Menu
Your Cart

Brainscan #21 Irreconcilable Differences

Brainscan #21 Irreconcilable Differences
Brainscan #21 Irreconcilable Differences

I haven't made an issue Brainscan in four years and I hope that this zine helps to explain why. Brainscan 21 explores my recognition of being in an emotionally abusive relationship, the attempts on both parts to right wrongs, the failure to do so, and gathering the strength to take the next step.

What if your private life in your relationship is vastly different than what other people see? When do you know you are in an emotionally abusive relationship? How to you gain the strength to get out of it? What do you do when you know you can't handle the burden alone? What do you do when you feel so alone and terrified of the consequences of leaving, when if it means losing friends, a home, a job and a way life that you love?

These are just some of the ideas explored in this zine through a three year personal narrative that also challenges you to examine your relationships with power, to identify how you express the power you have, and also how you relate to the power that of others possess. But most of all this, zine is about revelation, rebirth, and growth.

44 pages, half sized

Reviews:

Maximum Rock n Roll

"I want to start by saying what I would normally save for the last sentence of a review: I highly recommend this zine. That needs to be stated first because the description of this zine might lead readers to pass it off as one of those way-too-personal post-riot-grrl feminist zines calling some boy out for being a dickhead.

I don't know if this is a universal phenomenon, but in Portland, where this zine happens to be from, there was a short-lived but intensely polarized heyday for that sort of zine in the mid-90's. There was even a new term coined, where the allegedly dickheaded boy (or sometimes a girl) is said to have been "zined." In one respect, the subject of this zine, the thinly disguised "J," can be said to have been zined.

But the true subject of Brainscan #21 is the writer herself, Alex, who wrote this as a way of working through the pain of ending a six-year-long relationship. Alex paints a plain yet detailed portrait of a relationship where one person uses his ideology and his status in the scene as divices for control and psychological abuse. Alex does not use the word abuse lightly. As a matter of fact the word never even appeared in this zine's original incarnation. It was only after readers pointed out to her that what she experienced was in fact a form of abuse that she came to recognize it as such.

I get very uncomfortable reading about suffering of any kind and was afraid that at some point this zine too intense. But Alex manages to describe the intricacies of this dysfunctional relationship without being emotionally overwhelming, and creates a narrative that kept me engaged to the very end.

I recommend this to anyone who cares about power dynamics in the scene and in relationships, anyone who may be in an abusive relationship (physical or psychological) or knows someone who is, and most importantly in my eyes, anyone who may be an abuser or the controller in a relationship. That adds up to just about everyone, probably." (PC)



Punk Planet Review:
Brainscan #21
This issue of Brainscan details zinester Alex Wrekk's experiences in a mentally abusive, oppressive relationship--and her subsequent realization of such abuse and struggle, culminating in a decision to leave. She describes her own thoughts and feelings and the actions of her partner in such a compelling way that it is more about self-discovery than victimization. Her words are powerful and helpful for those experiencing the same kind of torment but who rationalize away the "mind fucks" their partners inflict on them. Through her writing, she calls attention to her past situation to help others and tries to understand why she let herself be controlled in an abusive manner for so long. It is worth reading and largely aims at pointing out such controlling behavior in all people, not just between romantic heterosexual couples. (AJA)


Zine World Review:

Brainscan #21: "irreconcilable differences" Alex made this zine to explain to everyone why her public relationship came to an end but also to share her experiences, in the hopes that others who might be in a similar situation could relate to it and see they are not alone.
Throughout the zine, Alex strives to be diplomatic, never bad-mouthing (although she does recount specific incidents of her ex's behavior) as she describes the controlling, emotionally abusive relationship. The zine is about her: how she lost her sense of self, how the relationship, and his actions, changed her, and how she regained her strength.

"What do you do when your private image of your partner
doesn't fit with their public image, or even clashes with it?"

"There comes a point when your mental well-being is more important than making someone else happy."

Brainscan #21 is one of the most candid and empowering zines I have ever read. We can all learn from this zine, about the power dynamics in our relationships, about respect, manipulation, and control.


Feminist Review:
In her riveting zine, Alex Wrekk writes in raw and powerful detail about her marriage to a man named J who dominates the relationship and systematically chips away at her self-esteem until she feels like a big zero, like she's the one who is crazy. (Projection and gaslighting are tactics of choice used by the cowardly abusers, but victims don’t usually "get it" until they are in way over their head.)

I believe no one can fully understand what a Herculean task escaping and recovering from abuse is unless they have traversed a twisted relationship personally. And emotional abuse is particularly insidious because of its lack of visibility. There are no black eyes and no scars to tell the tale. The scars are psychic and horrifically alienating—unless the victim talks to a good therapist and reads about this type of abuse pattern.

When I received this zine to review, I figured I’d read a few pages before going to sleep, but I couldn’t stop until I finished the whole story. This woman went above and beyond the call of duty and obligation to her marriage vows in trying to work things out, but, as with these cases, emotional abusers don’t really change. She finally gives up and sets out to save herself, and I wanted to shout “Yay!”

It’s a great story, very well paced, and Alex gets extra special reader points from me because of her guts in putting it out there. I also believe that as a writer, Alex benefits from her experience. In the process of excavating herself from the ruins, she wins the prize of a deeper, wiser soul.

Write a review

Please login or register to review
  • Stock: 12
  • Weight: 3.00oz
  • Dimensions: 8.50in x 5.50in x 0.20in
$3.00
2 or more $1.80

NEW IN THE CATALOG

We have two ways for you to purchase gift certificates for use on the Portland Button Works Website!   1) Go to this page on our website if..
$10.00
We have two ways for you to purchase gift certificates for use on the Portland Button Works Website!   1) Go to this page on our website if..
$10.00
We have two ways for you to purchase gift certificates for use on the Portland Button Works Website!   1) Go to this page on our website if..
$10.00
From the publisher: You've never seen tarot cards quite like these. Imagine the celebrated "Rider Deck" infused with the horrors of..
$16.99
A beautiful tarot card deck with guidebook boxed set by Rachel True, best known as the costar of the cult classic movie The Craft Rachel True, an..
$30.00
Explore Game of Thrones with this beautifully rendered and wholly original tarot card deck Includes 78 gorgeously illustrated cards and hardcove..
$24.95
From Silver Sprocket Marie and Worrywart is a collection of comics about anxiety. Follow the adventures of Marie and her annoying constant com..
$5.00
From Contagion Press: The Otherworlds Review is a bricolage of dispatches from the end times, spiritual techniques, and ways of seeing, assembl..
$9.00
An anti-anxiety pocketbook that tells you that you’ll be okay at least eight times. It’s filled with coloring pages, simple thought exe..
$5.00
from Antiquated Future A zine in tribute to a maligned beauty of pop culture's past: the compact cassette tape. Twenty writers, mu..
$5.00
A Practical Guide For Surviving The Collapse Of EMPIRE With Others 54 pages, 4in x 6in, perfect bound, matte cover Gods&Radicals Press is..
$6.00
Inspired by Octavia Butler's explorations of our human relationship to change, Emergent Strategy is radical self-help, society-help, and planet-he..
$16.00
Brainscan Zine Pre-existing Conditions & Irreconcilable Differences 5 zine pack Brainscan Zine Pre-existing Conditions & Irreconcilable Differences 5 zine pack
New -20 %
It's 5 zines for $10! Brainscan #21 Brainscan #25 Brainscan #26 Brainscan #27 I Never Thought The Story Of My Life Would Be a Legal ..
$8.00 $10.00
Explore the old witchcraft, magical traditions, and folklore nurtured amidst the ancient lands of South West England. Gemma Gary presents Devonshire&#..
$15.99
Created by a present-day initiate of the Old Craft, this modern grimoire shares thirteen craft rites for solo practitioners and groups. The Old One em..
$16.99
Two books in one, this pocket-sized guide features an intriguing "double-fronted" format. The first side provides medicinal herbal informati..
$16.99
This fully annotated transcript from one of the great unsung heroes of witchcraft shares a wonderful collection of hands-on practices for the traditio..
$19.99
Pride Tarot is a collaborative 78-card tarot deck inspired by Pridefest and the achievements of the LGBTQ+ movement. U.S. Games Systems created this d..
$22.95
When the world around you turns dark, tap into the light. If you're having a hard time finding that light, facing trauma and division, or want to ..
$22.99
Pharmako/Poeia: Plant Powers, Poisons, and Herbcraft
New Out Of Stock
Pharmako/Poeia: Plant Powers, Poisons, and Herbcraft includes a new introduction by the author and as in previous editions focuses on familiar psychoa..
$19.95
Pharmako/Dynamis: Stimulating Plants, Potions, and Herbcraft: Excitantia and Empathogenica Pharmako/Dynamis: Stimulating Plants, Potions, and Herbcraft: Excitantia and Empathogenica
New Out Of Stock
This is the second volume of North Atlantic Books' updated paperback edition of Dale Pendell's Pharmako trilogy, an encyclopedic study of the ..
$19.95
Slingshot Organizers! You know them, you love them! plan you year, and take in the resources and other info that is packed into this annual staple! ..
$16.00
Slingshot Organizers! You know them, you love them! plan you year, and take in the resources and other info that is packed into this annual staple! ..
$8.00
A wise, witchy, and welcoming guide to living life magically Mya Spalter has spent years among candles, herbs, cats, and spells as an employee at..
$26.00
As an omen bringer, messenger, and scavenger, the crow has no master. It brings you the answers you need, although not always what you wanted. This ca..
$26.95
Five Principles of Green witchcraft Five Principles of Green witchcraft
New Hot
Five Princilpes of Green Witchcraft by Asa West is a tiny book packed with thoughtful principles to apply to your witchcraft practice From Gods and..
$6.00
Part guided journaling practice, part interactive magical grimoire, The Magical Writing Grimoire shows you how to incorporate writing as a magical too..
$21.99
I picked this up as a curio because I thought it would make an interesting gift for the architects in my live. It's a small hard bound book with c..
$39.95
"Ye are twenty-five cards. Become twenty-five devils Enter into the body, into the blood, into the soul ." So begins a nineteenth century It..
$5.99
Before its modern incarnation of predictive horoscopy, Astrology was in centuries past integrated with science, magic, mysticism and philosophy. In th..
$35.00
The Herbcrafter's Tarot celebrates the handicrafts, tools, and time-honored folk skills related to herbs, trees, flowers and other plants that sh..
$23.95
A Practical Guide for Witches: Spells, Rituals, and Magic for an Enchanted Life A Practical Guide for Witches: Spells, Rituals, and Magic for an Enchanted Life
New Hot
This is my new go-to guide for new witches. It is a witchcraft based in nature and elements and untangles religion from witchcraft as a practice but s..
$14.99
NOTICE!
Current turn around for custom orders under 1,000: 2-5 business days from receiving properly formatted artwork. Please keep in mind that we are not in in the shop on Wednesdays and Thursdays.