News and Opinions

Take back the Night

Written by immoralfear on . Posted in Relationships

From : movetheclouds

When I first expressed intent to write about women assaulting women, I faced much objection from the community. I have been told point blank that this either does not exist, or does not happen often enough to be pertinent even after I shared my stories of various degrees of same sex abuse.

The few who do acknowledge this issue exists are afraid to voice it out under the flimsy excuse that the community is not ready.  To this, I say that there is never a good time to address thorny issues like these.  I am also told that it might give others the impression that lesbian relationships are dysfunctional.  Going by the same logic, are heterosexual pairings not equally screwed up, given the amount of media attention dedicated to men assaulting women?

Coming up with this article is not easy at all.  However, I believe that this issue needs to be brought out into the open.  By sweeping it under the carpet, we are revictimising those who have experienced some form of female assault, driving them further into their closets of repressed fear, guilt and shame.

I say tomayto, you say tomahto…

Written by Jin on . Posted in Relationships

So… I’m standing in the rain, on the grass. At a political rally. Me, the epitome of political apathy. I’m here only because my girlfriend wanted to come, and she almost begged me to come with her. So I gave in. So, I’m here, wondering “What am I doing here?! Is this what it means to be a couple?” You see, we have vastly differing political views. In fact, I don’t even care about politics, whereas my girlfriend is the sort who feels such a high from the electric atmosphere at political rallies. That is just one of our many differences.

Another difference is the way in which we communicate. To me, every little word that is uttered provides its own little nuance, whereas she listens to the whole story and only remembers the summary of the main points. Believe me, this has caused countless arguments between us. From the same message, both of us can draw two conclusions. Actually this issue about communication causes the most problems. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not trying to say that relationships don’t have conflicts. It is perfectly fine for two people in a relationship to sometimes disagree or fight. But this idea in itself was a paradigm shift for me!


Lesbian brains, lesbophobia and the path to the divine

Written by snorkeem on . Posted in Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity/Expression

(Courtesy of Yawning Bread, a most respected and incisive place for countless thought-provoking and insightful articles.)

A Swedish researcher has found that lesbians’ brains respond in a way that is distinct from heterosexual men’s and women’s, to two hormone-derived chemicals. This is yet another piece of evidence that there is a biological basis to sexual orientation.

Ivanka Savic from the Karolinska Institute in Stockholm carried out the study using two chemicals.

One, labelled “AND”, is derived from progesterone and found in men’s armpit sweat. In heterosexual women, she found that sniffing this chemical triggers a response in the anterior hypothalamus of heterosexual women’s brains. This area is involved in sexual interest, lying as it does very close to the pituitary gland. In homosexual women however, AND triggers a response in another part of the brain, the olfactory region. This is the region where smells are normally processed.

The brains were imaged using positron emission tomography and magnetic resonance imaging.

What the results show is that where heterosexual women respond to a male smell in the sexual part of their brains, lesbians respond to it as just another smell. The lesbians’ response is similar to heterosexual men’s. The latter too handle AND as just another smell, in the olfactory part of their brains.

The other chemical that Savic worked with was derived from oestrogen and found in pregnant women’s urine. It was labelled “EST”.

Savic knew from earlier studies that EST produces responses in heterosexuals that are opposite to the effects of AND. In straight men’s brains, EST triggers a response in the hypothalamus (the sex area). In straight women’s brains, the response is located in the olfactory region, as just another smell.

Your Rights As A Counselling Client (Part 2)

Written by peggy on . Posted in Emotional & Physical Wellness

We all go through times of difficulty, crisis, loss, tension or uncertainty. Counselling is a service and a support to individuals and families who are facing life issues.

These problems may range from financial hardship, marital discord, stress at work, relationship conflict, child management to crisis of confidence in oneself.

In any counselling intervention, counsellors are guided by a set of beliefs and principles.

These are:
- a belief in the dignity of the human person
- a belief in the uniqueness of the individual
- the respect for confidentiality and privacy
- a belief in the responsibility of every individual to decide and initiate change

As a counselling client, you have a right to:

- have your points of view, decisions and emotions respected, not ridiculed
- know the qualifications and experience of the counsellor
- have the counsellor state his/her professional and objective point of view
- ask to be referred to another counsellor or agency
- be informed of any negative consequences that may follow a particular course of treatment
- expect confidentality of information within the limits defined by the counsellor, the agency, and the courts of Singapore

Qualified counsellors have undergone professional training in both the theory and practice of helping people with life issues. As professionals, they are skilled in structuring and guiding the counselling intervention and are effective in their response to individual needs.

There is no fixed method or approach for helping people through counselling. Instead the counsellor’s personality and professional skills form an important factor in the counselling intervention.

(The above text is extracted and adapted from “Do I need counselling?”, a guide to professional counselling services published by the Singapore Association for Counselling.)

Being Single

Written by pure ego on . Posted in Relationships

What does it mean to be single? Single-hood to some means the in between relationships where we date and have numerous flings. While to others, it means to occupy time with friends and many social outings so as to be able to detect a potential partner for a relationship, yes just short of going out on an actual date. Then, there are the rest of us who devote most of our time meeting friends every now and then but concentrate on work and doing things alone.

Single-hood has a different meaning for me each time. The first was the fear of not being loved by anyone again. After all I had just discovered my sexuality and was lack of a direction. Then of course each time I was left single the aftermath feeling evolved. I would say age played a part too.

No prizes for guessing which kind of singles I belong to mentioned in the first paragraph of this article. Okay, if it is not obvious enough- yes I belong to the third kind.


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