Trolls – don’t get sucked into the vortex

//Trolls – don’t get sucked into the vortex

Trolls – don’t get sucked into the vortex


A troll is a person who posts deliberately provocative messages with the intention of causing maximum disruption and argument. They exist in the cyberspace worlds of Twitter, Facebook, comment threads and message boards.

The other day I tweeted:

@gayambassador #HICHURCH NB I don’t fight with conservative anti-gay christians. Instead of fighting I overcome ignorance and misinformation with truth.

Then @OrganicMarriage  tweeted a reply

@gayambassador U belong 2 your father the devil, He has always hated truth, there is no truth in him  #truthxchanged

There’s often a huge temptation to respond to a message like OrganicMarriage’s. How dare they make such outrageous statements. I MUST defend myself.

BUT….resist the temptation to respond because if you don’t you’ll find it becomes a toxic vortex, which draws you in, winds you up, spins you around, stresses you out, drains you and eventually burns you out. After you have invested time and energy in the back and forth engagement with the troll you realise that absolutely nothing has been achieved. All you have done is gone around and around in circles. While you thought you were defending the truth and stand up for what is right but actually they were feeding off you…. like a parasite. YOU were giving them the oxygen to stay alive by responding to them.

Nothing’s changed…certainly not them.

To respond is to argue. An argument takes at least two people. If you don’t respond then they are talking to the wall…lost in space…cyberspace.

Leave the truth of your original statement to do its work on those it was meant to reach.

Use your time more effectively; with people who want to talk AND listen and have questions you can answer rather than those whose minds are made up. My experience is that there are more of the former than the latter. Thank God!

Don’t automatically react. Consciously choose your battles and use your time effectively with people of value.

More lessons here. 15 things I’ve learnt discussing homosexuality and Christianity.

By |2017-04-29T13:14:56+00:00March 14th, 2013|Categories: General|Tags: , , , |6 Comments

About the Author:

Anthony Venn-Brown
Anthony Venn-Brown is one of Australia’s foremost commentators on faith and sexuality. His best-selling autobiography 'A Life of Unlearning – a preacher’s struggle with his homosexuality, church and faith', details his journey from being one of the first in the world to experience religious gay conversion therapy, becoming a married, high profile preacher in Australia's growing mega-churches, such as Hillsong, to living as an openly gay man. Anthony was the co-founder and former leader of Freedom2b. He is an educator and consultant on LGBT/faith issues and leader in deconstructing the ex-gay/reparative/conversion therapy myth. Anthony is the founder and CEO of Ambassadors & Bridge Builders International. Anthony has been recognised on a number of occassions for his contribution and impact including being twice voted one of 'The 25 Most Influential Gay and Lesbian Australians’.


  1. Bill Prickett March 14, 2013 at 12:17 pm - Reply

    Thanks, as always, for your insight, Anthony. I have had to learn this lesson the hard way–by experience. Spent too much time reasoning with the trolls. Such a waste of time and energy…and in the end, it merely gives them the attention they want.

    • Anthony Venn-Brown March 14, 2013 at 11:44 pm - Reply

      yes a lesson many of us have had to learn the hard way…..when we find ourselves angry, frustrated and worn out.

  2. sophiachokhmah March 14, 2013 at 9:11 pm - Reply

    Yeah people like that can suck the life right out of you (as Bill said), if you let them 🙁

  3. Paul May 3, 2013 at 9:28 am - Reply

    Thanks Anthony for the reminder and saving me from these types of conversations in the past … you are right … they a dysfunctional and co-dependant the majority of the time. Paul – London

    • Anthony Venn-Brown May 4, 2013 at 8:49 am - Reply

      its too easy to get sucked in….their comments trigger us. It takes self control to walk away and leave them in their ignorance, stupidity and bad energy.

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