I tweaked you back in the ‘‘race relations’’ thread, after you called someone a ‘‘piece of shit.’’ For the record, I thought your response was great! You took my criticism in the spirit in which it was intended, and you laughed it off. You wrote:
The thing to remember is that this board is not a popularity contest. Don’t worry about what people think of you! Who cares?
Nobody here (except maybe your lover) knows you well enough to make an intelligent judgment about you. Remember that. When people respond to your posts, they are only responding to your words, not to your value as a person. You can’t take this stuff personally. It’s not worth getting upset about.
On the other hand, I can understand why you feel mistreated. Some posters are pretty quick to get personal. Instead of saying, ‘‘Your post didn’t make a lot of sense,’’ they say, ‘‘You are stupid.’’ Instead of saying, ‘‘You misread my post,’’ they say, ‘‘You don’t know how to read.’’
Some posters don’t seem to understand the distinction between criticizing a person’s comments and criticizing the person herself.
The next time someone makes that mistake, call them on it if it bothers you. Tell them: ‘‘If you don’t like what I write, fine. If you don’t like me, save it for the pit.’’ And once you’ve got them in the pit, they’re all yours.
Remember: Nobody likes to be labeled or called names. The world is not divided into ‘‘nice’’ people and ‘‘asshole’’ people. Most people act nice sometimes and act like assholes at other times. But most people will treat you with respect if you treat them with respect. If they don’t, let that be their problem, not yours.
The people who use this board as a place to receive personal validation are setting themselves up to get hurt. And when they get hurt, they fight back with personal insults.
But most of the time, when someone makes fun of you, it’s not meant to be hurtful. Most of the time, it’s just someone’s idea of being funny. So don’t take it personally. Just laugh it off.
A friend of mine told me that he thinks the meaning of life is to have fun. The more I think about it, the more I think he might be right.