Abuse is not a Game
I wrote what follows and shared it to G+ after reading Mandy Morbid’s acccount of her abusive relationship with Zak. I will likely revisit this at some point and write up more of my thoughts. I have a lot. When I post things to Google+ I always share them to my private circles. This feels like something to share publicly.
I will update any posts that previously mention Zak’s books–there are a lot–so people are aware of my thoughts now. This will take a bit of time as I dig through them all and link to this page.
Mandy shared a post about her relationship with Zak. What she describes is harrowing and terrible. It’s a brave post. She did a good thing.
I feel bad and stupid. I had seen all her posts on Twitter post breakup where she allude to a lot of the stuff she writes about on her Facebook post. I had assumed it was just your regular messy break up. But honestly that was just the easier assumption to make.
A lot of people I like and respect have tried to convince me to cut ties with Zak over the years. I could see why people disliked him, but I thought he was genuinely good and decent. He cultivated a community of people I liked around him. Everyone was smart and engaging. People produced amazing things collectively. He was fiercely defensive of the people around him. So I in turn would defend him and my friendship with him. It felt like I was being principled.
But sometimes you’re a fucking idiot. That’s just how it goes.
Zak blocked me here on G+ and elsewhere a month ago, to the day. Even then I still felt this camaraderie with him. We might not agree about how to behave online, or who is or isn’t a good person, but we still were part of this whole thing together. But that was stupid too. This scene is bigger than him.
My standing up for Zak likely helped let him get away with a lot of stuff and for that I’m sorry.
I’m 100% here for Mandy.
– Ramanan Sivaranjan, 12 Feb 2018
Be good to one another.