Post # 1
I am posting this as an anonymous blogger because of the topic. I am one of the newer members of this blog/board. I decided to join in because it appeared to be a place where a group of women, who are going through similar experiences, can join and discuss, celebrate, and share advice. As I have been watching and reading some of the responses to certain topics I can’t help but feel like I am back in high school. If you knew me, you would be aware that I would not take a million dollars to repeat high school again. Some of the responses that are posted here are plain mean, judgmental, and attacking! I find myself reading so many serious questions posed by group members and it makes me so sad to scroll down the page, counting the negative and unnecessary responses. I see things like: “I don’t even understand why this is a problem”, “I would have never done that if I were you”, “I think you are the problem in this situation” and “gosh, I don’t even know where to start with you”… and my question is WHY? WHY the mean words, the “less than helpful” feedback, the making fun of the OP? I think some of us forget that the creators of this blog wanted to invent an environment where women felt safe asking questions (ANY questions), sharing personal stories (some very painful and difficult), and giving advice (the constructive kind). Some of the women here may not have anyone else to share their secrets or are in serious emotional and physical situations that they can’t reveal anywhere else. I see so many responses that imply that the OP shouldn’t have done this or that but in the end who are we to judge? We are all different and are in different stages in our relationships. Some are awaiting engagement, some are engaged, married, divorced, some divorced more than once, some expecting a child, others discussing a loss of one. We are all women in need of support, small and large. We all perceive things differently and experience similar things in different ways… in essence that is why we share in the first place. Sometimes all it takes is a few kind words to lift someone’s spirit and just as well it takes only a few words to crush them.
Some may wonder why I am writing this in the first place and the answer is that I came here to join a group of women who understand some of the situations I may be experiencing. I came to look for advice, support, to celebrate, to educate, and to be educated. However, I find myself being scared to post a question because someone will retaliate or post something nasty/judgmental. I find myself asking why can’t people use the simple rule of “if you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t say anything at all”? I don’t expect us to hold hands and sing kumbaya around the fire but some mutual respect and objectivity would build a solid foundation. I am guessing some of you may respond negatively to this post, however I hope there are those that can join in and encourage positive feedback/discussions among all members and topics.
Before anyone gets the idea that I think ALL of the women on this blog are guilty of the above mentioned behaviors, I do not. I do want to thank all of those that provide thoughtful, respectful, kind, and helpful feedback. I see many wonderful posts and supportive advice. It really shows when you take your time to really help someone. For that, I thank you!
Food for thought…
Post # 3
While this board is much friendlier than other wedding planning boards, that doesn’t mean people are going to lie just so that everyone stays happy.
No matter what question you ask, there are going to be differing opinions. Isn’t the point of asking questions to get opinions from different types of thinking?
Some bees will agree with the OP in a thread and some bees will disagree.
If I feel very strongly in the opposite direction of someone, why shouldn’t I share that opinion? What if I really want to original poster to see my way because I sincerely think they are wrong?
What if the OP IS wrong? Are we all to stand by and let them run their situation off a cliff in a fiery blaze?
It is a fact of life that people will always have disagreements but for the most part, this board is great at keeping everyone in line and mostly respectful of each other.
Post # 4
@rosworms: But grown women should be able to answer honest feedback without alienating the OP. I see it all the time and it drives me banana snacks. Sometimes I will see a response from a usually calm and rational bee that is so out of line/character that while I am dismayed, I give them a pass because its out of the ordinary. Then other times there are responders who you can tell love tearing the OP apart and it’s gross to watch. I don’t know. People can still respond honestly and classy.
And seriously, I’m getting really tired of the groups ganging up on OPs. It’s just not helpful. It’s akin to the person who tears someone down so they feel superior. I feel bad for these broads that they have to resort to such drama in order to ‘give feedback’. Grow up and respond like an adult. I totally cosign with the OP. Although I wish she didn’t go anon because it lends a wee bit less credibility.
Post # 5
@rosworms thank you for pointing out something i should have clarified. I think different opinions and diverse adivce is one of the goals as to why people come here. I absolutely encourage that and think its one of the key values that drive discussions. My point was about HOW this advice/these comments are delivered. As @WillyNilly said, it can be done in a classy way without attacking the OP or other posts. I think if the OP is “wrong” or someone thinks they are there are ways to discuss/give adivce in a manner that is adult like and positive/neutral. Disagreeing with someone does not mean being mean to them or telling them their problem is actually not a problem at all. Also, @WillyNilly, i was really debating on posting this under my original account but i wanted to be straight and honest, and felt this was a way I could do it freely 🙂 Thank you for reading and commenting.
Post # 6
I think it is fair to point out that in some cases the OP is the first person to attack others. It is often not just the bees who are responding.
I also find that it seems to be perfectly acceptable for bees/OP’s to be able to post whatever they like about other people in their OP’s. Some of the things that posters say about their family/friends/strangers is often far worse than I have seen bees post in response. But yet that seems acceptable? I don’t get it. It is ok to call someone a whore or worse because your FI chooses to look at naked pictures of them but it is mean to call out an OP for their disrespectful behaviour?
Post # 7
Hmmm, this post was interesting to me because two of your examples of ‘being mean’:
“I don’t even understand why this is a problem”, “I would have never done that if I were you”
I don’t find these to be mean at all. Blunt, yes, they are blunt, they get right to the point, but not mean.
Sometimes a poster is so lost or has such a large case of bridal brain that it is important to be blunt with them so that it brings them back to earth. The Bees are just being honest in a very straight way. This means that the OP has no chance of misinterpreting what the poster is trying to say (which can happen on the internet).
I think all Bees mean well and unless they are really antagonised then they don’t start off as mean.
I do wish though that people would read an original post carefully (as well as follow up posts) because jumping to conclusions. There was a post recently where most of the Bees assumed an OP was trying to cause trouble when really she was trying to point out that you should do whatever it is you want, regardless of other’s opinions (which is exactly what the other posters were saying too).
Post # 8
I think perhaps we should ask ourselves before we post if we would say this to their face. If not, why put it on the internet? I still think the rules of civil discourse should apply.
Post # 9
@WillyNilly: I agree w/you and OP. You can give someone a differing opinion in a respectful way. I don’t always agree w/people, but if I read a post and cannot think of a respectful way to comment, I just walk away from that thread. I think people can disagree in a civil and nice way. It drives me nuts that people think they are entitled to, or are doing someone some service by saying things in a way that is not that nice. I think people will be much more inclined to hear someone’s point of view and actually consider it if it conveyed in a way that shows compassion.
Post # 11
@AnonymousBeeBee: Well I agree with your post to an extent, but I think it’s also important to have a dose of reality. If all responses were puppy dogs and rainbows, the OP wouldn’t get any real advice. I think that it’s fine to disagree w. the OP, just do it in a respectful way.
I try to be careful and tactful in what I write, but realistically since this is all text-based and you can’t tell tone or body language, I am sure many things are misinterpreted.
This is the internet after all, and there will always be trolls.
To be honest, though, I must be reading the wrong threads since I’ve been here for MONTHS and I don’t really think there’s a whole lot of drama or snarkiness. Women can be emotional… there’s always bound to be a little drama. Just take it with a grain of salt.
Post # 12
@canarydiamond: I have seen responses that have blown my mind:
“If I was your fiance, I would leave in a heartbeat”
“Wow, I am disgusted by ___________”
“I wouldn’t choose either” (this was from a poll specifically asking to pick between two choices…this isn’t so bad but it just wasn’t helpful because it didn’t come with any constructive reasoning like “you know, I think you should keep searching. Both the dresses are great but they just don’t flatter you as much as a ________ probably would.”
“Abortion is wrong” (this was on a thread asking for emotional support in the wake of an abortion)
Then there are the helpful answers:
“it’s not my taste but it’s flattering on your” or “I think if you change the hemline it will be more flattering”
“While I haven’t been through that, I can understand where you’re coming from. Maybe you should talk to someone about it?”
“I am not sure that was the best course of action. I think you should call _______ up again and see if you can get together to talk about your feelings.”
Post # 13
If I alienate the OP, they won’t bother listening to my opinions anyway. If I really want to help them and offer advice, it’s really on me to offer that advice in an “easily digestible” way.
I will admit that I get a little cranky with trolls, but I don’t expect them to take my advice seriously anyway
Post # 14
I see things like: “I don’t even understand why this is a problem”, “I would have never done that if I were you”, “I think you are the problem in this situation” and “gosh, I don’t even know where to start with you”… and my question is WHY? WHY the mean words, the “less than helpful” feedback, the making fun of the OP?
Where are you seeing this? I’ve never seen any of these responses.
@rosworms: + a million
Post # 15
This is a community of adults who have different experiences, different opinions, and different tastes. Just because we’re all experiencing this wedding planning together does not mean we have to agree. So yes, there are some people who I think create problems for themselves, there are some people who do things I would never do, there are some people who baffle me on this board. But, if you ask for my opinion on whether or not they are the problem, or if I thought what they did was right/acceptable/normal, you’d better be prepared for a truthful answer. If you can’t handle honest opinions, a mostly-anonymous internet forum is not the best place to be!
FWIW, I’m not going to ba a jerk and name-call, or be snarky, or rude to the OP; I won’t make fun of the OP. But at the same time, I will be honest, and sometimes, the truth hurts. Plus, some people just misread comments and misinterpret the tone/spirit of some posts sometimes. When a controversial topic is posted, people are a lot more defensive.
Post # 16
@AnonymousBeeBee: I think some post are mean and some people are really sensitive. Some also have an obivious chip on their shoulder. I don’t think all of you examples are mean personally. I’ve seen far worse here. I would suggest that if you seek advice online, understand everyone wont understand what you say or like how you say it. we should be mature enough not to turn to personal attacks just because we dont agree.
I am often attacked here for my opinion but I dont take it to heart. I figure it comes with the territory. As long as that group think mean girl mentality isn’t supported by the site, I can overlook it and enjoy this marital process.