The issue I have with RH is that the vitriol she used on her blog is MILD compared to what she did on twitter and other people's blogs. She's done exactly this to many, many people for at least the last ten years.

I am one of those people.

In her defense, my crime was calling a fictional character a bitch in a review of a book, which I know now is very much not cool and is something I've made an effort to never do again. She linked to my blog on twitter on a near-daily basis for the next six months, calling me (among other things) an illiterate fuck, stupid, hilarious and fun. I have screencaps of days where my blog had ten, fifteen different twitter referrals and I was able to track every single one of them back to RH's twitter account. In the process I also found numerous other people that she was doing the same damn thing to. One of the episodes was so incredibly vile I'm not sure I can discuss it and still have it be safe for work. She never spoke to her victims directly, but the things she said were absolutely horrid and she was very aware that the people she was harassing knew she was doing it. A friend of mine who was a devoted follower of RH stopped paying attention to her when RH encouraged a male rape victim to commit suicide over twitter. There's another documented case of her driving someone else to attempt an OD.

The breaking point for me was when she belittled a comment I made about rape and accused me of glorifying it. I'm a rape victim, and I'd brought it up on the blog more than once prior to making those comments. I weathered about a day and a half of the twitter comments before I replied to her on my blog, which lead in turn to several of her followers posting directly on my blog and criticizing how I was talking about my own recovery. I was not nice in the blog post, and I wasn't that restrained in the comments, but it happened shortly after my traumaversary and my life was pretty screwed up at the time. Her comments complicated a difficult IRL situation, and the knowledge that someone thought I was so horrible a six-month harassment campaign was justified triggered a severe depressive episode.

This was last spring. It started in December of 2012, went through to April or May of 2013, and probably kept going for a while after she started hiding her twitter feed. Which made me incredibly relieved. She was still talking about me but at least I couldn't see it anymore.

What has people so incredibly angry at her is not that she wrote vitriolic reviews of books. It's that she has continually harassed, belittled, criticized and insulted a massive number of people, and more often than not those people were vulnerable and unstable. These attacks were personal, cruel, and way above and beyond anything you'd do in a normal review. These were done in an environment where she controlled the dialogue and thus could not be confronted with how nasty she was. Many of these people don't talk about it because they do not want her back in their lives. Many more people are spreading this information around because they don't want to be associated with someone who has a history of being that toxic, and they want people to be aware.

Prior to her discovering I existed, I liked and respected her and I occasionally enjoyed her blog. Two months after she discovered me I was literally begging her to leave me alone, and it would be another four months before she finally lost interest.

Now I understand that she was building her professional author persona at the same time she was harassing me and a number of others.

That said, I'm sorry that she's going through an awful time in her life and I do hope she makes it through this okay. What is happening to her is unjustifiable. She's in my prayers. I just really wish she hadn't been the one to teach me how shitty this behavior is.