I have to say in regards to my blogging, the journey has been positive as well as negative with my chronic illness group. The journey has had several ups and downs as well as in’s and outs.
There have been awesome times as well as some very upsetting and down right insulting and infuriating times.
This is social media by golly, it can be supportive, with positive and enlightened people adding to the day to day, and it can be negative and hurtful, with insulting people that knock ya down.
One person in my chronic illness group had an issue that I tried time and time again to resolve, to no avail. No matter what I suggested to this person, the response was consistently negative, even betraying a profound lack of empathy for other people in far worse condition than he. The last straw came when he annoyed one of my close friends with his pompous attitude, and uncharitable remarks.
At a minimum, we should all care for one another’s well-being. Shouldn’t that be the cornerstone of a civilized society? This persons lack of compassion and empathy hurt my soul. How could someone be so uncaring? I’m not saying I’m the next coming of Christ, or the mother Mary, but I do have a strong faith, and do care about the well-being of others. This man actually said that he did not care about others; only himself. What could possibly cause someone to be so self centered? I have no clue. I’ve had a hard life, but despite personal hardships, I’ve always cared about those less fortunate than myself. If someone is hungry or suffering, it troubles me deeply.
Accompanying one complaint regarding the quality of the meals he was receiving at his facility, was a picture of a meal that – in my opinion – looked well-balanced. To cut a long story short, I advised him to stop complaining and suck it up.
No it wasn’t surf and turf, but it appeared to be a complete and nutritious meal, so I told him as much. When he argued that he expected more for the money he paid to his nursing home, My response was that he should be grateful that he could afford his managed care. This was not received well, and along with another group member who sympathized with him, he continued to post negative and derisive comments.
After multiple requests for me to ditch him because of his complaining, I relented and dismissed him from the group.
I hate kicking folks out of the group, and I know I can be a sucker at times, keeping people longer than I should, but damn everyone has their limits.
Truth be known I felt bad because he was in a facility. Just a heads up folks, people in a facility can be as big an asshole or bigger than the rest of us.
In his defense, the woman who encouraged some of his more abhorrent posts, posted this:
To which I responded:
What I’m getting at with all of this is that in spite of any good intentions you may have in your dealings with others, some people will always be prepared to meet your best efforts with scorn and derision.
While I love my group, I am beginning to see how dealing with so many people from various walks of life, can be very demanding. By continuing my work toward building a support network for sufferers of chronic illnesses, as well as raising awareness of MS and other chronic illness, I’m becoming increasingly aware of an ugly side that pervades online communities such as ours. I know I got very ugly with this woman, and I’m not proud of it, but I tried to handle this in a manner that was best for the group.