Wikipedia talk:Reach out

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Welcome to Reach Out[edit]

We are discussing how to best use this project to reach Wikipedians in trouble without creating bureaucracy and to help people edit the encyclopedia. Join the discussion on the talk page.--ElaragirlTalk|Count 02:05, 3 January 2007 (UTC)

New Project[edit]

Well, how should we proceed? --ElaragirlTalk|Count 02:06, 3 January 2007 (UTC)

Were there changes you had in mind? -- Natalya 02:25, 3 January 2007 (UTC)
Well, Natalya, I'm not .. sure. I think this is perhaps the best of the programs to save, but I would like some help in running it since my own life is kind of ... screwed at the moment. Mainly -- should there be a tag like {{helpme}}? A notice board? What? --ElaragirlTalk|Count 04:34, 3 January 2007 (UTC)
Noticeboard seems like the most "clean" solution, helpme-like template might work but it sort of invalidates the point of this page (I assume all help would be on the user's talk page). In addition, when support is on a talk page rather than in one place, useful support that might be beneficial to others might be left unseen, which is..bad. I think this is a good concept and one that should be extensively expanded and made known. --Wooty Woot? contribs 08:06, 3 January 2007 (UTC)
That's a really good point about keeping all the information on this page, and allowing everyone to benefit from it. Perhaps we should emphasize that? (if it isn't already)-- Natalya 23:49, 3 January 2007 (UTC)
Edit mercilessly, then. I certainly respect any contribution you make, and I think this is the best way for you to carry on the real goal of helping people, isn't it? --ElaragirlTalk|Count 00:15, 4 January 2007 (UTC)
As always, Elaragirl, you are far too kind. I've added another guideline about posting responses on this page. Yours and Wooty's idea of a noticeboard would be pretty nice... just not sure how to implement it. -- Natalya 04:19, 4 January 2007 (UTC)

I try to be an honest person...[edit]

...but it seems others don't see the world the way I do. I'm a broken man, and I just don't see any reason to do much of anything, including eat or sleep. No, I'm not suicidal, because I know it'll pass, but it hurts like hell and I just want it to go away. I don't expect any kind of notice or responses, but if anybody reads this at all, at least I feel that somebody out there has noticed me. I blanked my user page a couple days ago, and nobody noticed. I probably won't be especially active until I can be motivated by anything but hurt and outrage. – ClockworkSoul 20:59, 2 January 2007 (UTC) Recopied from archive page - --ElaragirlTalk|Count 02:04, 3 January 2007 (UTC)

Hey, its all right. You try to be an honest person, but other people do not understand you, is that right? Just let it pass, or you can try to change your point of view...I know how you feel, I'm like that too. It's just that maybe people are sometimes unclear of what you mean, so you must speak up! I just sort of got over it, I don't bother anymore. Why should people affect how I feel about things? You should do the same. Try to make people understand. If anyone can, it's you! You're trying to be honest, and that's a good thing, but sometimes, I learn to let the moment don't have to be honest about everything, just when you think the time is right. Hope this helps, and I hope you feel better soon! Cheers! Zacharycrimsonwolf 13:14, 14 November 2006 (UTC) 12:44, 3 January 2007 (UTC)

Clockwork Soul, I hear you. It sounds like the last time I had my heart really broken. I couldn't eat, and lost 40 pounds (which actually was kinda nice). I slept though - all day. I have some tips for you and anyone else going through some stuff right now:

  • Look through the eyes of the other person - everyone is different and sees things differently. Try to look at it from another point of voice and avoid prejudice.
  • Take B complex - this helps elevate your mood and energy level, it also literally coats the nerve endings. It's both elevating and soothing at the same time. You can't take too much - most of the B vitamins are water soluble. If you take a complex, the one's that are difficult to process by the body are minimized.
  • Get as much natural light as you can - another thing that hits is the the diminished sunlight this time of year. Seasonal Affective Depression (or Disorder) have been proven as very real, and easily remedied. If you can afford it, invest in some "grow" lights.
  • Talk to people - reconnect with as many supportive people you can. Or perhaps just pick up the phone, or answer an email. You don't have to be perfect when you communicate, just communicate. It's important to maintain connections when everything goes "pale".
  • Get out of your space at least every day - not just to go to work, but to some other "safe" place, such as a library, or a museum. Just seeing other people helps.
  • Fake it till you make it - an oldie but a goodie. This has been scientifically proven to work. If you can plaster a semi-genuine smile on your face when you walk out the door, people will respond, and it can generate a cycle of positive feeling.

These are just some of the tips I have for battling depression. Please try not to sleep to much - it tends to exacerbate things. I know you're not exactly talking about depression, but these things work for heartache and malaise as well. If you ever need to dialog, email or tap a message on my talk page. I care about you. Please believe that, because I don't lie. Nina Odell 05:58, 4 January 2007 (UTC)

  • relax and take a little break. Don't let it hurt you. You know what, no one see anything the exact same way, so don't stress yourself. I hope that helped. Bloddyfriday 16:05, 13 March 2007 (UTC)

  • Everyone is unique, don't stress over it. Sometimes I feel the same way about not getting enough attention. Try taking a short wikibreak / drinking some Chamomile tea, that always works for me. I hope that this helps in any way.  ~Steptrip 00:23, 26 March 2007 (UTC)
If you don't feel appreciated on Wikipedia, head over to the Help desk and start answering questions. See: Wikipedia:Help desk/How to answer for everything you need to become an expert Help desk helper. Or try answering questions on one of the other question desks. Helping others is a great way to get your mind off your own problems. So is riding a bicycle. --Teratornis 17:36, 27 June 2007 (UTC)

Alerting supporters[edit]

Alright, I've been thinking about the best way to alert others of current requests and keep the support concise and helpful for all. I think the best solution is to have a template for "supporters" userspace which keeps track of new posts, similar to the template opentask or the related task pages. Essentially, you'd add {{currentsupport}} or something on your user page, and it would update with either all the "new" posts on the Wikipedia:Reach out board, or would simply say "There are new messages at WP:REACH. I have no idea how this would work without a separate page though, and I've never created a template that worked this way before, so I don't know if this is possible. As for supportees, they can just come here and edit the page we have now. In the future, and if this takes off, we could divide it down into specific sections as necessary with subpages, but..we'll see. --Wooty Woot? contribs 01:18, 4 January 2007 (UTC)

I found out that when a user posts {{helpme}} on his/her page, that user is added to the category Category:Wikipedians looking for help. I don't know yet how precisely this is done, but this suggests that it can be done. I suppose that people who are willing to offer support would just have to add that category to their watchlists. --Kyoko 08:59, 4 January 2007 (UTC)
(ec; the colon was also added by someone else) I've added a colon to the start of your category link. It added your comment to Category:Wikipedians looking for help, which set off a script (User:ais523/catwatch.js) that I've set to alert me with an extra watchlist entry whenever anything's added to that category. (The addition to the category is done by <noinclude>ing a category into the {{helpme}} template.) --ais523 09:18, 4 January 2007 (UTC)

New guideline proposal[edit]

"No names"!!!

It might not be good if User X talks about problems he had with User Y (edit war), and then User Y happens to come here and we stir up a pot of trouble. I think another guideline should be that if the conflict is related to WP, that names are kept out of it, and the problem should be phrased in terms of the supportee's feelings. Essentially, we need to make sure people won't come here and hijack valid emotional support for their own devices by using this page as a neo-Mediation Cabal. This is for emotional support - conflicts go elsewhere. Just my thoughts. --Wooty Woot? contribs 06:32, 4 January 2007 (UTC)

This is a good idea, this page shouldn't be turned into a roundabout way of attacking each other. Perhaps the page should also mention WP:NPA, regardless of the circumstances. --Kyoko 07:37, 4 January 2007 (UTC)
Yep, that's a very good point. -- Natalya 13:24, 4 January 2007 (UTC)
In order to get some feedback, I have added the relevant section and my guideline proposal to my sandbox. (it's number 7) --Wooty Woot? contribs 05:06, 5 January 2007 (UTC)
In addition, I feel that we should keep a disclaimer or guideline here making sure that if people are genuinely suicidal or are in fear of their life/mental health, they should call the authorities or get some sort of psychiatric help immediately, and that this page is a complementary support mechanism, not a substitute for counseling or medical help. --Wooty Woot? contribs 05:10, 5 January 2007 (UTC)

some overlap with Wikipedia:Stress alerts?[edit]

It occurred to me that there is some overlap in intent with Wikipedia:Stress alerts, though with that project, support is left on the individual user's talk page instead. I personally think that there's room for both of these pages, because the Reach out page can work as a sounding board of sorts for different people to provide feedback on a specific problem, whereas the Stress alerts page can allow interested people to learn of stressed users and provide them with individual messages of support. If this makes any sense. --Kyoko 07:46, 4 January 2007 (UTC)

Excellent idea, Kyoko. Let's also consider email - just plain taking sensitive stuff off-wiki, but showing more generic support on the talk page. Also, I would encourage users to remove extremely sensitive information of their talk page, gently.
I understand that's controversial, but (for example) I've seen everything put up on a user page - on down to a plea for money with a paypal set up to help a family (no lie - absolute truth). If we can support in a confidential way, then we can support more effectively at times. It's a matter of protecting people when they are vulnerable and perhaps might be posting something they will regret later.
I know I wasn't a member of Esperanza, but I'm a peer counselor in real life, as well as running a small non-profit dedicated to the power of friendship as means of empowerment. I plan on watching this page, but I'll probably not contribute any further. I just wanted to say that I'm available in whatever capacity for any incarnation of this project. Thanks for doing this. Nina Odell 12:01, 4 January 2007 (UTC)

Cuddle fest[edit]

To be honest, I don't see why we need this page. It looks like a big cuddle fest that doesn't accomplish anything at all. Gandoman 18:22, 10 January 2007 (UTC)

What it does is help users deal with stress, which in turn helps them become better editors. It builds a sense of community support, and encourages users to be civil and assume good faith. Everyone needs a "cuddle fest" every once and awhile, anyway :-) -- P.B. Pilhet / Talk 20:07, 10 January 2007 (UTC)
I'd be more likely to take what you said into account, Gandoman, if you had been at Wikipedia for mor than, oh, a few hours. However, since you haven't, I'd recommend you edit some article and get involved in some conflicts before stating ths page is useless. --ElaragirlTalk|Count 22:27, 10 January 2007 (UTC)
You speak as if a cuddle fest is a bad thing. .V. (talk) 09:03, 13 January 2007 (UTC)
I would like to see advice that's on practical terms going forward. Something that's practical both on-Wiki and off. NinaOdell | Talk 16:44, 13 January 2007 (UTC)
That's tricky. It's one thing if people ask for help to be given off wiki and someone chooses to do so...but some people can end up doing more harm than good. --ElaragirlTalk|Count 18:06, 13 January 2007 (UTC)
Wikipedia can be a cruel place; check out one running log of cruelty here. Try to comprehend the anguish of all those tortured victims of faceless bureaucracy behind the constant parade of deleted pages. Different Wikipedians cope with wikicruelty in different ways. Some people like a cuddle fest (especially a naked cuddle fest). Others prefer the Ghengis Khan approach: patiently accumulate overwhelming power and then years later exact sweet revenge. I doubt anyone sees the need for every page on Wikipedia. If you don't see the need for a particular page, the simplest thing to do is go read some other pages you like better. I, for example, don't see the need for fancy signatures, but if other people want to make them, I don't care. --Teratornis 17:55, 27 June 2007 (UTC)
Without "Reach Out", stressed users will leave Wikipedia. I talked to someone on YouTube who went through what I went through. We need "Reach Out"! --The Wiki Loner (Talk to me!!) 17:24, 13 September 2007 (UTC)

Maybe offtopic also: asking for some experience on serious wikiholism[edit]

Please, can someone help with a suggestion on how can I reduce the number of pages I watch, but in the meantime not to come to another temptation to become a wiki junkie. Actually this problem I don't have on this wikipedia (it is on sr:), although I think it could spread here. I simply thought that there is more collective experience in here - it is more probable that someone who had a similar problem could be watching this edit and maybe replying it.

So this is the problem in short: the actual number on my watchlist is something more than 2000, so I think that manually going through it would be exhausting. Also often when I log on to wiki, I become distracted by many links and already I see myself pressing the watch button even if I don't even make an edit to the page. Any ideas? Please, soon, I am pretty stressed because of this - I think I am quite an addict already. I took some wikivacation in the past, but I've had several complaints by my nearests recently again. Recidivist, that's what I am. But there is a chance for me - I keep the User:The Singing Badger on my watchlist, because it is terrifying me. And I reached out, haven't I. So, please, someone respond. --Biblbroks's talk 20:44, 12 May 2007 (UTC)

If you'd go through your watchlist manually, you'd probably get exhausted indeed, and most likely you'd even enlarge it because of all the other interesting stuff you'd see if you'd click a link when assessing whether that article should stay on your watchlist. There's probably a couple of pages that you really, really care about: pages you've created, or pages you've made a lot of edits to. There are ways to figure that out (for instance [1], I don't know if that works for the other languages too), and my suggestion would be to select the (20, 30, 50?) articles that you really, really care about. Are there a couple of Wikipedians that you want to keep in touch with? Ok, make a top X too. Post all that in some text file, or your sandbox. Then clear out your total watchlist. All of it. And make a new one from the articles and pages that you just collected.
The problem seems to be more than just the watchlist though, I acknowledge that. But I'm getting the idea that your watchlist is actually the cause of some stress for you, so perhaps this is a bold but necessary step to change that. --JoanneB 21:57, 12 May 2007 (UTC)
Just a note, so someone can learn from my experience. I cleared the watchlist long ago. It helped. Thanx for this. --Biblbroks's talk 13:48, 12 August 2007 (UTC)

I try my best...but[edit]

But this is just the last straw. I try to be helpful, patient and supportive. And it went well with a person. Until he suddenly started throwing insults at me. Most of the time, its a joke, I think. But everyday. I cracked inside. And that's not the end. He, who says I am his best friend, ignored me. And what do I do now? It just doesn't work out. I try talking, asking, being there for him, everything, nothing works. All I get is a few sentences from him. I don't think I heard a 'thank you' from him for a few months now..what do I do? Confront him? That my last resort -Zacharycrimsonwolf 14:10, 12 June 2007 (UTC)

It sounds to me that something is going on in his life that's pretty bad. I think the best way to proceed would be to (very calmly and considerately) ask him about it. It might sound difficult, but being direct and compassionate at the same time is often the best way to resolve things like this. .V. [Talk|Email] 02:59, 13 June 2007 (UTC)
Yeah, that is the only thing I'm thinking about now. But..I still think its a bad idea. A lot of people had said that was my only way out of this, but I think that doing it would be even worse than doing nothing. By the way, thanks for the support. Cheers. -Zacharycrimsonwolf 13:44, 13 June 2007 (UTC)
If you need to feel appreciated, there's plenty waiting for you on the Help desk. Just hang out and answer questions. Since Help desk questions are pretty repetitive, you can learn how to answer most of them just by reading answers from other Help desk helpers, or by searching the old Help desk answers with Google. Plus, once you answer a user's question, it's generally over. We don't get into edit wars on the Help desk, although we write about how to avoid or resolve them. --Teratornis 17:42, 27 June 2007 (UTC)

I had enough[edit]

Everyone LOVES insulting me it seems. Everyone LOVES to fight me. Everyone LOVES to treat me like I'm the reincarnation of Adolf Hitler. Everyone LOVES to find small faults in my editing pattern and use it to try to give me a hard time. "Selmo, your a vandal" "Selmo, your a troll for dare shoving your propaganda into articles when you know it violates one of Wikipedia's CORE POLICIES." "Selmo, I hate you" They always love to make me feel bad. They always insult me. They want me to feel badly for dare editing. "You don't understand policy you rotton person". I don't know. I'm sick of people targeting me. — Selmo (talk) 22:34, 1 August 2007 (UTC)

I think you're seeing any criticisms of your edits as an attack on you, personally. It doesn't need to be this way. Consider taking a break. Come back later refreshed, and maybe these things that seem personal now won't seem so personal. Friday (talk) 22:44, 1 August 2007 (UTC)
    • Selmo, after viewing your userpage, I'm well assured that you are a competent editor, and that you did nothing maliciously. You seem like a wonderful person, so, I say, happy editing!N734LQ 06:45, 12 August 2007 (UTC)

This is dead.[edit]

Nobody's posted here in two months and, before that, the postings were sporadic. A {{historical}} has been added.   Zenwhat (talk) 03:30, 20 January 2008 (UTC)

Although the talk page is inactive, the information on the main page is still useful to current readers, so I'll remove the {{historical}}-template. Mikael Häggström (talk) 06:38, 12 August 2012 (UTC)


This seems to be a very useful tool, and I'm suprised that this page has fallen into disuse. I think we've done a horrible job of making this resource available to users, and that we could possibly - possibly - reactivate the page for use by everyone. --Delta1989 (talk) 22:43, 7 October 2009 (UTC)

Indeed, and I think what this page needs is a complete remake to represent the general goal of reaching out, especially to newcomers. Mikael Häggström (talk) 07:03, 12 August 2012 (UTC)