Wednesday, September 5, 2012

What To Do With The Trolls?


A few readers emailed me yesterday to tell me how much they love hearing about my life..... and my boys, when I do talk about them here. They said they missed hearing about my boys antics. Yeah, I don't talk about my boys as much here these days. I suppose I have pandered to the 'trolls'.

One says that she is sick of me speaking about my boys as if they are 'perfect'....and that's not the half of her complaints about the way I live my life. Another stalks me on twitter and says the most vile things about my teenage son and his father. 'His'? abusive scripts run very similar to the 'Karen Rogers' stalker material I have been experiencing over the last year (although she has morphed into many anon and international! identities now). Maybe she's roped him in as she wasn't getting anywhere with her own antics (which included calling family services on me and trying to get my boys taken off me).



Why? Who are these people? .. and why does the way I live my life offend them so?

What do we do with them? Do we ignore them. as everyone is preaching, following the horrific Charlotte Dawson experience... or do we out them? I know who mine are. My protective friends have been the best online detectives and have found out everything about them.

"Don't feed the trolls?" By not feeding one of mine, she has resorted to absolutely desperate measures to get to me, to bring me down, to teach me a lesson? Why are these people so interested in seeing me fall?... in my personal life and my work. To be honest, it has changed the way I blog here... whether I consciously admit it or not.

All images via Pinterest

And I am ashamed to say that some of my responses to my trolls have been less than lady like. I have screamed and fought and name-called in my emails back to them. They have made me someone I am not, when fear for my family has gripped me and I have been desperate to identify them and scare them away. Once you have been trolled, you are never the same... this isn't as beautiful a place as it was 5 years ago when we were all friends. My words don't flow as freely here as they used to.

The reason I wrote this short post this morning?... I wanted to talk about my boys and what's happening in my life... but the thought of the troll onslaught stopped me. One is a mother at my boys' school. We're leaving the school next year. As Charlotte Dawson said on 60 Minutes the other night, 'You Win'.

So that's where I'm at, at the moment. You?

Photobucket

124 comments:

  1. Good heavens dear AM this is so mental. I just don't get these people at all. Trolls listen up - if you don't love this blog, don't read it. Simple!

    I hope you and all your boys have a super September and the new school year gets off to a great start! xxx

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  2. Switch off comments and take down your email then change it? Leave twitter? If its not serving you well then don't be part of it.
    I've been so inspired by the things you say about family meetings ans how you interact with your sons. Any one would know that no one is perfect.
    Don't let the haters stop you from shining.
    xo

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  3. Unbelievable, the lengths some people will go to because they are basically jealous (yes, have a few of them in my life as well)

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  4. Gosh A-M, this is so horrible.
    What sad, sorry people these must be.
    I would say "ignore" until it becomes nasty and personal. Your situation is criminal. I would take it to the Police. All social media users can be traced (via their URL's, etc). There have been many arrests now over cyber-bullying - with one in the US being Jailed for two years. Enough is enough. It has to end - and I think the only way is to make people think twice about the consequences of their actions. I think the way we, as adults address this issue now will help our children in the future.
    The internet can be a wonderful thing - bringing people together, helping people communicate, sharing ideas, etc - but the potential for this heinous activity is there....and it must be stopped. They can't win. x

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    1. My local police have all the details. I am just a voice in the wilderness. While it may be criminal, it probably isn't serious enough to warrant the precious resources. Xx

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    2. i know you are right, A-M, it just angers me so much! I had a situation last year with my 14 year-old daughter's mobile (really, really nasty texts. The sort that would make you shudder. A bit like Charlotte Dawson's) - and when I went to the Police they looked at me like I was wasting their time. We changed the number.
      I still feel like this area needs the Government's attention and resources (and in turn the Police's) otherwise it will get even more out of hand. Teenage cyber-bullying is so rife and common-place that they are immune to it.....well, they think they are. Teenage suicide and depression is on the increase and I am sure this problem holds much of the blame. x

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  5. How sad that these people have stilted your blog, even if it's just in the back of your mind. Why, I wonder, can't they stay away? I love your blog. Perhaps you could use this experience to make a difference in the blogging world. Surely some clever bod out there can develop a way that you can exclude certain posters. Please don't let the turkeys get you down. We supporters are stronger in numbers.

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  6. I would out them......except if you name and shame them you could end up in strife yourself, ironically......what kind of person does it take to do this to someone? I hope you know it's not you with a problem ;o)
    Tania xx

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  7. I remember when it happened to me having the realization "not everyone wants the best for me"....so odd because it's the opposite of how I try and live my life.
    I feel for you and miss hearing about your boys but protecting yourself is way more important than satisfying our curiosity:)

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  8. Omg! I feel so sad & angered for what you have gone through, it's outrageous that these people can put so much energy into being mean and nasty to such a kind, loving and generous person. I truly believe that it's time for these trolls to be outed and be held accountable for their bullying. I was listening to a discussion about this the other night and someone mentioned that the bullying is more prominent online because it's not seen as the "real world". Well I don't subscribe to that school of thought but, maybe if these trolls are held accountable it will remind them that they are infact in the "real world". I just don't understand, if they don't like Your blog why don't they just move on, I'm appalled at the amount of blogs being hijacked by these trolls! It's time for us all to take a stand against these pathetic trolls. Far out, they must be so boring in their everyday lives. Sorry this is so long A-M, I hope you have a lovely bully free day, cheers Robyn, x

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  9. WHOA!! I'm so shocked that I'm nearly at a loss for words! The hatred and vehemence that lives within them has got to be like cancer and eating them alive!

    For the safety of your boys, I need not hear another word about them. I know they will receive every protection within your family and friends.

    May you all be well, A-M.

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  10. how sad that it has come to this A-M. I did wonder why so few posts about your boys recently. These trolls are damaging your "brand", your "you", your image. By stopping you from being the person you were, who most of your followers( all except for the trolls) love. If they are changing the way you blog they are damaging/changing your blog. Your style may have drawn many here but love for your children, your open frankness and honesty is part of what keeps us here. It's part of what makes your blog what it is. Unique. Jealousy is such a destroying thing. I'm sorry that it has been an influence in deciding to remove your children from their beloved school. Of course keeping your children safe is of key importance.
    Please don't let the trolls get you down and win their spiteful jealous war.

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  11. I hate that blogging has come to this. I wish the sickos would just go away. Unfortunately we live in a fallen world so we are stuck with the evil. The way we react is the only thing we can do. I applaud you for what you have done and the way you have handled it. I would love to see more about your family here again. And I'm very much looking forward to seeing your new home being built and formed. So i really hope you can take these trolls down or make them go away somehow. I've had a very tiny bit of it myself - nothing at all compared to what you have but I do know it can be distressing at the least. Stay strong! You have a lot of us rooting for you!

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  12. I'm not really sure what to say A-M but I wanted to say something to show you I support you too. These poor misguided people are in the minority and more than anything it is sad that they feel they need to bring others down to justify themselves. I remind my children everyday that we should all treat others as we expect to be treated .. With respect. X

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  13. Hi A-M, I'm a long time reader, but never comment. I was just wanting to tell you that I like reading about your family and you. Your recent adventures in the USA, we're a real treat for me. As i have a health condition that prevents me from travelling I lived vicariously posts.
    It has made me feel sick reading about the abuse issues and I try to imagine what sort of lives these abusers live. I pity them.
    Keep up the good work A-M

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  14. I would actually look at civil action.

    I had a stalker. Not a troll, but a stalker. Two if you count her little puppet mate, but only one pulling the strings.

    I knew exactly who they are, I knew exactly what they were doing and what they tried to achieve.

    My problem in legal terms was that they did not affect our financial situation - which is one big necessity when it comes to a successful defamation suit.

    If these people are affecting "Your brand" as the previous commenter stated, you do have a bloody good case.

    Having been through what I did (3 years now, and they live in the small community I reside in), I know exactly how it affects you and the fear for your family. It took quite a long time before I realised my actions was what gave them power. And now everyone knows exactly what sort of people they are (by their own actions) and they are the ones affected and shunned.

    Stay strong. It is frightening how common this sort of thing is, and a true reminder of how many pathetic little nobodies there are craving some sort of limelight and unable to achieve it except via these sad actions. xx

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  15. Oh A-M. This is why I have been reluctant with twitter and don't show my kids. I don't want them to have to go through any of this. I'm so sorry to hear you are still having trouble.
    Let's hope it gets better and your blog reverts back to A-Ms blog.
    Ness xx

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  16. I'm reading this with my mouth hanging open.....gobsmacked! What were the grounds for calling family services? You made them do piano practice too often?!!! When I hear things like this it makes me want to run and hide. I'm sorry you have had to experience so much negativity. You must be a very strong person to deal with it so well. Thanks for sharing :-) Fiona

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  17. What a shame there are such vile people on this planet, what goes around comes around, but such a shame you cant be yourself, but your family is more important. Hope you can feel the goodness from those who leave nice comments and enjoy your posts :)

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  18. i say out them. let them feel and experience what its like to have the online community see what disgraceful human beings they are, Waht they are doing in one word is Bulling, its this social culture called trolling, that has some how made it acceptable, something you just have to put up with if you are online. what a load of rot!
    Out the bastards, i guarantee you, once all their friends and family know what they are up to behind closed doors, they would be mortified.
    Once they experience the trolling they would receive from you doing this, might kinda take the thrill out of it?
    Shame on them. You may think they have all the power, but so do you, use it to set some wheels in motion maybe these creeps might think twice if they know they can be retaliated against?
    On another note, i love your blog, dont stop beng you.

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  19. Frankly A-M, I'm wondering why you continue to reply to them. They are trolls. Ignore them. Don't feed them... as hard as that may be. All of the stalking etc says so much more about them than it does about you! They're only doing it because they are insecure and this behaviour makes them feel better about themselves: bring someone else down, elevate yourself. You know how it works.
    Lesley
    xx

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    1. I suppose I just realised today, this morning, when I didn't write the post that I wanted to write, that my blog is different now because of them. I can and do ignore them but everything is different now. It can't help but change you. Xx

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    2. And I suppose I just felt sad about it and wanted to share my feelings... about being sad.... about my blog, my voice... where it's all heading. I'm just sad today! A-M xx

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  20. How awful for you A-M. These people must really live small sad lives with nothing better to do than pick on innocent people just having fun blogging away!
    I love hearing about your boys and your life and it is sad that the trolls are stopping you, but I understand where you are coming from, I think I would be reluctant to put my family out there if something like that happened to me.

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  21. Beautiful A-M...the day of online trolls is almost over. They will be charged and made accountable through the court system. Thinking about you all the time...remain strong.
    Mrs B xxx

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  22. I guess it's easy for me to comment because I've never experienced something like this. Then again I don't blog or put myself 'out there' the way you do, and sadly this seems to be an unfortunate risk one takes.
    But my advice would be to stay true to yourself and know that you have way more cyber 'friends' than 'bullies'. They are in the minority. Whenever you see one of their comments just delete it straight away. Don't read it and don't reply or react to it. This just feeds the flame.
    Wishing you strength.

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  23. Sorry for not commenting in a little while, but I will for this. I will always defend you on this aspect.

    It astounds me how the Internet (and indeed the world) is losing its manners. And trolls, it seems, are the most ungracious, ill-mannered people of all. What sad, lonely, unfulfilled souls they must be? Who in their right mind acts this way? But their day will come. I love Madeleine Albright's comment: "There is a special place in hell for women who do not help other women".

    I agree with another of your readers. I would actually approach the mother at your school. Make sure you have two friends with you though. And be polite. Very polite. Ask her why she feels compelled to write / do such things? (And perhaps name them.) Ask her whether she really thinks that's the way a rational, polite, intelligent person would behave? And walk away with dignity before the conversation deteriorates. It might work. It might not. But at least then you've had your say.

    xx

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  24. Blogger provides the option to only take comments from ppl who register with you, doesn't it? Not actually a solution, because of the ppl with fake profiles etc, but an easy way to switch them off - no more anonymous. Not as conducive to a quick enquiry on the business side though. The harrassment is so dumb, your trolls might as well admit they are eaten up with jealousy; yes, you, if you are reading, go examine your own life and deeds. What you are doing is criminal, and extremely uncool.

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  25. Just so sad that you are moving your boys .......such a difficult thing to do in the best of circumstances. I'm sitting on the sidelines watching and listening (what else can I do?) while my sister deals with a very similar thing although the "troll" in this case is the ex husband. Verbal assaults of any form make the victim doubt themselves, question themselves, and can severely damage your self asteem .......all things the perpetrator wants....... they think they are somehow in control. You can never truly relax.......such horrible people who cant get on with their own lives. One of the most important things for you is to have people to talk too......people who can listen while you rant, cry, question........and hopefully become a stronger person. Hopefully one day they will go away. Some days are harder than others but hang in there.

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  26. I have to say that reading about your experiences has freaked me out a bit. The lengths people go to harm others for no reason (not there is ever a good reason) is scary. It's an attention thing, so don't give these trolls any.

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  27. What saddens me about these trolls is that they clearly have issues - why would you go out of your way to be so vindictive to someone you don't or barely know? If you don't like someone's blog, don't read it!! No one is forcing you!!

    I love your blog & I do love hearing about what the boys have been up to.

    Others should goget their own life & get out of yours x

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  28. I'm not a blogger, just a reader from the states, North Carolina to be exact. I LOVE reading about your beautiful boys and your parenting. That really makes your blog for me. I hate what some small minded people will stoop to in order to hurt someone else. I don't know how to stop them--I just wanted to show my support. Stay strong!

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  29. Am, I read your blog and never comment ever. Ever. I am a 29 year old corporate lawyer from Sydney and our lives are worlds apart. I like your interior design, I like the way you talk about your family, and you write really well.

    Because of your blog, I have donated money to a widow I've never met, donated more money to the Qld floods appeal that I would have otherwise...

    You help people. Ignore the trolls.

    Tell the school principal.

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  30. Your musings about life are always a delight to read A-M. You're honest, funny, clever and always entertaining. Shame on anyone who says otherwise.

    xx

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  31. I am honestly so shocked that you could have people like this treat you this way. I have read about these sorts of problems from yourself and others before but I think I naively didn't give thought to them or how destructive they might be. To now read that you are editing your writing in fear of their comments, to feel the need to change your son's school....well it's gone too far. On one hand I feel sorry for the perpertrator; they are obviously mentally unwell but you have a right to feel safe and happy in life and on your blog forum. It's time to take legal action A-M, notify the principal and advise other parents of this situation and person. Like an alcoholic or gambler, perhaps, in the long run, you'll be doing this person a favour. Good luck with whatever ways you use to resolve this, you have mine and clearly, many many other's support.
    x KL

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  32. I know some of my anonymous hate commentors- 1 lives locally, is married, is a parent and is in the same profession as me.

    I always wonder about their home lives and what has driven them to be so unhappy.

    I also wonder about the impact all this hatred and misery has on their relationships and parenting.




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    1. I imagine the impact on their home lives would be quite considerable. I had wondered if you too had received this type of garbage. It is beyond my comprehension that so called adults could behave like this. Jealousy must be eating them up. Keep going girls, I luff both of your blogs 11/10 and look forward to them. Have learned heaps and become braver in my decorating and dressing because of you and A-M. :-)))))))))))))))))

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    2. I can only reiterate Annice's sentiments. My two favourite bloggers! I feel sad and angry when I read about both of them being subjected to this vile treatment. It also scares me and, thus, it has made me discontinue my blog. I just don't want to deal with that sort of negativity. The blog world won't miss my words and besides, I comment enough on my two fav blogs.

      Begone, you horrible trolls! Back to the land of evil witches, goblins and beasties!

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  33. Oh A-M, I am so sorry that you have been the target of such horrible people and I am absolutely appalled that there are people low enough to do this to you or to anyone. It is terrible that they have affected the way you write but I think you are so strong to continue the way you have. I am not sure that I could. I love reading about your boys and their achievements. I think that talking about how well our children are doing is almost counter cultural, as a society we seem to thrive on each others miseries and don't share our blessings any where near enough. xx

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  34. This makes me desperately sad. My first reaction was to say 'ignore them' but then on reflection I thought about the hurtful messages my daughter received just because she is taller than most. It is not quite the same I know but it upset me no end. I don't have any advice on how to handle this however I will that karma is a wonderful thing. I have no doubt 'they' will get theirs one day.As my mum used to say 'what goes around comes around'.

    I am even more sorry for the boys and that this vicious behaviour has crept into their school life. Reading the exploits of your sons has always so enjoyable for me. The pride you have in them shines through your posts. I hope to run into you all one day at Miettes or Skipping Girls and tell them what a wonderful mother they have.

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  35. I imagine it's pretty hard to ignore them especially when one is a school mum. Sad isn't it when schools spend so much time with our kids talking about bullying in the playground and in cyberland yet it's one of the parents who is evil. Heaven help her own child/ren - such a great role model...not at all! Be strong A-M but be wise - do what is right for you and your family - if it means not sharing as much then that's fine - no-one deserves the hell you've been through. Troll is such a good term isn't it? Wish they'd dig seriously big holes and crawl back into them.

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  36. AM, the time has come for you to "name and shame" them. Give them a warning first but if they continue to target you, then you have every right to use your most powerful weapon - your blog.

    There are also a lot of media outlets interested in covering stories about prominent people who've been cyber-stalked. By outting your trolls, you're sending a stern warning that there are consequences for online actions.

    Ignoring the trolls is fine advice for people who've been subject to negative and nasty comments. But when they take action ie calling Family Services, they've crossed the line.

    Got get 'em.

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  37. I really hate the fact that some people have nothing better to do then try to bring other people down. Whatever happened to 'If you can't say anything nice, don't say anything at all.'.

    You're never going to 'beat' them unless you drop to their level, which ironically means they win, because they've manipulated you into something you are not (eg the return emails you mention).

    My advice is block and ignore. Block them from places where you can - twitter, facebook, put a filter on your email for their addresses. Yes they may change their usernames and addresses, but just keep blocking them. And where you can't block them, or something sneaks through - don't read once you get the gist its a troll, just delete and ignore.

    You have so many positive supporters and friends - just draw on that. You don't need to prove the troll's wrong, and you can't anyway. You can't change them, they are what they are and they love being trolls and nothing you will do will make them see reason - even the mother at your sons' school.

    Yes ignoring them will make them stamp their feet louder to be heard (like a 2 year old tantrum session) but then eventually - like a 2 year old - something/someone else will get their attention.

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  38. Hi A-M, it is such a shame that their behaviour has had such an impact on your free expression. I just don't understand trolls. I read through some of Charlotte Dawson's Twitter feed and was incredulous that people are like that. They are gutless wonders who use the anonymity of the computer screen to give them some sort of bravado they don't have in person. Stay strong A-M. Vx

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    1. yeah AM, and the 60min show had an expert saying there is no way they would say this kinda stuff in real life. They do it because they are sitting behind a PC in their bedroom, complete safety. Once you out them, they ain't so safe anymore. I would def post on your blog once and for all, everything that woman you are talking about, and all her comments/emails to you (to & from etc) You know I hate it when you speak of these trolls, but if you must, hells bells luv, put it all up! Be done with it... :)

      (I'm not sure why I'm ending this with a smile... :/

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  39. Oh A-M, I remember thinking when I read the great news about your family becoming one again, "Oh no the infamous troll is going to ramp things up, they won’t be happy about this news"
    While I can’t understand the reasons behind why someone would do this, I guess they must just be really unhappy with their own lives and don’t want to see anyone else happy either.
    I think you should dedicate a blog post to them. Put up copies of all their nasty emails, blog comments, and twitter stuff-every nasty thing they have ever sent to you along with a timeline of what they have said and done.
    You are totally within your rights to publish anything that has been left on your blog or sent to you in an email. You are also within your rights to put into the public domain their name and details. The law says that if information is publically available and in the public domain then you can’t get into trouble for re publishing it.
    Also, if you have proof of who this person is and you can back up all your info with facts, printouts etc then the other person cannot come after you legally. You just have to make sure that you can back up everything you say.
    I would be inclined to gather all the information together in one place and write a really log blog post outlining the history of this troll including their name, age etc. Send it to them and tell them that if they ever make contact with you again, either via email, on your blog, on twitter or via a third party or a third party blog you will publish everything you have on them. They could try and take you to court but that would just get their actions out there even more in the public domain and the onus is on them to prove they have been wronged. So long as you have kept all evidence of their activities and it can be traced back to them without a doubt then they can’t do anything at all about it.
    Time to fight back A-M. Being the nice guy has not gotten you anywhere. You need to show them that you will not stand for it any longer.

    Good luck. xxoo

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  40. Seriously let me at them!!
    I've got your back 100%
    xxx

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  41. I was chatting to some bloggy mates during the week and we all agreed that we were starting to 'Edit" our writing. Which is just so silly, when you really think about it. I am back with a mundane vengeance!

    I think when you edit what you really want to say because you are scared of the "moronic backlash by sad little folk" then it takes some of the fun out of blogging. I got a doozy on twitter the other day and I wrote back "See you later... Alligator" and deleted and blocked. FELT GOOD and I laughed at the thought of him (always a him with me... I don't know why..) getting that message and realising that I was LAUGHING at him. Anway darling AM, work out a policy, it helps to write it down, and action each trolling behaviour accordingly.

    It works for me. And get back to your kick ass blogging. x

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  42. I still find it completely mind boggling as to why a person who apparently hates the way you live your live, talk about your life, blog about your life spend all their time and effort still read and comment on your blog. These are jealous, insecure nasty people who do not have lives and/or are really jealous that you seem to have a life. We all choose to live our life and our families life because we are in charge of it and it is no body's business to tell you how to live it, what to write about or in fact say nasty things about it. As for calling child services, seriously....how nasty are these people. Personally I think ignoring them all is the only way to not give them power. They say things, they want it to hurt you and they want you to inter-act. By engaging with them it does give them power. I like the comment above that you take 2 friends and confront the mother at school in a professional, unemotional, calm way because when they are in life not behind the computer screen it is a different story. Just have to think about 5 year olds....... when they want a biscuit before dinner, you tell them once that they can't have a biscuit before dinner because they won't eat their dinner. End of story.......you do not have to keep engaging in saying the same thing 5 different ways when they say "but I'm hungry" but "dinner's not going to be ready for a while". If they hate you, hate your life, hate what you are writing about - THEN DON'T READ IT......... it's not rocket science. We all have people whom we don't particularly like but usually we just avoid them, we don't get involved in their lives. That's silly. I would stop engaging with the trolls because it feeds the fire because they like the attention. It's you and your family and friends and people who are kind reading your blog that are here for you for the right reasons. IGNORE those LOSERS.......

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  43. I am a big fan of revenge here A-M, but I will not go as far to incite this. It would most likely backfire on me anyway.

    I am astonished at the lengths a psychologically disturbed person ('troll' is certainly a soft word for these people) will go to in order to damage another person.I think Charlotte D. has been brave in outing them and perhaps her actions may allow some legal precedents to be set. Who knows?

    Your boys are sweethearts and I would not blame you for never mentioning their antics again in order to protect them. It is a good lesson for them about human nature and how any moron with a mouse can have a nasty opinion.

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  44. Bloody Hell mate, don't you dare let them think they have 'won' - geez this isn't a war zone. They are pyscho nut cases who should be outed in a public forum, & if you are feeling particularly feisty, publish their comments without a comment, it's a mighty empowering thing to do. I always do & they never bother again. Meet them head on, don't play their game & they'll soon slink off back to the rock they crawled out from. Onwards & upwards, stuff 'em.
    Millie xx

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  45. The Internet and Social Media is the way of the future and unfortunately we are in a relatively new world where laws and precedence are only just starting to take effect. So switching off or not participating is just delaying the inevitable need to come back and use the Internet again, no matter how hard we try they are not going away so we need to find actual solutions.
    Personally, I think URL'S of Trolls should be registered with a spam website if reported as bully's, trolls, degenerative's who clearly have such an obscured take on the world they believe we should all live like them.
    Crazy people who think they are right in the way they live and are godlike to think they should be influential in how you live yours.
    Calling social services takes a person so sad in themselves that they need to bring others down lower than them, We may need to send them for some counselling to get their happiness back, maybe some undiagnosed depression on their behalf. Not an excuse for them at all though.
    I say out them in their own sneaky ways. Secretly email us all with their details and we can slowly spider web leak their identity to hopefully people who know them and can help them find happiness in their lives again.
    If we can be effective in any way please let us all know. Don't think of it as stooping, think of it as fighting fire with fire....and sometimes you have to be cruel to be kind.
    We all have blogs or social media outlets, that's how we found you, I would put 2 and 2 together and assume these trolls have something similar. I would love to make sure I am not following or interacting in support of you. I am sure everyone that follows you would love to unfollow this person....I think I am starting to rant I better stop.
    Happy to help in any way you need us. ;-)

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  46. I agree with what Millie just said. I would republish their comment and put their isp address up for all to see. There is no such thing as anonymity on the internet. They can and will be traced. xx

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  47. "Rise above it" my granny used to say, and I think that's the only way, after all, you wouldn't like to be like them would you? I would certainly let the head teacher know, and if no action is taken, that's another reason for brushing the dust of the place off your feet. You have your family, your talent and your future, focus on that, and if you have to blog differently, that's just one way of protecting what is dear to you.

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  48. Hi A-M,

    Just a Brizzie girl wanting to add my voice to those who support. Why do they want to bring you down? Well, status provokes a powerful threat response (we know this from the emerging neuroscience). Our lives relative to your life, our children relative to yours, our houses..... The anonymity of the web then makes is safe to attack in response to the threat. Seth Godin tells is that when we get the benefits and joys of sharing through our social media, we accept that we give hundreds of people a buzzer to give us little electric shocks. We must make ourselves resilient or opt out. I hope for you (and for us!) that you don't choose the second.

    Bat on, I say.

    Kate

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  49. Oh A-M, I'm saddened to read this post from you... again. Haven't those trolls anything better to do with their time? Apparently not.

    One thing I believe is we give people permission to treat us the way that they do. If you don't like how they are treating you, then change yourself (because really that's the only thing you can change). It sounds like you have changed... you moved away from posting about your boys and sharing the things that make you and this blog what it is. And that's a shame.

    I think you've tolerated more than enough and the reality is, this blog is a "safe" place. 99% of your readers know the real deal... they see how much you love your boys, they root for your happiness. I think if you outted those trolls here and held them accountable for what they've done, then you would get nothing but support from your readers. Life is too short to not be happy. I certainly understand you want to protect your boys, but there is also a value in teaching them to stand up for what they believe in and not fear the opinions of those who don't matter. Stay strong! xoxo.

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  50. I am constantly amazed at the lows people will stoop to. I am disgusted it has gotten to the point that you can not share stories here with us, and feel you have to move your boys to a different school. Haters are going to Hate. However the majority of us love your blog and I hope that you feel that overwhelming majority. I dont comment often, or regularly, but I do read every post and I support what ever action you feel you need to take, or not take, against these trolls. People need to be accountable for their actions. Vicki

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  51. Hi A-M,

    Just a Brizzie girl wanting to add my voice to those who support? Why do these people want to bring you down? We know from neuroscience that status provokes a powerful threat response. My life relative to yours, my children and yours, my house.... The anonymity of the web makes it so much easier to give way to our need to attack in response to the threat. Thank goodness most of us seem more evolved, but there will always be a powerful few. Seth Godin tells us playing in this space is like giving hundreds of people a small buzzer to give us electric shocks. We can be resilient or we can choose to opt out. I hope for you (and for us!) that you don't choose the second route.

    Bat on I say. Kate

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  52. A Mother at your Boys school - seriously?!!?! I hope she hangs her head in shame each time you walk past like the coward and thug that she is. What a pathetic example of a parent she is. I'm sure you've spoken to the school Principal about her and I hope her children haven't offended or hurt your Boys at all as a consequence. It's ashame you have to move them - do they know the reasons they have to move? Such a difficult subject to discuss with kids. Cyber/Social Media Bullying or Trolling is getting a bit out of control and it's frightening. I love your blog, your way with words, your love for your Boys, Family, Life and Architecture - keep going AM, don't let them beat you down, stand up we will support you.

    V x

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  53. Dear AM,
    I feel so sad that you and your boys are subjected to such unforgivable behaviour - you are such a wonderful person who brings so much sunlight to many people, every day, with every post.

    Christine xo

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  54. I'm shocked to hear about your 'trolls' - I didn't really even know what that was until the past week. Women can be vile to each other, I'm not sure why, no doubt it's something to do with envy. I don't know why you're such a target, you're hardly writing anything controversial. Imagine the messages poor Julia Gillard must receive. Have you thought about publishing their nasty comments - we'll sort them out. Leave it to your readers. x

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  55. I don't agree that they are just "psycho nut cases" as Elements above says.... I guess some are but, other mother's at school must just be bitter and twisted, unhappy people. I suppose we've all struck them in some way, shape or form, either in the school yard as kids or at school pick up as adults/parents. They're in the workplace, they're everywhere, including cyberspace. Technology hasn't created these people or their behaviour, just amplified it and given them a voice and the capacity to remain anonymous. I take my hat off to anyone who blogs/writes about their lives - I would love to do it but don't have the guts to put myself (and my family) out there. As a popular blogger, I suppose you have to consider that your kids are now the kids of someone in the public eye. Imagine what celebrities and politicians are putting up with? I wonder how they deal with it.
    I dp agree with one of the comments about how, in the scheme of things, we are in the infancy of cyberbullying and how we handle these things now will affect what sort of a world we are passing onto our kids. Our laws have not kept pace. The police think they have better things to do but these sort of attacks are real, and can have real consequences. I don't have any answers but you have to do what feels right and is best for your family.

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  56. Hi AM

    I just wanted to say that I love reading your posts (I bought some lights from you a while back and have been meaning to send you a photo now they are up).. I think you are a brave and courageous woman to keep posting about your life...It brings to mind the wonderful talk by Brene Brown:

    http://www.ted.com/talks/brene_brown_on_vulnerability.html

    The people who write such horrible comments are only hurting themselves in the long term as to intentionly hurt others is very damaging to the soul. I think the best path is to the ignore/block them and just keep posting! Leanna xo

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  57. Hi A-M
    It sickens me to read what you and your family have been put through. I'm with Millie. Out them. Publish their comments for all to see.
    Take care.
    Sharyn

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  58. Hi A-M, I read every day but very rarely comment, but I just can't stop thinking about your post today. I thought I'd put together a little Troll Translater for you.

    Troll "Your children are *unpleasant thing*
    Translates "I am so afraid I am failing my children because I don't do what A-M does"

    Troll "Your child & husband are *unpleasant thing*"
    Translates "Oh god, my husband has no relationship with our children at all. I wish he'd step up"

    Troll "Look at you thinking you are *unpleasant thing*"
    Translates "I'm so fat, why can't I make more effort to put myself together"

    As for having to move your boys from their school, I am shocked, I know how much you love that school. One piece of advice - its not always the best way to keep a dignified silence, sometimes people really really should be called out.
    Sending strength and good wishes your way.

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  59. Hi AM - I was really sad to read your post this morning. I've been following since the Magazine article about your house and whilst I don't read everything you write (time poor Mum with 2 boys myself!) when I do get to catch up I really enjoy what you have to say. I'm so sad for you and wish I could make it all better. I fear for our children - sure we had school yard bullying but nowadays it's mental warfare at its worst.

    I think all of your positive followers will understand if you no longer talk about your boys but it is the biggest thing in your world and would be an obvious piece of the AM puzzle missing.

    Hang in there - I'm sorry this is happening to you and many many others. Remember to ask your community for help should you need it - I think you'd be surprised who comes to your aid.

    Chin up.

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  60. This post and the recent events with Charlotte have highlighted how sheltered my experience of the internet. It really does sadden me that such hideousness is out there, especially when it can be unprovoked. I honestly have no idea what I'd do in your situation, but I'd be inclined to call the police and remove myself from where-ever the trolling is happening. If social media were making me unhappy/scared/worried I'd get rid of it in a second.

    Good luck, I really hope you find some solution. I also hope our laws start to take such behaviour seriously. Take care :)

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  61. Shakespeare summed up the characteristics of a troll when he wrote:

    “Marry, sir, they have committed false report; moreover they have spoken untruths; secondarily, they are slanders; sixth and lastly, they have belied a lady; thirdly, they have verified unjust things; and, to conclude, they are lying knaves"

    Here here Shakes. He always found just the right words didn't he.

    What a sad day for you, your readers and the offspring of the trolls you talk about. Mothers at school? Heartbreaking. How unfortunate that those few pesky bull-dogs can bring about such disruption. Hang in there. I love your blog and read it feverishly every day. I’m going to start wearing a "Free A-M t-shirt" - anyone else want one?

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  62. Shakespeare summed up the characteristics of a troll when he wrote:

    “Marry, sir, they have committed false report; moreover they have spoken untruths; secondarily, they are slanders; sixth and lastly, they have belied a lady; thirdly, they have verified unjust things; and, to conclude, they are lying knaves"

    Here here Shakes. He always found just the right words.

    What a sad day for you, your readers and the offspring of the trolls you talk about. Mothers at school? Heartbreaking. How unfortunate that those few pesky bull-dogs can bring about such disruption. Hang in there. I love your blog and read it feverishly every day. I’m going to start wearing a "Free A-M t-shirt" - anyone else want one?

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  63. As for old KR I just look at my bogan (albeit expensive) faux flowers now and laugh. She would be horrified if she saw just how bogan I've become.
    Hah.
    xx
    Which reminds me I'd better go give them a dust...

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  64. Hi AM, I love your blog so please don't let the minority affect you! I know easier said than done. These people must actually suffer a mental illness, their behaviour is not normal, it is beyond bullying. Keep doing what you are doing, collate the nasties they send you, maybe even have a generic reply for them thanking them for the evidence you are collecting against them. Times are changing people think they are invincible behind the computer screen but its only a matter of time till there will be dedicated police departments set up to combat these crimes. xx

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  65. PS - I hope you are making it clear to the Principal of your school why you are leaving. The apple doesn't fall far from the tree so the school should probably be keeping an eye on the offspring of this horrid human.

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  66. Oh AM. This is terrible.

    I think we all know why these trolls do this. They are unhappy, and feel inadequate and they want to make other people unhappy. The problem is I think that different tactics will work differently depending on their motivation. I think the idea of publishing their comments is a good one. BUT for some trolls, that just gives them the attention they crave. For others, ignoring them will have an impact and get rid of them. I think the mother at your school is a separate situation again, and I think you should confront her.

    I do not think you should publish anyone's name or details, even if you are sure..

    If you accept these people are bullies, then the accepted advice for dealing with bullies is not to ignore, but to say 'Stop it I don't like it'. You have done that now, and I think from now on you should rise above it, as they say. As is also said, 'Living well is the best revenge.'

    Stay strong.


    xoxox

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  67. You are amazing to have continued to blog. I don't think I could have. These people are just disgusting and vile. It sickens me.

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  68. AM I love reading your blog, I never comment, however today I feel that I should. It simply is jealously that leads people to be cruel and unkind, they have nothing in their lives so feel it necessary to dog on others to make them feel better about themselves. Don't let them win !

    Looking forward to seeing your new house unfold !

    Cheers Fiona

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  69. From an everyday without fail reader, and seldom commentator. You and your loved ones are in my prayers tonight.

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  70. OMG,you've made my day. Not because you have been subjected to this kind of rubbish but because it makes me feel relieved to hear that my own experience of people like this is not the only one.

    The woman in question made a lives a misery, labeling our 8 year old daughter a 'bully' and telling the school community she had a restraining order on her. Don't start me on the outright lies she told. However we survived, but you're right - it turned us into people we didn't want to be.

    On the flip side,you are clever, talented and stylish, and if your nemesis is anything like ours, the complete antithesis of these people.

    We are so pleased that you continue to share your life with us, despite your awful experiences.

    Jude

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  71. A-M I'm so sorry you're sad today , but it is understandable as we know your love for the school, and in sharing your life with us. I love hearing about your boys but perhaps this is a good decision to give them back some anonymity and take them out of the firing line . Your life is turning a new corner now, a joyous exciting one. When I first discovered your blog a long time ago in another life, it was primarily about your house project. Now you have another fabulous journey to take us on with your new property. That, and your creative energy and style , will be more than entertaining enough for me. Keep on keeping on, don't feel guilty about taking out some of the more personal stuff. Don't look at moving schools as 'losing' , but as choosing to place your children's well being first. And that's a brilliant mum!
    Thinking of you,
    Lisa x

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  72. I am very sad for you. Especially as an evil one is so close and not anonymous on the other side of the world. I believe that the motivation for these nasty acts come from a whole plethora of issues and you will never know how to deal with each one, cos they will all be different. So you have to respond in a way that feels right to you, actions that you are happy to live with and make you feel good about yourself. For me that would just be deleting and not giving attention to it, hence why all my comments have to be approved.

    I hold faith that the system will tighten up in the punishing of these vile acts. We are starting to see action due to online bullying of children and the resulting suicides. As an educator I am always, always, always reminding students of their digital footprints and that they are never, ever really anonymous. If they want to live in this modern society and play with these tools, they have to protect themselves from nasties and behave in a civilised manner and do the right thing online. We have had Police come and speak to the students en mass about how it is an offence to bully in real life and online, they have indeed acted on individual reports by parents and schools of online assaults- perhaps we are luckier in this regard in the bush.

    I am constantly horrified and astounded by the unending reports of uncivilised, murderous and assaulting behaviour by seemingly 'normal' people all over the world. So even though there may be laws against crimes- people will still break them, because the issue is deep and sick.

    WE all must NEVER forget that there are some very, very dangerous, drug affected, mentally ill and absolute crackpots walking amongst us, putting on great big acts of normalcy, fooling most. It is no different in the online world, in fact I think that they might think it is a free playground to spread their evil weirdness. But, they have digital footprints and they can't really hide forever and they will get their come uppence. Just look at how they have caught pedophiles and that guy who put the bomb around the girl in Sydney. Be warned trolls, they are coming for you one day. I for one can't wait!

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  73. Hi A-M :) I fully understand the hurt that this kind of thing causes. The feelings of self doubt, the second guessing everything you say and do, feeling muzzled and censored and unable to just be yourself. Having said that though, you're not alone and your supporters overwhelmingly outnumber the haters, so it would be a real shame if you lost your 'you-ness' because of this. If nothing else, don't let these losers take that away.
    Take care
    Cas x

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  74. Hi AM,
    I never write comments so this is the first time! I LOVE reading your blog mostly about your boys and your life in addition to the decor. You just need to stop responding to those bullies...listen to what we advice our kids. The Trolls are looking for attention and why would you want to give attention. Keep your face to the sunshine so you don't see the shadows.

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  75. It is ridiculous, your blog is your place and a place you should feel comfy. I feel sad for you too but ban them on twitter and you could even try switching off comments for a while. I bet you wouldn't even see a drop in traffic x

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  76. Hi A-M I have never commented before but I am appalled that people would say such nasty things and someone who knows you and your boys from school!!!! I specifically came into your blog to read what you posted about fathers day and what your boys did for the new/old hubby!! I am sad for these morons that have nothing better to do, I personally would out them and their comments!! I hope you go back to blogging about the boys soon :-)

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  77. I've probably only commented once or twice A-M, but I just wanted to add my love of your blog. I can't imagine what drives someone to say terrible things, particularly from what must be well educated people by the sounds of it. FF receives them as well?! I can't believe it!! You both add a wee bit of sunshine and joy to my day, every single day. If there isn't a post, I'll re-read yesterday's which always renders the same result - a big smile. Thank you for continuing through the muddy waters of blogging for us!

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  78. I find it amazing how the internet and perceived anonymity of it all, provides people with a voice that would otherwise be too gutless to walk up to you and tell you what they really think. "Troll" has never been a more appropriate word. How you deal with it, I'm not sure. I'm saddened to hear how frequently this bullying occurs. And I know how upset you must feel with pulling your boys from a school you love, but know that real men are not made by attending a school, men are made by mothers who are caring, nurturing, supportive and independent; mothers like you x

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  79. A second weigh in....sorry. Am still thinking about you and this bloody awful situation. I came across this quote via La Dolce Vita.
    http://paloma81.blogspot.com.au/2012/09/this-weeks-quote.html
    Hope it speaks to ypu as it did me.
    x KL

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  80. Sending positive & supportive thoughts your way.

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  81. Whilst I don't believe they should be named and shamed as you either end up like Charlotte Dawson or Marieke Hardy, who had to pay thousands when she named the wrong person! I also don't believe that they should be allowed to interfere in how you want to live your life or run your business so my 'tuppence' worth is ignore, block, and continue to enjoy the company of those who like and admire the way you have coped during the good and the difficult times. You do know that if you ever need to talk that I am here for you and always will be. Big hugs my pet xxx

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  82. On all the other blogs I follow that show their kids, none of them bring this issue to light. Their Trolls, never get any attention, NEVER. They get no satisfaction or power or spotlight. Negative attention is still attention and these people are just wanting attention any way they can get it. Out of the thousands of people who love your blog, this very few should not get your attention or your energy. So many fabulous celebrities get hate mail and messages, now you are also in that league. I know this is easy for me to say, since I have not had this experience, but you have way more followers than I. I love how your blog lets me see how Australians live their life and it has helped to share it with my husband and son for our future move. Remember what Deepak said,"What other people think of you, is none of your business". Love you, Heidi

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  83. I've commented before when this issue was brought up last - please, please seek legal help for this situation. It is totally unacceptable and as others have noted absolutely vile that you & your lovely family be subjected to this abuse. I cannot believe that when on those hideous trolls is a mother at the boys' school! Shocking! I feel sorry for her son that she is his role model.

    I really enjoy your blog and honestly, I'm expecting my first child in November - its been a wish of mine for as long as I've read this blog (2+ years) that my child is as kind and loving as yours.

    Keep your chin up & know that there's a whole big group of us around the world that support you.

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  84. I love reading your blog AM, you spread a lot of sunshine around and it's horrible that you, or anyone should have to put up with this. I just wanted to add my voice of support to you. I hope these people who are so dissatisfied with their own lives that they feel jealous of yours, don't get the better of you. Keep us all updated with this issue - you have so much support here.

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  85. This is cyber bullying A-M, plain and simple. And no matter the age, bullies are just as mean, spiteful and hurtful as ever. I've always adopted to go my own path. I say what I want to say and do what I want to do because I am me. If they don't like what I have to say that is their problem, not mine. I suggest you keep being you A-M....be fabulous, be a mom, be a blogger, be a friend. Don't change one thing about what you do. Haters will keep hating but that's not your cross to bear.

    XX,
    Andrea

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  86. AM...this is awful behavior from that mother. If you have, I hope, informed the schools head she should be the family leaving the school. Your guys are such good and loving boys thanks to your example, they should be staying in their school. And the school should want a family like yours.

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  87. Sorry, second comment on this, but I've been thinking about what's been happening to you. You are definitely not alone - have you seen what's been happening to Sandra Reynolds over at The $120 Challenge? http://120dollarsfoodchallenge.com/2012/05/29/just-keep-walking/
    You are part of a big blogging community - is there some sort of support group? Maybe brainstorm some ideas for what to do? Workplaces and schools have bullying policies, is there something similar for bloggers? Seems to me if you all came up with a "policy" it might be a start? And, on reflection, I agree with many of your commentors that ignoring trolls by switching off comments and shutting down your social media sites (for a while at least) will remove the trolls' tools of trade. Just a thought x

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  88. A-M - jealous, bored, insecure people are toxic. So are single white females, I've just culled a few from my life and to say it is liberating is an understatement. I would suspect your trolls are jealous of you, your lovely boys and your success, are clearly insecure and have way too much time on their hands. I would love to tell you not to let them dictate the way you behave, but I think you have to determine what is necessary to keep you and your family safe, and importantly to feel safe. There are lots of us on here who love your blog, so just don't go away altogether.

    K
    The Blog a House Built

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  89. I have an image of a troll being an ugly looking little creature who lives under a bridge and harrasses billy goats :) Seriously though this needs to stop. Cowardly people who hide behind their computers, in supposed annonminity, have to be responsible for their actions and realise there are consequences for such vile behaviour.
    I would definitely seek legal advice about the possibility of outing them and bringing their disgraceful behaviour to light for all to see. I think it is you that should be calking social services, is someone so filled with hate fit to be a mother? I really feel for the child of the mother you mention at your sons school, imagine being brought up in such negative energy.
    Sometimes it becomes impossible to ignore bullies and it is necessary to stand up to them and call their bluff. They are cowards so shining a light on them usually makes them scurry back into the shadows.
    Hold your head high and take note of the tremendous love and support you have from your followers. It far outweighs the negativity and nastiness of the trolls...how that must irk them :) xxx

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  90. It saddens me that there are these faceless, cowardly nobodies with nothing better to do but to make someones life as miserable as theirs!! AM, stand tall, be proud and headbutt these no-bodies. DON'T let them win! They are just gutless, miserable low life!!
    I hope they are reading this and I hope they have a miserable day even more than normal(if that's possible).
    If you were brave enough, perhaps you should print one of their comments for everyone to see and let them feel the pain and hurt they give you. I am sure your readers would let them have it!!! I certainly would.

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  91. AM –
    Feel the love! Your blog is beautiful; you are very loved; your family is wonderful.
    Your trolls are sad, deluded people – they are NOT feeling the love…
    xx Marguerite (sailing2xs)

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  92. I think you know that the vast majority of your readers love what you write. The 14 year old girl in me wants you to publicly name and shame the bullies, but I know that would make us as bad as these sad women.

    I so enjoyed sharing your New York trip, made me feel like I was travelling with you.

    Julie Q

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  93. AM, please, would you OUT THEM for us nosey people (like me!)
    If you don't write about your boys, we know just by your other posts how well things are going for you, I'm happy to get that rather than nothing.
    Hang in there, ignore them.
    It is their hang up, don't let it be yours.
    :)
    XXXXXXXX
    Annie

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  94. Oh, I am so sorry that you've had to deal with such bad people.
    I've enjoyed your blog! You are so talented in so many ways!
    It must be an extreme case of jealously to keep those trolls at their worst. Shame on them!



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  95. Hi, I too just want to add my support for you and your family. I really appreciate that people like you put so much effort into creating a blog that I get to read at home for free, whenever I like and for you to now be subjected to this kind of assault is appalling.

    I have been deeply shocked by what has happened to Charlotte Dawson and now to hear your story - well what can I say - it is just truly awful. When people invade your lives like this it definitely changes you and no matter how much you think that it is their problem, their just jealous, etc, etc, it is very difficult to not feel hurt deeply.

    I hope that things improve soon, and that you can continue to be the person that you truly are.

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  96. I only just recently found your blog through Faux Fuschia's blog and love it already.

    I am so sorry you and your family have had to deal with these insane trolls. I think kids are a souce of immense happiness so it is only natural to often talk/blog about them. It is a tradgedy that you feel you can't talk about your sons the way you would want to on your own blog anymore and I hope in my heart of hearts that you get through that soon. Don't let them win here. Your blog is your own domain. You're the Queen Bee here and by the looks of these comments you have an army of people who love your blog.

    Stay Happy and Keep Smiling, it's the best way to beat these trolls down.
    xx
    BB

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  97. Dear A-M,

    Karma will get the trolls if nothing else does. They are obviously unhappy souls who are miserable with their own lives. The fact that you know one of them makes it all the more difficult.

    Regardless of them, live your life and be happy.

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  98. Dear A-M...All I can say is JEALOUSY!!! That's wht I told my beautiful daughter who was bullied at school because of her good looks and that's waht I think it all boils down to with you too! TRY to ignore (easier said then done when it's your family). Their lives must be sooooo unhappy to resort to this. Wishing all good things for you and your beautiful family. Sandy x

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  99. It is terribly sad. Why do trolls troll? They are internet bullies and bullies bully because they think it gives them power. Trolls and bullies feed on perceived weakness. They often have social and emotional problems, they have low self-esteem and low self-confidence. They feel powerful if they are aggressive towards someone they see as an easy target. And their behaviour is abusive especially if it is repetitive. We can defend ourselves against bullies with self-confidence. Wear it like an amour and keep the trolls away. I love your blog and I hope all the supportive followers comments buoy you up.

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  100. This is so tough, it is people like you who have helped the blogging community in Australia connect but you have every right to feel sad and attacked and for what? for sharing so much in this community... It's not right. Thank-you for sharing though, we need to know I think that this is happening. People with personality disorders seek validation through conflict...when no-one in their "real" world can "feed" them they seek out others to help them exist and so someone who blogs in a way that you feel you know them is the perfect target. I really wish this was not the case I really wish it wasn't you or anyone that was targeted. I have had recently my best friend targeted by an old school "friend" who 20 years later attempted to destroy her via facebook and we sat back powerless to do anything. All I could say was "Live well" as the best revenge but it seems really lame to say this cause it really hurts... Please take care of your family and yourself..

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  101. Hi AM...I just can't believe the level of craziness that someone would be at to do this to you, or to anyone. The internet does seem to enable some ghastly behaviour. So depressing and vile. I wonder what the solution is? I guess people will end up turning off comments on their blogs which sort of removes a lot of the point of having one. Sorry you've been subjected to this :-(

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  102. Nooooo A-M, Nooooo!!!!! I outted mine and continue to do so! It shut them up as it should...they don't like being named and shamed. My Blog my stuff, don't like it, don't read it! I will continue to OUT them too! Don't change who you are darling for the few bullies!!!! They know they've won!!! Who are these people...and why should they have so much power over anybody! They are full of venom and spite and misery! So bitter and twisted and obviously NOT enough good stuff going on in their own lives that they feel the need to bash you verbally! Sad! Let 'em be sad little creatures! STAND UP and be counted my girl! You don't deserve to be shouted down, or to hide your glorious light for your children under a bushel! Don't let them win!! NOT NOW NOT EVER!!! Fight back we must!!!!! Be brazen! It nearly kills them!!!!!!

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  103. This is very sad. It is very discouraging to think that the untalented and small minded minority can diminish the joy for everyone else. Sorry to hear you are feeling miserable about the stupid comments, but hope it doesn't really change your blog, which I adore!

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  104. In some weird way I think that trolls also enjoy reading the outraged reactions of people like us. ...Something to do with control issues and a superiority complex perhaps? For this reason I usually don't jump on the bandwagon but having read all the comments above, many of which advocate naming and shaming, I have to say that *seriously*, I'd hold back on that. Yes it's your blog but the whole of the internet is a very public platform, open to one and all. I think you could end up in very hot water. As the police are aware of the situation, but reluctant to do anything, I'd now take some legal advice. If this has led you to consider moving your boys from a school where they are happy and thriving then it needs some action. I'd also question the mindset of these people, i.e. what kind of parent behaves in such an underhand, nasty and Machiavellian way? So, ironically, maybe they could do with a few family counselling sessions? I think the school might be interested to have a 'heads up' on what is going on here but - again - I'd take the advice of a cool-headed lawyer first, lest it is you who ends up sounding like the complete nutter. I'm sure the words of a good lawyer will both empower you and put this all into manageable proportion again. x

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  105. I am not sure you should name them A-M. It could create more retaliation against your children. Are your boys leaving the school because of this woman, or because of your wanting to move to a new house (cottage)?. Unfortunately, anytime you are in the public eye, it opens the door for scrutiny and mean behavior.

    I am happy for you that you have reunited with your husband. I also reunited with mine after a rough patch.

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  106. I have been reading your blog since I came across it 3 1/2 yrs ago when we moved up from Sydney.
    One of the reasons I agreed to come here in the first place was to get away from the bully horrible mothers that I new through my kids school.
    I remember as a teenager that all I wanted to do was to be an adult so I could escape the hideous behavour of teenage girls.
    I was in shock one night when I was babysitting and the parents came home from a function and brought with them another couple.
    The mother who I knew very well and her guest sat down and started to tear shreds off some poor lady that they had been with that evening. I had a sudden realization that maybe it didn't end out of the school yard.
    These people are such cowards. I bet if you came face to face with them they would crumble, I did it once to a person who was supposed to be a friend and was speaking very badly about my husband.. Not so brave when challenged.
    People who don't approve or like the blog need to just not read it . Basically they need to get a life.
    I have to say that I don't blog all that much anymore as too many people I know read it now and I worry about being judged.
    Don't stop blogging, I have you to thank for so many parts of my house build, will have to share it with you one day.
    Blog on AM
    Mekaela

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  107. A-M, I love you so much and admire your way of thinking and blogging! Most of us here do feel the same way as I do. Don't let the "dark side" take the joy from you and the way you live. People with so much light like you will always cause envy on those who have nothing to offer. Keep your chin up girl!! Your are just awesome!

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  108. Hi A-M,
    I have been following your blog for a while now, but this is actually the first time I have commented. I am absolutely disgusted that people could stoop so low to be honest!! As you said "who are these people?". I would say very sad, insecure individuals! I absolutely love your blog and hearing about your beautiful boys! I am so sorry that you have to endure such individuals! You are such a breath of fresh air and your beautiful blog is certainly one of my faves! Take care A-M and know that so many people love you and your blog. x

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  109. It's really too bad that you are still going through this. I don't have a blog or Twitter account. So far I have not seen anything like this on Facebook. I have had some of the girls who thought they could bully me in high school over 30 years ago send friend requests on Facebook. I guess they think I must be stupid or something. I have been a reader of yours from the beginning. You have beautiful things to say and I just feel relaxed when I read your posts. Don't change who or what you are for some small minded pea brain who is jealous of your inner strength and beauty. You have been through a lot for one person but have remained beautiful both inside and out throughout all your tribulations. Stay strong and plod along.

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  110. Hi A-M
    I have been debating about commenting since I first read your post last week.
    You have my sympathy. I was never bullied as a child at school but there is a small group of mothers at my childs school (lead by one woman)who for their own reasons have decided to make my life a misery. It's hard to believe adults can behave in such a way. If I told you things that had gone on I'm sure you just wouldn't believe me. ( Or maybe you would after your experience)
    I have been told the attacks, which always happen behind my back, are due to jealousy. Maybe its the same with your bully / troll.
    Ironically we are changing schools next year also. I can't wait to get away from them.

    My tactic is to totally ignore but even that doesn't work. It just seems to make them even more determined to humiliate and upset. I very rarely even go into the school grounds anymore. It makes me nearly physically sick when I do just incase I run into them.

    Keep your chin up. As much as naming and shaming sounds like a good idea I fear it may backfire on you somehow.

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    1. I'd believe you Eleanora. My little one was incredulous the other day, "look Mum, she's hiding behind the bushes". One of my trolls was hiding behind the bushes at school with her children so she didn't have to walk past me on the street. She was not hard to miss, huddled there with her children. We giggled all the way to the car and it was mentioned at dinner, under "interesting things that happened today". A-M xx

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  111. Oh A-M. You know what I think. You are an amazing person. You are a fabulous mum. You run your own race. J x

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  112. Wow - have you managed to read all those comments - must have taken you days! Great to know you have such support from your fans and readers which clearly outnumber the haters a million to one. It's so hard to know what to do, but I'm of the name and shame school with these people now. All the anonymity in the cyber world just doesn't work, and if you know who they are then I think they should be exposed for the bullies and trolls they really are. Why should people be allowed to hide behind their computers and get their kicks destroying other people with no recourse or punishment. Even public shaming is too good for them. Good on you for persevering and continuing to blog. It must be very challenging at times and make you wonder why the hell you do it. But we are all very glad you do.

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  113. Hi A-M,

    I guess you've rightly disabled the email feature on your blog but I wanted to pass on to you this article that posted today on CBC.ca - http://www.cbc.ca/news/yourcommunity/2012/09/anti-trolling-lessons-set-for-schools-in-australia.html

    I've mentioned it before but i think these lunatic thugs need to be dealt with by the law. Its nice to see that even the PM is getting involved and is taking this kind of abuse seriously. I hope your past few weeks have been better!

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  114. Hi A-M,

    I just wanted to loop back on this thread with an article I found today on the CBC (Canadian Broadcasting Corporation) - http://www.cbc.ca/news/yourcommunity/2012/09/anti-trolling-lessons-set-for-schools-in-australia.html

    I'm sure its made the headline news in Australia but I was relieved to see it because I thought immediately of you and of this lunatic situation you're dealing with. Perhaps there is some legal recourse you can take?

    I hope you've had a much better few weeks!

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Thanks for stopping by and taking the time to leave me a comment. I love hearing from you. A-M xx