Don't get me wrong. It really is a great community. There are many, many wonderful people there. Alas, there always seems to be a few who insist on using the sand box the same way a cat will, and that's...well, kinda gross, really.
I have readers that aren't from GitP, so I think it might help to explain what went down. Like I needed more crap after last weekend, this just had to happen on the heels of such a "happy" trip to NY.
Over the last few weeks, I'd been contemplating leaving GitP. In much the same way I'd come to realize that living alone wasn't smart, staying in a place where I'd become so emotionally invested in the problems of others was ALSO not smart. The fact of the matter is that I have so much on my plate right now, it's actually kind of stupid for me to try and help others.
Ah, but according to the books of old pertaining to Murphy's Law, two things are universal: hydrogen and stupidity. And there seems to be equal amounts of both wherever you turn. I can be quite unintelligent when I don't put my mind to it.
Months ago, this girl posted in the Depression Thread (DT), asking for anyone with experience with PTSD to contact her. I did, but immediately sensed that being male was probably not the greatest thing for her. I'm usually quite good at connecting unseen dots, and I was right. I received a "thanks, but no thanks."
No. Just a few days ago, an epic rant, filled to the brim with psychological discord, was posted to the DT. Whatever help she tried to receive wasn't actually helping. If anything, it seemed as though she was not just coming apart, but flying apart. Someone needed to help this girl, and I thought it should be a hardcore effort. This was my primary thought...to help. My secondary thought was, after last weekend's debacle of a family gathering, that perhaps helping someone would make me feel better. Please note my intentions and their order. Her first, me second.
In private messages, I came at her full steam ahead. "I'm going to help! There is salvation to be had in the psychological arms of Bor! Together, we shall slay this PTSD beast!"
At first, I wanted to get her on the phone. I thought connecting to a real human being would be good for her. We were never going to meet. I didn't want anything from her but a little trust. And somehow, for a guy usually hung up on internet safety, I failed to think about what I was asking. "If you want my number, just ask. And when you call...Well, I'll possibly turn into a psychopath who wants to stalk you, terrify you further, and..." Hello? Dumbass! That's not how you help someone with major trust issues.
I spoke at length with Becky. I formulated what I thought was a better plan. This girl and I would talk online for a while...let her learn that I could, in fact, be trusted...then give her my number...and in time, I'd help her face the PTSD beast and teach her how to keep it caged. Such mental monsters can rarely be slain, but they can be controlled. And it all seemed fairly sound to me.
Along the way, I'd made a couple of promises. The first was to never intentionally hurt her. The other was that if she wanted me to stop trying to help that she should just say so.
Here's the problem: the way I approach those in need, with somewhat intense caring and consideration for their feelings...? That's not the way my efforts are returned. I walk in with that silly little thing called hope. I keep thinking other people would like to have some hope too. That's usually when my hopes get kicked in the testicles.
And that's what the girl did. Instead of saying something akin to, "I really appreciate you trying so hard to help, but I don't think you can," her response after numerous private messages was, "We're never gonna talk. I have a therapist. And you caring this much is freaking me out." Okay, that last I can actually understand. But the flat out denial of ever talking, without giving it a chance...? And the therapist...that she doesn't talk to?!? What...what on Earth did you post on the DT for? How do you come along and open a can of worms, then deny the very existence of said worms?
(As I write this, I'm using another tab to watch another site where this drama continues to unfold. Where I initially thought I was being demonized, it turns out they are shredding the girl apart. While I am pleased at being vindicated, I still see the girl's situation as...sad.)
GitP has been an amazing place for me. I've met one amazing person after another, with them helping me in ways I couldn't have imagined. But in the mind of someone with severe recurring depression, it only takes a few people to erase the good and make me focus on the bad. My previous thoughts of leaving had become solidified. She became the straw that broke the camel's back.
Here's where the universal element of stupidity comes strongly into play. I went to the Depression Thread and announced that I was done. The occasional response of being told to F.O. and/or being ignored finally pushed me over the edge. And while I discussed the recent event that had done so, I made every effort to keep the identity of the person who'd done the pushing a secret. Even my pronoun use was multiple choice, with me claiming "he/she/it" had hurt me.
What's coming out on another site is this girl's ability to be an attention whore. According to other people, she's homophobic, and perhaps a little too vocal about it. She actually stated that she hated all Playgrounders except for the guy she eventually ended up dating (and eventually broke up with), only to reappear a week later to ask for help in the Relationship Woes & Advice Thread. Now, still apparently despising us, she dropped in for a rant about the level of psychological mess she that is. So I'm not the only one to notice that she's sending a vast amount of mixed signals.
And there I am, trying to protect her identity, when she appears on the DT to say, "He's talking about me."
Honestly, how stupid do you have to be? I kept my mouth shut, pointing in several different directions and keeping it vague...and she just had to specify that she was both victim (of my overzealous attempt to help) and villain (as the one who'd hurt me).
Instead of realizing how dumb her move actually was and deleting her post, she waited long enough for people to name her and say, "Golly...you're right and Bor is wrong."
It gets better, as she sent me yet another private message, giving me "what for" about singling her out - which was HER doing, not mine - and a second message to say that I probably ruined the possibility of her developing a better friendship with her ex. *I* did nothing. Every social hole that she's living in was dug using her very own shovel.
And the end result...? I still feel bad. I still wish I could help. But no is no, and this is the kind of girl who would start slinging accusations to get me in even greater trouble, if only to have the drama level kept at maximum.. (I'm blessed in that Becky read every message sent to that girl, and so there is a witness to my lack of severe wrongdoing.)
I'm also leaving GitP for a while. I may return, but I've essentially been told I was an ass for caring so much. There are the many who don't like that I'm "taking my ball and going home," (as they say in Playground parlance), but it's those few that have inflicted entirely too much pain for me to even want to deal with it right now.
Those who are linked to me on Facebook can always direct those who are not connected. I'm still around...but Bor the Barbarian Monk is done with the Playground for the time being.
Be well, and DFTBA.