the smell of my desperation has become a stench

Community

Hi. Remember the dooce community?

That technically clunky yet actively engaged place where people shared their triumphs and losses, recipes and pro tips, their birth stories and devastating encounters with the rougher corners of life?

That thing! YES! It lived for almost nine years on a platform that very quickly turned into a jalopy ham sandwich held together by twine, used band-aids, and a handful of Chaquita banana stickers I’ve peeled off, held over the garbage only to pause and think, “But what if I ever run out of tape?”

Yes, I did steal that line from a blog post I wrote in January. I plagiarized myself. Because I’m lazy. Don’t look at me like that if you have ever once used dry shampoo. Because IT’S THE SAME THING.

I recently moved the community to a much better platform called Slack which has desktop and mobile features we always wanted to have on that jalopy ham sandwich. But development and maintenance of those features was cost prohibitive. But Slack? It’s free! And according to a few of the initial participants who tested out the waters, it’s pretty fucking fun. And? You can use it on your phone. Some of you just reached spontaneous orgasm.

Participation in this community is now by invite only. If you’d like to join, fill out the form below.

When you receive an invite and accept it, we want you to adhere to the following suggestions and “community guidelines,” and by “we” I mean all of the wonderful people participating peacefully in conversations.

First, go introduce yourself on the #intros channel. Tell us all a bit about yourself and why you’re here and if you’re the type of mongrel who cooks hot dogs in the microwave.

As a point of order, once you are accepted into the community you will automatically be added to the following channels: #general, #announcements, #tech_support, and #intros. @dooce, @americanrecluse, and @jessicam are administrators and you can message us with questions or comments.

Next, explore all the channels that already exist. We’re talking about #boobs, #fitness, #meetups, #travel, and have channels offering support and celebration of everything little and big. If you have something you want to talk about and don’t see a channel for it, create it. It’s free and easy. Just announce it in the #announcements channel.

While some of the topics might be serious, the idea is to create a fun destination for dooce readers and fans. It’s for entertainment, enlightenment and to help one another. Do not get in there and start poking people in the butt unless you’re in the #please_poke_me_in_the_butt channel. Got it?

What to Do

Do be nice

Community members are people with feelings. We are all different, but we all deserve to feel comfortable. We may not always agree, but we need to agree to disagree with respect and courtesy. Be polite and considerate.

Do self-moderate what you share

You need to take responsibility for your words and the tips, links, and pointers you share. You’re welcome to be funny or clever. However, we are reminding you to think before you post.

Do enjoy yourself!

We set up this space so people who read dooce could have a good time and maybe help a few people as well as get some help from the mundane to the serious. You will get out of the community what you put into it.

What Not to Do

Don’t spam

This community is not a place for commercial activity (e.g. recruiting or marketing your product) unless it happens inside a channel dedicated to that purpose (e.g. go create a #jobs or a #gigs or a #gofundme channel). Don’t spam this place with a link to your Kickstarter campaign. We will shut you down immediately. If you see commercial behavior going on, direct message me @dooce, and I’ll fix it.

Don’t harass people

This isn’t the place to lash out, abuse, impersonate or intimidate others. If we receive a valid complaint about your conduct, depending on severity, you’ll be warned or your account deleted. Avoid demeaning, discriminatory, harassing, hateful, or physically threatening behavior, speech, and imagery.

Don’t share illegal stuff

If you do this, your account will be blocked. You will also be reported to the authorities if it’s that severe.

Don’t be a creep

Just, don’t. Don’t stalk people. Don’t actively try to make people uncomfortable because you have a strong opinion. Don’t pick fights. Don’t gossip about other members. Don’t make us smell your feet.

When to report questions, user accounts or user contributions:

If you come across content that is offensive, harassing, demeaning or in any way threatening, then it needs to be reported. This is not tattling or snitching. This is helping the community be a better place. Please alert me or the other administrators: @dooce @americanrecluse @jessicam

So, hey. Yeah. How are you guys doing?

There is a conference going on in Salt Lake City this week and I’m hosting a few people at my house, so when I think of words like chaos and disorder I wonder why there aren’t more passionate words to describe what it’s like up in here.

Here.

I’m being pulled in several directions right now and don’t feel like I have the time to write about what is going on in my life with the respect that it demands. But here in this thirty-minute block of time that I have I want to share a few things with you.

I am no longer suffering thoughts of suicide. I shared that detail with you to underscore the amount of desperation that lead to this transformation in my life. Because this wasn’t just some silly thought I had. Like, I know! Let’s disrupt all of our lives! It’ll be a fun crazy party! Especially the part where hundreds of thousands of people get to weigh in on how insane I am, and whoa! Did they ever see this coming!

It is very strange to see my face on the local news as an anchor talks about my marital problems. And to read about it in the local paper. And to see news organizations in other countries speculating about what went wrong. Strange. That’s it. I’m not angry about it because I know I’m a public figure or persona or whatever it is you want to call me. I don’t expect anyone to afford me privacy at this time. Would it be nice? Yes, of course, but I understand human nature. I’ve been writing openly about my life for almost eleven years, so people are going to talk about this. And awful things will be written. That’s just reality. And I accept it.

But you guys have reinforced that all of that doesn’t really matter. I’m so incredibly touched by your words of encouragement and sympathy. Yes, I am a stranger. I don’t know you, but that’s the amazing thing about this medium. We reach out there into the void, find each other’s hands and know we are not alone.

So, yeah. I found myself in very dark place. But those who know me, and those who really understand what I stand for know that I don’t like to be in those dark places. I actively try to claw my way out of them, and today, here, right now, I am in the light. In fact, I’ve been in the light for some time now. I have hope. Change had to happen, so I made it happen.

Jon sees the girls every day. He helps Leta practice piano, spends time with Marlo making shapes out of clay, and then after we have dinner together he helps me put them to bed. There are no salacious details to uncover. There is no fighting or scheming or attempts to seize power. We’re two very level-headed adults making our way through this maze.

Is there a lot of crying? Hell, yes. But I can talk about that later.

Thank you again for your comments, your email, your tweets, and your thoughts. I hope you’ll hold my hand a little longer.