Blog Post That Piss People Off
As a writer I write about the issues and causes that I am passionate about. I write about what I love and what I hate. Some people hate that about me. I draw from my life and the lives around me that affect my life directly and indirectly. I am very opinionated and vocal in my opinions.
I know people who get mad at me on a regular basis because they read a blog post and think I have no right blogging about something or they just know I'm talking about so-and-so even when I don't use someones name.
A friend said to me, "I think stuff, yea, but I don't write about it publicly, I don't think it's right to write negative things about your friends." and I would agree. Where we differ is I don't believe it's being negative if I write about how a friends situation affects my family, my world, or how it makes me feel or what it makes me think of especially if I'm being general and not exposing my friends situation by using their names and details.
Sure, the friend and others may see themselves in the story even if I work hard to generalize and not give specific-giveaway- details but that doesn't mean everyone who reads the post sees the same thing.
Example; a friend got mad at me for writing this blog post which he was certain the entire thing was about someone he knew. He scolded me for getting my facts wrong, but in truth, the "facts" he thought I had gotten wrong were actually not even pertaining to the person he was so certain that it was about.
I also got scolded for always being negative about the church here on the blog and comparing the church to the mafia. To which I explained, this is my view based on evidence from my 20 years of being involved in Mega Church world. Seeing first hand, being in the thick of it, has made me form that opinion.
"Why can't you write anything positive about the church?"
to which I replied, "Because I don't feel anything positive about it right now."
The bottom line for my friend, from what I gathered by our heated conversation, was that I should not blog anything that's critical about the church or that someone may think is specifically about them. I shouldn't write stuff that will piss people off because it's affecting my relationship with people.
That last part I know all too well. It makes me sad, I know there are people who don't like me, don't invite me to their weddings, because a blog post or two has made them mad. They know how I think and feel about pretty much everything and they don't like it.
It's not that I don't care how my writing effects other people, I do. I've written post and taken them down, I've regretted things I've written. I have over 500 post saved to draft because I just don't feel they should be put out there. But for the most part, I don't regret writing honestly here on my blog. There is a fine line between honestly writing about my life and respecting the privacy of people in my life. It's impossible to write about a life without including others in that story.
The blog post that caused my friend to get so mad at me was all about my fears of one day Dean trading me in for another woman. It was prompted by one specific situation which made me ponder the MANY different couples I have known who dealt with infidelity. I felt I needed to blog about this fear, it helps me to process. I also believe it helps others like me who may be going through the same fears and concerns.
Preachers tell stories, "I knew a guy who..." speakers and teachers tell stories, "a friend and his wife got divorced..." to illustrate their sermons. In the bible, Paul wrote about disagreements he had with Peter. That's what writers do, we tell our stories, which often time includes the influence and stories of others. News magazines and TV programs have always told stories, done expose', engaged in investigative journalism, all with the goal of revealing truth. But for some reason blogger's get a lot of flack for doing the same, for sounding trumpets, for taking on those in positions of power. How dare a middle aged redneck mom call out an injustice? Pontificate about infidelity, gay marriage, the church, politics? She didn't earn a journalism degree, she's not paid to express her views. How dare she write freely? Male blogger's have it easier but even they are taken to task for writing about certain subjects, organizations, people.
I can only imagine how often reporters gets asked, "Did you have to write that?" because they've offended or hurt someone with something they wrote. I'm like a reporter I guess. I try to get the facts right, not hurt innocent people with what I write and at the same time take on the powers that be, fight for the under-dog, ask questions others don't want to ask and say "wait a minute, what about this?" And I have to tell my story. Most people who know me now will say something like, "Don't put that on your blog!" when I'm with them or talking to them and they don't want me to blog about it. They know I consider everything in life material to be written about.
I appreciate that my friend told me how he felt. I'd rather someone honestly be pissed off at me than someone who would never tell me how they really felt. We still disagree about what I should and shouldn't write, he's still mad and will probably not like that I wrote this post about him.
I wish I could make everyone like me and make everyone happy and still be honest and true to what I'm supposed to do in this life as a writer but I can't. I'm not the blogger who can only write post that don't piss people off.