to write a blog post confessing your true feelings until someone gets offended by your personal feelings.
I follow a mom-blog that many of you know based out of Chicago where the mom in question lost a very young child to brain cancer and has another child and is trying to adopt a child. I have followed this blog for a while now because the loss of her child obviously tears at my heart but also seeing how she is channeling the loss into activism and helping others and how she and her husband are pursuing adoption are wonderfully motivating.
So, she had a post up recently talking about facebook and how sometimes it is an occasion for pain. When you see friends or family enjoying something that you have longed for and cannot have. At least not now because for whatever reason, God has decided now is not your time. And you feel awful for feeling longing and maybe some jealousy and you KNOW they are not trying to shove it in your face and you want them to share their good news, but you need a moment to process and work through those valid emotions. Because you want to be happy and better. And you are happy for your friends but that doesn’t mean everything else fades away. And it doesn’t mean you’re a bad person.
I have a friend now who wants nothing more in life than to be married, to be a wife. But she just can’t meet a decent guy. And hasn’t had any kind of boyfriend in about five years. So logging into facebook to see wedding anniversaries, engagements, wedding photos, it can be rough. And she’s honest about it in a very kind way. Just let’s people know she’s going to take a break for a bit til she’s in a better emotional place and come back.
That was the kind of post this blogger put up. She mentioned one situation she came across in her feed that inadvertantly caused pain (well, she mentioned a couple, but there was this one) and the person who came up in her feed shot back in the comments about how the situation she posted about was in fact not all that great, it was actually scary and sad because of some circumstances surrounding it and “not everyone’s life is perfect.”
Now, I know that person is speaking from a place of fear and hurt from her own situation, but I do think her comment was a little out of line because she basically told the blogger, “you’re feelings are invalid because they are not happy to me.” She is right, no one’s life is perfect but just as she gets to mourn that her happy situation is not perfect and comes with risk, shouldn’t this blogger get the chance to mourn that there is something missing in her life? She never accused this person of bragging or forcing the situation on her. In fact, she blamed the medium, facebook, for making these moments more difficult then they might have been otherwise and admitted that she took breaks when things got too heavy.
And the other thing that bothered me about the way the person responded was that she noted she was “alerted to the post because (she) (was) the person who…” which means she never would have known if someone hadn’t been in a scandalous gossipy mood and shared. Kind of an “ooooh, guuuuurl, she writing about you. oh no she di’int!” And that means there’s not just one person who is trying to invalidate this blogger’s feelings.
I don’t know the blogger in real life, so I don’t know if she moans about her problems to everyone who will listen, but her blog is not like this normally. No, normally she talks about her charity work and current events and pop culture and how it relates to her and the child she lost. She is not someone who fishes for sympathy. It’s what makes her kick-butt blogger with a tremendous following.
And even if she was that kind of person, I don’t think it’s fair for people to be offended by anyone’s true feelings if they are stated kindly and respectfully.