Hey there fellow Murderinos and those who have no idea what that means. This series of blogs are going to be fun, I just know it!
Let’s first address what some of you may be thinking; what in the heck is a Murderino and why did you use such foul language in the title of this post?
My blossoming into a Murderino started when a woman very near and dear to my heart told me about a podcast starring two hilarious women who discuss their favorite murders every episode. Myself, being a bit of a true crime nut, had ears perked and I waited for her anxiously to tell me it was on Spotify as that is my prime spot for podcasts. I mean honestly, Spotify is the best $10 I spend a month. The podcast is called My Favorite Murder and stars Georgia Hardstark and Karen Kilgariff. From the first episode I was hooked! They told these nightmarish stories with a bit of comedy which made them easy to listen to, but also helped you connect with these women and understand what they thought was really important. The victims. The stories always came back to how awful this must have been for these “sweet baby angles,” as they called them, and highlighted all of the grave issues there are with our justice system, mental health awareness, and most importantly how quick we are to victim blame and say that this person could have done this, that or the other to avoid what happened. The podcast quickly blew up, and a community of Murderinos had been born and was growing exponentially. The two women started doing episodes in which they would read their listeners hometown murders they had emailed in and it was crazy to realize how many people in the world are affected by murder in their lives. They then started touring and telling stories specifically from the places they visited and would also even invite one lucky fan on stage to tell their own hometown murder. They connected with this family and never let us forget how grateful they were to have the opportunity to be successful with something they loved so much. It was hard not to like these two Murderino Queens. So when they announced they would be releasing a book, I couldn’t wait to get my hands on it.
The book is titled Stay Sexy and Don’t Get Murdered: The Definitive How-To Guide and acts as a memoir of sorts, chronicling their lives and how they came to where they are today. Each chapter is themed by a different catchy quote that was born on the podcast. Each of those phrases will also be the title of each post of this series where I will share my own thoughts of what this quote means to me and my own experience with it.
As you may have guessed the first quote is F*** Politeness.
This one spoke to me as a woman. Now let me make one thing clear. I think expressing emotion or feelings has become so skewed for both men and women. Often times people are scared to show true emotion for fear of backlash. But for me, as a woman, this is something we get trained to do. As children, it is engrained in us that we have to be “ladylike.” That term itself sends angry shivers down my spine. I honestly don’t even know what it really means. Shouldn’t we just say “be a decent human being” instead? A prime example of this was recently when Megan Rapinoe from the U.S. World Soccer Team used profanity when giving a speech after winning the World Cup. The internet blew up condemning her of using such foul language. I was just dumbfounded by it as one of my favorite athletes in the world, Tom Brady, literally made his slogan for the season “Let’s F***ing Go” and everyone loved it and praised his passion. It seemed so hypocritical. When someone is being a lousy example of a human being, often times we are told as women to just to roll with it and come out stronger on the other end. We are not encouraged to speak out and instead are left to internalize and analyze everything. I don’t know about others, but that seems like the easiest path to popping a pill every day for anxiety and/or depression. And wouldn’t you know it, that’s what I do. Every. Day.
Now flipping off politeness to me doesn’t mean you are just a rampant jerk to everyone to get what you want. It means that when you feel like you need to speak up, you do so without worrying about offending someone or putting someone in an uncomfortable scenario. You don’t have to sacrifice your lack of comfort stemming from someone else’s actions to protect their feelings. I am not a religious person, but I recently discovered an excerpt from the Serenity Prayer, and it says the same thing, but in a more church friendly manner. For those of you not familiar it goes as follows:
God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference.
My motto, as long as I handle myself with dignity and grace, I should be able to say whatever I need to for my own health and well-being. If that happens to offend someone, I cannot help that because what they decide to do with that information is up to them. This means showing respect to others when they are doing or saying something concerning to you, but also responding with respect if someone expresses how you are making them uncomfortable.
So how do I throw politeness to the side to protect myself? Lately I have been putting a lot of time and focus into finding my voice and using it. Recently I put this to use when talking to an ex of mine. We decided to have dinner to talk about the possibility of remaining friends as we were both still trying to cope with the breakup. As we sat in his kitchen, he started to cry and tell me about all of the crappy things he knew he had done towards the end of the relationship. At first my gut told me “he’s crying and vulnerable. You have to accept his apology and tell him it’s ok. It’s the nice thing to do if you want to stay friends” I couldn’t get the words out of my mouth because my brain was also screaming “he made you feel terrible and you are not ready to forgive him for that.” What then came out of my mouth was something I never thought I would have the strength to say to someone.
“What you did was awful. It hurt. You hurt me personally and I just don’t understand how you could do that to anyone you say ‘I love you’ to every morning. If you are expecting me to forgive you, I just don’t know if I can right now.” I didn’t accept the apology because I wasn’t ready to. Yeah it would have been the nice thing to do to help clear his conscious, but I couldn’t give up that much of myself to make him feel better. I didn’t curse him out for those things. I didn’t get up and storm out. I took care of Sarah and then waited for him to react. He understood and was respectful about it. It was the best outcome for that situation, and I felt liberated. If I would have done the “polite” thing and just told him everything was ok, I think I would have ended up despising him and myself for it. We remained civil with each other, but eventually our efforts to stay friends fizzled out, and you know what, that is completely ok.
So the moral of the story, well I am going to use the words of the fabulous Georgia and Karen from the F*** Politeness chapter.
Georgia: “Being rude is so much harder and scarier than being staunch.” Karen: “Some guy comes up to you on the street and starts asking you a bunch of personal questions, you can say to him ‘whoa, this is weird behavior. I don’t know you at all. You seem like a predator. Goodbye.’ If he gets mad and yells ‘Bitch!’ at you, that doesn’t mean you are a bitch. It means you were right.”