I am going to now address this issue myself.
I have seen many hurtful words flung from blogger to blogger over the whole "Donate to Renee" business. So I am going to clear some things up.
Wednesday I got a text from Ange, wondering if I had seen Renee's blog. No I had not. I was not even aware that she had a blog! Ange sent me the link asked me to look it over and let her know what I thought. After reading the majority of it I noticed that certain things didn't make sense.
1. We had been told that they lost their home due to her husband's cancer and were forced to live in an RV where they were now going to have to battle the cold winter. According to Renee's blog however, they apparently chose, a few years ago, to simplify their life style and get rid of their home and live in an RV. To each his own, as you all know I tend to be judgement free on most people's decisions especially when it doesn't effect me. But...This was just different than what we had been told.
2. We had been told her husband could not work due to the cancer. On her blog, Renee states that after much research they decided to treat her husband's cancer holistically with herbs instead of the traditional chemo. Again to each his own. I have never had cancer, so I don't know what I would choose if I was in his situation. But I do know that going the herbal route is very expensive out of pocket. Insurance will not cover it. And on her blog Renee says that Had her husband gone the Chemo treatments the doctor's estimated that he would have been back to work by October. Which is now. Also different than what we had been told.
3. We were told they had no electricity, had no money, could not afford the basics and had to home school their children because of the cancer. Several different things on their blog suggest that, while they are broke, things are not too the extreme that we had been led to believe. (Such as Renee has a dot com to pay for her photography website. I know I can't afford that.)
Ashlee, Ange and I puzzled over these things and decided to bring them to the attention of another blogger, who I will not name unless she so chooses. She also read over the blog and thought those same things did not add up. I had also emailed Gucci who was kind enough to email me back the facts of Renee and her family's situation as she knew it. Feeling that maybe Gucci did not have all the facts one of us chose to call her and let her know our concerns.
I'll pause here for a moment...At this time the Boobs for Bucks post had already gone live on Gucci's blog. Over a thousand dollars had been raised through Gucci's paypal act that she had set up. If someone who did not care about Gucci and everyone else who had made an effort for Renee and her family, thought that things were not adding up and decided to do something about it, Gucci could have been in a lot of legal trouble! Certain people have assumed that the ones who brought it to Gucci's attention are just malicious jerks with nothing better to do. And yet, we were some of the main ones campaigning to raise money along side Gucci. Ashlee and Ange were hosting giveaways with their own items and paying for the shipping on those as well! (Something that both of them were not really financially able to do.) The rest of us had done posts and had volunteered for Boobs for Bucks. We were actively trying to help this family, who, despite all that wasn't true, is still going through a very hard time.
After one of us called Gucci and spoke to her, she took down her posts. She also emailed us and said she was going to do her own research on the matter, and also read Renee's blog. I have not spoken to her since then so I do not know if she came to the conclusion the rest of us had.
Since it has already been said by someone else I will state that Gucci did call her lawyer. But I will clarify that by stating She did it to see what legal ramifications she could be dealing with. She also returned the money.
All of you who have been reading my blog for awhile know that cancer is a disease that has affected me personally. I not only have cancer cells growing in my cervix, but I lost my dearest and closest friend last year to breast cancer. I was with her through the chemo and radiation and while she was in the hospital in a coma. And I was with her up until she died. I would do anything to help someone battling cancer.
That being said, no one should have to fib details to make their bad situation sound worse. I am not sure if that is what happened here. I do have a copy of the email that was originally sent around asking for every one's support and some of those facts stated are not completely true, which I find odd since the person who wrote that email is supposedly a close friend to Renee.
I would like to think that if I was in Renee's shoes, had friends going to such great lengths to help me, I would have done all I could to correct something they were saying if it was incorrect. Renee feels like that's what she did and I would not assume to call her a liar.
As I have stated before, so many reached out to help and that more than anything is what we should be focusing on. We've been accused of only doing this to gain followers when the truth is we used our status as bloggers to beg for help. Everyone is hurting right now. I don't know a single person who has recovered from the economy taking a dive. We lost everything. We went from living in a beautiful house, with a secure job, getting ready to buy our first home to nothing. Being on state aid. Moving 3 hours away from our home to live in a one room apt. My husband worked 50 hours a week and for 3 months he made no money. We lived on food stamps and state aid. And we were not the only ones. 2 years later and we feel like we are still recovering. I know that Ange, Ashlee and everyone else that donated had to cut into Food money, rent money, electricity bill money just to help out..Only to find out that we were helping people who are in the same boat as us.
Had the actual facts been put before us, I know we still would have done what we could to help. It might not have been to the same extent, but we still would have tried. We still would have kept them in our thoughts and prayers.
No one wanted to take away from a good deed. We just wanted to know the real truth, and in all honesty all we got back from the people who should have been clarifying things from the get go, are cruel words and harshness. That doesn't seem fair. We did not yell at Gucci. We did not threaten her with legal ramifications if she kept asking for donations on this family's behalf. We simply brought her our concerns, and she made her own decisions based on what she felt.
So to Renee and Carl if you want to hate us for this, then I am sorry for you. If you honestly can't put yourselves in our shoes and see how we felt then I pity you. I sit here and I feel bad for you, for all you have gone through, and for all you have left to go through. And I hope that through this post you can see our side of the story. And where we are coming from.
If you can't, then it's your loss. If you can't....Oh well. But I have tried to explain it to you the best way possible....So from here on out you can shut up about it. Now you know what really happened so that gives you no call to keep attacking any of us. And if you do keep it up then we will use our blogger status to your disadvantage. And you will see that we are still holding ourselves together while you call us names. You will see that we haven't even begun to get pissed off or mad. We are still hoping that the good part of you, that you claim exists, will coming out and stop this nonsense. But if you don't...Then you have no idea what you will unleash.
I hope you make the right decision.