Some thoughts for Geo and whoever else wants to read them

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Posted by pinksharkmark ( on August 30, 2000 at 16:57:53:

I first posted to this board back in March of '99. I was nearing the end of a particularly lengthy and vicious cycle. Most of my posts were questions, but I managed to contribute some new info as well, regarding Tramadol, a synthetic opioid. If memory serves correctly, I'm pretty sure I threw in a self-indulgent whiney post as well, and got some messages of support.

When I am at the peak of a cycle, I get hit BAD... so bad that I can't work. When my '99 cycle ended, I plunged back into work, trying to regain lost wages and the thousands of dollars I spent on Zomig and Imitrex. I live in the Dominican Republic, and have no medical insurance. Not only do I pay full pop for all my meds, but I also pay to have them Fedexed here. Anyway... my internet surfing time dropped to almost zero. Every now and then I would check out the message board, but I stopped posting completely.

When I am in cycle, this horrid disease consumes my entire life. When I am in remission, I try not to think of it all. I guess that is another reason why I stopped dropping by I just wanted to stop DWELLING on the beast. I don't think anyone was harmed by my absence. Let's face it, I didn't have anything new to contribute anyway.

In early January of this year, I started shadowing pretty heavily. By mid-May I was consuming Imitrex at a pretty fair clip, and starting to miss work, so I decided to check out

I happened to return at a time when a LOT was going on... flame wars, some truly hateful posts from some truly hateful individuals, seemingly endless threads of "in-jokes" and hazing by cliques who obviously enjoyed each other's company and chose to use the board for their private messages, as well as the usual venting, medical discussions and support messages.

"Wow!" I thought to myself. "Things have certainly changed around here since I last checked!" I dug back through several weeks of archives before posting my thoughts on the radical changes to the character of the site. I got several public and several private posts from people who agreed with my point of view, and several public posts disagreeing with me. While some of those who disagreed raised thoughtful points that made me reconsider and eventually publicly modify my position, there were also some who

1) accused me of advocating censorship

2) excoriated me for leaving the board while in remission and returning only when I was in cycle

3) characterized me as a "drive-by" looking for a "magic bullet"

4) ummm... there was more, but you get the drift.

After getting put in my place, I decided that the best approach for me to take was to plow through the clutter and read only those posts I felt had merit, and to post only when I felt I had something to contribute, and then only after carefully reviewing what I had written, in order to avoid offending anyone unintentionally. I also decided to stop referring anyone who was not a clusterhead to this site.

Geo, here's the deal. Regardless of any one individual's opinion of what the message board (and don't forget, the board is only part of the site) should be, DJ is the sole arbiter of its content. He created the site, he maintains the site, he pays for the site. He has chosen to not only let EVERY post (with VERY few exceptions) stand, he even ARCHIVES them all. That is his right.

Do I believe that there are many posts that would be better handled through e-mail or chat? Yup, I sure do. Do I believe that some posters have reading comprehension skills that are less than perfect? Yup, I sure do. Do I believe that some posters should review their hastily composed posts before pushing the "post your message" button? Yup, I sure do. Do I believe that you have gotten a raw deal since you started posting here? Yup, I sure do. Do I believe that you would have been treated more gently if you had chosen a more neutral word than "grime" in your infamous post? Yup, I sure do. But that's just the way that pinksharkmark feels about things.

I am in the process of reviewing, bit by bit, the ENTIRE archived messages. I have observed that, just as we clusterheads go through cycles, so does this message board. At times, the dominant theme is discussion of theories and therapies, venting, support and humor. At other times the majority of the posts seem to consist of personal attacks, misunderstandings, apologies for misunderstandings, ENDLESS threads of cliquey comments that have meaning only for the select few, etc, etc.

That's just the way things are. Learn to deal with it. Oh, sure, every now and then someone makes a public appeal for some return to decorum, and, depending on the stature of the poster, things might settle down for a bit. But the only time things calmed down for any significant length of time was back when DJ himself pulled the plug for a few days and shut the board down completely.

As for you personally, Geo, I have read and re-read every word of each of your posts, and I am at a loss to see what you have done wrong, or how anything you have written could be taken as personal attacks. I am sorry you have chosen to "dumb it down" a bit from your previous articulate style, which I enjoyed, but that is only my opinion. If others felt you were being pretentious, and their opinion matters to you, I can understand why you chose to go this route, though I prefer your original style.

In closing, there are well-informed people who post here with valuable insights. There are warm-hearted people who post here who provide a badly-needed shoulder to cry on. There are humorous people who post here who make me laugh so hard that I lose control of my bladder. There are idiots who post here who make me wonder who they managed to con into operating a computer on their behalf. There are hateful people who post here that make me a firm believer in retroactive birth control. There are hot-tempered people who post here who make me wish it was possible to e-mail valium. There are people who post here to pass on their success stories with non-standard medications and get called junkies for doing so. So be it.

On the whole, I still believe the valuable posts outweigh the worthless ones, and the company of the good people outweighs the annoyance of sharing cyberspace with the jerks. But that is just pinksharkmark's opinion. I am hoping you choose to stick around.


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