Message Interpretations

Discussion in 'Help with Life' started by Amaury, Oct 25, 2012.

  1. Amaury Krusty Krab Employee
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    Not exactly sure what to call this, but I'll try to be as detailed as possible.

    This seems to be something that started after a very small incident occurred during my junior year (2010 - 2011) at the high school here.

    It was around the beginning of the school year, I believe, and sometime in that period, I sent a friend request to one of my newly made friends -- we'll call him by the first letter of his name, which is C -- on Facebook. Sometime later, he posted something on Facebook with bad grammar (e.g., if I was instead of if I were), and, as a joke, I decided to post a comment correcting his grammar. A while later, I noticed there was a supposed "Unfriend Day" on Facebook, in which you remove someone from your contacts, and I happened to notice it. So, the next time I saw him in my Junior English class, I asked about it, and he said it was due to that grammar comment, to which I responded that it was a joke, but he said it didn't seem like a joke, and ever since, his whole attitude towards me changed. I'm not sure if it was because of that incident or if it was a coincidence that his attitude changed at that time.

    If I talked to him, when he replied, he would sound annoyed. I mean, I'm pretty sure we're all like that sometimes when we respond to people, and I even had another friend -- we'll call him C #2 -- that was in my DigiTools class (also junior year) that responded that way sometimes and sounded annoyed, but for some reason, it didn't "affect" me like C's. As the year progressed, things got better, per se, between us, and he started sounding more pleasant.

    We happened to have another class together last year (2011 - 2012) when we were seniors, which was 3rd Year Spanish, and he still seemed to have that "attitude," but it didn't appear to be like junior year. There were some "bad" days, but there were also some "good" days, and as the year progressed, him, other friends, and I started having conversations and laughing it up. When we did our presentations of the research paper we had to do on a famous Hispanic artist, he gave me a really nice compliment on mine when I asked him what he thought of it.

    To this day, even though we don't see each other anymore, we're still friends, so I'm not exactly sure if the whole "attitude" thing was towards me or if it was just a coincidence. I mean, I'm pretty sure that for a while after the incident, it was, but...

    Anyway, that was just sort of the introduction to my main point of this thread. I almost always have a very hard time telling the tone of a message online. If I ask someone something somewhere, and I get a reply that's worded in just the right way, I automatically think that it's in a negative and "getting after me" way.

    This seems to be more on KH-V, though, because, while I'm fully active on some of my other forums just like I am here, I get into more conversations with the community here, and I get that same feeling a lot of times when responses to me are made, most notably to threads of mine in either Feedback & Assistance or Site Assistance, from anybody, not just one usergroup (Registered Users, Premium Members, Coders, Reporters, Moderators, Super Moderators, and Administrators), and so I often feel like I'm almost always getting on people's nerves here.

    The closest thing I can think of is anxiety, but I don't think it's that, as it's only with this one subject and nothing else.

    Anyway, any feedback will be highly appreciated, and thanks in advance.
  2. Misty gimme kiss
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    The thing is, people don't like to be corrected--especially publicly. Maybe some take it better than others, but it wounds people's pride to do so. Which, hey, sometimes people need, but jokingly correcting grammar over Facebook does tend to annoy people. Unfriending someone over that is a rather disproportionate reaction, but all the same. It can be a little humiliating. Not only that, but when typing a quick Facebook status, not all of us check the grammar and spelling. If they're seriously holding you back from understanding the message, that's one thing, but if it's a trivial their/there confusion (or something along those lines), it's probably not worth mentioning.

    Interpreting tone online can be difficult for anyone. People have asked me before why I add "lol" or "haha" to the end of most every sentence, and I always reply that it's just to lighten things a little. Typed words can come off really harsh, regardless of how well you know the person, or how flippant they intended it to be. I've gotten into fights with good friends over the internet simply because things were taken the wrong way. It's a learning process. It's really easy to fall into the trap of getting into your own head and assuming everyone is out to make fun of you, but truthfully that's rarely the case--partially because a lot of people are nice and partially because they just don't care enough to go after you.

    Your fear is a common one, though. I think we can all say that we've, at least once, hesitated in talking to someone because we're afraid to bother them. I've found there are a few cures for it, though.
    1. Approach people when you have a definite topic of conversation in mind. Shooting the breeze is alright sometimes, but it helps to find a common interest with someone and discuss it. For example, the project you did in school--you bonded because a common interest held you together. Now, having common interests is only the framework, friendship is far more than that, but it's an excellent start. An excellent friend and I started talking because of a song we both loved. Another because we were both into art. It grows into more than that, but it's a start.
    2. Read the signs. If someone is taking a long time to reply, it might be best to leave them alone--they're probably busy or distracted, but don't want to say it in fear of being rude.
    3. On that note, give them some space. Even the best of friends don't talk everyday. You need time in between conversations to develop independently--do nothing but talk to someone everyday all day, you'll find that you exhaust subjects pretty quickly.
    4. Ask people about themselves. People love to talk about themselves. Ask them what their favorite movies are, what game they're playing right now, etc. Any interest. Out of politeness, they'll probably ask you back; start a conversation from there. When did you first see that movie? What attracted you to it? Have you seen anything else from that director? Don't make it an interview of course, let the conversation flow, but build off of that.
      1. Flattery also works well. If you're sitting by someone, a quick "hey I love your shoes, where'd you get them?" can be a decent opener.
    Socialization is difficult for a lot of people. Especially on the internet, you're going to find a lot of people who are a bit... socially awkward. Practice makes perfect, though. Know your faults, analyze where friendships have gone sour, and grow from that.
  3. Amaury Krusty Krab Employee
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    Thank you for the reply. I really do appreciate it.

    In regards to the "Unfriend Day," I guess it really did exist, as a lot of other people participated in it. (I wasn't sure if it did or not around the time incident happened.)

    I should have elaborated more on this in the OP. (I did go back and fix a lot of typos, though, haha!) I don't think it's so much that I'm afraid of / hesitant on talking to people, because that's exactly how I made a lot of my friends in my four years of high school -- I just started talking to them and became friends -- but more that I don't like people being upset with / mad at me without knowing why, and sometimes I feel like people are upset with / mad at me by their tone, especially online because it's really hard to tell tones.

    For example, and I hope you don't mind if I use you for the example, let's say I make a comment in a The Spam Zone thread that sounds like I'm calling you stupid, but I'm not, but you take it that way. Let's say I then make a thread in Site Assistance about something, and you reply with, say, "Well, first of all..." While that's not always used in a negative way, it can be (e.g., "Well, if you hadn't done that, I wouldn't be here right now), and by replying like that, it would appear to me that you're upset with / mad at me. However, you don't PM or IM me regarding why you're mad at me, so I'm left in the dark. If I ask, you would probably just ignore me.

    This was just an example, as I know you're obviously not like that, even though I've taken your posts directed at me like that sometimes, too, so I apologize in advance for any potential offense.
  4. daxma One of the Elders of KHV
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    From what you are saying it sounds like there is more than just that one problem said person has with you. Chances are that you've done or said other things that you probably don't see are either offending or annoying him. I've noticed this with some of my own friends but i don't get annoyed and indignant with them for the most part, i call them out on it. The grammar comment was probably just an opening to problems this person might have with you on a personal level but not necessarily that you intentionally went out of your way to do bad by them. If you are reasonably good friends then you should call him out on it and ask him whats the story other than that you shouldn't be concerned.
  5. Honey Lemon Everyone Needs a Little Style
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    I am going to say this as nice as I can.

    It's not YOU, it's the kind of threads you post. You tend to post about things that don't interest anyone. Whether it's a TV show, or even something about your life, you have to stop and think, "Is this something that people will care about or be interested in?" It's ok to do this sometimes, but at the rate that you do it, Amaury... It's just, annoying. None of the things you've posted have offended me because I take it a certain way, in fact, I used to think your threads were funny, but eventually, they just got tedious and annoying.

    You're a good guy Amaury, but you need to think about your actions more often.
    Loriah likes this.

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