Sad to leave my favorite organization after 34 years

I left because one of the officers chewed me out on a related private Facebook group in front of nearly a thousand other members. The thread started off decently, then deteriorated into a lecture from her that never addressed the question I initially asked. Of course, I am completely blameless in every possible way (hmm).

Online exchanges tend to lend themselves to a high number of misunderstandings. I’m not sure why this is. Maybe it’s because–other than private groups–10000000 people might be reading the exchange, something that adds a lot of pressure that isn’t there when two people talk over a cup of coffee in a Waffle House.

Yet, as a writer, I’m still amazed at how often the posts that begin with the best of intentions turn into an argument that can’t be saved. I wonder how many “real-life” friendships are destroyed online.

So, I left the Facebook group and then canceled my membership in a related non-profit organization. I still support the organization’s work but see no viable role for me in it if what I experienced in the group represents what management thinks of its members. I feel sad about leaving as well as justified in leaving. I’ve heard a lot of people say this about “real life” as well as online clubs/groups.

Suffice it to say, the “heat of the moment” is always a dicey place for intelligent decision-making. Most of us have been there, in that heated moment where we made long-term decisions that might have been better made a week or two later. I’m still feeling justified in my decision, but a month from now, I might wish I hadn’t made it.

That’s part of being human, I guess.


Malcolm R. Campbell

Publisher: Thomas-Jacob Publishing


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6 thoughts on “Sad to leave my favorite organization after 34 years

  1. It’s amazing how few FB arguments and misunderstandings I have now that the only thing I do on FB is post a blog link to a blog link to my blog.

  2. Sympathies. This has happened to me.

    An FB Messenger group was the vehicle for the end of a f-2-f friendship for me. Perhaps my original suggestion was foolish, but it was met with a scathing joke at my expense incorporating said suggestion. Escalation followed. There were 38 women in that groups and all 38 read the ensuing exchange. It was probably the best fun they’d had all week.

    Surely the best rules of thumb for FB (and it goes double for Twitter I imagine, a place I have never been) are :

    1 never say anything online you wouldn’t say f-2-f.
    2. Never make your ‘friend’ look a fool.


    1. There are so many stories like ours, I’m surprised anybody gets online and returns to the “real” world unscathed. So, you’ve seen this kind of trouble close up. Your rules of thumb are good rules of thumb. Thanks for commenting.

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