So, I’ve been a tad quiet the last few days, mainly as I’ve suffered from a flu, and thus found it more interesting to sleep than to write.
But enough with fever, running nose, aching body and all that, I’m back at work, and feeling better 🙂
I have been a bit busy ingame, as some of you might have seen on my twitter.
A young frustrated teen poked me, to talk to me, something which we have been doing for quite a while now. I’ve helped him gather the courage to talk to an adult at his school, and tried to support him. Sadly things took a bad turn, as he admitted to me, to have been cutting himself and attempted to slit his wrist.
My first thought was helplines, but he refused to call a helpline, as he feared his dad would hear him talking.
I tried to persuade him to speak to his father, the adult at school, his brother anyone really. He refused.
Then I alerted the Blizzard gm’s, to have them call authorities – aka real life threat report. They promised me to proceed with the chat to someone else, and nothing else seemingly happened.
I know, that crying out for help like this, increases the risk of him actually doing it. I know having considered method, increases the risk. I know having tried, increases the risk of him doing it again. I know that males are normally more “successful” when trying to take their own life.
And I was the only one who knew. I did not even know his first name (I know now), only the country he lives in.
I talked to him a couple times more, made him promise from talk to talk, not to do anything silly, and tried to keep pushing him towards talking to his father. I offered to talk to his dad for him, but his dad sadly does not understand English.
I tried to doxx him, knowing only his btag name and country, together with a friend, but we came up short. The doxx was in case I had to call an ambulance in a matter of minutes.
Then I tried sending out a cautious whisper to a friend, seeing if anyone knew his email somehow. Careful not to make it public known ofc.
And finally… monday, the kid contacted me again, telling me, he talked to his dad. That he’s now going to live with his grandparents, and will receive proff. help. That he was slightly optimistic, and relieved that his father finally took him serious.
So, whoever you are, dear dad from a foreign country. Thank you. Thank you for seeing your son, recognising his distress, and supporting him. Thank you, for taking him serious that one time in his life, where he needed you the most.
I feel so relieved, and happy for this kid, who finally after all was talked out yesterday asked me: “I never got to ask you… what’s your name again?”
We exchanged names, and he got my cell phone number too. I don’t usually hand that out, but his internet connection by the grandparents are almost non-existant. So, I told him, if everything goes to hell, and you don’t see any way out, call me.
Take care, my young friend. You have an entire life ahead of you, and things will get better. There is another way, and while life might not always be fun, it can be a lot better than it is for you right now.
ps: I have ofcourse avoided revealing any names, countries and so forth in this post, due to the safety of the kid.
A guy shared this picture on wow reddit, and within a day, it has been viewed on Imgur 360k times.
I’m baffled. I had no idea such a small thing could ever turn into something so huge. I joined the thread as OP wrote to me ingame, and told about it, and I must say, I’m grateful for all the positive feedback from gamers in both America and EU.
I guess I might as well explain the concept behind Secret Santa, hopefully it could inspire others to do good to their community.
Secret Santa started, when a -at the time- random guy approached me ingame, shortly before Christmas.
He informed me, that he had enjoyed my posts on realm forum so much, that he wished to grant me 20k gold as a Christmas gift.
I was really touched, but at the same time felt a bit odd accepting so much money from a stranger – I mean, we all know the “random guy gives money to wow girl, because girl.” sentiment.
I thanked him very much, but declined politely, yet he insisted. After a while, we agreed that I would accept the money, but not for myself. Instead I would share them with our realm, by tricking people into doing something nice, replying kindly to a newcomer, invite newbies into RP, or simply just by watching a player do a random act of good to another player. The rewards should go to random people, no matter if they are on anyones friendslist or not. I believe we have given money to two people I know ingame so far, the rest have been complete strangers to me.
Any nice little act of positive, friendly, constructive, helpful behaviour can be rewarded if the players are lucky enough for us to notice.
We gave out 27 k gold during Christmas, continued past New Year, then took it up again during the anniversary of our realm, and trust me, I’m certain we’ll see more of this by easter, if not before.
As I write this, more than 50k gold has gone out, most from our own pockets – 7k donated kindly to us however from players who got inspired.
My friend prefers to stay anonymous, due to comments like this:
So we agreed, I would be the face behind this, as I’m quite used to being noticed already. Make no mistake however, my friend is reading the Reddit thread as well, and is equally stunned by the response as I am.
Our goal and purpose with this?
We wish to bring a smile upon the faces of our fellow players.
We wish to do our little to improve the community, by focusing on and promoting good behaviour.
We hope to inspire others to do what they can to help newcomers and their fellow gamers.
So… yesterday I was poked by a guy on my btag… I have casually spoken to him once in a while, and we have worked together on the secret santa project.
For those of you, who doesn’t know, Secret Santa started when he poked me, and offered me a gift of 20k gold, simply as a thank you, as he enjoyed my posts on realm forum. Hardly knowing the guy, I refused, and when he insisted, we made an agreement, that I would accept the sum of ingame gold, and then pass it forward to others, by locating friendly, helpful people throughout the realm, and reward them with a small surprise post and 500 gold.
During the Christmas, we gave around 27k gold away – and I got to encounter so many helpful and kind people. Honestly I believe I was the most lucky one of them all.
Recently the realm turned 10 years old, and I took it up on my own again, to celebrate this event. Secret Santa offered me additional gold for the task if need be. We also have plans to celebrate easter in a similar way, and Secret Santa has grown to be one of my friends on btag.
I’m referring to him as Secret Santa, as he prefers to remain anonymous.
Anyhow, he poked me yesterday, and asked if he could have my Skype, as he wanted to say something, and did not wish to spam me too much ingame. I accepted and he transferred a small letter through Skype to me. I’m going to give you the unedited version, except for one mentioning of his name, which I have removed.
I mean… how nice is this?
One thing is giving away such a huge sum of gold, and transmog items etc, but the letter itself made me speechless, just sitting with a big smile on my face, after reading it.
I am not yet aware why or how I deserve it… but as a friend of mine said on Skype:
I feel very humble, and lucky to have such friends. Even though I hard a very hard time taking compliments, like these, I treasure them with all my heart and is deeply touched by the act of kindness.
Thank you Secret Santa, for entering my life, determined to spoil me with the presence of you.