The Drama Free Zone
I have this thing I say around the house from time to time...as a reminder to Natalie and the kids that our home is a safe place, a peaceful place, a haven free from chaos and craziness.
I call our home a D.F.Z. - Drama Free Zone. And I have this little sign on my home office desk.
Drama feeds on itself. It's a self-replicating virus that spreads exponentially unless checked early. It also causes great damage that, in many cases, cannot be undone.
Whoever said that "Sticks and stones may break my bones but words can never hurt me" couldn't have been further from the truth, as words have the power to heal or wound, empower or deflate, rescue or destroy.
I always assure my family that drama stops at the door. It stays outside of the walls of our little castle. If we have a problem, we take it (directly!) to the person who we feel has wronged us and, in good faith, work to find a solution. Or we ask a responsible third party to mediate and help us find a constructive solution. If those solutions don't work and none other present themselves, we walk away.
No rabid phone calls to a long list of third parties. No calling out on Facebook/Twitter. No rumor mills. No yelling and stammering. No theatrics. No drama.
It's our home. It should be a Drama Free Zone.
I know there are many in this world who aren't happy unless they're unhappy, who would rather stir the pot of dissent and division than offer a soft touch and a kind word, who lead with anger, who create soap operas in every environment they enter, who thrive on negativity, who are the poster children for drama. And they'll always be scratching at our front doors (metaphorically and physically), hoping to infect us.
However, it's our choice as to whether we put out the welcome mat for the wailing, frothing, petty and destructive elements that exist in the circles we inhabit. We can't change the Agents of Drama, but we can take steps to protect ourselves from the chaos they inflict.
When I see drama here in the freethought community (or anywhere in my life: job, family, personal relationships, etc), I try to step backward just a few paces, examine the situation, attempt to locate some high ground, and then renew my commitment to make my home - and my life - a D.F.Z.
I wish the same for you, my friends. :)