I could use some help
I’m not sure where to turn on this and could use some help to get pointed in the right direction.
I’ve been on EBT (aka food stamps) for a few years, now. I started in Oklahoma, obviously. While there, I got around $160 a month, I think. When I moved to New York, I was able to get benefits again, this time for $189 a month due to the increased cost of living out here.
I was just processed for my yearly renewal. I don’t know what happened. My circumstances have not changed in any way. Maybe I filled the form out wrong, though I swear I did it the same was as when I applied. My benefits have been dropped to $43 a month. There’s no way I can eat on that.
When I called the number on the notice, I realized my cast worker is named I. M. Worker (WTF?!). The lady I spoke to said that it was because my rent was so low (I pay half of an $800 a month rent), the power bill isn’t in my name (even though I still pay half), and that I have no medical bills (which is a HUGE mistake on their part). She said there’s nothing I could do and that I should move to another state if I wanted better benefits (excuse me?!).
I’m having panic attacks about this. Just writing this post is killing me. I have no one to really turn to here. My friends turn to me for help with government agencies. The people that help me with things only help me with school related matters.
I don’t know what to do. Can anyone help me?
The Problem With the Brony Community
It’s taken me a long time to come to this conclusion, so know I don’t make it lightly. The brony fandom is not as welcoming, friendly, and inclusive as it advertises itself as. While I consider myself a brony/pegasister, and am a huge fan of the My Little Pony show and all the fan works that it has spawned, I’ve never truly felt like part of the community. I’ve tried– oh god have I tried. I’ve just never been accepted. This makes me extremely sad and frustrated. I wanted to address this publicly and explain what helped me come to this conclusion so that others in my position wouldn’t feel as alone as I have. I’m sure there are many others like me.
I came to the brony fandom between season 1 and 2 of the show. Rachel and I found a fan work on YouTube and at the time, thought it was done by the show itself. Fans couldn’t create something this amusing. Based on that, we bought season 1 on iTunes and started watching it. Rachel was hooked right away, and I fell in love after about six episodes. When I learned the scope of the fandom, I decided to jump in head first.
Initially, since I was still on Reddit, I joined the main pony subreddit. I tried to contribute to posts, but almost never got replies or upvotes on comments, no matter how well thought out they were. I figured that this must just be Reddit, so I just let it go. I also joined several pony message forums and tried to join the communities there. My original posts never got any replies, and my comments on other threads were overlooked and never acknowledged. After six months of trying to be a part of these forums, I gave up completely.
One thing that bronies are big on is music. There are tons of remixes of songs from the show and also lots of original works. One of my favorites, and a fairly popular one to remix, was Pinkie Pie’s Smile Song. I decided to put my own twist on this and remix it. This is around the time my hand disability was about to become so bad it was going to push me out of music writing for good, so it was a lot of work. I removed the original instrumental track and did my own in a dark industrial style. I even adding my own death metalish backing vocals to go with the original Pinkie Pie vocals. I then edited it together with the video footage from the actual episode. I submitted links to my video on Reddit, the pony forums I was part of, and Equestria Daily. On Reddit, it was downvoted into non-existence in every pony forum I posted it. On the message boards, it was ignored. Equestria Daily never even replied to my submission email and never posted the video. To this day, it has under 100 views and mostly negative votes. I know it’s not bad. I just don’t know why the reaction has been what it is.
When BronyCon 2014 was something that was bound to happen for us, I applied to be a band performing at Bronypalooza. In my application, I mentioned my hand issues and said that it would be my farewell performance. I was going to do my version of the Smile Song and a handful of original songs and that I’d be happy with even just twenty minutes of stage time. I didn’t’ get a reply for months only to finally be told I’d be a better fit for their “open mic” thing. I wasn’t told anything about that and how it would work, even after asking. I finally had to just give up on having a farewell performance for my prestigious 17 year music career. At this point, I was beginning to get used to the radio silence on everything.
Finally, there was BronyCon 2014. Rachel and I went in full cosplay. We were barely acknowledged the entire time. The only time someone spoke to me was when I had the yellow or red tags showing on my badge from being overwhelmed. I did have a picture taken of me by someone who said they were BronyCon staff while I was dressed up, but after looking at all ~3000 photos from the weekend, I wasn’t anywhere to be seen. I shouldn’t be surprised. I also submitted photos of my two cosplays and Rachel’s Flufflepuff cosplay to Equestria Daily. I got no reply to the submission and wasn’t included in the most recent cosplay gallery. I don’t know if it’s because we can’t stand to be out in the bright sun or if we’re just not pretty enough or something.
When I contacted BronyCon staff in advance about disability accommodations, I was told just to ask about them from the staff on site and I’d be able to get anything I needed. Problem is, it didn’t work like this. When I needed staff, there were none to find. I’d try contacting someone via the BronyCon twitter account and no one would ever answer. Even when I did get help, they had no idea what to do and didn’t listen to what I needed, so I never got the accommodations I needed. It was a massive failure and kept me from accessing several part of the con I wanted to be part of. When I wrote my open letter and showed it to the people that ran BronyCon, the reply I got was along the lines of: You seemed to have a problem more with the hotel and you liked the con. Go complain to the hotel. It totally missed the issue of accessibility and showed they either don’t care, don’t understand, or possibly both.
Lastly, while at BronyCon, I was constantly misgendered and called male pronouns and the like. I know there are a bunch of guys in dresses, but this even happened when in my street clothes (skirt, tight t-shirt with boobs clearly visible). When I would correct people, they’d pretend not to hear, or just ignore it and keep up with the male pronouns. Again, it’s like no one cared about my feelings on this.
I’m leaving out several other events to just report the most blatent and obvious issues I’ve encountered. I’m still a pegasister, but I just don’t feel like I’m part of the fan community or that I ever will be. It’s truly sad considering the amount of passion I have for the series. All of this goes to show that bronies aren’t as friendly and welcoming as they claim to be.
Sharing this here for all the aspies in the same spot as me. I wrote this earlier today for my personal blog, but it applies here, too.
holy shit reallyy???? this changes so much thank you
yes, really. virtually every late-diagnosed autistic person i know has copied other autistic people to relearn natural mannerisms; so have lots of people who were diagnosed in childhood but trained out of their natural mannerisms.
i am an Extreme Faker because i don’t even remember ever flapping or rocking as a child, but i do both now. when i was first re-learning how to move my body, those were two motions i knew autistic people do, so i did them. and now i do them a lot.
the only explanation i can think of is that i picked up how i was Supposed to act very easily and quickly, without being told.
but if something makes your life easier, and suddenly you aren’t using energy to suppress it, then doing that thing makes sense.
IDEK. we get neurotypicality so ingrained in us and forced on us that i think copying each other is a valuable, necessary tool.
bless this post. my adult stims are different than my childhood stims, because people change as they grow, and sometimes i do absorb stims from my autistic friends.
The worst part about anxiety disorders is that even though you know how irrational and stupid your fear is, you can’t help panicking.people never seen to understand this & it’s really frustrating to explain that you KNOW it’s stupid to feel like this but you can’t help it.