists and select the books we want to review.

Becoming a successful author is one of the hardest things you can try to do. You may have written the greatest book ever, but if it’s not discovered by the right people, it doesn’t get enough publicity and it’s not featured on any ‘best seller’ lists, you still might not get anywhere. It’s a shame because there are some fantastic books out there that people are missing out on simply because they will never see them, but that’s the sad reality of the industry. Book Club probably won’t make these authors into best-sellers, but it will try and find them a larger audience.

I just finished reviewing Leah, a well-written and engaging mystery/horror/romance novel that really should be more popular than it is. I read Leah in a few long sittings because I just couldn’t put it down, and I really wanted to know what happens at the end. The author of Leah is a very talented writer, and I really hope this book gets the recognition it deserves someday. In the mean time all I can do is shameless promote it on my blog, which is precisely what I’m going to do. So please take a look at my review of Leah by going to my book review blog: http://sophestry.novelblogs.com/book-review-leah-by-dana-k-haffar/, and if you’re looking for a new book to fall in love with why not buy Leah on Amazon?

Book Club Reading List

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Interviewing artists: Bryony May Mind Strays

Brighton

Brighton, for those of you who don’t know, is a fabulous seaside city about an hour out of London which is famous for its excellent vegan food (it has more than one vegan pub!), its acceptance of weed, vape shops and harem pants, and its status as one of the most (if not the most) LGBTQ friendly cities in the U.K.

A few weeks ago, I went to Brighton for a beach party in celebration of Trans Pride Day. I met loads of vibrant and colorful characters that day, and one such character was the delectable Bryony May, a Brighton based freelance artist who kindly agreed to be the first interviewee for my new blog series ‘Interviewing Artists’.

Interviewing Artists

This is a new blog series I am starting which will focus on local artists and their work. I’ve always loved art, and  I’ve always known and appreciated people who are artists and who want to make art a full-time career.

It is very hard to live off your art (in the same way it’s very hard to be a full-time actor or writer), and building a reputation and constantly marketing your work can be a full-time job in itself. I want to introduce lesser-known but no less talented artists to a wider audience, and I want to help promote them in any way I can.

Interviewing artists will start with a brief description of the artist and their work, followed by an interview with the artist which explores their inspiration and themes, and finally the artist will explain the thought, themes and inspiration behind some of their work.

Artist profile: Bryony May

young dude
Image: Young Dude by Bryony May

Bryony May is a full-time freelance artist who uses their art to explore the themes of relationships, abuse, and mental illness.  You can find Bryony on Facebook and Etsy as Bryony May Mind Strays.

Bryony is a self-employed full-time artist. They run every aspect of their art business themselves, from the marketing to postage and packaging. Every piece of art they make is unique and one-of-a-kind. If you want to buy any of the art featured in this post, please go to Bryony’s Etsy account to find out more.

Bryony is agender and prefers gender neutral pronouns, hence why I am referring to them as ‘they’, ‘them’ or ‘their’.

Interview 

You say on your Facebook page that your art is influenced by mental illness, relationships, and abuse. If possible could you expand on that and on what you are hoping to achieve with your art?

fAs someone who is affected by mental illness (currently depression and anxiety, in my past, borderline personality disorder) and someone who has lived through multiple abusive relationships and who is always exploring how to create new healthier connections with people, I feel these are the subjects I can portray most knowledgably that I am passionate about in my own life. I hope to provide an insight into how it feels to be affected by these issues,and to show solidarity with those who’ve been affected similarly, to help those feeling isolated by their emotions to feel understood and respected.

How do you think art can be used in the fight for equality?

Soon I will be producing more work alongside my current collection addressing mental illness and abuse, that addresses sexism, homophobia,and transphobia, as these are also issues I feel confident commenting on as I am an agender pansexual, and sexism affects everyone. I want my work to be worn on walls as a badge of honour for a person proud to be surviving in this world as a member of an oppressed group, or as a badge of empathy for a person or company who wishes to show solidarity with oppressed groups.

Are you having much success working as an independent artist? What kind of advice would you give to fellow artists in regards to making money and promoting yourself?

It’s hard work, I look forward to the day I make enough to live off, I am currently living off a finite supply of savings, some months I’ll sell 4 or 5 works, some I won’t sell any. I keep with it because I’m passionate about it, its what I’m good at, its what I enjoy and Its really important to me.
 
painMy advice is if your aim is to make money, do something else, if you feel how I do, and you are passionate about your work, get to it! make and make and make and once you have a body of work you feel says what you want it to get an Etsy account, if you’re lucky enough to have or know someone who has web development skills get your own website made and advertise the heck outa it! I have no budget for advertisement so most people find out about my work through me shouting about it on social media, I run so many accounts its hard to keep track of them all myself, I have Facebook as my main one where I share everything then I post my art with links on Instagram and tumblr and pinterest and I might be setting up a twitter account soon, its a lot, but its important to have a big web presence when you can’t afford a physical venue or advertisement.

And make sure you take care of yourself, its not going to pick up straight away, it takes time, it took me well over a year of trying this to sell my first piece and that was to a friend, don’t be disheartened and keep going, and remember to take time off, when you’re in charge of when you work it can be really hard to remember you deserve and need a break from time to time, so don’t forget to let yourself relax now and then, if you’re stressed out your work will suffer anyway so if not for yourself do it for that.

What do you hope to have achieved in 10 years time?

il_570xN.1024502466_k1ayI’d really like to be living off my art by then, I’d like my work to be better known, but I’d also not want to be famous myself ever, I’m not the important bit of what I do.
I’d like to collaborate with artists who are familiar with other important subjects that I feel need addressing but that don’t directly affect me, such as racism, and mental illnesses and disorders I’ve never had.
I have an idea for a performance piece I’d like to create, but it involves a venue and a lot of paint, these things cost money I don’t have, but perhaps sometime in the next 10 years I will, fingers crossed.

Analysis

I tore

I Tore Myself Open to Smile for You

All my work is open to the interpretation of the viewer, the meaning I intended to illustrate when I created it is not necessarily the “right” way to view it, I’ll provide it here for context but I encourage you to make up your own mind before reading what I think about it. one of my favourite parts of being an artist is hearing how all the differing perspectives people have effect what they see in my work, I love how it can mean so many different things to so many different people and I never want to tell anyone how it “should” be viewed, so here I simply offer just another perspective.

To create this piece I first drew a rough outline of what the face should look like in pencil then with fine liner I picked out details like the teeth nose and eyes, then I used Ink pencils to add a light skin tone to the face and colour to the eyes, then to illustrate the effect of it being tear stained I dripped water onto the light skin tone areas of ink pencil to cause it to bleed and pool. Then with candle wax I traced the rough outline of the face with a manic sort of line to express the instability of the figure, then letting the wax resist the black ink I filled in the background, using an old toothbrush to scratch more depth into the face with the same ink. Then I dripped red ink around the mouth cavity to emphasise the ripping open of the figure and dripped diluted blue ink from the left eye subtly dripping down through the whole image all the way to the bottom signifying further the pain the figure is in. then finally, I literally tore at the figure splitting the face in half and tearing into the pained creases of the eyes.

Then with candle wax I traced the rough outline of the face with a manic sort of line to express the instability of the figure, then letting the wax resist the black ink I filled in the background, using an old toothbrush to scratch more depth into the face with the same ink. Then I dripped red ink around the mouth cavity to emphasise the ripping open of the figure and dripped diluted blue ink from the left eye subtly dripping down through the whole image all the way to the bottom signifying further the pain the figure is in. then finally, I literally tore at the figure splitting the face in half and tearing into the pained creases of the eyes.

This piece aims to illustrate the pain in concealing my true emotions in previous relationships where I was afraid they would leave me or be over burdened should I express my troubles to them so I would force a fake smile and pretend everything was ok for their benefit resulting only in my own pain growing and a feeling of irrational bitterness towards them as if they had forced me to act this way to appease them when the whole time it was my choice, we would have both benefited from me being more open, but I was still recoiling from having offered up too much of myself in the past, still trying to find the mid ground where I could be open without handing over responsibility, and over shooting.

falling

Falling

This piece was created by hand drawing the figures in pencil, colouring the bottom figure in with black ink and cutting them out together and placing them on a tea stained ground.

This piece was created with the intention of illustrating how I’ve experienced the feeling of falling in love when suffering from depression and a feeling of dependence, an uneasy almost literal falling into the other person, letting them engulf me and using them as a distraction from and protection against the incoming ground, placing myself and all my insecurities in their arms to protect, leaving my responsibility to take care of myself with them, without the headspace to consider how that might effect them as they eventually, inevitably, impact with the ground and disperse from my life, my self worth with them, until I learn to love myself again.

what

What Do I Do With This

This piece was created by painting the paper with a blood red ink ground then painting over that with layers of white wall paint, drawing the hands in black fine liner once the right shade of pink is accomplished and then painting further layers of the white wall paint around the hands, then I carved through the layers with a scalpel to create the heart, and painted further blood red ink on the back to let it bleed through the now weakened area where I carved the heart.

I intended this work to Illustrate how I felt when I was in a relationship where my partner was dependant on me and had carved themselves into my life, they cut away at me, carved their heart into me, attached themselves, I couldn’t escape for fear they would commit suicide if they found themselves without me, I felt trapped by this overwhelming responsibility over this other person who I did care deeply about but could not help, it was like their heart bled through me, they were very unwell and I put them before myself very often as I felt my struggles were lesser than theirs and as such I felt they should have my priority, they kept handing me more and more of their struggles and I just, didn’t know what to do with them, it hurt to hold them, it hurt not to be able to help as they thought I could, and it cut into me, so much so that this person become the only partner I’ve ever dumped, it still hurts that I had to do that, but it was apparent that at best I wasn’t helping and at worst, no matter how they thought otherwise, I was hurting them, and myself, by staying.

If you want to learn more about Bryony or you would like to buy any of the pieces featured in this article, please go to Bryony’s Etsy account or their Facebok page.

Check back soon for more art, recipes, news and general musings about life. Also remember to take a look at my book review website and the cover reveal for the next book on my reading list, Leah by Dana Haffar.