On Blogging.

A blog post about blogging. It’s so meta.

I’ve been blogging for almost three years. For the first year to 18 months, no one knew about my blog except Tyler, and the girls in the “community” on the Nest, which is where I started blogging. Shortly after I moved to blogger, I told a few of my close friends at school about it. Now, a lot of people I know in real life know about it. My friends read it, Tyler’s friends read it, and judging from my sitemeter, a crapton of people have linked to it from Facebook and read it now too. Soon a lot of other people will read it too, when I move to Parents. And my full name will be listed there as the author.

Which is fine. I’m a pretty private person in real life, and there’s a lot of really personal stuff on this blog, but I put it on the internet; I put it out there. I don’t post anything I wouldn’t tell anyone if they asked. People are welcome to read about my life, whether I know them in person or not.

Still, it’s weird to think about. This is like my diary, or something. I’ve always used it as a place to write about my struggles and for introspection. Recently, writing about my divorce brought me a lot of peace when few other things did. I’m still not entirely sure how I feel about people I see every day reading about it, but I guess what’s done is done and anyway it’s ended up pretty well for me. My friends say they love my writing and even though I know they’d say that even if it were shit garbage, because they’re awesome, it makes me feel more confident. So I keep writing.

I wrote once that blogging is like therapy for me. It’s still true. I don’t know why, but when I click that “publish post” button and whatever I’ve written gets sent off into the internet, for friends or classmates or ex-husband’s new girlfriends or fellow moms or random internet people to read… I feel better. It’s cathartic. It’s therapeutic. I sure do need that, regardless of any nasty comments I may get in return. (I try to ignore those, although I do always publish them.)

So I’ll keep writing, and I try not to let anything affect what I choose to write about. If I have some crazy shitshow going on, which let’s face it I usually do, I’m going to write about it regardless of whether I have to walk in to school and face 20 people who may or may not have read about it on my blog.

So, fellow bloggers who read this– do you keep your blog secret from people you know in real life? Why or why not?

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  1. by Courtney

    On April 19, 2011 at 6:53 pm

    Mine is public, though I don't go around telling people about it. I don't mention it on Facebook and I don't really foist it upon people. If they stumble across it, fine. But for me blogging is a way to record events, my day, my thoughts, regardless of who reads them and what they say. I do need to define boundaries though, especially when talking about work and the stress it gives me. We live in a small town and I work in local government.

  2. by Anne

    On April 19, 2011 at 7:17 pm

    I don't blog, because I'm the epitome of lazy. But I just wanted to say that I do love your writing. No way is it "shit garbage" although I'm loving that phrase and planning it's debut into my everyday vocabulary as.we.speak. Love you bish.

  3. by Josee

    On April 19, 2011 at 7:34 pm

    My blog is public, but no one that I know in real life other than my husband knows about it. I have a couple people who I don't know that "follow" it, and I think that is so cool! Julia, I am one of those "Nesties" who has been following your blog from the beginning. I love your blog, and I get a kick out of your writing!

  4. by Kristin

    On April 19, 2011 at 8:29 pm

    I don't have one. Wait I do now. I just started one. I have no idea what to write. Your writing is not shitgarbage though. I LAHVE IT. And the word shitgarbage.

  5. by Mrs. V

    On April 20, 2011 at 9:58 am

    Mine is public. At first I thought about having it private, but I found that I really appreciate the support that I received.

  6. by Una giovane signora

    On April 20, 2011 at 11:03 am

    Mine is public. At first, I didn't want people I know reading it, but I eventually decided I didn't care. The sad thing is that it's mostly my ILs who read it, just to keep up on our lives. I've a lot of comments from them about things I've posted. In the end, it's just my life/opinion, and they're welcome to disagree with it, if they choose.

  7. by Libby

    On April 20, 2011 at 2:08 pm

    I recently made mine private. My concerns are for my child when he gets older. After someone recognized us in the grocery store off of pictures I'd posted of him alone, I realized that I had no idea who was reading it. I have this fear that someone will come up to him at school whenever he gets there and use my personal blog to kidnap him somehow – not sure how exactly, but it scares me. So I've made our personal blog private now and only people I know can read it. I feel much more comfortable now!

  8. by Jessica

    On April 21, 2011 at 9:10 am

    This post is so timely for me. I just made my blog private last week. I love writing it in and connecting with others. However, I'm horribly shy and didn't intend for anyone in real life to find it. My husband found my blog and wasn't very nice about it. So now it's private, and I've stopped writing.I really enjoy your blog, and I admire your courage for publishing such personal feelings/events. I feel like I could have written a lot of these posts, myself.

  9. by Georgy

    On April 21, 2011 at 10:04 pm

    My blog started out private, it was mainly to keep family updated about my son's progress. But after joining the preemie board on the bump I made it public with the hope that other preemie mom's would find it helpful. I don't post on the bump baby boards anymore but I still enjoy following some of the mom's/babies that were born around the same time as my son.

  10. by sadie607

    On April 22, 2011 at 9:15 pm

    MIne is public and my MIL and aunt have access to it. I don't talk about it on facebook and I'm very careful to avoid having people I know read it. Some might but I feel better if I can chose the IRL people that have knowledge about my blog.I don't know why exactly except I too use my blog as a journal/therapy and I guess I don't have enough confidence that those close to me will "get it"

  11. by El Osvaldo

    On April 26, 2011 at 7:06 pm

    I have two blogs. One is extremely public (is actually intended for that people who really care to know what's going on in my life). The other one does not exist. Only to people know about it: a friend that helps me with it… and a friend who helped me develop the idea. I don't even sign it. I think you enjoy all this too. I mean, having people who know you get to know your thoughts… and having people who you don't know show that care for what you write. It's funny how both things can satisfy in a similar way.I admire your way to write, your topic selection and the perspective… you never lose your line of thought and you keep it strictly to what it was meant to. Again, I admire it. It's a great blog…

  12. by Jen

    On May 29, 2011 at 9:05 am

    Mine is about as public as you can get, without me handing over my address. Real names. I want to connect with my readers, and I personally have a hard time connecting to a blog when it’s anonymous. I feel like that person really doesn’t want to share their world. I write an Autism blog, and I want to make friends and connect with other parents, and I want to be real to them. I can more see being anonymous if you are blogging about general life, and not one specific subject. If you are truly just making a diary of daily life, and not looking to join a larger community. For me, though, I wouldn’t have it any other way.

  13. by Surviving Five

    On May 29, 2011 at 9:07 am

    I my blog is public and my friends and family all know that I write it, but I use a pen name to protect the safety and privacy of my children since they are the main topics of my posts.

  14. by Karen

    On May 29, 2011 at 9:15 am

    I blog on blogger as well. I use my real first name but I use my child’s nickname and just call my husband “hubby”. I never give details aa to where we live either. There are just too many crazy people out there and I don’t want any of them finding me in real life! I also watermark all my photos.

  15. by mamazilla

    On May 29, 2011 at 9:30 am

    my blog is public and i use my real name as well. i used to blog about my children and post pics of them but i stopped when i noticed that their pics were being favorited on flickr by folks who “liked pics of kids blindfolded in closets” (seriously). and back in 2006, when the sweetney v. violent acres fight broke out explained here i kinda gave up and consciously stopped blogging about them entirely… :( i miss blogging about them and have been trying to refocus the blog to my other interests but it’s been difficult.

    thanks for posting such a thoughtful question!

  16. by Ratna

    On May 29, 2011 at 11:20 am

    I too was anonymous and using it as a journal of sorts since 2004 and going public has had its share of angst for me – I have a separate facebook and twitter account (@getcluedin) to prevent it from mingling with my private facebook and personal life. But, I have gained a lot of new ideas here too- watermarking pics? Never thought of that- great idea! It is a fine balance- this whole social media thing but your post really struck a cord for me- they were the exact same thoughts and feelings I have. Writing is therapy for me and I do not want to lose that ability. I do have to be careful because even though I want to rant, I cannot do so – it is so easy to be sued etc. But another option is to write a DRAFT and then never publish it. That helps me at least continue my journal but I choose who sees it. It’s a great way to continue my therapy and yet still be public. Thanks for this post- at least I am not alone in how I feel.
    My social media post may ring true: http://getcluedincolorado.com/2011/05/social-media-friend-or-foe/

    Thanks for letting me share and vent :-)

  17. by rachel castello-dunn

    On May 29, 2011 at 12:25 pm

    I am open about who I am on my blog. I don’t use my blog writing as therapy. I don’t keep myself separate from my blog. I keep my journal and super private thoughts separate from my blog. I am truthful and honest in what I chose to write. I just choose not to write about some things. I agree with you that I don’t write anything that I wouldn’t say out loud. Thanks for making me think about it!

    Rachel
    http://www.happyhippiehomemaker.blogspot.com