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July 2nd 6:33am

*WHEW* I posted to the MASSF not so long ago. I gave my *official* resignation. Noah, and I had finally touched base about my leaving. Although I wasn't sure about all the ifs, what's, and so forth he went ahead and removed my name and the link to my page. In some ways I wish he would've told me that he had removed it, but I had gone ahead and checked so I thought I'd make an official announcement.

I usually don't, for very specific reasons, talk about the MASSF in my journal. More for reasons of confidentiality, but I feel I do need to discuss my reasons for leaving. Or at least attempt to articulate why I feel so distanced from something that at one time meant so much to me. I decided that I wouldn't *really* be breaking any confidences as there is a link to it from my page and anyone who does access this page can also access the MASSF, it is after all a public forum. So anyway, here goes...

The last real-time chat Noah and I had was a time when we were discussing the way the board was moving, and I guess what you could call "strategies" for the future. All the usual stuff such as what's our role, when do we intervene, how much distance do we give the board, etc, etc. We were, or I should say I was, attempting to articulate something that was "sorta" eating at me. An issue that I was trying to make clear, and whether or not this could be a problem for the board, etc. I realized shortly into the conversation that Noah wasn't getting where I was coming from in regards to this issue. I knew he was perceiving it as rather opposite from what I was intending. And yes, I can see why it was being perceived that way.

He made a reference to me being "judgmental", and how it wasn't one of my finer points. Initially I just sort of shrugged it off and encouraged him to be completely honest with me. I said "no of course I'm not hurt, we need to discuss this". I was wrong. I lied. It was like a knife in my chest. I asked if this came across in the journal and he agreed that yes it did. Second knife goes in. I literally felt myself reeling from the hurt. I know this wasn't his intent, I know Noah well enough to know his character and its truly upstanding.

Yet this hurt in a way that I can't really explain. It was like I was (based on my experience) trying to make a point about something that he wasn't seeing (due to his specific experiences) and all we ended up doing was hurting each other's feelings. He seems too close to the issues, while I on the other hand am admittedly too removed sometimes. I've never been much for group hugs in RL, let alone in cyber. I guess I just really needed to talk through some things and I probably would've been fine. But instead of a conversation that could've brought us closer together, all I succeeded in doing was pushing us apart. This was also during the period that I was considering ending my diary, so my skin may have been unusually thin.

While I was on my hiatus, which I posted to the board in an announcement, I never received a single mail from anyone on the board, nor did anybody ever question if I was returning, etc. I admit that hurt as well, more than I thought it would. Usually when someone does that, people tend to inquire after a period of time where they are, if they are coming back, etc. So I just began to realize just how inconsequential my involvement in the board truly was, how my being there or not being there didn't seem to make a bit of difference to the other guys there. I don't post, but rather was usually just there to respond and to welcome and encourage new people to stay active. I didn't have my "breakdowns" there, I had them "here" in my journal. What I succeeded in doing was losing my own voice but not speaking up, and by the time I realized what had happened it was too late. Too late for me to get involved, too late for me to make myself heard, and too late to repair the damage done.

Not that I expected anyone from the forum to lick my wounds, but I was hurting. Not just about that but about other things in my life. Things from my past, things about myself, and things that I was still attempting to integrate and assimilate. I just wanted someone to say..."hey, thinking about you, and missing you". Its not a blaming thing either, so don't get the wrong idea of my intent here, its just a "thing". Plain and simple. As I've said before its too late to go back, but rather time to say goodbye and move forward.

This saddens me in more ways than I can even begin to express. I regret how damaged it appears Noah and my friendship has become. How hard it is for us to communicate openly and honestly. How I feel I've let him down. How I feel I never really got to know the men on the board. But also how  I never gave them a chance to know me, and to know my story. I know for the most part the links to my page from the MASSF weren't clicked through, and maybe that shows that they didn't want to know me. I can deal with that.

I just wish I would've felt more comfortable with my departure and not felt that I *had* to withdraw. I resented feeling that the time had come, although in my heart I knew it was time, I still regret how I withdrew. I was gone long before my name was removed from the page. Looking back there aren't even any posts of mine left on the board. It's like I was never there to begin with.


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