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Wrapping Things Up #338603
03/10/14 06:28 PM
03/10/14 06:28 PM
Joined: Aug 2010
Posts: 4,010
star*fish Offline OP
Board of Directors
star*fish  Offline OP
Board of Directors
Joined: Aug 2010
Posts: 4,010
All y'all,

I’ve never thought of MA as “my baby”, and I haven’t “run” it that way either. In fact *I* don’t run MA in the sense that I make all the decisions or have the final say so as a manager would. I have one vote, because MA is run by a “board” and each one of us brings different skills to the table. Yes, I have put my heart into this forum, but I became a part of building it because I wanted it to be a place that belonged to everyone where everyone could have an opportunity to contribute.


Some people know the history of MA, but as a reminder...there was a small group of people I had brought together to approach the management of another forum. Our intervention there didn’t work and for a while we talked about building our own forum. We wanted a forum that had the look and feel of a serious site and not the kind of free option available, but that seemed like a daunting undertaking…so mostly we just talked about it.


Then one day…LovingAnyway sent me an email saying “I did it!” “You did what?” I asked. “I bought a year of hosting”. A lot of time had passed since we’d left the other forum and I hadn’t thought about building a new one in a long time. It caught me really off guard. I asked her why she did it, and I’ll never forget this…she said “I did it for you.” With a little more enthusiasm from LA, I agreed to buy the UBB software.


From the beginning, neither of us wanted to run MA, because neither of us wanted a forum that had one person in a position of so much power that it could be abused. We decided immediately, that MA would be managed by a board of people who brought more to the table than one person would ever be able to. The first thing we needed was technical support. The only person I knew who was capable of helping with that end of things was AR. She and I had helped Penny put together her forum and had remained friends over the years. She wasn’t involved in forums at all at that time, but I told her what we were trying to do and she agreed to come on board. Without her…there would be no board.


LA had financial experience, I have always been the creative/ idea person, AR was the techie. From there we looked for people with business experience and a commitment to saving marriages. We were lucky to find Mark, Steadfast, Gladstone, Larry and eventually SFB and RHW. We were blessed to find guys who had not only extensive business experience, technical expertise, tax experience, but also experience with non-profits. None of us had the time or experience to do everything needed, but we felt as though together it was a great team.

However, in order to incorporate…we had to assign titles even if in the management of the forum they didn’t mean much. As the organizer and idea person, I was elected to have the title nobody wanted: President. If it failed…nobody wanted their name at the top of the list, and if anybody came after us from the other forum, nobody wanted to be in the cross hairs. Another theory is that people thought I was confident (or stupid ) enough to withstand the inevitable attacks on my character. I half think that everyone else thought if they took a lesser title it would be easier to slip away unnoticed if it got to be too much. So somebody had to be willing to put their name on the line…and that ended up being me.


Now I may have never worked in the corporate world, but I have had extensive experience in organization, diplomacy, teaching, non-profits and various aspects of forum construction. My biggest asset has always been my creativity and vision, and that’s why I was able to convince people to help me do this. Whether anyone thinks that “good enough” or not, you know…I can’t worry about that.


It’s a hard way to run a “business”, but I guess we were looking for something closer to a co-op. First of all, it requires time that none of us really have, but divided we felt would could accomplish. Throughout the establishment of the forum, all of us have reached rough spots in our lives where other board members had to step in and do double duty. I’m not surprised that things have occasionally fallen through the cracks, but I am confused that it surprises our membership. Our lives are just like yours. Think about how crazy your life is….now imagine adding the management of this forum to it. And it’s growing. I understand the desire to have a well-run forum where everything runs like clockwork, but because none of us make a salary….we have to tend to our real life obligations first. MA may need a salaried manager who has time to chase down all the details and every complaint, but aside from the fact that we can’t afford it, we’d also be giving somebody absolute control to shape the board culture. Maybe the new “grievance committee” you guys are suggesting may help to bring issues to the board’s attention before people get too upset about it. That would be a good thing.


Questions about LovingAnyway were brought up. Yes, LA left, and nobody misses her more than I do. I wanted to give people an opportunity to say goodbye (and beg her to stay), but she didn’t want that. I know that she had pressing issues in her real life that needed her attention. Any other reasons I could suggest would be pure conjecture…and she wouldn’t want that. However, I know she also wouldn’t want anyone thinking that they disappointed her or were the cause of her leaving. She keeps in touch with a couple of people and it sounds as though she’s doing well.


Here’s some information about the “Contributors Forum”, because it been the focus of a lot of criticism. One of the board members who is gone now (Larry) really thought this would be a good way to encourage donations. It was supposed to give people some exclusive (though probably not especially interesting) facts about the forum. Remember how he used to put those “metric” announcements up. They made me really uncomfortable, and I thought they’d encourage board wars…so I liked the idea of having a place off the announcement board for those to go. Also, when we started getting more members and facebook hits...people started accusing us of “padding” or buying supporters. I figured the contributors forum could be a safe place where if members wanted to talk about how well they thought MA was doing…they could.


The problem of course is that once Larry left, it was put on the back burner and so many bigger issues arose….and kept arising pushing it off of the agenda. So when a situation like Shocked’s occurred where he donated and got entrance, then went through a series of moderated incidents where he lost access for a while, when he came back….one of the little boxes (and that forum box is not grouped with most of them) didn’t get checked in the area where we have to manually put in his permissions. That’s the point where stuff got really messy. Because Shocked was already angry about other things, I think (but don’t know) that rather than informing us and requesting entry, he thought he could make more of a statement (or protest) by putting it in his sig line. That choice resulted in a couple of things. It resulted in other members rallying to his cause and it created an adversarial relationship between him and the management. I think it is important to note that bringing the oversight to our attention by that means, was not for the purpose of gaining entry, but for the purpose of protest. He already knew there wasn’t much in there…so it was always about criticizing the management. Hence, while some of you guys might think just letting him into that forum would have solved the problem and saved a valuable member relationship…I highly doubt it would have changed his dissatisfaction with the forum.


After taking so much heat on the other thread about what a terrible manager I am and how poorly I treated Shocked, even when I said “Ok, I could have handled that better” and offered to either refund his money or give him entrance…no one even noticed. The arguments went on as though I had said nothing…which to me shows the same thing…resolving that issue was never the real focus.


As I said on the other thread….I have no freedom to defend some of the accusations you guys make, because I can’t reveal privileged information and I’m being judged at a different standard the rest of you. If y’all get snarky, you’re understandably frustrated. If I get snarky…I’m a crummy manager. Aeri suggested that maybe one of the other board members might have more business experience, but their experience is already a part of the group management structure we use already. She mentioned that we do things like choosing moderators “backwards”. But you know, I see many businesses that go about replacing staff in the same way we do. First, they look within their group to see if anybody might be well suited for the job. If nobody fits the bill, they might put an ad in the paper, let people apply and choose from that pool of people. And finally sometimes, they hire headhunters to screen people or go out and recruit people who they think would fit into their organization. Because let’s face it, the folks you work with become very important in your life, and you need to know they’ll work well with the other people already on board.


With moderators this is especially true. I was sincere when I said that barely anyone has ever volunteered or shown any interest in being a moderator. When we need to fill a spot, the first thing we do is ask the moderators if they see other people that possess the time and temperament to make a good moderator. I suppose we could announce we are looking for moderators and see who raises their hands, but nobody wants to tell a volunteer that they aren’t right for the job. It’s not like a paid position where you can say “you don’t have enough experience” or “the other candidate has more qualifications”. This is about whether a person has the confidence and personality to withstand being in the hot seat, possibly rule against their friends, curb their emotions, hasn’t had a history of getting cross-threaded with the mods already. This is also a situation where you can crush or anger someone if you don’t think they’re right the job. Out in the business world, applicants don’t “expect” to get a job just because they ask for it, but volunteers do.


So aeri…I do respect your suggestions, even your criticisms, but I do also believe we might be looking at a different dynamic in dealing with volunteers rather than employees. And yes, your name has come up several times. I, and others have nominated you several times, and you’ve been on the short list of people we thought would make good moderator. A while back when we needed somebody, it was also about the same time that the whole MW thing happened. You were very vocal about your criticisms at that time, and we decided you were probably not going to be interested even if we believed you could overcome your reservations and disenchantment with MA. We had a natural worry about bringing people into the administration who might be more interested in our demise. We thought we’d wait until things settled a little and then see who reinvested in MA.


It hasn’t taken management forever to see the problem with hardline advice. We saw the problem way back when Guchi, Allen and Robx were still around. I’m not sure if most of you know this…but the EIE forum was my idea. I did envision it as a place where the guys (and gals who like to crank up the rhetoric) could use guy-speak/hardline advice to motivate people and give them the push to stop being taken advantage of. I think even less people know that my choice for moderator was medc. My only request from him was to please stay out of trouble with the mods long enough for me to try and get the rest of the board members to consider why I thought he’d be a good candidate. It didn’t happen that way. Maybe I took too long. Maybe he got too frustrated. But by the time we were ready to launch the forum, the hardliners were already rethinking the benefit of having that kind of forum.


They were worried that it was really an underhanded way to “contain” their advice….corner them into a place on the forum….limit their participation. They didn’t want the “rescuers” to be allowed to come and disrupt the tougher advice, but they didn’t want the tough advice to be limited to one forum. We weren’t trying to limit tough advice to one forum. We were trying to put the toughest advice in a place where more sensitive people would not be free to intervene if posters had willing chosen to participate in a forum they knew ahead of time was for that purpose. Then some of the board members started having huge reservations saying…”see, it won’t solve anything”. It seemed as though the hardliners didn’t want their advice interfered with, but they still wanted the freedom to undercut the “coddlers”. In the end it didn’t materialize in the way I had hoped. What’s interesting, is that many of the current suggestions sound similar to the idea I had to begin with.


In any case y’all….I need to wrap this up. I’ll be around for a few more days, but I won’t be joining any discussions, or defending against any new accusations or corrections. Don’t be thinking you hurt my feelings or some such nonsense, there’s just no way to protect myself without throwing privacy out of the window…and I won’t do it. I don’t believe that replacing me is the answer. In fact, I think I brought many unique and wonderful things to this forum….but I know nobody is irreplaceable and as long as y’all have it in your mind that I’m the problem, sticking around will only make me a bigger target. I hold no grudges, and have no regrets. I know with all that I am that I conducted myself in an ethical way…the same way I live. If MA can move on without LA, it can certainly move on without me. This is not some drama-queen ploy to get folks to beg me to stay. I am really ready.


Consider this my resignation and I want you all to know it has been a privilege.

star*fish
Robin Husband


"Yes, I'll have the love combo, open faced with a side of respect and large a glass of forgiveness, easy on the ice please--my brother
Re: Wrapping Things Up [Re: star*fish] #338612
03/10/14 06:35 PM
03/10/14 06:35 PM
Joined: Feb 2011
Posts: 2,681
Carolina Blue Heaven
P
peppermint Offline
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peppermint  Offline
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Carolina Blue Heaven
Star,

I absolutely respect your decision, though it makes me sad.

Thank you for all you did for me, and for this site.

Best wishes,

Patty

Re: Wrapping Things Up [Re: star*fish] #338613
03/10/14 06:41 PM
03/10/14 06:41 PM
Joined: Sep 2010
Posts: 3,611
wiser_now Offline
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wiser_now  Offline
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Joined: Sep 2010
Posts: 3,611
I have been in church splits and here's what happens.. they split. Some stay...some go with.

I said in the other thread that you are the heart and soul of this place. You are.

The loss of you matters to me.

Not here to beg or fix. Here to support you and let you know I care.


A happy marriage is a long conversation which always seems too short. --Andre Maurois

Re: Wrapping Things Up [Re: peppermint] #338615
03/10/14 06:44 PM
03/10/14 06:44 PM
Joined: Aug 2010
Posts: 7,565
New Zealand
Lil Offline

Member
Lil  Offline

Member
Joined: Aug 2010
Posts: 7,565
New Zealand
Star,

I am sorry to see you go. It seems like the old guard is slipping away. Take care. Xxx


AKA Lildoggie

Just found out about your spouses affair?
Infidelity Guide For The Betrayed Spouse


Re: Wrapping Things Up [Re: peppermint] #338617
03/10/14 06:57 PM
03/10/14 06:57 PM
Joined: Aug 2010
Posts: 9,007
The Farm
Jayne241 Offline
Member
Jayne241  Offline
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Joined: Aug 2010
Posts: 9,007
The Farm
Star (using your screen name just in case you change your mind about posting your RL name), I really don't think anyone was saying you personally were the problem. No one is perfect, and a wise person welcomes constructive criticism. I think everyone wanted to help, not to remove you.

FWIW, everyone, I was removed as mod by the BoD (not by any individual member, and the message was not even delivered by star*fish IIRC) because I was venting frustrations on another forum. I never betrayed any confidences or used any confidential information, but I did not maintain the appearance of propriety (if that is the right word) and opened MA up to complaints about me. This is what star*fish wouldn't say in her defense out of respect for my privacy, and I admire and appreciate that. I almost posted this on the other thread, but by then it had moved on and I didn't want to continue the TJ. I offered via PM to post elsewhere but star*fish never told me where she would like me to post. I was waiting for her to post somewhere as she said she was going to. I am saddened that the post I was waiting for turned out to be her resignation.

Please reconsider, star*fish.

I know your post wasn't a call for folks to ask you to,reconsider, but... Please reconsider.


42.
Re: Wrapping Things Up [Re: Jayne241] #338619
03/10/14 07:07 PM
03/10/14 07:07 PM
Joined: Aug 2010
Posts: 9,007
The Farm
Jayne241 Offline
Member
Jayne241  Offline
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Joined: Aug 2010
Posts: 9,007
The Farm
And star, I noticed what you posted about remedying the situation, and appreciated it. I'm sorry I didn't post an acknowledgment.


42.
Re: Wrapping Things Up [Re: Jayne241] #338624
03/10/14 07:19 PM
03/10/14 07:19 PM
Joined: Nov 2010
Posts: 9,381
TX
CajunRose Offline
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CajunRose  Offline
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Joined: Nov 2010
Posts: 9,381
TX
Star, I'm sorry you've become frustrated enough to quit.

I hope that you will be able to see that most of the criticism was not directed at you personally, and that you will rethink your decision.


Current spouse: Night. D10, D9, S7

About me

You can't direct the wind, but you can adjust your sails.

http://www.divorcedmomfinances.com
Re: Wrapping Things Up [Re: star*fish] #338632
03/10/14 07:30 PM
03/10/14 07:30 PM
Joined: Sep 2010
Posts: 5,222
L
LivingWell Offline
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LivingWell  Offline
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L
Joined: Sep 2010
Posts: 5,222
Originally Posted By: star*fish
I don’t believe that replacing me is the answer.

For what it's worth, I don't either.

Star, I'm angry and disappointed. To me, this is just one more example of the problem with not going meta when some things are brought up (sometimes as bait). In this case, you're only hearing the negative and none of the positive.

Silenced. Our president silenced. Not something that I ever thought that I would see.

I'm angry with you, Star. And disappointed.

And I love you and appreciate you. I hope that you will keep in touch. hug

Re: Wrapping Things Up [Re: LivingWell] #338641
03/10/14 07:54 PM
03/10/14 07:54 PM
Joined: Aug 2010
Posts: 5,690
SoCal
Chrysalis Offline
Global Moderator
Chrysalis  Offline
Global Moderator
Joined: Aug 2010
Posts: 5,690
SoCal
I'm going to remove some unpleasant discussion to the thunderdome. Please don't continue that kind of thing on this thread.


Chrysalis
Re: Wrapping Things Up [Re: Chrysalis] #338646
03/10/14 07:59 PM
03/10/14 07:59 PM
Joined: Sep 2010
Posts: 2,918
Canada
*
*~aeri~* Offline
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*~aeri~*  Offline
Member
*
Joined: Sep 2010
Posts: 2,918
Canada
Star, this wasn't PERSONAL. I'm not sure if you saw where I mentioned that in the original thread.

I NEVER wanted to mention my feelings on how the site was run because I was afraid that you'd take it personally. I felt that since Mark was addressing a situation that I felt was an issue from the top down, I thought I'd put it out there.

Unfortunately, now I look like a villain. That's really sad because I began my post on the other thread telling everyone how much you've helped me over the years.

Do you know HOW I found this thread? Poet told everyone over on the "grievance" thread that she wouldn't nominate me to be part of the committee because I was part of "Koffee"...(I still don't know what the HELL that is). She made no bones about sending me HERE so I could see that you were "outing" me. So, I guess I wasn't too far wrong when I said that the problems on MA start from the top, down?

Now, I would like to make ONE clarification. (Mods, please do as you wish with this, but I believe it's within the TOS)

You mentioned this:

Quote:
A while back when we needed somebody, it was also about the same time that the whole MW thing happened. You were very vocal about your criticisms at that time, and we decided you were probably not going to be interested even if we believed you could overcome your reservations and disenchantment with MA. We had a natural worry about bringing people into the administration who might be more interested in our demise. We thought we’d wait until things settled a little and then see who reinvested in MA.
Emphasis, mine.

Is this what Poet is talking about? Me being a part of "Koffee"?

I have no affiliation with any "KOFFEE" group/person, other than being a member of MW and I'm not sure if there is a connection there, even.

I don't recall EVER mentioning disenchantment with this site on here or at MW. I'd really like to know where I posted these things because I have no idea..,..

I'm not going to mention our private exchange from (last year? Few months ago?) but are you SURE you're remembering this correctly? I have NO affiliation with MEDC and I never have...just in case you've forgotten...again.





Last edited by *~aeri~*; 03/10/14 08:46 PM.

Married my best friend 7/23/05



Re: Wrapping Things Up [Re: *~aeri~*] #338647
03/10/14 08:00 PM
03/10/14 08:00 PM
Joined: Aug 2010
Posts: 5,690
SoCal
Chrysalis Offline
Global Moderator
Chrysalis  Offline
Global Moderator
Joined: Aug 2010
Posts: 5,690
SoCal
Maybe you should PM a mod or two to vet what you would like to say here, and we can suggest whether here or the TD would be more appropriate.


Chrysalis
Re: Wrapping Things Up [Re: Chrysalis] #338648
03/10/14 08:02 PM
03/10/14 08:02 PM
Joined: Sep 2010
Posts: 4,459
Pacific NW
Kittycat Offline
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Kittycat  Offline
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Joined: Sep 2010
Posts: 4,459
Pacific NW
Star I was not insulting you nor your character. I had a few beefs with the forum. I guess that is all I can say, believe it or not....


Formerly Baba, Stellakat, Bubbles

"Please remember that what I say here in this post is ONLY my opinion and it is not meant to offend in any way!"
Re: Wrapping Things Up [Re: Kittycat] #338654
03/10/14 08:14 PM
03/10/14 08:14 PM
Joined: May 2011
Posts: 2,344
O
ohmy_marie Offline
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ohmy_marie  Offline
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O
Joined: May 2011
Posts: 2,344
“There is no real ending. It’s just the place where you stop the story.” -- Frank Herbert

Star,

May the new story in your life bring you much joy and happiness.

You will always and forever be my hero. YOU.

Love, marie


may came home with a smooth round stone
as small as a world and as large as alone. -- e. e. cummings
Re: Wrapping Things Up [Re: ohmy_marie] #338717
03/11/14 03:43 AM
03/11/14 03:43 AM
Joined: Aug 2010
Posts: 8,804
NewEveryDay Offline
Advocate
NewEveryDay  Offline
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Joined: Aug 2010
Posts: 8,804
Star, thanks for all you've done to make a second home here. And thanks to LovingAnyway in case she reads here. I know none of this was easy, but you've built something very special here that I believe will endure. I know I felt more comfortable posting more once I stepped down as moderator, and I hope you will continue to reach out to those struggling on their worst days.

I had stepped down a while back because I felt like I had accomplished something really good and was ready to step away from the computer screen so much. So I am going to look at it like that, star, taking time to be with your loved ones and engaged in your off-screen life. Thanks again for everything!


"I have everything I need." and "I am exactly where I am supposed to be." ~Louise Hays
Re: Wrapping Things Up [Re: NewEveryDay] #338783
03/11/14 01:46 PM
03/11/14 01:46 PM
Joined: Aug 2010
Posts: 4,010
star*fish Offline OP
Board of Directors
star*fish  Offline OP
Board of Directors
Joined: Aug 2010
Posts: 4,010
Thanks for the well wishes and support.

Believe me when I say I am not offended or hurt by anything said on these forums, and there is absolutely no blame to place. I, and I alone, am completely responsible for my own actions.

A change in leadership may be just be what the doctor ordered...for me as well as the forum. I know that sometimes moving out of the way is the best way to create progress. This could be a good thing. The forum is going to be fine, maybe better.

There is a transition to be made, and it'll take a little time, so I'm not going to suddenly disappear. I may even take the time to help a newbie or two.


"Yes, I'll have the love combo, open faced with a side of respect and large a glass of forgiveness, easy on the ice please--my brother
Re: Wrapping Things Up [Re: NewEveryDay] #338788
03/11/14 01:54 PM
03/11/14 01:54 PM
Joined: Aug 2010
Posts: 1,737
Vittoria Offline
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Vittoria  Offline
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Posts: 1,737
Star, I don't believe you made your decision lightly or on some emotional whim. You just don't seem like that type of person to me, so I respect the change to your life you've made. And it will be a change, a positive one for you and your family and friends. Enjoy!

I hope you can appreciate what you've accomplished this far, sure, not by yourself but you started the seed (with the help of LA). Bumps are inevitable and everything is a learning curve for all of us.

Take good care. smile


26 yrs. married
There's nothing more powerful than a woman with an open heart ......
Re: Wrapping Things Up [Re: star*fish] #338807
03/11/14 03:18 PM
03/11/14 03:18 PM
Joined: Aug 2010
Posts: 3,535
Ace Offline
Advocate
Ace  Offline
Advocate
Joined: Aug 2010
Posts: 3,535
Originally Posted By: star*fish

There is a transition to be made, and it'll take a little time, so I'm not going to suddenly disappear. I may even take the time to help a newbie or two.


I'm sooooooo glad to hear this. Excited for your new chapter. If you can take a gander, we do have a relatively new member PSG (Portsidegirl) who asked for tough love thoughts on the EiE forum. As of yesterday only NG and I had posted to her and now I think B has weighed in. I know you've been in her shoes and when you have a chance I'm sure she'd appreciate your input.

Hugs,
Ace


We're overcoming decades of marital dysfunction including abuse, passive aggression, gas-lighting & infidelity (both of us).

Our Weird and Ongoing Story
Re: Wrapping Things Up [Re: Ace] #338818
03/11/14 03:40 PM
03/11/14 03:40 PM
Joined: Sep 2010
Posts: 1,747
T
Telly Offline
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Telly  Offline
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T
Joined: Sep 2010
Posts: 1,747
I am so very sad to see you go, Star*fish....

I hope u do post continue to newbies (and oldies). Your advice has been truly valuable to many many of us...

And I miss LA and Larry and just learning and everyone who has posted and gone.

Thank u for everything you've done...


Married 13 years
D10
D5
Re: Wrapping Things Up [Re: Telly] #339272
03/12/14 07:25 PM
03/12/14 07:25 PM
Joined: Jan 2011
Posts: 7,052
holdingontoit Offline
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holdingontoit  Offline
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Joined: Jan 2011
Posts: 7,052
Thank you for being part of my life for 12 years, even though we have never met and rarely spoke and haven't posted to one another in a long time. The people who interact with you much more often than I do think they will miss you the most. They are wrong. Never fool yourself into thinking the puppy misses the human less than the other way around.


Solutions? There are none. There are decisions.
Re: Wrapping Things Up [Re: holdingontoit] #339522
03/13/14 05:02 PM
03/13/14 05:02 PM
Joined: Oct 2013
Posts: 58
Mockingbird Offline
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Mockingbird  Offline
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Posts: 58
Star, thank you for reaching out by PM to a newbie who was afraid her WH would see her posts in an open forum and use them to manipulate her. Thank you for riding in with the rest of the cavalry. Thank you for helping me understand "the fear" and stop being afraid. I will be forever grateful.


"We can't always have our druthers." - Harper Lee, To Kill A Mockingbird

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Questions & Answers About Marriage---responses from 7-10 year old kids4
seeing new members on mobile version5
Return of the Goddess31
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