Greetings once again, Gentle Readers. In the continuing saga of “the little coup d’etat that tried”, GrumpyVamp is pleased to present another eloquent rebuttal to the document posted in our previous article, The “Med” Sang Menace. This time, you’ll hear from Elizabeth Hopka, web administrator of The Black Books. For those not in the know, The Black Books is a library site that hosts educational documents by and for the GVC. Go check it out.
While Ms. Hopka touches on some of the same points of contention as our previous guest post from Blacklight, she also brings up other salient issues which Blacklight did not address. Ms. Hopka even went so far as to contact the co-authors of the document so that you could hear from them. GrumpyVamp commends her for her initiative. Once again, this is a fairly lengthy guest post, but again, it’s well worth reading. Grumpy hopes our audience will take time to do so.
GrumpyVamp is also pleased to inform our readers that our staff is in contact with the administration team of The Red Cellar and we intend to bring you their statements in the near future. Watch this space for further developments.
Want to write a guest post for GrumpyVamp? See our Contributor Guidelines for more information. And now, GrumpyVamp yields the floor to Elizabeth Hopka.
Controversy Regarding The Leaked File from Some TRC Members
22rd October, 2018
This article will focus on disassembling and analyzing “The Document” in order to break it down into more concise points.
The views expressed here are not particularly shared by any other members of The Black Books and are not reflective of The Black Books’ stance. I (Elizabeth Hopka) am speaking on behalf of only myself.
I’m usually one to respect the privacy of material which was leaked without permission but I feel this is an exceptional circumstance, considering the vile content of it and that the document’s apparent authors do take part in leadership roles around the VC in some places.
So, What’s Going On?
On October 19th, 2018, Sylvere Ap Leanan posted an article on grumpyvamp.wordpress.com, where they talk of a copy of a document they received “that has been circulating for a few weeks in the back-channels of the GVC”. The document appears to be a draft, promoting controversial views on psis and otherkin, criticizing the leadership of The Red Cellar (“TRC”) and much more.
According to the document, the authors are Spooky (AKA SpookyCasper) & Jamie (AKA Jamie Linton), 2 Med-Sangs who (used to) frequent The Red Cellar. The editor’s name was redacted and is usually named ‘Blank’ or ‘Name Blank’.
So, why break it down? Well, most of the document is unrelated information, usually about sociology or psychology that isn’t directly relevant but is used to pretext or soften an upcoming statement. Most of it isn’t needed and is 90% pretext and indirect jabs.
With that out the way, let’s dive straight into it.
Analysis/Breaking it Down
A Change in Terminology
“Psi’s will be referred to as Energy Manipulating Witches, or EMW’s.”
There’s no reason to invent a new term for something that already exists, unless you’re trying to imply that something is wrong with the current term. Moving away from Psi [Vampire] implies that these individuals don’t actually need to feed off other’s energy.
“Otherkin will also be used as Species Dysphoria.”
Species Dysphoria is a psychological term that describes the feeling that one’s body is not of the right species. It’s questionable as to why they’re using these different terms.
We’re all “Story-Telling”
“Not all content will be received well and the creators of this document do not wish to have the Therians, Otherkin, Mystics and Energy Manipulating Witches having alarming issues with their storytelling identities.”
“We all know and are aware, that the ‘Energy Manipulating Witches,’ or ‘EMW’s’ enjoy their story-telling identities and are in love with the word ‘Vampire.’ “
“The junk Food in this case are the EMW’s or any other irrational outcast.”
You’re going to hear “story-telling” a lot in the document. They’re basically implying that Therian, Otherkin and Psi identities are created when one gets caught up in telling themselves fictional stories until they believe it to be true, and are not valid.
It’s all in our head and these authors, our saviors, are going to save us from our irrationality! At least, that’s the tone set during the document.
“Redirections is a tool used in psychology as an intervention to story-editing. It aims to assist in reshaping of a person’s narratives that they tell themselves.”
“The majority of the reasons the stories exist are to create some kind of comfort…”
“A rational that is accustomed to storytelling, belief in imagination and fiction holds their hearts in the songs of childhood. If unchecked or challenged they can fall into creating identities that are self-deprecating and centered around esoterism.“
“If the fictional identity is allowed to develop, like a cancer becomes malignant, and spreads, so does this harmful identity, moving from storytelling, to a socially impactful mode of story-promoting.”
“Redirection is diverging the mind away from the irrational self polluted story-telling…”
Sanguinarian is also an identity – with no scientific support – That the general population would have a hard time taking seriously. Your own identity should be measured by the same measure that you apply to these identities.
They advise against people who have story-telling identities from helping someone else overcome their own story-telling identity (“Blind leading the blind”) which is exactly what they’re doing by their own logic.
They’re using this logic to invalidate others’ identities while not their own. They imply that these identities can and should be cured which suggests an intolerance towards those with these identities or spiritual beliefs.
You’re Actually Selfish
These authors just want to quickly point out that some of you, who are dedicating yourself to your communities and support of others, are actually being selfish! They do this by – yet again – referencing psychology, this time Altruism.
“with the story of the ‘Drowning Piglets’. One would perceive the individual that saves the piglets from drowning as being an true Altruist, but in fact there are several Egoist drives that a person does not actively think about, but act them to prevent negative feels or repercussion in the future.
By saving the piglet you could be saving yourself from feeling guilt for letting them drown. You could be doing it to bring up your social standing and praise for saving them. You could also be saving them, because by next year they will food to eat…
All of these action from the perceived ‘good’ action are all selfish at the core.”
What they’re saying may be arguably and psychologically correct, sure, but it’s irrelevant to the points being made and seems to be an attempt to invalidate some leaders’ hard work.
What they’re doing here is pre-texting criticism towards the TRC leaders that comes up later on in the document.
The TRC is Drugged out of its Mind!
Now, for the record, I don’t frequent TRC so what I can question about these statements is limited but there are still issues here.
“It appears the use of prescription drugs is widespread within the TRC. While there are conditions where medication is used to manage the symptoms legitimately, the sheer quantity of drugs, used amongst members is alarming.
“Conversations within the TRC have oft resembled kids comparing their baseball card collections, instead only comparing drugs and symptoms.”
“…it is a social environment where prescription drug use and poor health is standard.”
It sounds like many people in TRC are being prescribed medications, getting the medical help they need, raising awareness and sharing experiences about their medications and illnesses within the community. Isn’t that a healthy thing? I think more people need to talk about mental illnesses to help raise awareness and kill off stigma. A stigma which they apparently enjoy feeding.
By assuming when they say “the symptoms” they’re referring to symptoms of blood deprivation, it starts to look like they may be criticizing people for relying on prescription drugs instead of drinking blood to relieve their symptoms. If this is true, they’re suggesting that people take their advice over a medical professional’s, which is the very thing they’re criticizing in others.
“The sheer ubiquitous presence of drug use within the space, suggests there might be symptoms and issues and side effects that are aggravating or contributing to the illusionary inclination of a blood need. While not always the case, it cannot be ruled out.”
What right do you have to suggest that people’s drug use may be contributing to their symptoms of blood need? Let alone blatantly calling it “illusionary”? In a way, you’re providing medical advice which I doubt you have experience, training or citations for. Perhaps these two believe that a well fed sang does not suffer from disease nor require any medication? It’s hard to tell with it being so ambiguous.
Basically, they’re calling out TRC members in general, stating:
1) There’s a correlation between drug treatment for mental health and being sanguinarian.
2) The need for blood these people perceive in themselves is “illusionary”.
At this point, it’s beginning to feel like they’re painting a negative light on medical treatments. Mental illnesses are common and prevalent in all groups and cultures, and they come in all shapes and sizes, mild to severe. Just because you are receiving treatment for a mental illness doesn’t mean your ability to perceive reality and your own condition is skewed.
Frankly, questioning someone’s claimed condition or need – especially without reputable facts – is a line I wouldn’t cross, or even touch with a ten-foot pole. Especially with such baseless logic. Yeesh.
The Leaders of TRC are Doing ‘it’ All Wrong!
I’m not sure how a leader of their own community, the one in charge for its vision and direction, can be doing it all wrong unless its members’ safeties are jeopardized.
That being said, while most of the criticisms which the authors send their way are subjective and shaky, I found one point which could possibly fit this criteria.
“TRC is attempting to play doctor for political standing ground within the OVC as well as being overwhelmed by the need to feel useful and inclusive.“
Oof. Their one claim which only possibly has validity to it, is the criticism that TRC members are giving out medical advice to people without being adequately trained or knowing their situation well enough. No proofs or examples were provided, so I don’t know how accurate this is, though. The only examples I found within the document were the sharing of experiences and treatments they were pursuing, which, once again, is a good thing.
“Conversations about suicide, substance abuse, mental health and debilitating physical conditions should be done in a clinical office with a doctor or therapist.”
What concerns me, however, is that apparently, these issues, personal stories and experiences shouldn’t be shared at all, which I disagree with. Of course, there is a line between talking about depression and telling someone to specifically purchase a bottle of Vilbryd because it worked for them, but I received no examples that the latter case was occurring.
One of their reasonings for such criticism is that community managers have the potential to be found liable if someone is hurt or killed as a result of information exchanged within their community. A decent PSA, for what it’s worth.
“Our leadership has undergone some change since the flood doors opening, however without an agenda of how to move forward; welcoming individuals of all flavours, while still being able to support sangs, as the original intent, has been lost. The leaders have been repurposed and their nature taken advantage of.”
Just because you haven’t been clued in, doesn’t mean that they don’t have an agenda or direction, and just because you don’t agree with their decisions doesn’t mean they’re being “taken advantage of”.
Personally Criticizing the Leaders
Ok, so, remember the pretext from earlier about people actually being selfish? This part is what that was for.
They go on to criticize individual TRC leaders personally, but without specifying actual names. I normally wouldn’t have a problem with someone criticizing a leader but at least make sense.
“Leader No.1 direly needs to feel appreciated, busy with purpose and revels when importance weighs down on each shoulder.”
So, they’re a normal, community-focused person? Of course the pretext paints it in a different light, but you’ll know all about that if you view the document. After all, why use logic for your arguments when you can just slather everything with negative pretext?
They go on to “criticize” them further, make another jab at psis (you know the drill) and then provide yet another creative analogy for why they can’t just jump ship and create their own group.
They also “criticize” another unnamed leader.
They’re Ruining our Environment! They’re crazy!
Now for one of the more subjective criticisms.
The criticism which takes up the most space is one about TRC opening its borders. Basically, they’re upset that their room is now plagued with “irrational cast-outs” and believe that they’re self-deprecating by “opening the borders”.
They’re pro-separation, believing that Med-Sangs and the rest of the VC should remain separated, and – for what it’s worth – I can actually see the reasoning behind that.
“However, if an outsider glanced in they would just see a sea of pill popping people addicted to not only medication, but the need to be the most diseased, sickened or mentally unstable.”
There’s many subtle, indirect texts in here that seem to suggest that it is because of the influx of psis and others that the TRC is now riddled with those who “pop pills” and are “mentally unstable”.
I believe that the authors’ views on psis, therian and otherkin is that they’re mentally ill individuals.
Otherkin! You can be Cured!
I’m going to summarize the authors’ thoughts before providing any quotes here:
- If you’re otherkin, it’s not a valid identity or belief, whether spiritual or otherwise.
- It’s all in your head! You can and should be cured using a psychological treatment known as redirection.
- The only reason you feel this way is because you’ve been tricking and lying to yourself this entire time.
“Before I get deep into this section. Redirection is a beautiful, but scary thing that unequivocally cures Species Dysphoria colloquially known as Otherkin.”
I conducted some research into this treatment, and the texts I’ve found are pointed towards children (and not adults, for what that’s worth) who experience what’s known as Species Dysphoria. They use what’s known as redirection.
When I messaged Spooky, asking for citation on this I was provided with the name for a book but nothing in more detail. Unfortunately it costs money to view the contents, so I couldn’t try to find exactly what she was citing. The book’s name is “Redirect: The Surprising New Science of Psychological Change, by Timothy D. Wilson. August 2011”.
That being said, and in all fairness, such avenues do warrant further investigation. After all, the more perspectives from which to approach your identity, the better.
“Redirections is a tool used in psychology as an intervention to story-editing. It aims to assist in reshaping of a person’s narratives that they tell themselves.”
In layman’s words (at least to my interpretation), it means getting your mind off of it. Remember that – according to the authors – this applies to Therian, Otherkin and Psi identities. Who knew the cure to needing to psi feed was just getting your mind off of it. Get a hobby, guys! You could pick up painting if your hands aren’t trembling too much from lack of feeding.
The Blind Cannot Lead the Blind
Around this part of the document, the authors are providing guidelines on how to aid someone with these story-telling identities.
“Do lead the individual away from the conversation into a controversial one. Use clear and indisputable facts if you are going to propose a counter.
If you take on the front of rationality through facts, be prepared for them to get extremely sensitive and/or defensive. Keep in mind this is the world they live in within their mind…”
They then state that you shouldn’t try to help these people if you have a story-telling identity yourself.
‘…similar to a drowning person reaching out a hand to another a few feet deeper. Either both drown, or one crawls out, but nothing constructive comes out of the situation. Another useful expression, is the “blind, leading the blind”.’
So they’re giving advice on helping people with this while advising that those still with story-telling identities shouldn’t. Sure, that’s not hypocritical…unless the authors themselves have story-telling identities too, right?
Well, the condition they claim to have (being Sanguinarian) is one which still hasn’t been scientifically supported and one that seems ridiculous to your everyday folk. But it’s real to you, right? By your same logic, can I suggest that you, too, have a story-telling identity? I think you need a hobby.
To be clear, I’m criticizing their hypocritical logic and not questioning sanguinarian or med-sang identities. Scientifically pursuing the reason for all of this is extremely important and I commend those who put it in the time and effort so that all of us can one day profit.
Fuck you, Brethren!
Let’s continue analyzing the words of the Goddesses of the Burnt Bridges.
‘It is fine clean, clear and simple if you do not take blood regularly you clearly do not have a dire “need” for it. At this point you need to be honest with yourself, and say that you only “want” the experience of drinking blood.’
Because fuck those who – for the time being – have no access to donors or maybe live in a country where it’s harder to find donors or where the act of looking for donors may put them at risk of injury or death. Apparently, you’re not a real sanguinarian!
By the way, this is coming from two people who have a pile of donors at their disposal and whom live in countries where they could be open about this and – at most – receive ridicule or shunning.
“Think of the Med-Sangs and the EMW’s as children fighting over the claim to the same toy.”
I’m curious as to whether they expected this to be received well by any group or peoples.
A Hilarious Analogy
“However if we were to imagine a whale as the representation of gall, tenacity and standing point of what is the Med-Sangs.
The weight of this whale weighing down on the OVC has created a large impression, however when this whale is asked to swim in a cup of water it quickly starts cracking the walls of the cup.
To keep itself with the constructive confines it has resorted to cutting pounds of flesh from the internal infrastructure.”
I love this analogy so much that I had to include it somewhere, it’s hilarious. Could they really not think of another analogy for this?! I love it.
I reached out to them and asked a few questions. I’m going to paraphrase and address some of their first responses when I first criticized them.
“I never meant to offend anyone”
I’ll respond with your own quotes:
- “Not to sugar coat this next paragraph will feel a bit condescending or harsh, but considering the nature of the document it tends to be be worded in a way that is extremely forward and forthcoming.”
- “There is not enough certified therapists on staff in the GVC to assist in the crisis this document could potentially create.”
- “This document will challenge you.”
- “Everyone needs to sit down. I am the torch lighter.”
“It was never meant to be released.”
More quotes from you:
- “This document is to be allowed to be spread to the GVC, please remove any content that is in italics (that is not a famous quote) .”
- “Considering this document is for the eyes of the leaders of TRC and Lampreys, should we exhaust effort in VCN cesspool?”
“It’s a draft! We were going to revise it into something less offensive”
I interpret that as meaning that they were going to try to do a better job of covering up their covert hatred for identities and views they disagree with.
It’s not a valid excuse for writing something that appears to originate from hateful, close-minded individuals and – judging by their response – completely misses the point.
Official Responses to Interview Questions
In the interest of giving these authors an opportunity to explain themselves, I asked if they’d like to provide a general message to the communities.
I’d like to apologize.
I regret its creation, I regret the carelessness if the words, the carelessness of who it could hurt, the trust that would be broken. I never intended to hurt anyone, never intended to coup, never intended for any of this.
The pain of lost friendships, communities, the loneliness of estrangement. I have love for so many, my friends at the RedCellar, my friends in DarkenedMirror, and throughout the VC. I repaid their friendship with a mistake, an effort that never should have been undertaken, words I cannot take back.
I care about our community, but I’ve hurt it, I love you all but I’ve hurt you. I know my words may not assuage any of the harm I’ve done, if I could take it back I would have, but I cannot. I am not a hateful person, and I have resolved to earn your trust.
– Jamie & Spooky
To be Fair
In the interest of fairness, there’s no guarantee that some things weren’t added, removed or altered by others on its way to that page. I made my criticisms here assuming that these were in-fact the authors for the document, that it was unaltered and that they’re both equally responsible for it.
There’s more I could include in this document but the rest is just verbal diarrhea, a slop of incoherence.
This document is vile, hypocritical and saturated with hateful, baseless, irrational words which targets basically everyone and everything. The feeling I get from reading the document is that the authors revel in provoking emotional responses from people, and that causing an uproar was intentional.
Identities (and the people who associate with them) need to be respected. Just 50 years ago, concepts such as homosexuality and transgender identities were not understood but ridiculed, and there were no scientific studies validating them, but a lot has changed since then. I see a similar mindset of intolerance from these individuals.
These people hold disgusting, troubling and intolerant views that are not befitting of this community. Not in the slightest.
I don’t know what their problem is but I hope that over the next few years they identify it and fix it because out of everyone they addressed here, it’s them that needs help.
Many may know me as hybrid (sang & psi) but very few are aware that I’m also Otherkin. Up until now, I’ve kept it mostly to myself but I think if there’s a time to “come out”, it’s now.
That’s not the only reason this document affects me personally but also because I regarded these two as close friends within the communities. Their names were the last things I expected to see tied to this document. It hurts to think that they viewed me this way the whole time. I still find it hard to believe.
I normally wouldn’t involve myself in stuff like this but it felt too relevant and too grotesque not to comment on it.
There’s a lot more to the document and even a couple valid points. I’ve only talked about the most vile stuff but I encourage you to read the document yourselves.
So in closing, remember guys, get yourselves fixed, start (and stop) popping pills, segregate, don’t talk about mental health issues and – most importantly – get a hobby.