I was reading a post by Tobold today and I found it interesting. I wanted to put my two cents in regarding healing and the perceptions of what healers are. I felt sorry first for Tobold because all too often these situations arise. I have to be honest and say that I have never personally been assaulted over my healing capabilities, but I watched a run my wife was in fall to pieces and then the group turned on the healer, much the same as Tobold described.
I was thinking back on that instance run where I watched my wife struggle to not walk away. It was Hellfire Ramparts and it was the first time she had healed anything major without any guild members present. It was the truest definition of a PUG (which for the record, I refuse to PUG in general, yes, I am one of those kind). There was a loud mouth tank who thought he knew everyone's class, yet did not even know how to develop and agro rotation. I mean granted, I hated tanking, but even I had to learn to rotate my abilities to manage agro. This tank charged head long into the instance, did not allow the mage to sheep, did not mark so that the rogue and mage knew what targets to sap and sheep respectively, and let us not forget his guildmate the hunter. This guy did nothing through the run. I literally sat there watching my wife get hacked to pieces and the hunter was standing there doing nothing; wait, I must be honest, he was typing to yell at the healer to heal the tank. I told my wife to bail on the group. She refused to. She is stubborn and believes in the innate goodness of people. I have yet to get this out of her to this day.
As the run progresses things went down hill. Finally, it happened. The tank turns and starts to yell at the healer. The tank, who did not hold aggro, had no concept of marking, and had no clue what he should have been doing, knew the spells and abilities of the healer well enough to criticize. Well, one good thing about my wife is she does not take anything from anyone, she laid into the tank and hunter and then left the group. I was happy she left but tried to tell her she should have left earlier. I wanted to impress on her that as a healer, we do have a very tight reign on what goes on. For instance, the hunter who did very little, I would have let that one die, several times over. If you do nothing for the group, you are a waste of mana. As for the dear tank who knows all, I would have politely explained to him how he should hold aggro, but my wife at the time was not as confident in her knowledge of healing, so she took as much as she could from them until she lost her temper.
I think the thing I would like to impress to all non-healers (maybe some healers as well) is that each role is an important role and to show disrespect such as many of these new tanks are displaying, is inappropriate and completely wrong. It is true, that if things go badly, the healer is usually tops on the list for taking the fall; however, have a spotless run and no one says thank you for not letting me die. It does not bother me any more, mostly because I only run with a set group of tanks, but also because I will only run the instances where there is something to benefit me. This is not saying I will not help a guild member out, but for those random please for heals in a run, please do not do that. If you have to resort to random messages you probably have a reason why you are having problems finding a healer.
One other thing I would like to touch while speaking about this topic, and I may revisit the whole thing at a later date and go into more of a way to control a group rather than just heal it, but that must be some other time. Anyway, back on point, for all the classes out there, such as locks (nothing personal, I have a great one too), please do not tell a healer how to heal. Each healer develops their own style of healing and random whispers asking for someone to change their style only annoys the healer and throws them off their game. Please do not tell us how to heal, and we will do our best not to tell you how to tank or dps, and I bet the whole game may become more enjoyable on some levels for all of us.