I used to be a member of a now-defunct forum, called Otherkin Alliance. There were a group of us that had grown pretty close as friends, and for the most part stayed around while the stream of newbies flowed in and out. Sometimes, we were nice to them. Sometimes, we were not: after all, they wouldn’t stick around, and they weren’t on the same level as we were.
While I have severely been missing that sense of community in my life lately, I don’t miss that attitude. I still believe in tough love, and being blunt, and honest, when more gentle ways prove ineffective. But the whole clique thing and treating newer people as disposable punching bags? Getting one’s panties all up in a bunch over some kind of “social justice” that doesn’t even affect you personally? Arguing strictly over semantics instead of trying to meet people halfway to make some kind of actual connection, automatically assuming others you don’t know are less than you?
Unfortunately, that’s the attitude I tend to find prevalent in both the pagan, and otherkin, communities I have tried to join the past two years or so. Albeit I’ve mostly tried Tumblr (which I was braced for failure with), and old school, static forums.
I’ve developed more of a sense of community from the random passersby on this blog that message me once or twice, then I don’t hear from them ever again, than after hundreds of posts on the more popular pagan and otherkin boards out there.
And I’m done trying.
So hello, WordPress. You are now the only tie I’m going to actively try to maintain to those two communities at this point in time. Maybe someday I can gather up enough spoons to start a new group for people who get what I’m talking about.