NEW YEAR’S OPEN THREAD: What’s Your Resolution?

Blessed be, kittens! 2016 is almost over. It’s been decided pretty unanimously that this has been one of the worst years on record, because of the celebrity deaths strewn throughout that struck us in the hearts and the dreams of ours which died on Election Night and the endless stream of no-good, very bad news which created a backdrop for all of these other sad things to happen in the midst of! But one thing is certain: We will go on. The clock will strike midnight on New Year’s Eve and poof! It’ll be a brand new year, a new dawn, a new day, a new chance, a blank slate.

I love the turning of the page that happens on New Year’s Eve. I know it’s mostly bullshit, because really we could start our lives over whenever we want (and trust, I know this because I did not too long ago), but it’s nice to have a celebration around the world ringing out for what could be. This year, I’ve pledged to start the calendar by redoing The Desire Map and getting my emotions in order to move forward as briskly and bravely as possible. Also, I’m going to SoulCycle ASAP because I’ve been in New Jersey with nary an overpriced spin class in my neighborhood.

So, what’s your resolution? Yes, you! I wanna know how you’re gonna make this year the best year ever — and certainly better than this one. I wanna know what’s in store for you. In fact, we all do! We’re all here, a bunch of queers standing in front of the Internet asking it for its truths. And to make it more fair, here’s our resolutions. These are the hopes and dreams Team Autostraddle is clutching to its chest in 2017.

a golden retriever puppy in a party hat with a noisemaker in its mouth falling asleep against a pink background

Carmen, Feminism Editor

I will follow the universe. I will think about what makes me happy — really happy, happy right now, happy for real – and I will shamelessly and unabashedly chase those things. I will follow the universe. I will drink as much fucking coffee and espresso as I want. I will follow the universe. I will write “drive into the desert” and “drive next to the ocean” in my planner more often. I will follow the universe. I will get rid of everything that doesn’t fit, everything that has no place, everything that no longer serves me. I will follow the universe. I will figure out where all of my mightiest parts are hiding and re-attach them to my body. I will follow the universe. I will pack up my car all by myself, put Eli in the passenger seat, and see something I’ve never seen before. I will follow the universe. I will build a revolution. I will follow the universe.

I don’t want to keep secrets anymore. I don’t want to put myself second anymore. I don’t want to run myself into the ground anymore. I don’t want to be noble and scarred anymore. I don’t want to second-guess myself anymore. I don’t want to choose pain in the place of conflict anymore. I don’t want to sleep in anymore. I want to meet someone on the fucking bridge. I will drink two liters of Evian a day, go to SoulCycle twice a week, get to work early and leave while the sun is still out, keep my room clean and keep my car cleaner, smoke American Spirits with the window down, wonder often where it’s going but refuse to script the next scene, pin love letters to my cubicle walls, repeat my CDFs to myself every morning, remember my worth, and surround myself with people who value what I do and who I am.

Also, I need to go back to budgeting.

KaeLyn, Staff Writer

I don’t believe women can or should have to attempt to “have it all” when it comes to work and kids. Until men are culturally expected to take an equal role in parenting, there is always going to be a double standard for moms at work (even gay ones). I love my work and I love my little pooper. My resolution is to find a balance that works for all of us in 2017, even if it means my work life and activist work shift to accommodate my newly intense home life. Also, I’d really like to get back to journaling?

Erin, Staff Writer

My resolution this year is to learn how to invest properly and be so well versed in the stock market that if I called into the Suze Orman show she would have nothing but praise for me.

Carrie, Staff Writer

Slightly ironic to say here, but my resolution is to spend less time online. I don’t mean the unavoidable work stuff — hi, I’m on staff at this website — but the empty hours on social media and going down thinkpiece wormholes. I feel like I used to be a lot more productive than I am now, and unproductivity equals anxiety for me, so I want to try cutting back on my biggest distraction and see what that does. At the very least, I should make my distractions worthwhile — read a book when I’m bored, stuff like that.

Stef, Vapid Fluff Editor

This year, I would like to have a crush on another human being that involves any amount of chill whatsoever. Last year, I wanted to figure out a solid balance of work/personal life and never did, so I’d like to keep working on that as well.

Mey, Trans Editor and Witch

This year I’m moving to LA, so I guess my resolution sort of needs to be to work harder or more? Because I need to make more money this year because LA is a lot more expensive than Idaho. But also I’m going to make a resolution to be a better, less selfish and more kind friend to the people I love.

Laura M, Staff Writer

This year I’m going to be a better activist by thinking deeply about areas where I have privilege and leveraging the fuck out of it to help groups who are marginalized in ways that I am not.

Also I would like to get really good at homebrewing.

Heather, Senior Editor

The night of the election, after it became clear that Donald Trump was going to win the electoral college, Stacy and I were lying in bed, sick and stunned and heartbroken. At some point she rolled toward me and turned my face to her and said, “You have to promise me that whatever comes next, you’ll be gentle with yourself.” Being gentle is kind of my main thing. It’s why kids and dogs and cats love me. But as gentle as I am with other people and animals, I am hard as all heck on myself. (Plus also: I wouldn’t trade this job for all the Kit Kats in all the world, but the hardest part about it is the constant barrage of anger from queer folks blaming me for whatever thing. This thing that happened on a TV show, that thing someone wrote on a mainstream website, Donald Trump getting elected, etc.) I’ve never slept well my whole life, even as a little kid, because I was always convinced there was more I should be out there doing, and I’d obsess over the things I had done, convinced I hadn’t done enough. I’m doing it right this second. It’s snowing and I’m thinking about all the ways I could have made my outdoor feral cat shelters even warmer. So my resolution this year is to keep my promise to Stacy to be gentle with myself as I continue to unleash my fire on the world.

Also I plan to keep going with last year’s resolution which was to remember that Dumbledore couldn’t have accomplished all he did if he’d spent his time acting as a Hogwarts hall monitor.

Alaina, Staff Writer

This year, I resolve to stop disappearing when I get stressed out and also to get back into therapy in a very real way. Also more dancing and Instagram-able moments that happen with friends because I live alone and spend too much time alone. Also, I never figured out budgeting last year, but 2016 was also a hot mess, so I’m gonna try that again. Also, I want to be the kind of person who has routines. They’re so comfortable and yet here I am still living routine-less. No more. Also more dates.

Riese, Editor-in-Chief / CEO

Primarily, I would like to film a queer re-creation of the music video for “Work From Home” in my pole barn starring Erin Sullivan, Kaylah Wilson, Sarah Sarwar, and other stars TBD. The male parts will be played by butch lesbians. Keep your eyes peeled for that. Secondarily, I’m literally living inside the fallout of a breakup — in a house of a certain size on a certain amount of land in a certain location chosen for an eventually-to-be-married couple who wanted to have a family one day and grow things on the land — and I want to figure out what new destiny lies in store for this place now that that relationship is over. Also I want to sign up for or commit to doing at least one recurring outside-of-the-house activity (e.g., volunteer work, club, class, etc.).

Laneia, Executive Editor

I want to do the same things I always want to do: get more sleep, grow something I can eat, drink more water, look at my kids’ faces more, call my grandmother, do yoga, take pictures of abandoned shopping carts, clean out every closet in the house, paint on something bigger than a sketchpad, read a book a week. I want to be a better person. I want to start projects and finish them and make room for new projects. I want to mute doubt. I want to be honest with myself and then do something about it. And I still want a kitten.

Maree, Staff Writer

Eat less meat. Drink all of the coffee in my mug or cup instead of abandoning it. Write more short stories. Write more letters. Write more. Say no to the things I don’t want to do that I don’t have to do, and say yes to the things that make me uncomfortable. Find out where the hell my father is. Speak softer but with more assurance. Buy tissues instead of just using toilet paper. Hang things on the walls of my living room, finally. Make more things with my hands. Take better care of my cuticles. Put more money in my savings account, and less random shit on my credit card. Learn how to whistle. Use the hiking boots my mother sent me at least once. Watch more documentaries. Try to stop being so scared of how much I love my girlfriend. Try.

Isabel, Staff Writer

I already stopped biting my nails because time is an illusion. Take that, 2016.

2017 is looking to be a year of asking for help. I spent so much of this last year struggling with anxiety, depression, overwhelming workloads and astronomical expectations. So (and this already started happening), this upcoming year will be the year I finally believe that constant improvement is better than delayed perfection. This will be a year of met deadlines, reliability, mindfulness and thoughtfulness. I’ll update my software the very night my computer suggests it, I’ll email back in a timely fashion (I hate email for the record) I’ll communicate better, and I won’t get short with my mom. I’m going to call my dad more often.

I’ll finally perfect my hollandaise sauce.

Nikki, Intern

I would just like to preface this with Carmen asked everyone to write a resolution otherwise she would cry, so here I am. I care about Carmen’s hydration and there doesn’t need to be added tears.

My 2017 I want to really dedicate myself to myself. Be less of a hermit. In 2016 I was working so much. I can work but when I have jobs that are more client/customer facing it takes so much energy out of me. I would just work and spend so much time reenergizing myself it left very little time for me to be social.

Be kinder to myself, go to bed on time, make myself food and don’t be lean on the vegetables, talk more, give zero fucks. I give too many fucks about everything all the time. Care only about people who care for me. Oh and figure out how I can add a dog to my life.

Rachel, Managing Editor

This year I would like to work harder than I ever have before on things I care about and for my community, and at the same time would like to give myself permission to not work so hard all the time, at least not in the exact same way I do now. I am hoping that somehow the latter will make the former more feasible! That’s how that works right?

Yvonne, Senior Editor

This year I want to write more and be better at time management. I recently read in a book that “Time management mandates that you get honest about who you are and what’s important to you, and then to make choices based on that assessment, and not out of guilt, shame, obligation or convention.” That’s exactly what I want to do. I need to deeply reflect and reach inward to figure out what I really, really want for myself and make a plan to obtain those dreams.

Cee, Tech Director

My resolution is 2560 x 1440. You meant screen resolution, right?

Cecelia, Staff Writer

This is the first year of my adult life that I’ve actually figured out what my priorities are, what path I want to follow, and how to save enough money to make my dreams happen. My plan for this year is basically: make art in the mountains for a while, then move to Brooklyn and surround myself with weirdos. It’s unconventional, for sure. But I can’t believe I’ve grown enough to get to the point where I’m embracing an unconventional life path. After spending my whole life internalizing the goals of the Asian model minority, and trying to turn my queerness to straightness, and trying to hide my irreconcilable differences into easily understood awards and accomplishments, it feels huge that I’ve safely untethered myself to the idea of stability. It’s huge that I’ve relinquished myself of the burden of thinking that a stable career and a stable income with a neatly wrapped story to give the world equals happiness. Having survived most of my life by changing some part of myself to be acceptable means that I could never before envision a life that would allow me to be loved just for being my authentic self. So I’m gonna try that this year, and it’s very terrifying. I hope that the world loves me! Also I’ll also be in a place where I can re-energize myself to do some meaningful political work for this fucked up world. So I want to commit to activism again! And because I want to continue to grow, I’m definitely gonna get more serious about mental health and find a good therapist!

Okay, now it’s your turn.

How are you starting over? How will you be better, or gentler, or wiser? What will you finally dare yourself to do? Where will you end up? Start dreaming and scheming, queermos. It’s almost time for a brand new year to unfold – and you’ll have 365 days to stuff it full of whatever the fuck makes you light up, stand strong, and burst open.

Tell us your resolution in the comments – or just talk about your day! Or show me photos of your pets. That’s always my fave.

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Carmen spent six years at Autostraddle, ultimately serving as Straddleverse Director, Feminism Editor and Social Media Co-Director. She is now the Consulting Digital Editor at Ms. and writes regularly for DAME, the Women’s Media Center, the National Women’s History Museum and other prominent feminist platforms; her work has also been published in print and online by outlets like BuzzFeed, Bitch, Bust, CityLab, ElixHER, Feministing, Feminist Formations, GirlBoss, GrokNation, MEL, Mic and SIGNS, and she is a co-founder of Argot Magazine. You can find Carmen on Twitter, Instagram and Tumblr or in the drive-thru line at the nearest In-N-Out.

Carmen has written 919 articles for us.


  1. When I move this may I want to put the effort into finding my people so I don’t find myself crying alone on NYE with my kitten because I have lived in current city for-freaking-ever and still haven’t made friends.

    Also maybe exercise, since I keep telling my patients that’s healthy and shit… but its so boring!

    • I have a friend who just moved to NYC! And she also enjoys books an awful lot. What part of the city do you hang in? (If you don’t find this creepy anyway)

      • Aw that’s so sweet. Tragically I live hella far from NYC and won’t be headed there any time soon but I will definitely include autostraddle networking in my friend-making goals :)

        • Thats cool! I know some people find it weird–but I figure if I know someone who’s looking for friends and run into someone in the area…well, it can’t hurt. There’s enough loneliness in the world.

          Good luck! And happy new year!

  2. Ahh I love this open thread! I am a very prolific New Years Resolution-maker, and I always have all the boring ones like floss and read more books and also figuring out that budgeting thing (like a lot of AS staff, heyo!).

    Some of the more personal ones include learning to read tarot, figuring out how to love others and the world deeply and fully without becoming exhausted and having no love left for myself, continuing on with community organizing/activism and figuring out what projects I’m really passionate about and where I have the most potential to make an impact, and being better to myself this year than I was last year.

    I recently went through a “friend break up” and am left with a lot of lingering questions about friendships, relationships, and reciprocity. Does it make you a bad person to take people out of your life that don’t show they care about you in the ways that you need them to? Is love and care given with the expectation of it being returned somehow at some point in the future when you need it really an expression of love and care? I’m sure there’s a resolution in there somewhere, like something about evaluating my relationships and expectations and needs, etc., etc.

    2016 was tough, but also a lot of good things happened to me this past year, too. I am sensing beautiful things happening in the upcoming year. I wish beautiful years for all you, too <3

  3. I actually just wrote a Facebook post about this a few days ago, so I’m going to copy/paste it here:

    “In 2017, I would like to write a full-length musical. I haven’t written a full musical since grad school, which was 3 years ago. I keep pushing writing to the side for a million reasons. Sometimes I forget that I went to school for this, and it’s what I want to do- excuse me, what I do. Yes, I produce, yes I work at the JCC, but I’m a writer. I write musicals. And I’m going to write one. I won’t let chronic illness or self-sabotage or insecurity or anything stop me. I’m beautiful and I’m here and I’m going to write a musical.”

    Also, I want to be unashamed of who I am – a lesbian, a plus size woman, a person who lives with mental illness. Carrie Fisher taught me that I should be proud to be who I am, and that I have no reason to hide these things. I want to be the best Rachel I can be, and the first step is accepting me, not trying to change me. I’m not going to say, “when I lose weight, I will…” – I’m going to stop putting things off and do them. I’m beautiful, and I’m fat, and I like women, and I panic. And that’s 100% okay because it’s part of me. These qualities don’t define me, but they are intrinsically me. I am going to be more confident in myself and my body, and I’ll flirt and date and hopefully meet someone wonderful who I love and who loves me back.

    I’ve talked a few times about this musical memoir I wrote. It’s happening 1 week from Monday – January 9th. 7 pm. I’m sharing my story with mental illness. I’m going to be scared shitless. I might even invite my mother. My boss is coming. It’s fucking scary, but I’m doing it. ( for tickets, if you’re in NYC).

    I leave you with this song of self-love from the revival of the musical “The Color Purple” that closes on 1/8.

    “I believe I have in me everything that I need to live a bountiful life…I’m beautiful, and I’m here.”

    Happy New Year, Autostraddle!

    • “Also, I want to be unashamed of who I am – a lesbian, a plus size woman, a person who lives with mental illness.”

      As someone who is all of these things too and constantly struggles with not only accepting but also celebrating who I am, I am so with you on this.

    • Yes yes yes ditto on this sentence! “Also, I want to be unashamed of who I am – a lesbian, a plus size woman, a person who lives with mental illness. Carrie Fisher taught me that I should be proud to be who I am, and that I have no reason to hide these things.” Well written, and a wonderful sentiment and thing to strive for. I am also a plus sized lesbian, and I have an anxiety disorder. Definitely taking your words to heart!

  4. I don’t think I’ve ever made a proper resolution, but I have to agree with the fact that this year has been one huge pile of fuck-right-off. Earlier in the year I began suffering chronic pain and illness that developed into chronic migraines so bad I couldn’t look at lights or screens for weeks (try figuring out how to fill your free time when you can’t use your eyes for literally anything, I have no idea how people do it). I’m meant to be finishing my PhD in 2017. Most of this has lead me to sitting around feeling awfully sorry for myself, eating whole pizzas in one sitting, refusing to leave the house, and allowing myself to grow sicker by sinking into the hole.

    I guess I want to get out of the hole. Floss. Stretch. Get plenty of vitamin C. Go outside like a Baz Luhrmann song. Floss. Eat

    • Hello, fellow PhD-finisher and migraine sufferer! My migraines aren’t near as bad, or frequent, so I can’t imagine how awful that must be. I hope that as the year has gone on, they’ve gotten better? Anything in particular that triggers them?

      I’m also meaning to finish my PhD, though, in early 2017. I’ve been ABD for an embarrassingly long time, stuck in a circle of “I’m so close, but it’s taken so long and that’s shitty, and now I feel bad/embarrassed and do nothing”. Which is beyond unhelpful, but there it is. Oh, and if you want to see a super fun (and by fun I mean…fucking awful) mix of embarrassment, awkwardness, rage and self-loathing – have someone ask how my PhD is going (bonus for someone who has never done one/attempted to do so and they tack on “why isn’t it done yet?”).

      So! I’m right there with you, trying to Phinish (speaking of, have you found the support forum PhinisheD? The layout is super dated, but the support can be quite good!).

      You’ve got this!!!

      • @femmehawke hello, I like your bowtie. The migraine thing is actually quite new, within the last few months. Mostly I get trippy visual auras without headache, and my vision shakes continuously even when the trippy thing isn’t happening. Sometimes it gives me a headache, sometimes it just makes me nauseous. Lights, screens, things that twinkle/blink, images that move too fast… all that is bad, ha. I won’t know exactly what’s up until I visit the neurologist in January.
        As for the PhD, I think I’m on track. Good luck with your work this year! I know it can really weigh heavy on you sometimes. I have until September 2017, so hopefully I can sort this mess. If not… I guess I can embrace my inner hipster and write the whole thing on a typewriter?

    • I hope you take all the Self Love steps that you need to, to do the things that will help you to climb out of the pit. Also that you find a treatment that works for your migraines. I really empathise since I had them too, for years. My cure was definitely hard core and hopefully unnecessary these days.

      Good Luck with your studies. If long distance hugs are OK with you, please accept these for New Year.

    • I don’t get migraines so I don’t presume to understand what you’re going through, but if I had to fill my time while not using my eyes for anything I would listen to podcasts. A few of my favs are The TED Radio Hour, Radiolab and Stuff You Missed in History Class. Best of luck for 2017!

  5. I often make resolutions like ‘floss more’ and ‘learn to drive stick shift.’ So far, not bad.

    Honestly my only resolution so far is to use my fucking health insurance, because we’re paying for it, so I’ve booked appointments with the eye doctor so I can get contacts and take up boxing maybe? And also massages and possibly acupuncture. Also, having a commitment to rest! I need to not be doing things all the time! And like making the time to do shit like yoga and reading and other things that are restive but also harder than just napping.

    That’s pretty much it, we’re hanging out with our friends and their awesome kiddo for New Years, so probs there will be delicious food and an early bedtime. 2017. WOO.

  6. First of all, I hope all your resolutions work out for you. Especially Erin’s.

    And I’ve stopped making proper resolutions because I’m a huge procrastinator and hardly ever follow through and then just end up feeling guilty and more depressed. But ideally my 2017 would include me saving up some money to get my facial hair lasered off, exercising some more and maybe eating less dairy. Also, I’d like to start drawing again.

  7. Never been a resolution person, for many, many reasons, but I think one of my biggest goals is to learn to say no to my fears… to scale back just how much I let them influence me.

    I don’t think I’m ever going to be a less fearful or anxious person. I have been a Chuckie Finster for most of my life and I come from a long line of anxious people, so nature or nurture, it’s ingrained in me. I am afraid of change and of responsibility and of failure and of other people. I think it’s likely that I always will be, but even if it’s not, right now I’m not even close to a post-fear lifestyle yet.

    But I would like to be able to acknowledge those fears and make decisions without weighting them so much… without letting the fears be the deciding factor in what I do. I still need to listen to them but I need to make room at the table of emotional decision-makers for hope and happiness.

    I’d also like to read at least two books a month and write a little bit every day. Those used to be big parts of my life and I miss reading and writing regularly. I think mostly I’d like to find some kind of balance between all the things I love to do. There are so many. I never expected to be the kind of person who insists there aren’t enough hours in the day. But now I am! There are so many things I would love to do, that I do love doing! And I think maybe I need to learn to accept that I can’t do all of them 100%, but I can figure out what’s most important and how to prioritize so that I am as happy as possible with the time I do have.

    • First, I just want to say that I love that you compare yourself to Chuckie Finster but also I hope you are successful in learning to manage your fears and anxieties :) ALSO, I totally feel you on trying to prioritize all the things that you enjoy doing and that are important to you-I struggle with that as well, and it’s SO HARD! If you learn of any good ways to do it, please share your wisdom! Happy New Year!

  8. I’m doing my part to end 2016 on a high note. I’m getting married today! In about 2 hours. So that’s what I’m thinking about for the rest of 2016. I’ll start with resolutions for 2017 on January 1.

  9. First of all I have to tell you that on Christmas Day in our tiny kitchen/diner, in front of our respective parents, my wife had an epic Freudian slip- and I quote;
    “I hope the turkey’s Vagina”
    She meant moist folks, she meant moist.
    ”Twas a glorious Christmas. Truly.

    So New Years resolutions, I will find the time to work on my own projects so I can gradually move away from my dayjob and do something that will not drive me back to the deepest pits of despair. I must do this.

    Wishing you all a happy, healthy and fortuitous new year.

    • SHE SAID WHAT!!!!!!!!!!?

      that’s fucking hilarious thank you SO much for telling that story made my year

      • Apparently my face was a picture. We carried on like it hadn’t happened in true British fashion and then she accidentally prodded my mother in the tit trying to pass her the sprouts…space is limited in our tiny kitchen/diner-Fathers looked on in confusion we all laughed about it…

        • Congratulations for having what sounds like the perfect life{(really genuinely no sarcasm here), I need to type this preemptively cause lack of edit comment option} but really thats like the dream for me to one day be there, have a great year y’all

          • That’s sweet of you to say (likewise no sarcasm intended anywhere here). But umm it’s not perfect – I have a complex relationship with that word…also I have clinical depression, no one wants that. Moments like this do seem pretty perfect. But overall life is just life-with moments of awesome, and moments of awful. I’m grateful for what I have, and for every moment of awesome; I’m working to make myself, and my life better so I can have more of those.
            I hope you get the life you want, I hope it’s perfect for you. Have a great ’17. :)

  10. 1.Get back into Martial Arts
    2.Become Very Fit
    3.Finally speak Arabic in a manner that’s not absolute gibberish, and if that won’t work, become fluent in Spanish
    4.Become Very Good at what I do workwise
    5.Be Brave and proactively fight for what I believe in/against the Death Eaters and Dark Side of the Force.

    I don’t have kids or a partner or great societal/familial expectations thrust upon me, so, actually, I can still try to secretly be a Superhero and do all the things I’ve always thought needed doing.
    I’ve got a few ideas lined up, already.
    Let’s have the courage this year to get them up and running.

  11. Like Riese I also wonder the destiny of my own certain sized house on my certain sized land. But that would mean knowing where I’m going next. Sigh. At least the market’s good?

    I want my alt-meat business to turn profit by May. I’d like to do stand-up for more than the same 16 man comics every week. I’d like to figure out how to make my website less sad looking. Goals!

  12. I’m usually a bit useless when it comes to resolutions, but here we go.

    I’m actually doing something tangible for once! I’m going to try and go vegetarian for January. I know most people do Veganuary, but I decided zero to vegan was too much too fast and I wouldn’t have managed it. So I’m going veggie instead, just to try it out. Hooray!

    I also want to get more involved with the wider LGBTQ+ community. I do the queer thing at university, and I sometimes contribute to stuff online, but I want to do more physical person stuff. I’m hopefully studying abroad in Madrid from September, at a Catholic university (I’m not Catholic, that’s just our only Erasmus partner in Madrid) so I want to get involved on campus if there is a queer thing, and if not I want to find stuff to do in the city itself. Should be fun and exciting! (On a related note, I also resolve to SAVE MONEY this year so I can actually afford to study abroad!)

    And then there are little things: I’d like to learn to read tarot, learn more songs on the guitar and play in public more, read more diversely, procrastinate less, etc. etc. Hopefully at least some of them will actually happen!

    Happy New Year, and good luck to everyone in their resolutions!

  13. I’m sitting at the library with a list of 14 jobs to apply for and so far I’ve made it through two. I think I’m working on goals rather than resolutions. Clearly the job thing is one of them. I made almost double what I’ve ever earned this year, which is still under the poverty line – but it’s very close to it! I somehow figured out how to survive with my living expenses suddenly doubling after a breakup and I’m not quite where I want to be yet but I’m getting there. 2016 was setback after setback but I accomplished so much I never thought possible AND impressed a roomful of cousins and their friends with my professional achievements last week.

    I’m inviting myself along with a not-super-close friend to a queer party full of strangers tomorrow and it’s going to be great because that’s exactly what I wanted to do last year and didn’t get to because ex and drama, and this year it’s going to feature neither. 2017 is the year my book comes out so it’s going to be a good year.

    • I’ve been having a debate about the differences between resolutions/goals/plans. For two of my part time jobs I am suppose to set goals with people, and for some reason it just rubs me the wrong way. I like to make plans and work of follow through, but for some reason have a hard time with goals and resolutions. Maybe it’s more about the journey than the destination? Process not product?

      Also congratulations Nina on having a book that’s coming out! Best wishes for your 2017!

      • Thank you! I think part of it – either way – is being directed to come up with your resolutions/goals/plans/etc. Like, resolutions are a stressful thing I have to come up with to respond to other people’s small talk, but “goals” sound okay? Lots of people seem to like resolutions, though. Whatever works for you! One year I sent a friend a list of about a dozen “New Year’s resolutions” which were things like “buy orange juice” and “write thank-you note to grandma” and he was like, “These aren’t resolutions, this is just a to-do list” but let me tell you, I kept every resolution on my list that year

  14. Will the universe explode if Mey becomes kinder to others? Is this even possible??

    Also, Riese, oh I just want to knit you a comfy universe ( and I don’t even knit) – a comfy universe that would fit you every day.

    Health is my resolution – and whilst my skin heals, I’m just going to call them rope-burns when asked, because it’ll at least be more entertaining that way.

    I’m also going to stick with my gift for my wife, which I am so excited about; I’m going to draw/ paint/collage something from my wife’s garden (not a metaphor) each week in a book together with comments, and a photo from the garden, and then give it to her next Christmas!

    May the best of this year be the worst of the next for all of you…love and wonder!

  15. I want to be kinder to myself. Give myself more time to do the things I love, not what others (or myself) expect of me. I want to travel because I realized it makes me happy. I want to see my friends more often, the ones that really make me feel great. I want to write better, more and I want to start to believe in my abilities, especially in writing. I would really like to have a girlfriend. I want to be honest with myself, accept times of crisis. Aaaand I’m so excited about all my new projects. I really want to change something, to give hope with my activism (this was the first year that I really felt like an activist and next year I want to improve this work). I want to be radical, loving and never stop believing in a better world. Solidarity makes me happy, talking to people who are angry and hopeful makes me happy. (god that sounds cheesy). I want to fight, with words and actions. I want to see people helping other people.

  16. I want to start a strength training regimen; hopefully my Mom’s old barbells are still lying around somewhere.
    I’m going to call or text my grandparents once a week at minimum.
    I’m finally going to join my campus GSA, or find some other progressive group to participate in.
    I’m going to start keeping a daily journal.
    I’m going to cook more often.

  17. There are probably better places to ask this, but does anyone have any good feminist books to recommend that are critical of marriage? Just having a lot of annoyed feelings this week with a lot of coworkers getting engaged.

  18. I don’t normally make resolutions but this year ends with another relationship-like thing ending badly after going nowhere. I keep making bad decisions because I’m lonely, so this year I’m drawing the Hermit card and living by it. I’m going to turn loneliness into solitude and learn to be happy with and by myself. A lot of wonderful writing has come out of solitude, so I’m going to go there and see what I find.

    That’s not to say that I’ll not be social, or look after my friendships, but I’m not looking for a relationship and if one comes along they can wait till the end of the year if they have any regard for me at all.

  19. I dunno if I will keep my resolution since it’s getting a little less safe(even in a place like LA); but I plan to be more visibly trans/queer and Jewish(but not in the oy vey way, but more in the fucking white people is why we can’t have nice things way). Like many here, I also need to save more, not just put in my checking account, but my actual savings account that earns me interest. I also want to be a bit more decisive. My last resolution is to eat less bread(dr’s orders) and more fruits.

    So, back to the bags for a second, anyone know of a good place that has fair priced, but nice looking laptop messenger bags? I have been indecisive all week on finding a new one and mines is slowly falling apart. I feel like my choices are spend the extra money to rebuy the one I have(really like it) or something in that price range, or get something different for half the price, but a little more generic. I dunno.

    How has everyone’s week being going? Everyone have a good holiday? My oldest friend is home from back east and spent a few nights with the person. It was good and bad, as it’s nice to catch up, but also ugh, cause the whole I’m non-binary and don’t want to be gendered is new to my friend still(after 3+ years of being out). Had to nerve to say but these queer friends you have, they see you as male right, cause that’s what the world sees you as, and I was like no, they see me as non-binary queer(who at times is trans woman aligned). Didn’t get it, but said would have my back if people give me shit for being who I am. So, the good and the bad there.

    Hopefully everyone is going to have a safe a positive new year? I plan to spend it with some queer and trans folks out in Long Beach, so at least I know I will be among queers who aren’t on the alt-right. Oh, also add not reading the comment section of the Advocate as part of my resolution. I made that mistake last night, but thankfully was at a bar drinking a gin based drink with vanilla powder bean powder on top to forget what I just read.

    I spent Sunday with my family walking El Matador State Beach near the LA-Ventura Boarder. It was lovely time.
    Some images from the day.

    Thank you for viewing and reading my page. Have a positive weekend and New Years!

    • Those are gorgeous.

      I just ordered a new laptop bag from ebags, and I thought they had a pretty good selection at a variety of price points! I got a backpack from them last year and it has held up beautifully.

  20. I’ve always had a bit of fatalistic streak so I’ve never made a New Years resolution or even given up anything for Lent. That one time I said I’d give up having sex with other people doesn’t count because I was not into sex with other people at that age and it was more to get a reaction from my fried. >_>

    More on the fatalistic streak I never dreamed for things, I purposely gave up on dreams and optimism before I finished loosing my baby teeth. If you don’t hope for things you won’t have to feel disappointed when those things don’t pan our. If you don’t have dreams they can’t be crushed or taken from you etc.

    Some part of me thinks kid me needed to do that survive, the other parts think that’s when I doomed myself. Because I feel kinda doomed like I’m in hole of my own making (from not planning/having any hopes or aspirations for the future and losing my gourd trying to make up for that) and I’m never going to get out of it.

    Just as I got my head on steady, dealt with some of the doubts and shit that were plaguing me, making it hard for me to move forward. My body decided to come unscrewed and it just unglued everything. I began responding like a child that expected remand instead of accommodation.
    This fall was probably my last chance, I blew it and I won’t be getting another one.

    I don’t know how to start over from this point because the nature of how my body has fucked me over prevents me from the few jobs I had access to and could depend on.
    And the meds to manage it aren’t panning out.

    Somehow I’m not panicking, but I’m also the person who’s still alive when I’m supposed to be dead. Also have dragged the dead weight of my body with just my arms to get help.

    Life and people can be utter shits but any day I’m alive, get to pet the pups, eat food and all sorts of other stuff is worth it.

    If I’m going to make a resolution it could just be to survive, but that’s just something I do. Some instinct in me that overrides good sense and politeness.
    So instead I will also resolve to help the people in my life with the life skills they lack, like cooking and meal planning. And to not chicken out with any meet up plans my mind hatches because I fear the responsibility of leader-like positions.
    People need people and in the days of ahead I believe there will be much need.

    On a lighter note everyone loves my congri, I have mastered the glory that is pull apart bread and my taco night was a hit.

    • My pull apart bread never pulls apart. It’s better put together than I am haha. Well I hope you have a better year. I want to say something positive but I can think of anything ?….. New games are being released! So many good titles! Um….. man I’m so bad at this. I’ll stick to finding new seasonings for you to try ?

      • Did you do it in a loaf pan? Because that’s the hard way that was too complicated for me. So I just used an 8″ cake round pan, made the dough into like 15 balls and placed them in the cake pan like precious babies.

        Oh and I did something crazy to make the chicken tender in a shorter amount of time.
        I cooked them in a covered pot on a low heat with the lime and lemon juice they marinated in. After 20 minutes I was able to those chicken pieces with spoon.
        It turned out okay flavor wise but the lemon over powered my poor lime.
        Next time I will have 2 limes on hand. Maybe some tomato.

        My life is mess but I have some blessings. Don’t worry to hard.
        But more seasonings yes, suggest them to me.As long as I have well stocked spice rack I can make a scrumptious meal out of an egg and a stale heel of bread.
        My people learned to make a party out of eating arthropods xD

    • Helping your friends is not insignificant, domestic and life skills are undervalued in our society.

      I may not know specifically what you’ve been through but I am in a place of trying to reverse the long-entrenched habit of assuming I don’t have a future. I don’t think hope needs to be bright and glorious. I don’t think you even necessarily need hope, when stubbornness and saying ‘what the hell’ will do.

  21. I need to charge my old smashed up iPhone because that’s where I wrote my 2016 Intentions but I’m pretty sure it boiled down to Be A Hobbit and it still stands for 2017.

    I want to eat real food, support local makers, get lots of sleep and really nail down my hair and scalp care routine. I got a new facial moisturizer for Christmas and it’s only been five days and I’m in love.

  22. Go on friend dates with new people in my city. Relearn French and take advantage of how close France is to the UK. Get more sleep.

  23. I’m graduating high school in 2017 and I quess my resolution is to figure out what to do next. I feel so much pressure because for my parents it’s obvious that I will go to college like everyone else. Small part of me wants to have that experience but I don’t feel like it? I’m just confused and kind of scared.
    So I wanna be brave. I wanna do my thing and without caring what others think. I want to go to theater more often because that’s something I began to love in 2016. I want to read more books. I want to believe in myself. I want to truly love myself. I want to go out of my comfort zone more often. I want to be closer to nature. I want to meet someone.
    And I wanna pass my exams in May, pretty please?

  24. I know this has been the shittiest of years for countless reasons but on a very selfish and personal note it has been the best one I have ever had. For the first time since before I was a teen I seem to be managing my bipolar disorder successfully, I have the ups and the downs and the anxiety but I have the skills, the meds and the support to cope with it now. The past 4 years of my life were spent completely checked out, I was unable to work, study, socialise … anything. Then this year I finished my first year of uni, I started volunteering for an advice charity and they sent me on a training programme (so I have a reference for my CV, a highly valued qualification and an actual shot at getting a job this year), I have been able to spend time with my wonderful friends and I came out!

    As far as resolutions go, this year I really want to maintain this balance that I have found, to keep myself healthy and well (keep up my yoga practice and eat and exercise regularly), work on balancing work/school/life, get a job that actually pays, finish my second year of uni and go on a date (this one scares me).

    I also want to try and meet new people. I love my friends and want to keep spending as much time with them but I am the only queer person in our group and they are all married, whereas I have just come out and I would like to meet some women that I can hang out with, do fun things with, maybe go on that date with. I do think it will be hard to meet people here (I’m in Northern Ireland), especially as I struggle to force myself out of my comfort zone, but at least I will have some awkward fun trying new things!

    • It’s not selfish to celebrate having good, especially when it’s something you had to work for.
      Congratulations on finding a balance and all the stuff that has come with it for you.

    • Yo that is not selfish at all to say that you’ve had a good year. And seriously hi five for having bipolar under control from one person with bipolar disorder to another. I hope you’re able to keep that balance going into the new year!!

    • Congratulations!! You sound as though you’ve earned every good thing that’s come your way this year. Best wishes for ’17. Also good luck with widening your friend group to include some rainbow friends.

  25. I’m not usually one for resolutions, but this year, I’ve decided to make a few. The first one is to connect with more members of my family on my dad’s side, as I could use the support from their liberal attitudes. I will also be looking for a new job, because I hate my current one intensely. I will also keep going to therapy and working on my mental health. I will move out of my parents’ house and also my hometown. I will actually post something on my blog. I will throughly clean out my room and donate clothes I never wear (most of which seem to be gifts from relatives and dress clothes I keep saving “just in case”). I will be as unapologetically queer as I can possibly be, and I will figure out and try out new names and pronouns.

    More optional ones include: actually finish a book (I think switching to ebooks might help); start writing down my stories about queer alien-fairies, finish watching Star Trek TOS, Voyager, and Deep Space 9; learn how draw; be more tech-savvy; relearn French; actually crochet and get better at it.

  26. Last year, around x-mas time, I came out to my mother. It wasn’t so much a New Year’s Resolution, but something that I told myself needed to be done so that I can live my best life.

    My mom is coming to terms and acceptance. Slowly, but surely. (baby steps)

    This coming year, again, not an exact NYR, but, if things continue to go well with my partner, I’d very much like to introduce her to my mother/family. I’ve never taken a partner home before. This will be huge.

    Hoping for the best for everyone, everywhere. Happy New Year, AS. <3

    • I wish you all of the success in your future introduction! As a person who has been out forever, I can attest that the significant other introduction might actually be scarier. I mean, I know my mom will like anyone I bring home, but, what if my person doesn’t love my mom?

      You’ll be fine, though. Baby steps are still steps, and they usually lead to something great. Babies know where all the cool shit is.

  27. Earlier this week I made a list of goals I’d like to accomplish in 2017 or at least work towards accomplishing. My resolution is to start working on that list, continue to enjoy work and give it my all, continue to work on speaking up for myself/being more of a leader vocally, to write more fiction, and to have more brave moments. I’d also love to get out there and start dating again.

    2016, despite being shitty in a lot of regards, was actually a fairly good year for me. I got a full time job that really started changing how I’m able to plan ahead/take care of business, etc., and thanks to said job, things are going quite well. My outlook is better than it’s been in years, too (though to be fair, I also found out I’m getting a raise already in Jan., and my awesome boss sent me a PS4 with the new Final Fantasy game as a Christmas bonus haha, that probably has a lot to do with my improved outlook). I’m definitely on the right track for 2017 to be an awesome year. I hope I can pull it off.

    Happy New Year, everyone!

  28. I had to do some quick research, but now that I’ve verified that the “male parts” in Work From Home do not require any dancing skills, my resolution is to grab one of those spots in Riese’s video. So I guess I’ll start working out.

      • Me, too! You picked an outstanding group of stars. (Although if they’re all in relationships come filming time, I respectfully request that they bring along single sisters, cousins, or friends.) And who doesn’t want to hang out in a pole barn every once in a while?

  29. I’m going to wear my vulnerabilities on the outside for once. I can’t think of a time when being guarded has actually protected me, so…

    Also, I’m going to let more mistakes happen, get angry sooner, and forgive as quickly as I can; not for anyone’s benefit but my own. I’m great at apologies, and I’ll get better at them still because I will fail. Often. I will ask for second chances. I will give second chances to those who ask, and walk away from those who don’t. I’m going to be generous, but not if it isn’t wanted.

    I’m going to give more, and I will expect more in return; faster, too. So basically, I’m going to lose my fucking patience. I’m going to overwhelm folks with all that I can be right away, and if they can handle it, you’re welcome, if not, leave.

    I used to believe I had time, but 2016 reminded me of how little of it is left. I’ve got to spend the time I have left giving all I have left to give. I can’t take any of this with me. Neither can you.

    • New New Year’s resolution: be less petty. Or more. Fuck, I can’t decide. Just be the perfect amount of petty. And stop telling people that you are the good kind of lesbian. They already know, apparently.

    • “I’m going to give more, and I will expect more in return; faster, too. So basically, I’m going to lose my fucking patience. I’m going to overwhelm folks with all that I can be right away, and if they can handle it, you’re welcome, if not, leave.” This is a really beautiful sentiment, and one that I am hoping to live by, too! Thank you for finding the words and sharing them <3

      • Courtney, I hope you overwhelm the fuck out of everyone so that they can see how amazing you are quickly, fall madly in love with you, and then put you in the lifestyle you deserve to become accustomed to: the lifestyle of the adored and respected. Happy New Year to you!

  30. Since my self esteem took a nasty hit near the end, I am just going to love myself more. I was always putting others before myself so it’s hard for me to love myself if I feel like no one else does. So I’ve already started by working out and eating healthy again. I also want to take care of my mental health and take control of my depression better. So that will be interesting. Instead of making friends, I think I will try out just being more social and work on my communication skills.

    I have this positive feeling about this coming year. Maybe there will be more opportunities that I will be willing to go for. All I know is that I’m tired of questioning myself all the time. We only live once and I want to enjoy my life even when things go wrong.

    And maybe I will spend less and less time on here and try to actually be productive in school. I got a 4.0 GPA and got out of academic probation in one semester when all my advisors scoffed at me when I told them I could do it. I don’t want to go back to being an underachiever. Plus, I just don’t feel like I have much to offer. Sometimes it feels like I don’t belong in the community because I just don’t fit in. I’m too plain or weird or maybe I’ve spent so much time around straight people, that I have no idea what I’m doing here since it’s all still foreign to me. I went from being biphobic and transphobic to wanting to learn more about others and create positive changes thanks to this site. I still like what AS has to offer my brain so I will keep coming back. I still look forward to reading the posts and offering a listening ear.

    Happy Friday peeps.

    • I recently met a professor (whose name escapes me) who came into our German Lit class to discuss her book about experiences she endured as a child during the Holocaust. After her discussion, she said something that struck me as both frightening and inspiring. She said that she believed that the thing that saved her life was a combination of luck and money, which made her sad because most people aren’t rich or lucky. But what struck me was that she said she believed it was wrong for people to try to fit in, or blend, or assimilate. She thought that was dangerous because when people don’t stick out, they aren’t noticed, and when terrible things happen, nobody will care.

      I don’t know if I agree because sticking out seems to have killed plenty of queers, especially QTPOC. Blending has its own safety. That said, I could see the logic in her statement. You feel different like you don’t belong, well, I’ve felt that in queer spaces too. You are different; so am I. But we do belong here because we belong everywhere. That’s the danger. Letting yourself believe that there are spaces where you can’t be makes it easier to stick to places where you blend, but when it comes to rounding up people based on some perceived similarity, that is where the danger lies. They are easy to find because they are with everyone else who looks like them.

      If you don’t feel like you belong with us, that is precisely why we need you. We can never become a homogenous group that all follows the same beat. We have to be weirdos within the group of weirdos until everyone can see that nobody is really the same, and therefore nobody is that different.

      God, I hope that made sense. Sometimes when I type a lot, I forget to make sense.

      • Actually you made perfect sense. This was something I needed to hear for a very long time. Maybe my need to fit in come from years of being bullied or being the black sheep, but where ever this need stems from, all I really wanted was a place to be myself. I am just used to being labeled as something negative so I ended up craving that feeling of belonging. I got tired of standing out. It gets lonely and frustrating. But you are right about blending in being dangerous. I never thought of being wierd as a positive thing, nor did i ever think that being different contributes in a different way to the community. Your words gave me a nice fuzzy feeling. We do belong here even if we can’t see it sometimes. Thank you for such kind and insightful words. I’m going to share it on tumblr.

        • I understand that loneliness better than I care to admit, but I’ve never felt lonelier than when I don’t stand out, and I’m a die-hard introvert. I want to be seen, despite an overwhelming fear of interaction and possible rejection, I need to be noticed. We all do. And the best way to do that is to be the truest version of you.

          It’s odd how insistent people can be about being out, and yet we can feel like somehow there is a right way to be out and queer. You can be queer, but Bi scares people, or we’ll showcase queer people, but not the ones that are less attractive. You know, let’s just keep the Ruby Roses of the world front and center but ignore the short, no-cool-tatts-having, glasses-wearing, beer-gut-having, older queers; they aren’t click-bait.

          Don’t let anyone’s idea of ideal mess with your self-image, Avawn. You’re perfect because you are the only one of your kind. I’m glad to offer my support because I want us all to be seen as individuals.

          P.S. Congratulations on the 4.0! Keep making climbing out of despair look easy. You’re my hero.

    • “I was always putting others before myself so it’s hard for me to love myself if I feel like no one else does.” I just reached the exact same conclusion like two days ago, and I am doing the very slow, difficult, and intentional work of learning how to put myself first, how to care for myself like I care for others, and how to extend my love and care only to people who are willing to extend theirs back to me. I’m really glad you wrote this, because seeing someone else say it made me realize that taking care of myself is important, so thanks. Happy happy new year to you!

  31. I want to move forward with better work habits that don’t involve all-nighters or (too much) procrastination. And also figure out how to not be very lonely and hang out with more people after graduating this spring. Do nothing less often, maybe go out on a date or something.

  32. Oh, Carmen, I love yours.

    The big thing I’m thinking about right now is maybe taking sex off the table for the next year. I tend to get real emotionally attached to people I’m having sex with (and in the cases where it’s more like, “meh, this is fine” why bother really?) 2016 started with me getting my heart broken, and is ending that way too. So it seems like a good idea to take a step back and be more careful about who I give my heart to.

  33. I want to have confidence, or at least some sense that I am capable enough to create a life that I enjoy. I’m hoping this next year will involve me getting accepted to the grad program I’m applying to and moving back to portland for that program and going on with that life and seeing where it takes me. But if I don’t get accepted… I don’t have a backup plan, I’ve put all my energy, effort, and dreams into this plan, and I don’t have a clue what I would do. I may or may not move to portland anyway, it depends on if I can find a job and apartment that would be good, but like what sort of job. How do I do what I want to do through this program if I don’t get in? What would that look like?
    There was a lot of change and turbulence in my life this year, a lot of situations that seemed endless and hopeless. But I grew a lot and even if this next year is as uncertain I hope I’ll find ways to stabilize and grow like I have this year. It’s going to be a lot of NEW.
    Tomorrow I’ll continue my NYE tradition of doing a movie marathon by myself and cooking a wonderful dinner! Although my plan for dinner involves beans sprouts and so far 2/3 stores didn’t have any and I’m really hoping the third will cause they are pretty essential! NYE is my favorite holiday!

  34. This post and all the comments are inspiring and wonderful.

    I don’t always make resolutions but I’m going to this year, as I’ve had a lot of time reflecting over the holidays. I’m trying to make them as concrete as possible.

    I’ve realised lately that both my mental and physical health gave been really impacted by poor sleep habits. My plan is to try build a better bedtime routine which will include a) not sleeping with my iPad, b) reading before sleep, and c) wherever possible doing something to help my next morning go smoothly such as packing lunch.

    Once I’ve got this working, I’ll look at trying to build in healthier meals (rather than vegan junk all the time!) and some exercise. I’ve finally realised I don’t need to do everything at once!!

  35. Pretty much all of Carmen’s, love it! Especially the not trading pain for a lack of conflict. Ooof, do I do that way too much…
    I want to be more visible (this sweet queer deer shirt, YDY and Bi Bi Bi pins are helping!). More myself, instead of what people think I am, or should be, or trying to conform to their image of me. Not shying away and quieting my voice because it makes people uncomfortable. I need to rethink relationships where I feel like I have to hide parts of me for fear of being judged or actually being judged, as has been the case. Though, I also recognize that whether I’m judged or not, the fearing of it still says something. I need to do things for me, putting myself first more often instead of being a ‘people pleaser’ (to gain approval and/or avoid conflict).
    I’m going to move, eat, and ‘do’ with more thought and intention, just for me and my own mental health more than anything. I’m going to draw and read more, hobbies that I’ve let slip for things that are much less productive and fulfilling. I’ve also just ordered two tarot decks (and some books) to facilitate deeper conversations with myself. I picked up the Wild Unknown, because, swoon; it makes me feel energetic and light. And, The Wooden Tarot, because the artwork/imagery of that one, I felt it in my guts.
    2017 is going to be a good year; I think my motto (would it be a motto? Phrase, maybe? Word salad?) for the year is ‘brave toaster’, something I read (and adored) in one of the first autostraddle articles I’d ever read.

    Happy NYE Eve! Here’s to all of you, all the other brave toasters!

    • That’s an awesome resolution! I’m with you on the “be visible as myself” thing. That’s one of my goals as well that I’ve been struggling with this past year.

      It’s so easy to get caught up in the visions other see us as or that we think we should be viewed as. My last girlfriend liked to go on a crusade about how I needed to “find myself”– mostly due the fact that she didn’t care for the real me (she didn’t care for my butch/boi qualities, basically). It took me about six months after we broke up to realize that I already very much knew who I am/was. I just lacked the strength at the time to showcase my true self and to tell others (like her) that I wasn’t interested in changing who I am/was.

      It’s a tough journey, but you’ve definitely made the first huge, important step. Go on, be that brave toaster, and you’ll be awesome!

      • Thank you! This made me smile (yay, smiles!).

        The “find yourself” or “I feel like I don’t know you anymore”…so rough. It’s often code for “you’re not who I think you should be/what I’m used to, so…”. It doesn’t help that I’m currently partnered with a man who is not always the most supportive (a lot of insecurity, “you’ll just decide you don’t like men anymore, you’ll leave me for a woman!”). I lean more heavily towards ‘tomboy femme’, but have also rocked dresses and skirts (but no heels, because I can’t walk in them; I enjoy walking), and more recently have been dapper-ing it up with ties and bowties; so, I’m often met with “this isn’t how you used to dress, do you want to be a dude?” (one statement, so many problems. Also, I look killer in a bowtie, just sayin’). I’m sorry that it took me some time to filter through all the cultural and social BS and ‘training’ that taught me what I should wear because of my presumed biological parts?

        Annnnnnd now I’m just ranting/rambling. Ahem. Thank you again, fellow brave toaster! You do you, go forth and be awesome! *cue inspirational trumpets, or something*

        • Yeaaah, I’ve totally been there too. “If I wanted to date someone who looked like a dude, I would date a dude!” It’s really hard to know what to say to that when that person is someone you really care about. There’s only so many times you can say, “But I’m not mimicing a dude– I’m just me!” Eventually, they just kind of start rolling their eyes every time you say the words “I’m just me!”

          Even single, I deal with that attitude on a daily basis from my family. It’s rough. My sister (who I live with) is very supportive of the LGBT community, but she thinks that buying men’s clothes/cologne is “taking the dyke thing too far”. “It’s not a ‘dyke thing’, though,” I tell her. “It’s just who I am, and what feels right.” Then she just starts rolling her eyes at me.

          We live in a society where gender constraints are just so rigid. Most people don’t even realize that the only reason they’re rigid is because things have been that way for so long, most can’t imagine an alternative.

          One of the goals on my checklist o’ things to do in 2017 includes continuing to buy men’s clothes/cologne and “upping my butch game” so to speak lol. It sounds silly I know, but I gotta stick with what feels right to me– regardless of what people say and how they see me. I haven’t been brave enough to wear a men’s suit or a tie/bowtie yet, though I really, really want to. I’m so friggen’ curious if I can pull off dapper. I’m going to a wedding in April. I think I may start with a nice vest and see how that feels.

          Thank you for your encouragement! <3 Trumpets are all kinds of awesome. I need to haul some with me when I feel my inner "fuck the haters" voice slipping.

          • How fun would that be, to respond to some hater BS with a few victorious notes on a trumpet, and then dramatic exit! Or an air horn if you just really don’t have the time to deal.

            Ugh. That “if one looks like a dude…”, I’ve been grilled on “would you/why would you date a masculine presenting woman, why not just date a dude??”. Also sorry that your sister is the gender/sexuality police, apparently? Sad potatoes. Would she be open to a discussion to at least nix the eye rolling? That ‘response’ really bothers me! It can be very hurtful.
            As for dapper-ing it up, go for it (within your comfort and safety level). It was a bit more fitted than a typical men’s suit, but the first time I wore a suit and tie was for a big work presentation that I was super terrified of (killed it though!). I’ve gotten a lot of compliments at work (federal government, Canada) from people I’ve never spoken with before when I wear a bowtie. And occasionally, random people on the street. So, it could be a positive experience? A wedding does sound like a good time too, since everyone is more dressed up than normal.
            Whatever you decide to wear, and when, at least you’ll be doing right by yourself *victory trumpets*

    • yesssssss! my resolution this year was “more real talk” and i did okay! this year: not holding any of it back.

      • I’m not usually star-struck, but I *may* have done what could best be described as an open-mouthed super happy awe-struck dog smile at my computer because you (Carmen) replied!

  36. I have a rolling list in my head of things I want to do especially now that I’ve moved to the Twin Cities – eat better, manage my money, get more organized, stuff like that – but as we hit 2017 I realized it all has to do with one thing. One key element.

    So my resolution for the year is as follows: live life day by day. As it comes. Be patient with yourself. It’ll be okay.

    I can be very impatient – especially with work and life changes. With a new job in a new field in a new state (yay public media in Minnesota!) with a new living situation (yay closing the distance with my girlfriend and her cat!), it’s fair to say I’ve definitely felt impatient at times.

    But I have to remember – I’m still new at this. All of it. And that’s okay. I won’t know all the answers, and I’ll screw up, but it’s okay. I have to live and learn and go on from there.

    Easier said than done, I know (especially as someone with anxiety/depression). But if I take things a day at a time, I think it’ll happen.

    I wish you all luck in the new year! Please remember you are loved and valid no matter what anyone says. ❤

    (PS. Self? Yeah hi. The ring can wait. Until you’re both ready…)

  37. I’m going to do the Yearly 101 List of Goals that my friend once suggested to me. I’m terrible at it, I never get all 101…but its kind of nice, in the end, to go: LOOK AT WHAT I FINISHED?

    I did a 10 Things I Succeeded Doing This Year post today, actually!

    …But this years real goals are, perhaps, a little grandiose. I don’t really think I’ll get most done but if you don’t try…

    1) I want to finish the novel I’m working on to the point that I’m satisfied in it and submit it somewhere and at least submit to at least a couple agents (though it terrifies me)

    2) This time next year I would like to at least be going through the first steps for buying a house–and start considering fostering pending on buying a house/stability.

    3) My goal is to go on at least one date every other month. This is unlikely as I’m terrible at actually going on dates. I’ve been playing with different apps but not doing quite there yet. Maybe I should write a personal “Techy-writer. Enjoys writing love letters, quiet lazy days near the woods, and international travel. Future goals include selling queer fantasy stories and starting a queer family. Would love mutual egging on to wilder and more awesome goals”

    4) Join some sort of exercise group… aerial gymnastics? Dancing (badly)? who knows

    • Congrats on achieving all that in 2016– that’s really awesome! And thanks for sharing your post, by the way. It’s inspired me to do something similar for myself (though it’ll likely be a much smaller list lol).

      • Thank you!

        Everyone’s list will be different. I’ve had years where it felt like ‘welp, I’m not dead’ was the only thing I could put down with confidence. Still, even though some years feel like stretches–sometimes it helped me to not spiral to go “no, look, not EVERYTHING was shit this year–I managed THESE THINGS and THESE THINGS MIGHT BE SMALL but they were mine”.

        I hope you have a out-of-the-park 2017!

        • I’m having a really hard time this year with goals for the next, but I like the idea of celebrating what I did accomplish this past year- surviving (instead of the failures).

          • Sometimes goals can seem a little too big (or, for me, some years they make me feel a little to audacious–surprising taking of risk, and impudent–how could I even say I want such a thing? horrors!)

            For that, or any other reason, maybe you don’t want or need goals. Or maybe you want to keep them close to the chest (nurturing a few secrete goals isn’t so bad, they’re YOURS after all). Do what feels right to you. Stretch as much, or as little, as you want around the upcoming year. Sometimes you just can’t.

            But I’m so glad you survived the year–and I hope your next year ends up with lovely pockets of joy that make this time next year with 10x the amount to celebrate.

  38. For 2017 I want to learn to knit hats to give to all my friends, to study hard for my Masters and be a better girlfriend to my love.

  39. My New Years Resolution is to try and break away from all my cultural and cognitive biases so I can really embrace myself as a queer person.

    If there’s one positive thing that’s come from the rise of He-who-must-not-be-named, it’s that it’s expedited the process of transitioning from just acceptance of my gayness to being fully out and starting to immerse myself in the queer culture.

    I’ve quickly learned that to do that, I need to immerse myself in other cultures that have been marginalized and genuinely begin the process of educating myself. Growing up in a small, Christian, conservative town, up until a few months ago, I was content with being moderate and silently supportive on those issues while I struggled internally. The election made it readily apparent to me that being silent was condemnation and that I basically need to unlearn everything I knew growing up.

    So that’s my goal for the next year because hopefully as I learn more, I can use my experiences to dialogue with more moderate trump voters who don’t believe that his election is hurtful to minorities.

    First stop: giving up Chick-fil-a. Sounds silly, but I grew up on that food and man I love it. Even when I initially came out, I justified continuing to eat there because I would only eat it when I went home (so 2-3 times a year) so my patronage wouldn’t financially make a difference to the anti-LGBT organizations they support, and also as a Christian I thought the good work they did trumped that. I realize that’s the wrong way of thinking but of course as I realize this they’re about to open one up a mile down the road from me. Gotta give it up.


    • ok the best chicken i ever had was at a franchise called Raising Cane (Cane is the name of the guy’s dog heh). I don’t know what their politics are but the chicken is good.

  40. 1. Dress better

    2. Never go clothes shopping with my sister again

    3. Get out of Leesburg

    4. I’ve been putting “develop social life” here for four years straight, and that has yet to materialize, so maybe I should switch it with “therapy”

    • Last year my resolution was to leave the house more but I discovered that was too expensive, like, I can’t just go to coffee shops in the hopes I’ll cultivate friendships because I can’t afford to drink coffee every day

      This resolution also directly led to about five different episodes of public crying, so

      • Four of those five crying in public episodes happened while I lived in Portland, so unfortunately I doubt that leaving Leesburg will magic me up a social life.

        The annoying thing about my personality is how it tends to follow me where ever I go

  41. “develop an entirely different personality” is probably too much to ask of a resolution is basically what I’m trying to say

  42. 1. Immerse myself in the comfort of the queer community whenever I am feeling down–like this past week when I was sick, I watched all things Sanvers and Wayhaught and Carmilla on the interwebs and read every AS article I could.

    2. Make more time for my chosen family.

    3. Wear that damn mouth guard.

    Happy New Year, y’all. We will get through this together.

  43. I could probably write a huge paragraph of things I want to do better in my life, but here are the two main ones:
    1. Get back into the habit of trying to use as much Japanese in a sentence as possible.
    When I first arrived here, even if the rest of the sentence was English, if I knew one word or phrase in Japanese, it’d get thrown in.
    Now, I just get shy and feel stupid about my lack of knowledge, and rely too heavily on people putting themselves out there to attempt to speak English.
    I wanna try as hard with them as they do with me!

    2. Stop feeling guilty for saying no.
    I feel obligated to agree to every single thing and I always feel like I’m being taken advantage of because I resent the fact I’ve said yes when I don’t want to do the thing, but guess what? That’s totally on me!
    So I want to feel confident in saying no, or explaining why a thing makes me uncomfortable. I want to come home and not tear myself up for being “a bad person”.
    (Also, though, I want to continue to say yes to SOME things, because that’s when the fun and surprise adventures occur!)

  44. “So tell me, future boy, who’s the president in 2017?”
    “Donald Trump.”
    “THE ACTOR?!?”

  45. i resolve to move through the world softly and complexly. i will spend more time creating& enjoying others creations. i will look for the meaning in everything i can.

    and maree your line stuck with me. i will not be scared of how much i love my girlfriend.

  46. i resolve to move through the world softly and complexly. im going to give myself as much time as i need to work through trauma and not get frustrated or angry with myself over it. and im going to start journaling again because i want to remember these times in my life for as long as i can.

    and maree your line stuck with me. i will not be afraid of how much i love my girlfriend.

    • It’s so good a set of resolutions that I felt I needed to up vote it twice too.

      Happy New Year to you both.

  47. I’m so glad this is the comment thread topic! I’ve been seriously thinking about resolutions for the first time ever and have been wanting to share them.

    – I want to start being honest about the amount of work I put into things instead of pretending I’m carefree and didn’t even try (“oh, that assignment? I did it the morning it was due HAHAHAH!!”; “I found this eyeliner in the seat of my friend’s car. I never buy makeup and I just kinda smudge it on my face and it magically turns into a smoky eye because I’m effortless LOL”; etc etc etc). It makes me feel silly to not admit that I try for some things – what, am I worried people are going to make fun of me for giving a shit? Also, as someone who sometimes hangs out with people that do exactly the same thing, I know firsthand that it makes other people feel shitty about themselves for actually putting in effort, and I don’t wanna make anyone feel shitty about themselves.
    – Somewhat conversely, I want to put consistent effort into my studies, instead of working hard at the beginning and then chilling out because I think I’m smart enough to coast (note: I’m not)

    – I want to date more men and masculine-presenting folk (although I’m still not interested in cis men), because that’s a part of my sexuality that I have only recently been discovering, that strongly resonates with me but also terrifies me a little.
    – I want to date, in general. I’m a very sensitive person and I’m also dealing with weirdo trauma shit (as are we all, ultimately). I don’t want to vacuum-seal myself off into never dating anyone ever just because there is some possibility of getting somewhat hurt and I am not yet the perfect version of myself (I am never going to become that person) – SO, the trick for me is to find that balance between allowing myself to take those risks, while still being kind to myself and bracing myself for the reverberations and the pain that will undoubtedly arise as a result of taking those risks, and taking care of myself in whatever way will help me the most.

    – I want to keep doing the great things I started doing in 2016 that make me feel good in my head and in my body: exercise, eating vegetables, making home-cooked food, maintaining friendships, going the fuck to therapy.

    2016 was a year of a lot of pain for me (at the broader political level but also at the personal level, as I was in an abusive relationship that really, really shattered me). I’m super fckn ready for 2017: I’m moving to a new city, starting my graduate degree, leaving this shit behind and am PSYCHED to build new strength in myself and in the activist communities that surround me! ONWARDS!

  48. I love reading everyone’s resolutions! And I love that this is a place we can put it out into the universe instead of say, writing it in a notebook and then forgetting about these things in six weeks.

    I’ve been thinking a lot about the type of person I am becoming and the type of person I want to be. 2016 was a rough year mentally and emotionally. I felt like my life was finally coming together, excelling at my job, making and maintaining new friendships, leaving toxic relationships behind, getting proper exercise and eating well. Things were going so well and then I fell into the deepest, darkest well of depression. Likely the worst of my adult life. Fortunately, with the help of my doctor and therapist, I’m maintaining and getting better. Which leads me to resolution number one:

    1. Continue to improve my mental health. Take the necessary steps to keep myself healthy, including but not limited to: regular exercise, eating healthy (lay off the carbs), meditation, visits to salt cave.

    2. Write more often.

    3. Spend more money on skin care products because I’m less than three months from being 30 and I’m pretty chill about aging but having a good complexion is important to me.

    4. SAVE $$$. Save enough for a down payment on a house in 2018.

    5. Invest $$$.

    6. Find ways to put myself out there. Date. Make new friends. Maintain friendships when they are made. Stop acting like you are a burden to those around you.

    7. Be more queer :) I’ve only been out to myself and close friends for close to a little over a year. I want to be more out or as I have dubbed it, “Unapologetically Queer 2017”

    8. Have less stuff; buy less stuff. Purge. Purge my closet, purge the apps on my phone, purge my inbox.

    And most importantly, try not to freak the f out when I think about the orange piece of garbage ruining the country.

    Let’s do this.

  49. Riese, our fearless leader, we’re thinking of you and sorry to hear about the breakup and all the best to you in 2017.

  50. In 2017, I’m going to join the Autostraddle staff as a writer of mental health and living in a Trump loving Midwest. I could write a book about my gym owner friend who is hellbent on “saving me” b/c I’m gay and lacking in love of God… ???

  51. Reconfigure my self care and find the space to do that. Which definitely means finding a new place to live.

  52. My new year’s resolution is to stop reading this website until somebody apologises for the fact Heather Hogan, a white woman, has compared lesbians, many of whom happen to be woc, she considers too uppity to white nazi men.

    Either apologise or at least admit this space is not safe fpr lesbians.

    • I have no idea what you’re referring to but I do think that you need to reread whatever it is you’re upset about. Or alternatively, you can just stop visiting this site.

      • “I have no idea what you’re referring to but clearly you’re just ignorant and don’t get it”.

        This reaponse is not in the least bit helpful.

        Go on Heather Hogan’s twitter and you will see her state that lesbians who care about lesbophobia share similarities with nazis. I will be happy to leave this website, as I’m sure many fellow lesbians will also do so, if this type of disdain for lesbians fighting oppression is considered acceptable.

    • This space is not safe for TERFy biphobic jerks who start shouting lesbophobia when anyone dare protest or disagree with their assholery.

      They can GTFO and go rot some other corner of the web.

      Also Heather wasn’t calling TERFs nazis she was noting their tactics are the same tactics used by white nationalists and MRAs.

      She shouldn’t apologize because some people lack reading comprehension skills.

      • It’s not inherently biphobic nor transphobic to fight against lesbophobia, which is the implication.

        Next you’ll be telling me that poc should “stop using the race card”, or that jewish ppl need to stop bringing up the holocaust. You don’t get to be a lesbophobe or dismiss our struggle because bad people in our community exist. That’d be like if I dismissed biphobia or compared bisexuals to hateful men because there are bisexuals who treat lesbians badly.

        Also “she wasn’t calling then nazis, she’s just comparing them to white nationalists and mras” is a total cop out. She still comparing lesbians, many of which are woc, to white racist men. Wow, that’s so much better then just saying Nazi outright *heavy sarcasm”

        I don’t care if Heather apologises or not. Ive never cared for her. I just want to know if the rest of the editors on this website agree with her position. If so, as a jewish lesbian I do not feel safe here.

        • It’s starling how openly hostile you can be towards lesbians if you imply they’re the “bad” kind of lesbian first.

          Lesbophobia is a real issue. It’s not something we should put in quotes.

          • There’s no good/bad lesbians.
            There’s TERFs who claim they are being discriminated against while being discriminatory.

            You should be mad at them for making a mockery of what can be a real issue to try and cover their assholery.
            Claiming lesbophobia is a smoke screen for them, they don’t actually care they just want to divide us up and hurt transwomen.
            That’s what’s bad.

            It’s like saying claiming Black Lives Matter is an anti-cop anti-white hate group b/c asking cops be better trained is hate speech.

          • Lex, if you had spent any time in lesbian circles, you would know that there is a lot of pressure on us to be “the good kind” of the lesbian, a sort of pressure that isn’t put on other members of thr lgbt community. There are just as many bisexual and straight terfs, yet it’s lesbians who are often generalised and have that label applied obto us the most. It’s no accodent accident that when people say “terf” the first thibg that comes to mind is a lesbian. The fact that even talking about lesbophobia can put you in the “bad” category and therefore “like racist evil men” is abhorrent.

            Apparently I can’t even be mad or critical of Heather because if I’m not constantly flagellating myself for some of the shitty things ppl do in my community, then I’m a bad person.

            It’s possible for two things to be bad at the same time.

            At the end of the day Lex, what Heather has said has upset a lot of lesbians pf varying races, many of which are trans. I am not the only one. Being so dismissing and talking down to lesbians abpu lesbian issues, when you are not a lesbian yourself, is really not helping things.

          • (Replying here because I can’t reply on my own comment, sorry)

            AJL (may I call you that?), I appreciate that you have taken the time to clarify my confusion, except now I am more confused than ever. When you say “the lesbian community on Tumblr,” do you mean to include or exclude me?

            As I have stated, I am a lesbian on Tumblr, which, I hate to have to point out, I mentioned before saying I was a “good lesbian.” Please reread my sentence. Those thoughts were in the same sentence, but “lesbian” comes before “TERF.” (*The thing I like about parenthetical statements is that they’re more of side-note than the main idea, but that’s just an opinion of mine. I would never make any broad generalizations about them.)

            I know I sound petty, but c’mon, good lesbians always are. It is a fact; like saying “they are all pissed.” Irrefutable fact, right? (Yes, that is sarcasm you detect.)

            Once again, I am going to point out a flaw in your statement. When you say that members the lesbian community on Tumblr are all equally appalled, you are either including me, and lying, or excluding me, and still lying. I am not appalled by anything Heather posted. So that’s at least one lesbian in the Tumblr community who disagrees with you. Perhaps I am in the minority, it wouldn’t be the first time, but I think you should consider not making such broad claims that can’t be backed up because they don’t lend credence to the rest of what you are saying, which may actually be important. If only I hadn’t lost faith in your words, maybe I would be able to see your side.

            You are right about one thing. I definitely begin every sentence I whack on my keyboard with, “I am the good type of lesbian.” How did you know? Are you one of my two followers on Twitter? I thought you looked familiar. You had me at aggression and condensation, by the way.

          • Mavi, you admit yourself that you rarely to never use tumblr. You are not active with the lesbian community on tumblr that plays a major component in the anti lesbophobia movement. I suppose you have to ask yourself if you fit the criteria or not.

            Let’s say you are included in being part of lesbian tumblr. Okay. You’re one person okay with it. There are still another 500 lesbians who disagree with you. There is a general consensus that what Heather wrote is at the very least highly problematic and ignorant. Look up the definition of majority, then come back to me.

            Let’s be honest, it’s no secret that auto straddle is struggling to stay afloat,you think this place can afford 500+ lesbians (and who knows how many more off tumblr) swearing off the place because they fear it wouldn’t be safe for them? We’re talking a myriad of women here. Not just “evil terfs”. Ever heard of damage control?

            You are being petty. No that doesn’t make you a good lesbian. I get you’re trying to be sarcastic and taking the piss, but if anything you’re proving my point that there exists a pressure on lesbians to be “the good kind of lesbian”. Apparently good lesbians don’t fight against leabophobia, only racist sexist nazi terfs do. Aren’t you clever and special.

            Do you have anything else to add other than “ha, you said lesbian tumblr is pissed off at Heather, but I, the most important lesbian in the world, who also very rarely posts on tumblr, disagree!!! Hahaha check MATE!!”? Because um, you’re making yourself look desperate and clutching at straws.

            Please tell me you have more up your sleeve.

        • I didn’t find any such implication in Heather’s words, I found her quite clear about what she is and is not talking about.

          • I’m glad you didn’t find her comments disturbing and offensive, Rachel, but they sure offended me and many others. I know that lesbian tumblr, a very diverse group of different races, political opinions and on thw gender spectrum, are all equally appalled. This is starting to really blow up on other forums.

        • Noting similarity of tactics is not making a comparison.

          But I have a feeling anything I type in response isn’t being comprehensively read and thoughtfully absorbed by you because you’ve decided Heather is an evil you can cry down the heavens about and feel secure in your own goodness about.
          Enjoy your sanctimony?

          • Aggression and condensation won’t get you anywhere, Lex

            This is really upset a lot of lesbians. Maybe listen to what we’re trying to say instead of shrugging your shoulders and being hostile towards a jewish lesbian speaking up about something that makes her uncomfortable.

            I am not exaggerating when I say there are young lesbians, lesbians who rely on this website to make them feel less alone in such a lesbophobic world, who have wrote that Heather’s comments have made them want to kill themselves. Maybe show a little empathy instead of reiterating hpw bad terfs are, as if we didn’t already know.

          • Um, maybe I’m old, but…what is “lesbian tumblr?” As a lesbian (not the TERF kind, though, fuck that) who is also (rarely-to-never) on tumblr, I have to know. We’re/They’re all “equally appalled?” Seriously? All of us? Equally? Nobody asked me. Maybe I’m the only who isn’t appalled. Not in the least.

            Am I “lesbophobic?” Somehow I feel like I’d rather be that than transmysoginist.

            P.S. I’m also a woc…seriously, why didn’t “lesbian tumblr” bother polling me?

          • Mavi, lesbian tumblr is exactly what it sounds like. The lesbian community on tumblr. A community comprised of different races and ethnicities, trans amd cis alike, and they’re all pissed.

            Can I just say that it’s so sad you had to let everyone know that you’re not a terf before stating you are also a lesbian. Like damn, you don’t need to mention you’re the good type of lesbian everytime you whack out the keyboard to voice your opinion.

            So far I’ve seen posts reblogged by hundreds of lesbians about the issue. I’ve seen popular trans lesbian bloggers talking about this. I’ve seen young lesbians wrote that Heather’s comments make them want to kill themselves. I’m sure you can appreciate that my concerns are with the hundreds of upset, angry and hurt lesbians than with one person who is cool with Heather saying that lesbians have privilege in queer circles and therefore lesbophobia shouldn’t ever be talked about because if you do you must be a false flagging terf that acts like a nazi.

            Fighting bigotry against lesbians doesn’t make you a transmisogynist. If you cared about trans lesbians at all you would would listen to the countless many who are voicing their concerns about this incident and you would support somebody who believes that their fight against lesbophobia males thrm conparable to sexist and racist whote men.

    • I think you’ll find, AJL, that coming in here to criticize Heather Hogan is a bit like coming into the Gryffindoor common doom and criticizing Hermione Granger. Soon you’re gonna have half of Dumbledor’s Army on you about this. And it’s not because we blindly think she’s unimpeachable. It’s because, like Hermione, she is here every single day doing the work, she is pouring her whole heart and her big brain into this culture of love and critical thinking and acceptance, and you can tear people down all you want, but meanwhile, she is trying to build something up. She is building a fortress of goodness, AJL, and she is unstoppable. So yeah, we love her.

      There’s a lot going on out there right now. A lot of it is centered around AE’s new editor and what a lot of us perceive to be a climate over there that is hostile to trans woman and to the queer community at large. Luckily, over here at Autostraddle, at least since I started reading, the editorial staff have always worked hard to keep this space safe and welcoming for *all* LBTQ+ women and nonbinary folks. It’s delicate and complicated work for sure, but they’re trying to do it.

      I hate these culture wars online because they feel so false, so artificially constructed to me. Maybe I’m just not friends with them (and maybe I am very lucky) but I haven’t met that many lesbians out in the real world who think trans women aren’t women, or that they need safe spaces away from bi women, or any of that stuff. We are all part of the same struggle. Working together will ALWAYS be the better option than these weird false divisions between us.

      I won’t respond here, because from your answers it’s pretty clear you’re not listening, but know: we are here for Heather, we are here for each other, and you could be a part of that too, if you wanted.

      • Haha, I went into calling Heather out expecting her Mason family esque fangroup to go into full blown attack mode. It’s not exactly intimidating. At the end of the day, your messiah is still in the wrong, and being snarky isn’t really going to sway my opinion.

        Word of advice, Harry Potter references is pretty passé.

        Heather is not building something good if she has to tear down other lesbians to acheieve her dreams.

        Yes trans misogyny is bad. So is lesbophobia. These are not mutually exclusive concepts. Why are lesbians expected to bear the brunt of intra community doadain and discrimination otherwise we’re being counterproductive? Why is it considered terfy and nazi like to defend ourselves from hatred aimed at us?

        Sorry, but lesbians deserve better than what’s being offered.

    • :) Why am I looking up the definition of majority if I stated I was in the minority? I know my place, kid, relax.

      AJL, I seriously doubt that I proved your point when you had trouble making one in the first place. But, go ahead, stay in the 500-people-strong lesbian echo-chamber that is tumblr, apparently. Maybe they will agree with your “autostraddle doing damage control” assessment of things while I sit here desperately clutching at the straws of my fading online image. Who will think me special and clever now? Oh my, what will I do if I can’t make lesbians succumb to the pressures of being “the right kind” of lesbian? Oh, how the mighty have fallen. I mean me; I used to wield such power.

      Clearly, I have nothing up my sleeve, AJL. I remain as clueless about what you were trying to say as ever. I sure hope you get that apology, though; this was fun. May 2017 bring more enlightenment than 2016.

      • “Kid?” I’m in my fourties, but thanks for the compliment.

        It’s hysterical that you refer to tumblr as an echo chamber when you’re on Autostraddle for crying out loud. The place where most articles barely get over 10 comments, mostly fom the same handful of people. A place that is barely above water which even Riese admits on several occasions needs more people donating to keeping the place running more than ever. The sort of place where dissent is often met with a hasty delete and block.

        But sure, tumblr is the echo chamber.

        The rest of your your post is just rambly nonsense. Come up with a new argument or just, like, move on with your life.

  53. It’s now midnight in Sydney. The countdown is on and the Harbour Bridge has just ignited with the fireworks display.


    Best Wishes for a saner year.

    • Same! *hugs* Sun’s just setting so beautifully here, and if you’re already cracking out the fireworks, I better take the meat out of the freezer.
      Happy New Year!

      • Thanks, hope you had a great night. Best Wishes to you for ’17.

        We all need lots of love this year, so queue me up for any and all the hugs that are on offer. I’ll also boomerang them back to you and any others who want to join in.

  54. I’m realizing that this last year or so has been about losing a lot of shame, and I’m going to try to do things with that this year.

    Carmen, I don’t have the words but thank you for all of the writing this year, especially in the last month and especially in this intro. It’s been sticking in me and collecting and not making a snowball of change, but something that is completely different and matters a lot, and I’m coming back to them as I chart the way ahead.

    And Heather, thank you for this reminder and the recurring themes in your work about gentleness and love and how fierce and strong that is. You’ve helped me do a lot of growing in the sunshine.

    Thank you, Autostraddle.

  55. Love reading these.

    My personal 2016 was actually pretty great (adopted two cats, got a job I love doing violence prevention work, clawed my way out of depression), and I feel a little bad for saying that because I know this year was so catastrophic for so many.

    choose happiness
    –remember who I was before I was depressed + tap into that (I miss that person!)
    –general: be silly/vain/flirtatious AND hyper competent in all that I do. be my best femme self.
    –specific: find or host a party I can just wear lingerie to
    fight harder
    –spend more time talking to/organizing moderate/liberal white people + shifting their politics left
    –donate amounts of money that make me feel nervous
    –put my body in harm’s way/physically resist Trump’s administration whenever I can

    • Also tbh my resolution for the queer community is that we spend less time fighting over who can use what words and other intra-community battles among people who agree on 99% of the things and more time organizing across difference and making sure trump/pence/the white supremacist patriarchal state doesn’t kill/deport/imprison/traumatize our must vulnerable community members.

      (also this is in general my resolution for the left too)

      (I’m kind of kidding but actually not)

  56. I’m going to do more witchcraft and start podcasting and throw out like a third of my stuff because it’s too much. I’m going to go to the gym and reduce stress and give up alcohol. And I’m going to come out as nonbinary as much as I can, and stop letting people treat my queer feelings like over-reactions.

  57. first post here, thinking a new years resolution write-up is appropriate :)

    – practice yoga more
    – meditate/practice active mindfulness on a more consistent basis
    – go on an international trip to somewhere i haven’t been to before
    – pick up a new sport/gym activity (kickboxing comes to mind)
    – actually keep up with the book club i’ve created!
    – oh, and finding a girlfriend would be cool, too ;)

  58. I agree with many others that while 2016 was a general garbage fire for us all, in my own personal life there were some really great things. I have a great job with much less stress and awesome co-workers that I WALK TO FROM MY APT which is totally and utterly life-changing. I spent a lot of time with the friends I have waited my whole life to meet. I started seeing a therapist who is kind and funny and insightful and GAY and who is helping me put the pieces of my soul together. I accepted that I suffer from PTSD and am learning what that means for my continued existence on this planet. I told some people that I want to write books even though I was desperately afraid they would laugh and/or roll their eyes at me and instead they said YES PLEASE DO THE THING HOW CAN WE HELP YOU and it opened a little door in my heart.

    My 2016 Resolution was to stop saying “sorry” all the time. I became very conscious of how much I/women apologize for our existence/opinions/etc and I did a really great job of largely eliminating extraneous apologies from my vocabulary.

    So… 2017

    1. By the end of the year I will have a submittable manuscript of my WIP “In Search of Grace,” a YA novel about a teen mormon girl who realizes she’s a lesbian and has to put her life back together after her parents flip their shit. I’m going to block out time to write and turn all the things off and write. I’m going to write. I’m going to write. I’m going to write.

    2. I’m going to open my heart. I’m going to be less afraid of how much I love my friends and start trusting that they love me back. I’m going to open myself up to the possibility that romantic love is not a lie. I’m going to declare that wanting someone to snuggle up with at night is not a declaration of weakness, and it does not mean that I’m an incomplete human, it just means that I’m awesome and I want to share my life with someone who is also awesome.

    3. I’m going to let go of the things that do not serve the person I want to be. That means probably ceasing communication with the vast majority of my family and fully accepting that. That means getting rid of clothes that don’t fit and gifts I don’t use and stuff I don’t need.

    4. I’m going to be like Neville Longbottom and FUCK ALL THE SHIT UP. I’m going to protest and donate and fight and call out other white people on their shit and do everything I can to support those more vulnerable than I am.

    So basically, I’m going to be more like General Organa. And also write a book.

  59. hi friends!
    okay I love resolutions and I plan to write in my journal all evening about 2017 – yoga, biiiig bike ride with my dad, reconnect with a travelling love, etc. etc. – but right now I’m currently pumped about all these budgeting goals!

    I may be a rare breed but I just love budgeting. I find it soothing and empowering to know where I’m spending money. It also helps me be more accountable to myself because I see where I shop. This reminds me to try and “vote with my dollars” and put my money where my mouth is, when I can. I ask for receipts for everything (even the single stamp from the post office) and then punch everything into a really simple spreadsheet. I have a list of categories (tuition, rent, cell phone, books, eating out, etc.) and the expected amount I’ll spend in that category. So when I punch in a number it’ll automatically subtract that amount from the total.

    All to say if anyone is looking for a spreadsheet that I’ve crafted over the past few years and is basic but super functional, let me know! Maybe comment on here and we can figure a way for me to get it to you. Financial stability is empowering and I wish I could be everyone’s budgeter! This is the best thing I can think of in the meantime while I try to figure that one out.

    love and endless gratitude for this sacred website <3

    • OHMYGOSH yes all of this resonates with me so much in that it’s something I want to do so badly but never do! I also recently just read an article where the title was something like “Self-Control is Just Compassion With Your Future Self” and that’s how I think of budgeting, too, except I don’t do it and I’m absolutely terrible at it! I’m finally making enough were I feel like I should be financially stable but I’m totally not, and I struggle to hold myself accountable for how I spend my money. So I would LOVE for you to send me your spreadsheet and also give me any other tips and tricks you might have!

      • oh yay! kk I’ll add you as a friend and we can go from there – financial responsibility for everyone!

    • I would looooove a spreadsheet. Keeping better track of my money has always been something I’ve been “meaning to do” (i.e. hasn’t happened)!

      Especially now with everything going on, and I see all these great causes, and I’m like “TAKE MY MONIES!” Should probably track those… ;)

      • absolutely! I’ll add ya as a friend and we can figure a way for me to send it to you in the best format.

  60. I…don’t really do new years resolutions? I mean, I know the success rate on them, so I try not to set myself up for failure? I’m not saying new years resolutions are cursed, but… it seems like they fail more often than resolutions made at other times of the year.

    which doesn’t mean i don’t do stuff for new years but they tend to fall into one of four categories.

    1) goals that are emotionally difficult but logistically simple.

    last year my new years resolution was to come out to my best friend. Sure enough, i came out to my best friend by January 7th. This year my new years resolution is get and try on a binder. I put it off for the longest time because most binder companies don’t seem to realize people with breasts larger than DD exist and binders are super expensive…wait, the gc2b half-binder is 33 dollars? BOUGHT WITH EXPEDITED SHIPPING. I might try on every size and be disappointed but I will at least know if binding is an option for me. and more importantly, i will have fulfilled by new years resolution and won’t have to worry/feel guilty about it the other 51 weeks of the year.

    2.) witchcraft

    Ok not really, but ‘new years superstitions that might as well be witchcraft.’ I’m spending new years day like I always do, 1) recovering from new years eve 2.) deep cleaning my apartment in the dark because hangover. I have two bags full of cabbage, black eyed peas, and cornbread for the two nye parties I’m going to and a bunch or stuff from last year I am going to ritualistically burn at said nye parties. I will also be doing new year readings because i got the slow holler tarot earlier this month and I need to show it off.

    3.) habits I would like to continue into the new year.

    I’ve started going with a friend to the gym once a week and we’ve been going that for 3 months. I’ve always had a hard time overcoming my perfectionism to do art but on bad days I’ve started using coloring books and coloring in old drawing with markers/watercolor and that’s been working out well for me. I’ve found resources to learn yoga sequences instead of following yoga classes/videos which has really helped me focus on my form/not get frustrated/maintain a sense of meditative flow that is what drew me to yoga in the first place. it’s also cheaper than headspace, which i really have not found helpful.

    4.) That thing with pocket I always do

    for three years my resolution has been to finally read all my articles in pocket. For three years I have managed to make it into pocket’s top 1% of readers. For three years I have failed to clear out my pocket queue. I’m surprisingly ok with this.

  61. I just spent an evening at a party and there were these queer kids calmly, logically, non judgementally,talking about binary sexist thinking and how it’s a systemic thing that is drilled into us.

    It was lovely and made my cold dead heart feel something like hope for the future.

    • I understand what you mean about hope for the future. One of the reasons that I come to this site each day is because I’m buoyed up and inspired each time I read the contributions from both staff and all who post here.

      This old lesbian was a bit too inclined to cynicism about how lousy the world has become and now I’m exposed daily to hope. Life, and hope for the relief of all of the worlds woes is still a possibility.

  62. More art! More kitchen witchery! Less screen time. More intentional community/relationship building. More running. Less time indoors. More activism. More openness.

  63. Usually I have a whole list of goals I want to accomplish in the next year, and I usually get most of them accomplished.

    2016 saw like 1/4 of my goals accomplished, and I honestly can’t think of goals that I want to put down for 2017. Yeah, there’s things I want to do, but I don’t want to commit to writing them down in case my health doesn’t get better because the only thing that’s shittier than getting to watch all your friends do cool shit that you can’t is to look at the list of cool shit you wanted to do and up until earlier that year would have been able to do no problem, but then shit happened and now you can’t do that stuff (or can’t do it reliably).

    I just…want to not be in pain all the time in 2017. That’s it. That’s all I want. On top of that, it’d be cool if I could switch up meds to both not be in pain all the time and also have a brain that is capable of remembering things, like things I need to do that day or that week or whenever. If I could find a balance where most days I can do most stuff, that would be ideal, but that seems like asking too much with the way 2016 went.

    In the mean time I’ll do my PT and take my meds and try to advocate for myself in my doctors appointments because that’s all I can do, really.

  64. I also resolve not to engage in internet flame wars- I’ll read the evidence, make my own decisions and not follow the inevitable evolution of ad hominem attacks and vitriol because that’s not productive for education and it’s sure as hell not good for my mental health. I’ve made this resolution before and I’m not great at following it but one thing I know about myself is I have to try.

    • I followed a “do not engage or stick around for the shit sequel counter statement” rule in regards to flame wars for about 6 years, this weekend I broke ittt.

      I got no regrets but that of my time being wasted.
      It’s like Pringles, once you pop it’s hard to stop.

      Hard resolution to follow dude, I wish you the will power to back out, leave the flames to burn themselves out and not fan them.

  65. I don’t know. Resolutions have been a thing I’ve not, y’know, bought into for a while. But I thought I’d be starting this considerably different. I mean I thought the world would be starting this year considerably different. And I felt good at first. I wrote new year’s eve and new year’s, talked to some safe people. And then today I got dumped, after five years. And I am less optimistic.

    So I guess my resolutions are to try and stay optimistic in light of what have you and be more creative other than towards the beginning and end of the year. I don’t count this as a resolution, cause it’s been in the works for a bit and resolutions are easy to fail at, but I’m going back to school, too.

  66. My resolution is to sleep more. That will probably make me better at most other things, right?

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