The Newbie Mentoring Program
The Newbie Mentoring Program is a FREE peer-mentorship for posters–you do not need to be new to the board–who need some guidance dealing with their spouse’s MLC and with their own cycling emotions. This program will help newcomers adjust to the community and can jump start socialization.
Being assigned a specific mentor does not mean another moderator or mentor will not post to that person as well. It simply means that there is a person whose job it is to check on a specific individual and answer their questions. Sometimes we get so busy reading one thread that we miss others. A mentor’s mentees are their priority on the board and mentees may go directly to their mentor with questions.
The Mentor’s Role
So, what will the role of a mentor be on this forum? Do we receive a mentor because we are new to the forum or new to MLC? The reason I ask is because though I have not been on the forum for very long, my spouse has been in MLC for quite some time.
New posters who start their own story thread will be asked if they are interested in having a mentor. We have Mentors who specialize in helping Left Behind Spouses in the early and most raw stages after Bomb Drop, as well as Mentors whose specialty is guiding those who are further along in detachment (which usually means they are more distant from Bomb Drop). Mentors are available for those who need them, regardless of how long ago their MLCer dropped the Bomb.
Below is the list of General Mentor Duties which is posted on the Private Mentor Board.
- Introduce yourself to your mentees.
You may do this by Personal Message or on their thread.
- Be reasonably available to offer support and guidance.
- Continue to check-in on them—either via their thread (and post) or by Personal Message if they are not posting.
- Encourage them to continue to post to their story thread.
- Be familiar with the site articles for referencing.
- Direct them to resources on or off site and suggest other threads—such as another LBS with a similar situation.
- Answer their questions—even if the answer is I don’t know.
Even better, help them discover answers to their questions.
- Encourage Self-Focus and Detachment.
But recognize that they don’t want to hear that they aren’t detached over and over again—that is one of the biggest complaints.
- Share your insights and experiences.
- Accept their process to recovery and help them to accept it.
- Let them know of any restrictions for availability or contacting you.
So if you aren’t around the board on weekends, just let them know when you introduce yourself.
Paying it Forward
Who are the mentors?
Posters are selected to become mentors from their history of advising others on the board. They are or were Standers like yourself and are experiencing or have experienced their spouse’s midlife crisis. They are familiar with the stages of MLC and typical MLC traits and can guide you through your initial panic and anxiety toward detachment. Their time and support are given freely while most are also dealing with their own MLC and fall out. Someday, when you feel confident, you can pay it forward by passing on what you have learned to others–especially newcomers. This is a continuous sharing forum and everyone, even the mentors benefit from support and feedback.
Your mentors are people too. Most are still going through their spouse’s MLC and thus they are going through the same turmoil as you. Please respect that they are busy with other mentees, other posters not assigned mentors, moderation duties and most importantly their own lives which includes dealing with MLCers as well as kids and careers. Give them a break. They are your peers, not trained counselors.
With that in mind please refrain from abusing the private message privilege by bombarding them. It is acceptable to PM them on occasion if there is something you prefer not to share publicly. But by posting on your own story thread you will benefit by receiving feedback from not only your mentor, but the other posters on the board. You will find friends and receive advice. It will also help your mentor as they bounce their advice off of other advice. They are not experts and thus they will not always know what to say or how to say it to a particular person. The open forum provides a greater advantage than private correspondence. It is also an advantage in that your situation and the advice you receive will benefit others when it is available on the forum.
This is why I am not assigning mentors to everyone who registers. You must post a story thread to be assigned a mentor. There are more people who lurk without posting than who post. The mentors do not have the energy to deal with every single person that reads the forum.
How it Works
All mentorships last 6 weeks and expire automatically. The Simple Machines Forum (smf) does not have a fancy system for setting up this program, so I will be manually assigning mentees to mentors as well as assigning the start and expiration dates through the subscription function. These can be extended upon request or you can request a mentor change. Extensions may not be with the same mentor if that person is already booked. If you are a new poster, I may miss your post. If I miss you, please send me a Private Message through the forum with the subject heading I Want a Mentor. When I assign you a mentor I will send you a Private Message and copy your mentor on the message.
When I assign you a mentor I will send you a Private Message and copy your mentor on the message.
So for those of you who are now assigned mentors, how is it working for you?
What are your thoughts about the program?
Any ideas to improve it?