People who equate truth with fact are missing the point.

Faith and hope and joy and some other things I don’t talk about enough…

Alright, I’m not given especially to sappiness. I’m a practical person. I mean, I’m a highly emotional person; I’m just very selective about how I express that.

BUT… can you imagine this? You have a kid, who has problems. Big problems. Problems that cause people to call you a bad parent. Problems that require you to re-create your whole life around them. Problems that demand extensive treatment that’s virtually impossible to access. Problems that make you doubt your every decision, your very adequacy as a human being. Problems that bring YOUR mental health to the breaking point.

And then imagine this: you get caught up in a Twitter storm because a kind almost-stranger decided that a Twitter storm was a good idea. And the Twitter storm grew. And some more kind strangers paid attention, and sent kind words. And then another kind stranger offered to help you raise money. And people tweeted, and wrote some blog posts, and came pouring out of the woodwork to say hey, we didn’t know you or your kid with problems, but now we do and we care. We give a shit. And then the kind strangers aren’t really strangers anymore.

That kind of thing? It’s the kind of thing that could make a person feel more at home in the world, like she was finding the purpose she lost.

I mean, can you imagine?
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9 comments to Faith and hope and joy and some other things I don’t talk about enough…

  • So glad twitter could help bring about good. I’m glad to have found you through my “tweepl” and I’m so happy to see that a kind company was able to do more than offer kind words! So wonderful to see.

  • I know things happen for a reason in life. It is no mistake that I came across your article in Brain Child. I barely know you and yet feel connected. Thank you for being open, honest, and willing to share bits of your life with us.

  • I have a newfound respect for the power of Twitter. And for almost-strangers. It is so heartwarming to see this kind of good working in the world.

  • I am new to your blog, sent here by CaneWife, as my daughter has issues much like your son. SHe was wrongfully diagnosed as ODD with ADHD, when it is really a Mood Disorder (NON) with ADHD that she has. The past 2 years have been a rollercoaster, and lately it has been especially difficult as we try this med and that med all in an attempt to find the right med. I can totally relate to many statements you are making here, especially the bad parent part. I’m thankful Canewife sent your link to me.

  • Oh, yes, I have a new found respect for Twitter, too! Drama Mama, I’m sorry you’ve been on the roller coaster. 🙁 It’s never easy, and finding the right meds – yeesh! I’m so jealous of the people who hit on the right med or combo right away. Hang in there.

  • I am just now catching up… this breaks my heart and melts it at the same time. Online community never stops to amaze me.

  • Anonymous

    Thank you for this. I came across the post from Jezebel and wanted to thank you for taking the time and courage to write this. As a kid, I was both teased and a bully, and reading this story reminded me of both instances. Luckily, when I was doing the bullying, among the other group of friends, we had adults come in, discuss the situation and force us to look at the person we were hurting. Sadly, I wasn’t as lucky, but Im assuming this is why I bullied a few years later. Either way, Im glad to know that you were able to find some sort of closure and get your voice heard, even if it was 30 years later.

  • Anonymous

    I wish with all my heart I could agree, but I can’t. I also have a mentally ill child who is now almost 18. I’ve blogged and posted on usenet about him since before he was born and I get almost no positive recognition at all. What I do get is an armload and a boatload of bullying by a-list bloggers who spread the hate with pride. It makes your 6th grade experience look positively glorious because it’s been going on for years and years and grows every year as more people want to befriend them and do so by hating on me publically. I would tell you not to trust the internet at all, especially the mommybloggers, but you’re the “in” cause this week, so people are gonna be nice to you and raise money for you. Until you do something to irk them and they’ll dump you like a hot potato.

    The mommy bloggers are where junior high bullies come when they are all grown up. They don’t change at all, they just laugh at the peons behind their backs and blame people for their bullying. It’s always MY fault, even when they know damn well it isn’t. And they write these ‘poor me’ posts that imply who is saying mean things to them, always implicating the same few, including me. But it’s never me and I’m sick to death of all of them. I don’t like them, I don’t respect them, I won’t tolerate them, I don’t read their drivel, and I won’t spend one penny of my money buying tickets to their lame-ass conferences to hear them “speak”. Because I’ve been bullied enough and I won’t play ball anymore. I’m smarter, stronger, and more adept than any of them and I don’t need a bunch of middle-class white women playing liberal when they don’t even know what the word means telling me what’s wrong with me. I won’t be bullied. Period. And neither should you or any other mother raising an emotionally fragile child. Being polite no longer matters when people impose on your parenting. Tell them to fuck off and do it with pride. If more of us did that, we would shut the mothers up for good. Which would do the internet a whole buncha good.

  • @Anonymous – I’m very sorry you have been so hurt. Rest assured, though, that I have no illusions. Online community has limits, as all communities do.

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