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Hi there. Please, sit down. Go grab a stiff drink. I'll warn you now, this is going to be a long post. I'll do my best to abridge it and narrow down some of the finer details, but it's still probably going to be eclipsing the charecter limit. If you don't like long, depressing stories, then you can leave. I won't mind. So...I guess all stories start at the beginning, right? The beginning for this one goes all the way back to late 2010/Early 2011 or something, I forget precisely when. I was introduced to the show by a friend at the time (he and I have parted seperate ways since then however), roughly about the tail end of the first Season - roughly between Episodes 25 and 26 ("Party of One" and "Best Night Ever"). However for me, I started all the way back at the beginning with the first episode and watched progressively from there. And honestly? I liked it. I make it no secret that I have high standards and view everything though the same scope - for us, the word "Nostalgia" doesn't exist. Regardless of it's time and place or Audiance, if a show is good it's good. If it's bad or just not aged well, well... Anyways, I think it's during the interrim between Seasons where we became...assimilated. The Brony fanbase was a differant place back then, and I have fond memories of those Halcyon days. This pretty much reached a peak on Ponibooru, where I was forced to admit one of the deepest, darkest and most abhorrant truths publically. Any other fandom would have either been reviled, or torn us apart like a pack of savage animals. Here instead, I was still loved and accepted with open arms. It's one of the few happy memories I kept with me. It's a short while later I started having a bizarre, feverish dream about Fluttershy and a giant Pony. That dream would later manifest itself as Something Broken, which I wrote though sickness, starvation and depression...I was having a low period, and writing it was a way to help overcome depression. The giant pony - Atlas - would later become my Ponysona. His modern personality however has changed radically from the FanFiction, and I've entertained the idea of giving it an update. An update that'd probably never happen. At any rate, the story was moderately successful, even if I thought it could have been much, much better (the pacing - despite it being 18 pages long - felt rushed in my view for example). Oh sure it wasn't My Little Dashie or Haunting Nightmare, but I can at least take pride in the fact it was moderately successful. That, and it's the only complete FanFiction of anything I've written to date. Things were rolling high for me...until I encountered, well...as Riptide would describe him "a complete jerk" (Riptide used much, much harsher words when this guy was bought up though). The relationship only lasted a couple of weeks, and in hindsight I'm surprised I tolerated him for so long - the guy kept making demands and issuing orders, didn't reprociate any sign of loyalty, but the kicker was that he insulted a very close personal friend of mine. You do not do that. At all. Then Season 2 happened. Wow. Never mind the Derpy Controversy, when the Season wasn't "meh" it was polarisingly bad. To quickly go over some of it - the charecters became wildly exaggerated beyond their first Season selves and came off as flat charectures, a wildly out of control fanservice engine (of which things like the Derpy Controversy are a small part of) and I think this is where the more regular parts of fandom - the parts of fandom I don't like - started to really take hold. Worse, many people hailed these changes as "for the better" or absolutely adored it. If you want me to give a quick example, Lesson Zero is the episode I commonly cite as where things went wrong, as it displays all of Season 2's flaws in some form or another. And yet it's one of the most popular episodes of the Season, despite standing in complete contradiction to the show itself. And for the record, no I don't hate just that episode of the Season. I loathe that particular episode with fiery passion. Other bad episodes I've cited as being bad include The Mysterious Mare Do Well, Dragon Quest (I even acknowledge that this one is in truth the worst episode of the Season. Lesson Zero is only brought up more because I view the episode as much, much more poisonous and harmful to the show), The Last Roundup, Luna Eclipsed, It's About Time, A Friend in Deed and Putting Your Hoof Down. A sad irony considering my all time favourite episode (Read it and Weep if anyone's wondering) is from this Season. ...Which I guess brings me to one of the most commonly misinterpreted points. See, when most people ask me about the Derpy Controversy, they expect me to say "I loved it wholeheartedly" or "I think Derpy is an intentional jab against the mentally disabled." My answer is, "I think the scene needed a little more time in the editing room." I liked the scene, and it was probably the only good moment in the episode. However, the killer is Derpy's voice. Yes I know Derpy's voice actor was unaware of her gender, but this is where a little research would have gone a long way. The end result just made her look and sound brain dead dumb, which combined with the name, well...I can see the "intentional jab at the mentally disabled" side of things. It doesn't help that Derpy's name originated within 4Chan, and that popular use of the terms "Derp", "Derpy" and "Herp" on the internet are usually associated with stupidity, or more specifically are used (or misused) as a slur along the lines of "Autistic" or "ASSBURGERS". Just saying they could have avoided all this by doing a little research. It also opens a hole with Winter Wrap Up, where the same pony is identified as the less offensive "Ditzy Doo", and the name is used interchangeably with Derpy. I myself am actually entirely ambivilant towards Derpy's existance. I simply just don't care about Derpy. Though her voice will always be the voice of BaldDumboRat (in my opinion). However, it's here where the seeds of hatred were sown. I was as I knew the sole fan who felt this way. Some of the others I had seen took it to levels I'd consider to be completely absurd. And people commonly dismiss me as "overthinking it". Over time, this lead to alienation within the Fandom. And the alienation and loneliness lead itself to madness and psychotic hatred. I tried to do talk about it with various parties, but my argument was usually dissmissively shrugged off as "your overthinking it" and that would be the end. People were not interested and just expected me to simply bow down and worship the Faust like everyone else. Setting asides the fact Faust and I have some ideological differances, I simply couldn't bring myself to do it. Things reached a peak during one attempt a few months ago. Admittedly, a lot of this one rests on my shoulders - instead of hand typing a long tirade like this, I chose to utilise a (cut) review from my days as a "critic". The response was so bad, so aggressive and so hurtful that I actually had an emotional meltdown pretty much on the spot. I couldn't bear to face them again after that, so I left them. As a final insult however, there was a pair of artists I was good friends with. We traded art, talked and I tried not to trounce their relationship (these artists were a couple, aged 15 and 19. I should point out I'm 22. Isn't it technically pedophillia (or at the very least creepy) to try romancing a 15 year old girl?). Shortly after the announcement of Equestria Girls though, the pair made the choice to leave the Fandom. I gave them my full, undivided support...and for my trouble, I was betrayed. I wanted to try and stay friends, but in turn I recived hate mail and a block as thanks. I couldn't cope with it, so the account was shut down. However, I would set up another account over a month after the incident. I still liked to draw, even if I'm a terrible, terrible artist. So, you might ask where we are now, or the point of all this? Well to answer the first one, I'm actively trying to enjoy the Comic. It's not the greatest, but the writing is a step up from where the show seems to have gone at least. And some of the charecters even have parts that sound more like their Season 1 Charecterisations! Somehow, the writers from the Comic are outdoing the current show writing staff. However, I find myself unable to watch the show any more without pain and discomfort. Previously, I had only really felt pain when a Musical number started playing. I'm not sure why, but the Musicals in the show actually trigger physical and mental pain, . Now, it's just become painful to watch. A lot of people right now just expect me to drop everything and leave... ...And belive it or not, we have tried to leave or forget about it many times. It however isn't happening at all, and forcing it just seems to make everything worse. The only other methord I can think of - a Purge - actually caused Brain Injury the last time I tried it. I became noticably less intelligent when that happened. And the point of all this? On a psychology level, trying to find some level of acceptance. Right now we're in the middle of a massive Culture Shock - and I'm not just talking about Ponies when I say that. Our entire way of life is collapsing around us, and I am trying so hard to resist. That however is a topic for another day, I want to try and keep this one to Ponies. The truth is, I wanted to move here for some time. I'd have moved earlier, if I wasn't so, well...terrified of Bronies. Though my own misguided, stupid mistakes and the general consensus of others (be it though not caring or swarming over us like a shoal of angry pirranahs), I think an internal phobia of the fandom has formed. Despite this, I don't want to view all Bronies as bad people, because they're not. I had a good home here in the fandom once, which goes to prove something. At any rate, I've been talking long enough. I've got to go get ready for an appointment with INGEUS (the Jobseeking agency I'm with). I'll leave this here in the Support and Advice thread and read anything posted when I get back.