For this week's gluten free soapbox we go back to the forums. Those online “support groups" that are supposed to be a place of sharing, healing and camaraderie. People log on to the gluten free forums to talk about their troubles and make friends who are struggling with the same issues they are. That is why I am so disturbed today.
Something I've noticed happening every so often (not constantly, but too much) is the sarcasm and derision thrown at certain people on the forums. There are some people who are very rude when answering posts and responding to concerns from others. Often times, this leads to the original poster leaving the forum completely and traveling their lonely gluten free road alone.
This leads to the question, What is wrong with you people!? Really, is it so hard to believe that in a situation like starting a gluten free diet that there will be strange questions? Can we really stomp on people for having symptoms we have never encountered?
There are a lot of different sensitivity levels and different reasons for going gluten free. Is it possible that just because you, yourself don't have a certain reaction, that someone else might? It angers and saddens me to see that even in places that are supposed to be helpful there are still people who can't control their rudeness.
It seems extreme to suggest that because someone has a reaction to a certain gluten free product that they are imagining things. How dare you presume to be the ultimate gluten free deity and pronounce judgement on someone who was looking for real advice! Is it so hard to just be a real person?
The opposite is true too. I've also seen it turned around so that a well meaning person has recommended a product and got shut down for it. Sometimes these answers are downright cruel.
Here is my advice for people who are so dissatisfied with their own lives that they can't help spraying venom on unsuspecting strangers: Get over yourself! You are in the same boat as the rest of us and have no right to drill holes in other people's space.
As for the vast majority of people on gluten free forums who consistently offer good advice and help, I thank you. You are making a difference. Don't let the meanies chase you away.
------------------------------- Author Information: Marissa Carter, Kansas City Marissa Carter Website: www.lostscribe.webs.com Gluten Free Product Reviews: www.glutenfreeproductreviews.blogspot.com Kansas City Gluten-Free Food Examiner: http://www.examiner.com/x-19097-Kansas-City-GlutenFree-Food-Examiner Blog: www.marissacarter.blogspot.com Suite 101: www.suite101.com/profile.cfm/mmrcarter Twitter: LostScribe AIM: lostscribe79