Thursday, 10 January 2013

Lesson Learned

I've got a few partly written posts in draft. 

One is a straight down the line post about my Christmas - another is about those damned things that happened over the Christmas period.  As we drift further away from the festive season I feel I'm losing momentum to finish them.  After all, who wants to read about Christmas in February??

I think that both of them are worthy of being published so I really should get my act together and I've got some great photos to share with you all but, before I do, I've been feeling I should revisit a post I wrote just after Christmas which may have been a little ambiguous even (dare I say it AGAIN) a little drama queenish.

I was debating where I was going with my blog or even if I should continue with it.  It was (as it often is with me) a bit of a knee jerk reaction to something that had happened.

I alluded to but didn't explain what had brought me to the way of thinking.

Well, this is what happened:

I wrote a post which included a photo of SD's beach buggy.  I posted the same photo on Facebook.

SD has always known I write a blog, he knows that he appears in it on occasion.  He doesn't want to read it, he has never asked what his pseudonym is and all he has ever asked is that I respect his privacy in that I don't post anything that could directly link back to him.

I failed in that promise...

The photo of the buggy was picked up by google images which linked it directly back to my blog.

A friend of his came across the image and therefore my blog.

Now, I know many people are quite open about their blogs and include links to posts on FB ect. 

I don't.  I never have.  For me my blog is something separate to my every day life.  Sure I have some friends who know about it and read it but very few.  Most of the people I know in every day life have no idea I write it and that's the way I like it.

Anyway, SD came in for a little gentle teasing.  I need to stress that this was a good friend of his, someone I consider a friend too.  There was no malice intended, no intention to upset anyone and no one at fault other than myself for being thoughtless.

But SD was upset, he is a very private person and he felt exposed.  He felt I'd let him down and he was right.  Unintentionally I had!

Anyone who's been reading my blog for any time knows that there are some quite sensitive posts on here, things I don't want to necessarily share with people I may see on a daily basis (other than close friends of my own).  It's kind of ironic that I'll happily publish quite intimate stuff about myself on occasion for relative strangers to read but I don't want people I know to see it.

So that's why I put the whole thing back into draft.  That's why I'm still a little cagey about what I write.  That's why I'm struggling to finish posts and hit the publish button.  My little bubble has been breached and who's to say it wont be again?

Starting another blog and keeping it anonymous is one option but, as I've found, it's not always foolproof.

Fronting it out and carry on as normal is another, but again, as I've found, it's not that easy.

What I don't want, what I've never wanted is for my blog to hurt anyone in anyway.

I wonder if I'm making too big a deal over it.  SD and I have talked about it.  He knows how sorry I am.  I know his friend picked up on the fact that it caused a little friction which wasn't his intention.  Possibly he will never bother to look up my blog again, after all, it was a chance in a million that he found it.

So, here's what I've decided.

I will carry on writing here but I will be a little more mindful of what I write.  I'll still tell my stories and post my photos but I'll be more careful and more respectful of the power of the Internet.

I will go back and take some posts out of draft at some point but some will stay hidden because they have served their purpose and that's where they belong.

Maybe in some ways is wasn't a bad lesson for me to learn.


joeh said...

I think I would like SD.

I don't see anything on this blog he should be offended by.

Carmen said...

I am glad you decided to keep writing. I too have had the experience of being 'found'... years ago it caused a shit storm of drama and I too learned my lesson. Somewhat lol. I still post things I probably shouldn't but I am more mindful of how I portray people in my life that COULD potentially hear about it from others who do read my blog.

It's all in the delivery...

Sarah said...

I think you'd like him too Joe - he's a very easy person to like.

Luckily SD isn't the dramatic sort Carmen but I felt like I'd disapointed him and that was almost worse than him being angry.

I think it doesn't do any harm to be a little mindful, it's so easy to babble on without thinking (well, for me it is anyway ;).

Yep, delivery is key ...

Feisty Cat said...

Ah, Sarah, you have stumbled into the nonfiction writer's dilemma; it isn't just a blogging thing. As a nonfiction writer (sometimes I want to switch to good, old fiction, with safe "characters"). We are writing about real people! Real events! The soul searching comes with the territory and makes it ten times harder ... as if writing isn't hard enough. In the end, you have to decide where your boundaries lie ...

but don't stop writing ... and do publish that Christmas post, please!

Christmas in February sounds wonderful.

Kelloggs Ville said...

Hmmm, understand everything you've said entirely and totally relate.

You can't stay anonymous not matter how hard you try. If you wouldn't write it on a card in the supermarket, don't put it on a blog. Luckily for me, I have no shame and I'll write just about anything on that card ;)

It shouldn't be a stress for you, just leave the old posts in draft. Whatever, you aren't on a marketing gravy train, it's not like they neeeed to be there. Just let them lie.

I think cow shit, tow ropes, kittens, naked in front of neighbours, svhool dilemas...they all make fo funny reading and are safe BUT if you need to write out your feelings then either pop out for a note pad or start up a private blog, you can allow people to read it if they request to that way you can control which non-stranglers see your gory details. I know a number of people that write like that and I read them because they need to feed to need to write it out and it's an interaction they require.

But whatever SD's friend read or saw, men really don't bother that much, he won't bother again probably and is unlikely to be too strung up on it. Today's news is tomorrow's cat litter and all that.

Sarah said...

I'll finish it today FC just for you - it was pretty wonderful :)

Lol K - I'm pretty shameless too when it comes to me - guess I just have to consider other people.

Dont worry, plenty more cow shit etc coming from me no doubt and I expect you're right, can't see any of SD's friends having any particular interest in anything I write really. I expect he's forgotten about it already :)

Salamander said...

Babe!! Puh-lease don't stop writing!! And for Buddha's sake, don't go all anonymous on us. How the hell would I find you again?? Heavens to Betsy. Just finish the damned Christmas stories I have something decent to read. M'kay?? Love ya guts xxxxxxxxx

Sarah said...

Love you toooo Sal! Did a bit of soul searching and decided to carry on regardless (can't get rid of me that easily ;) xxxxx

Rowen said...

I think a lot of people who write blogs keep it from a lot of the people they see on a regular basis for a number of reasons. It's sometimes nice to be able to vent about things without everyone you know knowing about it, and just to share, but these things could definitely cause tension with people seen regularly unless they're very close to you. Some people who blog do it just to empty their heads without the intention that anyone will ever see it. But there's something comforting about it reaching a relative stranger I think, who can get something out of it, but it should be nigh on impossible for a stranger to exact any judgement cos afterall they don't know you. And someone you know is likely to bring anything you share with all it's connotations into all communication you have...
My comment may be a bit long-winded :/

Sarah said...

That's exactly it Rowen - being able to share things without having things clouded by all the things other may know about me - sharing stuff without the fear that it might have a knock on affect on my day to day life.

It's a bit like having a seperate reality and I like to be the one to chose if and when they should cross over.