I completely agree with you Ikarus. After reading some of these types of posts in this forum, I was thinking the exact same thing. But then I also looked at the other side of why someone would want to post such topics in here. A few I came up with:
-This is cyberspace! Which means that, in the truth of it all, unless we know specific people in the real world before, during or after our posts, no one really knows who we are. This gives us the guts to post such topics. It's like the on-line version of Alcoholics Anonymous. We can certainly conceal as much info about us in our profiles, own 8 user names and have 25 email address all go to the same location which allows us to post deep, symptomatic problems that maybe no one else would be able to answer in real life, perhaps other than a doctor. It makes for comfortability. Think about it, a sensitive question asked to strangers, answered by strangers may be the most secure method to get a question answered - considering that no one really knows anything about us! Consequently, this is also the reason why we see sarcastic and even degrading responses on these types of forums. Cuz I'm sure that we would think twice about our responses to such questions if we were talking to that person face to face.
-It is a friend that needs help and not the poster. And since the friend is relying so much on the poster for some good advice, where else to turn but to a forum full of advice and people who are willing to part with their knowledge?
-Boredom. This is a problem that, at the outset, doesn't seem so bad but later on we figure out that it sucks being bored! What's worse? Having a computer handy while we are bored! Next thing you know, we are posting hypothetical situations, idiotic responses, inflated realities and just general of-the-fly remarks to a fairly intelligent crowd. I know I have been guilty of this a couple of times. It's a rainy Sunday afternoon and there's absolutely nothing to do, geez, I think I'll go to airliners.net and post my views on abortion and see what kinds of responses I get back.
-Looking for the Self-Fulfilling Prophecy. Sometimes it is in these types of forums where one can find acceptance and belonging. Let's say you are about to make a decision (big or small, whatever) but everyone seems to disagree with you, so you post in on-line and then you get that one person that says yes that's a great idea, you should do it! guess what you're gonna do? That's what you've been looking for all along. Forget all the previous responses before that person said yeah. It was a good idea after all since someone agreed with me. It's essentially the answer that you wantd to hear but wanted someone else to validate it. Maybe this is the case of the person who posted the "Coming Out" post. Another perfect example of this (although to a lesser degree) is my "New York" post. I already kinda have an idea of what I'll be doing in NY (see the Statue of Liberty) but if someone says do it! of course I'll post that I will and that it was a great idea.
Anyway that is all that I can come with so far. These are pretty common though from what I have noticed, here and in other forums. I'm not disagreeing with you Ikarus, I'm just giving you another side to your story.
Its better to be on the ground wishing you were in the air than be in the air wishing you were on the ground. Fly safe!