Goodbye, First Love...

By Andi Lopez

The year following your high school graduation will feel exactly like an indie coming-of-age cliché. You and everyone you know will be getting into university, starting full time jobs, traveling and basically trying to cope with this new found freedom. You’ve been in your first serious relationship for at least six months and it feels like the honeymoon phase is never going to end...

Then the rose coloured glasses come off and you feel like your world is falling apart. Your relationship ends and suddenly you have no idea who you are without your significant other.

My first relationship began during the time I was supposed to be discovering myself as a young adult in the “real world”. For a long time I had a very embellished and naive idea of my future. I wanted to skip everything and settle down without knowing what I even wanted. It took me a while to come to terms with it, but this was a major part of why the relationship had to end. Who was I outside of “us”? I was mostly clueless, but I knew one thing: the pressure was on to get my shit together.

Truth be told, I’m a big believer in constant growth. But even if you are constantly growing and improving, it makes it difficult to be secure in yourself if you don’t at least have a solid foundation. You don’t have to be perfect to be in a relationship, but I have learned that you do need to be wholeheartedly secure in your beliefs and standards before you can contribute to a relationship in a healthy manner.

Now, I’m not here to give advice on exactly how to get over your break-up because frankly, everybody deals with things differently and this isn’t Cosmo. But if it’s any consolation, there is no right or wrong way. Do what you need to do as long as you aren’t harming anyone.  

One of the most liberating moments you’ll have after a break-up is when you’re able to look back on it without negative feelings. Instead, you’ll see it as an opportunity to start fresh and really focus on yourself...and mean it. I’m not talking regrettable body mods or fad diets - dig deep and truly discover who you are at your core; your morals and values, your passions.

I started off by saying “yes” to trying new things. I said “yes” to whatever my friends invited me to and not only did this build a stronger foundation for my existing friendships, I’ve also met a lot of new people along the way. People who I never would have met had I been at home prioritising what I was comfortable with.

As someone who struggles with anxiety, it surprised me when I found myself diving into what seemed like social deep ends and gaining a kind of confidence I had not had in a long time, if ever.

Picture yourself as a character in The Sims - you’re a Sim with socialite traits and the diamond above your head is currently yellow. Making good, wholesome memories with your friends and loved ones will always be one hundred times more rewarding than keeping yourself busy in fear of being alone. In fact, after a few weeks of being out of your comfort zone, you may just appreciate the times you are alone more than ever.

About the Author:

My name’s Andi and I’m an aspiring writer from Brisbane. I’m currently dipping my toes in the creative industries, with my main passions being lifestyle and fashion.

Instagram: @andi_lopez

Listen Up, Here’s 4 Podcasts You Need In Your Life

By Daniela Verde

The drive home from work at peak hour is always a shitty, shitty time for everyone. Sitting in traffic can make one feel agitated or even asleep at the wheel. A way to keep your attention span without checking Instagram (tsk tsk) is by listening to podcasts.

There is a vast array of podcasts available out there ranging from different subject topics. Whether you’re into science, history, or a particular public figure, there’s a podcast out there for you. There is a new platform of listening to people talking other than radio. Following the footsteps of the evolving forms of entertainment like, TV channels and movies to Youtube. This allows the public to have their voice heard on their own terms, without the restrictions of traditional media for mass consumption. So, if you want to make a podcast dedicated to reading Shakespeare monologues for three hours each week then power to you. I am sure there is a group out there who would get down to that.

If you are new to podcasts and don’t know where to begin or if you’re in the market for a new podcast to listen to on your daily commute, below is a list you should check out...

Serial

Hosted by Sarah Koenig, Serial is an investigative journalism podcast based on true stories. The first season which covered the murder of American teenager, Hae Min Lee received a cult following in 2014. The first season is a classic ‘Whodunit’ story. But, it’s the intricate details of these stories and the people involved  that drive the intrigue of the series.

Listen on:

iPhone - Podcasts app

Android - RadioPublic or Stitcher app

 

Sword and Scale

Sword and Scale covers true crime stories accompanied with evidence and testimonies involved in the case. The stories presented in this podcast can be extremely graphic so proceed with caution. In particular, Episode Twenty which covers the case of Ronald William Brown, a Christian children’s entertainer. Brown received a sentence of twenty years for possession of child pornography, a horrific crime in itself. Further details of his involvement will leave you sick to the stomach. Listener discretion is advised with this episode. Sword and Scale also provides content warnings for particular episodes where necessary.

Listen on:

iPhone - Podcasts app

Android - Podcast Addict, Pocket Casts & BeyondPod apps

 

The Pineapple Project

Whether you believe money makes the world go round or not, one way or another we all have something to do with money. For struggling uni students, this is a reality that is all too real. The Pineapple Project is hosted by comedian, Claire Hooper which discusses our thought process with money and how we can be better. Hooper hosts from the perspective of the audience, she’s no money expert either. I personally recommend Episode Three: ‘The life-changing magic of a budget’. Sounds like a snooze, I know… but you won’t regret it.

Listen on:

iPhone - Podcasts app

Android - Player FM

 

The H3 Podcast

Hosted by h3h3 Productions, known as Ethan and Hila Klein. If you are familiar with their Youtube videos, majority of their content is reaction videos and sketch comedy. An apt description of their content is internet culture satire. The H3 Podcast is an extension of their Youtube content in which they discuss current issues and their problematic aspects. Alongside new guests each week. I would recommend watching a few of their Youtube videos first before listening to the podcast. A lot of the sense of humour is based on references from previous content from their videos. Frequent viewers would understand the goofs and gafs behind it all. In episode thirty-nine, rapper Post Malone makes an appearance on the podcast.

Listen on:

iPhone - Podcasts app

Android - Player FM

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About the Author:

Daniela is a contributing writer for Maidenhair Press. She writes on a variety of topics ranging from beauty and fashion to social commentary.

A dive into Schwimmer's take on sexual harrassment

CW: This column discusses sexual assault and sexual harassment.

In light of our interview with Dr. Bianca Fileborn, lecturer in Criminology at the University of New South Wales, we felt it was important to discuss the topic of sexual harassment. Since last year, issues regarding disrespect towards women have come to the foreground. Hundreds of women from all fields of work have come forward detailing their experience of sexual harassment. Sadly, it’s safe to assume that as women, we have all had our own experience with sexual harassment or at least acknowledged an instance where we have felt uncomfortable. However, acknowledging the feeling that you are uncomfortable may not be straight forward.

Despite some of Ross Geller’s problematic moments in Friends, (e.g that scene in particular where Ross practically forces Rachel to choose between her dream job in Paris and him… so romantic?) David Schwimmer has been an advocate for sexual assault prevention since the 90’s. Schwimmer collaborated with Israeli filmmaker and writer, Sigal Avin to produce That’s Harassment. It features six short films addressing multiple occasions, mainly in a working environment where sexual harassment can happen. In a Rolling Stone interview, Avin states that she wanted to capture the moment where the energy shifts for a woman and she knows something is happening.

As a person aspiring to work in the creative industries, “The Photographer” is a harrowing depiction that shows sexual harassment is not exclusively a two-person ordeal. At first, this segment depicts a male photographer and a female model at a photoshoot. As the shoot progresses, the model is forced to publicly masturbate as the film reveals there is a whole crew behind them watching this ordeal happen. This short film, along with others in this series opens the discussion to the complexities of working in the creative industries.

“The Coworker” entails an occurrence in a hospitality environment. It shows a male co-worker training a female co-worker before she begins her first shift at a bar. Despite the industry, a number of women who have worked in a regular part-time or full-time job have experienced this type of behaviour at some point.

Watching all the That’s Harassment short films, it’s evident it made me feel uncomfortable recognising the behaviour even though “nothing” happens.

As apart of the New York Times article on the short film collection, a panel of experts that work in combating harassment annotated the script for “The Coworker” looking closely at how harassment happens and tactics used by perpetrators (link to the full article can be accessed below). One behaviour that expert, Robert Eckstein, pointed out was a common technique by starting with “inappropriate but relatively benign comments”. Eckstein elaborates that these kinds of comments allows for the perpetrator to claim they were just joking. As well as, gauging to see what other comments they are able to get away with. In an article for Cosmopolitan, Emmy Rossum, actress in “The Politician” describes the subtlety of sexual harassment.

“It [sexual harassment] can be just bringing up a sexual topic where it’s not intended. I’ve had experiences where I’ve felt uncomfortable, where a man was telling me in the workplace about his sexual relationship with his wife or with his girlfriend. And in a way, you rationalize it in your head: Well, they couldn’t have been trying to make me uncomfortable because they’re clearly talking about their relationship with their partner. But men don’t introduce the idea of sex into the conversation if [they’re] not trying to see if there’s an opening there.”

Personally, I am guilty of letting comments like this slide on multiple occasions despite the fact they made me clearly uncomfortable. Rawski adds that, ‘letting it slide’ comes from the fear that many women have of being ostracised by the work group for rebutting against a comment. I recognise this fear within myself as I try to remain as neutral as possible in a workplace. Unfortunately, for some women, allowing this type of behaviour to continue is to try and maintain their job. Evidently, it is inexcusable to continue to allow this to happen in work environments and everyday life in general.

There is still a long way to go when it comes to affecting change and progressing to stand up for yourself and others against sexual harassment. Admitting is the first step. This current shift in society acknowledging that this happens everywhere is the first of many steps. For myself, these short films and looking at sexual harassment in the face validates the fact that particular passing comments to me were inappropriate, and a person’s demeanor towards me was inappropriate. For me, recognising these inappropriate behaviours that have previously happened to me, is the first step.

Side note: Despite these short films depicting male/female occurences of sexual harassment, it is important to recognise that sexual harassment can happen to anyone, from anyone. However, it is still vital to acknowledge that men sexually harassing women is an issue. Due to the unfolding of the Harvey Weinstein allegations, you can simply Google ‘sexual harassment’ and find many examples of men sexually harassing women.

If you have experienced sexual assault or sexual harassment and need help such as information and counselling, please contact 1800RESPECT at 1800 737 732 or visit their website at https://www.1800respect.org.au/.
 

Mentioned articles:

Rolling Stones, “Inside David Schwimmer's New Sexual Harassment PSAs” by Elisabeth Garber- Paul: https://rol.st/2HMYdMG

The New York Times, “David Schwimmer Made Six Short Films About Sexual Harassment. We Annotate One of Them” by Claire Cain Miller: https://nyti.ms/2Gg4NHT

Cosmopolitan, “Cynthia Nixon and Emmy Rossum Give Advice on Handling Sexual Harassment in Hollywood” by Peggy Truong: https://bit.ly/2Juuci3

 

About the Writer:

Blanca is our Editorial Manager at Maidenhair Press who helps with the behind-the-scenes of the magazine. She also sometimes dabbles in writing. She is currently a university student at QUT and in her spare time loves watching movies.

A little word from Blanca:

I know this is a rather serious writing piece to introduce myself to the magazine, this is also quite personal for me but hello! Since our interview with Dr. Fileborn, it was important for us to discuss this issue as it’s become prevalent due to recent events. Personally, this was also an important topic to discuss as it was a reflection on my own experiences and how I can move forward and improve on standing up for myself and others. I’m looking forward to expanding my writing and writing more pieces for the magazine in the future.