Monday, November 10, 2008

CDH Support and Friendship at CHERUBS

One of our Advisors made a great observation this week. She said that one thing she's learned in this CDH journey is that you will always come across a few people who believe that they have been victimized more by CDH than anyone else. I agree, unfortunately, those people exist. They have suffered more, their child went through more, they know more, their grief is worse, they will do more for CDH, they are the self-proclaimed "Jesus of CDH" sent to save the world of this birth defect even though they have little experience and even less knowledge of CDH, they will be most popular in the CDH community, they need more support than other parents, their child will be remembered the most, etc.... people whose pain and grief is so great in their own eyes that they fail to see that others are in pain just as much and turn CDH into a competition instead of what it is - a tragic birth defect. These are the people who cause more pain than support, they start arguments, drama, can't get along with others or do whatever their pain leads them to do without a thought of how it could hurt someone else. This type of person exists when dealing with any tragedy or support group, not just CDH. This type of person seems to flourish on listservs, where they have a captive audience and a lot of direct attention to anything they say. In a huge support group of over 2500 people we have fortunately only had a few such people and they were long ago removed from our membership.

The point of this post is.... there is none of that at CHERUBS.

We have not used outdated listservs in a long time. We do not allow drama on our forums or in our membership. Our site and organization has been drama-free for almost 5 years (the last time we had a drama queen we had to remove). No misunderstandings. No cattiness. No mass exodus of members. No quitting of Advisors who can't get along. No mudsling. No backstabbing. No silly childish behavior. No negativity. No judgement. Only support. On the internet where meanness is common and people can hide behind anonymity to say the most cruel things... this is a rarity to have a totally positive and supportive group. And we are so proud of that!

On our site, parents can talk freely without the fear of being judged.
Everyone is heard. Everyone is supported. There are no drama queens. There are no cliques. There are no popular members. Everyone is equal. It doesn't matter if you are an advisor, a board member, a volunteer or a new member - everyone is equal. Parents can log on and ask for prayers. They can brag about their child's achievements. They can vent about how hard it is to deal with CDH. They can share a silly story. They can share their fears. They can cry. And we are here for them, all of them. 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. CHERUBS is here.

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