Tuesday, 2 September 2014

On Being Manic Pixie Dream Grrl'd

You are not the first to say I changed your life, to imagine that I exist solely to challenge those around me. As if I don't have my own life to live. Imagine how it must be constantly living that challenge, to know that your push and pull can eventually drive those you love away. They tire of your mental health, they tire of looking after you, they tire of the challenge and want for something quieter.

I self manage in an effort to stay off medication (I'm largely treatment resistant anyway) so that the shorter life I will live will be as meaningful and wonderful to me as possible. This self management means constantly being selfish, constantly having to put myself first so that I can live rather than survive. My very disinterest these days in a normal life (let's face it, anyone who knows me since childhood knows that was never really me) is exactly what drives people to manic pixie dream grrl me.

But that very trope is dehumanising at its core. It makes you into a character in a movie and nothing else. It strips you of being anything deeper than fun, quirky and colourful. But I am more than those things, I am strong & assertive. I am many character traits that were they in a man they would be lauded rather than shamed. I will not be made to apologise for who I am, you do not know what it took for me to get here.

I do not exist as a footnote in men's lives so they can reach their goals at the expense of my humanity.

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