Still keep changing my mind!

As I've said in previous blogs, I took some great steps forward at New Year, but then crashed at the beginning of February into what has been one of my worst episodes.

One of my main hobbies is keeping and showing fancy rats. I'm training to judge them (like 'rattie Crufts) and also help to organise a show most months with a combined mouse and rat club. Much of this I really enjoy - the overall organiser wrote an excellent computer program many years ago, and I've learned to do virtually everything on this. I also feel I am doing something worthwhile. I actually was landed with this when my predecessor just didn't turn up one day! Apparently she had depression etc. We have virtually no written instructions, and I've found out a lot the hard way! It turns out that a number of Show Secs have resigned over the years.

There are three downsides which have contributed to the setback: (Abbreviated nicknames used.) One of the judges(LV) is eccentric, to say the least. A year ago, after that show where I was 'dumped in it', I inadvertently posted on another forum "A chaotic show with a chaotic judge." She read it and will not accept my apology, and uses every opportunity to bully me and make things difficult. The other club finds that most people don't want to work with her. The other person making life difficult is (N) - the overall organiser. He is so used to controlling things that he gets really annoyed if anything goes wrong, and does not have time to listen when I need to explain things, but will not let me go away, do other things I need to, and come back when he's free - we're at opposite ends of the hall. The third problem is getting judges and enough entries to make it a 'star' show. I had no idea I was entering politics! If X (LV above) is judging, then Y will not enter. This means we may not make up the numbers for stars, so Z will not show! In the past year we have lost three judges because of actions of the two people above, and it makes arranging them almost non-viable.

The show is quite a way away, and I enter quite a few of my own rats to make up numbers. As I don't drive, this makes a tricky journey (although I think London Bridge bus station will have re-opened next time!), and I do have chronic pain problems.

Do I, or do I not resign? I get satisfaction out of doing it in some ways. However, the last two shows I've made mistakes - left important paperwork behind etc. when stressed and depressed - and therefore been accused of stressing N - who does not appreciate that they are stressing me! Last time I wasn't well physically, but the main problem was that I was already in a state of semi-breakdown after acting as steward to LV at another show, and I practically fell apart when I didn't have my paperwork. Then I lost the two judges whom I most respect - and who think I should resign.

I certainly do not want to land someone else in the uninformed situation in which I started, so will make notes for my successor. I was going to leave before May, but am concerned that a newcomer, who has emotional problems, may get dumped upon and treated similarly. If I stay until July. I can help her and see how things go. I just don't know. I keep changing my mind!

7 Replies

  • I don't think you should resign. I've read lots of your posts about your rats and you seem very committed and very knowledgable. I think it would be a loss to them if you did X

  • Hi, You've done a fantastic job, particularly so given the lack of handover instructions, I hope you feel proud of your achievements - you should. It's a lot of responsibility which can be difficult, particularly during down times I'm sure. It would be such a shame to stop as you get so much joy from it when things are going well.

    Rather than leave, could you get someone to help you with your duties and give you moral support too? Someone you get along with and can help relieve some of the pressures on you? I know how you feel about the politics. I remember going to a local westie show many years ago and remember all the back biting and bitching (excuse the pun :-) ) I heard, so I suspect this goes on in all fields. I really hate the thought of what this bully is doing though. We all say things we regret and it's a shame she won't accept your apology and move on. Would writing a letter to her about how you feel help?

    However, if you decide to resign, you can hand over the baton to someone else with pride having taken the trouble to document instructions and also offering to help initially. You can presumably continue to enter your ratties in the shows, so will still be a part of it and get that pleasure?

    Take care. Sue xx

  • Yes - apparently this goes on in all the pet (and agriculture) show circles.

    I feel guilty if I don't follow Nick's advice to leave - he's one of the judges who have dropped out.

    I'd really rather that my friend didn't get roped in as Show Sec as it might worsen her problems, but it will be good to have her support if I carry on.

    I need to put away my supermarket delivery and set the second cage trap. I think Sparkle-Houdini knows what they are now! I want to show her on Sunday - her last show as a rat kitten. She is curly (rex) and black with curly whiskers. I love curly rats!

  • Curly rex rat - I didn't know they existed, but have just googled and found some pictures. They look adorable. You'll have to upload some of your pictures if you can. Houdini - well I guess that tells us all we need to know about that madam! Sounds like she keeps you on your toes. Enjoy the show on Sunday. Sue xx

  • have you thought of just setting up a new club with the good judges that left and then you could walk away I dont think you should go without but if they are that much of a problem perhaps if people go off and set up a proper club run the right way well they might just get the message xx

  • Hi

    I agree with all the positive comments. I think you should definitely not resign!


  • I have three options:

    1. Continue as things are - with same adverse effects (not a good idea)

    2. Resign (don't really want to - also could get me judge-training experience)

    3. Find new ways of coping with the situation - a couple of humorous mental pictures are a

    start. I need to put a banana on my desk each time to remind me of a book I read

    called "Building with bananas" (Imagine LV and N as faces on two bananas!) I also

    picture caricatures of them playing chess with us. Also I need to remember that I'm

    coping in God's strength, not mine.

    Tomorrow's NFRS show has been postponed until September because of the weather. Great news:

    1. I hope my sciatica will have settled

    2. I should be able to show Sparkle-Houdini! (Two cage traps set now!) Last night she managed to get the bait without triggering one. She also likes talking to the boys through the bars.

    3. My 'out of condition' rats should have put on weight

    I must return my disabled rat to his cage now he's had his medication. Although he is tilted right over to one side he is amazingly active and can actually jump - in fact his favourite hiding place is a horizontal ladder at the top of the cage