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Author Topic: How do you deal with learning onlinefriends have passed?  (Read 396 times)
Lazaras
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« on: April 08, 2020, 07:20:15 pm »

Last night I got word a friend I'd had for the past decade and a little change has been dead for the past month. Died the day after I spoke with them last actually.

My interactions were a very VERY narrow slice of their life, and I knew they had problems. For a few months prior they'd been afraid of being thrown out of their home with not enough resources or help to find somewhere new. Wasn't anything I knew to do other than try keeping them company. Thingsl ooked like they stabilized. Like maybe it would be OK.

that last day it was mostly just us hanging out, talking. Glad things were maybe starting to find an equalibrium. It was nice. Peaceful.

People would argue i barely knew them, that they wern't 'really' friends given how narrow my interaction window was, but at the same time?

I miss them. I don't know if me metaphorically showing up on their facebook memorial thing is kosher either. I just know they were a part of my life, and now they're gone and had been for a month.

...I don't know what is proper here.

https://www.weaverfuneralhomes.com/obituaries/Sean-Anthony-Clayton?obId=12399442
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Mercury Wells
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« Reply #1 on: April 08, 2020, 07:54:45 pm »

Sorry about your mate.  Sad
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Banfili
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« Reply #2 on: April 09, 2020, 12:10:46 am »

Lazaras, did you know this person in real life, or as a cyber friend? It doesn't matter either way, he was a friend.
How you become friends is irrelevant. It doesn't matter how long you know someone, or how short your relationship has been, whether they have lived next-door for decades, or if you have never physically met them, you have make a connection that is just as valid as any other relationship, and you have just as much right to grieve as you would for the physical friends you have in your life.

As for the Facebook memorial page, yes, visit and leave a message to say you miss him and the part, however small, that he played in your life. A simple message expressing regret and loss is perfectly acceptable.

I have a 'cyber-friend' in New Zealand who is on limited time because of cancer. I have never met this person. Our relationship came about because our respective fathers were in the same Air Force Squadron in World War 2. I am hoping that I will be told of his eventual passing, and I know that I will be deeply grieved by his loss.
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Mercury Wells
Rogue Ætherlord
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I insiste that you do call me WELLS. :)


« Reply #3 on: April 09, 2020, 12:57:07 am »

My disabled son’s amazing gaming life in the World of Warcraft.

Not the same, but...
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Banfili
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« Reply #4 on: April 09, 2020, 01:46:38 am »


Wells, I must disagree - very much the same, or at least, very similar. The only way we know any of us are still here is when we post. If someone doesn't post for a while, there are questions - how will we know?
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Synistor 303
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« Reply #5 on: April 09, 2020, 02:50:55 am »


Wells, I must disagree - very much the same, or at least, very similar. The only way we know any of us are still here is when we post. If someone doesn't post for a while, there are questions - how will we know?

Well, Will Howard hasn't been online since early March, so I am worried about him. He used to contribute very regularly on the Limerick thread and for the past few weeks - nothing...  Sad
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Cora Courcelle
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« Reply #6 on: April 09, 2020, 01:26:24 pm »

Sorry for your loss Lazarus.
If it was my family member I think I would get great comfort from knowing how many lives my loved one had touched so my advice is definitely add something.
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« Reply #7 on: April 09, 2020, 01:52:36 pm »

Last night I got word a friend I'd had for the past decade and a little change has been dead for the past month. Died the day after I spoke with them last actually.

My interactions were a very VERY narrow slice of their life, and I knew they had problems. For a few months prior they'd been afraid of being thrown out of their home with not enough resources or help to find somewhere new. Wasn't anything I knew to do other than try keeping them company. Thingsl ooked like they stabilized. Like maybe it would be OK.

that last day it was mostly just us hanging out, talking. Glad things were maybe starting to find an equalibrium. It was nice. Peaceful.

People would argue i barely knew them, that they wern't 'really' friends given how narrow my interaction window was, but at the same time?

I miss them. I don't know if me metaphorically showing up on their facebook memorial thing is kosher either. I just know they were a part of my life, and now they're gone and had been for a month.

...I don't know what is proper here.

https://www.weaverfuneralhomes.com/obituaries/Sean-Anthony-Clayton?obId=12399442
I never know what to say or do in these situations myself.

Sorry for your loss.
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Lazaras
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« Reply #8 on: April 11, 2020, 02:50:50 am »

Talked to the person who's community both me and my friend were most recently part of and added theirs to the site memorial alongside others who had passed over the years. It may not be much, but their physical remains have been burnt and scattered. Pending money afreeing up may put a donation in on a charity they liked as they didn't want flowers or other ornimentation.

...I keep expecting an email from them, or to see them log in. It both feels real, and i keep hoping it isn't.

This will pass in time. One of the hazards of the medium.
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MWBailey
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« Reply #9 on: April 11, 2020, 03:24:21 pm »

I'll add somewhat to this. Mainly, in response to the question of how we of Brass Goggles will know if someone has passed. Some of what I'm about to write might seem callous or even downright insensitive, but please know in advance that it is not intended thus. It's just the way things sometimes go in the way of the online population.

Back in the day, when "chat" was the big medium for talking to others more or less immediately online, people (or rather, their chat personas) came and went all the time. Some would come on, get hugely popular, and then suddenly disappear and be unreachable. After a while, sometimes, someone purporting to be a relative of the person would log in and identify themselves to us, and give news of the person's death, disablement or whatever.

The years moved on as they will and must, and we got used to the idea that this or that person was no longer a part of our lives online.

But sometimes, people would show up again. Sometimes they'd log in with the same old moniker, sometimes with a new one. Sometimes (rather often, in truth), they would re-establish themselves under the new moniker, try to create a whole new persona, and basically try to "fool everybody all the time," so to speak. As I recall, it almost never worked for longer than a couple of weeks; sooner or later, they all snapped, or tripped themselves up, or opened their heart to a former crush, or whatever from the previous persona, and just completely blew their own cover wide open. It became such a prevalent situation that people all over the map, be it cyber or IRL, started calling it "Chat Death," meaning a faked demise for the purpose of ducking out.

Not saying that's what's going on with departed BG folks, but my nascent, experience-based cynicism won't let me completely rule it out, either.

Short of contacting the disappeared dear friend's family members and trying to get some kind of closure, there's not really any way to determine whether a person has died or just stopped posting. About the only indication you can get as to whether it's permanent or not is if it continues to be permanent, years down the line.

It seems kind of unfair to those left behind, I suppose, but in regard to people like Will Howard, or Jake von Slatt, or the many others who've dropped off the BG map over the last few years, sometimes people just get sick of an online medium, or just the internet in general, especially if they're of the older set. Our portrayal section on here used to be a hotbed of activity, but the group of us who were into it largely got fed up, or lost interest in other ways, and now you hardly ever see a new post or comment *shrug*.

People in other parts of BG?

Jake, everybody pretty much knows about, who were around at the time. He got fed up and said so, and hasn't been back since, so far as we, or at least I, know.

Will? I'd like to think he's just lurking, but he's like me, getting on up there in years, and has some kind of condition if I remember correctly, so it's hard to say for sure. Same for a lot of others. One or two I know of are supposedly composing SF novels and have IRL lives that preclude wasting time in forums, and no, sorry, I don't feel right revealing whom, lacking specific permission so to do *shrug, again*.

Lazarus, my condolences for you and re your friend. I know from personal experience just how difficult and emotional such a situation can be,  and I do not intend to pooh-pooh or belittle your grief, far from it. My prayers for you, wanted or not (it's just something that I do).

Other folks, don't assume death where it hasn't been declared. You literally never really know.
« Last Edit: April 11, 2020, 03:39:15 pm by MWBailey » Logged

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Lazaras
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Have Wierd; Will Travel.


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« Reply #10 on: April 11, 2020, 04:38:43 pm »

Sadly true and I only trust what I have because it has been verified by people I trust not to bosh me on the matter. My friend has been away for a few weeks or a month at a time. I figured life simply happened, annoying but it happens.

Part of me still halfway hopes this ia some sort of cruel joke but given the source ofnews? I have to accept what is there.
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