Please read. I know it's long but this is very important.
I am going to start and end this post with my apologies. I truly am so very sorry because I'm about to tell you how much I've let you all down and am even more sorry for where this has lead me.
First, I am very nearly reaching the point where I can no longer keep Autcraft online but even worse, reaching the point where I will lose my children and my home. I've never ever wanted it to come to point this, obviously but I also never wanted to have anyone know about it. My personal life is supposed to be personal but I have to face the reality that it now begins to affect a lot of other people's lives as well.
In late 2012, my Aspergers diagnosis cost me my marriage. Then in June 2013, I started Autcraft. I thought I could manage, I thought I could go on.
Autcraft turned out to be more of a full time job than my full time job. It required 10-14 hour days from me (sometimes more), seven days a week. Holidays weren't holidays for me, they were my busiest days. Several server moves, maintenance, fixes, updates, building things, playing with kids and talking for hours and hours with both children and adults alike about their most personal and vulnerable moments.
The other admins have all said and agreed that it's the most stressful "job" they've ever had but also the most rewarding. But they don't do even half of what I do and yet they still put in crazy hours without getting a single moment to just stop and play.
Near the end of 2013, I got court documents stating that my ex wanted to take my children from me, get child support and spousal support too. I tried to get legal aide but they had already given it to her so I was not eligible. I had to borrow money and apply for credit cards to pay legal fees.
My job struggled, Autcraft struggled and of course, I struggled. I had to fight for my kids. In June 2014, I was commited for depression thoughts. For 55 hours, I sat in an 8x8 sterile room without talking to or seeing anyone. I just kept worrying about my children and thinking about how much I was letting down all the children on Autcraft who were looking forward so much to my birthday, just 4 days away.
When I finally talked to a doctor on that 3rd day and told her of my love for my kids, all the kids on Autcraft, my duties and responsibilities and how much I loved all of this in my life, I was released later that day.
It was all a misunderstanding. I wasn't depressed, I was exhausted. The doctor loves Autcraft and what we've accomplished.
It wasn't long after this that I left Autcraft to focus on my life and my children and getting things together. However, the very day I made my announcement, no less than three different people tried to take over Autcraft to change and mold Autcraft towards their own designs. Behind the scenes, I never left. I worked with the admins to keep everything running as it was, to keep the children safe, to ensure that no one could ruin what the admins were trying their best to hold together without me.
Not long after this, my lawyer, the judge and everyone else advised that I take a temporary deal to pay child support in the same amount as what I should be entitled to in child benefits from the Canadian government, until those benefits come in and then rework that deal.
What none of them told me, which I just found out last week, is that not only did my lawyers not send in the paperwork to reverse that deal but the Canadian government disqualifies you from those child benefits once it is decided that you should pay child support, even if temporary and even if reversed. So not only do I still have to pay but I also don't get any of that money to pay it. A double whammy.
So no legal aid, no child benefits, have to pay child support and on top of this... because I fought so hard, I have my children 50% of the time. Meanwhile my ex's lawyer yells at me "you have to support your children!" to my face and my ex offers to give me money for groceries because she knows I have none... and yet?
I am sharing all this with you because you deserve to know. As I said, this all affects you. Right now, I have just barely enough to cover my rent. That's it. I'm going to have to borrow again. But I can't keep that up.
So again, I'm very sorry. I'm sorry to have to share this with you all. I'm sorry to have to ask for your help. I'm sorry for failing you all. I'm sorry to my own children for not doing better.
I've talked with the other admins, who by the way, are parents just like you. They play on the server, their children play on the server. They are not employees and are not loyal to me, they are loyal to the children that play on the server. And those admins agree with me and back me up on this, in fact, they're the ones who said it to me... without me, there is no Autcraft.
If anything these last 2 years have taught me is that it's unsafe to leave Autcraft in the hands of anyone else. Not that there aren't people as capable or even better suited than me, but that... it is me. This is what I've done and, as this post proves, it is my personal life now and it affects your personal lives. I never intended for that, I really didn't. But it's how it is now.
If I up and close Autcraft tomorrow because I can't do this anymore, that affects you and your children... not just me. This isn't just a failed website that I can close and no one will notice. This is much bigger than me.
This is why I started Patreon a few months ago and why I need it to do well so badly. Without you... I lose my kids. I lose everything. Autcraft will be no more, I will no longer be online at all. I will have failed everyone and in the worst way possible.
I already have failed you because here I am, having not been able to do this on my own.
Also, before you say it, I have exhausted all my options. I truly have. I've been fighting this fight for so long, trying everything I can think of. But despite what you've heard about karma or paying it forward or good things coming to good people... not much has gone right for me through any of this.
People laugh and joke about me being famous for being in the news but I hated it. Being in the news meant 10+ hour days for weeks on end answering white list requests but no new donations came in... no new income. It meant more children finding a safe place to play and for that I was happy. But it meant more work for me with no money coming in.
People keep asking me for more servers, more worlds, more mini-games, more and more and more all the while complaining that I charge a dollar or two for items or permissions. I say nothing because I hate having to do that too. I hate having to ask. I hate having to charge. I hate it.
So, as I promised, I'm finishing by saying I'm sorry. I'm sorry I failed you, I'm sorry I'm asking for your help. I've never asked anyone for anything ever... much less money. I hate it, I despise it and I am sitting here in tears right now because I hate that I'm writing this. I hate it so much.
I've done all I could. I've tried so hard despite so much being against me. But I wasn't strong enough. I couldn't do it.
For Autcraft... for what I've done for so many, I have never asked for anything in return. But now I am. And I hate it. But it's the only way I can keep doing it. It's the only way I can do more. I need your help. I need you.
Without you, right now, Autcraft will close.https://www.patreon.com/autismfather?ty=h
Even if it's just $3. There are currently around 1200 unique players on Autcraft each month. Even just $3 from each person would be more than enough.
I've done so much for so long, I never thought I'd ever have to ask for anything in return.
I'm sorry. I really am. I hate asking.
I hate failing you all even more, especially my children.https://www.patreon.com/autismfather?ty=h