My apology TW // SA
This is very hard for me to spell out, but 4 years ago I touched someone without their consent. Let me be very clear, there are no excuses for this and nothing I say here is me trying to excuse my actions. I take full responsibility for what I’ve done and the following consequences of it.
I’m not writing this looking for forgiveness or sympathy. I write this because I feel like I owe you an explanation.
Something I need to address before I begin is that while the allegations I admitted to are true, the rest of them are not. Those allegations are very serious so while it might be in bad taste to say this I think it's important to make that clear from the beginning.
Even though I am not the victim this is still the deepest trauma I bear and leaving my own feelings out of this will be impossible. Bear in mind that at no point am I trying to portray myself as the victim in this.
I’d like to not go over the incident here since there are public documents about it that most of you have probably seen at this point. I’m not denying anything I said there or denying the severity of what I admitted to either. It’s something I will never forgive myself for and I’m not expecting any of you to do so either.
I’d like to talk about what I’ve been through, the steps I’ve taken to ensure it never happens again and so that I can prevent it from happening to others. Due to this coming out a lot of victims have to relive their trauma, my friends are confused, seemingly asking themselves if they ever truly knew me and people that were supporting me are immensely disappointed hearing these things about me.
This is inflicting a lot of pain on others and hopefully shedding light on the situation can make it easier for you to decide what to think.
Leading up to this incident, my life was heading towards its lowest point. I was dealing with a lot of mental health issues but instead of seeking out therapy I turned towards several self-destructive behaviors. I never had the intent of hurting others but several underlying issues together with me delving deeper and deeper with these behaviors led to me hurting someone else immensely and that’s my biggest regret in life. If you recognize yourself in this, please seek help, because no matter the end result it will never end well and I don’t want anyone else to deal with the pain that everyone involved in this did have to go through due to my actions.
Sadly it all had to come down to something this drastic for me to finally seek help. The legal process which took about a year is the most traumatic event of my life so far. I came to understand during it how much pain I inflicted on someone else and that there was no one else to blame but myself for it and that I would have to re-evaluate myself completely.
Afterwards I contacted a therapist for evaluation of mental health and moved back in with my parents. For over a year the only ones who knew about this were the ones involved in the legal process, my parents and my therapist. Before yesterday the people I had told about this I can still count on my two hands, and even to them it has been hard for me to share all the details out of fear of abandonment, something that I'm aware of is unfair to them.
In hindsight this is obvious but I learned through therapy that I had built up a poor understanding of boundaries so far in life. I don’t mean to downplay it as only “not respecting boundaries” because this is more severe than that. But boundaries and not understanding unspoken dynamics in certain situations have been the two biggest things I had to put a lot of work into. I’ll admit that previously I’ve probably had more situations where I unknowingly made women uncomfortable, but not anything as serious as this. I have been far from perfect in the past but I want people to know that my actions have never been with the intent of hurting others. Even if you don’t have any ill intent behind it you can still hurt others.
I’ve taken several steps to get better. I’ve read every single story that has been circulating over the last few years from women, mainly in esports, coming out with their experiences and then both reflected on how my past actions compared to those and talked to women in my close circle about some of them with the intent of improving myself. I’ve learned that in any social situation it’s better to ask one too many times to avoid misunderstandings and how to look for signs if other men show signs of similar behavior. I have reached out to the people that I thought I may have wronged while reflecting on my past actions and asked if their interactions with me in any way did make them feel uncomfortable and apologized to those who did.
Sun is the first one I told about this and she has also been the biggest help when it comes to helping me understand these things and also calling me out whenever I said something ignorant and explaining to me why that is so. I wouldn’t be where I am today without her. She’s been helping me when I’ve been at my worst and I have not been entirely fair to her at all times and even through all this she stuck with me believing that I could come out as a better person from it. I will never be able to thank her enough.
I should mention that I have not spoken to the victim since the incident. First of all, it was all said in court and I did express remorse for my actions there. Secondly the allegations made were very serious and caused me a lot of pain stressing over the possibility I’d be convicted for something I didn’t do which has been hard to digest even to this day.
Just because you haven’t seen someone take responsibility for their actions publicly doesn’t mean they haven’t done so at all. I worked very actively on this for years now, but did so in my private life since me and other people in my life like my family and doctors deemed that I wouldn't be able to handle the aftermath of me going public with it. Seeing people speak about me this way now, while it is justified I can’t help but to feel disheartened by it too. That being said, this is something that comes with absolutely zero tolerance for a lot of people, including myself, so I don’t blame you in the slightest however close we might be if you don’t want anything to do with me from now on.
The goal from the beginning was to one day be able to address this and I’ve been working on it ever since. Considering where I was in life at the start, at the point of being in a deep depression, having suicidal thoughts and having multiple diagnoses that weren’t discovered until afterwards this has taken a lot longer to work through than I initially thought.
I see people posting tweets I made recently standing up for women, and I get how that seems hypocritical of me while being convicted myself and look as if I have been trying to hide this, which isn’t entirely untrue but not for the reasons that most seem to assume. As many have been able to tell this year I’ve been up until now doing a lot better than the previous years with consistent streams and a better attitude towards life. This led me to ask my therapist and doctor for advice on if they thought I could handle going public with this. I was advised to wait a little longer ensuring that I was actually stable and that this wasn’t just a phase based on the fact that I tried to quit my antidepressants earlier this year which went terribly. How is this connected to my tweets? Well, all this time I’ve wanted to be someone who supports women. Deep down I knew that I would have to clear this up before I could express this support. I got impatient and didn’t want to go against my therapist's advice so instead I made a few tweets which didn’t address my own actions. Instead I expressed support to victims in similar situations and in hindsight I fully understand how bad this looks coming from someone that has inflicted the same type of damage to someone else. I truly regret posting those tweets at that time.
Regarding the Hearthstone Esports ban since I should probably mention it. I completely understand how this is their only possible course of action and I don’t blame them for it. I do wish they had given me some notice on this. My first knowledge about this ban was Tuesday evening and at the time I’m writing this it is Wednesday and I have to talk about this while being highly anxious and while being bombarded with threats and name calling on social media. I think it would be better for everyone involved if I had been given a bit more time to prepare for this.
But yes, of course I am devastated after just qualifying for both Last Call and Sesonals to be removed from these and also not being able to partake in the competitions I love the most anymore. My personal feelings aside, these are consequences for my own actions and I accept that. HSesports were not aware of this information until very recently so please don’t criticize them for the timing of this decision.
In the bigger picture my competitive ban is not even comparable to the pain I feel seeing the community I’ve been part of talk about me in this way. While I haven’t shared everything in my life I genuinely tried to do good for this community all this time and it has been my whole life the past 8 years.
To conclude this. I’m gonna step away from the scene for some time and evaluate things. This is both for me being able to process all of this and also to give the people who are hurting from this some time to heal without being reminded of it by my presence. I am not sure if I’ll be back since I know things can never go back to how they were now. I loved my job as a streamer and I don’t really have anything to fall back on but carrying on knowing how people see me now I don’t think I’d be able to bear that or have this community deal with those feelings towards me.
Please don’t direct your anger towards my friends/community, instead direct it towards me where it is justified. This is hard for everyone involved so please show a bit of compassion towards each other. If you are reading this and want to defend me, please don’t. Instead use that to listen to women speaking up about abuse. Doing so is harder than you could ever imagine. By defending me publicly you are actively making it less likely for women to come out with their stories.
I appreciate those around me who even though they can’t see past my actions but still have been looking out for my safety and also those who believe in me and second chances.
I’m really sorry it turned out this way, everyone.