Living with XY Chromosomes

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  • asherasher Shipmate
    Men. Self reliance drivers. Poor self care.

    Inability to ask for help when in personal / health crisis. What's going on here?

    I recognise it in myself. I've got some sh*t going down at present - I know you all do too, life is hard for all of us, not looking for the arm around the shoulder.

    How can we reach out to other men to ask for and offer support?

    Churches are sh*t for this kind of thing.

    Asher
  • My wife often mocks my inability to ask for directions. She is a very mean person, although she has suffered for it. She is mean in a loving way.
  • asher wrote: »
    Men. Self reliance drivers. Poor self care.

    Inability to ask for help when in personal / health crisis. What's going on here?

    I recognise it in myself. I've got some sh*t going down at present - I know you all do too, life is hard for all of us, not looking for the arm around the shoulder.

    How can we reach out to other men to ask for and offer support?

    Churches are sh*t for this kind of thing.

    Asher

    FWIW you are framing this question with - and I’m not looking for support - what was the impulse that led you to include that in the post, it must be part of the answer to the question.
  • Doc Tor wrote: »
    I thought it was obvious by now that no one here is a gender essentialist. And any discussion to that effect would be extraordinary one-sided and pointless.

    "Do our chromosomes dictate our behaviour?"
    "No."
    "That's decided then, carry on."
    If the idea is to understand and have an effect on toxic masculinity, then where behaviour starts is important. There is a difference between controlling an inborn behaviour and discouraging the perpetuation of a learned one.
  • asherasher Shipmate
    asher wrote: »
    Men. Self reliance drivers. Poor self care.

    Inability to ask for help when in personal / health crisis. What's going on here?

    I recognise it in myself. I've got some sh*t going down at present - I know you all do too, life is hard for all of us, not looking for the arm around the shoulder.

    How can we reach out to other men to ask for and offer support?

    Churches are sh*t for this kind of thing.

    Asher

    FWIW you are framing this question with - and I’m not looking for support - what was the impulse that led you to include that in the post, it must be part of the answer to the question.

    Thanks. I paused over that framing.

    I think I included it to be clear that I know that epiphanies is not set up to be a supportive place, and to signal that I am not at particular risk at present.

    Having said that, you may well be onto something! But what to do!

    Asher

  • Doc Tor wrote: »
    I thought it was obvious by now that no one here is a gender essentialist. And any discussion to that effect would be extraordinary one-sided and pointless.

    "Do our chromosomes dictate our behaviour?"
    "No."
    "That's decided then, carry on."

    Oh good. Thanks for getting that out of the way. I wondered if anybody ever would. Can we get on without beating this deceased mule? LB what do you say?
  • LouiseLouise Epiphanies Host
    hosting
    Could posters not junior host and tell other posters where and on what they should be posting please?

    This is quite a wide thread. If people feel frustrated that a particular question is or is not being pursued on this thread they should feel free to start another thread to discuss it rather than trying to direct other posters as to what they should do.
    Thanks
    Louise
    Epiphanies Host

    hosting off
  • I strongly disagree with the train of thought on this thread that says there's no such thing as innate differences between men and women.

    If you look at virtually every other species of animal - and certainly mammal - on the planet, you see definite differences in behavior between male and female. And in the majority of social species there's a notable tendency for males to demonstrate (and enforce) dominance through violence or the threat thereof. From the chest-beating gorilla to the rutting stag, male social power systems are reinforced through contests of strength.

    Is it so crazy to posit that a few hundred thousand years of evolution aren't quite enough to completely eliminate such things from our species? Or that the higher (on average) level of testosterone in men actually has an effect on them? Moreover, and this may well be a controversial question, when such behaviors are so obviously inherent to so many species and can be attributed in no small part to naturally-occurring hormones that must have some evolutionary advantage (or at least no disadvantage) then can we even say that eliminating them is a desirable thing to do?

    On a personal level, I have to say that whenever I hear stuff about how boys should be taught to be less violent/less competitive/etc all I hear is "they should be taught to be more like girls". It feels like just one more piece of the "girls good - boys bad" propaganda that is rife in our society and all adds up in our heads until we end up hating ourselves and lashing out at the world, thus ironically contributing one more piece of evidence in favor of the very attitudes that caused the problem in the first place.
  • GwaiGwai Epiphanies Host
    Who said boys should be less competitive? I don't see that competition and violence are even close to the same thing, and I think you are confounding them. I think competition can be fantastic quite often but violence should be restricted to organized places like the martial arts studio mentioned above.
  • I agree with a lot of what you've said, Marvin. Although I believe nurture plays a big part in a child's development I do see the innate differences and agree that while we may need to teach little boys to "use their words" we don't need to treat them like teacher's biggest problem just because they have more physical energy than the girls. I don't see how they're getting through the day without what we called recess.

    My brother has a condo that overlooks Myrtle Beach and my favorite thing to do while visiting is watch little toddlers experience the ocean for the first time. My sister-in-law chuckled at all my observations because she says she's seen them a hundred times. We're talking about little ones who have just learned to walk and already the boy/girl reactions are so, very different. The boys run into the surf and back and heave toys at it. The little girls look down at the sand and squat to pick up tiny shells. The girls make castles, the boys run them down. No one is teaching them this stuff.
  • DoublethinkDoublethink Shipmate
    edited December 2019
    Praying mantis’ and hyenas may have a different perspective ...
  • @Twilight : 'we may need to teach little boys to "use their words" '

    Sorry, you've lost me here.
  • @Twilight : 'we may need to teach little boys to "use their words" '

    Sorry, you've lost me here.

    It's a thing with elementary school teachers to encourage the children to use their words (talk) when they get angry rather than act out physically (use their little fists or throw the other kid's science project out the window.) As a mother of a little boy I was used to turned over Uncle Wiggly games, but very surprised the first time I babysat a three year old girl who told me (when I cut off her candy binge) that I would not be invited to her party and I had an ugly couch.
  • I strongly disagree with the train of thought on this thread that says there's no such thing as innate differences between men and women.
    No one has said exactly this. Just that the differences mightn't be as quite binary as that.
    As far as species behaviour; in some, the males are dominant, in some the females, in some it is fairly even and in others it depends on the situation.

  • Twilight wrote: »
    No one is teaching them this stuff.
    This is absolutely not true. Children are learning from the moment they are born. Most behaviours are learnt from observation.

  • RooKRooK Admin Emeritus
    I strongly disagree with the train of thought on this thread that says there's no such thing as innate differences between men and women.
    To chime in with others, I don't think there is no innate difference. More that the sexual dimorphism is much smaller in effect than is actually exhibited socially. For example, the average American female is both larger and stronger than the average Japanese male - should they therefore go all hyena/mantis in that interface?
    On a personal level, I have to say that whenever I hear stuff about how boys should be taught to be less violent/less competitive/etc all I hear is "they should be taught to be more like girls". It feels like just one more piece of the "girls good - boys bad" propaganda that is rife in our society and all adds up in our heads until we end up hating ourselves and lashing out at the world, thus ironically contributing one more piece of evidence in favor of the very attitudes that caused the problem in the first place.
    I hear this. But it's definitely true that many of our evolved capabilities are maladaptive to civilized society. We really should use our words more, even though in the past such behaviour has been more-associated with the chattel-sex.
  • Violence is a loaded term. The sort of horse play I was talking about earlier is often exuberant, and can be painful, but I think it's about bonding rather than dominance. Not denying that it can go badly wrong, of course.
  • lilbuddha wrote: »
    Twilight wrote: »
    No one is teaching them this stuff.
    This is absolutely not true. Children are learning from the moment they are born. Most behaviours are learnt from observation.

    Oh yes, I agree in general, but I was specifically talking about one year-old toddlers, first time at the beach. The parents are sunning themselves, none of the women have picked up tiny shells and none of the fathers have thrown toy buckets at the waves. It seemed to be a case of the boys confronting their fear of the ocean's noisy surf with a bit of macho display, and the girls ignoring the ocean for a closer look at the interesting sand while doing a bit of gathering. I'm not sure what it means, but I found it fascinating and delightful.
  • Is it so crazy to posit that a few hundred thousand years of evolution aren't quite enough to completely eliminate such things from our species?

    I am not an evolutionary biologist. But if you are alive today, it means you are descended from a very, very long line of men who didn't die in a fight. That could mean several things: you could take it that you are descended from an uninterrupted line of glorious victors, or that you are more likely to have the craven and the losers in your progenitors in greater numbers, and the occasional warmongerer got lucky and returned home.

    Looking at history and society, there aren't that many times (knowing that there are some) when the conquerors completely eliminated the conquered's men. So, no. I think this is, at best, a red herring. Babies are not only fathered by strong and powerful men who 'win' at some contest.
  • CrœsosCrœsos Shipmate
    edited December 2019
    On a personal level, I have to say that whenever I hear stuff about how boys should be taught to be less violent/less competitive/etc all I hear is "they should be taught to be more like girls".
    lilbuddha wrote: »
    This is absolutely not true. Children are learning from the moment they are born. Most behaviours are learnt from observation.

    I have to agree with lilbuddha more than MtM on this one. There's a tremendous difference in rates of violent crimes and/or sexual assaults between different human societies. The propensity towards violence (or the degree of self-control instilled/inflicted, if you prefer) seems much more likely to be learned behavior than some kind of innate characteristic. Otherwise you'd expect homicide rates (to pick one measure of such things) to be much more uniform.
  • Crœsos wrote: »
    On a personal level, I have to say that whenever I hear stuff about how boys should be taught to be less violent/less competitive/etc all I hear is "they should be taught to be more like girls".
    lilbuddha wrote: »
    This is absolutely not true. Children are learning from the moment they are born. Most behaviours are learnt from observation.

    I have to agree with lilbuddha more than MtM on this one. There's a tremendous difference in rates of violent crimes and/or sexual assaults between different human societies. The propensity towards violence (or the degree of self-control instilled/inflicted, if you prefer) seems much more likely to be learned behavior than some kind of innate characteristic. Otherwise you'd expect homicide rates (to pick one measure of such things) to be much more uniform.

    I think though that you’d want to look at relative rates of male vs. female criminal involvement within a given society or demographic. IME even if you correct for criminogenic factors that affect specific demographics, criminality unfortunately still tends to skew strongly male within that demographic.

  • On differences in rates of violence, there is an interesting book, "The Anthropogy of War", ed., J. Haas, which I think argues amongst other things, that there were/are warlike tribes and non-warlike tribes, and tries to explain these differences. Suggesting non-innate factors.
  • In 793, men from Denmark sailed across the North Sea explicitly to attack and kill the men on Lindisfarne, and steal their treasure. There was no fight as such, because the men on Lindesfarne offered only passive resistance.

    There are simply too many stories like this to say that men are inherently, genetically/evolutionarily violent. Those who attacked and those who died were essentially cousins.
  • (This has been a fantastic thread to catch up on, and got to page 7 without feeling (very) antagonistic - what an achievement!).

    I play 'knuckles' (rapping 'till you miss, then it swaps) with my 2 kids - daughters - because my Dad played with me, but they won't do it for long! 'This might hurt but we can be friends' - it's a nice thing, we all seem happy with it. They quite like to hurt me...

    I take pride in being 'handy' (with fixing things, not a fighting euphemism) and if anyone wants to talk about that, I'd be happy to chip in. I volunteer at a museum full of scrap iron with a load of old blokes. There are women, and they run the caff and the till in the summer when it's open to the public. It's great. Up-thread there was a good post about losing any practical abilities as we get older. This group of blokes really takes care of each other as they slowly fall apart - the oldest is now 89, a bit frail but sharp as anything. His stories of starting work in 1945 are fantastic. It's nice being able to provide physical grunt as a 'young' 50-ish person.

    (I don't want to put anyone off who isn't into this kind of thing. I'm shit with computers and frightened of spending money, just for full disclosure :smile: ).
  • I agree that there's pride to be taken in a manual job around the house, done well. But that's very much a working/lower middle class thing. It's born of necessity - those richer than us wouldn't think twice about engaging tradespeople to do the work for them, and they'd 'take pride' in the finished product because they paid for it and oversaw the project (even if they also paid someone to do the actual overseeing). I have significantly richer friends/relatives and sometimes I'm shown round their new garden house/conservatory/kitchen/dining room, and yes, it's well done, but they've not done it themselves, so I'm not sure what I'm supposed to be congratulating them on. Being rich? Well done, mate.

    Inevitably, this all goes back to my dad who reroofed the (double) garage in pressed galvanised sheets of metal, at the age of 83, while dying of cancer, solo. I did offer, repeatedly and strenuously, to help, but my input consisted of googling a likely supplier, calculating the number of sheets needed and arranging delivery. He did literally everything in the house, up to and including rebuilding the chimney breast from the ground up.

    (Of course, after he died and the practical jobs fell to me, I discovered just how bodgy some of those fixes were... Some are genuinely "Really? This was never going to hold, was it, Dad?" But he's not there.)
  • You made me smile there - 'we've tiled the bathroom and fitted a new boiler' always makes me grin inwardly and suppress a shitty gag about whatever CORGI is called now. And my Dad's 'perfectionism', which turns out to have been heavy on shitting on my own (probably unbearable) teenage ego, and a bit lighter on a high level of finish - well, sometimes anyway.

    My Dad was (and still sort-of-is) handy, but I don't want to turn into him or encourage the small chip on my shoulder to grow to anything resembling the mighty edifice he'll never be able to put down. All that 'What do you want, a medal? I don't get thanked at work, all I'll get there is the sack if I don't meet the drawing tolerances every time'. I suppose I am glad that I know enough now not to want to add 'never did me any harm', and I've tried to be a bit different with my own kids.
  • I've determined that the stuff I can do, I will do well enough. Most of it is over-engineered - my dad built a pergola which, tbf, lasted a good fifteen years or so, but it was very droopy and rotten for the last five of those. The one I replaced it with last year will outlast the heat death of the universe. But I've completely rebuilt both bathrooms from scratch, separated one room into two, and done various room redecorations to a decent standard. You Tube videos are really helpful, because they allow me to compare how I was told to do it with how other people do it. It's not always the same...

    There is a satisfaction I find in working with my hands, as opposed to my head, that is - I'm not going to say 'manly', but it does fill part of my psyche that other things don't.
  • FirenzeFirenze Shipmate, Host Emeritus
    Doc Tor wrote: »
    There is a satisfaction I find in working with my hands, as opposed to my head, that is - I'm not going to say 'manly', but it does fill part of my psyche that other things don't.

    Just as well. I can't think of anything less gendered. As it chanced, a particularly marked ability for practical creativity ran from my grandfather, through my mother, to me - but missed out my brothers.
  • DT, I don't know if you have read 'the case for working with your hands' by M.Crawford. I enjoyed it. Firenze, most (in fact, I think I can say 'all' and not be speaking out of turn) women I know in RL find that side of my life really, really boring - so it's habitual for me to enjoy doing it, and taking about it, with men instead. I am often really struck by women's creativity, doing stuff I can't do. It's just an accident that amongst the women I know it's art, textiles and pottery. (Actually one woman I used to know was good at TIG welding, but if you know anything about welding you might take even that as a sexist slur if you were so inclined
    - it's the touchy-feely delicate stuff, and it's very hard to do neatly).
  • Dang. My husband is incredibly handy,* though I do all the design, code and instructional stuff, and I'm always glad to talk about it.the two of us also usually over-engineer stuff--it's a kind of paranoia about being responsible for killing someone.

    * probably comes of spending years in a re-education camp being forced to chop down huge trees with an aluminum can, that sort of thing. Someone should do a study of Vietnamese ex-prisoners and see if a larger no. Than usual of them insist on building the new bathroom from scratch and so on..
  • I don't know any Vietnamese, but that kind of thing is true of Poles I know who were adults (or older teenagers) around 1990. But it's amazing how quickly thrift wears off in a culture. Unless its one's fetish :blush:
  • Firenze wrote: »
    Doc Tor wrote: »
    There is a satisfaction I find in working with my hands, as opposed to my head, that is - I'm not going to say 'manly', but it does fill part of my psyche that other things don't.

    Just as well. I can't think of anything less gendered. As it chanced, a particularly marked ability for practical creativity ran from my grandfather, through my mother, to me - but missed out my brothers.
    I'm handy and my fixes are not bodges. I can do more than fix, I build things. I'm handy with a spanner as well. As I mentioned before, I've experience with firearms and explosives. A number of other "boy" things as well.
    ISTM that many things are seen as gendered because that is what people are used to.

  • Many things are seen as gendered because that is what people expect. Men who can't fix things are seen (by both women and men) as lesser. The reverse is not true.
  • Doc Tor wrote: »
    Many things are seen as gendered because that is what people expect. Men who can't fix things are seen (by both women and men) as lesser. The reverse is not true.
    Women who are handy, can wield a hammer or can rebuild a carburettor do not find universal acceptance from men. and are often seen as less than "real" women. Anything a woman does that is seen as part of male territory can be seen as a threat. And that comes from both men and women.

  • MaryLouiseMaryLouise Purgatory Host
    edited December 2019
    Practical skills aren't always gendered but 're-gendering' those skills can challenge all kinds of popular assumptions. One of my favourite South African artists is Pierre Fouché who constructs artworks with lace and rope knotting techniques. He said in an interview: 'The hyper-femininity of traditional lace is a modern viewpoint and one that is slowly and encouragingly eroding again as youth cultures toy with gender ambiguity. Rope-work and nautical knotting, and the male power associated with its practitioners (20th-century American and British sailors), combined with the technical similarities between the techniques led me to draw similar conclusions about macrame’s potential to critique gender norms. '
  • lilbuddha wrote: »
    Doc Tor wrote: »
    Many things are seen as gendered because that is what people expect. Men who can't fix things are seen (by both women and men) as lesser. The reverse is not true.
    Women who are handy, can wield a hammer or can rebuild a carburettor do not find universal acceptance from men. and are often seen as less than "real" women. Anything a woman does that is seen as part of male territory can be seen as a threat. And that comes from both men and women.

    That doesn't contradict anything that I said. We are, inexplicably, talking about male experience here, and how it feels to be 'handy' or not.
  • MaryLouise wrote: »
    ...led me to draw similar conclusions about macrame’s potential to critique gender norms. '

    I'm sympathetic to your post, Mary Louise, but nonetheless that last bit is a very funny sentence :smile:

    (DT - I missed a chance to respond to something you said about making things BIG! I get criticised for the same thing - when I made two (ground floor) rooms into one-and-a-half, a friend wondered if I had bought a tank, and intended to sneak it upstairs before the wife noticed.)
  • One advantage of getting old (60) is that I feel less embarrassed about asking for practical help, or paying for it. As a young man I felt deeply ashamed at not being able to do all that practical stuff.
  • I enjoyed Stephen Colbert’s comment on a news piece that noted that millennial young men are considerably less interested in DIY than previous generations: it’s because they all remember the results of their dads doing DIY. :smiley:
  • One advantage of getting old (60) is that I feel less embarrassed about asking for practical help, or paying for it. As a young man I felt deeply ashamed at not being able to do all that practical stuff.

    I think I can understand that - I used to feel I _had_ to do everything (and ideally the result had to be good, and cost nothing). I'm lucky I have a friend who is a builder who is prepared to work along with me, so that's a kind of half-way house for big stuff; and also, I have maybe reined-in the really extreme end of palliative intensive care for dying transport that I used to subject myself to. I at least try to be conscious about all those things I am rubbish at (eg computers, mobile phones, shopping, restaurants, hotels, errr...having a proper job) that normal people take in their stride, when someone asks me to do something for them.

    As DT says though, there's a money aspect to all this that makes it less of a choice for some of us. I'm OK with that, because this kind of life is more dealable-with than the cubicle in the big glass building - but these are very personal choices.
  • Doc Tor wrote: »
    lilbuddha wrote: »
    Doc Tor wrote: »
    Many things are seen as gendered because that is what people expect. Men who can't fix things are seen (by both women and men) as lesser. The reverse is not true.
    Women who are handy, can wield a hammer or can rebuild a carburettor do not find universal acceptance from men. and are often seen as less than "real" women. Anything a woman does that is seen as part of male territory can be seen as a threat. And that comes from both men and women.

    That doesn't contradict anything that I said. We are, inexplicably, talking about male experience here, and how it feels to be 'handy' or not.
    There is a lot of what is male and what is not involved in this as well.
  • @lilbuddha are you hear to listen to those of us who are male trying to make sense of what we are? Or are you here to make snarky comments and belittle us?
  • Penny SPenny S Shipmate
    edited December 2019
    We had a school trip to Folkestone once, and as the party I was with processed along the Stade (quay, harbour for fishing boats to the right, pub and architect designed fishing cottages to the left*), I saw, to my great interest, a fisherman with his net tied to a lamp-post, and stretched out so that he could mend it. And one of my 8-year-old little boys announced, quite loudly that it was girls' work! I suggested that he go and tell the fisherman that!** I was somewhat puzzled as to where he could possibly have picked up that using a shuttle and twine was feminine. No shuttles round school. I suppose he might have thought it was knitting as opposed to knotting, or someone in his family did macramé.
    *There had been a competition after WWI to replace the bombed village. https://n450v.alamy.com/450v/b4hcba/boats-at-harbor-folkestone-kent-england-b4hcba.jpg
    ** He decided not to.
  • @lilbuddha are you hear to listen to those of us who are male trying to make sense of what we are? Or are you here to make snarky comments and belittle us?
    I am listening. I am not making snarky comments. It is not my aim to belittle anyone. I am discussing the issues raised because this is a discussion board.
  • My dad was reasonably proficient with a needle and thread, enough to mend his own clothes. I have three sewing machines - my mum's old Singer (it's a 1950s model, one stitch, just about electric), and two modern ones (one I asked for as a birthday present and is dead fancy, does all the guff including overlocking, and I then inherited my m-i-l's).

    When it came to costuming days at school, I used to set to with the material and the scissors. Yes, it was my mum who taught me (with help from school, where we all did two terms of needlework, two terms of metalwork and two terms of woodwork), but I never felt being able to sew was solely a female thing. What it probably was, though, was a homemaking skill. Did professional male tailors darn socks or put the tape on a pair of curtains in the evening?

    At a data point, both my kids (now in their 20s :scream: ) can sew/dressmake to a decent standard. The Boy is into C12th re-enactment, and makes his own period clothes from the whole cloth. He's also not allowed to use a sewing machine for the stitching that shows, either.
  • Doc Tor wrote: »
    He's also not allowed to use a sewing machine for the stitching that shows, either.

    Does he make bone needles? :smile:

    I wish I was better with a sewing machine. I've just got an old one working which (to be predictable again) I found in the bin at work; there wasn't much wrong with it which is good because I find them a bit impenetrable. It only does one stitch but it seems it'll do 8 layers of denim without creating a massive pile-up on the back, so let's see...
  • RooKRooK Admin Emeritus
    edited December 2019
    My son and I do all the needle-and-thread mending. My ex and my daughter don't have the patience for it, and just ask us to do it.

    I remember learning sewing (and sewing machines) in high school "home economics" course, and finding it all an immense relief. Mostly because as a latchkey kid, there was nobody with any time to teach me such things - and, well, being poor, many of my things needed mending. There was definitely some male posturing and bullshit regarding the class being mandatory for everyone, but since these were generally the same bozos who elected to not take any math, science, or literature, I wondered aloud if it was because it was too hard.

    I got beat up a lot in high school.
  • lilbuddha wrote: »
    @lilbuddha are you hear to listen to those of us who are male trying to make sense of what we are? Or are you here to make snarky comments and belittle us?
    I am listening. I am not making snarky comments. It is not my aim to belittle anyone. I am discussing the issues raised because this is a discussion board.

    It seems an awful lot like, "Don't talk about men, talk about women! We can be handy too!" Exactly what men are accused of doing to conversations women have about themselves.
  • I've been following the discussion, but wasn't certain what to say.

    I find myself in an ambiguous position. I identify as queer, but have some pretty butch behaviour, so navigating the question of what it is to be a man has been a lifelong challenge, but not in entirely bad way. Just an unanswerable question. I never learnt how to sew (my mother and sister were quite good), but not because it was a 'girl thing', but because there were two others in the household to sew a button or do whatever, and I have poor manual coordination. OTOH, I'm a dab hand in the kitchen (as were/are all of us in the family), and cooking was not seen as gender specific, just a life skill (as is sewing). I like some sports and not others (playing and watching), camping, going to the pub and verbally rough housing the other regulars. Back in the day I was a decent enough industrial carpenter (fine stuff was well beyond my abilities). But I like all the arts, can be reduced to tears by them. That would strike my father as very unmanly, but he strove mightily to project rough strength, despite his being a very good dancer.

    Which brings this to mind. He couldn't reconcile these the way our hero does, because our hero knows that being light on his feet does not impugn his masculinity.

    Where does that leave me? I don't know. A friend of mine in classics told me once that watching tragedies, Athenian men, knowing the stories well, would still react with undisguised horror, and weep. I suppose that I'm in good company. I could have worse issues in my life.

    Perhaps the key to this is not to care what others see, but to know within that we act with love and honour.

    That's my initial stab at this, anyway.
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