Me, basically pretend-blogging. Actually wine-drinking.

Welcome! Be sure to click below for previous posts. You’re sure to find something that suits ya. XOXO

But first, enjoy this bit of ironic truth:

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Domestic Violence Awareness Month 2019, Part 1: Joe on Netflix’s YOU is not Romantic Just Cause He’s Hot AF.

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In celebration of the super-creepy, physically and emotionally violent show YOU’s upcoming second season, and in honor of Domestic Violence Awareness month, and given how many women professed their love for or excused the behavior of psycho-stalker/murderer Joe during its first season, this kinda feels like what you might call a teachable moment.

What lessons can Joe teach us? Well, it all starts with us mistaking what’s on the outside with what’s on the inside.

Now, let me just say that I understand lusting after a hot guy, truly I do. (Confession time: I may or may not have watched The Stepfather** a coupla times just to watch a certain actor. But I never watched “Gossip Girl.” Not sure why. There. Judge away.)

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**But who could blame me? I mean…

(My friend Kelley says I have a talent for pausing the TV on exactly the right spot for capturing images of hot guys. She might be on to something.)

What else can we learn from Joe?

A guy who says he wants to take care of you because he thinks you can’t take care of yourself isn’t just expressing concern.

A guy who disparages your friends (even if your friends are super-dramatic and seem to drain your energy) and tries to separate you from them isn’t doing that because he just wants to help.

A guy who makes choices for you isn’t doing it because he wants what is best for you.

A guy who ignores your rejection and persists in pursuing you isn’t doing it because he is so romantic.

He is taking away parts of your identity, little by little, piece by piece, action by action, word by word. He is isolating you so that you will belong only to him and have no one to turn to.

He is expressing ownership of another human being: YOU.

Look and listen more:

Joe Goldberg isn’t romantic.

He isn’t loving.

He isn’t caring and kind and thoughtful.

Joe Goldberg isn’t in love with Beck.

Here is the biggest truth of all. He doesn’t really care about Beck.

Joe Goldberg believes that Beck belongs to him. He KNOWS it. And because he KNOWS it, he knows what’s best for her. Call him a psychopath or a sociopath or just call him a creeper. But know this: just like you or I know that the lamp in the living room belongs to us, Joe knows Beck is his possession. (It’s right there in the words: possession/possessiveness.)

Yes, Joe is charming and nice and thoughtful! Yes, he smiles like he knows something you just have to know, too! Yes, he seems to know Beck better than she knows herself! And when he doesn’t want her to see her friends or her therapist (who, admittedly is also a creeper) or breaks into her phone and iCloud because he wants to know where she is & what she’s doing & what she’s thinking all the time, it means he just cares about her! Mistaking possessiveness for caring and thinking, “But he loves me!” is very common, after the abuse begins and just before you are murdered.

  And, yes, @Pennbadgley is Hot. That’s the f***ing point of the f****ing show. There is a reason they didn’t cast some guy who looks like the troll that lives under the bridge.

Being good-looking does not reflect who you are. Niceness isn’t the same thing as kindness. Jealousy isn’t the same thing as love. Drama isn’t passion. Obsessive behaviors don’t prove commitment.

And charm is not a personality trait.

Charm is a choice.

Charm is an action.

Charm is something you DO, not something you are.

Lesson to learn here; The next time someone, no matter how good-looking, behaves in a charming way, don’t think to yourself, “He’s so charming!” rather, think, “Why is he trying to charm me?” The answer might be something totally innocent, like, he wants your attention or your phone number. But, if not, if the answer is something with darker intentions, you’ll be glad you asked the question.

The brilliant book and the fantastic TV show “YOU” are about the giant chasm between a NICE guy and a GOOD guy. Look and listen to the book or the show and let “YOU” teach you that.

Read what @Pennbadgley has to say on Twitter to the many women who send him messages about loving Joe. Sure, you’ll love Mr. Badgley even more, but don’t confuse him with Joe.

Check back for more talk about relationship myths that are actually red flags for abuse. Watch out for YOU on Netflix’s second season. And please read The Gift of Fear.

-VV