A Word About Trigger Warnings   Leave a comment


Trigger Warnings: Pornography, Rape

I really like the concept of trigger warnings, but I’m betting I’ll need some help with execution. For my readers who might not have heard of trigger warnings before, a trigger is a topic that causes a person distress. So a trigger warning serves to notify readers in advance that a topic will be discussed. Readers who have that trigger can then decide whether or not to read the post and prepare themselves to confront that trigger.

So, for example, discussions about pornography or particular types of porn are a minor trigger for me personally. To make a fairly long and complicated story short, pornography nearly ended my relationship before it begun, I have avoided all forms of pornography since, and the mere thought of it (which is difficult not to do graphically) makes me sick to my stomach. My discomfort quickly passes, though, which is why I call it a minor trigger.

Or, for another example, a rape victim with PTSD could possibly have a panic attack if a blog casually mentions rape. The trigger warning at the beginning of the post allows people with triggers to decide for themselves whether or not they want to confront their trigger prepared or avoid it.

I consider trigger warnings to be online hospitality in the sense of making a blog a safe place for all different kinds of people. I can think of several possible triggers on my own (this post is actually a result of my including a trigger warning in a soon to be released post), but I doubt I’ll catch all the possible triggers I should catch. The way pornography is a trigger for me is probably fairly unusual, so I certainly don’t want to not post a trigger warning just because I haven’t thought of a subject as a potential trigger yet. I would like to encourage anyone who has a trigger to either comment on this post or email me if they want trigger warnings for that trigger. And if I write a post and fail to provide a trigger warning, please let me know so I can correct the mistake.

Thanks for your help.

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Posted 07/01/2012 by reluctantliberal in Blog Business

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