Posted by: Andrea | May 29, 2008

That old blogging fear

So the other day I was talking to my friend Essaytch about our blogs and anonymity.  Just as an aside, I consider it a friendship requirement to distract your friends while they are working as much as possible.  And lucky me, I’m in the perfect circumstances to do that!  With the eight hour time difference, by the time I get home from work all my friends are just getting to work.  Commence many hours of babbling on about random things.  And yes, in case you were wondering, we DO talk about Battlestar Galactica and Stargate: Atlantis.  A lot.

ANYWAY.  Anonymity.  I’ve only had this blog for a few months but I considered starting one for many months before that.  One of the reasons I didn’t, besides the whole ‘why would anyone read what I have to say?’ thing, was the fear of someone I know finding my blog and figuring out who I am.  Let’s face it, other than not using people’s names, I haven’t done much to hide the details of my life.  If someone knows me and stumbles across this blog, it’s pretty obvious it’s me.  Stealthy, I am not.  And yet, I still worry a lot that people from my life who I don’t particularly want to read this stuff about me, might just read it. 

I think everybody who chooses to expose parts (or all) of themselves on the internet has to face up to this at one point or another.  Anonymity or total exposure?  Hide myself or just write?   I hate the idea of having to censor myself because of a fear of someone I know reading it.  And yet there have been moments where the fear of my sister or my ex boyfriend finding this site has made think about not writing on it anymore.  And it’s not like I even write about anything that scandalous!  I do follow the general rule that if you wouldn’t say something to someone’s face, don’t say it on the internet.  Which is definitely a very VERY good rule.  

But the thing is, that fear of someone I know reading this blog has nothing to do with those people.  The fear has more to do with me, that I can’t control what the different people in my life know about me.  That my sister might find out my insecurities, that I’m not always the totally together big sister that I like to pretend I am.  That my crazy ex-boyfriend might find out ANYTHING, such as where I now live or where I like to hang out.  It’s better he not know those things.  Trust me.  

My sister once asked me, why do people keep blogs?  At the time I didn’t really know how to answer, but after having one for awhile, I’m getting closer.  For me, it’s nice to have a place where I can write whatever I want, about whatever I want.  If it’s boring, who cares?  And I can be exactly myself, without having to try to be cool or together or always in control.  A part of me wants to just forget about the anonymity and be totally open about everything, post pictures, tell my family, all that stuff.  I’m not up for THAT just yet, but I’m starting to become a little less nervous about someone I know reading this.  Because this IS me.  And maybe it’s not such a bad thing that I become a little bit more open about who I really am.  I’m not going to post my name on here or anything like that (I have to make it at least a LITTLE bit difficult for people to find me!) but I’m making a strong effort not to be so worried about the anonymity.  If someone finds this, well, that’s life I guess!  Of course I’ll probably just keep telling myself that it won’t happen.  Ignorance is bliss…

Except for that ex-boyfriend.  In that case, I might just have to move.  

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Responses

  1. Wow. I’ve SO been there. I had to move.

    On the one hand I kinda DO wish we could all be a lot more open so we could all post pictures, laugh at each others friends/pets/family/etc. and read comments by each other’s bemused (or horrified) family members…

    But at least for myself, losing anonymity was fatal for my ability to blog. If you go that route, I’ll be interested to see how it works out for you.

  2. I think it sort of goes without saying that if I knew for sure that certain people were reading my blog, it would impact on what I wrote about. I do sort of think about that when I write now, but if I knew for SURE, well, it’s inevitable that a bit of self-censoring would happen. Well, a bit MORE.

    As for the ex, I did move, right after the breakup. It wasn’t necessarily because of the breakup, I was looking for a new flat anyway, but it was a nice coincidence. Of course I realized the genius of that move when he called me to say he couldn’t believe I’d moved without telling him. Which he discovered because he was driving by my flat for no reason and saw the sign in the window. And all of this after berating me for the past three weeks about how horrible I was and how happy he was without me, combined with begging me back. Oh yeah, I REALLY want to tell you where I moved.


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