ADARKARA
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"Tough Love" Retaliation?

Friday, July 22, 2016

On June 6, 2016 I wrote a blog called "Tough Love". You can read it here:

www.sparkpeople.com/mypa
ge_public_journal_individu
al.asp?blog_id=6177769


At the time, I received nothing but positive feedback on this blog. This past weekend, enough people had clicked "I Liked This" to make this blog a featured blog. Once the blog became featured, I began to get a few comments where I was called "judgmental". One person even wrote their own blog berating my blog. In the comments section of THAT blog (which I will not link to), it was also inferred that I was judgmental, immature, and unempathetic. It was also suggested that if I did not like a blog I should just get over it and move on. This person felt I was directly judging her, but I'm not sure how that's actually possible, since I didn't know she existed until two days ago, and I wrote this blog more than six weeks ago. Also, the comments on her blog her blog were people telling her that they were sorry I had done this to her. I'm still a little confused about how the blog I wrote on my personal SparkPage could have been a direct attack on someone I didn't even know existed.

Honestly, I was taken aback by the amount of vitriol being spewed in my direction by total strangers. Just today I was told by a different person (I'm giving the benefit of the doubt here) that my legs "seem kind of heavy" and that I would be better off "exercising your body instead of your mouth". This same person went to my profile picture and commented "FAT". Yes, you read that right. I was body shamed on a weight loss website. By someone who disagreed with me.

The blog I wrote came from the heart. I will not delete it. I will not apologize for it. I will not delete the rude or hateful comments, and I will not make my page private. I WILL, however, speak out when I am harassed. If you harass me, your public comments and behavior will remain public. I will not lash out. I will not come to your page and harass you. I will not even send you a SparkMail about it. I don't need to. Your public behavior says more about you than I ever could.

I've been here a long time. I've lost 115 lbs total. I've kept 105 of that off for going on 2 years, and the other 10 lbs has come back in muscle. I'm happy in my skin, and I'm proud of what I've accomplished. Being proud of my hard work doesn't make me vain or narcissistic, nor does it make me a braggart. Being excited about being chosen to be in a magazine doesn't make me an attention whore. I refuse to be shamed for being myself, because there's nothing to be ashamed of.

Today my goal will be to go to 10 stranger's Spark Pages and leave a positive comment on their blog. I will repay this negativity with positivity.

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Member Comments About This Blog Post
  • LADYFROMTHEWOOD
    I'm glad the coaches have stepped in. That's outrageous. Sorry I missed it, but then I'd probably have blown a fuse on your behalf. You are the epitome of SP strength and grace. Shake 'em off like Bingley shakes off dust after walking through tight places. You know I think you are AWESOME and certainly never deserved any of that negativity. ROCK ON, ROCKSTAR!
    821 days ago
  • KNUCHI
    Its easier to lash out at others then to admit ones faults and put in the work to fix them. You have every right to your thoughts (with some expertise on the subject). I'm glad to see that you're not giving into the hate. Stay Positive, Stay Motivated, Stay Awesome!
    829 days ago

    Comment edited on: 8/10/2016 10:38:27 AM
  • VERSESTHATHURT
    Haters gonna hate. There's nothing wrong with what you wrote. There are certainly some things in there I needed to hear, that I wish I'd seen before today. Don't let these people troll you or bully you. You keep doing you.
    836 days ago
  • TALULAX-
    Class act all the way! I absolutely love how you are handling the situation!

    Keep up the great work!!!

    emoticon emoticon emoticon
    838 days ago
  • AHTRAP
    Lemme guess, I was among the folks the original blog was directed at? Deserved, if so. Not particularly harsh, though, I don't get where that particular criticism might have come from.

    Looks like SP personnel took it upon themselves to protect the miscreants from themselves. Oh well. Might have liked to offer them a piece of my mind.

    838 days ago
  • DEBVNE
    I can feel your energy and I love your spirit! It sounds like you have much to celebrate and feel proud about. I am taken aback at the meanness that exists, even in the virtual world. I applaud your stance in keeping your page available, have to admit I succumbed to the haters and set mine to private. Gulp! You have done an amazing job in finding your fit and exercising your strong...stay your course, love me a person who knows what they want and is willing to do the work to make it happen. Wishing you all the best, deb
    838 days ago
  • ARUNNINGKAT
    I see and read your blogs periodically. Your "tough love" blog was indeed tough, but right on in my view. I am sorry that the haters came out in masses and I am glad that you are not letting it get to you!

    One of my very first experiences with Spark was posting a article I found about how bigger women tend to get paid less and commented that it motivated me to get on track. It was immediate hate! I am just glad I didn't let it damage my view of Spark because it has been such a great part of my life.

    You have a great story! Don't let anyone take that from you!
    841 days ago
  • THEBLONDEGENIUS
    BRAVO. This is a blog that should become a featured blog. SP admin is usually great about stepping in when there are things like this going on; I wonder where they are on this issue.

    All that said, I'm proud of your steady efforts and your inspiration. Your success becomes all our success, because in the spirit of SparkPeople, we support and encourage one another. Well done!
    843 days ago
  • MASHLEIGH1964
    Thank you very much. I read both blogs and the funny thing is that I wrote a blog today about being honest with myself. I am one of those people who need tough love. You could have been speaking to me. I found you to be honest and forthright.

    So again, thank you.
    844 days ago
  • FLORIDASUN
    Wow...what an inspiration you are! If anyone has the background to offer 'tough love' it's you. Having been the recipient of some 'mean women' on one of my blogs years ago I know how you feel. I will say to you what one very smart sparker told me. It is YOUR blog, it is YOUR feelings, it Is YOUR expression and you have every right to share your observations. If someone doesn't agree...let them MOVE on...no one needs a 'hater' on this site....No one!

    Keeping being you...and know that you are doing GREAT! I'm so proud of you and for sharing the lessons you have learned being successful!

    Haters hate...I wish they would leave Spark...this is a wonderful supportive community and I have met some of the BEST friends I have here!

    Carry on...you are doing GREAT! emoticon
    844 days ago
  • GRACEOMALLEY
    Andrea-
    Never allow the inability of others to face themselves or their demons detract from or diminish your feelings or accomplishments. The issue is theirs, not yours. You have done so well in your journey and your blogs are always thought provoking and considered. If I don't enjoy a blog - by anybody - you just move on - unless it is directly nasty or negative - then I report it. I have never seen anything you posted that would meet that criteria.

    As my Mom always told me - consider the source and move on.
    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon
    845 days ago
  • BEESHELL8
    I saw some of those comments too and was surprised. If people don't like it, they don't have to read it! There is room hopefully in this world and on here for everyone's opinions! I see some people who approach their spark program in ways that don't work for me, but that's okay!! I thought it was kind of weird too that it popped up weeks after you wrote it. I never really get how some of this works, but keep doing what you are doing. Appreciate your approach too, in keeping what you wrote and who responded. That's taking the high road and being true to yourself. Thanks.
    845 days ago
  • RAINEY2010
    Hey Andrea, I missed the blog you referenced, but I was so happy to come across it this past weekend, as it was straight-up and to-the-point, and blog perfection!! While all of us go through growing pains during this process, when I see the same people repeating the same mistakes, and then posting about it over and over and over again, I'm like SOMEONE NEEDS SOME TOUGH LOVE. So, I'm glad you put it out there, and it was a featured blog!

    As a side note, I sometimes think a tough love approach isn't always accepted by the SP staff - I've seen this on mobile chat. I've seen threads disappear after a poster has asked the OP about certain decisions they've made (ie - "I love such-and-such diet pills!" or, "I've only eaten 400 calories today, yay me!!", or "I plan on losing a pound a day for the next 2 months!!".) And when the OP is questioned, sometimes that thread disappears (as I'm assuming the thread has been reported for not being "supportive".) - I wonder where the line is drawn between tough love and being mean? Doesn't happen all the time, just something I've noticed.

    Lastly, I'm sorry those members (trolls?) put you down, and those who think all blogs should be as cute as a kitten poster. When hugs, kisses, and pom poms don't work when focusing on a healthier body, sometimes the tough love approach is NEEDED.

    Keep on exercisin' that mouth and body, I love it!! :)

    845 days ago
  • JENSTRESS
    First, I agree with the poophead comment in the comments section here. And second, you know how I feel. I LOVED that blog. It spoke to me so much. While I agree that it was "tough" sometimes that is the kick in the pants we need. I know I related to so much of it, because it is the process of weight loss, the negative AND positive!
    845 days ago
  • OVERWORKEDJANET
    Congratulations on your maintenance and perseverance! I read your blog as a link from another.

    I recently had rude comments on, of all things, a simple blog of pictures of my grandkids!
    I report, delete and move on not letting it rile me. There's lots I could say but heck, they weren't worth my energy!

    Keep up the good work.
    845 days ago
  • NANHBH
    I'm so sorry that there are cyber bullies on this site. Looks like one of the coaches deleted the negative comments from your blog. I'm glad that they are policing the site. It's so hard to believe that people were offended by that blog. Keep speaking the truth. I took it to heart.
    emoticon
    846 days ago
  • ALEXSGIRL1
    your blog was excellent and truthful and needed. People who write mean comments do not like themselves and take it out on others that is very sad, sorry you had to go through that .
    846 days ago
  • SILVERYESTERDAY
    I went to the blog and read it out of curiosity. I didn't find it offensive, nor did I think it was meant to be. The internet offers some people far too much anonymity to "exercise freedom of speech". More and more, I think that freedom of speech on the internet means to be as vile as possible and not have any punishment for it. Keep doing what you are doing.
    846 days ago
  • PHOENIX1949
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    846 days ago
  • SP_COACH_DENISE
    As I posted on the original blog, I just want to point out the following from our Community Guidelines to remind anyone being negative or "mean" to anyone here on the site is not tolerated:

    SparkPeople’s vision is to make our community one of the strongest and most positive in the world! Here are some ways you can help us do that:
    Be positive and encouraging at every opportunity.
    Do everything you can to make others feel welcome.
    Keep an open mind as others talk about their beliefs, goals and opinions- you might learn something!
    Give everyone the benefit of the doubt that they are trying to help and have good intentions.
    Tough love can be a helpful kick in the pants, but "tough" does not equal "mean".
    Welcome all types of personalities and encourage people to be themselves.

    If you want to review our Community Guidelines in full, please view them here: http://www.sparkpeople.com/re
    so
    urce/motivation_articles.asp?R>id=349


    Please keep this in mind as you use the site and its resources. Several comments there have been removed by staff as they were not helpful or encouraging.

    Thank you ALL for your cooperation in helping keep SparkPeople a positive place for everyone!

    Coach Denise
    847 days ago
  • BARCELONAME
    sorry you got that kind of feedback.... you do not deserve it but I guess.... Haters have to hate..... I have to tell you.... I like how determined you are and how proud you are of your achievements.... I consider you an example to follow.... I started with the kettlebell training because of you... in my moments of doubt I find inspiration with people in SP that help me understand the journey of healthy living and better choices.... and you are one of the people. I respect you and your choices. All my love.
    847 days ago
  • MTN_KITTEN
    When we travel … free WiFi is just that … free IF you can get it. So it took me awhile to catch up on the going ons at Spark after being on the road for 3 months. I loved your Tough Love blog which was Voted Featured blog … it spoke to me in volumes. I even spoke about it in my own blog today not knowing what had happened to you.

    A reality check is what started many of us on the journey to healthy. We asked our self hard questions, did research and made promises to ourselves and sometimes others. It saddens me that some … mind you … some have negatively attacked a fellow Spark friend who has lost over 100 pounds who asked herself hard questions, followed your own plan and changed your mind set.

    Change your mind … and the rest will follow

    847 days ago
  • RADOOGA
    Hi. I don't get on here very much any more, as my Dad is very very ill, and I spend long days at the hospice. But I do get your AML emails, which I love. I don't know what this other person said, or why they said it, but just know that you are an inspiration, honest, a great cook, and you have my utmost respect...you inspired me to try kettlebells...I made it through half a class and nearly died. But I'm not giving up.
    Keep being marvellous. x
    847 days ago
  • TRAVELINGGURU
    When people are offended by inoffensive comments, *they* have the problem, not you. This applies to many things... :)

    Tell 'em to suck it... or just smile and wave...

    I think you're emoticon !

    KB
    847 days ago

    Comment edited on: 7/23/2016 8:08:05 AM
  • FOUNTOFBLESSING
    Unfortunately, I can believe people can behave that way. I have experienced it myself here at SP. Sorry for the emotional turmoil it causes. It's very stressful and hurtful.

    Personally, I absolutely LOVED that blog!!! I've been guilty of those, and that blog is so darn truthful!! As i said on that blog, words of wisdom. Wisdom comes from someone who's done it. You're emoticon In fact, I'll refer to that blog when I need to refocus!!!
    emoticon emoticon emoticon

    Now, when are you going to learn to snatch? emoticon
    848 days ago
  • _CYNDY55_
    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon
    848 days ago
  • DAWNSUCCESS
    I say again what I said in an earlier vlog of mine. People who are rude in the virtual world only demonstrate that they are small petty people who have no power in their real face-to-face lives. If they did not feel so helpless and powerless they would not stoop to leaving snarky comments in cyberspace. Cyber bullies are the classic "I have no control and feel worthless" trope.

    And I love you. And they are poopheads.
    That's a technical term I'm sure.
    emoticon
    848 days ago
  • LUCKEE40
    I don't understand people! I think your blog was very motivating!! Sometimes we need that tough love to get us off our a$$es, and it's too bad that people can't see that you were just trying to get the fire going! I think you look amazing and I guarantee there are about 200 +++ people on this website that agree! I do like that you are keeping the blog up and your head high! You rock lady!
    848 days ago
  • SIXFOOT1
    Unfortunately trolls at everywhere. Sorry to hear their hate has spewed in your direction. Good for you for standing your ground and not letting bullies get to you. You have inspired so many and will continue to do so by your strength of character.
    848 days ago
  • VALYNN26
    Some people just are not happy with themselves unless they're putting someone down. Its ridiculous. And its usually those type of people who can not take the tough love or criticism. Oh well, don't let them get to you. Those of us who know you know how far you've come, and how hard you've worked to get where you are. You are a great person and an inspiration! emoticon
    848 days ago
  • KAREN2LOSE55
    That's so unspeakable and so rude. I don't understand why people have to say such hurtful things. It must be that they're hurting themselves and think that with doing that, it makes them feel better. It makes them worse! It's actually very sickening!! I'm feeling so sorry for you, to have to even read comments like that. You are so beautiful and you better remember it, Gurl!!! Hugs to you!!
    848 days ago
  • ARAZA30
    Some people would rather attack other people's character because they're jealous. It's obviously these "Idiots" have failed in their efforts to reach their goals. Very, very sad.
    848 days ago
  • BONNIEMCC488
    It's awful how you're being treated but I LOVE how you're handling it and keeping your head held high. Just be you! You're a wonderful person and have achieved so much!
    848 days ago
  • LIVEDAILY
    There are people who are naturally negative. They thrive on it. When they put others down, it gives them a rush of power. Negative Nellies my Mom used to call them. Don't let them get to you!!
    emoticon

    Oh, and it's very interesting that the two most vitriolic of comments can't even be responded to because the spark pages of those two people are set to either private or closed. Figures.
    848 days ago

    Comment edited on: 7/22/2016 5:46:21 PM
  • KIMBERLY6664
    I read that blog it was a good blog.
    848 days ago
  • KATHYGBENNETT
    Way to go. There are rude, crude people in the world. Congratulations for keeping your weight off.
    848 days ago
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    Disclaimer: Weight loss results will vary from person to person. No individual result should be seen as a typical result of following the SparkPeople program.
 

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