Looking for advices

Discussion in 'Lye-Based Soap Forum' started by Doutor2, Dec 23, 2016.

Help Support Soapmaking Forum by donating:

  1. Dec 31, 2016 #41

    earlene

    earlene

    earlene

    Grandmother & Soaper Lifetime Supporter

    Joined:
    Apr 30, 2016
    Messages:
    6,398
    Likes Received:
    5,770
    Location:
    Western Illinois, USA
    I joined here at SMF after reading many posts that gave me the impression that this was a supportive group, with kindness and gentleness valued. Not coddling, necessarily, but it felt to me as though the members posting (in the threads I read before I joined) did so with respect and thoughtful consideration. Before joining SMF posts came up a lot in my Google searches for answers to soaping questions and I always found the results to be beneficial in my soapmaking adventures. So eventually I decided it would be to my benefit to join this forum.

    It wasn't until I'd been here awhile that I saw some of what some of you have identified here regarding less-than-kind-and-caring attitudes. It happened to me once and I had some personal difficulty with it, in so far as to attempt to delete a couple of my posts and remove some of my photos (which I was actually unable to do as completely as I had hoped.) It was hurtful and personally distressing to me that I was treated in the way that I was. But I also have a bit of background learning to accept that sometimes others just don't treat me as kindly as I feel that I should be treated and sometimes someone just plain doesn't like me and I have learned to accept that there is sometimes nothing I can do to change that person's feelings about me, so I have to accept it for what it is and move on. Sometimes that means breaking ties with the person in particular, but sometimes it means adjusting by interacting differently with that person so I can continue in the activity (be it a job, an organizational membership, or whatever) that I want to continue to remain in actively. There are always variables when it comes to making a decision about how to deal with someone I find 'difficult' to get along with, and sometimes it works out and we do get along. Sometimes we don't.

    I have been an admin member of an online forum and understand how difficult the group dynamics can be in an online group such as this. The group dynamics can be extremely difficult to handle for the admin group, as well as for the rest of the membership. I do not envy the admin group here their job when it comes to dealing with 'issues' such as this, that come up. It is difficult sometimes to know where to the draw the line regarding when to foster open discussion and when to shut it down. Whenever it happens, there are always some members who feel as though they are not being heard, or not being heard correctly according to their intent, and there are members who believe the mods aren't doing their job (as perceived by the members in question), and members who leave because they hate controversy, and members who love controversy and want to stir things up. Sadly the latter does happen. That's when the mods have to intervene and I am sure we don't even know what goes on behind the scenes between the mods in discussions about these issues.

    Anyway, I really felt that the OP did have intentions to improve the soap. Of all 6 posts made by this OP, all were about asking for help on how to improve the quality of their soap or to expand on the same. In spite of some responses that seemed maybe overkill, the OP still said they would make many of the suggested changes. Perhaps the 'I don't care if it's illegal' statement was a bit over-the-top as well, and yes, it was unfortunate. But I agree that the group dynamic of bullying did play a part in this thread. I feel badly for the OP, and anyone else who doesn't want to participate as a result of some of these types of interactions.
     
    Susie, GeezLouise, Hazel and 6 others like this.
  2. Jan 1, 2017 #42

    Relle

    Relle

    Relle

    Administrator & Bunny Fanatic Staff Member Admin

    Joined:
    Sep 23, 2010
    Messages:
    9,950
    Likes Received:
    2,829
    I'm glad Earlene, you understand from personal experience, and acknowledge the behind the scenes discussions that go on, that only those who have been there know about. Discussions are going on ALL the time, about all sorts of issues.
     
    Susie and Hazel like this.
  3. Jan 1, 2017 #43

    Hazel

    Hazel

    Hazel

    Lifetime Supporter

    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2009
    Messages:
    12,667
    Likes Received:
    1,837
    Location:
    Ohio
    earlene -

    That was a thoughtful and articulate response. I'm sorry you were treated badly. I was given a cyber thumping when I was a new member and I was so upset I swore I'd never come back to this forum. After I calmed down, I reviewed the thread and realized it was rough but I could understand their side. Although, they could have been more tactful and less belligerent, I checked my ego and focused on what it taught me. I'm glad I did because I have learned so much from people on this forum.

    Now, just some of my thoughts after re-reading this thread -

    When there isn't any physical or verbal cues, a comment which isn't intended to be critical may be perceived as antagonistic. Of course, having numerous people respond to your question; may be viewed as hostile even if they all intend their posts to be helpful. I know there have been many times I've posted something as a joke but the person was upset since she took it as a serious remark. I'm not one of the nice ones on this forum so awhile back I promised myself I would only post what I would say to someone's face. Admittedly, I'm not always successful as you can see in old posts. Also, the other admins/mods can tell you I can be extremely grumpy and vent to them.

    Anyway, what I try to do is re-read what I've written several times to see how it looks in print rather than how it sounds in my head. I know it's frustrating to see posts by people who view soapmaking as an easy and fast way to make money and don't want to be told differently or follow safety guidelines. I don't have answers to this issue; other than the usual "treat others as you would want to be treated".

    I'm not saying this to criticize anyone and this isn't directed at anyone. It's just some thoughts I had while reading.

    Happy New Year everyone! [​IMG]
     
  4. Jan 1, 2017 #44

    CaraBou

    CaraBou

    CaraBou

    Lifetime Supporter

    Joined:
    Dec 26, 2012
    Messages:
    3,020
    Likes Received:
    3,196
    I am having difficulty writing because there are so many things to respond to (plus I’ve had champagne lol). And Doutor is/was likely faced with that too, especially if English is not the first language. Oh, perfect -- that's point #1.

    Point #2: Don’t assume you know someone’s motives, thoughts, knowledge, experience, etc. Remember, “to assume makes an ass out of u and me.”

    #3 There are commands all throughout this thread (and the many other threads that go this same way). If you want people to listen, don't tell them what to do. Tell them what you do and why. Remember, EVERYONE is different. EVERYONE has different needs, desires, motivations, and learning processes. And EVERYONE is in a different place than where you are now.

    #4: The overall tone here was condescending to Doutor. I see a fair amount of ridicule, actually. Doutor clearly came here to learn -- see post #1, including the title. Also the other thread Doutor posted. Don't punish Doutor or anyone else for what you perceive as "sins" of predecessors.

    #5: This is about soap, people! Contrary to what we often think, soap does not make the sun rise or Earth spin. Nor do lives depend on it. We are not the law. Instilling guilt is completely unnecessary. Evoking fear is usually overkill too, with a notable exception for safety (like not wearing goggles or gloves with live lye).

    #6: Don't sweat the small stuff. Why banish someone (or their recipe) because they use 5% more of oil than you use? This does not make or break a recipe. Simple tweaks can come with time.

    #7: Not everyone checks the forum every day (see #4), or has time to process and respond to all of the information received even when they do check (#1). Rome wasn’t built in a day. And people are not robots; just because you bombard them with information doesn’t mean they will implement on the hour.

    I come here to keep learning and to help others learn. I think that’s the purpose of the site. I generally don’t respond to these types of threads but I can’t keep ignoring them either.

    Thanks to all who have stayed in the discussion. I especially appreciate those who have spoke up with specific experiences. This isn't easy but I think it is good.
     
    LilyJo, dibbles, Hazel and 7 others like this.
  5. Jan 1, 2017 #45

    IrishLass

    IrishLass

    IrishLass

    Staff Member Admin

    Joined:
    Feb 12, 2008
    Messages:
    15,453
    Likes Received:
    9,226
    Location:
    Right here, silly!
    I thank you for that, because it definitely feels like we walk a thin tightrope sometimes, what with all the different personalities and viewpoints that fill up a forum.

    I can't speak for my other fellow modmins or anyone else on the forum for that matter, but whenever any unpleasant 'issues' pop up (as they naturally will sooner or later), I confess that it bothers me enough to the point that I tend to spend the greater part of my day thinking about it and agonizing over how best to respond with words that will impart grace or something useful/helpful instead of imparting sour grapes or throwing fuel on the fire, while at the same time not compromising on any of the rules of the forum. Sometimes they clash and rank has to be pulled and its not always pleasant or easy to have to pull the plug on a conversation, but it's the right thing to do in order to maintain order/keep chaos in check.

    When you get down to the nitty-gritty, not a single one of us is immune from ever saying the wrong thing or taking something the wrong way and responding negatively. I myself can't count how many times I've stuck my foot in my mouth or have gone to bed not able to sleep because I regretted something I've said in the heat of the moment, even during those times when I'm certain it was justified.

    Knowing this about myself, in order to help keep the more ugly of my emotions from getting the best of me and ruining my day or even worse- someone else's day (which would ruin my day even more), I 've taken to doing something along the same lines as Hazel. Namely, I've gotten into the habit of writing out a first draft and sitting on it, and then re-reading whatever threads or posts in question later on, as well as my drafted response to them (and also talking/venting off steam to my fellow modmins in the secret modmin cave), before I decide to hit the 'send' button or decide to change my response. I can't count how many times I've read the intent of a post completely wrong and am so glad I did not hit 'send'.

    I wish I could say that all of my final responses are always the best they can possibly be, but they are not, and I apologize if ever a response of mine has caused pain to anyone. That has never been my intention.

    Looks like Carabou and I were posting at the same time. I just read her post and I'd like to ditto her many fine points and say that I think they are a wonderful way to start off the new year. :)


    IrishLass :)
     
    dibbles, Hazel, Scooter and 7 others like this.
  6. Jan 1, 2017 #46

    Hazel

    Hazel

    Hazel

    Lifetime Supporter

    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2009
    Messages:
    12,667
    Likes Received:
    1,837
    Location:
    Ohio
    CaraBou and IrishLass -

    Excellent posts. This is a subject almost everyone can use a reminder of occasionally. I say almost everyone because there are some people who are friendly and kind all the time. If possible, I'd like to see both of your posts copied and stuck into the Announcement section. Would it be possible to merge them with IrishLass's awesome "SMF Culture and Tone" sticky? http://www.soapmakingforum.com/showthread.php?t=56833
     
    Susie, Scooter, artemis and 3 others like this.
  7. Jan 1, 2017 #47

    CaraBou

    CaraBou

    CaraBou

    Lifetime Supporter

    Joined:
    Dec 26, 2012
    Messages:
    3,020
    Likes Received:
    3,196
    Thank you Hazel and IL, you two really are gems. My words don't need to be stuck. Just hoping there is a revived awareness that what and how we speak matters. I know we all have the best intentions and something grand to offer. Here's another new year to do it :)
     
    Susie and Hazel like this.
  8. Jan 2, 2017 #48

    Hazel

    Hazel

    Hazel

    Lifetime Supporter

    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2009
    Messages:
    12,667
    Likes Received:
    1,837
    Location:
    Ohio
    But your points are so well stated. You could edit the post a bit if you wish; but I think we need attention brought to a subject which is important to the SMF community. I know I was gone for a long time so I don't know how things may have changed. The forum was once known as a newbie friendly site where people could start out. I'd like for this reputation be maintained. If you're uncomfortable with the idea of re-posting your thoughts in this subject, then I'll just copy everyone's inspirational bits and put them in a doc as my reminder.

    BTW, you're also a bad influence. I opened a bottle of wine awhile ago. I'm such a lightweight. I haven't even had two glasses and already I'm feeling a wee bit pixilated.
     
  9. Jan 2, 2017 #49

    Relle

    Relle

    Relle

    Administrator & Bunny Fanatic Staff Member Admin

    Joined:
    Sep 23, 2010
    Messages:
    9,950
    Likes Received:
    2,829
    [​IMG]
     
    Hazel likes this.
  10. Jan 2, 2017 #50

    Susie

    Susie

    Susie

    Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2013
    Messages:
    9,339
    Likes Received:
    8,535
    Location:
    Texas
    I can get fully pixelated on one glass of wine. I rarely drink, so I am a real lightweight when I do. So I only drink at home when I am not planning to go anywhere. It has never happened yet, but if I do need to go somewhere, I plan to get Uber or Lyft to drive me.
     
  11. Jan 2, 2017 #51

    Kamahido

    Kamahido

    Kamahido

    Paladin of Soap

    Joined:
    Oct 4, 2015
    Messages:
    961
    Likes Received:
    560
    Location:
    Wyoming, MI
    "About selling it: I sell it in a store of my mother to customers that are familiar to us...so...I don't care if it is illegal; the cost per soap 0,50€ is what I have calculated... I don't need a deep financial analysis... just to know if the value is right."

    This right here. The "I don't care" mentality. This is what really gets to me. As a Sheet Metal Journeyman I see this in more Apprentices than I would care to recount. They think because they are young and I am not, that somehow they know better than I.
     
  12. Jan 2, 2017 #52

    Susie

    Susie

    Susie

    Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2013
    Messages:
    9,339
    Likes Received:
    8,535
    Location:
    Texas
    Yep, the "I don't care." attitude made me angry on his mother's behalf. It also made me realize that he wanted validation for what he was doing rather than actually asking for help.
     
  13. Jan 2, 2017 #53

    Marshall

    Marshall

    Marshall

    Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Feb 11, 2016
    Messages:
    117
    Likes Received:
    126
    Location:
    Just outside of Nashville, TN
    Just punting this out there. I work in a company that has a global foot print, as such I get to interact with folks that have varying knowledge of the English language. The OP stated that all the customers she sells to are "familiar to us" somewhat indicating that she may know them fairly well. Is it possible that with this familiarity that the idea she was trying to convey with the statement "I don't care" was more of "it's not a concern as my customer base is small and we'll known to me"?

    Now to be honest, I took the OPs original statement just as everyone else did. It was only after following the thread and all the surrounding conversation that I began to wonder.
     
  14. Jan 2, 2017 #54

    The Efficacious Gentleman

    The Efficacious Gentleman

    The Efficacious Gentleman

    Lifetime Supporter

    Joined:
    Nov 19, 2013
    Messages:
    8,929
    Likes Received:
    8,883
    Location:
    Austria
    Indeed. Any thoughts that the op wanted to learn were stopped here - I don't care and don't want to be helped to figure things out, I just want to be handed information. That statement showed an aversion to learning!

    While I believe I can be nicer in general, and will genuinely try to be so, I really do not think that this is a case in point.
     
    Susie likes this.
  15. Jan 2, 2017 #55

    CaraBou

    CaraBou

    CaraBou

    Lifetime Supporter

    Joined:
    Dec 26, 2012
    Messages:
    3,020
    Likes Received:
    3,196
    I do think that is a case in point. I would never single you out, but you just stepped in it.

    "I don't care" is indeed in context with selling to those "familiar to us." The two phrases are connected with the word "so", which means "therefore". I would read no more into it than what it actually says.
    "I sell it in a store of my mother to customers that are familiar to us...so...I don't care if it is illegal"[/I]​

    Hazel, I am certainly not ashamed of my words so use them as you see fit. I am sure they can be improved. I am fully vested in this forum as a lifetime member (I requested not to display the label), so/therefore I am interested in seeing a long term, positive cultural shift.
     
    Susie likes this.
  16. Jan 2, 2017 #56

    The Efficacious Gentleman

    The Efficacious Gentleman

    The Efficacious Gentleman

    Lifetime Supporter

    Joined:
    Nov 19, 2013
    Messages:
    8,929
    Likes Received:
    8,883
    Location:
    Austria

    That he will continue selling soap illegally and doesn't care if it is illegal or not? That is how I read it and I am not sure how else it can be taken.

    Edit to add - I was also referring to the further part about not wanting to work out detailed costs and what the price should be, rather just being told "if the value is right" - if that was in context of "here is my reasoning, am I correct in that?" then I would be much happier. But it wasn't. As I have often said, if someone is selling then they need to be doing the leg work because a) they are going to be making money from it so they should do the work themselves and b) they need to know WHY and HOW things like that work. Just being given an answer helps in the very short term and that is why I won't help in that way when someone is selling.
     
    Last edited: Jan 2, 2017
    Susie and Dahila like this.
  17. Jan 2, 2017 #57

    Hazel

    Hazel

    Hazel

    Lifetime Supporter

    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2009
    Messages:
    12,667
    Likes Received:
    1,837
    Location:
    Ohio
    This is such a difficult topic because I understand both sides. Yes, this person did demonstrate a disregard for safety, quality and laws. I also think Susie may be correct about this person's desire for validation. However, there could have been a better way of expressing concern about it. As I said earlier, I'm not criticizing anyone. I understand the frustration with people who don't care about learning the basics and making quality products. I've seen this a lot and I've been frustrated by it, too.

    I know everyone cares passionately about the reputation of handmade soap and wants to protect it. I've written a lot of posts I regret because later I realized I could have expressed things more diplomatically. I just don't think so many people needed to jump onto the thread even though everyone's contributions were relevant. Craig had a given a good reply and he covered the important points. I've given harsher replies in the past than Craig's post so I thought he was commendably restrained. After his post, replies could have kindly discussed the recipe and recommended this person read the Beginner's Soap forum. Then if this person only wanted to be spoon fed info, he/she would have moved onto another forum.

    Well, hindsight is 20/20. I don't have anything more to say about it.
     
  18. Jan 2, 2017 #58

    TeresaT

    TeresaT

    TeresaT

    I see you. Lifetime Supporter

    Joined:
    May 7, 2015
    Messages:
    2,269
    Likes Received:
    2,458
    Location:
    Chatta-Vegas, TN
    Perhaps this can be a new rule? I try to stay away from these conversations after inadvertently chasing away an individual. I did apologize for my thoughtlessness; however, it seems to have been too late.

    However, I still agree with many of the posters, if you don't want an honest answer, don't ask a question. If you want validation, go ask your family and friends; they almost never tell the truth because they don't want to hurt your feelings. A stranger will be more likely to lay it out for you because they don't have a dog in the fight. (At least, that's the way I roll.) It's hard to restrain myself sometimes, because I just say what I think. People tend to not like honesty very much. That's not just on this forum, that's in my whole life.

    I've learned over the years that (1) no one can make you feel anything. If someone says (or writes) something that rubs you the wrong way, it is your problem, not theirs. You have control over how you feel and act. (2) If someone did say or write something that rubbed you the wrong way, it's up to you to define the problem and address it with the individual. People are not mind readers, we can't determine if our "thoughtful advice" is "fighting words" to you. I believe to storm away and sulk or to quit participating in a forum because someone hurt your feelings is juvenile behavior. It is one thing if you are a direct target of bullying; however, no one here is a bully and no one here is targeting any other individual. If you can't tell yourself, "that guy's just being a bonehead and doesn't deserve my time," then maybe you have some growing to do. We all have bonehead moments. There are a lot of different personalities here (like in the real world). Not everyone is going to get along with everyone, agree with everyone, or like the way everyone presents themselves. To walk away from a forum that can offer you a wealth of knowledge and information for free because one or two people hurt your feelings, in my opinion, is silly. It goes right back to that first comment: only you can control how you feel. Someone's thoughtless words are more of a reflection of themselves than they are of you. (And yes, I say lots of thoughtless things. Frequently.)
     
    Last edited: Jan 6, 2017
    Hazel, Millie and Dahila like this.
  19. Jan 2, 2017 #59

    mrsserena

    mrsserena

    mrsserena

    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2016
    Messages:
    47
    Likes Received:
    38
    I think it would be nice if you could assume positive intent, particularly if English is a second language. I deal with a lot of people internationally, and often the tone of their writing does not match the intent.

    I too am hesitant to ask questions here, it seems that a lot of members jump on people that don't know instead of gently guiding.
     
  20. Nov 7, 2017 #60

    iwannasoap

    iwannasoap

    iwannasoap

    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Nov 6, 2017
    Messages:
    121
    Likes Received:
    22
    Location:
    Augusta, Georgia
    My compliments

    To be perfectly honest, except for your technique, I really don't see anything wrong with your recipe.
    Every body is bashing you but just because your recipe has a high cleansing value on a lye calculator doesn't mean that it is going to strip your skin and dry it out. I use turkey red castor oil, so I don't know if it is the same as castor but it actually holds in moisture and it does create more bubbles at 10%. I've just recently changed that on my recipes too with great success.
    So, you have a high cleansing value but your castor will hold in the moisture and your palm is for hardness.
    I have some recipes that are this high (in the cleansing dept) and they work great. There is no dryness. But however, we have made 100% pure lard soap and you would think that would be great for conditioning. However it dried out my hands like I had been the the water for 2 hours. It took 6x to wash with my other bar of soap before I could get that feeling off. So just because it has a high cleansing value means nothing. His castor makes up for it. Come to think of it, I might try it for myself.
     

Share This Page