Simply Me

you-comfort-me:

edgebug:

so in LOTR’s appendices it says that legolas eventually builds a boat and takes gimli across the seas and into the west, the gray havens. you know, the place arwen isn’t allowed to go because she’s in love with a human dude bUT LEGOLAS (AKA ‘YOU LITTLE SHIT’) JUST SAYS “FUCK IT” AND SNEAKS GIMLI INTO THE GODDAMN UNDYING LANDS LIKE CONTRABAND TWIZZLERS INTO A MOVIE THEATER

best literary analysis ever

Sexual Abuse, Consent, and Losing Friends

hermionejg:

CharlieMcDonnell.com

For those that haven’t heard yet, we’ve had some pretty unsettling news appear out of a section of our community recently. Many people, including some friends of mine, have come forward to say that they were emotionally manipulated and in some cases sexually abused by certain members of the YouTube community. Some of these posts were proved to be false accounts, while others appear to be more valid. The full story of this issue constitutes a relatively complex web of posts on tumblr which is growing day by day, and I’ll leave it up to you to figure out how to delve into that rabbit hole should you decide to.

Normally I wouldn’t want to get involved in a conversation like this, but given that some of the accused parties are people that I know personally and have worked with in the past, I don’t feel like I can stay silent this time. However, I’m also worried about getting too specific, as the frustrating reality is that I just can’t know for sure what’s actually happened. As much as I wish I could know the truth, I have just the same information as everyone else and so all I can do is make assumptions based on that.

Alex Day, one of the accused, has been a friend and housemate of mine for the last seven years, and during the period that I lived with Alex I did become aware of instances in which he’d cheated on his girlfriends. While this did make me very uncomfortable, the major regret I have about our relationship as friends is that I feel I was too lenient with him about what he was doing. We talked a few times about his cheating, and I let him know that it was something I disapproved of, but ultimately I left any further decisions up to him. I’m ashamed of this, in hindsight. I had urges to talk to his girlfriends about what was going on, but I never found the courage to do it personally. I didn’t want to spoil mine and Alex’s friendship, or our living situation, and so I let it slide. I never want to be that person again.

But please let me be clear: In the time that I knew Alex, I never had any notion that the girls he was with were anything other than happily consenting to being with him. The idea that anything contrary to that was going on behind closed doors makes me incredibly unhappy, and with that, I just don’t feel able to call Alex a friend of mine anymore. Simply put, I don’t know if I can trust him. I feel this same way about other past-friends of mine who have been accused.

Even though I have not been wronged personally by any of this, I feel so sad and angry and confused and drained by the whole situation. I know that many of the people I’m close to as well as many of you reading this undoubtably feel the same. I do urge you to spend time with close friends and family now if you can – I know that’s been helping me a lot. Also, if it’s ok, I don’t really want to talk about these issues outside of this post, at least for the time being. I desperately want to think about something else right now.

To those who came forward with the accusations about sexual abuse and manipulation recently, I have a massive amount of respect for you. I can’t imagine the bravery that it must have taken, and I’m glad that some of you found the strength to speak out because of others doing the same. I still do not feel a real sense of closure from all of this, and I’m sure that feeling must be vastly worse for you right now. I really do hope the resolution that you deserve comes soon.

On a related but entirely coincidental note, I have recently been working with the Home Office on their In The Know campaign, which is making an effort to inform young people about relationships, consent, sexual abuse and rape. More info here. I’ve been working on this project since January, and I’ll be uploading a video to my channel about Sex & Consent within the week as part of it. Also, if you need any help or information with issues related to sexual abuse, visit This Is Abuse if you’re in the UK, RAINN if you’re in the US, and they also have a list of international resources here.

Yes, this is another post about being manipulated by a YouTuber

regularusername0409:

Hi. This is Sarah Snitch. I’m posting this on a new Tumblr for personal reasons, but there’s no reason for me to be anonymous. I planned to post this yesterday, but, knowing Alex Carpenter really well, I expected him to release a comment that would, in some way, try to discredit what Rosianna has said. I was waiting for a post like that so I could address the things he’d say and back Rosi up. I no longer feel like waiting around for that. I have Rosi’s back and she has given me the courage to share my story too.

When I was 16 I was a big fan of Alex’s. Our earliest interactions included messages on Myspace, IM’s, and eventually texting. He would invite me to parties that I would clearly never be permitted (by my parents) to attend, but, being completely infatuated with the attention I was receiving from this older man (he was 24), I continued to talk to him on a regular basis. Early on he would say things to me like, “why do you have to be 16?” and “you’re so cute, I wish you were older”, but those clear red flags in his mind were not enough to stop him from pursuing me, and, me being 16, did not have the capacity to understand how dangerous the situation really was. Let’s get something straight here: when you’re 16 and insecure and also very used to being teased by boys for being so nerdy, you’re obviously going to revel in attention from a “nice”, charming, guy who has the same interests as you. It’s the responsibility of the person who knows better (which, by the way, is always the 24 year old and NOT the 16 year old) to know where lines are drawn and not cross them. In this way, I was taken advantage of.

We lived in the same city, and, after awhile, we would see each other frequently for milkshakes or coffees. We would sometimes kiss, but things didn’t get sexually intense until I was about 17 and he was 25. We did not have sex until I was 18, but the things that went on between us were definitely still illegal and I am not sure he knows that. I need to say that I do not feel like I was sexually coerced, but I was also 17 years old and it is difficult for me to think back and be absolutely sure of what I wanted. I absolutely felt the need to be sexually adventurous in order to keep this man’s attention, which isn’t the best reason to lose your virginity, in my opinion.

I was always very serious about him, but being 16/17, I was unable to be in any sort of committed relationship with him until I was legal, but I was always holding out for that idea. I wanted it so badly that I didn’t date or hook up with anyone else from ages 16-20. While I believed that he would also want to be exclusive with me when I was legal, he actually held out for much longer than that under the pretense that it would not be good for his image to be in a relationship. In reality, he wanted to be free to have sex with more people than just me.

At first he would tell me it was happening. He would confess that he’d slept with someone in the same way someone confesses to cheating on his or her partner, but it wasn’t cheating. I wasn’t his girlfriend. Eventually, it happened enough times that I was looking for the evidence. I would see enough tweets between him and another girl that I was positive they were seeing each other. Later, I would accidentally see (and eventually look for) texts that popped up on his phone while we were together. They were always from the same 5 or so girls and always sexual in nature. I was in limbo for years, not feeling able to demand him to be exclusive to me (at first because I was 16, and later because I was too afraid to lose him), and not being allowed to be mad when he strayed from me.

On one occasion, before a convention in San Francisco, I begged him to only hook up with me while we were there because he had no reason to go to anyone else because I would be there, too (how sick is that?). What’s ridiculous is that he didn’t even refute the fact that he was interested in other girls, but he did agree to only be with me that weekend. Unfortunately, it became obvious one night in SF that he had messed around with Rosi and he tried to excuse his behavior by saying that “someone told him I had hooked up with another guy” so he thought he was now allowed to.

In this instance, as with many others, I am unable to recognize the type of person that I was back then. I would never stand for this type of behavior today, which only furthers proves how easily manipulated I was a teenager. Alex is charming. He is able to quickly make you believe you are the most important person in his world. Funny how today I am able to discuss his favorite choice phrases with other girls he was with – phrases he said to make us all believe we were special to him.

Eventually, I gave him an ultimatum. I was in college then, probably 18 and he was 26. I told him that I couldn’t put up with him being with other girls. I told him that if he loved me (as he claimed) then he shouldn’t want anybody else and that his inability to commit meant he didn’t really love me. He responded by telling me, “If you walk away from this, you know you will never find someone as good for you as I am.” We ended our conversation saying that we’d take a week to think about it and decide after that. A week later I was his girlfriend.

We were very public. Our relationships status was on Facebook, we appeared in each other’s videos, and he’d tweet at me telling me he loved me. These were all things that, in some way, made me feel very secure. That’s all I’d ever really wanted, honestly. Looking back, I wanted to be with him from the start, but really fought for a commitment and a “title” because I thought he would be faithful to me if I got that from him. That was not the case. He continued to text girls and flirt with them via Direct Message on Twitter. On one occasion, while I was on tour with him, we had a mutual female friend with us, and he texted her; “I just saw you on your bed and wanted to take you right then and there. I want you so badly”, all while he was lying in bed with me. At this point, I was looking at his phone whenever he was texting. I was doing things that I never would have done if not given explicit reasons to distrust my partner. To this day, I feel nervous and insecure in relationships because of how long I was faced this type of behavior and need tons of reassuring to be able to trust my boyfriend. It was such a big issue for me that I brought it up with him constantly. On every occasion he would ask, angrily, “You don’t trust me?! Maybe we shouldn’t be together if you don’t trust me”. Every time I would back peddle, tell him I trusted him more than anyone, and let the conversation die because I didn’t want to lose him.

I was “with” this guy for almost 5 years. There was a consistent pattern of disrespect, belittlement, and unfaithfulness- along with hundreds of fucked up moments. Like the time he nearly bit my lip off because I wasn’t being “active enough in bed” and he wanted to “shock me into feeling some passion” (really I was just inexperienced and needed to develop a solid comfort level in order to be sexual in any way). Or the time he asked to go on a break with me, really just so he could have sex with a girl he’d be seeing in London the next week (the break ended when he returned). Or the numerous times he would be mad at me for not wanting to have sex (because it’s a real turn on to know your boyfriend was just texting a girl how much he wanted to fuck HER). After we broke up, I started tweeting very vaguely about harmful relationships. Alex would text me and say “Don’t tweet things like that. It makes it seem like our relationship was something it wasn’t”, (actually Alex, it makes our relationship seem like what it was: damaging). It was all a mess and there’s too much to include in just one post. What I want you to take away from this is the following:

  •  If you are a minor and are being pursued by someone over 18, please know that their behavior is wrong. You are not at fault for liking the attention. Especially if you are a fan of that person – of course you’ll be in heaven thinking you are special to them. Please know that they are taking advantage of you.
  • Don’t put up with someone who is going to take you for granted. You deserve commitment, you deserve respect, and you deserve someone who actually loves you.
  • The personality vs. fan dynamic comes with a very unequal balance of power in a relationship. As does any relationship involving someone who’s a minor and someone who’s not. 

There are a lot of girls speaking out about what they’ve gone through right now and too many people are disregarding what they’re saying in order to protect the person who victimized them. So many people are surprised to hear these things about Alex because he “stands for” great things and is “so nice”, but there is a huge difference between what someone says and what someone does. Nice people don’t cheat on their girlfriends. Nice people don’t manipulate underage girls. Nice people don’t purposefully avoid their fans saying, “Don’t make eye contact with her, if she knows I saw her I’ll have to stop and take a picture”.

If this type of situation has happened to you, please remember that there are also so many of us here to support you and back you up. I was very afraid to post anything about what happened to me, but talking about it is the only way that anything will change. I can’t let him sit around thinking that his behavior was ok. I can’t let him just get away with it.

hermionejg:

I am going to start with a redundant sentence: this is uncomfortable and horrible but I  don’t want to have to be writing this. I am scared because i have no doubt that there are people who are going to tell me I’m doing this for attention, and in all honesty, I am most scared of him because I feel like I am complicit in all of it. Talking over this week with my friends, especially those who have been involved in bad relationships with guys, the guilt is the most prevalent. Maybe I asked for it. Maybe I encouraged it. At some times I liked it.

Here’s what I’m here to tell you: none of that makes their behaviour okay. None of it. I have to remind myself of that every day. Why? Because I wanted it originally. At least I thought I did. Let’s roll back.

I’m sixteen years old. I declare I’m in love with everyone (Daniel Radcliffe, David Tennant, John Simm, Leo Di Caprio, Daniel Radcliffe in the bath, etc etc etc) and I’m very impressionable and very insecure and feel like total shit about the way I look. I go to a convention and I meet Alex Carpenter and we take pictures and he asks me who I’m staying with and expresses disappointment when I say I’m staying with my mother. But whatever we’re over it and it’s done.

And then a few months later I add him on Facebook and I’m drunk and ridiculous and flirty and whatever. My first step. My fault? Maybe. Whatever. At this point here in 2014 I don’t fucking care. Let’s establish the facts, I was 16 and he was 25. I said this to a friend the other day and I said, when you’re 16 you don’t  know 16 is young. When you’re in your twenties you know 16 is young. I’m in my twenties now. I know 16 is young.

Anyway so he adds me back and we start videoing back and forth. Innocent, yes, but totally fucking 100% flirtatious. So flirtatious. We don’t have a relationship outside of flirtatious. Messages from 25 year old him that say to 16 year old me “come on then. cmere and play with me.”. Messages from 25 year old him to 16 year old me that say “noon. im awake. i just cant seem to find you on any internet chatty services so i can internet chat you up.” Messages titled “message for a pretty girl” and “heres why your special.” Me? I was besotted. I thought this cute guy in California was super fucking interested in me. Imagine my surprise when I get to California a year later and he has arms around other girls, kissing them, treating them as his girlfriend. Whatever I don’t care, right?

So we get to another convention. I have texts this whole time. I’m in people’s rooms, sitting across from him and he’s texting me. He’s sitting next to his almost-girlfriend Sarah and he’s texting me. I’m 17 and he’s giving me things to drink and wild old me accepts them, throws them down in one. At that time, let me state, I was a mess. I was so sick, in a lot of ways, and I spent half the convention crying. I watch him shout at his most regular girl, shout at her for spraining her ankle and not wanting to host a party. My friends and I find a quiet place away from him. We don’t want to deal with him. But somehow I end up in a stairwell, kissing him, and somehow I wake up the next day next to him, only to get up for the bathroom, get back and find him kissing the girl who was in bed next to me.

I blamed him but I also blamed the girl. I blamed everything and felt guilty and hurt when and felt like I was being a bitch and like I was going after this guy. Later on in the holiday, we’d keep texting, but I found out that he was staying in a hotel with this girl who had been in the bed with us, and when me and my friends swung around to pick someone up from the hotel, he texted me that he’d expected to hang out with me. I knew what that meant. The next day he was distant when he texted, and when I said I was walking around the area he was vague. I walked into the restaurant he was at with my friends and saw that he was With the regular girl.

There was one point where I didn’t have anywhere to stay so I stayed with some friends I’d just made. Let’s reiterate how much of a mess I was. These people were so kind and generous to me and I spent a lot of my time crying in the bathroom. This guy and his ‘girlfriend-but-not-his-girlfriend’ would come over and be a couple and I wouldn’t really interact that much. Then at one point he asked to go to coffee. I did and he said “I love that I got to kiss you. She isn’t my girlfriend. I’m so glad I got to kiss you.” At the end of that trip he drove  me to the airport and we kissed and I thought it was the most romantic thing ever. I was convinced I was the most special snowflake. The alpha girl.

I got home and the messages continued. From time to time I’d visualise coming back to the bed and seeing him kiss this girl, or with his hands around someone else. But I pushed it out of my mind because it was fun having someone to flirt with. I found out that he was coming to the UK. He stayed with the other girl in the bed, but spent so much of the trip running his hands up and down me, and on the final day of his trip, it was once again us three in a bed, him kissing me and making me feel special and chosen, when in retrospect he’d been playing me.

I shut him out after that. Totally cut him off, was hurt and cried and wrote letters to Sarah asking her to forgive the fucking stupid decisions I’d made. I’ve since found that he was really bothered by it all. That he can’t deal with not being liked, but it seems to me like he doesn’t see it as part of the problem. He sent messages. I miss you. You’re so important to me. I understand I did some bad things but I want to be your friend. You’re so special. You’re the most special.

At this point it’s so hard to express how manipulative he is. How he charms you, properly charms you, and makes you feel stupid for thinking he likes anyone else, how he has a girl in every state, how he’s texting other girls while he has his hand around or in you.

He tries to convince you that your uncertainty is down to your unacknowledged affections. He tries to convince you that when you bring someone else up, when you bring other instances up of his infidelity, you are crazy! Delusional! Wrong! I never slept with her! It doesn’t matter that you heard her say he slept with me, or that you saw pictures of them, or that you saw tweets back and forth, you’re mistaken. That’s misinformation. If you get further than that it’s well you and I aren’t dating anyway so. I don’t want to talk about this, I want to talk about you and me.

It’s manipulative and disgusting and I hate myself whenever I’m brought back under his charm. I have made so many shitty decisions in relation to that in the last year. I have let him sleep in my bed. All the while knowing that I’m not the only one, whatever the fuck he claims, all the while knowing that he is exploiting my insecurity, exploiting the power dynamic as he has done since I was 16, all the while knowing that he is a cheating liar, who explicitly messages girls in high school even though his in his thirties now, who thinks he can get away with it.

Maybe you still can. But the bravery of others has made me want to say this. And maybe you’ll fuck me over and say that I was complicit or part of it or that you didn’t know it wasn’t consent. But to that I say go fuck yourself. Yes I consented. You manipulated. You lied. And you’re a dirty fucking piece of shit.

The Truth About ALL CAPS (yes another post about dating YouTubers)

italktosnakes:

I had planned (and even said a few days ago) that I wasn’t going to speak up about my experiences dating within the YouTube community. But as more and more brave women have come forward, I’ve finally convinced myself otherwise. My silence isn’t helping anybody - not even myself. I’ve been crying and I’ve felt nauseous and I’ve felt guilt and remorse and now fuck it, I’m just going to tell my story.

I have experienced this not once, but twice. It’s not a secret that I dated both Alex Day and Luke Conard. 

My relationship with Alex was actually what I would consider a pretty decent relationship - at least at the start. I guess I was one of the “lucky” ones, if such a thing exists. We dated publicly, he called himself my boyfriend, we visited each other and made videos together and I even still to this day believe he genuinely cared for me for most of it. In hindsight the relationship was a little strange (we started talking over email and within a week he forwarded me a flight confirmation he’d purchased from London to Seattle without telling me he was doing it. The only the text on the email was “See you on Wednesday :)”. I was twenty years old at the time, not a minor by any means, but I was not very emotionally experienced when it came to dating - so to me, this was a wildly romantic and spontaneous gesture. Please, though, if anyone reading this finds themselves considering meeting an online friend with the intentions of potentially hooking up, please have a serious conversation about it together. Don’t ever “surprise” the other by showing up on their doorstep. This is a big step you need to agree to take together. I had no time to think over or mentally prepare for any of it - suddenly I was in a whirlwind relationship with a boy from another country, only to be dumped six months later when I’ve planned my entire summer study abroad around him. It led to one of the saddest, loneliest, most miserable summers I’ve ever had.

I have no idea if any of the allegations about Alex happened during our relationship. I do know he cheated on me and was actively pursuing multiple women before we even broke up. At the time, I thought that was the worst thing that could possibly happen. I was heartbroken, but cheating happens. It’s inexcusable, but it does. It took me a long time, but eventually I managed to forgive Alex for what he did to me. We even became friends again, which I honestly consider one of my greatest achievements. Forgiving someone who hurts you as badly as Alex hurt me is a momentous accomplishment and I really thought he’d “changed”, which in my mind just had to go as deep as “was starting to value loyalty in his future relationships”. 

I can’t tell you the deception I felt when these stories started coming forward about Alex. I personally know a few of the girls who spoke out, and everything they said sounded very much like something Alex would say. Again, I know I was one of the “lucky” ones, but I felt the weight of these confessions tenfold. Five years of trust rebuilding! Completely for nothing? I couldn’t believe it and I felt like a total fool - like he had managed to dupe me again, even after all these years. It’s been a tough weekend, but not really for the reasons you might think.

I’m not writing this post to gain attention for having been one of Alex’s “victims”, because I wasn’t. Our relationship ended badly, but he never forced me to do anything I didn’t want to do. I’m writing this post to add another name to the list, because the stories I’m reading about Tom Milsom, Alex Day, Alex Carpenter and remembering what went on with Mike Lombardo have shown me I can’t keep quiet anymore. Especially since every single one of these people are people I at one point performed with, spent time with and called my friend.

I was in an abusive and manipulative relationship with Luke Conard.

When we started dating, Luke wasn’t a YouTuber. I was actually glad for that - after the “public scandal” of my relationship with Alex, it almost felt nice trying to go “off the grid” a bit. I actually tried dating “normal” boys at home first, but just two months after Alex and I broke up (and just a few months into ALL CAPS as well) Luke set his sights on me and didn’t let up. He was older, he was charming, and we were in a band together - it felt like the pieces just fell into place. I was a little uncomfortable dating someone 7 years older than me, but what young girl doesn’t like feeling singled out and special? I was totally caught up in the glamour and excitement of ALL CAPS and it took me much too long to recognize what was really going on.

I’m not going to outright say Luke used me to get popular on YouTube. For my own emotional well-being, I have to assume he cared about me at least a little. We enjoyed working on music together, we enjoyed performing, and I loved visiting him down in LA. But I found out after the fact from a friend of mine (one who was initially going to be in ALL CAPS with us, actually, that Luke cut from the band once things started getting serious) that Luke had approached him saying “Harry Potter music is dying down. We need to start a new band with a popular YouTube girl.”

It became increasingly apparent to me that our relationship was ALL CAPS and there wasn’t much outside of it. It was little things - but little things that hurt. He wouldn’t stand next to me in group pictures. He’d call me out on things in front of our friends, making me look stupid. And the more popular he got on YouTube, the worse it got. The less he seemed to care about me. Once I decided to come down to spend my birthday with him and we never left the house once, even when I repeatedly asked if we could do something, anything, to celebrate. Luke worked on music and I sat on his bed and eventually Sarah Snitch (who was dating Alex at the time and had caught wind of the fact that my birthday was being ignored) took it upon herself to make me a cake and bring it over. Sarah and I barely knew each other at this point (but have gone on to become very close friends).

Luke also found a way to make sure I never got a penny of our first ALL CAPS album, “Songs in the Key of Email”. This has always been my most humiliating secret, but one the world should know. He helped me with a Parselmouths album around the time “Songs in the Key” came out, so we made a deal to  ”square up after a year of sales”, which in hindsight was incredibly stupid of me. ALWAYS GET A CONTRACT. I don’t care if you’re creating something with your best friend or your boyfriend or your mom, ALWAYS GET A CONTRACT. After a year of ALL CAPS exceptionally outselling any revenue the Parselmouths album brought in, I timidly tried to bring it up. Luke got furious with me, claiming we’d agreed I’d just take the money from the Parselmouths album while he took the ALL CAPS money. I had no proof we DIDN’T agree on this, since there was no contract. I had absolutely zero power in the band and even less in our relationship, so I dropped it - feeling like a fool.

In August of 2010, Luke dumped me right at the start of the ROFLCOPTOUR tour. He didn’t want our fans to know though, since it would be bad for the band’s image. So for months I pretended we were dating in public while he continued to manipulate nearly everything I did - only now he didn’t owe me anything, since he “wasn’t my boyfriend”. I took it really hard, since the normal thing to do after a breakup is to get distance and space to heal, but no - I was still required to go on tour and beg him to “Don’t Unplug Me” on stage and be in his videos. Not to mention he still found it acceptable to try and sleep with me, any time we were together, even after we broke up. I didn’t want to be broken up - I kept agreeing to more shows and another album and more trips because I thought I would lose ALL CAPS, I thought I would lose my LA friends, and I couldn’t face another public break up. So even though our “relationship” only consisted of three things - performing, sleeping together, and fighting - I persisted.

Around this time was when I found out Luke had met another girl on the side, at his river rafting job he used to hold in the summer. He was very obviously seeing her as well, even though he swore they were just friends. Once I came to LA for a week to stay with Luke and he forgot I was coming - booking a trip to see her that overlapped with my trip by two whole days. I begged him not to go, but he did anyway. I stayed at Luke’s house for two days by myself while he was visiting another girl.

Eventually, Luke told me we should start seeing other people. It hurt, but ultimately I thought it was a good thing. I agreed, and actually ended up going on a date with a guy from Seattle about a week later. When Luke found out, he did not take it well. I thought I was doing what we’d agreed to do, but he called me multiple times during the date, begging me to go home, begging me not to see anyone else. The next time I was in LA, he told me we should get back together. I didn’t trust him (especially because of the river rafting girl), but I was emotionally chained to the idea of needing ALL CAPS - so I agreed I would try it. I told him I needed a little time to learn to trust him again, but he told me if I didn’t sleep with him on that trip, I wasn’t serious about getting back together and it must mean that I slept with Seattle guy on my date. This was absolutely ridiculous, but he forced me to have sex with him to PROVE I hadn’t slept with someone else. 

Regardless, I still felt like ALL CAPS was important enough to try to make things work. I invited him to come visit me in Seattle on my birthday, but it turned out river rafting girl was already coming to visit him during that time. I asked him to be honest with her about the fact that we were getting back together - surely if he explained to her that we needed to work on our relationship, she would understand how inappropriate it was for her to visit? Surely HE would see that, and visit me instead?

He refused to cancel the trip. So, I was supposed to believe that even though he had another girl visiting and sleeping in his bed on MY BIRTHDAY, he was serious about getting back together with me? Somehow through all of this, I was made out to be the crazy one. I was the untrusting, paranoid, jealous one. I was the one who didn’t work hard enough to make ALL CAPS more popular, who “should have learned how to use FL Studios by now”, who “wasn’t pulling her weight in the band”.

Also, mind you, most of the Internet still thought we were the happy couple in ALL CAPS at this point. I wasn’t losing my boyfriend to World of Warcraft, I was losing my sanity to a manipulative, abusive, selfish guy. I was miserable, I would cry all the time, and my friends were beyond concerned. My friends hated Luke. But it was a situation in which I could only help myself - no matter how much they tried to tell me to get the hell out of there, he made me feel like without ALL CAPS, I would be nothing. I honestly felt worthless. Even though he’d leeched most of his new found success from me, he still made me feel like I owed him.

This is getting extremely long, but here’s how things ended: We never got back together for real, but I was still a slave to keeping up appearances for our band. I was even making preparations to move to LA to pursue it once and for all. I was going to move in with a mutual female friend of ours, until I found out she was also sleeping with Luke behind my back. It was at this point, this final straw, that I gave a big middle finger to the band, decided to stay in Seattle, and cut Luke out completely.

People think I quit ALL CAPS because of my vocal nodes - and that’s partially true. Luke got off easy in that sense. In fact, Luke’s part of the reason my nodes got as bad as they did, because he was pretty sure it was something I was making up and encouraged me to sing through it all the time. But the real reason I quit ALL CAPS is because the time I spent with Luke held some of the lowest moments in my entire life. I’ve hardly even spoken to him since then, and I can’t even begin to illustrate for you how much better my life has been for it. My channel growth may have suffered, I may have needed to avoid the entire city of LA for awhile, but the time I took to heal was some of the most important time I ever took. And even though I’m doing a hundred times better - it wasn’t until this stuff started coming out about other YouTubers that I really had to face the truth of what being in a band and relationship with Luke Conard did to me.

No matter who you are or what the outstanding circumstances are, you deserve to be with someone who loves and respects you. I can’t stress this enough. No one is worth compromising your self-respect for. It’s breaking my heart to find out that so many people on YouTube abuse their power in this way, and even to this day I am still extremely terrified of Luke and what his reaction will be to my posting this. But I can’t stay quiet about it any longer. I told myself I would never be this open about my personal life ever again, but this is a story that needed to be told.

You can choose to like someone’s music or videos and that’s fine - I’m not on a witch hunt to ruin anyone’s career. I’m writing this 100% as a warning to other people who might find themselves on the receiving end of abuse and manipulation, especially if that comes from someone you’re a fan of. It’s a power imbalance that will never go away and it’s unhealthy and I just don’t want to see anyone else hurt by another person with an inflated ego from Internet fame. We can’t keep turning a blind eye to this kind of behavior, and I wrote this post to show that even though I wasn’t underage when these things happened to me, they’re still wrong. Even though it’s technically legal to treat someone like crap, it doesn’t make it okay.

This community is supposed to be safe. It’s supposed to be welcoming and beautiful and happy. We need to look out for each other and I’m so glad that so many people are speaking up so we can start to do that even better.

I was trimming my beard and then chopped off way to much and so I just went with it and trimmed the whole thing fairly close.

It turned out pretty well. I was thinking of getting a haircut this weekend or sometime soon, so the haircut will go nicely with a shave.

whisperingf0rests:

artbymoga:

Most importantly: you’re stronger than you think.

WHY DOES THIS NOT HAVE MORE NOTES

heart-filled-with-hope:

100 Reasons to Stay Alive~
Just a friendly reminder in case you had forgotten all of the wonderful little things that makes life worth the struggle~

Wrote up this list as an additional page on my blog and will be adding more as time goes on. If you have any suggestions you want to see on this list, feel free to message me. 

Life is worth it. 
I love you.

You will be stupid. You will worry your parents. You will question your own choices, your relationships, your jobs, your friends, where you live, what you studied in college, that you went to college at all… If that happens, you’re doing it right.
Ira Glass (via mylittlebookofquotes)

tyleroakley:

This cover of “LET IT GO” might be the best one yet.

I Was Tagged
Rule 1: Always post the rules
Rule2: Answer all the questions the person who tagged you asked, then write 11 new ones
Rule 3: Tag 11 people and link them to the post
Rule 4: actually tell them you tagged them


Questions from Michelle (snogboxes-arecool):


1. What are your top 5 - top 10 favorite songs?
These top 5 music pics are sorta random from my iTunes and they are constantly changing. No order of course.
Spinning in Rainbows by Molly Newman
All I Think About by The Moaning Myrtles
This Universe Terrifies Me by The Casual Terrorist
Christmas Light by Paul Baribeau
What You See Is What You Get by Shoulders

2. What’s the funniest thing that’s happened in your life so far?
The funniest things that has happened in my life was that I got drunk in Boulder, CO. I was so far gone that I spent over 20 minutes climbing a hill that a sober person could do in 1 minute. After many other drunken shenanigans I passed out against a pillar outside of the University of Boulder’s library. I was only visiting for the weekend…

3. What’s your fondest memory from your childhood?
The fondest memory of my childhood was that I was best friends with this girl named Adriana all throughout elementary. We went together like peas and carrots. We went to different middle schools and lost contact though. I was never able to find her again even after social media, so I guess she moved away shortly after/during middle school.

4. Favorite childhood book/movie?
Odds say my favorite childhood movie was The Pagemaster.

5. Best “that’s what she said” phrase that you’ve heard?
Most of my friends in university were very immature, so I can’t recall any specific “that’s what she said” moments.

6. Are you going to be watching the Olympics this year?
I’m more of a fan of the Summer Olympics. I was the Summer Olympics essentially all day and then recaps when nothing is happening. The Winter Olympics I doubt I’ll catch much.

7. If you could be an animal for a day, what would you be?
Being a Peregrine Falcon sounds pretty awesome. It’s merely the traveling factor that appeals to me.

8. What do you consider your second home? or third home? (Ex: For some people it’s a coffee shop or their friend’s house)
I had multiple second homes over the years. Both of these homes were my best friend’s places growing up, but now they live with their significant others… Sad days.


9. What’s a movie, book, or music release that you’re anticipating right now?
I guess I’m only really waiting for the last installment of The Hobbit.


10. How do you cheer yourself up after a hard day?
I usually just try to distract myself after a hard day. As night comes the memories of the day just haunt me to sleep.

11. What’s the best thing that you’ve ever created? (Ex: a paper you wrote, a poem, a skit, a song, a sculpture, a doodle, etc.)
The best things I have ever created were friendships. Too bad it’s not as easy to maintain relationships as it once was to make them.  

My Questions:
1.)If you could you alter one decision in your life what would it be?
2.)If you have ever told someone you liked them before they said it to you how did they react?
3.) Are you jealous of the lives of any of your friends?
4.) Have you ever ended a friendship? If so then how?
5.) Why did you last love end?
6.) What drink is the most nostalgic for you?
7.) Most embarrassing drinking memory?
8.) If money was no option where would you want to travel?
9.) What book did you finish reading and felt as if you just wasted your time?
10.) Do you ever wish that you could revisit old flings?
11.) What is your most memorable season of the year? Highlight?

snogboxes-arecool:

You know, I see so many posts on here where you guys claim you’re ugly and it makes me sad. I want to hug all of you. I want you to know that even though I don’t know you or even know what you look like, I think you’re beautiful. I really do. You guys reblog stuff about helping others and you…

Warning

It has come to my attention that somehow spam was being sent through my account.

I only hope the link that was sent did not give you any kind of virus.

tyleroakley:

EVERY OTHER TRAILER CAN BOW DOWN.