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Bouncing Baby Basilisk @RuffleJax
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Some people asked for a continuation of my #LessWrong abuse thread. Some people told me I was polluting Kathy's legacy and twisting her words. Some people said I made up my abuse, that I threw in Michael Vassar and Andrew Rettek to get more views.

So I guess I'm continuing.
Before I go on, I wanted to thank @davidgerard at @RationalWiki and the folks at r/Sneer Club for helping propagate Kathy's note. I also want to thank @bi_gendian for being an amazing co-spear carrier and friend.
I also want to include links to some of Kathy's works before I talk about my own abuse some more. Her note is what allowed me to come out publicly in a way that could be spread.
I only knew her through my domestic partner, to be exceedingly clear, and her vernacular is VERY DIFFERENT than mine. She, for example, believed that she was being targeted due to her facial structure and hormone levels. I do not support this.
Her work is extremely useful as an insider's view though -- and as a testament to how far abusers will go to discredit and destroy one of their own, if they try to bring the abuses to light.
An Exploration of Sexual Violence Reduction for Effective Altruism Potential…
A copy of "Shock and Effective Altruism" that was handed to me by one of her friends.…
A copy of "Abuse Reduction - Things With Incentives" that was handed to me by the same friend.…
Let me be very clear again: I do not agree with everything here. Kathy and I are very different people, and we have very different approaches, but we went through many of the similar things.
If you want to read my first thread, you can find it here:

This next part of the thread is not going to be about Kathy. While again, it was her note that allowed me to come forward, we are not the same people. I am not telling you about my personal abuse for Kathy's legacy. I am doing this for me.
Before we begin, some identifying information.

I helped Andrew Rettek pick out Sarah Constantin's engagement ring when we were all still dating. We settled on a rainbow titanium band. She got rid of it in favor of an oval opal. I believe I still have the old band.
Michael Vassar wore my tiara at T-Mode in 2013. We began dating shortly thereafter. We dated from April 2013 to September 2013, when he broke up with me for the woman he met at Burning Man.
Like I've said elsewhere, Michael and I dated for about four months. We saw each other maybe four times and talked very infrequently. I thought he might be interested in my copy of KULT, since he liked Mage: The Ascension.
Here's the thing about #LessWrong though, my dudes. They only accept hard data, numbers that they can filter through their brainmeats to prove how superior they are. Emotion and intuition are illogical.

So of course, there are no chat logs with Vassar.
It's fucking frustrating to me too, because the backlash is going to be "well, she's mentally ill, she wants attention, woman scorned, blah blah blah."
Michael Vassar told me plenty about his mother and his first wife. How he was wronged by women. How he just wanted a fun, happy relationship where he could be himself.

Being a fool and also almost 20 (to his 35), I gave it to him.
We went to the Rodin Museum in Philly and met up with a friend of his, Nancy Lebovitz. We also saw the Barnes Foundation in Philly. He was fun to talk about art with!

In fact, he was fun to talk about anything with, so long as you were ok with him forgetting it 5min later.
I even called him "transhumanist Byron" and wrote poetry about him. There are posts years back on my Tumblr about him -- let me show you.…
But you guys wanted to know about my abuse at his hands.

Well, for one thing, he told me he loved me because I was "young at heart", broke up with me a week after for the "Isis" at Burning Man, and then told his pals I was "a 5yo in a hot 20yo's body".
This was not the first instance. Bear with me, this takes a little explaining.

So part of emotional abuse is putting down your partner in public, right? Well, Michael loves Mage: the Ascension. Practically worships it.
He assigns everyone a mage tag. Everyone he likes that is. Everyone, but me, even while we were dating.

"You're a sleeper -- you don't really get it. Your world is too small."
Dumb without context, yes?

Go look into Mage: the Ascension. Go on. I'll wait.
If you don't know anything about MtA (and believe me, the people I was spending time with with him did), I'll give you the translation.

"You are pretty, but you have no agency of your own. You are a second-class citizen and cannot affect your environment. Bask in my glow."
Problem is, I am not super good at basking. So this resulted in the breakup, where he immediately chose to discredit me to anyone who would listen.

I thought I was friends enough with his friends to get them on my side. Stupid.
Michael also had this unnerving habit of, when we were sleeping in the same bed, touching me as I was falling asleep or waking up. Not asking, and never enough to trigger my flight/fight/freeze reflex (although in retrospect it might have been freeze).
But always touching. My legs, my vulva, my mouth. Once he put his dick in my mouth as I was waking up and pet my hair and talked soothingly to calm me down so I wouldn't panic.

What a nice assault, no?
The weird thing was, he would complain that no one ever engaged in just foreplay, or "playful sexual touching" as he called it. I said a couple of times I'd be willing to do so if he was into it.

But it was never when I was in a state to consent.
Michael did not believe I could affect my environment. He told people in public that I had no capability to affect my environment -- I was a Sleeper, no matter how much I protested. I was his plaything. A plaything he liked, but a a plaything.

Something to know about me: I was physically and emotionally abused as a child as well. Even consensual objectification dynamics freak me out. I did not consent to be Michael Vassar's toy -- but I was anyway.
I was 19 when we started dating. I was 20 when he broke up with me on my birthday, for a woman who claimed that he was John Galt incarnated from the high umbra to lead humanity to Ascension.

Tbh I'm not even bitter, it's just wild.
I should be clear, I'm not bitter now.

Michael had gotten his hooks into me. I thought I was the Caroline Lamb to his Lord Byron, I thought I could win him back, that if he saw how Awakened I was, he would want me. After all, he wanted me when I was a Sleeper, right?
Surprise. It wasn't me. Michael wanted to sleep with a hot 19-year-old, then decided to keep her on a string instead of being honest with her because more of that hot half-awake pussy woo yeah.

Also "five year old in a hot twenty year old's body". After the breakup. Jesus.
*Angela Lansbury voice*

But there was worse yet to come, poor thing🎶
Ok I was going to post more lyrics from Sweeney Tood, but it's not super helpful.

Now we're going to talk about Andrew Rettek. Buckle in your fucking seatbelts, we're gonna talk about the most gorgeous abuser on the planet.
Here's his Tumblr, if you're interested. Just looking at it made my heart thud. Even after three fucking years he still has that affect on me.
Dude was gorgeous. GORGEOUS. Dressed like a supermodel, had the sweetest laugh and was funny as hell. I vented to him after Michael broke up with me, and because I was going to date Sarah Constantin, his now-wife.
For the record, while I am furious with Sarah for being complicit in my abuse, this thread is not about her. I consider Sarah to also be a victim of the codependence generation machine.
It is also worth nothing that Michael abused her by deliberately following her from room to room when she said things he disagreed with and reciting phrases other people had used to abuse her until she broke down crying.
Anyway, so back to Rettek.

I'd met him before when I was dating Michael. He knew I was starving for Michael's affection -- I, in fact, vented to him about it after Michael broke up with me. Making fun of Michael was one of the main themes in our relationship.
At least, in the beginning.

Andrew Rettek, while having dropped out of two Ivy-league schools and being very embarrassed by it, is not stupid. It took me years to see it, but he set himself up as the heroic antithesis of Michael Fucking Vassar.
He was this shining golden god who swooped in and saved my poly ass from being secondary-relationship-less. He and Sarah both were there when I was fucking pissed at Michael.
Andrew told me he loved me a month and a half/two months into our year-and-change relationship. This should have been a warning bell, maybe? Not a klaxon, just a little uncomfortable ringing.
But being twenty (he was thirty) and angry and wanting to prove myself to Michael, I latched onto Andrew. And he was so latch-on-able, Christ almighty.
I think this is the first time that I have publicly admitted Andrew Fucking Rettek strongly shaped some of my preferences for male and male-adjacent people. Snappy dresser, strong arms, good laugh.

Motherfucker. It makes me hate him more.
Anyway, we were extremely compatible for the first couple of months of our relationship -- and then the honeymoon period dried up, and Depressed Andrew entered stage right.
See, I have depression too. And PTSD (partly because of this fucker) and anxiety. Sometimes I act like a jerk because of it, I will admit that.
Depressed Andrew hated Sarah and would call me at odd hours complaining about her and how repressed she was. Depressed Andrew would give me the silent treatment, interspersed with occasional sniping, for WEEKS.
And then all of a sudden, it was back to Andrew who would fuck me twice in one night and leave me wanting more and would take me to nice dinners and laugh at my stupid jokes.
Depressed Andrew was not super common at first, but as it drew towards my college graduation, he showed up more and more. I don't think we spoke at all in the three weeks between my appendix bursting (v inconvenient for him) and my graduation.
I kept forgiving him, because he kept reverting to normal Andrew with "oh, I was just depressed". I offered to help find him a therapist. I let him cry on my shoulder repeatedly and call me at 2am when he knew I had classes next morning.
I wanted him to love and trust me -- I am ashamed to say, I wanted him to love and trust me more than he did Sarah. It was always a competition with Sarah. I think that's why Sarah and I broke up, because of this competition he put us in -- with himself as mediator, naturally.
Triangulating communication is a classic abuser move, but I didn't pick up my copy of "Why Does He Do That" until after we broke up, sadly.
It was around this time that he started dating another woman, which was fine, we were poly -- but then of course there was the "having sex with her while I was asleep in his bed" which might not be abuse but was super fucking uncomfortable
She later broke up with him, and he offered her a job to keep her close -- which resulted in a whole lot of her getting fucked over, but that's not my story.
He triangulated with me and her again, which was infuriating, because we were close for a bit. Anyway.
My partner and I invited our partners and friends over for our big seder dinner, and this included Andrew and Sarah. Andrew didn't speak to me until I was quite drunk, then guilt-tripped me into having sex with him while everyone else was outside (and I was still drunk)
"You invited me over, and now I feel like nobody. I need an assurance that you love me."

Fucking rich coming from a guy who snuck out of the bed when we were both sleeping in it to go make out with housemates.
Double standards were huge with him. I had to go sleep in another bed in his room one night because it was too hot in his bed and he wouldn't speak to me at all the next morning, but him sneaking off in the middle of the night was fine.
This was all at the #LessWrong Highgarden brownstone in Brooklyn, btw.
Anyway, after Passover, I gave him an ultimatum -- he could either wise up and not make everything about him, or we could break up.

No, I am not proud of this.
He cried a bunch and said he would change and, to his credit, did not try to kiss me all weekend without asking first.

Then he didn't talk to me all summer. When he came back down, it was to spend some time with me after my grandpa's death and that was actually ok.
Then it got bad. See, he was now 32 and enamoured with another college girl, A.

Her story is hers to tell -- but he used her as a weapon against me.
Everything I said and did was compared to this 19-year-old sophomore who was a sweet cinnamon roll and who he would absolutely collar on the first date and she would bend to his every whim
Repeatedly. Ad nauseam. Everything was about how this girl was wonderful, with an "oh i love you too" tacked on at the end.

Yes, we were poly. But this wasn't NRE, this was targeted.
I went down on him and he told me how he was going to fix her problems with his dick. That sort of shit.
I wound up dating the girl as well, since she was cute, and the first words out of his mouth on Halloween (after, of course, consoling me when I came sobbing to him that I felt he was going to break up with me for her) were "when are you gonna give me a threesome?"
Can it get worse? YOU BET.

Two of the quotes I most remember from Andrew are "I deserve a hot nubile college girl every year until I turn 40" and "I can't wait to be a hot poly dad, then I can date people half my age and it won't be weird."
As you can probably tell, our relationship was hurtling towards destruction but it really didn't hit the breaking point until I what I will call the Thirty Six Hours Of Hell in November of 2014.
We were supposed to spend the weekend together and repair our relationship and have a nice time!
What actually ended up happening was that he complained that Peter Thiel wasn't giving him attention, complained that no one saw his potential, complained that he couldn't trust Sarah because she didn't drop out of her PhD program for him...
...complained that his partners had mental disorders, complained that I was "scary" and "wouldn't talk about [him]" and "wouldn't let [him] control [me] when [he] was depressed" because he had to control his whole environment, ignored me to watch Epic Rap Battles...
...had sex with me to show off to himself (it's weird, do you ever get the feeling someone is fucking you to prove something rather than to fuck you? that), talked about eating out his new college girlfriend while we were eating fondue...
...showed me nudes of new college girlfriend without her consent, and then to top it all off, when I tried to console him about his startup going under, he responded with "Shut the fuck up, nobody asked you" and continued complaining.
The next morning, I was packing up to take him to the train early, when I overheard him talking to my housemate.

"Why is she so upset? I spent about 80% of my time on her, what more does she want?"
Honestly, I think that's when I decided to break it off, but I wouldn't make it final for another two months.
...fuck this has been a lot.

I hope you all have enjoyed this edition of #LessWrong is terrible, and hopefully, this will fucking stick.

I'm sure I have more laying around somewhere.
But really, thank you from the bottom of my heart for listing. It is so, so validating.
I want to end on a more data-centric note: Kathy Forth put together a proposed sexual assault survey. Please read and consider it.

Again, thank you for listening.…
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