The Weirdness of Having a Public Blog

It’s a kind of weird having such a public blog. Partly because the quality of writing (especially since starting The Daily Post’s Post A Day challenge) is not always up to my personal standards — it’s a little embarrassing for so many people to see posts that I’ve just thrown together after almost running out of time. Mostly, though, it’s odd because a lot of what I write about is rather personal. Oh, I suppose my blog isn’t truly public in the sense that it doesn’t show up in a Google search of my name (yet — I check on a regular basis), but it’s visible to everyone, and I link to it on Facebook, so most of the people in my life could easily read it.

A number of the trans/queer/gender-related blogs I follow are pretty specific about their transitions, their thoughts, their personal lives. And yet, my parents subscribe to my blog via email. Other relatives know about my blog. Former high school teachers can see the links to my blog posts. It makes it a little awkward. As much as I do feel like it’s really important to have blogs that are pretty explicit about people’s transitions (socially, physically, etc), I feel some reservations about doing so myself.

My blog is not anonymous. Most of the people who read my posts are people who know me. It definitely causes me to self-censor a bit. It’s easier to be honest about how I feel (particularly regarding my body, transition, etc.) when I’m speaking anonymously to the internet at large. It’s different when it’s to my friends, family, and acquaintances.

It’s sometimes uncomfortable to have everyone able to read this blog. I’ve been part of so many groups, communities, and circles of friends in my life, and each often sees a different facet of who I am.

For example, I started watching CSI in high school — I distinctly remember my first episode: “Blood Drops,” at my friend’s grad party (well, kind of friend, more my friend’s older sister). We all gathered together in her room, and it was so creepy. And now that’d never happen, CSI being a show that totally glorifies the police, validates the criminal legal system, and normalizes the prison industrial complex. While it was a bonding experience at the time, it’s embarrassing to now admit that I watched the show.

There are definitely very real things from my past about which I don’t particularly want people from my present to know. There is information about my life now that I’d rather not have everyone know, as much as they’re real parts of my life, and it’d make for a good blog post. I also feel a little off balance at times because I’m often the only connection between my posts. I’ll bounce back and forth between being trans and Doctor Who, fine dining and the prison industrial complex. I feel at times as though my blog should be more politically minded (political in the sense of dealing with injustice and systems of oppression, not in terms of politicians) . . . and then I’ll post about a new restaurant I went to, and the mental juxtaposition can make me uncomfortable.

It all makes for interesting dynamics that I’m still working through, and it has caused me to become hyper-aware of everything that I post. Will it change how people think of me? Did I miss the political implications of whatever I’m posting about? Perhaps above all, am I writing this from a position of privilege of which I’m not aware? I worry constantly that I’m backsliding politically, that I’m being oblivious and buying into problematic societal messages, that I’m being blinded by my own privilege.

I’m glad I have this blog, and I’m glad that I’m continuing with the challenge to post everyday. It forces me to reflect on my life and my opinions, and it encourages me to be honest. I just worry about the consequences of my writing.

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2 responses to “The Weirdness of Having a Public Blog

  1. What’s the point in writing if you’re going to censor yourself? I don’t know you yet I found your blog.

  2. Hey there, just wanted to thank you for this reflection, and say that I share a lot of your questions about “performing” different selves depending on the audience. What kind of total statement does a collection of personal / political blog entries make about oneself?! 🙂 The more I think about my blogging as imperfect offerings, though, the easier it is to let go of expectations of what it should or shouldn’t be, and instead try to respond to the ripples that the writing sends out, into my own actions and into the thoughts and actions of people who read it. Do you feel like there’s generosity in what you do? I’m curious.

    Much internet love and gratitude!

    katie loncke

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