There are many things that can cause a site to be extremely slow loading; what is the url for the site that you are talking about?
What is the load on the server where that site is hosted?
That seems to indicate that they acknowledge receipt of your support requests, and will respond to you when they have a constructive response. It may well be that some further investigation is indicated, and they may need some time to accomplish that.
Yes, it pretty much does mean that (and the TOS makes that pretty clear). That said, my experience with DreamHost over the last 10 years has been that, while there are occasional glitches that need attention, DreamHost's performance levels have been very high for what I pay.
It sounds like you really didn't understand what you were paying for. The DreamHost PS offerings guarantee you exclusive use of "N" amount of CPU and RAM, and the shared plans share those resources.
Absolutely! It sounds to me like that may be what is happening on your server, based on your reported response from DreamHost Tech Support., and it sounds to me as though they are looking into the situation.
It sounds to me as though you are getting what you paid for. You have the ability to submit tech support requests via email, you have had "real person" responses as well as "automated responses" when you are "in the queue". DreamHost has indicated repeatedly that they try to respond to all tech support requests within 24 hours, but the never guaranteed that would be the case. You could have paid for a higher level of support response (callbacks on older higher level plans and as an option on the newer shared hosting plan).
My experiences have varied greatly with other hosts; they all have "warts" of some kind or another. Other shared host have done no better (and most have done much worse) that DreamHost when it comes to basic service level, and none of them have been as flexible and powerful as the DreamHost custom web panel/shell combo. There is a reason I keep all my sites that are suitable for shared hosting on DreamHost, and have for years - they are simply the best deal going, over the long haul, in that type of hosting.
Dedicated servers are more expensive, and require more expertise to manage - I like having the basic infrastructure managed for me the way DreamHost does it. Virtual servers can be great, but they are also more expensive. It's all about your requirements.
Fair enough, but that's not particularly relevant in the situation you have described - your equipment can be fine while still having routing issues (though I doubt that is the case). It very much sounds like you have an overloaded server, and that can be fixed -though it sometimes takes a little time for that to get worked out.
It's also possible, particularly with WordPress" that even with "few users", the site itself is part of the problem. The ready availability of all manner of plugins that do, or attempt to do, all manner of things means that two different WordPRess sites with the same available resources can respond in hugely different ways.
I've seen WordPress, and other, sites grind to a complete halt over things as simple as a slow response from Google analytics, a slow RSS feed parser, or inability to "grab" content form elsewhere on the net in a timely manner - happens all the time. Even major media portals have their sites sometimes rendered "unusable" by their own ad networks crappy performance.
Yep! Folks' experiences will vary greatly, though that statement alone is pretty much meaningless without seeing both of the sites. I wonder if that would still be the case with identical sites that are running on identically loaded servers?
I can tell you are frustrated, and if the delays to get help from support are just more than you can bear, then you may well be happier with a different host. I can only speak from my experience with DreamHost and other hosts, and I'm more than willing to give DreamHost time to "sort it out" when something is amiss in exchange for the "total package" they offer ... YMMV.
All the best to you too!