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If you know me in real life, please f@#k off.

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When I first started this blog, all the way back in October last year (actually five months ago today, which is pretty cool) I didn’t really know what I was getting in to. I had been lurking on other people’s blogs for a while. I had  even commented on a couple. I knew I was quite addicted to reading blogs but I had no idea that the act of blogging would become such an important release for me.

I remember when I decided (after a couple of days) to start deliberately, actively trying to get people to come and comment on my blog. I delurked on a bunch of blogs and I started using my URL when I commented. I took a few days but pretty soon I had my first commenter. Pretty soon I had a few people who were willing to come and comment on the drivel I write here.

In the last five months I’ve made some really fabulous bloggy friends. It has brought so much to my life to find that there are people out there that are just like me in so many ways. I love and need my friends in real life but on the internet so much is shared, so much is given generously, it is simple, few demands are made. I write stuff down (and, let’s face it, with me it is just any old crap I have floating about in the brain pan) and people come and read it and say stuff to me about it. I do the same for them. We share our stories. We find our common threads. There are different threads that tie me to each of my blogging friends. Each thread is some facet of my personality that is nurtured by the presence of that person in my feedreader. What could be more wonderful.

I mentioned that I had an accident recently when I took a trip into the world of alcohol fueled idiocy. Fine, a couple of friends who know me well already can know about my blog. I was a touch upset with myself but I soon realised that I didn’t really mind. These are not people who will judge me, no matter what I write, I could pretty much say anything to them they’ve pretty much seen me at my worst already. No big deal.

So, last week my friend S mentioned that she had opened up a Twitter account. I told her I was on there and we agreed that we would friend each other. Over the last few days I started having paranoid thoughts.

“What is she followed other people who know me in real life?”

“What if people find my blog? ”

“Oh shit. I am going to have to unfollow her and her husband and block them so they can’t follow me!”

I knew I was going to do this but I was putting it off. Knowing that my friend would probably roll her eyes and tease me a little bit for worrying about my anonymity. I knew she wouldn’t really care at all but I was embarrassed.

Then, tonight, I open the laptop and I have an email “suchandsuch is following you on twitter”. Oh crap.

I paniced and blocked my friend, her husband and this other person (also my friend but not someone I see as much).

I sent S an email apologising and having a little meltdown.

I had a big meltdown.

I had a big cry to Beefcake. I’m not sure he entirely understands but this blog is just mine. Just for me and my thoughts. You know, in Harry Potter, how Dumbledore had a pensieve. He would pull out the strands of memory, his thoughts, and place them in the pensieve for safekeeping. That’s kind of what my blog is to me. I need this room to lay out all the brain clutter. To connect with other people. It is mine, it is safe.  Having everyone know about it feels like my mind being invaded. I know that this is a public space but there is a difference between public to a bunch of people you will never meet, most of whom are on the other side of the world, and people who you might see at a family function.

So, tonight I pulled my blog down for a little while. I had decided to start a new blog, in anonymity, somewhere else.

I had another sob to Beefcake.

I put it back up again.

I don’t know, maybe I will need to get myself a new space to write in but for now I’m just going to go with this:

People, if I know you in real life please go away. I can’t stop you, well actually I can but I don’t want to. I keep this blog private. I need it. Please fuck off. xx

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9 responses

  1. first, thanks for stopping by my blog : ) second—i TOTALLY get what you’re saying, and love the comparison of blogs to pensives, that’s a great one. i struggle w/ the anon thing too. i have to twitter at work and i set up a facebook account and my goal is to keep all of that separate. some of my blog readers are my in-person friends and face book friends but they’re the friends who don’t judge, etc. like you said. i like the anonymity of my blog because i too use it to dump all the stuff from my brain.

  2. I certainly wish certain people wouldn’t read my blog. It all gets very tricky and messy and this whole online social media thing will probably implode on us all – but for now i just keep on blogging and to hell with the consequences.

    Homeofficemum’s last blog post… Photographic evidence of the early days

  3. I get where you’re coming from. I stopped writing on my blog for months after my husband found out about it. I think (hope!) that he’s forgotten about it and stopped reading it. It’s not that I’m writing about him, or that it’s that private, but I just don’t want people I know there. It’s just…mine. I don’t have a room of my own in real life, and blog is sort of that.

    (And make sure you e-mail me and let me know if you do move your space!!! xo)

    badness jones’s last blog post… It’s a bird….it’s a plane…

  4. Yup. With you there. I only have a few real life friends who read this and they are fabulous and totally get it, but I do worry about certain ‘other’ people reading it because then I feel I would have to compromise what I say, and that’s not the point is it?
    x

  5. It’s such a fine line between needing privacy and using blog as therapy. I understand totally how you’re feeling. I gave my blog to my parents when my kids and I were on holiday, and occasionally they make reference to it (so I know that they’re still reading).

    I HAVE adjusted some things that I write about because of that, but not to the detriment of my truth. I actually think that it allows them to have an idea of my emotional depth that I would not be able to explain to them otherwise.

    A few friends read…. but I find that if people aren’t “bloggers” by nature, they don’t hang around for long.

    Keep your blog, dear Ali. Do it for YOU. Don’t worry about them. Perhaps it will allow your friendships to grow richer.

    xoxo

    Fe’s last blog post… I don’t want to jinx anything…. but…..

  6. Creative Kerfuffle – Thanks for stopping by. I find the whole thing con fusing to juggle but I will have to try and keep these things separate.
    HOM – Good attitude, I wish I could be as tough but I am mortified at the thought of some people knowing the stuff that I write here.
    Badness – thanks for your support, my love. That would be the hardest thing, how would I let everyone know where to find me, I’d have to go through and email everyone who comments and then I’d lose any lurkers, oh well!
    Katyboo – exactly, if I can’t write mind-numbing drivel with carefree abandon then i may as not do it at all.
    Fe – Thankyou darlin, I feel a lot better today. You’re right of course but I am a big wuss and easily embarassed

  7. You wrote what I was thinking, only in a much more coherant fashion. I took a day off blogging entirely after finding out that an aquaintance following the same blog and online projects. Like you, I blog to clear some space in my head. As far as I am aware few IRL friends know about it and I make sure that if I comment on their blogs I use a different login. I don’t want my worlds colliding, yet I am sure they will at some stage. Please stay in blogland!

    del’s last blog post… Worlds Collide

  8. This is exactly what happened to me when I started my first blog years ago. My family and friends all found me and thus began the Negative Comments and Judgment. It was a popular blog and had a lot of followers and readers, but I ended up shutting it down. I now blog anonymously (for the most part). I don’t use real names on my blog and I try to keep it on the “Down-Low.” I decided, when I started this new blog, that I never wanted to ban another IP (which you can do from your CPanel), but I didn’t want to edit what I was saying either. I’ve found my Happy Place. It’s taken me two blogs, six years, and countless mistakes, but I now know what I need my space to be. I hope you find that too. Also? I’m really glad I’ve started to know you– you are a kind, gentle, and caring soul and someone I would really like to get to know better. We have so very much in common and just knowing you makes me feel less alone. Another reason why I love this blogging medium.

    Magic Mom’s last blog post… What’s Your Secret? Now With More Poop!

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