Pooh that wasn't exactly what I had in mind, but good demonstration of the principle of the rules nevertheless
Jeff - define what you think NO COMMENT (unless you ask for it) actually means
(I know you were poohed but really!)
OK - I'll start us up (properly
) with a bit of a purge as I need a little break mostly for purely medical reasons which you know about by now if you've been in the I ATEN'T DEAD thread.
There are also reasons for it that relate to the forum and the various lessons we learnt in the Recent Events thread that I need to vent about (still
), but from my own perspective because, medically again, I needed that thread like a hole in the head, but I couldn't not
be involved it for various reasons. I'm going to try and confine to the issues I have as relates to this forum and not the actual reasons or issues that led up to that thread being set up.
Because of that I can say that I do need and want feedback on this
so you can post back if you like and I will answer, but maybe not straight away, because I do need to limit myself on posting here from tomorrow onwards when I start with yet more new meds.
The me you mostly don't know.
I said that I'm most certainly 'out' as being a chronic clinical depressive on here, but don't go into much depth on how that manifests itself in me functionally on a daily basis. This is because I'm very good at managing and controlling my 'condition'. In fact I'm far too
good at controlling it and that is one of the reasons why I ended up getting far too involved in 'Recent events'.
I've had trouble with depression and especially with insomnia for most of my life and the earliest manifestation was when I was 6. I'm now 52. Which is the reason why I wasn't diagnosed as having depression until I was 42 in 2000. By that I mean that I didn't start to take medication for it until then. I was 'normal' up to that point, because I had learned to cope with stress and feeling unhappy very well indeed by various means which included changing jobs every few years which often included moving to a new office. So although I was first prescribed drugs for it only 10 years ago, my condition was there long before and I was basically in denial.
Other things that are 'wrong' with me as a result of chronic clinical depression or related issues.
Obsessive Compulsive Disorder
(OCD) - this manifests mildly as excessive concentration and focus and more strongly with some elements of repetitive behaviour including constantly reading back posts, emails, PMs etc; Panic attacks
- socially (mild claustrophobia based in crowds of people rather than confinement) and affecting independence (driving in terms of confidence due to mood or physical factors); Athsma/Eczema
(stress-related in which depression is sometimes a factor); Insomnia/chronic physical fatigue
(which feeds the panic attacks with trouble driving because of exhaustion and with my ability to deal with people in environments I cannot control); Hyperactivity
this is mental and chemical rather than physical and the reason why has been underlined during this last week - I need to be sedated in essence because my body cannot rest without medication.
Those are the main ones and they effect how I am on this and other forums and why I feel far more comfortable and happy online. Some of the above may come as a surprise to you given that I have in some respects been acting like a bitch-troll from hell recently
Not some pathetic little mouse who had a horror of driving. Was scared of going around the supermarket to which she had had to be driven to and even then sometimes still wouldn't go in, because there were far too many people about.
The pathetic little mouse has gone more or less, but last week I didn't dare drive because I was so knackered and this week so far, I've been sticking to local roads that don't have much traffic to speak of. The dog is doing his nut 'cos he's getting so little exercise...
They have also affected my ability to work and, for various other lesser reasons, I am now fully retired and took my pension early.
De-tox & Recent Events
De-toxing and switching over to new medication may seem to be unrelated to what happened in that thread, but the reason I was so involved in posting in there was, because I felt responsible. Why? I didn't start the dispute and, with Tony, I certainly did my utmost to try and contain it... This was touched on in the thread itself.
Here's why in context.
(Hyperactivity/OCD) Quatermass and myself had more or less agreed to keep away from each other on our own accounts, but I still could not stand by and see him treating people so contemptuously and hurtfully. When I started the 1st I ATEN'T DEAD thread , I had not expected him to post in there at all. He did so because he had also weaned off anti-depressants before and wanted to help me and share his experiences. That was fine by me and he was contributing responsibly up to the part where he annoyed Chris.
(Insomnia) That took place on the worst possible day for me as I was past the 3rd full day of my de-tox and had had 1 night on the new sedatives. The day before, at the height of withdrawal I had 2 very difficult Roundworld incidents to cope with, which lead to me breaking down in tears and shaking like a leaf on and off for the rest of the day, because I was so exhausted and couldn't handle any face to face confrontations, even though they would normally have been shrugged off. Morning after I was a little better having managed a few hours decentish sleep, but regrettably I went into the thread saw there had been some confrontation and posted telling those concerned to shut up. (OCD) That set me back and then I read the posts more thoroughly and saw the potential flashpoint. That was the point at which I talked to Tony by PM, interspersed with going to see my GP to discuss progress of the de-tox and then the sh*t hit the fan when Chris came in and lost his temper.
(OCD) Next day Tony started the Recent events thread and I did a 'please calm down' and carry on with being silly post in I ATEN'T DEAD. We then swapped threads for a bit as I had been involved in the incident and had things to say and Tony went into IAD and was silly for me
(Hyperactivity/OCD) I posted in intense bursts following all the early comments as the incident was aired and previous events recounted. As more people came in and Chris responded on his own behalf I began to respond to the points raise as to my own relationship with Quatermass and on my own experience with him on thread and off. At times I got - not defensive exactly, but needed to put things very clearly and strongly into context and other people who had been involved with him came to have their say too.
(Insomnia/OCD)Sunday I felt like I'd done several rounds with Mike Tyson but slept pretty well, although this time it was because I was so knackered with intensity of the previous day and the emotional side of it although the posting had begun to get less demanding and was even funny in places and, because Quatermass had put in such an incredible post making his last apologies and farewell, it had gone much better than I expected.
(OCD/Hyperactivity/Insomnia) Because I'd got up late, I stayed on very late into Monday morning and my mood was shattered by Quatermass coming back in to reply to Del's comments which were mistimed and had set things off enough to make him come back at her, more wounded than angry at what she had to say about things from her angle. I was so shattered that I more or less said bugger it all and went off to bed. I did sleep for a bit, but 3 hours later I was up again because I'd got thoroughly furious over it all flaring up again and couldn't get it out of my head. I got up & went online to remind myself of what had been posted (nothing arising from Q's response to Del had come in since) so, knowing just angry I can get (and this one being a douzy
) I fume but posted asking people, but especially Q & Del, not to post for a bit and undo what good had been done so far until Tony was able to get in and then we could sort it out properly without it escalating too much in the meantime.
I PMed Tony to alert him of the development and, knowing I wouldn't be able to sleep again until that had been addressed I waited for Tony to arrive, seething all the while.
At this point I need to explain that I hate getting angry, because I don't like to lose control of myself. A lot of my psychological problems stem from my being able to control all my emotions very well indeed, in the this case too well because when I lose it it's volcanic. So, not being in very good shape at all with the highs and lows in that that I knew I was ready to blow and blow completely. But I waited anyway and luckily Tony decided to let things continue in the thread so sort themselves out.
There was a slight misunderstanding between Tony and myself in that he thought I wanted things closed down before anyone else posted and stuffed things up again. I posted saying I agreed with him and that all I wanted was a timeout until he came in to assess things and that we needed to clear this up. And then I went nuclear as cleanly as I know how - as in clean like a laser. I was too far gone and as a result I was really violent (but not impolite) in expressing how much I had had enough of the situation and with Q yet again raking up the coals. And then people had their say and it was over. Tony put the thread down from sticky status and it is now sinking into the past.
Openness on the forum.
I'll try and keep this short(er). There was a lack of it in all sorts of way during this affair. Some of it was well intentioned because nearly everyone who had negative contact with Q felt a measure of sympathy for him in that it was obvious he was struggling with a huge problem. I've said about mine and I genuinely wanted to try and help him get over these absurdly inappropriate and needless flights of rage. We all failed, especially Q, but we did try to keep some of it off the threads and catching fire as it did these last few days. It doesn't help in the end and there are times when you need to confront things in the open, if they're being done in the open. Tony, myself and others did so at the time and Chris was simply the latest of these incidents. We were fire-fighting and we would have had to keep on doing it, so Tony, like Walter Plinge in Maskerade
, took the decision to get the fire out of the thread where it started and put it in a nice big fire-proof box and let it rage and burn out - eventually. You all helped and we all learned lessons.
My lesson is that I need to have some fun and keep away from stressful situations while I get this drug switchover dealt with which will possibly take several weeks to achieve - so I'm only be going to be posting in about 3 threads on here for a good while - (with maybe a few exceptions for birthday thread and the Last Hero debate) and keep to places where I know I'll have a good time and distract my busy brain in some worthwhile and relaxing activity.
For the forum as a whole - we'll be OK I think. We're decent good-tempered people for the most and we don't need the hassle that things like this engender. It's the horror of situations like this where your instincts are to get it of the thread as quickly as possibly - but where do you put it to stop it spreading? I can tell you as an experienced mod and forum poster that the very worst forum I've been on for rows like this and backstabbing, for hostile cliques, newbie-bashers and trolls was a site that didn't have PM available to any
members except admin and support members - the ones who subscribed. Some of the worst behaviour actually came from senior admin. Whispering campaigns and bullying goes on off thread as well as on and more easily, which is why sometimes you need to tackle things like this head on and bugger the confrontation that arises. Sometimes you have to let it happen. Trying to sort it by PM just makes things worse very often. In this case people nerves were jangling and taking offence more readily. We've had a narrow squeak.
Openness for individuals - not everyone realised what problems Q was generating. We all need privacy, but maybe his was respected too well in places. And you can't know everything about people, so I've been open about myself and, long as this is, you still don't know the half of it, although some know more about me than others. I was open about my medical problems, but most of you know I have clinical depression already. You'll notice that 'depression' didn't feature in any of that breakdown of my perspective of all this. Aspects of it are there, but it wasn't actually present in my actions, unless you had eyes to see. Forums and the people on them are all icebergs you only see what you're allowed and there's all kinds of stuff good and bad going on underneath.
Tony - this is not criticism or if it is then it's in the spirit of openness and of being constructive. This is a wonderful place and you moderate on here really well, but it's getting harder and that's inevitable as we grow as a community. I know that Jason and you work together behind the scenes more than the rest of us know, but from the member side of the fence, it's only you who has a regular presence with us on the boards and in some ways it looks like you're not supported too well at times. This time especially for me, it looks that way because when we had the first hints of trouble with Q you were in Tucson and not able to get on much. Similarly I needed to alert you to this situation and it's been dealt with beautifully but before that it was apparently breaking out unchecked in places and affecting the mood of the board. I know you like a low profile unobtrusive role as a rule (we don't see the green 'pen' too much
) but you can't be everywhere and part of the ongoing 'problem' in keeping the peace may be down to people not wanting to 'bother' you and trying to deal with it themselves, so it goes under the radar? With more people in general around now - you only have to look around at how fast the threads move - would it not be a good idea for you to have more support in tending to things? Maybe not officially, but some way to make it easier to be more pro-active and not get spread too thin?
Enough! Feel free to post back to me on the info and issues I've dumped onto here