How do you cope with the anger when dealing with issues and idiots?

(67 Posts)
BigButtons Wed 16-Jun-21 07:23:49

I have recently become more actively involved in reading threads and articles and having active discussions on women’s issues and the whole GC issue.
I still don’t understand a lot of the terminology and am confused by many of the laws and arguments on here and elsewhere.
I find it very hard to put my thoughts into words as I just feel so angry about the whole thing; the erosion of women, appropriation, trans rights, all of it.
I really want to be become better informed, I want to be able to hold my own in discussions . It all makes me so angry though that I find I just get emotional rather than pouring measures arguments forward.
How do you deal with that?
Is anger a part of fighting this fight?

OP’s posts: |
NonnyMouse1337 Wed 16-Jun-21 07:30:53

I was a complete vortex of rage, sadness and despair when I first started learning about all this stuff a few years ago. I'd burst into tears because I was so angry and upset that I couldn't actually verbalise it all and it would tumble out as an emotional response.

I still hold on to that anger. But it is more deep and ice cold now. And I get involved in various projects. Channel the rage to actions - it's really useful.

BigButtons Wed 16-Jun-21 07:32:44

@NonnyMouse1337 that’s helpful thank you. Anger is needed of course but it has to be directed effectively. Atm I just sound like an idiot who can’t speak.
I am have been asked if I would like to join a local GC group and will do that so that should help.

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ThumbWitchesAbroad Wed 16-Jun-21 07:36:02

Yes, join more groups - it helps because there is a wider range of information and opinion, and also you find out more about the people who are trying to uphold women's rights, and what they're doing, which can allow you to maybe get more personally involved if you want to.
That helps to alleviate the rage, I find, as a lot of the rage comes from a feeling of impotence, that this is happening TO you and you can't do anything about it.

Failing that - walk away from the social media for a bit, because everyone needs time away to recharge and re-set, so that you can go back calmer.

NonnyMouse1337 Wed 16-Jun-21 07:38:38

That helps to alleviate the rage, I find, as a lot of the rage comes from a feeling of impotence, that this is happening TO you and you can't do anything about it.

Yes! It is the feeling of impotence that is the worst.

OhHolyJesus Wed 16-Jun-21 07:38:38

I also channel the rage for letters, complaints and consultations.

You might find some useful stuff here

Break it down for me? http://www.mumsnet.com/Talk/womens_rights/3145470-Break-it-down-for-me

I've developed a tolerance and found ways to rise above and ignore (or 'grey rock') the nonsense and focus on posters like yourself who are new to this, learning and open minded and the threads that I'm truly interested in.

I think it can take a while to process and find your own genuine position on any topic that's new and you can be angry and emotional in that process. Focus on your own thoughts and ignore the trolls. They are not worth the time.

BigButtons Wed 16-Jun-21 08:30:48

Thank you so much- that thread looks really useful.
A week ago I was involved in a Facebook altercation with a stupid man who was insisting that I was cis and insisting that I recognised trans women as women. I refused to do so and of course got angrier than I should have done.
I will have to learn when to challenge he and when to walk away.

OP’s posts: |

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LizzieSiddal Wed 16-Jun-21 08:35:43

When I first became aware of this issue, like others I was incandescent with rage, had sleepless nights and found it very difficult to have “calm discussions” with people. Watching women like Julie Bindel, Joanna Cherry, staying so calm, in the face of attacks, lies, insults and frankly stupid questions, has had a huge influence on me, they are great role models.

I should add there are many, many women who over the past few years have shown grace, patience and intelligence in the public eye. Thank you to them, you are all Sheros.

AlfonsoTheMango Wed 16-Jun-21 08:42:13

I support people whose views I agree with.

McDuffy Wed 16-Jun-21 08:43:46

My best mate at work lets me rant to him and I find it useful to have an ally. He's a covert ally as he thinks a moderate position is more productive in the longer term, whereas I get trembly, shouty and therefore put in a category that I don't want to be in grin
I donate, I sign petitions and I channel the rage where I can

Lessthanaballpark Wed 16-Jun-21 08:47:08

I watched an excellent video (recommended here) on the topic which I intend to use in any debates. I will try to summarise:

The crux of the issue is not about denying trans rights or even about challenging the validity of gender-identity.

It’s about how we want to organise society; whether we want to organise society around gender-identity or around biological sex.

Organising it around biological sex recognises the physical differences between men and women which underpin the difficulties that women face.

Organising it around gender-identity raises safeguarding issues which would undermine the progress that women have made in tackling those difficulties. It’s not even about trans but about safe-guarding women.

NecessaryScene Wed 16-Jun-21 08:52:36

Many find a stock of stickers and ribbons useful. You can go out for a brisk bit of decorating around town.

Lessthanaballpark Wed 16-Jun-21 08:52:44

To clarify: It’s about safe-guarding women not necessarily with respect to transpeople but with respect to a system (self-id) that is easily open to abuse

Shedbuilder Wed 16-Jun-21 09:04:30

Another great thing about joining a GC campaigning group is that you look around at the other intelligent, reasonable people you're involved with and and know for certain that it's not you who's that's crazy/ evil/ unreasonable/ right-wing/ ultra-religious or whatever the current insult is.

I spent years wondering whether I was the unreasonable one and whether I was going mad. Meeting others who felt the same was hugely reassuring.

Bunshaped Wed 16-Jun-21 09:14:30

I tend to have these discussions in real life rather than online, but the idiot arguments are the same.

I used to feel so frustrated and ragey about it all (still do) but I found the following helps:

Read loads on these issues (especially from links on here) and solidify your argument. Be open to debate but be sure of your position and why.

Keep calm and ask for evidence from the other person to back up their claims, real evidence not bloody Tiktok.

Don't be rushed into making a point.

I am massively impressed by so many of the posters on here who remain calm and rational in the face of stupidity.

I agree with this from a PP:
I think it can take a while to process and find your own genuine position on any topic that's new and you can be angry and emotional in that process.

Bunshaped Wed 16-Jun-21 09:18:59

I am have been asked if I would like to join a local GC group and will do that so that should help.

Wow, I'd love to have one of those locally!

quixote9 Wed 16-Jun-21 09:25:50

I'm with you, OP. I've been at this for years and still can't talk to idiots without starting to thump the (imaginary) podium and making it obvious that they're idiots. Not the best way to convince anyone confused .

I hope you find that you're a faster learner than I am grin .

TooYoungToNotice Wed 16-Jun-21 12:41:43

I'm like quixote9, whilst I've been reading about the issues for a good while now, I find it very difficult to deal with the anger it provokes in me.

To be honest, the vast, vast majority of people I've spoken to in real life have agreed with the CG position without hesitation.

I do have an old friend who is supposed to be clever (and is indeed doing a higher degree) tell me that she wasn't comfortable with my position, that she values men enough to stand up for their rights (not sure why she doesn't value women enough) and that self ID was fine, and it was ok to let male bodied people into single sex women's spaces because 'they have to go somewhere '.

There are so many things I could have rebutted her little tantrum with thanks to the many brilliant posters on Mumsnet and other reading, however I was speechless with rage. Not a word would come. Probably a good job as it could have simply been an incoherent scream of barely stifled outrage at the injustice women face and of her collusion in it.

I hope one day to be able to discuss the topic without the red mist descending but it's certainly going to take more time.

And if that particular friend mentions Butler once more then God help me.

BigButtons Wed 16-Jun-21 12:54:56

@TooYoungToNotice I feel the same.I am trying to explain all this to me other half. He finds it hard to comprehend I guess because he’s male? I have take. To reading out posts on this section. When he can’t get it it forces me to explain what i understand what I’m reading which turn is helping me to consolidate my own thoughts.

OP’s posts: |
Waitwhat23 Wed 16-Jun-21 13:09:31

I assuage my rage by stickering, ribboning, doing slates, signing petitions, writing to my MSP's, buying products and services from people and companies who support women's rights. I felt I was shouting into the void a bit until recently until I realised that a house in my village has recently festooned the trees in their garden with suffragette ribbons which made me feel less like I was shaking my fist at the clouds!

In terms of talking to people, I find that it's just too big an issue to jump into - where do you start? I usually ask a question which is clear and concise - 'are you aware of the recent MOJ hearing regarding women being raped in prisons by convicted sex offenders?' to get to the heart of the issue and without getting bogged down in the inevitable toilet discussion.

JediGnot Wed 16-Jun-21 14:25:10

I think the rage is similar to the rage that an atheist has when asked to prove god doesn't exist by a religious fanatic.

It is the rage you'd get if you were asked whether right handed people are more or likely to use their right hand when writing, compared to left handed people, only to be laughed at because you were unable to find a peer reviewed study to justify your position.

To a very large extent I think talking is almost pointless. I'd like to think that a sensible way forward would be for both sides to ask the other side to watch a video (GC might like to use the recent "The State Media" vid from youtube) and say "that's my position, where did that video err in fact, and what views expressed do you disagree with and why?"

RoyalCorgi Wed 16-Jun-21 15:01:59

It's very hard online. I feel in a state of rage most of the time.

I think if you find yourself about to call someone a "fucking moron", stop, step back and think. It can be worth having a few well-rehearsed lines that express clearly, but not in angry terms, what your position is.
And then just use them time and again.

Asking questions rather than making outright statements is useful, e.g. "How do you define woman?" "What is it about JK Rowling's essay that you find 'transphobic'?" Do you think this person [pic of Karen White, Barbie Kardashian, Jessica Yaniv or multiple others] is a woman?"

The Staniland question is a good one to use: "Do you believe that male-sexed people should have the right to undress and shower in a communal changing room with women and girls?"

TooYoungToNotice Wed 16-Jun-21 15:40:45

RoyalCorgi I think the Staniland question is so very pertinent. It brings the argument down to brass tacks. Its all very well to dress the argument up in intellectual niceties, but at the end of the day the question is, do you think it is okay for women and girls to be confronted by male bodies in single sex spaces. That is the gritty reality.

I must try and keep it in mind for conversation purposes.

BigButtons Wed 16-Jun-21 15:46:00

I am glad I am not alone with the rage but also sad that the rage has to be there. if I had used the question "Do you believe that male-sexed people should have the right to undress and shower in a communal changing room with women and girls?" in my online 'discussion' last week I know the answer would have been:
that anyone who chooses to identify as female is female regardless their biological sex therefore any male who says they are female has the right to women's spaces.
How do you deal with that kind of response?
That is the kind of shittery that I can't find an answer for.

OP’s posts: |
Leafstamp Wed 16-Jun-21 16:06:52

@BigButtons you might also find these two threads useful:

www.mumsnet.com/Talk/womens_rights/4223539-Self-care-for-feminists

www.mumsnet.com/Talk/womens_rights/4191733-Daily-acts-of-feminism-a-thread-for-ideas

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