just don't say it: you have a Blog?

I just love it when other bloggers have a great idea for this series, a topic I haven’t covered yet, or a new angle on this series. Such was the case when Joan e-mailed me with this post. I hope you enjoy it, and don’t forget to check out her blog, Everything is Yours.

“Let me get this straight…you write these ‘blog post’ things, and then complete strangers read them and sometimes write back to you!? Joan, you have no idea how dangerous that is! The internet is full of crazy people! You are wasting so much time sitting in front of that darn computer of yours, and the people who read this ‘blog’ of yours need to find better hobbies too. You really need to stop this now…”

I have to admit that these were not the words I was expecting to hear after telling two of my family members that I had started a blog. A faith-based blog.

Sure, I was expecting to hear some skepticism considering the fact that these family members had never read a blog nor even heard of a blog before, but I was not prepared to hear that my blog was a waste of time and that I needed to stop writing immediately. Their words stung. A lot.

Despite the fact that their words were hurtful, they were words I wanted to share for a few reasons:

  • “Complete strangers read them and sometimes write back to you?!” – This might be one of my favorite aspects of blogging! I have gotten to ‘know’ quite a few amazing Catholic women simply by reading and posting comments to one another. Can I see how this would seem completely ridiculous to someone who doesn’t blog, though? Absolutely, but I feel like it’s one of those you can’t knock it until you try it type of things!
  • “Joan, you have no idea how dangerous that is!” – While I agree with my family members that blogging can be dangerous, walking outside can be a dangerous thing too! I think this is an area where each blogger needs to use his or her best judgment and to avoid posting extremely personal information such as a cell phone number or home or work addresses.
  • “The internet is full of crazy people!” – This is another comment that I can agree with, but I can also say that the internet is full of some amazing people! If this is something you as a blogger are concerned about, you could always add security features to comment boxes which require the commenter to verify that they are not a spammer.
  • “You are wasting so much time sitting in front of that darn computer of yours.” – I might be speaking for myself when I say this, but I know that there has been at least one time where I could have or should have been doing something else besides blogging. As with any hobby, it’s important to set time limits to ensure that the hobbies don’t monopolize one’s time.
  • “You really need to stop this now.” – I read an interesting article the other day which said that each blogger needs to be willing to walk away from his or her blog at any moment. If you ever feel like blogging is becoming too much of a focus in your life, even if your ultimate goal with your blog is to evangelize, take a break. Seriously, take a break. I know when I was detached from the blogosphere for a few days over Christmas vacation, it felt weird, but it gave me a chance to actually miss writing and to remind myself why I started a blog in the first place.

I’m curious to hear: Have you ever received negative comments about your blog from family and friends? And if so, how did you handle the situation?

JNagelJoan is a Registered Dietitian/grad student who blogs at www.everything-is-yours.com. She enjoys reading, running, listening to music, watching The Bachelor, and learning about the Catholic faith! She also loves traveling and has a passport that she is hoping to use after she graduates in May!

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