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AF Association
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Maintaining integrity on this AF site

There has been much activity on this site lately, from a person being described as a ‘troll’.

For me, this issue is all about the practicalities of using this site for its intended purpose - which is to ask for support, and offer support, for AF issues. It becomes challenging to do this when just one person creates daily posts that only serve the poster’s egoistic demands for attention, and also to encourage negative emotional reactions, which he enjoys and feeds off.

This person has said that he suffers with a mental illness and is sorry for any trouble he has caused. Having worked professionally with patients with mental health issues, and also having a family member with bipolar disorder, I can say from experience that mental health issues seem to be a natural part of the human condition; we all have mental health issues of some kind.

However, these imbalanced mental states exist independently from personality traits (such as immaturity and egoistic behaviour). If a person acts selfishly, it is because they chose to do so, not because they are ‘at the mercy’ of their mental health issues. We all have egoistic drives - but they have to be put to one side when we take part in a supportive community such as this one.

Yes, this person could use some help. But not on this site, which is intended solely for AF issues. We are all helpful people on here; we wish this person well, and genuinely hope he finds timely support - but in the appropriate place.

So how can we continue to maintain the wonderful support we give each other on this site for our AF issues? How can we ensure that the genuine new members, are given the support they are asking for without us wondering if we are being deceived?

Perhaps when a new member posts, we could take a little time to look into the ‘energy’ of the post. Does the person seem to be genuinely seeking support? Or are they hoping to incite people to share personal dramas? Trolls are rewarded by a high response rate, negative emotional experiences and psychological trauma, and also by causing dissention among members. And if they are ‘outed’ and we respond with anger, they enjoy this too.

Let our positive ethos remain the underpinning vibe that makes this site so wonderful! May we continue to support each other with honesty and integrity :o)

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I do hope we can return to the middle ground and embrace some of the polarities.


Wendy, as you say,each person is different so I feel we can't make assumptions about what drives some one's posts. Most have been removed but they differ very much and I think it was clear when the emotions were muddled as those posts were not lucid.

Also agree that we all have some element of mental health issues so I don't think we can exclude people because of that- often they need to discuss other issues in conjunction with their effect of their Af ( good example is the advice people gave to the unhappily married person recently)

Sometimes people post because they are lonely or worried- that's fine by me.

My only concern has been with the diagnoses being made and that has been acknowledged as bad practice. Even here , it has been the manner info was presented that was most alarming- we all hint at diagnoses at times but are careful to get people to return to their doctors for more help.


Thank you Rosy

Excellent post Wendy.


Least said soonest mended is a common saying. We have all wasted far too much time on this subject recently so please drop it and lets get back to what we are supposed to be doing i e helping people with AF.


Yes Bob, it is quite true that we are wasting time on this subject.

Yet unfortunately the problem will persist, and members may find it useful to be discerning before replying to new posts.


On reflection Bob, if you think the post won't serve the best interests of the community, I'm okay if you want to delete it :o)

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I am sure you posted with the best intentions but every time somebody adds to this discussion various negative add ons appear which only increases the disruption. You will have noticed that I have not been responding to obvious problem areas whilst giving due consideration to new members including one who most suspected to be yet another persona.

I will discuss with Admin the future of this thread but would ask that other members drop it now please. I would like a peaceful Sunday afternoon!


Bob, that is a very valid view and if you recall I made the point that it might be best not to comment on this matter in a post of yours some days ago. The contributions flooded in and in the end, admin stepped in, stopped further input and removed what had been said. I retain a copy of much of it.

WendyWu20 I think you are brave to have made your points, though I do not agree with all that you have said. As so much has been erased, it is now nigh on impossible to go back to the initial posts which seemed in my view to be devoid of malicious intent. Only as the situation started to deteriorate did posts and comments become more provocative.

ETA - Sorry to seem to ignore your exhortation to cease comment here Bob. Did not see it.


Well said Wendy :-) I think some members think we are being unfair in some way not wanting multiple accounts and fake stories filling the site because the person posting them may have 'a health issue not connected to the site' . I know from past experience and advice from a health professional that it is not helpful to anyone including the person concerned to allow them to indulge in posting using multiple personalities.

ETA apologies Bob :-) I was typing and did not see your post.


Thank you for your post Wendy. I agree entirely with all the points you made.


There are some of us who are completely in the dark about this discussion as we didn't see the posts in the first place so can't contribute one way or the other. I do think this could be very off putting to any newcomers to maybe thinking that their privacy is being compromised. I have found this site to be the very best at dealing with AF and the people here are most helpful.At the end of the day we are all here looking for advice and help so please don't give these people any more attention that is why they came her in the first place.



"However, these imbalanced mental states exist independently from personality traits (such as immaturity and egoistic behaviour). If a person acts selfishly, it is because they chose to do so, not because they are ‘at the mercy’ of their mental health issues"

Thank you for this. I believe this is right and I will think more on this.

Initial reaction is to ask whether you feel M'Naghten has any relevance here?🙂

Yes, excellent post Wendy.

Just lately it has made me and others feel whether they can use the site any more. A lot of the posts are actually quite good, but go off on a complete tangent and there's so many.



Please do not be put off. We have spoken before when I was Badger25, about my sheep, the texel cross mules.

I now post only as oyster.

I have had other accounts because I was repeatedly locked out of my existing a/c for reasons not explained to me apart from giving medical advice which is against forum rules.

Strangely I can not sign in to any of of my old accounts but I can access them via newsfeed where I could, but don't, post, but not delete.

Again, I can confirm that Badger25 and his successors post only as oyster. oyster 's preference is for all his previous incarnations to disappear and he waits on Admin to help him with this.

If it is oyster that goes off at a tangent, I would be happy to get a PM to advise me of that. The less discussion about off message matters on open forum, the better I guess.


Good grief Wendy, what has been going on?

I've been busy organising my mum's funeral ,so not following this site in depth. Is it just January blues? I wrote in Dec that I thought people were being unusually pre Christmas angsty but it seems to be accelerating into Feb. I have missed the Troll thing !

We all have A F, supposedly. Also many other heart related problems .It is horrid , but we have this site, lots of sensible support and are not on the whole lingering with a more vile complaint.


I’m so sorry for the loss of your mum, lulu. Sending love and prayers x

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Is it possible to block these accounts?. They will eventually go away.

I am closing this thread to further comments. We want this forum to remain a friendly one, and we should end this discussion now.


Rachel - AF Association Patient Services

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Thank goodness, it was getting ludicrous.

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