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Malamutes - I'm not sure if you meant this seriously, but all contact forms on the BellaOnline site are completely private. It would be a huge breach of integrity if I were to reveal the content of any contact form to any third party.

We never sell our newsletter lists, we never reveal our email addresses in our members area to anyone, and we never reveal or forward any contact form details to any third party, anywhere. It is a cornerstone of our privacy policy.


Lisa Shea, Low Carb and Video Games Editor
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I just wondered what percentage of the usual posters were affected by this?

Personally I saw most of our posts as healthy venting (which most professionals agree is better than bottling up feelings and not dealing with them) rather than ranting. It gave us all a chance to deal with issues that we couldn't in a predominantly child-obsessed world where it's often seen as "wrong" to criticise a child's behaviour.

I don't necessarily see the benefit of trying to make everything positive all the time when it's not eg "acting" vs dealing with the reality of life as it confronts you.

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I hesitate to try to respond to this because any way I respond could start to give away information which was sent to me in private, and have people start to make guesses or assumptions about other forum members. I think any way that I try to answer this would begin to cause issues for some people.

What I think I can do is address the second part of your post in a very generic way, summarizing up the sentiment of what many of the writers sent to me. That would seem safe enough, and I hope none of the commenters feels upset by this.

Yes, they agree completely that bottling up feelings without taking action on them can be harmful. However, to have the main focus of post after post be along the lines of

I saw a kid in the WalMart today - he was awful
I saw a kid in Home Depot today - he was awful
...

was simply not enjoyable or helpful or something they wanted to participate in. I am sure there are many other things in our lives each day than running into awful children one after another!

The commenters felt the primarily complaint-laden posts did not help support them in their married-no-kids existence. It did not make them feel better about being child-free, to hear how other parents had done badly at being parents. To them it was like being in a Texas forum and hearing repeatedly how people had visited NY and it had sucked. They wanted to hear more about how to have fun living in Texas.

You might think, why did they not just post other threads which addressed the issues they wanted to talk about? What was happening is that there was so much "strong anger" in those "kids suck" forum postings that members were literally afraid to post in here, lest those feelings then be directed towards them. I agree that this does not necessarily make logical sense, but this was an emotional reaction to the environment in here. With all of the "this woman was stupid" and "that woman was idiotic" going back and forth, members were afraid that their post would then draw that negative energy onto their heads.

I am intrigued, because a group of us were actually talking about this very issue for several hours tonight (in real life). What would you say was the difference between venting and ranting?


Lisa Shea, Low Carb and Video Games Editor
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Lisa - a longer post doesn't make it more effective.

I'll cut to the chase for those trying desperately to sift through your mud.

You say that this is what CF people are about (or a large number of posts, or whatever rhetoric I'll gladly kneel to in order to prove a point):

Originally Posted By: Lisa Low Carb Ed
I saw a kid in the WalMart today - he was awful
I saw a kid in Home Depot today - he was awful

I challenge anyone and everyone reading this post to dig up anything and everything in this forum that wasn't a rant -- something that proved we had a home here - a safe haven - filled with things that were NOT rants: Education. Lifestyle. Books. Culture. Current events. Activities. Travel. Politics. Dreams. Cries for help. Bad days. Great days. Quotes. New people saying they were glad to find us.

We didn't house a negative compost to which you're trying to point.

Last edited by Angela P; 04/29/08 03:35 AM.

"Men and women think that it is necessary to have children. It is not. It is their animal nature and social custom, rather than reason, which makes them believe that this is a necessity." --Democritus
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Lisa, I disagree. This was not the negative cesspool that you're making it out to be. For many of us it was a safehaven. We discussed a wide variety of issues - some vents, some celebrations of what we were accomplishing and most of all it had a family atmosphere.

Now, the forums themselves seem bereft of lively discussion as nobody is going into real issues for fear of being censored. Never before have I seen this board so full of "fluffy" posts, ones that aren't about somebody dealing with a bad situation that they've encountered, being scared about a role at work that was troubling them, looking at humorous news articles.

Personally, I didn't and still don't see what you seem to. I don't think it was a place where people were just saying "I saw a kid at WalMart today - he was awful". It was a place where I could come to vent about having to babysit a friend's child and not knowing the level to which I could discipline him, share with people when I had a great accomplishment that would not be celebrated by the outside world because it wasn't mainstream or merely find some like-minded people.

Now, the main posters seem to be Bella Editors (the majority of whom have children) or the Bella Owner. How times have changed.

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Rather, it was the large volume of complaints by MNK forum members who felt as if they did not want to post in a place filled by ranting.

Lisa, if so many "large volume" of members who felt it was not a safe place to post....and now with the "new rules" and "changes" WHERE IS THIS LARGE VOLUME OF MEMBERS now? I see no new threads, no new postings; all the the new threads are by editors of the site?

When I was searching for a place to chat about being CF and I came across this site I was so happy b/c there was so much energy and so many different topics; I could just sit and cruise and pick one. Some days I could pop on and get suggestions of places to travel for couples only, some days I maybe had a bad experience with a kid or their parents and just needed to vent. Now I come to the site and I see nothing....the only person starting new threads has a child and is the owner/moderator??? So where are all these other members that wanted this change so bad?


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Malamutes and Angela, I must add a post of support to you guys here. I may not have been a hugely frequent poster, but I visit this site every day and have been watching what's been going on. I've been biting my tongue, but I now feel I've got to say something here.

Sorry in advance for the uber long post.

You know what? It's so sad to see what's happening to this forum. There's absolutely nothing wrong with having somewhere online that people can vent and talk about the good - and bad - aspects of a CF lifestyle. Unfortunately, it appears that we're not even allowed to do that these days. I might be talking out of order here, but like Malamutes, I've also noticed that the most frequent posters here ATM are mainly the childed Bella Editors, who don't seem to understand the fact we'll come here to vent if we feel the need. Excuse me, but isn't that part of the point of this forum? We come here to talk (and yes, vent) amongst like-minded people without fear of having to keep quiet for fear of insulting a sensitive parent (as is the case in our lives offline). If that involves venting about an unruly brat then so be it. Can't decide whether it's venting or ranting? No matter - it's hugely subjective anyway and something that will never be agreed on, so it's probably better to agree to disagree on that particular subject. On the other hand, if a kid or parent has been particularly nice or something along those lines, then that will also get mentioned here (and has been). It appears that we can't say much here these days, let alone what we really feel.

I would say that if there are some CF people that aren't entirely comfortable with what's being said here, then maybe this isn't the place for them. I certainly don't mean any disrespect in saying that, but as the saying goes, it's different strokes for different folks. As there are different CF people, there are also different CF forums. There are some CF forums I don't really get on with; others are great!

Let's get this straight. I am not here for the benefit of parents. I am here to chat about me and my lifestyle with other like-minded people who will understand where I'm coming from and have the ability to empathise. I am happy, however, to answer genuine questions, but I will not tolerate being bingoed or insulted in a place "formerly" considered to be a CF safe haven.

Now bear in mind that this comes soon after our rather nasty parent troll directly bingoing and insulting the users of this forum. Ever get the feeling you're being kicked when you're down? I'm not getting any sort of feeling of support here - and I'm not talking about me personally, but the forum as a whole.

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Originally Posted By: Lisa Low Carb Ed
Angela - as you know, we have only shut down accounts of people who requested it.


Actually, Lisa, Ingilbert never asked to have her account deleted, or her access to this site removed. Of course, you have conveniently deleted her post, so you are free to claim otherwise. She did not use any of the derogatory language you have been so focussed on, nor did she insult anyone. What she did was to point out some uncomfortable truths - I suppose that it was easier for you to delete her post than to address them, or leave them up for there for the world to see.

And that, my dear, is censorship.


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The way I see it, anybody who visits this forum has several choices:

1. read because they are interested what is posted, but not post anything themselves - they just read.

2. read and provide their own input. Now there are two possible options (and about 1,000 in between!): they either agree with the topic that is being discussed (which is fine) or they disagree with the topic being discussed (which is also fine). As I mentioned before, I love having a healthy discussion or maybe you could even call it a "debate". I love when two people can "agree to disagree" in a civilized manner. I even like it when somebody plays devil's advocate, because it oftentimes can open your mind and broaden your horizon. Coming on this site does not necessarily mean that you have to be in agreement with everybody's opinion. In fact, I think it is rather stimulating to hear from people who have totally different view points. I try to keep an open mind and understand where they are coming from. I don't want to hang out with a bunch of folks who are afraid of expressing themselves just to be pc. I think there is something to be learned from everybody's opinion and/or perspective.

4. Last but not least, if a reader/poster/member does not agree with what is being posted and finds the contents offensive, embarrassing or otherwise unworthy of their dignity, there is a little red "x" at the top right hand corner of your screen. Just click on it....

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Wow...what has happeded here? This is nuts.

I would like to say, though, that yes sometimes Childfree people, or those who are "Married No Kids" like myself and my husband, tend to find the behavior of many kids these days (and their parents) to be appalling. And yes, for many of us, like my husband, the bad behavior of many kids (but of course, not all) *IS* another one of the myriad reasons that we do not have kids. It just is a real reason for us, and that is a fact. I do not see this as negative, we just find bad behavior in many of today's kids to be yet another reason to not have a child of our own. If we want to talk about that here, we could. To discuss that as a reason in front of our friends with kids (even well-behaved kids) got us some "gasps" and some funny looks. It was safe to bring it up here, with like-minded adults, and find that we are not alone in this feeling. Not everyone here felt the same way we do, but many did.

Too bad we are not able to discuss that reason here any longer.

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