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Good morning from England

Posted by Julie on 9/28/03 at 05:52 (131400)

One of the nice things about living on the other side of the ocean is that when things get exciting on the Social/Support board I miss all the late afternoon and evening posts and can peruse them at my leisure during 'my' morning, which is while you are all sleeping. This I've done this morning and there are some things I'd like to say now.

I'll start with what happened seven months ago. Ed and I became involved in a discussion during the run-up to the war. Others were involved in that discussion too, but in the end it boiled down to a head-to-head between myself and Ed. Mostly as a result of that discussion, I decided not to post here any more. I realised that I had been contributing to an atmosphere that was ruining things for the majority of the community here, and made many uncomfortable and unhappy. Several people made it clear at the time that they wanted their Social/Support board back, and I knew that if I stayed I would continue to get involved in political discussions, and that this would always cause trouble (as Judy has rightly pointed out).So I left.

At the time, Ed, I said that this was why I was leaving, and I said that I hoped you would now realise how damaging such altercations are, and that you would also stop such altercatins and do your part in allowing the board to heal. My leaving made no difference, and over the past seven months the situation has steadily worsened. There have been fewer and fewer posts of a social, friendly nature, while the number of political posts has steadily increased. The political has almost completely drowned out the personal, and people who enjoyed talking to each other and who came here for support and comradeship no longer do.

When I first found heelspurs.com three and a bit years ago, the Social/Support board was humming with friendliness. It had been created by Scott because people who had found they enjoyed talking to each other had started chatting away on the medical boards. He wanted to reserve those boards for their stated purpose, so he created the Social/Support board. This board too had a stated purpose: Social/Support. And it became a solace and comfort to the friends who were already here and who formed its core. It became a place where people, including myself, to my lasting joy, made real friends. And it became a haven for newcomers who arrived almost daily and found in it a place to share their foot woes with people knew from experience what they were going through. That's what 'Support' is, and people found it here. It was a unique, amazing place. A truly supportive place.

In recent months the Social/Support board has become a different place. This is because a few individuals, yourself included, Ed, have been using it as a platform for the dissemination of certain political views. The sheer number and volume of these posts, and sometimes their tone, has succeeded in swamping everything else. It's easy to say 'If you aren't interested/don't like a post you don't have to read it'. But the fact - and I'm surprised hardly anyone has noticed this - is that for a long time there has been little else to read. People who used to enjoy coming here to talk no longer come. They have been drowned out. And there is no doubt in my mind that as I and others have said, new people are put off.

I see what has happened like this. A group of nice people who liked getting together and talking to each other about whatever they wanted to talk about, and who gave great support to new arrivals, have been alienated and their board has been taken away from them. This is not fair. Scott has now decided that political discussions are not the purpose of the Social/Support board, and that it is to be returned to the purpose for which he created it. We should all respect this - not just because 'it's Scott's website' but for the sake of the many people who have lost something they valued, something that was important to them.

Ed, I know that your comments about 'certain people who indulge in personal attacks' are meant mainly for me. But I have never attacked you. I have been truthful with you in telling you how I feel about the way you have used this board. You acknowledged two days ago that one of your purposes here is to spread conservative views. Do you think that that is an appropriate use of a Social/Support board? I don't share or like your political views, but I would feel the same about any individual - liberal (whatever that means), socialist, communist, fascist or animal rights activist - who monopolised the board with his or her own agenda to the point where it pushes everything else aside. This isn't a question of censorship, but of balance. And consideration and good manners. If one or two people's 'free speech' has the clear, obvious effect of alienating others, there is something very wrong.

In more than one of my posts to you, I've said that I respect and admire your medical knowledge and expertise, and the cogency and generosity with which you share it at heelspurs. You have helped people a great deal here, and everyone you have helped is grateful to you. I have learned a lot from you and I'm grateful for that. Your medical contribution is invaluable: no-one could possibly dispute that. But I think you have also contributed to what I am coming to see as the demise of the Social/Support board. That demise, if it happens, will be a very sad thing for many.

So here is a sort of personal analogy, and a personal plea. I am a yoga practitioner, teacher and trainer of teachers of 34 years standing. I too shared my professional expertise here for a long time. Scott felt that what I offered in the way of exercises was useful enough to warrant a permanent link; he provided it and many people have benefited. But if he had decided for reasons of his own that yoga was not an appropriate subject for his website, and had asked me to stop talking about it, I would have stopped. I would have been hurt, but I would have stopped.

Ed, please be gracious now. Stay with heelspurs, and be the good, caring doctor that you are. But find other outlets for politics. There are plenty of them, as others have stated, but only one place for people with sore feet.

All the best to you and everyone,

Julie

Re: Good morning from England

Suzanne D on 9/28/03 at 07:15 (131403)

It was good to hear from you when I came here this morning, Julie, as well as Nancy S. and Dorothy who wrote after I went to bed. I did not sleep well, dreamed I was pushing a baby across railroad tracks with a train coming. I guess I was feeling very unsafe last night!

I have posted hundreds of times here in two years and have never resorted to name-calling and have rarely even disagreed openly with someone. Yesterday I thanked Scott for what I thought was a good move. That's my opinion, and I have a right to it as everyone has been writing about.

For that, I was called selfish and queried as to what right did I have to demand my way. I didn't. I offered a thanks and expressed my opinion. It was said to me by someone I respect that he was surprised at me and it was insinuated that I wanted a goody goody board where everyone thinks alike. That hurt, and I don't. I just shared my opinion with my thanks. Others shared the same opinion but were 'respectfully' disagreed with. I was put in a group of 'hand-wringers' who don't have enough sense to not read a post.

Then this morning I read a post from Dr. Ed which he wrote after I turned off the computer last night, 'Anyone should be able to bring a set of ideas and/or concepts here political or otherwise without having to undergo personal attack.'

That didn't happen to me yesterday.

I truly wish everyone well and have enjoyed being here in the past. I came for help with foot problems and came away with much more: kindness, an escape from my own personal problems, and friendship. But I hate being called names. I've been called worse than what happened last night, but it still bothered me. Especially in light of what others have posted over and over yet are still defended and even appreciated. But I won't keep saying this; this is enough. If what the group wants is not helpful to me, then perhaps I need to move on.

I appreciate the kindness and helpfulness of many here in the past.
Suzanne

Re: Good morning from England

wendyn on 9/28/03 at 08:12 (131408)

Good morning Julie!

I am finally back at yoga (I had to drop the class from May till August due to conflicts with school).

I am SO happy to be back, and I'm hoping that it will keep me sane over the next few months. I've started a major (high pressure) project at work. We are under enomoursly tight deadlines with unrealistic expectations, and there are two super negative people on team. That, combined with the school deadlines and family pressures should make for some stressful days.

I'd really like to be able to hang out here periodically for something fun to do. I have enough serious stuff in my life that I don't usually need to go looking for it elsewhere.

We did some 'Viny' (sp?) yoga last week. Do you know a lot about it? I know it has more to do with breathing. It was a nice change.

Re: Good morning from England

marie on 9/28/03 at 08:22 (131414)

Thanks for clarifying. I hope that we can all be gracious enough to let this be a lesson. Unfortunately some unkind things were said on both sides of the argument. We spend way to much time analyizing and arguing. So I hope that this can become a safe place for folks to chat and feel safe to do so.

Now does anyone have any cool and fun topics to discuss? Dorothy brought up films and books under her post New Info.

Re: Good morning from England

Carole C in NOLA on 9/28/03 at 08:26 (131416)

Suzanne, I hope you don't leave. You have helped a lot of people here.

I will understand if you do go, though. I can relate to what you are saying, and I feel much the same. I've been gravitating elsewhere lately, but I seem to always come back to see if things have improved at all.

Carole C

Re: Viniyoga

Julie on 9/28/03 at 08:38 (131419)

I do know about Viniyoga, Wendy. It's an excellent style of yoga, soundly based, and the training is good, so I'm sure you have a proficient teacher. Yes, breathing, especially breath awareness and breath-movement co-ordination, is a very important part of it, as it is of the tradition in which I teach (Bihar School of Yoga).

I'm glad you've got back to yoga - enjoy it! Betcha it will help with those work-and-school stresses.

Re: Good morning from England

nancy s. on 9/28/03 at 09:39 (131425)

wendy, any team that wants to successfully negotiate and live up to, or even exceed, unrealistic expectations MUST have you on it. it's your fate, and that's what you get for being so sharp. if you'd fake a little dullness now and then maybe you wouldn't get into these positions.

words of wisdom from a lunatic operating on four hours of sleep.

nancy
.

Re: Good morning from England

Julie on 9/28/03 at 09:58 (131428)

Suzanne, I am sure you were hurt by the things you were said to you yesterday. But I know, and I think everyone who knows you knows, that they were untrue. 'Selfish' is the very last word to apply to you - and you are the very last person to apply it to. That really was uncalled for, and ridiculous, and unkind.

Don't leave because of that.

As for the other remark - well, sometimes people do get hurt when they speak up - many here have experienced that, and now you have. Try not to let it get to you.

I hope you won't leave because of that remark.

And as for what the group wants - well, that seems to be in the balance right now. But I am obviously not the only person who doesn't want it to be a wholly political forum. I think the majority probably want what you want: a Social/Support board. And I KNOW that the board would be a very much less helpful place without you and your input.

So don't leave for that reason either. Think about your dream. If you were REALLY pushing a baby across railroad tracks with a train coming, you'd do your darndest to save the baby. I think that's what we're all trying to do right now. Stay and help save the baby/board. You know how highly most people here think of you.

Take care and all the best,

Julie

Re: Good morning from England

wendyn on 9/28/03 at 10:14 (131433)

Thanks (I think!) Nancy. I am going on 4 hours of sleep too, so I can relate.

Actually - feigning stupidity is really a good skill. It allows me to sit in meetings and say things like 'This may be a dumb question...but...' or 'I realize that this may be familiar to all of you..but can you explain...'. Usually it's in cases where I have to question something that has been overlooked but I don't want to make people defensive.

I've had to learn to sometimes keep my mouth shut (very hard for me) and also to maintain a really blank expression when I need to. (also very hard for me - I am prone to eye rolling).

I'm having a good time, but some parts of this are much harder to get used to than others.

Re: For Suzanne

Sharon W on 9/28/03 at 10:41 (131439)

Suzanne,

If you leave, for any reason whatsoever, that will be a catastrophe. You are the 'support' in 'Social/Support' -- no question of that! Regular posters here have always been able to count on you for words of encouragement and upbeat wisdom when they are needed. Please don't go.

This whole situation is a train wreck.

Sharon
:(

Re: Good morning from England

JudyS on 9/28/03 at 11:10 (131453)

Nancy S - so.....you're up to your old late-nite posting tricks again, huh? You gotta get some sleep girl! I-)

Re: Good morning from England

Ed Davis, DPM on 9/28/03 at 11:31 (131456)

Carole:
If giving your little clique ownership of the board is what makes you happy, then I guess you can consider things 'improved.' Too bad for the next new person here to whom you can spew the poison you did to me yesterday.
Ed

Re: Bad morning from England

Ed Davis, DPM on 9/28/03 at 11:36 (131458)

Julie:
It is simply not possible to 'swamp' a board in the manner you accused me of doing. This is not print medium where ther is a finite amount of space (although online storage space has a cost too). You are implying that your clique here who is having a victory/love fest of posts this morning celebrating the fact that you were successful in banning opposing thoughts cannot post things when others are posting political ideas. That is absurd.

Poor Bonnie. She just got here and is already looking for a new place to go . You all should be ashamed of yourselves.
Ed

Re: Viniyoga

Ed Davis, DPM on 9/28/03 at 12:09 (131473)

Julie:
I have a friend from South Philly named Vinnie and he practices yoga.
Ed

Re: Good morning from England

Carole C in NOLA on 9/28/03 at 12:20 (131475)

Ed, I don't know what is up with you but I hope you consider seeking some professional help. Posts filled with hatred and venom are not the answer.

Carole C

Re: Bad morning from England

Julie on 9/28/03 at 12:34 (131484)

Ed, it IS possible. It has been done, and as you've seen, people do not like it. I have 'implied' nothing: I have stated, as clearly and truthfully as possible, what I think has happened here. When most of the posts, most of the discussions, on a message board make people feel uncomfortable and as though they don't want to be part of it, when they feel - as Suzanne, one of the most helpful posters here - now does, they stop posting. They stop participating. They become disaffected and alienated. They go away. Does that surprise you? As a professional carer, it shouldn't.

There is no 'clique' here, and the mood today is far from celebratory. I think people feel tired and sad. It is not 'opposing thoughts' that Scott has said should be stopped, it is ALL political debate.

Why can you not see that? Why can you not understand how people feel about their Social/Support board having been commandeered for political purposes? Why can't you be here with your considerable skill and ability as a doctor, and simply give people the help they need and that you are so capable of giving? Why do you have to use the Social/Support board as a political platform?

If Bonnie needs a conservative discussion board, there are plenty of those around. My concern is for the people who need THIS board to be the Social/Support board that it was before politics took over. Bonnie is in fact one of the very few people who have 'just arrived' here. There have been very few new people arriving lately. People (i.e. Judy yesterday) have said that they would never have come here for support and help if they had come upon this board over the past few months. I certainly wouldn't have. New people have been put off.

You like to tell people they should be ashamed of themselves. I am not ashamed of myself for having tried to help restore this place to the purpose so precisely stated in its title, that people appreciated and depended upon, and that many still need. I still think the wounds can be healed, but everyone will have to help. You too.

Re: Viniyoga

Julie on 9/28/03 at 12:38 (131486)

Now there's a coincidence, Ed. What sort of yoga?

Re: Good morning from England

Ed Davis, DPM on 9/28/03 at 12:43 (131494)

Carole:
Who attacked who yesterday?
Ed

Re: Viniyoga

Ed Davis, DPM on 9/28/03 at 12:47 (131499)

Julie:
Geez -- it was a joke :)
Ed

Re: Bad morning from England

Ed Davis, DPM on 9/28/03 at 12:54 (131502)

Julie:
So if Bonnie has heel pain and needs support, she can stay here as long as she does not express her political views? Julie, I realize that we can go back on forth on this forever, but the act of expressing one's political views or otherwise does not push out other information or discussions. Anyone has been able to start as thread about anything they want at any time they want. Sometimes posts get no responses and sometimes long threads ensue -- people respond to what they are interested in and don't have to respond to what they are not interested in--FREEDOM OF CHOICE.
Ed

Re: Viniyoga

Julie on 9/28/03 at 12:56 (131504)

Sure I knew that, Ed. I was simply responding lightly and politely to your post. :0)

Re: Good morning from England

Carole C in NOLA on 9/28/03 at 12:58 (131505)

Ed, accusations and/or quotes out of context aren't going to make you feel better. I am serious when I say that I really think you should consider seeing someone. You may never believe me but I say this because I care.

Carole C

Re: Good morning from England

Ed Davis, DPM on 9/28/03 at 13:01 (131506)

Carole:
And I think you should see some professional help because I care.
Ed

PS Now, since you cannot defend your actions of yesterday, you are questioning my sanity. You really keep the knife hidden well.

Re: For Suzanne

marie on 9/28/03 at 13:02 (131507)

Suzanne,

You are a dear sweet person. I won't ask you to stay because it's totally your choice, but if you do leave you'll be missed.

I agree with Sharon this has become a train wreck.

Re: Calling Judy -- LETS STOP THIS HERE

Ed Davis, DPM on 9/28/03 at 13:10 (131513)

Judy:
A new morning and a new attack -- Carole telling me to get 'professional help' for defending myself from her. You can tell where this is going.
This may sound more subtle than some of the things you deleted, nevertheless, I am, unfortunately forced to defend myself against an unwarranted accusation. Questioning the sanity of your opponent is an old tactic but a vicious one.

I would appreciate it if you deleted the posts, starting with Carol's insinuation about my mental status.
Ed

Re: viciousness

Phil C on 9/28/03 at 13:16 (131517)

Carole:
When it comes to viciousness on this board, your are the champ.
Phil C

Re: For Suzanne

Suzanne D on 9/28/03 at 14:03 (131535)

Thank you very much for the kind words Carole, Julie, Sharon, and Marie. I am sensitive to others' feelings, but the down side of that is that I get too sensitive myself sometimes. I have to get myself in check and remember that 'it's not all about me'. I have brushed my feelings off my shoulders and am here to help anyone in any way I can at any time. Sometimes that may not amount to much, but it's what I have to give.

Suzanne

Re: for Suzanne / Hugging Students?

marie on 9/28/03 at 14:27 (131540)

Ahhhh we have all had our sensitive moments...I am a fine example of that. Glad to hear your ok.

I have a question...My 4th and 5th graders are so much fun but they hug me all the time. I have the flu now because of that. Do let your 1st graders hug you? I don't have a problem with hugging but I don't want to be sick all year either. Any solutions would be helpful!

Re: For Suzanne

Carole C in NOLA on 9/28/03 at 14:33 (131542)

Good! I am glad that you will stay to help. You have done so much good on this board, Suzanne. It DOES amount to a lot and what you have to give is appreciated by many.

Carole

Re: for Suzanne / Hugging Students?

Suzanne D on 9/28/03 at 14:33 (131543)

Yes, Marie, my students hug me quite often. Sometimes they just sort of grab me as I'm passing by! One little girl who is very sensitive to others' feelings knows that I've had a lot of migraines lately. She will come up and say, 'I'm going to give you a big hug to make things better!' :) And then there are LAST year's students who hug me whenever they pass in the hall.

I know what you mean about catching colds and viruses. The best advice I can give you is to wash your hands very often and take vitamin C. That's what I do. After a while, you get immune to most of what is going around, it seems. I know a first year teacher across the hall from me has been so sick. I just don't think she's had time to become immune to a lot of the illnesses. Since you've been with high schoolers in recent years, it may just take a little time for you, too. Oh, yes, and also keep the desks washed once a week if the custodian doesn't do it for you. That seems to help, too.

I hope you feel better soon!
Suzanne :)

Re: For Suzanne

Suzanne D on 9/28/03 at 14:36 (131545)

Thank you, Carole. You have helped so many, too. Your posts on practical PF treatment along with your story of your healing would amount to a book's worth! I've always found it fascinating to also read about your work as an oceanographer. Sometimes when we study the ocean I will tell my students that I have a friend who is an oceanographer, and they are impressed! :)

Suzanne

Re: Bonnie

Julie on 9/28/03 at 14:49 (131552)

Ed

Please calm down. If Bonnie needs support of course she is welcome here, as is everyone who needs support. If she wishes to discuss politics, as Scott has stated, it she should not do it here, but elsewhere.

Freedom of choice does not mean freedom to abuse hospitality - and I am talking about Scott's hospitality in allowing us to talk here. I think he is showing admirable restraint in not throwing us all out of the sandbox (to quote Wendy earlier today).

Re: For Suzanne

Carole C in NOLA on 9/28/03 at 14:53 (131553)

Right now I wish I was a RETIRED oceanographer. LOL I am looking forward to sleeping in every morning some day. Thank you for your interest. Maybe now I'll be able to go back to work tomorrow with renewed vigor. I do love learning about the oceans, especially when I have a chance to go to sea. Ironically, I don't see the ocean as much now as I once did, because my job keeps me so busy.

In the past I have tried very hard to help anybody who is suffering the kind of pain and misery that I felt when my PF was really bad. I think we help people better as a group than any one of us could do in person. What would we do without Julie's Yoga stretches, or your near-infinite understanding and compassion, or the wisdom added by so many more of our heelspurs.com friends? Together we are more than the sum of our parts.

Carole C

Re: For Suzanne

Julie on 9/28/03 at 16:18 (131557)

Suzanne, I am glad to see that you are willing to stay. This is a crucial time, and those who care about the Social/Support board are needed here.

Bless you,

Julie

Re: Good morning from England

nancy s. on 9/28/03 at 17:25 (131568)

yah, wendy, i know how hard it is to put on a faux blank expression. i'm an eye-roller too, not to mention that every single other thing shows on my face. when i lived in a big bad city, i used to practice looking hard and mean in the mirror, hoping to look that way on the street, and what a joke -- i was terrible at it! good luck with your blank expressions. if you fail, in the end i doubt it's all it's cracked up to be anyway.

nancy
.

Re: Good morning from England

nancy s. on 9/28/03 at 17:39 (131574)

an honest question: is the suggestion to seek professional help an attack? geez, i don't think so. i've sought professional help several times and it helped change my life from night to day; i'd recommend it to anyone in psychological or physical pain. the last time i sought it, it was on the suggestion of someone who cared, and whenever i'm really enjoying life and contributing to others' enjoyment of life, i remember to feel the gratitude for that person's suggestion.

nancy
.

Re: For Suzanne

nancy s. on 9/28/03 at 17:44 (131576)

suzanne . . . you are a very big person in the very best sense of the word.

nancy
.

Re: Good morning from England

Julie on 9/29/03 at 05:41 (131609)

Nancy and Wendy, that's me too all over. Eye-roller, mouth-twister, you name it, my face does it. I am transparent. Nevertheless I'm always surprised when someone tells me 'I could see how you felt'.

Maybe I should learn to use these emoticon things - but I'm sort of allergic to them.

Re: Good morning from England

john h on 9/29/03 at 14:11 (131641)

Nancy S. I sure have to agree with you on this one. Professional help has saved millions of lives. I think people sometimes use that term not realizing how it may hurt someone. Depending on how the expression is used (and I do not know what one you are referring to) it could be construed as an attack or hurtful or it could be a meaningful suggestion. I would personally not use it unless I knew the person well and really thought they would take the suggestion in the manner in which it was suggested. I have probably said that a time or two to my wife and she told me where to go and in no uncertain terms. My boss could sure use some professional help but I would be in the unemployment line if I suggested it to him..