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Caring


devils daughter
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Since I joined here in January there are people here whom I care a lot about. This seems so surprising, in a way. Who are we to each other but words on an internet screen? Yet I feel closer to some of you than people in my real life.

I am beginning to suspect that some basic feeling for human connection is at work in me and that the time-delayed, text communication prevents (normal, for me) rejection fears and anxieties from getting in the way.

There’s a safety factor, too. It’s not possible to hurt each other much – some, maybe, but the mods do a pretty good job of limiting it.

The notion of a Mental Support Community comes from real human communities, of course. But I wonder if what we are learning to do here, how we are learning to treat each other, and the discovery (sometimes) of our capacity to care, and also to receive caring, isn’t something really remarkably new in the world.

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Thanks so much for sharing your thoughts, DD. :) I'm so glad that being here on the site has been a positive experience for you. This is why we are here. :)

One thing that stands out for me personally is that I am always accepted here. I can be as pink as I feel and gush sentiment and it is met with acceptance. When I'm hurting and struggling my friends are here for me. I have made some wonderful friends here and there are members whom I care deeply about. I still do all of my relationship stuff, though...but this is always a learning experience for me. I'm glad it is not as much of a factor for you here, DD. Maybe, though, you're learning and growing and it simply isn't as much of a factor now. For me, the medium of writing helps me to express myself clearer because I can take my time and express what I really want.

Hurt is always possible when we care and allow some vulnerability. I'm aware of that, and it has happened here, but the benefits greatly outweigh the risks in my opinion. Opening up your heart and caring feels good. It does for me anyhow. I like accessing my gentlest parts and being calming with others. I also think that caring about others helps me to care for myself. I learn from myself while I'm doing it. I learn from all of you.

I'm very grateful for this web site too. Knowing that I am able to make some small difference for someone who is hurting means so much to me. As a friend of mine would say, it feeds my soul.

I'm happy now because I could express more pink. Thanks, DD. :)

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I feel it very similarly :).

I'm glad you shared it, so... now I'll share some minor personal observations I did recently:

- I'm reading a book about group therapy by Y. D. Yalom and it's almost funny to see that the rules and processes he describes there are present also here, in this community, although it's not really a group therapy and has several very specific "features".

- It's strange to me that I can have problems with communication with my friends whome I know for years and we never had fights or serious problems with each other, we just became somehow distant (every one living in a different country for years) - by not communicating "enough". I don't know how close we "should" (want to) be now, I don't know what to share with whome and what not, what help can I offer, ... But I feel that the experiences from this community helped me a bit; although I sometimes wonder how much closer I feel to some members here and how much easier for me is to communicate with them, I also can derive a feeling of... let's say self-confidence from these "on-line" relationships and can convince myself that I am able to use the skills I use here also in my old friendships which seem so... almost "disintegrating" by time and by absence of contact... I'll see (soon?) if this is only my false assumption or it will really be possible... Mostly; it doesn't depend only on me, but also on the friends, so...

(Maybe I should add that... it's sometimes almost "scary" that I feel much stronger caring and "loving" feelings to/for some people here than I can feel to my old friends :o. However, it has a logic; I currently know some of you in more intimate details than them...)

Added later:

I should say that reading the mentioned book, I realize more and more dufferences between a group therapy and a forum like this. It's, obviously, OK, I just wanted to add thi info here so that anybody wouldn't think that I really consider the two so very similar. Yes, there are some commun "features", but... don't worry ;): I see the differences and limits, too!

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