Saturday, August 30, 2008

Hot Button Topics

For the last few days I've been ridiculously stressed out by the topic of Religion in my yahoo group. A few months back this was a topic that went on far too long and it really made me uncomfortable then but I said nothing. This time around, I wanted to excuse myself from the conversation before I got really upset. I asked that someone shoot me an email when the conversation was over. Aparantly...in a few peoples minds that was the wrong thing to do. I started getting a ridiculous amount of emails...equal parts telling me I was being rude or on the other hand thanking me for saying something because it turns out I wasn't the only one uncomfortable. In fact, I wasn't asking for the conversation to stop; I was excusing myself from it just as I would if I were physically in a group discussing it. I've been so upset about this that I even googled "hot button topics" and came up with this great article, it advised me to walk away...WHICH I WAS TRYING TO DO. Someone also had sent me an email giving the idea that religious or other hot button topics be noted in the subject line so that if someone wanted to avoid those posts without getting upset they could. Great idea I thought...but apparantly to those discussing the hot button topic of religion it was a horrible idea and I was hurting their feelings. What? Here I'm trying to allow the discussion but allow others like myself to avoid it if they'd like. I got the same number of thank you's as I did telling me that I don't have enough God in my life. Again, WHAT?? Just because it makes me uncomfortable to discuss means I don't have enough God in my life? Whatever...I certainly don't need to be made feel bad just because I don't want to discuss God in a group. How about we discuss abortion next? Sexual Orientation? War? Politics? What, one of those makes you uncomfortable? Huh.

I don't know, I've learned over the years that there's just certain things I personally don't like talking about. No one knows how much money I make besides my husband and the guy who does our taxes. I hate discussing politics. It puts me on edge. I rarely even discuss politics with my husband because we have widely different political views. Religion. Well, let me tell you all...I went to catholic grade school and high school. Just because I don't like to discuss religion in a large group doesn't make me a bad person without God in my life.

Some of these things just make me completely squeemish to discuss unless it's a one on one nature and sometimes even then I'd rather not discuss them.



15 comments:

jillquilts said...

Well said, Jen! Apparently, some people just can't agree to disagree without putting up a fight.

Jo-Ann said...

I'm uncomfortable with the discussion of religion. Can never understand how individuals don't respect another's thoughts if they don't agree - it applies to a lot of subjects - religion, politics. I keep those topics to myself with the exception of my hubby.

Carol VR said...

I hear ya and give kudos to you for allowing it to continue rather than kabooshing it when it started.

Connie said...

Jen, hang in there! Don't let any one upset you--you are a good and fair person and you certainly don't deserve anyone giving you cr*p about having your own opinions. I think you do a great job with this group.
Connie

Cindy (aka Peony the House Elf) said...

I totally agree with you. There are certain subjects that I to don't like to discuss feeling they are private and those are religion and politics. To me religion is a private matter. I don't need to write all about it and force it on others. One time years ago I was told I was an atheist because I didn't go to church. Needless to say I have nothing more to do with that person. I do object when people attack my daughter and I'm going to object in a loud manner. Back off ladies she was raised going to Catholic grade school and Catholic highschool. She knows right from wrong and lives by that.
Cindy, the proud Mom of Jen

Jennifer said...

Amen Jen...woops, I mean well said ;) Thanks for putting a stop to the discussion in the group and thanks for not leaving...we wouldn't be the same without your leadership! You've created a great forum for quilters to discuss on and off topic stuff and I don't think it is too much to ask for someone to put a header/warning when they are treading into highly personal and emotional issues. I hope your stress level lowers quickly and soon!

Regina said...

Cindy - you raised a great kid - and I am glad to call her a friend! Well said Jen!

BitnByAQuiltingBug said...

Jen, I hope you already know how I feel about all of this. You rock and you're a great person. Let's all get back to normal? Whatever normal is....giggle!
Regina one i

Moneik said...

Jen you're awesome and don't let anyone tell you otherwise. You've been a strong leader in our group and we respect you for leading us. Hot topic items make many people uncomfortable and I'm glad you said something and we can move on to quilting related topics.

Linda said...

Good for you for standing up for yourself!

Debi said...

I could not agree with you more. There are several topics I will not discuss with others, family and/or friends. Religion and politics top the chart, as well as parenting, sexual issues, and my marriage. I am glad you decided to excuse yourself.

Gina said...

Good for you.

I kept out of the discussion as my views aren't necessarily the ones that people want to hear. Basically I know some very good people who aren't overly religious and I also know some horrid people who hide behind their religion.

My belief is that if you live right, help others if they need it and try not to think'speak bad of people then you are doing alright.

Love and hugs Gina xxx

Trish said...

Holy Crap, Batman! I go away for the weekend and all Hell breaks loose!

My input:

"You can't win Johnny, no matter what you do..." Baby to Johnny in the movie Dirty Dancing

Thanks for trying though, and I just wanted to say I'm so glad you stayed on as moderator!

vtquilter said...

Good for you for speaking up. You did it in a nice way, too. Love the idea of putting something in the subject so those of us who prefer not to discuss certain things can just delete them.

kt said...

I still have 525 unread pickle posse digests I haven't read... because I was getting so frustrated with the constant off-topic and downright rude discussions. I understand that mark's magazine (and subsequent yahoo group) was created to be an outlet for those who wanted quilting with an edge, or quilting that isn't so "hoity-toity" (not that there's anything wrong with that!)... but there are many people in that group who rub me that wrong way. their constant discussion of religion, politics, and other "hot button" topics has really turned me off. there are so many women in that group that are, in my opinion, ruining it for everyone else. sometimes the ladies that have that one post saying how much they don't like the other posts creates more chaos than the original. I opted to remove myself completely, without announcing my displeasure, in the hopes that eventually I will go back. I think you made the right decision in stepping away from that which made you uncomfortable. good for you!

(why are my comments always so ridiculously long?! - I'm sorry!)