I’m thinking this thread seems to be evolving from a simple question of the lack of couples on the site to a general discussion of the relative merits of civility vs. tough love, and exactly when and how "tough love" crosses over into just general assholery.
Thumos you have, as usual, constructed a well thought out, vigorous (and, as always, verbose) defense of using strong clear language and direct advice. I can’t necessarily disagree with any of your points there. It probably wouldn’t surprise you to learn that I had almost the same discussion in the men’s forum about 7 years ago. But it might surprise you to learn that, at that time, I was the one arguing your side.
So I get it, sometimes direct and strong descriptive language is not only called for, but even necessary to snap someone out of the fugue of complacency that sometimes results from extreme trauma.
I don’t so much disagree with the merits of the occasional verbal "slap up side the head" as I do with the way I see it being so vigorously applied as of late. I think that someone else has already made the point, but it bears repeating that, lately anyway, there seems to be almost a mad rush of BS’ almost tripping over themselves to be the first, the firmest, the fastest and yes even the furious-est (Vin Diesel has my permission to use that ) post out the gate.
It’s not just one post applying some tough love to wake some poor BS up. It’s literally post after post after post telling new BS’ that: It’s almost certain that their WS did more than they think, with more people than they think, in more places than they think, in more degrading ways than they think, that every word out of their WS’ mouth is almost certainly a lie, that they are almost certainly still carrying on the affair, that their WS is absolutely not remorseful but just sorry that they got caught, that they are clearly and obviously their WS’ plan B and that the only reason their WS might want to try and salvage their marriage is because of financial security, that their children may not even be theirs…
Are some or all of those things accurate? Maybe. Maybe some of them. Maybe all of them. Maybe none of them. We don’t really know. Are they possibilities that a newly betrayed person should probably be aware of? Sure. Might they need a little tough love to see that? Again sure.
But do they need to have it hammered down on them over and over until the weight of it drives them to their fucking knees? Not fucking likely.
So why do I see that happening? I have some thoughts. And I have come to them through painful experience. I think that sometimes, not always, but sometimes BS’ dealing with the pain of infidelity are trying to come to terms with feeling weak, with feeling victimized, with feeling disempowered, with feeling helpless in the face of situations out of their direct control. And that in an effort to feel stronger, less victimized, more powerful, less helpless, more in control, they rush to project the hardest line possible against wayward behavior.
Understandable, even acceptable, on an individual basis. But a bit more problematical when it comes to groups. I think there is a danger of a weird sort of "virtue signaling" occurring. With BS’ trying to prove to one another (and maybe themselves) that they are the toughest on Infidelity. They are the biggest hard ass, that they are, to use their own charming term, not a "cuck".
I think I’ve used the expression before: "Re-litigating their own situation through the lens of someone else’s". Understandably tempting to do, but probably not terribly helpful to the person to whom it is being done.
It funny to, because you see almost the exact same thing happening from time to time on the wayward forum. Some newly repentant WS, anxious to prove just how reformed they are, what an A+ student of remorse they are, comes out firing with both barrels at every new WS that pops their head up.
Again, a weird version of "virtue signaling".
Having said all that, I don’t claim to have a solution, (I don’t know… maybe everyone could get together and agree to take turns: this Tuesday I get to be the hard ass, Wednesday it’s Thumos, Thursday…). Except to say that, if the tone of the site has, as some would contend, trended to a greater level of assholery, the best solution I can think of is for people who disagree with that trend to start being louder in the opposite direction.
This website isn’t being driven by any one particular person, not even a team of people (no not even the mods and admins). It’s a community, and like any community the mood and tone tends to be set by those that show up and talk the oftenest and the loudest. Doesn’t mean that they are right, just more noticeable.
If you don’t like the mood or the tone, if you think the ones that are the "loudest" are wrong? Well then start showing up more often and presenting the opposing position. It’ll take while to change the course but change it will, eventually.
Come on all you nice, thoughtful, measured, reasonable people! Sisoon can’t do it all by himself!
All that being said. I would enjoy further discussion of the relative merits and pitfalls of couples being on SI together. The original purpose of this thread. End threadjack?