How Bachelor in Paradise Reinforces That Verbal Abuse Isn't Okay

How Bachelor in Paradise Reinforces That Verbal Abuse Isn't Okay

You are more important than the person trying to bring you down.

I've written once about the Bachelor franchise and my opinions, but rarely have I ever praised them.

On this past week's Bachelor in Paradise, they show a couple's "most heartbreaking fight."

Derek and Taylor are Bachelor nation fans' favorite because of their quick love and also because they seem to be the only couple who isn't playing games with each other (Dean).

Taylor and Derek start a discussion about their relationship. Taylor tells Derek that he's not the man she would have pictured herself with, but she really likes him, however, there are things that he needs to work on, like any relationship. Well, Derek only hears the part where she says he's not the man she would have pictured herself with and responds with "Fuck you."

Taylor is triggered by this (like actually triggered, not the new millennial definition) and it causes a riff in their relationship. Later on, viewers find out that Taylor was verbally abused in her past relationships and that type of language is a trigger for her. This issue is later resolved with Derek apologizing for crossing her boundaries and Taylor apologizing for how she phrased things.

They teach an important lesson that not enough TV shows discuss. Verbal abuse and triggers aren't a laughing matter. Language like that shouldn't be used and people need to respect other's boundaries and past experiences.

My dear, brilliant friend, Grace Sallee, recently wrote about toxic relationships. She writes that "It’s okay to walk away from toxic people. It’s okay to let go of people. It’s hard, I get that. Once you have a close connection with someone, you deal with the good and the bad, but sometimes the bad begins to harm you."

If you are like Taylor and your past relationships has verbally abused you or things have just taken a wrong turn, I want you to know that you deserve more than that. You deserve the world and someone to make you feel safe. You deserve to have a Derek who apologizes and a relationship where you can talk about triggers and boundaries.

In today's society, all people want is to fit in and feel secure. You deserve that security.

I hope you have friends that can lift you up or you believe in a God that can lift you up so that you are able to lift yourself up and take control.

You are more important than the person trying to bring you down.

(So Taylor and Derek, thank you for reminding me of an important lesson about my self-worth, the importance of feeling safe, and the importance of speaking up.)

Cover Image Credit: Wordpress

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This Is How Your Same-Sex Marriage Affects Me As A Catholic Woman

I hear you over there, Bible Bob.

It won't.

Wait, what?

I promise you did read that right. Not what you were expecting me to say, right? Who another person decides to marry will never in any way affect my own marriage whatsoever. (Unless they try to marry the person that I want to, then we might have a few problems.)

As a kid, I was raised, baptized, and confirmed into an old school Irish Catholic church in the middle of a small, midwestern town. Not exactly a place that most people would consider to be very liberal or open-minded. Despite this I was taught to love and accept others as a child, to not cast judgment because the only person fit to judge was God. I learned this from my Grandpa, a man whose love of others was only rivaled by his love of sweets and spoiling his grandkids.

While I learned this at an early age, not everyone else in my hometown — or even within my own church — seemed to get the memo. When same-sex marriage was finally legalized country-wide, I cried tears of joy for some of my closest friends who happen to be members of the LGBTQ community. I was happy while others I knew were disgusted and even enraged.

"That's not what it says in the bible! Marriage is between a man and a woman!"

"God made Adam and Eve for a reason! Man shall not lie with another man as he would a woman!"

"Homosexuality is a sin! It's bad enough that they're all going to hell, now we're letting them marry?"

Alright, Bible Bob, we get it, you don't agree with same-sex relationships. Honestly, that's not the issue. One of our civil liberties as United States citizens is the freedom of religion. If you believe your religion doesn't support homosexuality that's OK. What isn't OK is thinking that your religious beliefs should dictate others lives. What isn't OK is using your religion or your beliefs to take away rights from those who chose to live their life differently than you.

Some members of my church are still convinced that their marriage now means less because people are free to marry whoever they want to. Honestly, I wish I was kidding. Tell me again, Brenda how exactly do Steve and Jason's marriage affect yours and Tom's?

It doesn't. Really, it doesn't affect you at all. Unless Tom suddenly starts having an affair with Steve their marriage has zero effect on you. You never know Brenda, you and Jason might become best friends by the end of the divorce. (And in that case, Brenda and Tom both need to go to church considering the bible also teaches against adultery and divorce.)

I'll say it one more time for the people in the back; same-sex marriage does not affect you even if you or your religion does not support it. If you don't agree with same sex marriage then do not marry someone of the same sex. Really, it's a simple concept.

It amazes me that I still actually have to discuss this with some people in 2017. And it amazes me that people use God as a reason to hinder the lives of others. As a proud young Catholic woman, I wholeheartedly support the LGBTQ community with my entire being. My God taught me to not hold hate so close to my heart. He told me not to judge and to accept others with open arms. My God taught me to love and I hope yours teaches you the same.

Disclaimer - This article in no way is meant to be an insult to the bible or religion or the LGBTQ community.

Cover Image Credit: Sushiesque / Flickr

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5 Tips On How to Shed your Freshman 15

Tips on how to stay healthy while in college.

Going into my freshman year of college, I had goals I wanted to uphold throughout the year. Besides making good grades and staying focused on taking every opportunity that came my way, I wanted healthy eating and regular fitness apart from my everyday routine.

I was determined!

My final year in high school, I was killing the healthy body, mind, and soul. I worked out before and after all of my dance practices, obtained a healthy diet, and I was becoming confident in my achievement for my perception of myself improved every day the more I worked it.

Couple weeks into college I started losing sight of my goals I set before I left for college. I started stress eating, and workouts became less frequent. Going into college I thought the freshman 15 was a myth, but boy was I wrong.

The good news is that I overcame this issue and so can you. Many college students face this issues every year and the following tips really helped me get back on track of shedding the freshman 15 and making sure that the sophomore 15 will never be an option.

1. Talk is cheap

Many students will acknowledge that they have gained a couple pounds. The truth is yes college is stressful, there are late nights, and on our schedule exercise is the one task many people don't have a problem crossing off and never get to. If you find yourself saying " maybe next week", or my diet starts Monday", talk is cheap and make a difference at the moment.

For me, I noticed that I lost sight of the goals I set at the beginning of the semester and I knew what it took to get back to my happy weight and my overall appearance of myself. My best advice is if you want to make a change vow to yourself that you are doing this for you and your overall happiness.

2. Make time for you

College can be very congested with study sessions, lab hours, or even greek events, but having a regular workout routine will help you maintain your positive streak of getting your grind on. For me, I knew that on my busier days, I would have to sacrifice the couple snoozes and get an early start of the day with a quick run or a visit to the rec. Whether it's a twenty-minute run or a two-hour workout killer sesh, every minute counts and will help you get back to that six pack you had in high school.

Helpful tips that helped me: Acknowledge you are getting too comfortable with your workout and change it up regularly by kicking it up a notch with weights or running for an extra five minutes.
Also, Alabama offers great recreational classes every day with multiple time frames to choose from at all recreational centers. These include Yoga, Cycling, and many other cardio classes instructed to make sure you are getting your best workout and help you reach your goals of wellness. Of the classes, Powertrip is my favorite and really helped me get my definition in my muscles back.

3. Walk it out

Even though Alabama has very convenient free transportation across campus, avoid taking the bus from class to class. going to dinner on the strip, or a trip back to the dorms from Lloyd? Lace up your Asics and get moving because every step counts. This is a great way to clear your mind and reach your apple watch goals.

Helpful tips that helped me: Even if I had an eight am, I created a playlist that made the walk very enjoyable and even made time to stop at Starbucks on my way to class. Walking with a friend will also make the time more enjoyable.

4. Fried Friday?

Many people get very excited for the one day a week with friend mac and cheese, fried chicken, and well basically anything deep fried. If you decide to participate in this food coma event, make the best decisions for your body.

Always consider replacing the fried chicken with grilled and treat yourself to one fried treat. If you're depriving yourself of these meal items, you are more likely to consume more than your body can take in fear of missing out.

Helpful tip that helped me: I had a goal in mind and fried chicken didn't quite fit in reaching it. Instead of never eating these meal items again, I would maybe have fried Fridays one a month or only acknowledge that I am not a fan of the item fried that week and only indulge in foods that I will enjoy. I am not a big fan of fried food for it does not agree with me, but if fried oreos were on the menu, I treated myself within moderation.

5. Treats

When eating healthy, it is important to never deprive yourself of things that bring you joy. College is one big stress ball and the food is always a great comfort. My best advice is to treat yourself and maybe find a healthy hack of your favorite treat so you can stay on track of shedding the freshman 15.

Helpful tip that helped me: I love going to Heritage House and when it comes to the baked oatmeal, I am weak! In this situation, consider overlooking your favorite spot's menu and see if they have any healthy alternatives. For example, Heritage House offers a gluten-free oatmeal bake that eliminated the unnecessary carbs and tates just as yummy as the origional.

Now as my first year at Alabama has come to a close, I leave with not only the grades I worked for, but for the body, I originally came to school with. I am very fortunate that I have achieved this goal and created an obtainable a diet that keeps me loving what I'm eating and making every trip to the gym a field day.

Now preparing for my sophomore year, I know what to expect and ready to take on another year even stronger and 15 pounds lighter!

Cover Image Credit: Julia Smith

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