Shopping For Your Next Therapist?

Dear readers,

I looked through this blog, and I found nothing in it that I would consider a thing about how to help a patient shop for a therapist. If you’re one of those individuals who’s experiencing mental health issues because of the pandemic, here’s your place to learn about what to look for in a therapist that might befit the needs of someone, especially someone with a disability. I wrote a couple years back, maybe three or so, about what treatment providers can expect as they treat blind and disabled patients, but I want to talk about finding a therapist whether you’re doing this for the first time or doing this therapist shopping thing for a third time, fifth time, whatever. So here are some questions you should ask your therapist, especially without stepping on HIPAA.

First and foremost, is the therapist willing and able to work with disabled women without blaming the disability for their mental illness? Some people actually blame disability for mental illness, but certain factors such as trauma can cause mental illness. Take it from the patient who’s been there, done that, don’t like to necessarily go back and forth about it.

Is the therapist friendly and able to establish rapport with you? If the therapist feels awesome and starts establishing rapport with you, great. But listen to your guts as you should be doing with everybody anyway. If your gut feeling is that the therapist is not clicking, that’s okay. Move on to the next one.

Does the therapist have good credentials of any sort? Usually, the therapist will tell you what they specialize in, and they will give you their prerequisites, a la college and where they studied. For female therapists, I have a lot of experience with them, she will likely tell you what her experiences are with women and such, but if you prefer a male therapist, same deal. If you are a member of the LGBTQI+ community and are also disabled, it may be helpful to have a therapist who is also a part of the community, though it is not required. Black/African American therapists, according to some news things I came across, are harder to find than white ones, but don’t be shy about asking about a therapist’s experience with ethnic minorities, and do they come off as condescending or do they still click with you? If you’re of any ethnic minority, chances are you’ve struggled to find a therapist who meets the ethnic minority thing, but since there might not be one that meets your insuring requirements, be open and flexible about your choices.

Does the therapist have expperience with religious minorities? Ask any question you like about this, but for those in religious minorities groups, i.e. nonChristian groups, this is a highly important question. You may be experiencing some things related to religious stuff, so a therapist could help if they have experience with religious minorities.

Ask if the therapist can provide digital or Braille material if you’re totally blind and wish to participate in a group they facilitate? IF you want to participate in groups, odds are there will be papers to play with. So ask the therapist if they could email or help with transcribing the materials in to Braille, depending on your personal needs. Any therapist should be required to do so, but some will say some stuff about HIPAA and stuff and might not want to do this very much. It takes a bit of advocacy to do this, trust me I have a bit of experience with this.

When you first go into a therapy session for the first time with your new therapist, whether this is your first or tenth, be prepared for the good stuff. The therapist will introduce themselves, including name, college credentials if any, how many years experience they have, what they specialize in if applicable, and then they’ll start telling you the confidentiality credo that goes like, “If you are experiencing suicidal thoughts or homicidal thoughts” and remind you that whatever you say to them is confidential except in the case of suicidal or homicidal thoughts. I actually had to say this during a simulated therapy session with a social work student in college, so yeah, I know waht this is all about. You will likely have to sign a release of records, treatment papers and a consent for treatment form is among these. You will likely be asked a barrage of questions if this is your first time with the therapist, but one Facebook user has suggested grabbing your prior records if this is your second, third, or even tenth therapist you’ve gone through. I’ve been through about five or seven, but in doctors, psychiatrists, I’ve been through at least six or seven. That’s between two mental health providers.

Also, you may need to ask the therapist about how many years experience they have with working with disabled patients, and do they have papers they can share with you about the results of their treatment methodologies regarding traumas or other types of therapy. You may want talk therapy to start, but if you have specific needs, something that you want the healthcare company to cover,, talk to your therapist. Community mental health care is good for some who can’t afford private practice, and having a casework person coordinate your treatment team is a plus especially if you feel overwhelmed, so be prepared to do the same as above with a regular therapist if you’re doing intakes for community mental health.

If you want, guys, I can do a Mental Health Clinics 101 if needed. Don’t be so surprised, but mental health is a tough road to navigate for some, and during Covid it has become exhaustive for a lot of reasons. Isolation can make people go insane, quite literally. The social distancing is something that kids aren’t taking well, especially if they have suicidal thoughts going on. I’m lucky I have a partner to do lockdown with, but it’s sad when your friends can’t just drop by for your birthday or Christmas or what have you. I hope this post helps a lot.

Beth

Covid, Vaccines, and Why Science Works

Dear readers,

Please read if you really care about other people. So here goes.

Covid is a bad virus, and it kills. I have a buddy who lost both her parents to Covid 19, and it sucks. For her, she will never have Thanksgiving and Christmas gatherings for her children at the parents’ house again. Both parents being gone, her young daughters will have to cope with the loss of Grandpa and Grandma.

When I got the vaccine, I felt freer. Of course, I understand where some people are coming from. However, you should try and get the vaccine because you don’t want your parents and grandparents to die of a needless pandemic. If you have an elderly relative in a nursing home, please do me a favor and get the vaccine. Phiser has an FDA approved vaccine, and I got it before the FDA said anything, but i’m ready to wait for a booster shot. Know why we need boosters? Because of the Delta variant. My partner is so precious to me, I told him he’s getting the booster shot. I said he would die if he caught Delta. Our caregiver is amazing, but we don’t get enough time with her. We have two cartons of eggs in our fridge, and she hasn’t used them yet. She’s unvaccinated, and I hope not a victim of delta. But it’s only a matter of time, and strange clients, that she could catch covid. We’ve got lots of other reasons to get the vaccine, including I want to be able to go places, and do things, and go to concerts. Garth Brooks has canceled all five of his remaining shows. Is that fair? Covid is the top reason venues are actively canceling concerts. If you want concerts, get the vaccine. It’s the only way you can stay out of the ICU beds that are needed for other care. I have a buddy with cancer who needs treatment, but covid really messed everything up for her. Please consider she needs a place to go for treatment.

Before you travel to Euroope, read this important and timely book.

Dear readers,

So you want to go to the Eiffel Tower in Paris, France, or you want to order a beer at an actual German beer cafe or something, or perhaps you want to visit museums in Italy or the UK. You make your travel reservations, and then when you fly into Amsterdam, you want to see all the wonders that the Dutch bring to our world, but then … oh no. Some guy just cornered you and is staring at you because he wants sex. Is that what you want your European vacation to include?

If you are wondering why I wrote this, read Ayaan Hirsi Ali’s new book, entitled Prey and find out more about Europe’s problems with Muslim majority countries, and moreover its problems regarding women and females of all types being groped, stared at, intimidated. The book has a big trigger warning, so bear that in mind. However, Hirsi Ali does it again. She’s a women’s rights advocate and though she may not be a lawyer of sorts, Ayaan’s book reads like a big giant sociology project on Europe. Here’s some of the summary details of what she says in this new book. I know some of you will cringe thinking about this, but these are important details.

Ayaan Hirsi Ali takes two years out of the more recent, and gobbles up lots of news reports from those years, 2015-2016. In this book, she summarizes many attacks on women by asylum seeker men from different countries. I know where she’s going. But to summarize, she also says that immigration done right is the answer. She points out a lot is wrong with European justice systems, and because of the men in her attack profiles, most of them from Africa and the Middle East, attacking European women and getting away with practically anything, she says liberal feminists aren’t being taken seriously. We know that in prior books, Hirsi Ali summarized the security she’d been living with for lengths of time. Ayaan’s bodyguard of whatever is necessary because she gets death threats. I personally would never touch her with a ten foot pole, but I would want to meet this woman. I practically idolize her stuff, and I’ve dealt with the same sorts of things she has in regards to men. Not all men would leer at me, but some do. Some think I have a nice butt, but I have to use a bit of humor to throw it back in their faces. That doesn’t always sit well with some. Now, what would Ayaan Hirsi Ali want us to do in Europe if we’re women? Well, here’s the deal.

First, don’t walk out in the nude. These guys really think that if you walk out there naked, you’re asking for it. However, if you do want to walk out in the nude, carry mace or sprays with you. I would carry mace even here in the States because there are just some guys who won’t leave you alone if you are in their presence.

I’d require all girls seeking to do European trips to go in groups. A travel group would require you to do a curfew and be back at a certain time, and you would need to be carefully monitored as to where you are. Traveling alone is not advisable especially for females at this time. But then again, you want to avoid another Natalie Holloway, and this means you don’t want to end up on everybody’s disappearing list on the newspapers, as Holloway did. She was in Aruba, having a lot of fun, but then she started drinking. This leads to my next thing.

I’d drink responsibly in Germany. Or Ireland, UK, or anywhere else. I’d drink only a certain amount and then go right back into soft drinks and so on. Germany is a good example of a country that doesn’t let you drink if you’re not eighteen or can’t reach the beer bar. If anything, drinking is part of the cultures in the European countries you’d likely visit, so be prepared to make sure you do drink responsibly.

For LGBTQI+ travelers, again go in a group. You might have to forego walking hand in hand in certain areas with your partner given the way people might leer at you, and it isn’t even the native born species doing it.

Make sure you check in with friends and family back home regularly. IF someone attacks your travel group, prepare to defend the group and tell the local police about it. Also, get a phrasebook of the native language so you can identify words for things like, “some guy groped me” or “Some guy wanted my money.” Don’t hesitate to try out the native language if that’s what you need to do. Example, if I’m attacked in Germany, I want to tell the local police in German that “I was attacked by a guy wearing a green skull cap and I took his shirt off. He sounded like some dude from Morocco.” IF you are fluent in German, that’s all well and good. However, if some guy is attacking someone who doesn’t know the native language of the country, just try your best to describe your attack in English, of course. Most European schoolchildren today are learning English, but don’t take this for granted. You want to tell the police that your attacker was this guy who looked a certain way and wore such and such. Same thing you would do in America.

Do not let anyone walk you home. As weird as it sounds, it’s essential that only group members walk each other home.

Make sure your stuff is accounted for before and after your trip. Make sure you have all your papers in order, and if you’ve been attacked, be sure you take care of this situation with a group member partnered with you before you fly home.

As much as I’d like to say someone should walk a girl home, it’s not possible anymore. Knowing the language would make you less of a target to enemies and strangers. Example, if you visit Norway, know your Norwegian like the back of your head. There are two dialects within the language, so learn them both. Get your Norwegian in gear so you can communicate with a Norwegian policeman or woman or whoever if you get assaulted. This way, you can describe the crime that was committed against you. It would also help to learn a bit of Arabic, or even Berber, or some other languages so that if you can figure out what the attacker is doing, you can yell at him in his own tongue. That might scare the crap out of him, and knowing what to say when will get you far on the road to a successful trip to Europe. Now you can move on and look at wines and beautiful paintings and stare at stuff at all times and not worry as much.

Beth

15 years ago …

Dear readers,

It was about fifteen years ago, and May is mental health month so I’m going to be talking about mental health stuff too. It is traumatic when your family denies you basic human rights, and that’s what happened in the fall of 2004, so when I told a cop that I couldn’t live without something or someone, I was placed in the hospital. Just for that, I was later admitted to LaAmistad Behavioral Services, a place in Winter Park, and they’ve since changed, but this place had some clear frameworks for mental health habits sand care I will get into later. But it was fifteen years ago that I was discharged from LaAmistad on May 19, and since then, you gotta admit I came close once to being admitted. That was after being broken up with, and tampered with by an ex. Unfortunately, a friend in Georgia who I no longer speak to thinks I don’t live reality. What is reality/ This begs the question of what constitutes mental health?

I’ll first tell you what constitutes mental health and wellness, and then we’ll talk about the framework of mental health and care that LaAmistad set up. And then we’ll talk about thee subpar care that so many of us are subject to, and how we can fix it all.

First, someone with mental illness so severe it needs hospitalization should and must exhibit dangerous behaviors, including SIB (self injurious behavior) including cutting your body, stabbing yourself with knives and razor blades, etc. I don’t count removing scabs or mosquito bites, or even scratching at those, because insects are everywhere in Florida. And as humans, we need to be able to remove the parasites from our bodies, that includes scabies mites and bedbugs. Okay, but SIB’s are absolutely cutting and stabbing oneself, but here’s another part of the danger to oneself and others. You must have a suicide plan, and the suicide plan can be detailed or not, but if you show this plan or talk about it, someone will say you have dangerous behaviors, are a danger to yourself and others. Homicidal behavior is a big one too.

So what constitutes welllness? Psychopathy is not mental health. If you’re the type who likes to pull the ears and tail of your dog so forcefully that the dog looks at you in surprise, or if the dog howls like a maniac as you do something really bad to them, you are possibly exhibiting psychopathic behavior. Antisocial behavior can also mean starting fires, or if you’ve got a murder rap sheet, or if you think it’s okay to abuse kids and adults in a sexual manner. All these things constitute mental illness and psychopathy.

All of these behaviors or some of those behaviors put together constitute something, and you should get treatment for it. Psychopaths are not easy to treat, but here’s the other thing about that. Psychopathy is rare, it’s not like simple mental illness, complete with self injurious behaviors, not enjoying what you once loved, and threatening suicide. Let me be clear: mental wellness is not being completely free of the SIB thing, or being completely energetic. Everybody’s brain is different. Take it from me.

Also, here’s another tidbit about mental illness: 95% of us mental health patients are the victims, not the perpetrators of violent crime. Make that also the victims of theft and small crimes. When someone with mental health issues is murdered, nobody takes notice. Example: Michael Dingas was a world class runner, and he had schizophrenic symptoms by eleven or twelve, then he was almost at LaAmistad for twelve years. When I was a client there, the young man was moved to another facility, Mom was there. But there was a nice day he went out to possibly buy cigs at a convenience store, and was run over by a vehicle on the crossing. He died a few moments later, and nobody could find the perp because there were no witnesses who cared enough to say who it was. Dingas had a funeral, and I remember his grief stricken mom was in the room. I felt the energy was off, something was truly off, and his mom needed space. I would have given her a hug, but boundaries, space right? So I didn’t. The whole point of this is that if someone did run Michael over, they would have been charged with vehicular homicide, and I think it was likely due to the stigma of mental health.

Also, if you’re being treated for mental health, you should never discount what you get out of it. LaAmistad recommends that each patient in a counseling setting receive 45 minutes per week. For me, I only get it once per month because of medicaid. Medicaid is the poor man’s health insurance in the United States, for those others who are international and curious, and doesn’t always do their thing. I have an incredibly supportive partner, one good thing about me. Having friends and a support network is vital for those with mental illness, and fifteen years ago, I didn’t have that.

What else constitutes mental wellness? Well, here’s something we human modern peoples seem to lack. Can you guess what it is? Bingo, it’s empathy. Empathy is a big thing in humans, a big need for right now. It is lack of this empathy that leads a social worker to declare her case over with an abused child victim, and then the child is murdered while sitting in a dog cage. It is lack of empathy that leaves disabled and low income families in bedbug infested apartments, white gentry buying up the places that a disabled person could use, and so on and so forth. It is empathy that makes a caring person pissed off so bad that they are driven to action. LEt’s look at examples of what empathy does.

For those living in the stone age, or you haven’t paid attention to your psychology book, empathy is something that you can do with your kid, your cat, your friends, the world. Let’s start with closer to home. If you anticipate a baby’s need for milk and feeding, you act as soon as you hear the baby’s hungry cry. That’s empathy in action. When you soothe Grandma’s pain while she lies in the nursing home, and give her plenty of food she can have, that’s empathy. When you celebrate the life of your LGBTQI+ child who’s been bullied and you give them the celebratory dinner at graduation and beyond, that’s empathy. When you put yourself in another’s shoes, that is empathy. There are many people who would say I lack this, but that’s far from the truth. I have to do social justice crap because that’s what constitutes mental illness versus mental wellness. Social justice peoples are not mentally ill psychopaths. Without empathy, you can commit a multitude of crimes, and so when the baby arrives, I swear solemnly and on my dead body I will give my baby the best shot at a good life, including empathic responses to the big questions and small ones too. IF my baby needs milk, I’m going to do it. I do plan to make sure Baby is as strong as possible, and Trenton is the biggest empath I’ve ever come across. Empaths can connect with earth and people, and I could go on about the types there are, but that’s a whole other post for a different day.

I want to say though that if you do feel a consistent sadness, Baby Blues could be diagnosable as postpartum depression, and that’s okay. Just talk to your doctor and get referrals as soon as possible so you and Baby can still share moments together.

Happy mental health awareness month. And stay safe.

Beth

How to Hit Your Fitness Goals: I Hit My Fitness Rings Today

Dear readers,

I know, I know, this is the second blog post I’ve written today. But please forgive me, I’m celebrating. I hit all three of my special fitness rings today. And you know what? yoga seems to do the trick for me. I love yoga, it’s amazing, and I don’t even need a damn yoga mat to do my thing. What I need to do is strength training with some weights, and I will get weights and fitness equipment sometime. Trenton really is supportive of my fitness goals, and I have been working on these. My favorite trainer so far as I’m concerned has too be a tie between Jessica and Dustin. They are both amazing teachers, and I like how they describe the motions they are doing in yoga. The yoga flows are amazing, and I think if I could, I’d write Jessica Sky a fan letter. She’s made a big difference in my life so far.

Thank you for the time and energy reading all this fitness stuff. As they all say, close your rings, stay active, and above all, stay safe. If you do not own an Apple Watch, please feel free to invest at least in a fit bit. You don’t have to do fitness in your home, but you can take a casual walk. A brisk walk would work.

Beth

Apple Fitness Plus: My First Impressions

Dear readers,

I’ve got my fitness goal started, and I hope that there will be exercise every single day for the next 365 days in the year. The reason? Well, I’ve been on and off meds for more than twelve years, and don’t like the side effects, plus I heard a friend got gastric bypass surgery, but that’s too risky. I don’t want to take risks and lose weight that way because it would mean cutting my stomach up. Ugh.

What I’m here to write about is my first training with Jessica, one of the yoga instructors. Well, all the trainers do different stuff in Apple Fitness Plus, and let me just say the app is fully usable with voiceover. It’s powered by your apple watch and integrates tightly with workout app and the exercise rings. So how to close your rings? First, don’t forget that you can go on DND on whatever device you’re using, I learned that the hard way, especially on iPad or iPhone. Or you can use the Apple TV to do workouts on, and then you choose the workout you want, then make sure your watch is bluetoothed and unlocked, then press play on the watch. Then, away you go. I want to talk about a yoga thing I did with trainer Jessica. She’s pretty amazing, and I brought back my inner yogi. Let’s talk about this.

First, Jessica is a fast paced but easy flow trainer to work with. I haven’t done others yet, but will do soon. Second, yoga trainers generally describe how to do the workouts in detail, but you have to have some working knowledge of yoga in order to do this.

I think I could be a yogi at heart, and I enjoy practicing yoga because you don’t have to worry about the no pain no gain thing, and I feel a bit more flexible now than I did before. Core training is very cool, too. But let’s face it, I still have to do the workouts correctly. Jessica always recommends that you go at your pace, and if you don’t understand a move, you’ll understand it later on in some way. Jessica focused on spinal and low back twists and such, which is great for women. I’m talking to you, prenatal and postnatal women at most. However, I think a lot of other people could benefit from lower back and spinal twisting and a bit of warrior pose. While I got in to postures, I had to remind myself that this wasn’t Hot Yoga anymore, and I dare not use the name of that guy who invented it. He was a weirdo, so they changed his studios to Hot Yoga. India is the birthplace of yoga, but a lot of people love it, and it works a lot. Jessica even understood the resting poses like downward dog and such, things I need to get back into at all. I felt at home with her, so far. So far so good, but there are improvements I would make.

One, I think the trainer and all trainers, according to some Apple Vis subscribers to the forums, might want to consider describing and doing textual word pictures for the totally blind yogis like myself, but if you’re doing core or HIT (high intensity training), you should know how to do all the moves, and getting a good description of each move in a small attached screen is a great idea. Also, you can share the playlists each trainer does in Apple Music. I’m going to try that, and there are lots of treadmill and cycling training things, but bear with me. I don’t have a bicycle or exercise spin bike. Why? Because what else? No room. My apartment is a teeny tiny box, and we can’t put too much other crap in here.

So what is my rating for Apple Fitness Plus? I’d say 4 out of 5 stars because of the need for descriptions of movements, not in the workout tracks themselves, but anywhere and any sort of screen attached would work fine. However, this is a great way for all of us, including the deaf and blind, to get our fitness goals met. Please note that though a totally blind person can do fitness at all, we’re going to have to bear with the trainers. What I wish the thing would have done was to show my heart rate at other times too, but it was cool that voiceover read my heart rate metrics, all as shown on my watch. Another thing, my watch announced that my exercise ring was closed. Awesome, right?

Today is an all three rings got closed kind of day, but let’s be real. I want to make sure that my body loses that weight and gets stronger every day. Chicago would be absolutely proud to hear me sing that song, stronger Every Day. That’s my theme song, so my dad would say.

Anyway, tune in for more fitness journeys with me, the denver queen, here in the blog. There will be some good stuff happening.

Thank you for reading this and have a wonderful happy new year.

Beth

Thanksgiving and Podcast Updates

Dear readers,

It is with a heavy duty heart and a mind filled with worry that I have to end season 2 of the Throne Room with Beth Taurasi, and I will add … best to my ability, I will add a Thanksgiving bonus special for all of you. Why? Because I know you all are thankful for being alive today. As for Thanksgiving, it’ll just be Trenton and I having a mini feast. We won’t be able to have much in the way of turkey, and we aren’t cooking the tom or even a hen, who knows. But I do want to have broccoli casserole the way I like to make it, and I usually do it. I’m going to be blunt, I hate cooking and domestic goddess shows like all that Food Network stuff, but at the same time, well, you could say I have a love hate relationship with food shows. They don’t show you the cooking in real time. I’m going to be honest, I love the cranberry sauce. However, I think for the feast Trenton and I will try to have, we will listen to the now described Charlie Brown special, and maybe just eat some toast. I wish we could make deviled eggs like Mom used to do at breakfast, but there are some things that go along with the good that I can’t discuss here, the bad things that Mom probably doesn’t want to reveal, half of which is that I may be a mixed person. Mixed heritage is important to know, and I wonder if that is the reason my mom thought in her subconscious that I was a curse from God for opening her legs during college. So even though we shared good things, Mom really needs to define some of her actions as abusive, and work to end such actions.

For one, I don’t visit my family anyway, but I’m glad the CDC told us all to stay home and not travel. I hope my parents and family get the memo. If they don’t, serves them all right for not listening, and people won’t listen because they’re stupid, idiotic and not able to see beyond themselves.

As for what food we might have for Thanksgiving, I’m tempted to bake some Roadhouse Rolls. Yes, if I could have some favorites for this year, I want me some Roadhouse Rolls like they do at Black Eyed Pea and Texas Roadhouse. We don’t have money to go to any places, but we do have food in the house. We don’t have much to eat for Thanksgiving but I don’t know which foods might be proper for that week. We always try to stick to homemade food of course since deliveries are difficult because of the high rise building we live in. Ugh.

I have at least one good thing I’m thankful for. We had our wedding, and with few guests in the live video stream, we made it happen. It shouldn’t have come to that, but if the guy at the wet meat market hadn’t left his wares dirty enough for viruses to go swapping info, we wouldn’t be in this predicament, and there’s a four-year-old Texas boy who won’t be allowed outside the house this year. I saw an article about him in the paper, but this young kid doesn’t have his parents. Why? Because of numnuts who don’t listen. Here’s a safety message for you about Thanksgiving this year that should ring a big bell in your head. I know you’re sick of the masks, sick of covering your faces, sick of the closures, sick of it all. But as Randy Rainbow says, cover your freakin’ face!!!!!!!! Cover it, cover it up. And don’t be a fool and let those droplets go flying around. At your family’s house, with your own household, you should be fine, provided you don’t have a household member with covid. My buddy in Texas had covid but I’m keeping an eye on her dad. It’s not just the boy and my friend you should be concerned about. It’s the economic disaster that is sure to come because you weirdos don’t listen! I have a partner who survived influenza type A, and doesn’t want to get respiratory failure again. He’s now 36 years old, alive and kicking, but with a badge of honor on the back of his head. Imagine what could happen if he gets covid. Covid sucks, big time. We don’t want it in our house, we don’t want our friends and family relations to get it. So please, folks, this Thanksgiving, wear a freakin’ mask. And cover your freakin’ face, or else I’ll have to let Randy Rainbow say it louder.

Beth

Congratulations, Joe

Dear President Elect Biden,

I knew you could do this. I want to congratulate you for winning the election because for one, I’m sick of the anti immigrant rhetoric and all the crap Trump was putting out there. I was the victim of trolls on the internet, trolls that would not stop spewing hate speech when Trump first got elected in 2016. Mr. Biden, I have a political laundry list you must do in order to help disabled people and others throughout your presidency.

First, we need to update the SSI program to reflect inflation costs, moving the resource limit from $2000 to $100,000 because we can’t buy anything or keep anything or save up anything under this resource limit. A lot of independence things are beyond our resources to get, and Able accounts are out of reach because of Fifth Third Bank, and I don’t have much support in getting money for an Able account.

Do away with the marriage penalty. It is destructive to relationships like mine and Trenton’s. You won the election on a special day for us, our wedding day, which was celebrated without a license or papers to certify that we are married. Trenton and I had a commitment ceremony, something that most disabled people are forced to do because either this, that, or we choose love over caring for ourselves. We hate being selfish, and we should be allowed to be with the person we love without penalty. Period. Disabled people must dare to dream of having children, and with the pandemic sweeping the country, a new baby is a sign of hope and joy we all need.

Do something about gentrification. I’d be happy to see if Congress can tackle the issue of whites taking away housing for blacks, disabled people, and other minority groups. My partner’s black, and we’re both blind, and can’t earn money the conventional way. I’ve been wrung through MLM companies, told to do something about my lack of pulling myself up by my own bootstraps, and then some. But alas, my parents attacked my rights for fifteen years. Fifteen years and they took away the prime of my life, I should have been married at 22, had kids, and a house of my own. I should have been able to do all those things because it’s just a shame that college is expensive and it’s also a shame on the rest of the blind. They have attacked me and called me a slut, and so for personal reasons, I don’t have a job and don’t associate with orgs not willing to let me in the door. the American Council of the Blind is not present in Colorado, only the National federation of the Blind, but the Metro Denver chapters have closed their doors to me, and it all boils down to they don’t believe I’m good for anything. they want to judge and pick at behavior they believe is detrimental to work. what work? I can’t sit there and answer questions that are illegal for a job, and if I have to, what then? Most jobs require experience or a college degree, but even a college degree is not going to show anything. They’ll hire the qualified sighted person over me because of the sight. Joe, if I was in your shoes, and i was running for President, I would probably have to sue a lot of people for putting vulgar attack ads on TV against me. imagine, all those attack ads saying things like, “Beth Taurasi had multiple sex partners, married a black man illegally, can’t even find a job anywhere. We should not give her the job of messing up our country and doing a disability agenda on us.” That would be the gentry’s vulgarest attack ad possibility, but trust me, I’d have to make sure you or someone before me bans such attack ads because they’re impolite, and have nothing to do with politics. They’re personal attacks on my sex life and that’s what men often do to women, and they attack us by our looks. I choose books, but they want looks. Anyway, …

Do something about illegal questioning of disabled job applicants who are blind, especially those who are blind. Hammer it home to employer interviewers that if they don’t get it straight, that if they don’t not ask illegal questions, they will be fined or jailed for years. Do something to stop people from asking stupid questions about blindness in the formal sense of the job interview. For example, I want to be a piano teacher, but someone might ask, “Why should I hire you because you’ll touch my kid, etc etc, and you’re blind.” First and foremost, you need to get a grip. if you’re interviewing me for a piano teacher job, I’ll be honest, the touching kids thing could be taken way out of context. I would have to do what i call “poking and prodding” the hands of the young pianist who’s liable to flatten their fingers and not understand finger position. I will have the young one put their hand on top of mine so they can feel the fingers and how they’re curved. They have to be curved, at least, otherwise there’s at least one Italian pianist who does that, but who does that at all? But the truth is, if someone interviews me for that position, the only thing i can offer is that I went to college, I studied music in college, and had to drop out because of accommodations and lack of independence skills which is appropriate to the disabled. This really needs to be addressed though, as there are many blind musicians willing to contribute their voices and their skills to music and music theory. As a potential producer even, I want to put my skills to work, but the production equipment and software costs too much, so what do I need? A bigger living room, a baby grand, and young students to teach. $25 an hour is fine, but let’s face it, I don’t want to be fired for being blind. Parents would be there at all lessons, and I’d make it clear. The parent’s role will not change, my role will not change much, but still. I will teach the child to play Bach, Beethoven, and so on. But I don’t want to be under scrutiny for being blind. So Mr. Biden, make it so that we don’t have to live under scrutiny, yet you have GOP pundits ordering us to work for a man in an office.

Please make it easier for a blind musician to be noticed. Your former boss, President Barack Obama, totally went with it when he proclaimed a blindness equality day during his presidency. he was amazing, I’m not gonna lie. Obama and you both deserve the deepest congratulations.

Please ban certain GOP operatives from banning Muslims and immigrants from coming here. Get the kids out of the cages, and let them in. Do something about the border deportations of parents, and take Bethany Christian Services’s adoption license away. Be sure that gay and lesbian parents can adopt, no matter what agency they go through, and let it be known that religious affiliation is no license to discriminate. I know there are more foster kids than families. the Bethany Christian families might not be fit for all those latinx children that were taken away from their parents. I’d encourage you to invest in these kids, and take the parents with Bethany Christian out of the picture. Reverse any such Gileadean policies that promote child separation and the sale of children to these wanton organizations.

Please expand social and housing for black and minorities. Think of this as reparations for slavery. We need reparations for black males especially, not that the females have any less of a chance, but we need to address all blacks as a whole. Trenton, my husband in commitment and life itself, is black. He might be turned down for shelter in a bigger apartment, and we’re living in an unsafe wreck of a building that likes to be stupid unless you scream help for every maintaining thing you need done. Example, it took days and weeks to get some things done in the building. If I ask someone to drain the shower, I expect it done the same day because i can’t just sit there and do the shower myself. If I ask someone to fix a dorrknob with sharp edges on it, I expect it to be done, way less than it actually took to fix a doorknob on a closet. it took weeks for maintenance to actually fix the doorknob and we had to ask for it. They seriously need to learn to care about us residents or go straight to Hell, and that’s the whole thing about HUD apartments. We want a three bedroom house or apartment that can be rented or owned but it has to have safety and transport. With your expansion of social programs for the disabled and minority groups, maybe it’ll be good for us so we can have a family and live normally, and i can do gig work to get extra money on top of social security. the gig work will not be steady, so won’t be declared. that’s another thing i want you to do.

Do not allow the SSA to simply take away from those currently receiving SSI or SSDI benefits when they choose to go to work. let them, as I said before, keep a larger resource amount, especially because of inflation. But moreover, don’t tax any income we earn on top of the thing we get unless it’s over the resources limit. I’d be happy to pay taxes if I was wealthy like so many of your celebrities and … oh, did I mention Donald Trump? If he’s that damn wealthy, he should be having his taxes done. Anyway, I want to make sure you have a good laundry list of things to do for us that needs to be done.

There’s one more thing I think that could be done. Encourage Kamala to run for president in 2024, unless she says no. If not, i want Neill Patrick harris to take your place in 2024, no hurt feelings but that guy’s hilarious. Mr. Harris would be a good start to a bright future because of hot Tub time Machine 2, don’t ask me where in the movie that is because of spoilers I won’t give out. But 2025, in any case, is where the guys end up for that pportion of the movie, spoiler over.

Mr. President Elect, I’m super happy you got elected, and the champagne is flowing everywhere but take a look at what you have to do. You know you have to deal with the Corona virus pandemic, but please make that corona thing go away so we can go back and live life normally. Also, please encourage Disneyland to open because there are too many lawsuits about it by mayors, and it’s getting bad. Florida also needs a serious head check. Those people are total douchebags sometimes, not all of them but you know Florida man will make you cringe. Example, Florida man runs around naked and wrangles a gator in mid air. Florida man caught knocking Slurpee off someone. Florida man arrested for … blank blank blank. Fill in the blank with the latest crime spree, including changing the governor’s voting address. that I admit was funny, but we need to do something about those weirdos in Florida.

Anyway, thank you for believing in us as a country. Please hurry up and take the oath of office, damn it, so we can work together as a people and restore decency and health to all.

Sincerely,

Beth Taurasi

Ectogenesis Part 2: How Do We Do It??? And An Apology

Dear readers,

So for those who are abortion opponents, I want to ask you a question. How do you want to negate the need for abortion? How do you want to do it without inconveniencing women who can’t carry babies to term? When a woman’s life is threatened, especially by a baby, she can’t just carry it to term without dying. That is where ectogenesis comes in. What I mean is, basically, putting the embryo in an electric womb, something mentioned by one tech historian. And moreover, the ectogenesis I am speaking of is something you might find in Brave New World, but not the very same thing. Not only do we need to find ways to put embryos alive in a conception chamber, electric womb, whatever, we also need to provide the resources for all the babies who are not carried by a woman. For example, find adoptive parents for these babies, or if there aren’t enough, set up orphanages for them. Then, when the baby turns eighteen as an adult,, we need to provide jobs for them, homes for them, etc. We need to also have room on this planet, and this planet only since we can’t seem to find life and habitability on other planets. Example, we can’t find life on Mars. Mars is inhabitable anyway because it’s a desert planet with a red atmosphere, right? So we need to find resources and ways to raise milions of babies who can’t be carried by a mother, and some of them will go back to their mothers, but millions of others won’t. The ones that will have mothers who can’t physically carry, and an electric womb would be a lot cheaper than paying a carrier, paying someone to carry the baby for you as a surrogate mother. Surrogacy contracts can go off the deep end, as one Florida surrogacy case actually did. I watched it, and the surrogate mother decided to take the baby back, even though it was her employer’s sperm that fertilized her own egg. It was nuts. Therefore, I think it best that if you want to have kids and not carry the child, then in the future of futures why not use an electric womb to carry your child? This would be a huge game changer, one historian writes, and would negate the need for killing the baby altogether in an abortion. Problem solved.

What we do have to realize, however, is this. Please understand that the earth only has so much in the way of resources, food, soil, and other things to make food grow. If we have too many people vying for these resources, we will have a famine. And what does famine do to children? Look no further than Yemen, where kids are starving to death, literally, malnutrition is back and back with a vengeance. Look no further than places like Lebanon. Not only does the world have to cope with a corona virus epidemic, or pandemic, the world has to cope with famine. Famine in Yemen and other spots in the world stems from a few things: war on top, then the ratio of resources to children. There are more people in Yemen than there is food. So how do we do something about it?

I would hate to justify abortion, only I would justify contraceptives, for they save lives. Contraceptives for women and men alike would save resources and lives. For young girls who are forcibly married, contraceptives would prevent her from going off the deep end with twelve kids. Fourteen is too young to marry, end of story. If anything, too much bureaucracy is a bad thing because we need to raise the marriage age for all people in places like Yemen. Example, nine is definitely too young to marry, so the marriage age for all young women and men alike should be eighteen. No questions asked. It should be eighteen, and when a person turns eighteen, they should be afforded protections if the man is abusive. Women are not shopping items, okay? Teenagers should not be forced to get married and pregnant a billion times over because it robs others of resources on the planet, and it’s all around bad for the girl and guy as well.

The next thing we need to do is something I’m sure is unpopular with a lot of people. For the places where there is famine frequently, where children are starving to death, perhaps we should limit the number of children each woman bears. We should limit the number of children each man can create, period, because we have none the more resources than we have people. The earth can only take so much, and it will grow tired of us if we don’t take care of it. If we do take care of it, things will be better for the children and parents alike. Raising the marriage age, limiting childbearing and perhaps outlawing certain forms of coercion into marriage because not every woman wants to get married and not every guy should have to either. Lesbians may want to leave the country where they are and marry elsewhere, and to female partners that is. Women are not baby factories, and should not be treated as such. For you who oppose contraception, think of the lives you would save. Do you want kids growing thinner and thinner every day because boys are prioritized over girls or because there just isn’t enough food to go around? Gender based neglect happens a lot in places where sons are priority and not daughters. We need to create a world for ourselves that brings equality, no gender based neglect or violence. We need to do this for the planet, and for ourselves. As for everybody else, we’ve got to be better at realizing that there’s only so much we can do, and you won’t have much room on planet earth if you keep bearing children and demanding the planet feed them all the time. So what is the solution? If we say find another planet, Mars is not an option, at least in my opinion. But the next best thing is light years away, so we need to make the best of what we have here on Earth, and if we find another third planet from a sun, we need to see what the sentients there would do in cases where Earth is failing. This planet needs our help, and if we have to lose some to win some, that’s what we need to do. In the current circumstances, we can’t and don’t have the electric womb thing I propose. We have no choices other than to make a woman carry a child, and some women can’t physically do that. In another way, I think we have some hope of getting better. Thee planet will yield better food if we do the right thing, and there could be hope that food won’t be so scarce. With the Corona virus pandemic in the world, we have to learn a very solid lesson: don’t overreach with resources on the planet, and another thing. Clean up the meat market in China and don’t sell bat meat at all. Don’t call it mystery meat, but wet markets are a no no. If you want to make a wet market, expect a pandemic, and learn that quick. Swine flu was another problem, but this corona virus thing is the biggest pandemic I’ve ever witnessed. We might have room for more kids on this planet, but we need to be extra careful now. This means that we need to take great care of what we have and what we need. the bottom line is that the planet needs us, and we need the planet, and the planet must be taken care of in order for all of us to thrive. We can advance technology all we want, but we need to make sure we have ethical reasoning for all technology, not let it get the best of us. Ectogenesis is one such technology we can and should try, but remember the consequences of every step we take when we advance things. My science teacher, Patricia Hutniek, engaged the class in the St. Teresa School in arguments about cloning and other forms of scientific advancement. It was her encouragement of these debates that brought me to a point where I could map out the ethical reasons why or why not use a certain technology. I think ectogenesis is a great idea, but is it ethical? In a sense, I think it would be ethical if we were able to get the baby out of a woman’s body and safely into an external electric womb like I proposed, but pro lifers need to understand that you should be bringing up all the kids in these electric wombs. Find adoptive parents for the kids, make sure they get food, water, and clean air. We desperately need this technology to negate all pro life and pro abortion debates altogether, but we also need other planets to settle on and make more families on. Earth may throw us off like it never mattered, so we need to find other places light years from here and more. Astronomers can do just that, and NASA also does its diligent work looking at asteroids but we need to do so much more.

I want to apologize for my prior post on ectogenesis, but I was laying the groundwork for what was to come. I should have titled my last post better. I hope you will humbly accept my apology.

Thank you for reading this blog, and have a great day.

Beth

Ectogenesis: The Miracle of Life Continues???

Dear readers,

I noticed that some of you on Facebook don’t like abortion. The big thing that would get me is how many of you say that “abortion is fucking murder” and “Abortion people are freaks.” I’ve got issues with people like me who believe in science and scientific reasoning for abortion as freaks. First, what happens when a baby is made?

you might be wondering what happens when a baby is made. I’ll not go into the whole egg and sperm saying how do you do, after all we’ve gone there in science class. However, think about the cost and financial figures the baby will demand. I’m not saying you have to buy them things because you want to, the baby will demand a lot of attention. First, how many diapers do you go through with your average baby? Secondly, when the baby grows a bit older, how many pieces of clothing or garments do you go through for baby? Child will need lots of extra things, including clothes, food, diapers, and if the kid is a girl, you’ll need to show her how to use feminine hygiene products. That’s nothing really compared to the whole changing your baby on a changing table though. And for some women, it’s not just the financial figures a baby costs that brings them to abort a baby.

Imagine for a moment that you had been raped by a not so nice older relative as a minor. If the baby was born male, that older relative would find a way to get custody of the baby while in some way being in jail for raping you. Imagine you’re a woman who doesn’t want to look into the face of her rapist, and is psychologically traumatized by the sight of the baby. You’d need extra therapy for keeping the child so you don’t abuse him. However, abortion would save not only the cost of care for the baby, but the cost of a trial, custody dispute, and oh so many other things.

You might be wondering why the hell I’m writing this. Colorado has repeatedly tried abortion bans on the ballot, and thankfully, none have prevailed. Abortion bans don’t work, and the twenty weeks abortion bans don’t scientifically work because certain things a fetus could have disease wise don’t show up until twenty weeks or more have passed. Sometimes a baby gets so sick it can’t live, period. So what do yu do? you have to abort. That’s the simple fix and it doesn’t threaten the life of the woman. If a mother’s life and health are at stake, also her psychological health, a baby should never be forcibly or arbitrarily carried to term. Governments should never decide a woman or baby’s fate, only a woman, her husband, and then her doctor, all in accordance with the woman’s faith. I would never abort my own kids, that is unless they aren’t the kids of my husband. Trenton and i want to be able to have a child, but the cost is overtly prohibitive. We use contraception to make sure pregnancy doesn’t happen for now. We need safer and better housing that will allow kids, period. If someone were to have raped me while I was trying to conceive with Trenton, I’d have to take an emergency contraception pill, and do all the contraceptive precautions like not having sex for a while just to make sure the rapist’s baby doesn’t plant itself in and scare the crap out of me when it comes out, if it even does. There are plenty of loving couples, same sex and different sex, that would love to adopt kids, but think on it first before you bring a child into the world. Costs could range from $10,000 over eighteen years to $2,000,000 over eighteen years depending on socioeconomic circumstances, child’s special needs, and income requirements for housing. There you have it. If Republicans don’t want women to be equal to men, they’re asking for trouble. This includes the cruel cycle of not letting them have contraception, especially if they’re single. If i were single at all, contraception would still be an option because I don’t want to be pregnant with a stranger’s kid anyway. Disabled females stand a 95% chance of being raped and some to the point of pregnancy. Rape is a really dumb idea for men, so if you’re male and reading this, don’t touch girls you’re not supposed to in a way they don’t want you to, even your wife. As a woman who is blind, my body is seen as less valued and more prone for nonconsensual sex. This happens a lot to my girlfriends, and that’s something we need to address. We need to teach boys not to rape, period. We need to have stricter punishments in place for rapists especially if they do disabled females under eighteen. At the same time, sex ed should include consent which I mention in a prior post.

One thing is for certain in this day and age. We don’t need abortion bans, and churches and politicians should not be getting into the decisions of women and their doctors. Thank you for reading.

Beth