Thursday, July 31, 2014

Why I Use Trigger Warnings

I am very careful about trigger warnings. I warn for just about anything I can think of. You know why?

Because I don't want to trigger people. I don't get what's so hard to understand about this. And yet people keep sending me Tumblr messages and writing articles saying whyyyyyyyy should there be all these trigger warnings?

The real question is whyyyyyyyyy SHOULDN'T THERE BE?

Why would you not try to protect people who have suffered trauma from being triggered by what you say? Why wouldn't you want to avoid unnecessarily hurting someone?

Haven't you ever been close to someone who went through a breakup or suffered a loss? During that grieving process, weren't you careful to avoid speaking the name of the person who died/dumped them because you didn't want to bring up painful memories, because you care about them and don't want them to hurt any more then they have to?

This is the same fucking thing, only instead of grief, it's trauma. Which just means that the reaction to reminders of the event can last a lot longer and be a lot more intense. Panic attacks, visceral flashbacks, subsequent depression, etc. You really want to be responsible for that? You really want to write think pieces online trying to convince other people to be responsible for that?

If you think people with triggers should just stay offline, then fuck you. They already went through a horrific trauma, you want to deny them the entire Internet so that you don't have to feel bad about not taking two seconds to post trigger warnings?

If you think people with triggers need to be exposed to the things that trigger them because it will help them somehow, then fuck you. Are you a mental health professional? Obviously not, because anyone who'd studied psychology knows that the key to exposure therapy is doing it in a safe, controlled environment under the supervision and instruction of a trained therapist. YOUR BLOG IS NOT A SAFE CONTROLLED ENVIRONMENT AND YOU'VE GOT NO QUALIFICATIONS. STOP.

If you think posting trigger warnings restricts free speech somehow, then fuck you. There's no law about it. I'm doing it of my free will.

If you think posting trigger warnings will prevent people from reading things they should read, then fuck you. Trigger warnings often don't deter people from reading something, but allows them to mentally prepare themselves before they read it so that they're not caught off guard. And if they don't want to read something I write because of a trigger warning, fine. That's 100% their choice and I'm happy to give them the information necessary to make that choice. Also, no one needs to read any one piece of literature to have a full life, least of all your shitty favorites that were all written by middle to upper class white cishet men.

If you think posting trigger warnings is pointless because anyone can potentially associate anything with trauma, then fuck you. If someone asks me to post a warning for something specific, I will. For now, I do everything I can think of including those that people have asked for in the past. It still doesn't take me very long and it protects a lot more people than it would if I posted no warnings.

If you think posting trigger warnings is somehow going to make people "weak," then FUCK YOU. PEOPLE WHO HAVE SURVIVED SEVERE TRAUMA ARE STRONGER THAN YOU. THEY HAVE TO LIVE WITH IT EVERY DAY. YOU CAN'T EVEN BE FUCKED TO TAKE FIVE SECONDS TO HELP THEM OUT. WHY ARE YOU SO WEAK THAT YOU CAN'T DEAL WITH THE THOUGHT THAT SOME PEOPLE MIGHT NEED THIS HELP AND HAVE TO WHINE ABOUT IT LIKE AN OVERGROWN BABY. THAT IS SUPER WEAK.

That is why I post trigger warnings. Do not ask about them or complain about them to me again.

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