Don’t Stop

by Elizabeth on December 4, 2011 · 10 comments

in blogging, could be controversial, struggles

My mother often says to me “don’t post about that! You don’t know who could find it!”  And in a way she’s right.  When you are the only person in the whole wide world with your name (I’m dead serious – no exaggeration), sometimes it is incredibly important to pay attention to what you write.  It becomes a matter of safety.  It’s one of the reasons I do my very best to keep my last name separate from this blog.  As much as I love y’all, I don’t want some stranger showing up at my door.

But there is a second meaning to this oft repeated message from my family and from others: don’t over share.  No one needs to know the details of your personal life.

I think slightly differently, however.  Not that I feel it’s necessary to document my every move in this space (that’s what Twitter is for.  Kidding.  Sort of. 😉 ), but I do enjoy sharing the every day details, however mundane, of my life with you.  It’s why I post my menu plan every week and why I post a lot of pictures of Caty Cat.  Because that’s mostly my life – food and my cat. 🙂

But really, those aren’t the posts that concern family members and, occasionally, others.  It’s the posts about my ongoing battle with depression, my struggles to find a reason to get out of bed in the mornings, my fears, my anxieties, generally the things that go on in my head that don’t go on in “normal” people’s heads.  The things that make me different.  The things that make me ME.

I write because I need to.  I don’t do it for the money or for the recognition (because there is not much there).  I do it because it is my therapy.  Putting words on a page, sharing my life, helps me in ways I cannot explain.  My friends in the blogging world are part of the reason I get out of bed and put my fingers to the keyboard.  Knowing that someone out there is reading and will shoot me an email if I seem off or haven’t posted in while gives me strength when I need it and lifts me up.

I know there are people out there who think I’m wrong; that private struggles should remain just that.  I know there are people out there who want me to only write about the happy, bright things.  I know there are those who will criticize me for sharing so much personal information.

Well let me tell you something.  You don’t have to read this blog.  No one is holding a gun to your head.  No one is forcing you to keep reading.

As for me, I HAVE to keep blogging.  I need it so much more than you know.  So no matter what happens, no matter who says what, I will not stop.  You cannot turn me off.

For all of you out there who feel pressured to stop writing or judged on what you write, don’t stop.  Your blog, your journal, your online space is yours.  It is your space to say what you want to say and how you want to say it.  Haters are going to hate, people are going to criticize no matter what.  But that should never make you stop doing what you want to do.

I’m not going to stop nor am I going to change what I feel like I have to do.  I hope you’re with me.

{ 9 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Amy @ Feathered Friendsy December 4, 2011 at 12:06 pm

I laugh because my mom used to say the same thing. She was sure that me sharing meal plans and opinions was going to cause some weirdo from across the world to hunt me down and kidnap me. I doubt a recipe for sugar cookies and writing about being politically liberal in a non-aggressive form is really going to do that.

As someone with a real-life stalker, I can tell you that 96% of documented stalking cases are ones in which the stalker already knew the stalkee in real life. I still blog because I don’t care if he knows what the rest of the world knows about me – it isn’t earth shattering. I’d never disclose my exact location, important numbers or dates, etc. but like you, blogging is a form of very effective therapy for me.

I’m glad you’re going to continue- I love your blog and I’m really happy to have met you through this platform 🙂


2 Katie December 4, 2011 at 1:37 pm

Fellow librarian here! Just wanted to chime in that I’m also glad that you’re committed to continuing your blog– I very much enjoy reading it!

And btw, you should follow me on twitter (@katielilah) because I always want to reply to your tweets about TVD but since my tweets are locked you wouldn’t be able to see them 🙂


3 amber December 4, 2011 at 7:27 pm

Props to you and everything you feel/think/write/tweet. Blog on my friend!


4 Molly December 4, 2011 at 8:02 pm

The more of us who share that we, “normal people”, suffer from a mental illness, the less stigmatized it becomes and the easier it is for others to accept.
So I, for one, applaud you for sharing those struggles. It helps to know that we are not alone.


5 Megg December 4, 2011 at 8:26 pm

That’s one of the biggest reasons I blog, Molly! I want to help remove the stigma, and hope that being honest and open that will help. I always appreciate it when a blogger is open about these things.


6 Sharly December 5, 2011 at 8:29 am

Hi there 🙂 I’ve been reading your blog for a few months and have enjoyed it quite a bit.

My blog grew from a very painful life event. First I started knitting, which was great therapy, then I started blogging about knitting. 🙂 Through the years, my interests changed, but I continued to write about things that were important to me. Although my blog is whimsical and light and told from the point of view of my (twelve) pets, it has been cathartic and a great outlet. Now that I am feeling better about life in general, I’m not as regular at updating as I was. However, I like the healthy relationship I have with my blogging life. I now don’t “have” to update like I once did. My blog and I are more like old friends who get together to catch up when there is something worth sharing.

I completely understand your need to blog, and hope the therapy you get from it gives you comfort, and you will continue to share yourself with the blogosphere.

Take Care!


7 Elspeth @ paper armour December 5, 2011 at 9:06 am

I totally agree. If someone doesn’t like what you write, they don’t have to read it. Reminding myself that gives me a healthy amount of freedom in choosing what to write about. I’m so glad that blogging can be therapeutic for you. 🙂


8 Cate December 5, 2011 at 3:24 pm

I agree wholeheartedly! When I first started blogging on a “real” venue (as in, not xanga or livejournal), I refrained from posting anything that was too personal. But my blog didn’t feel like “me” when I was leaving out things that were hugely integral to my life and self. I’m sure some of my family members who don’t read my blog would be horrified by some of the things I disclose about myself, but I figure, it’s my life. And I can be as open or closed about it as I want.


9 Rachael December 6, 2011 at 5:45 pm

Thanks for sharing this! I continue to waver about how much I want to share and how to manage the online identity issue. It’s always nice to see someone just going for it.


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