#FridayFive: Emily Lindin on Ending Slut and Building Confidence

 

Emily Lindin’s story beings in the sixth grade. She began developing a woman’s body before other classmates, and thus became a target for sexual objectification. The instigator of her slut shaming and tarnished reputation throughout her community came from a rumor spread by her boyfriend. This middle school scenario is so common for girls that intervention and protection has rarely been offered. Now many young women are ending their lives over being slut shamed before they have a chance to a live a life after high school. When Emily learned of yet another lost life to the emotional trauma of gang rape and victim blaming, she released her private diaries in a blog that has become an empowered community for young girls and women who are determined to end rape culture called THE UNSLUT PROJECT.

Emily’s determination to help others to build confidence in themselves as a way of alchemizing bullying is admirable, her courage to speak out about her own experience, exemplary. For any woman to be conditioned to believe that she deserves to be raped because she is enticing or dresses a certain way is the same volatile propellant that inspires Emily to speak out in peace, understanding, compassion and wisdom for all women who have been affected.

Emily has gained the attention of the media and has made appearances at TEDx Youth events, The Katie Couric Show, and now is prepared to show SLUT: A DOCUMENTARY FILM across the nation. Emily and I began our discussion with defining terms.

 

#FF: what is your definition of rape culture and slut shaming?
EL: Rape culture allows rape to not only take place often but to go unpunished. We all participate in it every time we laugh at a sexist joke or suggest that a woman is to blame for her own assault. Rape culture engenders slut shaming: implying that a woman should feel guilty or inferior for her real or imagined sexuality or sexual behavior.
#FF:  What do you believe is the root cause of a culture that does not stand behind victims of sex abuse?
EL: I don’t think it can be traced to one root cause – it’s wrapped up in deep cultural traditions of victim blaming. Part of that has to do with religious expectations, and a lot of it has to do with the teaching of “purity” as something that defines us – especially girls – as worthy of love and respect.

Shocking Statistics:

1 in 3 (33%) women are survivors of sexual violence or intimate partner violence. 

1 in 6 (17%) men are victims of sexual violence.

64% of transgender people have experienced sexual assault in their lifetime. 

Read more statistics here.


 

 
#FF:  Where have you seen the most growth in your work to raise awareness?
EL: I have heard from so many girls, some of them victims of sexual assault, who have read my diary and have connected to the other stories shared through The UnSlut Project – but those girls were, of course, already aware that sexual bullying was a problem. The most growth in terms of awareness of this issue has been with straight-identified men who never even considered that their words and actions – sometimes well-meaning but misguided – could have such a negative effect on the women in their lives. I love hearing from men whose minds have been opened through reading the experiences people have shared so bravely through this project.
 
 
#FF:  How have you healed from your own experience of slut shaming?
EL: Honestly, I healed slowly throughout high school and into college, and by the time I started The UnSlut Project I never thought much about the time in my life when I was the target of sexual bullying. In hindsight, I think I was able to overcome it because I focused on defining myself as the person I wanted to be – not a “slut” or anything else my classmates told me I was.
 
#FF:  What is the UnSlut Project?
EL: It’s a movement against sexual shaming, through personal story sharing. I started it by blogging my own middle school diary entries, word for word, and now it has grown into a supportive online community. So many people don’t realize they are complicit in creating a culture of shame for victims and women in general – and on the flip side of that, they don’t realize the power they have to make real change! The UnSlut Project encourages conversations and empathy – my hope is that soon, “slut” won’t even make sense as an insult.

How Can You Help?

1.) Join the UnSlut Project Community. 

2.) Educate your children. 

3.) Speak out against rape culture in your community.

For the LGBTQ Community:

1.) Speak out to end Corrective Rape.

2.) Support the safety of transgender citizens: Healthcare, well-being, acceptance.

3.)  Volunteer with RAINN: Rape and Incest National Network and give back.

Resources:

Suicide Prevention Lifeline

National Sexual Assault Hotline

GLBT Hotline 

 

Are you an emerging creative entrepreneur? Submit your story to #FridayFive.

theanjananetwork@gmail.com 

#FridayFive: Creative Empowerment Goddess Alysia Reiner

 

The life of Orange Is The New Black star Alysia Reiner

is an act of love and creativity. With mindful attention to her craft, the broadening of the depth of field of her characters appears to be second nature. As a humanitarian her efforts to raise awareness for the conservation of our planet’s resources are tireless. This week the award winning actress prepares for the Emmy Awards on August 25, standing in solidarity with the women of #OITNB, as the Netflix Original Series makes Emmy History.

With the emergence of her new role at the helm of Broad Street Pictures alongside Sarah Megan Thomas(“backwards”), she puts her multi-dimensional talents to intricate work as she carves an empowered place for women’s roles on the big screen.

In her own words, Alysia shares her #GoddessWisdom on this week’s #FridayFive:

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#FridayFive: Surreal Color Goddess Elizabeth Joy

Her name says it all: Joy. Elizabeth Joy brings exuberance and light to her metaphysical art and hair styling. In her work as a stylist, she harness the imagery of Jem and the Holograms, turning women into heavenly hosts of rock star proportions. In her art, Elizabeth identifies through her spiritual experiences of rebirth, renewal, and feminine empowerment. Located in Manheim PA, her work is here to expand the mind and bring sisterly love to the Philadelphia area.

#FF: How have you learned to create a safe place for yourself in your artistic expression?

EJ: I feel like society places a lot of importance on being practical, being a responsible grown-up, and working all the time just to make ends meet. It makes us feel safe to do what is expected of us. When you decide to live creatively, you blaze your own trail and it threatens the status quo. To me, living creatively is about being true to yourself regardless of what everyone else wants you to be. There isn’t a lot of security in it, but it makes you feel alive. Artistic expression never feels safe, but that’s what I love about it!

#FF: When were you the most connected to your artistic process?

EJ: A few months ago, I was involved in a very traumatic accident. I stopped going to work and going out with friends because I was just too heartbroken to function. Every day, I would sit in my room for hours painting. Art was one thing I could funnel positive energy into. It was a very ugly time in my life and creating images that were positive and beautiful made me feel more balanced. It made me realize the importance of staying creative. Now more than ever, I feel that art & creativity are what make life worth living. Why focus on things you can’t control when you can focus on creating something you love?

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#FridayFive: Photography Goddess Mallory Bertrand

Unassuming Portland native, Mallory Bertrand is a dark horse in fashion photography. You wont see her coming until you are destroyed a little inside from the vulnerability and beauty of her work. She deftly pulls unrelated elements of nature and ephemera together to tell a story in one shot. In her own words, Mallory shares how her gift as an artist has changed her perception.

#FF:  What does being an artist mean to you?

MB: Being an artist is everything about me. I have always been involved in art whether it be music, painting, drawing , or photography.  It is me being able to create something no one has seen and making them say wow with a plain canvas and turning it into a vibrant piece of magic.

Art is me.

#FF: How have you developed a relationship with the camera?

MB: I don’t know what I would do without my camera.

 #FF: When was your most fearful moment in your creative process?

MB: My most fearful moment was probably developing my ice queen shoot. I had the vision and was hoping all things would fall into place as we were working against nature.  The goal site was frozen waterfall.  We had to battle ice, snow, freezing water and on top of it all, freezing temps.  Luckily I had the most amazing model who was willing to do what it took to get the shot.

 

#FF: Where have you seen a difference in your work since you first began?

MB:  the biggest difference is the experience itself.  I have come so far in learning how to use the elements to get the best quality photo. I have always had my own style, but mastering it and learning new things over the years has helped me become a better photographer. 

 #FF: Who inspires you to be the person you are today?

MB: Everyone. I cant say there is just one person. The love amd encouragement I get from the many people I work with inspires me. It Makes me believe I can keep going and keep creating bigger and better.

Are you an emerging creative goddess? submit your story to #FridayFive

theanjananetwork@gmail.com 

#FridayFive: Fashion Goddess Brigid KO

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Brigid KO’s star is fast on the rise.

Her commanding presence and ethereal beauty is the jaw dropping fuel that is the essence of her work.  She has discovered art in environmentalism, repurposing rubber inner tubes from tire graveyards into haute couture.  Her art has caught the eye of the A-lister crowd – she has recently dressed one of Lady Gaga’s dancers in her epic creations.

It has been an exciting pleasure to see Brigid’s  Goddess Magick in action over the years, from the time she started with accessories and small collections combining soft femininity and the gritty world of industrial ingenuity.

#FF: Who/What is your muse right now?

BKO: Inspiration comes in phases and at the moment, I have been looking at sculptural artwork and metalwork throughout the ages. I’ve been doing research on and experimenting with metals: soldering, welding, making cold connections, etc. And I am about to do some research on forging and firing. I’m excited about incorporating metalwork to my pieces. I am always studying new techniques and I find endless inspiration in the trial and error that comes from that self education.

 

#FF: What does your creative process look like? 

BKO: I go through phases of learning and then refining. I’ve been so excited about teaching myself new techniques lately that it has changed my creative process a bit. Currently, the process involves a lot of research and experimentation. I’m so engaged with learning right now that I am not worried about the final product becoming something a little different than what I had first intended. 
I often start by choosing a group of images- textures and shapes – and focus on the one attribute that I would like to focus on. One piece may be more about silhouette and another about texture….Often, the process of making one piece results in many new ideas of things to create.

#FF: When did you realize fashion was your calling?

BKO: I embraced fashion after I had my first runway fashion show in Nashville, TN. Until then, I had been making pieces as special orders and was either never seeing the customer, or just meeting people in my studio. I had not pictured my work off of a dress form and out in the world. Until the show, still thought of my work more as sculpture.
Once I had the show, saw all of my work all at once, on these amazing, beautiful women, I embraced fashion. I realized how powerful it can be – how people can be both physically and psychologically transformed and empowered. I know fashion will always be part of my fashion-art work.
 

#FF: Where do you go to revive your spirit?

BKO: I need to get out into nature to revive my spirit. I appreciate beautiful outdoor spaces being easily accessible here. And, I enjoy finding new places to explore for hiking and swimming.

 

#FF: How do you see yourself evolving as an artist?

BKO: I am always learning and refining. I know that will never change and so my evolution will be endless.
 

Are you an emerging creative goddess? submit your story to #FridayFive

theanjananetwork@gmail.com 

#FridayFive: Indie Goddesses you Should Know feat. Megan Rox

Nashville  based Megan J. Rox is not just an indie music dream as the front woman of the melodically blessed band Scale Model, she is a goddess aware of her power to manifest, heal, and inspire. On this weeks #FridayFive we talk to Megan about her inspiration and visioning bigger moments to come.

What song(s) is on repeat?

MR: “Hmmm, I haven’t been listening to much new music lately. Some of my fav 2-3 yr old songs are anything from Beach House’s album Bloom, Caveman’s Old Friend.”

What has been your greatest moment as an artist so far?

MR: I’ve had some good ones – anytime someone tells me they love the music I’ve created ;) but the most recent in my memory is one of my favorite producers who agreed to mix our album, came to our show and was up front singing along to the lyrics!

**”I have a new greatest moment- a staff member at Minty Fresh Records in Chicago really likes our music and gave us a licensing contract and is personally managing us to help us get big nationally. He is my angel! I’m so grateful!”
 

Where do you derive creative inspiration?

MR: “Anywhere the mood strikes me. I keep myself open to possible future song lyrics just going about my day. When you ask for anything and keep yourself open to seeing/hearing what you’re looking for in anything…. Well, that’s where the universe provides. 
Same goes for vocal or keyboard melodies. It’s all divinely guided. Usually my desire to help people improve happiness in their lives (I’m a life coach, professor, and my other career goal is to be a motivational speaker) or to teach people how the universe works- to “wake up” is what inspires most of my lyrics. My song, Plato’s Cave compares Plato’s analogy of the cave to transitioning to the 4th dimension. I also have a vision board that helps inspire me.”

 What does your creative process look like?

MR: “It has to start with connecting to spirit because that’s where my lyrics & melodies come from. I frequently hear a melody pop in my mind and I always record it on my phone’s voice memo app. Or sometimes a melody or harmony from a song I hear on the radio will stick with me and I figure out how to take part of it and change it up to make my own melody. I’m very melody driven in my music and it’s what I look for in other music. I’ve become a bit of a snob when it comes to melodies. If a song doesn’t have a memorable melody, I’m probably not going to listen to it again.”

What is a message you want to share with other rock goddesses?

MR: “Get clear on what exactly it is you love about doing music and focus on that and ask for more of that and be grateful every time you get the opportunity to do it, whether it’s the songwriting part (I’m very grateful to have the connection & synergy to songwrite with my husband), or the performance or any other aspect. The more specific you are with your goals, the faster they’ll come to you. On my vision board is a picture of an auditorium from the stage of a band playing. However, there’s a caveat to that – if you’re not aligned with spirit in what you’re doing- if it’s not really in your nature (as Wayne Dyer likes to call it), than you won’t manifest it.

Ironically, I just wrote a FB post about this yesterday. I don’t know how to copy it here, but you can go to my FB pg, http://www.facebook.com/spiritrox.  Oh, and one of the most important things, You can’t worry about what other people think of you and your art. It’s when you show your true authentic self that people are attracted to you & your music/art.

‘As we let our light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same.’ – Marianne Williamson”

Are you an emerging creative goddess? submit your story to #FridayFive

theanjananetwork@gmail.com