Here is what happened:
I subscribe to a certain humor page on Facebook. They post funny pics and jokes and videos and the members can post these things on their wall. So I had a friend share a pic on my wall of a group of ppl dancing at a wedding. It was a guy surrounded by a bunch of girls. What I thought was a pic of the guy with his fly open was, in fact, not. There was a bit more in the pic than I thought, but since I viewed this pic on a dinky 11" screen I did not catch what was hanging out of the guys fly. Or he really is that small. One of those.
Thinking this was funny, I posted it on this pages wall, hoping to share the laughs. And immediately it was taken down. (The page is monitored 24/7.) The moderator posting a warning to me. I didn't understand why I was being warned, but hey, my humor offends a lot of ppl so I didn't really think any more about it. I have been a member of this page for quite a while now, so I simply posted an apology and went about my business.
It was done. No hard feeling on eaither end. It had been handled...Right?!?
Some guy, who I had never met or talked to, decided to get on and call me a slut. I know!!! This guy really doen't know me. Slut (and whore) is my C-word. (Actually the C-word doesn't bother me. In fact I consider myself the Queen of C-words. But calling me a slut is like calling any other woman a C) Now my first reaction was pure rage. I wanted to reach through the computer screen and gouge out his eye balls with my bare hands. Or at least write back a reply about how small and syphalitic his dick was.
But I took a second and decided that, since this is someone elses page, I would be respectful and politic.
(Pick up your jaws minions. As I said, it was someone elses page. If it were mine I would have gone through with the eye gouging.) I told him I didn't think name calling was any better than making a mistake of posting a wrongful pic.
Then the thread exploded!!!
The moderator (the same one who gave me the warning) threatened to ban him and, in the end, made him apologize to me. Other ppl I had never meant jumped in to defend me. No one called him any names, but made it very clear they were unhappy with his comments. (He also called me a shemale. WTF made him come up with that one, I have no idea. At least the slut comment had ground.)
After a time he did apologize, for real, and at the end I even joked on the thread about moving along now. What I'm left with though is...well I don't know what. When he called me a slut I was mad. Then I was hurt. How dare this person, who had never met me, say such a hurtful thing. I admit, I cried. Bad. Is it really that easy for ppl to hurt ppl they don't know. That was rhetorical. I know it is that easy. But then I felt guilty for posting the pic because, as innocent as it was, it kinda started the whole thing. This is a page that they try to keep relativly drama free and here I come mucking it up. But I ws also SO proud of myself. I didn't get mean, but still didn't take it. I was diplomatic. That's not something that happens often and, if I could, I would pat myself on the back.
Once the guy apologized and, eventually realized, that he had, like me, made a mistake, I felt bad for him. I felt bad that all these ppl jumped on his case so quickly. I mean he had it coming, but the number of ppl who put him in his place was a bit overwhelming. But at the same time, it kind resored my faith in ppl. As much as this guy didn't know me, and was willing to say what he did, these ppl didn't know me either and came to my
defense. And they did it without getting nasty about it. They were just firm with him. And at one point the term cyber bullying came
And the person who said it was right. This was a classic case of cyber bullying.
Now between the ppl who stood up for me and the amazing moderator all ended up turning out ok. But the fact that this guy said something to me, online, that affected me at home, in real life, falls under my definition of bulling.
If you know anything about me, I DO NOT condone bullying. Of any sort!!! After dealing with it when I was young and worse, watching my daughter go through it, while her school did nothing, it is something that I am very adament about. I have a zero-tolerance policy about it. Now, I have no problem putting someone in their place when it's called for. I can even get nasty about it. But that's when someone is being an asshole and
I'm defending myself or someone else. Not that it's really any better, but I don't think I have ever crossed that line. At least I hope I never have. To tease, call names or badger someone for no reason, or because they are different than you, is just wrong. And it makes me angry. VERY angry.
I don't want to sound hypocritical here, but I think this also needs to be said. I can take a joke. If the guy had called me a slut in jest, I would have probably joked back with him. I've called myself a slut a few times and have no problem with friends teasing me about being a slut when they have humor in their voice. Heck just yesterday I posted about ppl with back hair. But it was a joke!!! The honest truth is, I could care less if you have back hair. Every day, when DJ wakes up, I attach myself to his back and rub my cheek across his shoulders. I don't think I can be too serious about the subject.
Myself, I have no teeth. Last summer, after a number of accidents and a lack of insurence crumbled them, I had them removed. It was an extremely painful and, even more, emotional process. While I still had stiches after having 7 of them removed at once, I was not pronouncing things right. While trying to pronounce the letter F, my friend Larry cracked a joke about it. And it hurt. No I mean really. I was laughing so hard it pulled at my stiches and hurt. He took something that was painful and made me laugh about it. To this day, Lil Miss still jokes with me about "gumming" things and how she can eat certain things I can't because she can chew. And it's funny. Why? Because I can laugh at myself.
What is the difference? Saying things in jest, while sometimes might still offend, are not ment to. A joke is supposed to make someone laugh. It is supposed to be humorous. When something is said or done with malicious intent that is bullying. Will someone be offened by yesterdays post? I'm sure they will, but that is not my intent. I am not trying to justify myself so I can say whatever I want and get away with it. I am just trying to explain what I see as the difference.
I don't want to go on and on about this, because it still gets to me a bit, so I will leave you with this. Minions, please remember that ppl make mistakes. Sometimes it's from not thinking, a misunderstanding, or any other number of reasons. Sometimes ppl are different than you. Ok, most ppl are gonna be different than you. So keep in mind that the things you say and do affect others. And not always in a good way. Sometimes your words and actions hurt others very badly. And, Minions, remember that those ppl hurting you, may also be making a mistake also. They may not realize what they said or did hurt you. They may have thought they were being funny. So just say something. And if you see someone else being bullied stand up for them.
Let's just try to keep these things in mind, huh?
And just in case they ever read this, I would like to give a personal thanks to the ppl on the page for standing up for me. Not enough ppl in the world do that anymore. To the moderator: Thank you for handeling the situation the way you did. There is a reason the page is one of my favorites. After going through all that I have been in the last few months, your page has helped me a LOT!!! The way you handled things just endears me more to the page and the ppl who run it. You will never know what it means to me. And to the guy, thank you too. Thank you for realizing you made a mistake and apologizing. I think we both learned lessons that night. And thank you for testing my anger. I have been working on it lately.
(On a positive note: I made a new my first international Facebook friend. So there is a silver lining and some good came out of the whole ordeal. I went away from it happy.)