Monday, November 29, 2010

I Finally Got Mail. I Wish I Hadn't.

You may be familiar with Barbara Curtis at mommylife.net. I've done one post about her in hell, and we've talked about her a couple of times at freejinger (for all your fundy discussion needs). She makes a living with her website, as in its income is so important to her that even though she felt amazon was supporting pedophiles (she willingly joined the Catholic Church, btw), she still had to keep her amazon affiliation to pay the bills (the Catholic Church has a justification for that. Shocked, shocked I am!)

To reiterate, the person who sent me this email is a professional blogger. A person who willingly, knowingly and for recompense puts their opinions, thoughts and beliefs on the internet for the world to see.

From: Barbara Curtis
Date: November 26, 2010 2:17:48 PM EST
To: personalfailure@ymail.com
Subject: Loving you no matter what

It's like the title to a bad 80s power ballad.

It is really sad that you are not content to hate me but try to stir up others' hatred. Sad for my daughter 17-year-old Maddy who found this What kind of hatred drives this?

So . . . Barbara writes articles, of her own free will, to be posted on the internet, on controversial subjects. Then she is both shocked and appalled- not to mention all think of the children!- when someone publicly disagrees with her. On a small message board.

On the subject of hatred, what Barbara found was my, and others', reactions to two articles she wrote. (I found the links to these articles on her website, btw. Keep that in mind.) One stated that if you use birth control, you are sending your children the message that you hate them. The other stated that postpartum psychosis is not an excuse for any behavior and women like Andrea Yates should be tarred and feathered in the public square. In order to make the children feel safer, you see.

I consider those opinions hateful. YMMV, but that's the nature of the internet, Barbara. People disagree and do so publicly. If you can't handle that, if your daughter can't handle that, then that's your responsibility, not mine. I didn't make you write those things and I didn't make you post them on the internet. Especially considering that you posted, on the internet, a personal matter regarding your daughter in which you called her a bad mother. That was something. Something nobody needed to see.

I would really like to heal this situation. I've never tried to cause you harm and just because we disagree on issues shouldn't be enough to cause this kind of hate speech.

Hate speech? I disagreed with you, I didn't call for genocide. Get a grip.

Could Maddy and I come visit you in PA? Could you come visit us? We are really not far away from each other.

Yes, why don't I give the random internet lady my home address? Nothing could go wrong there. I should probably also give her my social security number, date of birth and mother's maiden name. Or, I could spend hundreds of dollars I don't have to visit random internet lady. That's a valuable use of my time- concerning a post on a message board. That totally makes sense. Heck, I take vacation days every time someone on the internet disagrees with me. I sincerely hope no one in North Korea disagrees with me, I have no idea how I'd get across the border.

Reading your blog entries - admittedly I haven't read many - I see you think of yourself as not hating, yet this is a case where actions speak louder than words.

I'm so hateful! Meh, I'd feel worse (or, you know, anything) if this weren't coming from a birther who posted a personal family matter for the world to see.

I would never try to harm you in this way.

I disagreed with you, I didn't set your house on fire.

In fact I feel great fondness for you as a couple of your posts remind me of myself when I was a young counterculture person working in corporate America (AT&T in Washington DC in the late 60s). I too hate inauthenticity and power relationships. But whereas I used to hate people who exemplified those things, I've learned as I've grown older - and since having children with disabilities (who've truly taken me into another dimension) that all of us are disabled in some way, limited by our life experiences, hurts, etc

Um, okay. We're all disabled. We all have trouble opening store doors and getting up a flight of stairs. We all have chronic pain and . . . you know what, no we don't. I agree that experiences shape and change us, but it's not the same thing as disability. "I used to be a hippy like you!" isn't really effective when the intended audience does not consider themselves counter cultural, btw.

I don't hate anyone and I certainly wouldn't hurt someone as you have tried to hurt me - and my children.

I disagreed with you on the internet. You'd think I poisoned her well the way she's going on about it. Seriously, read that sentence again. Now try to imagine any way that applies to publicly disagreeing with an article on the internet.

In fact, I've made it my life's work to try to help moms in practical and spiritual ways as they raise their children.

Good for you. I'm not sure how "birth control is hateful" and "postpartum psychosis is a poor excuse" is helpful, but whatever.

What you don't see is the hundreds of emails I receive.

What I can't figure out is why you have time to email me, let alone visit me. Hundreds of emails, four children with special needs at home and endless time to email and potentially drive hundreds of miles to meet the person who dared to disagree with you. Unbelievable. I'd say to get a life, but as far as I can tell, she should already have one. A rather engrossing life, in fact.

I know I'm far from perfect, but having come from the background I do (poverty, foster homes, abuse) and having spent my early adulthood in complete self-centeredness and hurting others, I know that it is possible to change. And I know from my adult kids that anyone can become a good mother. Not perfect, but trying each day to do a better job.

I'm not sure what this has to do with anything. I didn't call you a bad mother. I called you out on calling other people bad mothers.

Why would you attack someone like that? Why would you dig up a 10 year old article and try to stir up slander and viciousness?

Honey, it's slander if it isn't true. You wrote those words. You linked to those words.

I think you need to check your own authenticity.

BWAHAHAHAHAHA! I need to check myself before I wreck myself!

Life is truly about making mistakes and growing from them. Perhaps you can shift your paradigm, open your mind, think outside the box - and go for hope and change - the real hope and change that comes from growing and learning to love rather than hate.

I think you need to calm down. Although if you getting worked up always leads to a mashup of Dilbert, The Matrix and Office Space, I may well keep "provoking" you. With my disagreements. On the internet. Maybe it ought to be a rule that everyone has to start out at 4chan before entering the rest of the internet. It would give people perspective.

Again, I have never done anything to harm you and never would.

Me neither. See, we do have something in common.

As I have told you, and as I discussed on my blog earlier this week,

In which she called me a troll. Yes, a blog post, a few comments and a discussion on a message board are trolling in Barbaraland. I don't suppose there's any way to get Dennis over to mommylife, is there?

I actually feel great love towards you,

No, you don't. You don't know me. Love is a special, beautiful thing and to say that you feel it for some random person you've never met cheapens it terribly.

pray for you and am blessed whenever I see your comments. You have certainly brought out the best in me. I would truly love to meet you and be an example of healing rather than hurt.

Dear science, that it is some weapons grade passive aggression right there.

Look, Barbara, this is the internet. People disagree. It's not hatefulness, it's not trolling, it's not anything but an exuberant use of free speech. Get over it, hug your kids and move on.


9 comments:

  1. Lol. Maybe she should get trolled for the reals.

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  2. I, um... what? Seriously? She thinks you hate her? And she thinks you're trying to harm her? And she wants to meet you in person, in order to "heal this situation"? What situation? And who talks like that?

    Gaaaaaaaaah...

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  3. What an incredibly stupid woman! How does she manage to live with such an eggshell ego?

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  4. Why are all the really dumb “mommy-bloggers” so oblivious to their inanity? You’d think you posted her personal info on 4chan or something, by the way she sees you.

    I would heartily encourage sending Internet newbies to 4chan for a good breaking-in, BTW.

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  5. So, she tells you that she loves you and that she's willing to meet you in person?

    It's almost like she's the one who's acting out of line and crossing some pretty creepy boundaries.

    I'm not familiar with this blogger, but I do wonder if she's new or hasn't viewed much criticism of her articles before. It just seems common for people who are really new at the internets to take criticism really personally and interpret it as hatred, a violation of their free speech, genocide, etc. Or, maybe it can be explained by the Christian Persecution Complex.

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  6. That's the thing, mommylife.net was one of the original mommy blogs. She didn't get political until the 2008 election. Prior to that, it was mostly Montessori advice and day-in-the-life adventures of raising a large family and 4 special needs children. (I actually did read her backlog. Fortunately, I naturally speed read.)

    And, she converted from evangelical to Catholic in 2007, I believe, and she had to have gotten some serious criticism about that at the time, as the average evangelical considers Catholics to be on par with Satanists. (Though it was interesting to read the comments concerning once saved always saved theology and converting Catholicism. Basically, nobody would admit that OSAS could be broken, but the conversion was unseemly.)

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  7. The thing that's always struck me about people who identify themselves first and foremost as "mommies" is that they tend to operate under the staunch belief that anything said by anyone who's not a Mom is automatically invalid. Like being a Mom somehow imbues a person with a transcendental level of wisdom we lesser mortals will never know.

    Fuck that noise.

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  8. I would be very, very wary of someone who repeatedly says they're not going to hurt you or cause you harm. I reckon it means she wants to pull out your insides and make pie with them.

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  9. that was the most patronizing bit of passive-aggresive trite i've ever read.

    and i've read TONS of the shite, given my psycho family...


    just... wow. WOW. wtf? i even went and read the whole message board [i can't seem to get to her original article, but i don't need to, i guess] and - WHAT? where's the attack? the trolling? the hate? none of that's there - so WHAT exactly is upsetting her? there was NOTHING hurtful, hateful or trolling about what you wrote. [a few other people wrote some stuff that boiled down to "i don't like her writing" but that's STILL not hateful, and is only hurtful if you expect EVERYONE to LOVE EVERYTHING you do, period. which is an insane idea...]

    man, some people's parents, right? [Who's Mandy and why should i care about anything except her unfortunate luck to have a mother who is THAT PA?]

    ReplyDelete

Comments are for you guys, not for me. Say what you will. Don't feel compelled to stay on topic, I enjoy it when comments enter Tangentville or veer off into Non Sequitur Town. Just keep it polite, okay?

I am attempting to use blogger's new comment spam feature. If you don't immediately see your comment, it is being held in spam, I will get it out next time I check the filter. Unless you are Dennis Markuze, in which case you're never seeing your comment.

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Forever in Hell by Personal Failure is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.
Based on a work at foreverinhell.blogspot.com.