First, I want to make one thing clear: If you hate the character Mary Morstan, I assume you have very good reasons for doing so, reasons you have spent a lot of time thinking about. I am not here to judge you or admonish you for your feelings about a fictional character. That’s not why I’m here.
Until last week, I was able to keep scrolling past posts where hatred of Mary was espoused. I was able simply to ignore things I didn’t like or agree with. And then last week happened. Interestingly enough, I watched that episode of Fargo, and barely blinked when Lester violently killed his wife. I know generally what’s going to happen in that show, and it wasn’t a huge surprise. But something about seeing that image turned into a gifset with John and Mary, characters I care about and am deeply invested in, made all the difference in the world.
That was the first time I’ve ever been genuinely triggered by something I’ve seen online. I’ve been pissed off or disgusted or hurt, of course, but never actually triggered. I’m not going to go into the details of what that image brought up for me, but suffice it to say that I have spent the last several days dealing with a shitload of memories I carefully locked away more than 20 years ago. I’ve had multiple panic attacks, have freaked out on friends and family, and seriously considered walking away from fandom for a while.
I have some amazing friends who held my hand through it and reminded me that it probably happened here because fandom is a safe space. They told me I had the right to put up boundaries and to protect myself, and that I should stay, because fandom is a positive force in my life and is worth fighting for.
So I spent some time blacklisting things and unfollowing people, and that began to give me a sense of control again. Please understand that if I unfollowed you over this, it isn’t personal. I’m not judging you or making a political statement. I am simply protecting myself. Also note that I’m not saying that people shouldn’t judge or make personal statements about this issue; they have every right to do so. That’s just not what I am doing here. I am doing triage. On myself.
So here is the point of this post: I am asking — begging, pleading — those of you who create or reblog posts that depict or describe John killing Mary, or physically or sexually assaulting Mary, please consider tagging those posts with a trigger warning like “domestic violence”. Or whatever — make up a tag and let us know what it is, and those of us who don’t want to see it can peacefully avoid.
If you don’t intend to tag, that’s fine too. Just please let me know so that I can unfollow and block as necessary. Again, it isn’t personal. I am doing what I need to do to keep fandom a safe space for me. And I’m sure that I’m not the only one.
And one more favor, please: I appreciate people reblogging or signal boosting this, but please don’t add comments that either condemn or praise the posts or individuals in question. That’s not what this is about. Thanks for your consideration.
~ Emma Grant
"because fandom is a safe space”
We have so much real shit happening in our lives - why take this hate with us to the warmest and friendliest place that the fandom is for many of us?
U little googly-eyed shits…:)))
My mind rebels at stagnation…
Kasia, happy Birthday!!! ^____^
I have just got to 500 followers (OMG What?! Thank you!) and I think that I should do a follow forever so that you lovely people can have some great blogs to follow! I don’t have many mutuals due to being a complete potato when socialising but enjoy my list of blogs!
Thank you so much, sweetie! xx