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Gentle Reminder: Please Avoid Excess Drama

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This is a gentle reminder to forum members, especially new ones, to make an effort to avoid excess drama in posts -- because forum trolls delight in over-the-top expressions.  And we ban forum trolls. For life.


It is especially tricky to avoid drama when we are dealing with the effects of serious illness, such as scleroderma, and when we are used to letting it all hang out on social media.


Our moderators look for "drama signs" such as exaggerations:  horrible heartburn, extreme pain, insinuated suicide threats, CAPITAL LETTERS (WHICH IS SHOUTING ON THE INTERNET), or a general tone of being more emotional than logical.


Clearly, there are times when illness is disturbing, to say the least, and times when we feel unable to cope. Those times, we need to call our primary doctor or mental health professional right away. We shouldn't be posting on social media then, because social media is not able to provide the counseling or medication that we may need.


Our forums aren't suited for every trouble that arises with chronic illness (or its diagnosis).  Many of us, including me, have turned to local counselors to help us adjust to the many dismaying demands of chronic illness.


If you tend to be verbally overly-expressive, rather than risk being wrongly pegged as "just another hysterical troll", we recommend composing a forum post offline and saving it. Reread it a bit later. Look for words like "horrible", "worst", "PAIN", "unbelievable PAIN", etc.  Can you tone it down a bit yet still get your message across?


Maybe you have "very bad heartburn" instead of the "worst heartburn ever".  Or you have "chronic joint pain".


If you don't self-edit, our moderators may freely edit the drama out of your message -- and they also have the power to ban forever, based on just too much hype.


Real patients tend to be factual, precise, and don't need to exaggerate anything. 


Our community -- and your care providers -- are far more likely to take your issues a lot more seriously if you try to stick to the unembroidered, unexaggerated facts of the matter.


And please ask your primary care doctor for a referral for counseling if you find that you are over-reacting emotionally to illness issues.  Not being able to tone down a forums post would be a symptom of that.  It's perfectly normal for us to experience depression and anxiety along with illness, and the sooner we deal with those issues, the better.


Thank you for being part of our community, and for doing your best to understand and follow our guidelines. We greatly appreciate it!



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