Why I joined Gaiscioch

Wise words from the leader of Gaiscioch:

“If a man comes in to your home and relieves himself on your carpet are you going to stand by and offer him some coffee?
If they then sit in front of your child and teach them a full new vocabulary that you later will have to have a long uncomfortable talk about, are you going to feed them dinner?
If your with us, your with us. Our home is yours. My kin are your kin. My child is your child. WE are Gaiscioch. This house is ours.
We hold ourselves on a higher bar than any other guild. Both as human beings and as players. We expect all of you to respect one another enough to live by our credo, follow our rule, and make sure that everyone who enters our home displays the same amount of respect you do.
We can not allow outsiders to come in and desecrate our sanctuary. The day you joined us you knew we had 1 Rule. Blades Out, Not In.”

Here’s my questions then.

  • If you are invited into a home, invited into a family, and then a member of your new family spits in your face, calls you names, and strikes you without cause or warning, will you stand for it?
  • If you are helpful but suddenly accused of acting “above your station” for asking someone what they needed when they asked for help, were you spitting on the carpet?
  • If one person is allowed to flout the rules constantly, and you never see any reaction to it, is it justifiable to blame you for not taking the rules seriously because nobody else seems to?
  • If a family member prods and pokes and pulls a blade on you, is that not allowed and fair to defend yourself and attempt to disarm their poison?
  • If you organize a family event and suddenly there are whispers all around that you have a hidden agenda, that the event (which was needed by many not just you) goes against all family values – when it obviously doesn’t – are you allowed to speak up in your defense? Are you allowed to be hurt and angry for being so completely misunderstood?
  • If your family sits down to an excellent feast for a holiday, which you helped to prepare, then refuses to allow you room at the table by shoving over, and refuses to allow you to partake in the feast, then tells you that they would have included you if the tables hadn’t been decided already… do you stay in that family or go out in the world alone and rely on the kindness of strangers rather than stay to be insulted more by their eating in front of you while you starve?
  • If a family member picks a fight with you, draws in other members to ignore you, belittle your efforts on behalf of the guild, and then accuses you of bringing drama when you say HEY THAT’S NOT RIGHT… is that not bringing drama?

Ah, how easy it is to invalidate another human being’s experience. Just call righteous anger a flame or a troll. Trivialize all criticism by calling it drama. Just pretend that you gave every kindness and they are ungrateful, dismissing everything they gave to you: their dedication, their time, their helpfulness, goodwill, going broke crafting for others, recruiting, and caring for guildmates. Ignore their feelings while constantly demanding that they consider other people’s feelings. Dismiss ongoing problems by proclaiming the person telling you about them is “holding a grudge for something that happened long in the past” when the problems remain active to this day.

I’m not the only one who left. I gave constructive criticism when I left, which was trivialized because I said I was feeling hurt and angry. I’m never gonna be a good little emotionless robot follower type, if you have a problem with that then that’s your problem. Others have left without saying a word, or only saying that they’re joining their friends’ guild – rather than bringing their friends into the guild. I cared enough to say something, but, they’re doing fine without me and my silly, stupid caring.

Obviously, the Gaiscioch marketing machine will roll on, and this little David of a post isn’t gonna bring down the Goliath of cliquish uncaring in a guild which claims to be a family and which has core rules that are supposed to lead to people treating others well, and to family togetherness.

Cliques can make a guild strong – they can also make it a lonely place for a new member. Again, I challenge the Gaiscioch “family” to remember it’s a FAMILY. Again, I challenge those of you who attacked me to show me an example of excellent leadership – preferably one that is more than mere words, and which doesn’t invalidate the validity of another human being’s experiences or emotions. Personally I feel that leadership is not about staying silent in the face of injustice. If that means I bring drama, so be it.

I’m not scared of drama or of emotions. I don’t need to trivialize other people’s experiences to justify what I do or how I lead.

As for me, will be returning to my previous guild, as my guildmates there asked me repeatedly to return and lead it actively again.

I’m still sad, hurt, and angry. The ideals of Gaiscioch were what I was looking for in a guild, and several of the structures in place are quite innovative. I will miss several amazing people who did hold true to what I considered the best values of the guild: kindness, generosity, helpfulness, inclusiveness. But I will just have to build the kind of guild I’m looking for, and hope that holding true to my values and ideals will help it succeed.