carrie mesrobian

my feelings on the matter have been well-documented

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Female Sexuality in YA Fiction: A Look at the Landscape


I’ve been working on a huge project about female sexuality in YA fiction, and after bucket loads of reading and thinking about it, I’ve found a lot of holes.

Here’s a look at what’s missing — and what isn’t missing so much — when it comes to the exploration of female sexuality in YA

So many opportunities to tell so many untold stories. GO FORTH YA WRITERS & MAKE IT SO

Filed under sex in ya lit catagator kelly jensen girls in YA ya lit

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Mental Health & Back to School


I’ve been thinking of some simple things to say for followers who are about to start (or return to) school in the next few weeks, particularly those of you who manage mental health issues. Everyone’s experience is different, but a few things can be helpful and some things need to be said/written for those of you who haven’t yet started college.

  1. Use your college/university’s mental health services. I can’t promise you they’ll be good, but if you don’t try them you won’t know. And chances are, even mediocre services will get you through a rough time. If you suspect you have a mental health issue but have various reasons that you didn’t seek treatment before college, then going to the mental health services at your school can be a life-altering, powerful thing. And you have the power to make the appointment without asking or telling anyone (except the person who makes the appointments haha).

  2. Get sunlight. Vitamin D is your friend and is easy to get from the sun. But as the weather turns cool in the Northern Hemisphere (especially in the northern parts of the northern hemisphere) sunlight becomes difficult to get. Consider researching your body’s needs when it comes to vitamins. Eat as well as you can afford to eat in order to keep your mood stable. 

  3. Get sleep. A regular sleeping pattern is ideal but also nearly impossible when you work, attend class, care for family, etc. Try your best to maintain a sleeping pattern though. It makes a huge difference.
  4. Meal time is not set for you, but you need to have a routine: breakfast, lunch, and dinner can end up becoming very inconsistent because you have a different schedule every day. For those of us who 1) take pills with meals and/or 2) are sensitive to blood sugar mood swings, we need to stay consistent. So, if you have to eat and no one’s around, go eat. If you can’t eat alone in the cafeteria/eating place, get some food from there and eat it elsewhere. Carry snacks so that you can eat during class. Be consistent!

  5. Exercise does not need to happen in the gym. I sent a post out earlier from the ADAA about how to manage anxiety and stress. They recommend exercise, but not an intense workout schedule meant to burn 1000s of calories. 
  6. Also: The gym is not packed with people from open to close. Find out when the gym is sparsely attended and decide if your schedule and your mental health will accommodate attending. Usually employees of the gym can give you a good head’s up if you don’t have any friends on campus who know for sure.
  7. You will miss those you have relationships with (platonic, familial,  romantic, or sexual) and that’s okay. You are not the only one; though everyone is going to deal with those issues differently. Some people dive headfirst into new relationships and can come on strong (even when it comes to friendships). Be patient with yourself but also protect yourself from becoming over dependent on new people. Even if they’re going through similar separation issues, they will not necessarily know you well enough to treat you the way you need to be treated. Be open with those you can trust. And be ready to have new friendships burn out because that person you clicked with one night isn’t actually in line with your personality after all. It sucks at the time, but it’s ok in the long run. 
  8. Fess up when you fuck up. You’re going to mess up at least 1 class. You’ll oversleep, miss a big deadline, bomb the midterm, whatever. If you have depression and/or anxiety, these fuck ups will throw you into a  spiral of self-loathing, fear, and negative fantasizing (e.g. ‘I’m going to flunk out of college because of this!’) Know this: one fucked up class won’t ruin your college career. And as someone with anxiety, I can tell you that the sooner you experience the guilt and shame of failure, the better you will handle it down the line. So: when it comes to classes, admit when you’ve fucked up. Accept the F’s you earn. Don’t rely on professors or other students to bail you out — extra credit is sometimes available (more often than you’d imagine) but even when it’s not, honesty will get you more than treachery. When my students are up front about their fuck ups, I’m much more confident that they will succeed after college. And much more willing to give them another chance if there’s time left in the semester. If you use college as a chance to deal with failure, you’ll learn a lot about yourself and you’ll be better able to handle the future failures when you’re at work and screw up something big time. 
  9. You are not your mental illness, but your mental illness is part of your life. Don’t feel obligated to tell everyone every detail about the illness you manage, but you don’t have to be ashamed to say things like “I’m not comfortable in crowds” or “I can’t drink because it complicates a medical condition I have.” These things can set a comfortable barrier when you’re first navigating the social scene. Later you can be more open; or not. You decide. Personally, I just tell people that I take meds but I’m in a different situation seeing as I’m a professional novelist person. I’m expected to say shocking things!

College is fun and lonely, quick and boring, real life and sheltered life. Really, it’s not one thing to all people or even one thing to one person. One semester will suck; the next will rock. Don’t allow your thoughts of the future to overwhelm your thoughts in the present. Be well and be kind.

Thoughts or additions?

Excellent list

Filed under evan james roskos mental health self-care mental illness college students

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"Oh, don’t mind me; I’ll just sit here on my super loud motorcycle with ridiculous handlebars that would exhaust even people with excellent muscles to drive long distances and watch Herschel’s farm burn because that makes total sense and isn’t a stupid romantic bullshit shot or anything…"

(Source: herifmanyak, via chandra75)

Filed under walking dead probs daryl fucking dixon