Yesterday I posted about home parties, actually the post was more about me being sick of home parties, and lamenting the fact that I seem to be invited to them so often. One commenter had this to say, “Thanks for being so open, Danielle. I think most of us feel this way but won't express it.” That really made me think about how open I am on my blog.
I think I’m fairly open and honest. I try very hard not to spout off my personal beliefs regarding touchy subjects like politics and religion, but other than that, I will say what’s on my mind (usually with some minor editing, of course). I don’t know that it’s so much because I’m such an open person, or if it’s because of the anonymity that my blog allows me. Yes, I do use my real name, and that is me in the profile picture. Hardly anonymous I know.
The anonymity comes from the fact that for the most part my friends and family don’t know about my blog. My husband, who is very supportive of my desire to write, knows about it and reads it most days. My best friend knows about it but, to my knowledge, has never read it. (Largely, I think, because she rarely goes online.) That’s it. I haven’t told anyone else I know personally about it.
It’s not that I want to hide my blog from my friends and family; I realize it’s possible that one of them will stumble across it one day, and I’m fine with that. I really am. I’m not ashamed of anything I’ve posted, and I don’t think anyone would feel hurt, embarrassed, or betrayed by anything I’ve posted. If they happen to find it online, they will be able it to judge it for what they read, hopefully before they realize I wrote it. I wanted to see what I could do with a blog on my own, before I subjected myself to the scrutiny and expectations of people who know me.
I tried blogging once before, and it didn’t last or go so well. I told my family and friends all about it. My mom and sister seemed to find it amusing and somewhat pathetic. I think my dad was disappointed that I didn’t go further. One of my friends posted links all over Facebook to try to get her friends to follow me, which I thought was very kind, but probably somewhat annoying to her friends. I also felt like I was a little limited in what I could post. I knew there were things certain people wouldn’t like to read, or that certain things would disappoint people. Then when I abandoned that blog they all knew about it; that I had tried and failed.
So when I started this blog I only told my husband. I didn’t tell my best friend until I was half-way through the A to Z Challenge, and pretty sure I would continue blogging when it was over. Beyond that, I haven’t shared, even though I plan to continue blogging. I feel like this has been the right decision for me. I’ve read posts on other blogs where people have said they’d like to write a book, or would like to say more on a given topic, but don’t for fear of hurting someone’s feelings or changing someone’s opinion of them. I don’t have that worry. I don’t have to question whether a post is going to upset a certain person or alter someone’s perception of me. I have the freedom to write and post what I want.
Another perk has been that I know I haven’t crossed the line between sharing my blog with people I know and pestering them to read it. I know my blog hasn’t turned me into the person whose Facebook status updates make everyone cringe because they really don’t want to hear about it, again.
So what about you; did you tell your family and friends about your blog? Why or why not? Do you personally know many (or any) of your followers? Do you edit your posts based on friends and family who may be reading?