UK: My First Bra, and Parental Neglect

It is only years later when I thought about this and how my mother neglected me when I needed my first bra.

Clearly, any ordinary responsible mother would have noticed. But, I had a Narcissist Mother, so I was neglected on something so basic.

I had to get my own First Bra from a mail order catalogue. It was a really boring AA one, but it did the job and I felt a bit grown up. I used my money that I earned through working with hores to get it. I had no real idea of what to get. There was no internet around. I was too embarrassed to ask my mother ti take for bra shopping, and I had now idea of bra fitting. She wasn’t a particularly approachable person and always seemed busy. I had no advice too. was supposed to figure it out for myself. Maybe she didn’t want me to grow up in case she will feel threatened or that she could not dominate me anymore. I don’t have a relationship with her right now, so I don’t know.

Looking back, this was a sign of neglect. Teachers should have spotted this too, but this was in the 70s.

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Staff should be paid for after hours celebratory events

In the UK, from my own experience, organisations, both business and charities are reducing employees work/life balance by having work-related events held at a pub, normally drinking after work. Some of these events can last hours and as far as I am concerned, staff are not even getting paid for them.

Many families are having partners who are working long hours and some parents and non parents alike, are going to after work drinks, and not just on Fridays but throughout the week too. All this adds up to a poor work/life balance.

It is good to have a celebration every now and then, but when it is work related, staff should be paid for it. Organisations need to recognise that staff have a home to go to as well.

Charlie Gard: Thanks to Great Ormond Hospital

I sent a postcard to Great Ormond Children’s Hospital to thank them for all their hard work, often working very long hours helping all the children at the hospital and keeping their dignity and professionalis in trying months.

It was shocking to hear of protests outside the hospital and of all the abuse they they have been receiving, so much so that the hospital has had to contact the police. Staff are busy and stressed enough as it is, just doing their normal job, without the circus adding to it all. They were not respected at the time, and they are experts in their field. Charlie should die with dignity, but it has been a horrible, media circus and didn’t really go anywhere.

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If you would like to donate to the Great Ormond Street Hospital, and support their charity, the link is here http://www.gosh.org/

UK: The ‘Pressure’ on Women to be Bleached Blonde

Ok, ok, I was one once. The ‘pressure’ got to me too. It was all in the magazines and on TV, movies etc. It was ‘wrong’ to have your own hair colour.

I tell you what, I didn’t like being bleached blonde after a while, and nor did my hairdresser who moaned about my split ends and thinning hair which became ‘brassy’ over time.

For a time, it was ‘ok’ but as years went by, I recognised that people treated me as ‘less’ and I got patronised and I even had women being ‘jealous of me’. Men definitely changed and treated me as a woman that could be ‘dominated’ or ‘ignored’ my voice. At the time, I didn’t always realise this but over time I did.

It got to stage that I got sick of being ‘someone else’, ignored and patronised, and I didn’t want my hair, already thinning, being destroyed to bits. I now embrace a natural, shiny, healthy and authentic look, and I love it. My hair is mine, unique and it doesn’t look like everyone else’s. And, if I carried on putting this nuclear colouring, I would not have any hair left. When you get older, it is normal to have thinning hair, let’s not make this happen even quicker!

I was at a café today in Kent and I noticed that all the women had ‘bleached blonde’ bobs, like some kind of clones. I have never seen so many in one café. They looked unconfident. Would they go back to being brunette? Probably not. I suppose at the time, they thought the bleached blonde looked nice, it covers their natural hair and grays, but when you see everyone in your cafe friend group looking all the same, it is kind of weird. It is like stepping in some horror film actually.

They were clearly terrified of, dare we say it, looking older. It was weird, you could hardly tell them apart. Maybe they’re only friends with people who look like them? It seemed all of them felt pressure to have this clone bleached colour and hairstyle. Granted that bobs can be convenient, and I do like them. Maybe they wore bobs as their hair was too unhealthy to grow it longer? I know some people who have really, long, healthy silver hair.

The women were in their forties to sixties. It frightens me that I was once like them, thinking it was cool to be bleached blonde. Maybe they all bought Sainsburys ‘No 4’ box blonde? There must be so much pressure for these middle aged women to be blonde and ‘young looking’, so that perhaps their man doesn’t run off with a younger woman. Listen, you have chosen THE WRONG MAN! I wonder if they feel they are a ‘loser’ if they don’t colour their hair blonde? Some stay chemically bleached well into their OAP years. Catherine Denerve, seems to get away with it, somehow, but her hair must be completely wrecked. Maybe she has a blonde wig, like Barbara Windsor? As more and more women, get cancer, particularly breast cancer in middle age, and companies are secretive about what they really put in their hair colouring, you would think they would want to try and prevent early cancers?

Now I have decided to be an authentic, confident, woman and not give into chemical Blonde Pressure. It saves me money and time too. Ironically, do I have any bleached blonde friends, ha, no but I have a few independently, minded, chemically-free brunette and ‘other’ friends! I get more respect, people listen to me to more, in general, but I look ‘free thinking, confident and independent’ and not chained to the hairdresser for a bleached, blonde, unnatural, and that is the key, look. I have confidence, and the balls, to be myself.

Maggie Thatcher was bottle blonde, but then she was Tory, and you cannot be a ‘successful woman’, unless you are bleached Marilyn Monroe blonde? I wonder where she should be if she was an authentic, chemically- free, brunette?

My heroine is Boudicca, a feisty and powerful, natural red beauty, proud to be herself.

UK: I caught a backstabber, and how I dealt with her

Because of what I have gone through, I am pretty vigilant for these types of people. They picked the wrong person to backstab.

What I have learned about backstabbers is that they can be very passive aggressive, avoidant and hate exposure. They will also have their own ‘support network’ where they get ‘fuel or supply’ and some of them could be your ‘friends’ too, unknowingly.

This woman came into my life a few months ago, and immediately, just by looking at her, I knew she was going to be a problem. It was weird as I could tell by her clothes and her clothes ‘were the opposite to me’. Well, she was supersmart and phoney and I am pretty casual. Even if she wasn’t supersmart the fact that there is a big personality difference, could be a ‘sign’ in anyone’s books. There is a risk of personalities clashing. I felt that I ‘would be in trouble with her’ at some point. Some people don’t like people who are different. Furthermore, she was polite, however, more of a formal polite, she didn’t appear to be relaxed and herself, it was almost as if she could not be herself and authentic at all. My instincts told me ‘that something wasn’t right’ and I couldn’t quite pin it down.

She also kept quite clear from us right from the beginning, although when we did meet, it was me who started the conversations. She was ‘friendly’ but quite ‘guarded’. We always had this phoney friendliness and I never really ‘knew her’, but she always made me feel ‘uncomfortable’. Yes, if she knew I was a Citizen Journo, quite understandly she would feel like that! She kept very polite so as to ‘act properly’ in public.

A couple of months later, she came into the kitchen but didn’t say anything or smile. Once again, I felt as I didn’t exist.

On the same day, I heard a shouting match and with her backstabbling me to her friend. She didn’t know I had heard it, but I was very upset, as I had hoped she was an nice person, although I felt something uncomfortable about her from the moment I met her. Her words hurt. The fact that she was ‘friendly to me’ but backstabbing me was horrible. However, it confirmed what I had thought! in some ways, I am glad this happened, it was not me imagining things.

Now, this is where I had power! She didn’t know that I had heard her.That was great. The flying monkey she was bitching to, didn’t question things.Nothing was done or a few days.

I had to think about what I going to do. Backstabbers like to look good in front of their friends and they hate exposure. So, we decided to ‘open up things’ in a civil way by organising a grown up ‘team meeting’, including the flying monkey,, to discuss ‘any issues’ within the household, with other flatmates. House meetings are great way to air things in a ‘civil way’ and that probably scared her! The fact that she knew that we may have heard her. Something was up in her books but she didn’t know what.

We never did have the team meeting, due to complications, which was annoying, but we opened up ‘dialogue’ that there was a problem within the household as one of the flatmates, ie was very upset to hear someone from the household screaming about them and someone who had been nice to them too. Quite rightly we had to bring it up. The flying monkey, who was there, was shocked that I had heard their conversation and kept on apologising. The woman has not yet apologied and is keeping out of our way, probably very embarrassed, but now the place where she lives, shows about her behaviour. She has been exposed for what she is! The fact that she has not apologised herself, just makes things worse for everyone, including her!

We also added if there is a problem, for them to speak to us directly or at a meeting. We looked really good in the flying monkey’s eyes and he agreed, however, the damage has been done by both of them.

I am leaving their ‘patch’ for a few weeks so she can sort herself out and think about what she had done and if she cannot cope with the ‘exposure’ any longer, she will probably move! In the meantime, we will ‘wait for an apology’, and the longer we don’t have one, the worse the household tension will be. I think we have this backstabber cornered.

If you have experienced ‘catching backstabbers’, let us know how you dealt with them too?

UPDATE: Managed to get the backstabber to apologise! However, it has created a strained relatonship

Neatfreaks are ‘miserable’

I was brought up with ‘neatfreaks’ and it affected me so badly I became anxious and even more untidy.

I kind of ‘gave up’ with all the nagging, and all the things I am supposed to think of. Whatever I would do, would never be good enough to an obsessive neatfreak. Some of the stuff they think of could not even cross an ordinary person’s mind sometimes.

I hate being near people who are ‘neatfreaks’, and you will that you are being ‘watched like a hawk’ in the house all the time. Your home feels like a prison. Sometimes the person in the house, would only talk to you about tidying and cleaning. It was soul destroying being that in narrow, conversational environment. They even hoover in a way that is ‘fast and aggressive’, with the odd passive aggressive ‘tuts’ here and there.

I have a different attitude to them. I was quite relaxed and would tidy up when I was in the mood, had time or would put a little away as soon as possible. Needless to say that my relaxed attitude, made them go ballistic! Some of these ‘neatfreaks’ were cleaning even late at night. Some people literally DO clean up all day, for hours and hours.

I used to see my relatives spending all day cleaning. I thought too much of this was a complete waste of time and they were making themselves ill with the anxiety they brought on themselves. Some of neatfreak ideas caused arguments, not just with me, but with other people in the household too. I have met people who have divorced because of their controlling behaviour, so children suffer too. They were becoming so stressed by dirt and spare socks that they were becoming neurotic.

They often spend money on buying the most toxic chemicals out,and the kitchen cupboards are full of this nasty stuff, and you smell toxic vapour round the house. I am a Apple Cider Vinegar person, so it can be vinegary but at least it is not toxic and does a pretty good job at getting rid of dirt. Ironically, I have less ‘cleaning clutter’ in the house too.

Personally I prefer a bit of balance. It is important that stuff is cleared to avoid tripping over or it becoming a fire hazard, but today’s obsession is getting ridiculous. People are spending too much valuable time cleaning and tidying, that they are having no life and they are looking miserable and their sense of humour goes. I can’t understand that fridges etc have to be clean, and that is fine, but in the house, it can get well over the top. Endless telly ads about cleaning products just adds to the malaise, and pressure from society in general.

For me, their behaviour affected my own wellbeing. It made me feel depressed to be nagged constantly or humiliated by ‘having lectures’. I know they were right in some way, and I can understand that, but as I have said, the obsession with tidying and cleaning all the time , can affect one’s own mental health.

Some kids are unable to have pets because the parents hate dogs as they make the house ‘a mess’ and the kids lose out. Some of my own family was like that. Tidy people are very controlling and untidy people ‘just want a peaceful life’.

We are only on this earth a short time, and tidying and obsessively cleaning, is a waste of our time. For me, I really have to be away from ‘neatfreaks’, they can be miserable, negative and waste too much of their lives cleaning. Some of them have done ‘nothing’ in their lives, compared to some untidy people who would rather spend their time doing something of benefit, to others, say volunteer work, than spending all day cleaning, and possibly having a short life, due to the stress of tidying and cleaning the house all the time. We maybe untidy, but we can be happier, and more relaxed. Some of us like a bit of ‘stuff’ although when it becomes obsessive, like with some hoarders it can be a problem. Some of us suffer from depression or can’t see that well, so cleaning and tidying can be extra difficult.

The most important thing is to be happy, and if that means you have remove yourself from a neatfreak, do so! Don’t let them get you down. It is up to them if they want a miserable life, but you don’t have to!

Another link to a messy person’s blog you may enjoy https://www.bustle.com/articles/66286-11-things-messy-people-will-never-understand-about-neat-freaks

Domestic Abuse: How Neatfreaks affect family https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Opr9v4e2w0w

London: Pride in the Park & Black Pride

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This was held in the Vauxhall Pleasure Gardens, in Lambeth. It was a mix of a Picnic in the Park and Black Pride which was on the other side of the Park.

There were various stalls around and there was also a tent that had a series of talks on various subjects which I enjoyed.

There was a talk on Women, but the two Women presenters failed to turn up which was a bit disappointing. There was also a brief talk about Dr Who, and a black lesbian being in it. Even in the Asexual community, people talk about Dr Who and think Sherlock is Asexual. Dr Who seems to be a popular topic amongst gays and asexuals, some see the popular children’s programme as a ‘benchmark’ of modern society.

Crowds of people were there, and it was a good, friendly atmosphere. It was a nice place to have a festival and there were lots of trees around so we could escape from the heat. There was the usual LGBT music, which, for me was ok, but a bit too loud for me, and I couldn’t hear my friend speak for most of the event but still, it was good fun and some of the stalls were interesting, such as the LGBT history month one, and the one that had big cushions you could lounge around in. There were also medical ones like ones on HIV testing.

There was also a dog show afterwards. Not one of these proper ones, with agility and all that malarky, but more along the lines of the best dressed Camp Dog and what skills your dog could do. For example, two dogs had these skills – eating and just lying down! Everyone laughed.

One of the Camp Dogs, ‘Wan Chan’ being paraded at the Dog Show:

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THIS DOG WAS SO CUTE

It was also good to see people in Black Pride, there were absolutely hundreds of people attending and getting along.

T-Shirt slogans spotted ‘Martha Luther QUEEN’ and badges with ‘Never Kissed a Tory’.

Thanks to the Met Police who helped make it safe and I am glad one of them took off their helmet because it was just too hot.

Asexual Endurance Cyclists exist too #philippayork #Pride2017 #hereiam #Ace #letour

I was pleased that Tour de France champion Robert Millar has come out as transgender and now is to be called Philippa York.

It is sad to see that she can only ‘come out’ after ten years but I am not surprised as the cycling community isn’t that welcoming for minorities. I think she is very brave.

I have heard of a transgender cyclist who cycles round Paddock Wood in Kent reportedly, ‘in her high heels’. So unless this is Philippa, it could be another trans cyclist. And in the cycling world, they ‘do talk about it’.

It was even very hard for me as a ‘minority cycling woman’ ten years ago before the London Olympics but I am glad there are more female cycling clubs now, although I personally prefer the smaller informal ones which have more diversity, rather than the ‘white and conservative’ female cycling clubs. However, I love cycling on my own or with just a good friend. Not all women like to be in groups all the time, I am a bit of an introvert. I am confident cycling on my own and all my endurance events have been on my own too.

I prefer long distance charity cycling myself as you do something that benefits others.

As an British ex-endurance cyclist, and a female. I am happy to raise awareness that there are also Asexual cyclists around too! Yay!

I am also Straight Edge. I find being a non-drinker in the British cycling world, is much harder than being Asexual and a woman in it. Being in a minority, I now tend to do my own thing and I don’t go on the macho cycling forums or clubs. It is a challenge to ‘find a place for me’.

Going back to Asexuality, I do find it difficult wearing tight cycling clothes, such as the cycling shorts. I feel uncomfortable with the leering looks from hetrosexual men and sometimes shouts and honking from motorists and passengers cars. I tend to cover up more now, and if I remember, wear cycling skorts which I think is a lot more comfortable and flattering (for myself!) than nasty tight lycra shorts which attracts the pervy attention.

I am looking forward to going to Pride2017. The Parade is also on my birthday! It should be a lot of fun.

Just a small note to Philippa, you did pick a name that is hard to spell. You won’t believe how many times I have been trying to get it right!

Link to the story: http://www.msn.com/en-gb/sport/news/philippa-york-%E2%80%98i%E2%80%99ve-known-i-was-different-since-i-was-a-five-year-old%E2%80%99/ar-BBDVzZx?li=AAmiR2Z&ocid=spartanntp

More on Asexuality: http://asexuality.org/

Anti-Dangerous Driving Campaign: Booze Driver, Suzanne Barritt from, Westerham, Sevenoaks BANNED!

SEVENOAKS MAGISTRATES COURT

A woman aged 37, from the pretty ‘Winston Churchill’s’ village of Westerham, had been caught drunk driving nearby, in Brasted, by Kent Police with her Landrover Freelander.

She had ploughed into the car in front of her. Her solicitor, weakly, tried to get her off, but the judge saw sense and banned her from driving for 12 months, and also fined her.

In most cases, motorists who crash into the car in front, the blame anyway. A car went into me once in a 20mph in Sevenoaks because a woman drove her car with crap brakes but she got the blame.

Kent Police are currently undergoing a Summer Drink Driving Awareness campaign which was very well publicised. I am happy to report drunk drivers on my blog to raise awareness too.

DO NOT DRINK AND DRIVE, AND WRECK YOUR CAREER TOO. CHOOSE AN ALCOHOL FREE MOCKTAIL OR OTHER ALTERNATIVE. THERE IS NO EXCUSE FOR BEING DRUNK AND IN CHARGE OF A CAR, AND IF YOU HAVE CHILDREN TOO, THERE ARE NO WORDS FOR THIS.

More on the Story: http://www.kentlive.news/this-drink-driver-was-involved-in-a-crash-before-she-was-arrested/story-30425461-detail/story.html

London: How I ‘deal’ with Dirty Smokers

I hate it when smokers drop their fag butts on to the street particularly in London when many people allow them to do it which makes the problem worse.

When I see them chuck their fag butt on the floor (or other kinds of litter), I go up to them immediately, innocently, and say ‘Excuse me, is this yours?’

The picture on their faces is of absolute shock and embarrassment, so much so, they have no words. They are ashamed.

People in this country hate ‘standing out and being humiliated’ in public. They think that chucking litter on the floor is something no one in an ‘anonymous city’ like London will notice and do anything about. Generally I feel safe doing this, as they often do it in public, so if they do something dodgy, other people see and be a witness. They are kind of ‘snookered’.

Chucking litter in London appears to be normal to some people in England. However, me taking on Gandhi’s quote, to be ‘Be the Change’ tends to act differently in cities. I would say, as a tip, I would ‘scarper’ quickly away afterwards, maybe find a side street, or a place with CCTV.

SMOKERS’ FRIENDS

Furthermore, they often do this with their friends who are too scared to stop their friends doing it or not bothered, so, they are in fact enabling the problem. Once again, it is like ‘the elephant in the room’, our culture doesn’t want to ruin the friendship, despite the fact their pretty and popular friend is doing something illegal and disgusting. Friends need to take action, or else, other members of the public will have to ‘their job for them’. It is embarrassing for smokers’ friends too that a random member of the public has to bring it to their attention.

A STORY

Once I was in Peckham in South London, and there were two British middle-aged ladies in the street sitting on a park bench, and one of them, old enough to know better, chucked her fag butt right in front of me onto the ground. I quietly walked up to her in front of her friend and picked up her fag butt and placed it in the bin, which was not far her, and she could see it. It was quite amazing how many people who were caught chucking litter, were women, and perhaps parents and grandmothers too! You wonder if they are tidy in their own house, they probably are!

The silence of my action shocked them. They looked gobsmacked that someone of the street, and a fellow woman, would ‘take their fag butt’ and put it in a bin, it was almost a ‘picture of horror’, but the silence from them was deafening, as they realised I had done nothing wrong, but one of her friends had. They just couldn’t argue!

Showing older people, and women, how to behave in public can be quite fun! If they are going to chuck litter, hopefully they will learn their lesson, though, I expect in the real world, they will wait till there’s no one about next time and then chuck it. They won’t forget their ‘humiliation’. Britons hate to be embarrassed, so you use that as an ‘effective litter deterrent’.

I would say that I hsve never had a problem, as I tend to ‘disarm them’ with polite ness (as best as possible, as they are really anti-social, selfish, dirty and annoying!’