Lucky Otters Haven is 2 years old! (Part two)

(Continued from Part One)

Screenshots are all courtesy of The Wayback Machine (which you can spend hours browsing — it’s fascinating in its own right).

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June 27, 2015

Several changes now.  I finally grew a brain and got rid of the appalling “Museum of Narcissism” and from here on out, the title would not change again (except for the removal of the apostrophe).

I also shifted the focus (seen in the subtitle) from “narcissistic abuse” to NPD and BPD in general, as I was beginning to grow tired of just being angry and was starting to want to learn more about these disorders (of course, narcissistic abuse has always been a staple of this blog and still is).   “Aspie” still remained for the time being.   I also had expanded the number of menu items in the subheader.   By now, my follower count was 1,041.

 

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August 11, 2015

LOH was now nearly a year old.  Some important new changes are evident.   I think it’s beginning to resemble the current look more–I’d finally removed “Aspie” from the subheader, as I now had more clarity on what my real problems were (and it wasn’t Aspergers).  Visually too, the look is an improvement, with a darker gray menu bar which made the menu items easier to read.   I probably had a few too many menu items though.  Later I had to consolidate them so some appear now as little dropdowns.  1,115 followers.

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October 11, 2015

Font changes in both the headings, title and text.   The font I chose for the title and headings would not change again until last week.   Still too many menu items so it looks a bit cluttered.   1,221 followers at this point.

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November 12, 2015

The second major facelift.   This new look would stay (with only minor changes) until just one week ago.  The wallpaper and header were both in a green “beehive” pattern, with the header photo-manipulated to be somewhat lighter in the middle so the simplified subhead “walking on the borderline” would stand out.   Menu items now white on black. I think overall it’s a nice look, very professional, but I finally tired of it a week ago and LOH got its third major facelift.

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March 27, 2016

Not too many changes, other than FINALLY consolidating the menu items so it looks a lot less cluttered and easier to read.   1,591 followers.

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June 29, 2016

This is the way this blog looked just prior to the facelift I did last week.   The only real change here is the subheader changed from “walking on the borderline” to “Confessions of a recovering borderline.”  (this change was inspired by my therapist telling me he thought I no longer had BPD).   There were two more screenshots taken in August, but nothing else had changed.

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Finally…

The new look is somewhat of a throwback to its original look.  I think it looks friendlier and more welcoming than the “beehive” look.

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I love Ferdinand Ladera’s moody painting, and wanted to use that again, but I wanted a simple black header this time, so this time I used the painting as the wallpaper instead.    I wasn’t sure how that would turn out, but I love the look, and I like the way the dark trees appear on the right hand side.  I also changed the header fonts and think they’re easier to read, and removed the apostrophe from “Otters”, mainly to simplify the look of the title.  It’s not really ungrammatical, because I’m not the only otter swimming up from the murky waters of an abusive past.

Changes to this blog.

I’ve been snowbound for over two days so I’ve had lots of time to blog, and play with this blog when not writing. I think the minor changes I made are an improvement.

1. I simplified the titles in the headers for a cleaner look

2. I edited down some of the text in my header pages to make understanding and navigating them less confusing

3. Besides changing the name of “My Disorders” to “Read About My Crazy,” I added a Seasonal Affective Disorder tab under it (it now joins BPD and AvPD). I don’t have a complex PTSD tab because that would include almost every post I’ve written.

4. I changed the font. I like it better.

Tomorrow I’ll probably be snowed in again (it’s that bad), so I think I’m going to add a new header tab that lists my essays and humorous stories.

Important updates about this blog.

alice3
New blog Down The Rabbit Hole

Things are beginning to gel together finally, after not quite knowing what direction this blog was going to take, after my shattering discovery about myself early this month.

I’ve been writing (and of course reading) a lot more about healing/treating NPD and BPD, but I felt strongly that those types of articles were out of place on a blog meant for survivors of narcissistic abuse. In the past, I posted them here, but they were becoming numerous as my own self awareness began to percolate to the surface of my conscious mind.

When I made my devastating self-discovery (which is actually one of the three best things that ever happened to me!), I didn’t feel at all comfortable posting those articles here anymore, and decided a separate blog was necessary, so I created Down The Rabbit Hole, intended to document my own experiences on this next stretch of my journey as well as try to offer support to people with BPD and self-aware NPD who want to be well again. A secondary goal is to help spread awareness of mental illness stigma, especially the Cluster B disorders.

It’s all a lot to process but I’ve decided, for now, to keep this blog the same as it’s always been. Almost everyone has been really supportive, and as a victim of abuse myself, I’m there with you. So I’m going to keep posting articles about how to survive narcissistic abuse, my own personal experiences, how to get away from abusers, recognize narcissistic behaviors, research, etc., as well as posting unrelated material as I see fit (and have always done). So you won’t be seeing too many changes. 🙂

Certain articles will (and have been) posted on both blogs, if they’re relevant to both. That’s why you might see double entries on my Twitter feed.

Major changes in the header!

Ch-ch-ch-changes

If you look in the header, you will probably see the headings are completely different. I did some rearranging, renaming, and cleaning up, which meant some of the headers had to be demoted to sub-headers. There were simply too many headers which were becoming unwieldy and making the blog look cluttered, not to mention they were becoming disorganized and hard to navigate. I think this change will make it easier to find what you are looking for.

Hopefully everyone likes the new header arrangement. So take a look, play with the headers and subheaders, and see where your favorite topics are.

Blessings,
Lauren Bennett “Lucky Otter”

Shifting this blog’s focus.

moving_forward

When I started this blog back in September, its primary intent was to provide an outlet for me to journal about my experiences as a victim of narcissistic abuse and try to understand what happened to me. My early articles were far angrier than most of those I write now, because I was just emerging from a long-term relationship with a malignant narcissist and was still suffering from PTSD to some extent. I was finding my bearings as an independent person and learning how to make my own decisions and find out who I really was.

It was the best thing I ever did. Journaling brought me far, so very far–but lately I’ve wondered why I’ve been having more trouble coming up with new ideas and getting less excited about what I do post.

I feel like this blog has been stagnating. I’ve been less interested in focusing on my past and all the negativity that goes with that. I’m moving on and growing, but something happened that really brought home the fact I was ready to take this blog (and me) to the next level.

At first it seemed like a negative, hurtful thing, but today I realized what happened was exactly what needed to happen to bring me to the next level and take this blog new places it hasn’t gone before. As I’ve said so many times before, everything that happens can be a learning experience. People who appear to be your enemies can actually be your teachers.

It was brought to my attention–due to a very controversial article I wrote the other day (far more controversial than I realized it would be!)–that most or many ACONs object to what they think of as my “narc hugging.” Some people have said I’m too wishy washy about them because of statements I have made where I’ve admitted I have some empathy for them (actually I only have empathy for what they could have been, not for the way they are now). Several people I thought were friends have even speculated that I’m a narcissist myself! That hurt a lot. I briefly considered not blogging anymore!

But I think there’s a lot of misunderstanding surrounding Borderlines, who can easily be mistaken for narcissists to those who don’t know much about the other Cluster B disorders. I think that’s why I need to write more about BPD.

I never did and still don’t accept the things narcissists do, and will never forget the abuse they inflicted on me. I will also never stop empathizing and trying to offer support to those of you who have suffered such abuse. I understand how painful and frightening it is. I have been there. But at the same time, I’m simply tired of focusing on all the negatives and on my sad and abusive past. Instead, my desire is to better understand people with NPD (let me reiterate this does NOT in any way mean I condone or approve of their abusive behaviors). This does not in any way mean I think we should give them the benefit of the doubt or continue to stay with them.

I also have recently become interested in further exploring my own Borderline personality disorder, and as a Cluster B disorder, writing about BPD isn’t taking me too far away from the original focus of this blog. I’ve already been writing about BPD a lot more lately anyway.

So to sum up, while I will still address the serious issue of narcissistic abuse and offer a place for victims to vent and get support, future articles will focus more on understanding both NPD and BPD (and other personality disorders), without “selling out” or turning against victims of abuse or forgetting what we have all been through.

I already started this shift when I started writing articles about treating or healing narcissism (I have now included BPD in the static page about that because treatment methods for both disorders are so similar).

I just felt like this blog had reached a place where it couldn’t go any further with the focus it had. I wasn’t getting as excited about writing new posts anymore and I couldn’t figure out why. Now I know why–I needed a change in focus. I didn’t realize that was the solution until several people vehemently objected to the article I mentioned above.

I don’t approve of narcissism, but I simply don’t need all that anger and negativity in my life anymore. I feel like I’m coming to a place where I want to better understand the people who abused me, and that will help me better understand myself.

I realize I may lose a few followers in implementing this shift (I think I already have when I posted the linked article above), but I don’t think it will be many, because really, not a whole lot will change. In addition, I also expect to gain a new type of follower that might have looked askance at this blog before as just another ACON blog. Another way of saying this is I hope more Borderlines will follow this blog.

I feel like I’m growing and moving forward, and making this slight change will help me with this transition. You may have noticed I changed the blog’s title back to it’s original, “Lucky Otter’s Haven” and took out “Museum of Narcissism” because I will also be writing about BPD just as much as NPD. I also think “haven” has a more positive feel to it than “museum of narcissism,” which suggests a sort of freak show. Running a freak show is not my purpose or desire. I also changed the tagline.

I hope most of you welcome these changes and continue to read and support this blog.

God bless,
Lauren Bennett

Where is THIS spike coming from!?

statspike

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417 views? My best ever (November 21) was 541. I have about 4 more hours until WP clock switches to tomorrow (mine is set wrong–it’s actually only 3:19 PM here). I wonder if I can beat that 541…????

I’m not sure where the spike is coming from though. I know which articleit’s this one.
It’s had a ton of Facebook shares. It’s also coming up on page ONE of Google! Is it going VIRAL?
But who is doing it? I doubt it’s Sam again. He doesn’t write about this kind of stuff.

The mystery of the day. I WILL solve this puzzle.

And if it’s someone reading this, fess up!

I had a good feeling about this blog today and just logged in and…

holyshit

Message from WordPress:

A spike in your stats
Your blog, Lucky Otter’s Haven & Museum of Narcissists, appears to be getting more traffic than usual!

74 hourly views

7 hourly views on average

Is it the changes I made last night to this blog or traffic caused by the surprise appearance by (in)famous narcissist Sam Vaknin?

But why question it? It’s just awesome, is all.

stewie

ETA: I don’t know how to make a screencap of the graph, but this was my best day ever — 436 views!

I figured it out. It wasn’t hard. My stats page shows the two articles about Mr. Vaknin are KILLING it on the web. They both have a lot more views than anything else I’ve posted, and one of them has been linked to Twitter 31 times and both combined on Facebook even more times than that. Going viral maybe?!?!?!o_o
My first article about Sam is now on PAGE TWO of Google. And I thought my article about my son being furry was popular. Whoa.

I know I sound like a horrible narcissist and I apologize for that, but damn, this is EXCITING! I don’t expect it to last though.

Mr. Vaknin should be getting plenty of narcissistic ego-boosting from the fact he’s such a stats-booster. I’m sure he already knows that though. LOL

Did you notice any changes?

You may have noticed a few changes on this blog.

— I changed the name of the blog by adding “and Museum of Narcissists” after “Lucky Otter’s Haven.” I wanted to title to include something about its primary subject matter, even though as always, I will write about other things too. I considered “Lucky Otter’s Museum of Narcissists” but that seemed to sound too much like a freak show and the “haven” part is important, because I want victims of abuse to feel like this really is a haven, because it is.

— After changing the title, it went to two lines, and I didn’t like the look of that. I wanted the title to all fit on one line, so I changed the font style from Jubilat Regular to Jubilat Light and reduced the font size down from 3 to 2.

— I changed the default user icons from the standard WordPress design to the monsters. They’re cuter.

I hope everyone likes the changes.