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Annabell Wandsworth

Forum becoming more negative?

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3 hours ago, Rya Nitely said:

I am a strong advocate for mental health awareness. There are many people in SL who suffer from depression and anxiety. I'm sure everyone knows someone. There are also many people who are unaware that they suffer from it. I'm not ashamed to admit I do. I suffer from social anxiety, and am often emotionally sensitive. I'm taking tablets. Nothing to be ashamed of.

   I'm sorry, but we can't be expected to always respond to everyone we come across as if they are mentally fragile and require only nice and skewed responses that cater to their special needs. As someone who suffers from mental health issues, the whole mental health awareness is just a wanna-do-good crusade that in no way has enough impact to change anything for the better, but only makes people think that they're suddenly experts on how to behave around nutters - which often results in people like me having to deal with people trying to pretend to be different from what they truly are, the moment they find out I could potentially go ballistic and suffer a panic attack. 

   This 'movement' is the reason why my parents immediately started reading up on how to deal with people with ADHD, because -that's- the 'most common' neurodevelopmental  mental disorder, and the one that people on social media spam do's and don't's lists on - never mind that my diagnose doesn't have 'hyper' and that treating me like someone with ADHD is the last thing one should do.

   And again - presuming that people have mental health issues and acting thereafter just isn't a good default guideline in social interaction with strangers.

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29 minutes ago, Rya Nitely said:

People need to change, and change comes through awareness. Awareness of the impact that your words can have on someone.

That's true, but I have a problem with it in the forum. We cannot tell if a poster is likely to be affected by our posts. We only have black on white words to go by, and they all look the same. We are a mix of people, some good, some not so good, but that's what we are as a whole. It would be great if everyone treated everyone else as though they might be sensitively affected by what we write, but it's not the reality of the world we live in. I wish it were, but it's not. Outside the forum, we just treat people normally. If they don't like us, they don't mix with us again. Because of that, I put the onus on those who are extra-sensitive to know about themselves and to choose to mix where they can be comfortable, and not on the people who are in a normal community/mix of people.

Heck, it would be great if everyone treated me by saying things like, "Yes Phil, you are so right" and such, instead of opposing my views too often. But that's not the general way of the world, so I don't expect it from this pretty average mix of people we have here, even though it should be clear to everyone that I am always right :D

Edited by Phil Deakins
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I'd be wondering how one reads "defensiveness" into a post simply stating reality - then again I know exactly how one does such a thing.

As someone with my own issues I'll leave it at the following: Not my Circus. Not my Monkeys.

Edited by Solar Legion
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15 minutes ago, Phil Deakins said:

We in this forum are a mix of people - of natures. Some tend to be more kind than others, some tend to be more negative than others, some are both at different times, some tend to be argumentative, some tend to be accusatory (is that a word?), some tend to helpful, etc. etc. In other words we are a pretty regular mix of humanity, each of us different to everyone else, and each of us displays the various aspects of our natures at different times.

People can change through awareness. I don't know what the situation is in America or other places but I would say it's pretty much like in Australia.

The workplace is a pretty regular mix of humanity, and my workplace has transformed from bitchy spiteful individuals to respectful caring people. They need to be polite and respectful (whether they want to or not). Respect is a strong policy, and mandatory - people follow it. The environment has changed significantly, simply through education and awareness.

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I think a workplace is different to a forum though. It's excellent that people have learned to respect those around them. I think that's great. But they do have the advantage of being able to see those around them, and to see if they become affected beyond what was expected. In a forum, we don't have that advantage, so, imo, it's up to those who know they can easily be affected, to either opt out, or to back out at least for a while, if it happens. We have no way of knowing whether or not a person is, or can be, affected. The person does know, and they have ability to deal with it.

ETA: I'm not suggesting not trying make us aware of the possibilities, and to try to be more kind, for want of a better word. The world, and this forum, would be a much better place if we were all kinder to others. I do suggest doing it without criticism though. (I'm not saying that there was any criticism in this thread). Suggestion rather than criticism, which is fault-finding, and likely to have the opposite effect.

Edited by Phil Deakins

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I added to my last post as you were writing yours. I think it's relevant.

I believe that cyberbullying is a major problem, as you said. It's not something I've come across, and it's not something that we have here. I think it's generally young people who indulge in it, and here we are generally a more mature community.

Edited by Phil Deakins

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4 minutes ago, Phil Deakins said:

I believe that cyberbullying is a major problem, as you said. It's not something I've come across, and it's not something that we have here. I think it's generally young people who indulge in it, and here we are generally a more mature community.

Phil, if you don't have the personality to feel it, that's a good thing for you,  but it might also mean that you don't recognise it. I don't want to sound critical, but I really wish I could agree with your comment.

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1 hour ago, Rya Nitely said:

I would ask myself why do I respond defensively to a post about showing kindness.

Solar's response was not defensive; it was commonsense advice: If you have blocked someone on this forum and someone else quotes them (so that you see their post anyway) just keep scrolling and move past the post. Solar then gave another tip, explaining how to collapse the quoted part of the post so that it's not visible and you don't have to read it.

There was nothing defensive about their response. It was simple advice, and good advice at that.

I also agree with their summation that nobody should have to choose between responding to a post and remaining silent because their words might be regarded as "too sharp". There have been times when I have spent over half an hour crafting a response to a post made by someone whom I suspect may struggle with my advice if it's not given in a very softly-softly manner. I've edited and re-edited my words so that they come across as non-upsetting and as generic as possible while still giving the advice that's needed. It's taken a lot of my time get those few words of advice just right, but on occasion I sense that it has to be done. But not everyone has the time nor the inclination to do that (and sometimes I don't have the inclination either) and on occasion there is a requirement for tough love.

While I'm an advocate of that saying "Be kind to everyone, because everyone is fighting their own battles", sometimes the best kindness is not to wrap someone in cotton wool and handle them with kid gloves for fear of upsetting them. Sometimes the best kindness is not pandering to their every wish or demand for sensitive treatment and hand-holding every step of the way, but instead to give them the ability to stand up and take those steps on their own.

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3 minutes ago, Skell Dagger said:

While I'm an advocate of that saying "Be kind to everyone, because everyone is fighting their own battles", sometimes the best kindness is not to wrap someone in cotton wool and handle them with kid gloves for fear of upsetting them. Sometimes the best kindness is not pandering to their every wish or demand for sensitive treatment and hand-holding every step of the way, but instead to give them the ability to stand up and take those steps on their own.

May I just say that, replying to me is not one of those times - ever :D

Edited by Phil Deakins

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39 minutes ago, Orwar said:

As someone who suffers from mental health issues, the whole mental health awareness is just a wanna-do-good crusade that in no way has enough impact to change anything for the better,

That not true. Since they started the respect and RUOK awareness programs at my work, the environment has changed. It's made it possible for me to go work again, and feel safe, without daily threats. It's working.

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8 minutes ago, Phil Deakins said:

May I just say that, replying to me is not one of those times - ever :D

Phil, mate? You can be an annoying, curmudgeonly, contrarywise, argumentative, thread-elongating, last-word w*nker sometimes, but you're our annoying, curmudgeonly, contrarywise, argumentative, thread-elongating, last-word w*nker. And the very fact that I'm using those words with you should show you that I know I don't need to tippy-toe around you  ;)

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14 minutes ago, Skell Dagger said:

Sometimes the best kindness is not pandering to their every wish or demand for sensitive treatment and hand-holding every step of the way, but instead to give them the ability to stand up and take those steps on their own.

 

14 minutes ago, Skell Dagger said:

But not everyone has the time nor the inclination to do that (and sometimes I don't have the inclination either) and on occasion there is a requirement for tough love.

These were the answers to school yard bullying. Opinions have changed - don't fix the victims, fix the offenders.

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10 minutes ago, Rya Nitely said:

These were the answers to school yard bullying. Opinions have changed - don't fix the victims, fix the offenders.

I was bullied for years at school, both mentally and physically. Throughout my entire school life, in fact.

I stand by my words.

ETA: Allow me to clarify. Some people coddled me (and yes, sometimes I needed the hugs that came with the coddling, especially after I'd been physically attacked) and others gave me the tough love ( tools and advice) that I needed to begin coping with the bullies. Take a guess at which came in most useful to me, both at that time and subsequently throughout my life.

Edited by Skell Dagger
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28 minutes ago, Rya Nitely said:

Phil, if you don't have the personality to feel it, that's a good thing for you,  but it might also mean that you don't recognise it. I don't want to sound critical, but I really wish I could agree with your comment.

:) I do feel things. I don't have a leather skin. In fact I'm quite a sensitive person, and I'm a strong advocate of kindness. But I'm also not bad at attacking. In fact I'm quite good at it, so I can more than hold my own. I don't do it, of course, because I'd get banned these days.

Since the very start of my SL forum times, back in RA, I was under attack because I used traffic bots, which were greatly frowned on by the users there. And users back then attacked with impunity. But I had a policy, which I often stated back then, that I don't attack anyone unless they attack me first. And I stuck to it. If they attacked first, the gloves were off. I don't think I've ever attacked anyone in the current forum incarnation, but I've occasionally been sorely tempted. Correction: I did do a very slight attack on Love recently, and I apologised for it later. It was very slight, but I felt the temptation.

I don't think I need to recognise it, Rya. Kindness is always the best way, so recognising the need isn't necessary. My nature is to be kind. I can mix it when I have to, but I prefer to live by the kindness in my nature. Unfortunately, my nature isn't so kind that I just turn away from things when they crop up, but they only crop up from people who aren't going to be over-sensitive to the responses.

Edited by Phil Deakins
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16 minutes ago, Skell Dagger said:

Phil, mate? You can be an annoying, curmudgeonly, contrarywise, argumentative, thread-elongating, last-word w*nker sometimes, but you're our annoying, curmudgeonly, contrarywise, argumentative, thread-elongating, last-word w*nker. And the very fact that I'm using those words with you should show you that I know I don't need to tippy-toe around you  ;)

Thank you, Skell :)

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2 minutes ago, Cindy Evanier said:

Phil's a ***** cat.  He has always been kind to me.  

❤️ :)

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3 minutes ago, Cindy Evanier said:

Phil's a ***** cat.  He has always been kind to me.  

omg I got censored and I wasn't being rude.  Kinda ironic in this thread  lol

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I wonder if making it one word would avoid the censorship. Let's see, pussycat.

ETA: Yep.

Edited by Phil Deakins
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1 hour ago, Rya Nitely said:

That not true. Since they started the respect and RUOK awareness programs at my work, the environment has changed. It's made it possible for me to go work again, and feel safe, without daily threats. It's working.

   My empirical conclusion differs from yours, that does not make my statement globally false and your statement globally true. They are two sides of the same coin - change and progression often (if not 'always') come with benefits as well as negative side-effects. Whether a certain change is for the better or the worse is a matter of perspective. Just like Skell, I've been coddled with and I've been given tools to cope - and for me, the tools were what worked in the long run. You can't change the world to suit or favor one group of individuals. It's like saying that you should greet people with 'Shalom' because there's a 0.25% chance that they might be Jewish. 
   I function without issue in my environment, not because the environment changed, but because I was taught how to work with my differences. I've turned my disabilities into assets, and there are things I do better than most others because of how my mind is wired differently that makes up for those things which I am less inclined to succeed in for the same reason. 

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It doesn't have to be an either/or issue -- both the environment and the individual need to be educated for beneficial changes to manifest.
The environment HAS changed over the years. Not that long ago (depending upon one's issue, but let's just say if one had a major anxiety attack in public on a regular basis), you'd be shuttled off to a psyc ward and pretty much be unemployable.  Both education of the public and tools given to those afflicted played a part in the progress for those with mental illness.
Likewise, the environment has changed for gay people and this makes it easier to cope in the world of work. I met an elderly lesbian who was thrown into the Psyc ward and given shock treatment to 'change her gayness'. No amount of 'coping skills' would have helped her. And very few 'coping skills' taught to a gay child born into a typical Baptist home will solve the situation.

I shudder at the direction I see our country headed toward (USA). Back alley abortions/deaths for women, the overturning of marriage equality and the suffering this would cause to those seen as 2nd class citizens and stripped of the rights others have (not being able to visit a dying partner in the hospital because one is not 'family', or the economic hardships caused by losing the benefits conferred by marriage status, for example).

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6 minutes ago, Luna Bliss said:

I shudder at the direction I see our country headed toward (USA).

I think this change of direction will be temporary. Gerrymandering can't hold back changing demographics forever and economic tailwinds eventually die down. It may get worse before it gets better, but I do think it'll get better.

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9 minutes ago, Madelaine McMasters said:
30 minutes ago, Luna Bliss said:

I shudder at the direction I see our country headed toward (USA).

I think this change of direction will be temporary. Gerrymandering can't hold back changing demographics forever and economic tailwinds eventually die down. It may get worse before it gets better, but I do think it'll get better.

I hope that's the case.

It's the supreme court turning so conservative that has me thinking it will go on a long while though..

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