In addition to being an out bi woman, A. has a degree in Cognitive Science, has completed trainings for LGBTQ+ and sexual assault survivor advocacy, and has experience answering calls for an anonymous LGBTQ+ help line. She is passionate about feminism, the bi+ community, LGBTQ+ and female representation in the media, and helping others.
A. Rose Bi’s column relies on questions from readers like you! You can send any questions you might have or suspect other readers may have to the author directly at firstname.lastname@example.org. All questions are anonymous, nothing is off-limits, and anything related to upcoming issue topics is extra-encouraged!
Dear A. Rose Bi,
Every day I wake up and it seems the world is crashing down around me. I keep vacillating between wanting to quit my job to spend all my time protesting, volunteering, and running for office and just curling up in a blanket fort under my bed. I feel so lost and helpless right now. I’m having trouble focusing at work and I’m constantly worried. Are there things I can do to direct my energy in a productive way? How do I handle the news that keeps coming out from the current administration and still live my life?
What the fresh f*ck is happening right now?
Dear fellow human being,
I FEEL YOU. I totally have the Hunger Games/dystopian reality haze clouding all my thoughts throughout my day. I think there are more than a few ways to channel that haze, a few of which I’ve listed below:
- Call your congressperson, state reps, local politicians, etc. You can find these people really easily at https://callyourrep.co/ and they have easy scripts to use if you don’t know where to start.
- Volunteer! Time or money or stuff—Everyone has different constraints on their lives and resources and that’s okay. If you’re looking to volunteer your time, as a starting point, check on Planned Parenthood volunteer opportunities around the country (https://www.plannedparenthood. org/about-us/jobs-volunteering), or if you’re in the Boston area, you can apply to volunteer for Fenway Health’s LGBTQ+ Anonymous Help Line by emailing Jo Wisch at email@example.com or check it out online here http:// fenwayhealth.org/give/get-involved/. (Bonus points: See if your company matches donations to charity.)
- Look at the opportunities that exist in your life already where you can make a difference. Are you a parent? Teach your children about inclusivity and kindness. Do you help hire people at work? Write inclusive job descriptions and focus on hiring diverse employees. No matter what your professional and personal lives look like, support other women and support other disenfranchised groups. You can make so much difference just in the circle in which you already exist.
- Take care of yourself. Let me say this again for the people in the back: Take care of yourself. Self-care is crucial; if we spread ourselves too thin or run at 100% until we’re drained, we are no help to anyone. Remember the airplane rule: Secure your own oxygen mask before helping others. Unplug from the news, meditate, read a book, go for a run, have a politics-off-limits board game night with your friends, or just watch cartoons while snuggling your cat (my personal fav).
Regardless of how you decide to move forward, I want to stress one more thing. This is not just a women’s fight or a queer women’s fight. This is also a fight for the whole LGBTQ+ community, for blacks and African-Americans, for Hispanic and Latinx people, for Native people, for students, for the elderly, for Muslims, for immigrants, for people with disabilities, and more. When we fight for progress, we have to fight for the progress of all people.
Take actions that make the most sense for you! There are a lot of people in our shoes right now feeling the same way —reach out to those people or communities and lean on each other. I can’t promise this will get better or easier, but we have a helluva lot of people who are already raising some serious hell, and that gives me hope.
Best of luck and lots of love!
A. Rose Bi