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Official Guidelines

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Old 01-18-10, 11:38 AM   #1
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Welcome to TTL

Welcome


Welcome to our community. While the site's name is a phrase that most people who have endured pain can identify with, the site's purpose is to help members "take this life" in another way entirely; to "take" as in to deal with life's challenges, and, perhaps, make a friend or two in the process.

The thread you are reading is organized in several parts. There is the welcome message you are reading now, followed by our list of rules, and finally posts elaborating on many of our rules and explaining their rationale. We hope you find it a convenient format to familiarize yourself with what is expected of members and the reasons why.

About TTL

TakeThisLife.com is a place for people to help one another by sharing experiences and giving and receiving advice. We encourage members to participate without holding back, as "letting it all out" can feel very good and help people who may otherwise feel that they are the only ones with those thoughts or feelings. At the same time, anyone found encouraging harmful or destructive behavior will be banned from the site and his or her posts will be deleted.

Please consider at all times that other community members are real people with real problems, just like you, and that they are not professionals. Even if a member is or claims to be a professional, that member is not acting in his or her professional capacity when corresponding in the message forums or via private messages, and you need to consider that when evaluating any statements made or advice given by them.

Maintain Your Anonymity

Also, please do not give out your full name or contact information to anyone, via private messages or otherwise. As with any other public Internet forum, there is the risk that some users may have ulterior motives or not be who they say they are. Details

We're All Amateurs

The forums are not monitored by professionals for signs that anyone truly needs help or intervention, so please keep in mind that the only action anyone here can do in response to a cry for help is to post a reply! If you find yourself in imminent danger of causing serious physical harm to yourself or another person, please call Emergency Services.

Participation at TTL is a Privilege

Participation at TTL is a privilege, not a right. Please follow the rules as described below, because the TTL Team does not have to tolerate disruptive members, and we won't.

Respect Moderators' Decisions

Further to the above, moderators volunteer their time here to help ensure that the TTL community remains not only available, but a supportive, constructive place. Given the subject matter here, this is often a challenging, taxing task. Please do not make things anymore difficult for moderators than they have to be by questioning, challenging, or otherwise undermining moderators' decisions in public threads. If you have a question about or issue with action taken by a moderator regarding one of your posts, you are welcome to start a thread in the Contact Moderators forum. Please note that for the sake of members' privacy and in the interest of not embarrassing anyone, we do not make announcements nor answer 3rd party inquiries regarding issues with other members.

Disclaimer of Liability

The forum, its administrator, moderators, and/or members are not responsible for any members' actions or the consequences of such actions.

While we make every effort to insure that TTL is always a helpful, nurturing place, the TTL Team is only human and cannot be everywhere at once. That being the case, there may be offensive content on the forum from time to time until a member of the Team has had a chance to address it. If you see a post that violates the guidelines, please report it by clicking on the report button beneath a poster's username beside their post:

Everyone is responsible for their own well being, and if you think you may be significantly adversely affected by encountering such content then you should leave the site. Otherwise, you participate at your own risk.

In short, TTL and the TTL Team disclaim any and all liability.
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Old 01-18-10, 11:39 AM   #2
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Official Guidelines

Please Follow The Rules

Below are the official guidelines for participating in the TakeThisLife.com community. Failure to observe them may result in posts being edited, moved, or removed, or accounts being banned temporarily or permanently. Please note that while we have made an effort to communicate the rules as clearly as possible, it is ultimately at the staff's discretion whether a post needs to be edited or removed in the interest of the welfare of the TTL community.

We Try To Be Fair

The staff here will enforce the rules to the best of our ability. If post A is addressed by a moderator while post B violates the same guideline but is not dealt with, it is no reflection on the moderator's personal opinion of poster A or poster B. As committed as we are, we are only human, and we will not catch everything.

We're Always Learning

These guidelines are subject to change as we evolve and receive more input. Please check back regularly to stay advised of the current guidelines in effect. Also, particular forums may have additional guidelines specific to them which can be found in those forums.

Also, please be advised that because many spend significant time and energy replying to posts, and the resultant discussions are often beneficial to many, posts and threads will not be removed.

The Rules

A) No suicide methods or threats
- 1) No "goodbye" posts to indicate you are committing suicide or leaving the forum.
- 2) No suicide or self-harm methods (ie: razor, knife, rope, gun, .etc)
- 3) No "plans" or "dates" to indicate that you have the means and plan to use them.
- 4) No posts stating that you or someone else is in immediate danger. Instead, please contact medical professionals.
It is at the staff's discretion whether to edit any post details deemed potentially harmful to other members.

B) No encouraging other members to harm themselves
- 1) No explicit endorsement of another member's suicide
- 2) No implied endorsement of another member's suicide
- 3) No pro-suicide discussions, such as arguing that suicide should be legal or is otherwise a person's right. This is counter productive to the goals of this community and therefore may not be posted.
- 4) No encouraging eating disorders. Details

C) No asking others how to harm or kill yourself. We are here to prevent suicide.

D) No purposely making other members feel bad Details

E) No personal arguments with other members in a public forum Details

F) No posting of personal or contact information. Details This includes but is not limited to:
- 1) Names other than usernames
- 2) Addresses
- 3) Telephone numbers
- 4) Screen names for instant messaging services
- 5) Personal websites or blogs
- 6) Personal images that depict people
- 7) Email addresses
This includes posting personal information about someone else.

G) No posts containing depictions of gratuitous sex or violence, including self harm. If your subject matter is somehow violent or sexual, describe it with the bare minimum language necessary to adequately convey your idea.

H) Topics and posted exchanges should be relevant to the particular forum in which they appear.
- 1) Although personal connections between TTL members outside of the site cannot be prevented, communications between members regarding a personal outside relationship is not relevant to any of the community forums and will be removed.

I) No links to similar online communities, as it undermines all of our efforts to grow TakeThisLife.com.

J) No depression discussion in chat, private messages or in the forums designated as part of the "Lighter Side". Please use the appropriate forums for support. Chat, private messages, and forums designated as part of the "Lighter Side" are reserved for lighthearted talk among friends at TTL. Details

K) No religious content outside of the Faith forums. Religion can be great, but it can also be uncomfortable to be "subjected" to beliefs that are not one's own.
- 1) No preaching or links to particular churches.
- 2) No general discussions or debates. The Faith forums are for personal depression related support only.
- 3) This includes all spiritual and faith related beliefs, either personal or as part of an official religion.

L) No gun or weapon related discussion. This includes pictures or videos.

M) No spamming, solicitation, advertisements or research requests.

N) No casual references to recreational drug use outside the scope of seeking support. Details

O) One username per person. It is unfair to fellow members to masquerade as multiple people. Members found to have multiple usernames will either be banned or have their usernames merged, depending on how their multiple usernames were used.

P) No political discussion. Political discussion, while interesting, can be extremely polarizing. Many people are passionate about their political beliefs, and when these beliefs clash it often results in arguments and animosity which impede our overarching goal of creating a safe, helpful, welcoming place for members.

Q) Please post about your own issues in your own thread. While you are of course welcome and encouraged to let members know that you can relate to them, please do not launch into full blown descriptions/discussions of your own issues in another member's support thread unless it is specifically tailored for the purpose of providing support to that member. Similarly, please do not take another member's thread off topic by starting or participating in an off topic discussion in a member's thread that the member did not start themselves.

R) No expressions of intent or desire to inflict physical harm on others, or suggestions to others to inflict such harm. We value people's safety, on and off TTL. Nobody here is equipped to address such expressions appropriately, and they are therefore prohibited.

S) No posting about other TTL members or moderators or issues with them in public forums, including the Member Journals forum. If you have an issue with another member or a moderator that requires moderator intervention, please start a thread in the Contact Moderators forum.
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Old 01-18-10, 11:42 AM   #3
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Keep Your Identity Secret

From People You Know


This place is here for members to share things they wouldn't necessarily feel comfortable sharing with their friends, family, etc. Please be sure not to post details that may reveal your identity.

While it is unlikely that others in your life read posts here, avoiding sharing specific details will help ensure that your identity cannot be discerned from your posts and that your posts are not returned in search results for specific details.

Remember, just because you don't mind anyone knowing you said a particular thing today does not mean that you won't tomorrow.

From People You May Not Want To Know


The TTL community is a public website open to all who can benefit from participating and are able to follow its rules. As a result, posts are viewable to registered members and non-members alike.

We've all been spammed, but not everyone realizes that there are computer programs that scour the Internet looking for email addresses to send junk mail to. By posting your email address you make it available for all (people and computer programs) to see. What's more, it could get indexed by a search engine and cause your post at TTL to show up in search engine results for your email address. Needless to say, this would vitiate your anonymity and probably not be a good thing.

Also, while the majority of members here are genuine, caring people here to help one another, there is always the risk that somebody is not who they say they are. Unfortunately there will always be those who try to take advantage of others for monetary or other gain. By keeping your contact information to yourself you can ensure that you won't be ensnared by such a person.

Finally, many members here at TTL battle with depression, and it's possible that some are subject to significant changes in mood or personality. By not sharing your contact information with others you ensure your privacy and safety.

Because of the risks attendant with sharing personal contact information here, it is against the TTL Rules to share full names, email addresses, physical addresses, links to personal blogs, or other information that is likely to reveal your identity.
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Old 01-18-10, 11:44 AM   #4
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Dear Members,

The purpose of this community is twofold. First and foremost, we are here to share our experiences, and give and receive support to one another.

We have found, though, that many members feel comfortable with the people they connect with here, and after discussing their issues they like to continue to interact with each other.

That's what the forums in The Lighter Side categories are for. You can post jokes or funny stories in the Fun and Games forum, talk about books you're reading or have read in the Book Club, discuss movies in the Music, Movies, and TV forum, share pictures of your artwork and pets in the Art Gallery and The Pet Place, respectively, etc. Aside from giving you something to think about other than your challenges or those of another for a while, participating in these off topic discussions fosters the community atmosphere we enjoy here and strengthens the bonds between our members even further.

We hope you will take advantage of the forums in The Lighter Side category.

Sincerely,
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Old 01-18-10, 11:45 AM   #5
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Keep TTL Supportive

TTL Is Nothing If It Isn't Supportive, Friendly And Welcoming

Posts that start or continue fights with other members, posts that are rude, racist, etc., are unsupportive, unfriendly, and unwelcoming. Many people have come together here to create something good. We will not allow people who can't appreciate the community's overarching goal enough to temper their own behavior here to ruin things for everyone else.

Moderators cannot be here all the time to deal with problematic posts. For that reason, members who ignore repeated appeals and continue making problematic posts will be banned.

If TTL were a support group that physically met somewhere, disruptive people would be shown the door before they were allowed to destroy the meeting. The same must go for our virtual meeting place.

While it has always been our goal to allow members to share their feelings as openly as they want to, this must be subject to the site's overarching goal of being a supportive, friendly, welcoming community for those who could use somebody to talk to.

If TTL is not a supportive, friendly, welcoming community, it is nothing, and we ask that the community not allow that to happen. Please report problematic posts and refrain from engaging other members in ways that would start or exacerbate a problem.

Thank you,
The TTL Team
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Old 01-18-10, 11:48 AM   #6
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Please Don't Fight

Report Or Ignore, But Don't Fuel A Fire

In order for TakeThisLife.com to be the safe haven we all want it to be, we all need to do our best to avoid conflict in the public forums. That is not to say that you should not tell another member that something offended or hurt you. If, however, the member is not receptive and understanding of your feelings and continues the offensive behavior, the best thing to do is to contact a moderator or me.

Un-fueled conflicts will fizzle out quickly and everyone can continue enjoying the community. If, however, each member wants to have the final word, attempts to rally other members behind them, etc., what starts as a spark of conflict can quickly become a raging fire. Such a scenario can engulf an entire community and undermine the hard work that many people put in to create it.

Please help us make sure that this does not happen here. People come here hurting. Often, they stay laughing. Our community is a unique place where people share their experience, their pain, and their joy. By doing our best to keep the goals of this community in mind even when angry or upset with any particular member, we can ensure that this remains the most positive negative community on the Internet :)

Sincerely,
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Old 10-06-10, 09:17 AM   #7
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Do Not Promote Illegal Drug Use

Illegal drug use should only be discussed for the purpose of seeking support quitting.

The legality, harmfulness, and efficacy of certain drugs are often subjects of debate. However, one thing is certain - there are just too many members and guests here who are drawing at straws and are likely to try anything touted as offering relief for us to allow the discussion of marijuana and other illegal drug use here except for the purpose of seeking support quitting. Please refrain from discussing illegal drugs or illegal drug paraphernalia except for the purpose of seeking support quitting in the Substance Abuse forum.

Why Reasonable Casual References to Alcohol Are Allowed

Some members have questioned why certain casual references to alcohol are allowed when certain studies have purportedly shown that alcohol is more addictive, harmful, etc. than certain illegal drugs.

While we are sensitive to members and guests with issues related to substance abuse, we're are not quite an AA forum. Therefore, we don't think it's necessary to censor every responsible, or more to the point, not irresponsible, reference to alcohol. While the recreational use of marijuana is illegal in most places, having a drink is not. The latter is something many adults around the world do without issue. Many people have a drink without the intention of getting drunk or even tipsy, but few smoke marijuana or use other illegal drugs without the explicit purpose of getting stoned. Of course, we don't want to see members encouraging other members to drink, and members whose references to alcohol present an issue will be addressed.

We hope you understand and appreciate the distinction, and we welcome you to start a thread in the Contact Moderators forum (where only moderators can see your posts) if you have any questions, comments, or concerns.
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Old 02-03-11, 07:49 AM   #8
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Do not use private messages to seek or provide support

Do Not Seek Support Via Private Messages

  • The person providing support may not know what they're doing and may make the person they are attempting to support feel worse, or even harm themselves. This is far less likely when others are able to read what is being said in threads and interject when necessary.
  • The person providing support may have ulterior and possibly malicious motives.
  • The person providing support may tire of it and stop, leaving the person they were supporting feeling abandoned.
  • The person providing support could come to regard others' looking exclusively to them for support as a crushing weight and begin to feel worse themselves.
Do Not Provide Support Via Private Messages
  • The person receiving support may become dependent on the person providing support.
  • The person receiving support does not have the benefit of the advice and encouragement of all of the members who could reply to them if they posted their thoughts on the forum instead of sending them privately to a single person.
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Old 02-16-15, 12:09 PM   #9
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Do not discuss methods to lose weight

The Eating Disorders forum is a place where members can post about challenges and struggles related to eating disorders. There are members who are in delicate states here, and we ask that you please do not support behavior that enforce or worsen a members eating disorder.

Members are not permitted to:
  • Discuss methods to lose weight, such as diet plans
  • Post what your weight and/or height is
  • Post how much weight you have gained or lost
  • Encourage another member to lose weight
You are welcome to post about Exercising and your Physical Health in the appropriate forums, but please do not discuss weight loss. Having such discussions could be triggering to other members, and it could worsen their conditions. Please help us keep all members safe by reporting posts that violate these guidelines.
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Old 02-16-15, 12:10 PM   #10
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Thank you for reading the guidelines.

If you have questions or concerns please make a new thread in the Contact Moderators forum. The TTL Team are here to maintain the forum, and we are happy to answer any questions you may have.

If you have technical questions or experience issues related to the functionality of the forum, you can also contact the technical staff by posting in the Contact Technical Staff forum.

These forums are confidential and any threads you create there will be visible only to yourself and members of the TTL Team and the Technical Staff.

I hope you like it here and find the forums helpful.
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