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To reveal or not to reveal

Most of the people who know I write a blog fall into very specific categories:

  • Those who knew me before I blogged, so it doesn’t surprise them that I lay out all of my life for public consumption
  • Those who met me as I was starting to blog, so it seems like I’ve always done it
  • Those I’ve met because I blog, so nothing I do seems in the least bit odd to them

And all those people I’m about to meet in GA?  They don’t fall into ANY of those categories.

Will they think I’m weird?

Well, truthfully, they probably will anyway within about a week of having met me so there’s really no chance of hiding that.

Will people be freaked out that I’ll write about them?

I don’t write about my kid’s schoolmates or our neighbors now, so why would I start now?  Although. There is always the chance that there will be infinite amounts of blog fodder and I will literally have to cut off my own fingertips to keep from writing super snarky posts about minvans with gun racks.

The restraint!

The pain.

It’s too much.

How MUCH will I hate having to explain for the umpteenth time that YES, I consider myself a real writer even though I don’t have a book or a column…and NO, it’s not just a hobby…and YES, I do actually make money doing it….and NO, I don’t know Dooce.

Writing a blog is sort of ego-centric to begin with…it takes some serious balls to sit down and write about yourself and assume that ANYONE else is going to be remotely interested.  Frankly, it shocks the ever-living crap that you all read this and keep me going.

Telling other people that you write about yourself is humbling, because you’re more or less saying “HAI, here’s my soul on a platter, would you care to take a stab at it with that really rusty spoon over there?”

There’s also something a little disheartening about sharing something you feel passionate about and having it shrugged off as totally inconsequential…although I’m completely guilty of it on my end.  I will admit to NOT getting the scrapbooking thing, I just don’t, it’s really expensive and WHERE do you store all those books?


So, opinions, people!

Do I go in blog-blazing and getting it out there right off the bat or do I just sit quiet about it and hopefully let it come out in an natural way that won’t have all the new middle school moms starring at me as if I said I sacrifice puppies in my spare time?


And I have a post up over at Deep South Moms Blog about the best part of a really crappy field trip.

44 Comments on “To reveal or not to reveal”

  1. #1 momranscreaming
    on May 13th, 2009 at 12:51 pm

    I say keep quiet until you get to know some people and then let it come out naturally. I get freaked out when people who live near me read my blog (unless they know me really well). I think reading a blog before getting to know someone will cultivate some preconceived notions. Are any of us exactly our real life self on our blog? Plus, you don’t want to scare them away. Or, the ones you do want to scare away, you tell immediately and tell them you reveal everything about everyone 😉

  2. #2 Maternal Mirth
    on May 13th, 2009 at 12:52 pm

    You put everything I have thought for years into a very eloquent post.


    But, again, make sure you bring the “I don’t know Dooce” thing right up front.

    Maternal Mirths last blog post..‘Hygiene’ Has Become a Dirty Word.

  3. #3 kp
    on May 13th, 2009 at 12:55 pm

    You should definitely reveal. I won’t be able to get my fix with you up there if you don’t!

  4. #4 Amanda
    on May 13th, 2009 at 12:57 pm

    My thought – and I am a mom in GA – is that you will find very few people who blog or follow more than one or two blogs. That said, they will become ENDLESS topics for what considerably amusing entries.

    In fact, I am DYING for you to run into the ‘I drive a suburban, go to bunko, and wear a 3 carat diamond ring” ladies. I’ve been on pins and needles ever since you announced you were moving here!

    Dooce – you COULD run into someone who knows who she is/what the word means – you COULD but I’m not sure you will.

    You’ll definitely gain a new following if you so desire. The blog culture here (at least where I live – northern Atlanta) is very new and I have to setup their readers and help them find blogs.

    After I explain what a reader is.

  5. #5 Karen MEG
    on May 13th, 2009 at 1:09 pm

    Yes, the things that we bloggers do to ourselves…so much of what you wrote here I can so totally relate to. I have a couple of IRL friends who know I blog, one who reads it religiously…it was funny, she intro’d me to one of her friends as “my friend who writes a blog” and the other one reacted like I was from another planet … “a what??”….

    And what do you mean, you don’t know Dooce 😉 LOL!

    I don’t get the scrapbooking thing either.

    Just have fun, you’ll know when/who to share it with.

  6. #6 Jenny 867-5309
    on May 13th, 2009 at 1:13 pm

    Be YOU, you’ll go nuts anyway if you try to hold back!

    I’ve been going crazy lately because there a LOT of people here in the Ozarks that just “don’t get it” and I’m an outcast. I decided yesterday – They can bite my Outcast!

    Jenny 867-5309s last blog post..A REAL mother’s day gift

  7. #7 Melisa
    on May 13th, 2009 at 1:22 pm

    I’m with momranscreaming: if it comes up, talk about it. If not, I wouldn’t wear a sandwich board around town to advertise yourself or anything.

    And you ARE a writer. A blog is sort of a column, isn’t it?

    Melisas last blog post..What Ever Happened To That (Dancing) Guy?

  8. #8 Bridget
    on May 13th, 2009 at 1:27 pm

    I moved back home to a small town in GA last year and I’m at that weird point where IRL friends know I blog, but now other people around town are catching on. So now the decision is how much to censor what I say.

    If you go in with the blog a-blarin’, it’ll be a lot less awkward than some of the recent conversations I’ve had-like with the 70 year old woman at church who came up to me and told me she was worried about my salvation after reading some old posts on my blog. Bitch.

    I didn’t say that to her, but maybe I should have since honesty is the best policy.

    Bridgets last blog post..Wordless Wednesday: So You Think You Can Dance Edition

  9. #9 MonsteRawr
    on May 13th, 2009 at 1:40 pm

    I tend to let it come out quietly and naturally. But then, I also rarely write about people I know personally, and if I do, I change their names. Of course, I also don’t have some of the issues that you will, (like having a readership of more than 3,) so I say do whatever makes you feel comfortable. And if it makes you feel better, I agree with Amanda; I’ve told about a million people here that I have a blog and no one seems to even know what a blog is. Write away!

  10. #10 PAPA
    on May 13th, 2009 at 1:46 pm

    Blog Blaze it, Baby! Come in strong!

    PAPAs last blog post..White River Rapids

  11. #11 Amo
    on May 13th, 2009 at 3:39 pm

    I just went through this exact same thing. (Stick with me, babe, I’ll walk you through it.)

    I have told a few people who ask WHAT IN THE HELL DO YOU DO WITH BOTH KIDS AT HOME ALL DAY?! Which is generally in response to me saying I haven’t found a part time preschool I like yet… My snarky answer is that I hide behind my computer and write about them for the sole purpose of embarrassing them later in life.

    I only have one person who follows me.

    However, I was approached by one woman from my hood that I had only met once who actually quoted me at the grocery store. That? Was super weird. She was laughing her ass off at something I had written and it was one of those moments where she was the only one who got the joke even though it was MY joke and we were the ONLY TWO PEOPLE STANDING THERE.

    Super ackward and kinda stalkery.

    That’s the thing. All these people I barely know are (possibly) reading my blog and not commenting and I’m not smart enough to know if I can track that or not.

    Amos last blog post..But next year, I want money.

  12. #12 Heidi
    on May 13th, 2009 at 4:48 pm

    I totally don’t get the scrapbooking thing either! Blogging is my way of scrapbooking I guess. “come on kids, lets huddle around the computer and look at our vacation photos”

    Just be yourself! I am always drawn to people who are open and honest!!

    Heidis last blog post..Hobby Lobby Finds

  13. #13 Kyla
    on May 13th, 2009 at 5:27 pm

    The only person I know in real life who knows about my blog that I don’t know through blogging (did you follow that?) is our pediatrician, and I almost had a heart attack after telling her. I’m anonymous and I kind of like it that way.

  14. #14 Cheryl
    on May 13th, 2009 at 7:34 pm

    Personally, I would just let it come out naturally, but that’s my opinion. I am always surprised to find out that people I know read my blog. I write it for me, so it’s always interesting to me to find out that others read it as well.

    Good luck with whatever you decide to do though!


    Cheryls last blog post..I know you’ve barely been able to contain yourself

  15. #15 Ami Czorapinski
    on May 14th, 2009 at 2:10 pm

    The people in GA will never understand. You should just throw out the whole moving to GA thing and head further north to Maryland! Love you and I think you should scream to the world that you’re a blogger! You know they won’t care anyway. They’re only gonna care that you were on Oprah!!!

  16. #16 Jamie
    on May 14th, 2009 at 2:12 pm

    I have ALWAYS lived here and we are not moving but I understand where you’re coming from. I am oddly protective about my blog which is completely not right in the head of me as I’ve been interviewed in our local NEWSPAPER about blogging. I waited for the phones to start ringing and they didn’t but my boss did learn about my blog (and loves it) and my daughter’s daycare posted the article on their bulletin board. I initially had a slight panic wondering when and if I’d been writing nasty things about co-workers but thankfully I have always had a policy to not write about work.

    When I started blogging 3 1/2 years ago I told my family and close friends and that was it. Since then I’ve learned that most people I know don’t read blogs, but think it’s “neat” and that’s about it. So I prefer to just let people find out naturally. And there’s that one mom at my daughter’s dance studio who said she saw me in the paper and that she just “didn’t have time” to get on the Internet much less blog. (I’m pretty sure under her breath she was thinking…you are a WEIRDO.)

    Blogging is my hobby but it’s just a strangely “out there on the Internet” writing about one’s self hobby. I don’t expect people at the soccer field to come up to me and tell me they are champion scarf knitters or scrapbooking queens, so I just sit back and Tweet from my iPhone and if they ask me what the heck I’m doing I’ll tell them.

    You could always get one of those “I’m so blogging this shirts” or just tell people you are a writer when they ask what you do…and then segue into the blog thing.

    OK clearly I am not OCD about this topic or anything. 😉

    Jamies last blog post..A Career At Hallmark Is Questionable

  17. #17 Natalie
    on May 14th, 2009 at 3:16 pm

    Be proud! I love blogs, and I’ve lived in GA all my life, South Georgia that is, where not many people know how to turn on a computer. So scream it, and then people will either get you or not.

    Natalies last blog post..Letting go

  18. #18 always home and uncool
    on May 14th, 2009 at 4:32 pm

    I’ve already taken out ads with all the local TV, radio and newspaper outlets on your behalf. I felt it was a public service.

    always home and uncools last blog post..It’s Only a Paper Moon

  19. #19 Trish @ Another Piece of the Puzzle
    on May 14th, 2009 at 6:14 pm

    Here’s what popped into my head when I read your post – you had talked a little while ago about whether you were going to change the name of your blog, right? That was you, wasn’t it?

    Anyway, telling people about it with the current title will bring up the question of why it’s called that and lots more questions than you might normally get. I know it’s not a secret or anything, but the thought just occurred to me that if you are going to make a change, you might want to do it before you “come out” to your new neighbors.

    Just my $0.02.

    Trish @ Another Piece of the Puzzles last blog post..Support ASD HOPE with GoodSearch

  20. #20 AnissaM
    on May 15th, 2009 at 3:15 pm

    The scary thing is that I put enough of myself on my blog that preconceived notions will be too close to the truth!

    Maybe i’ll start vlogging and just peek in people’s windows to REALLY freak them out! LOL

  21. #21 AnissaM
    on May 15th, 2009 at 3:19 pm

    I should really send Dooce and email telling her she’s cramping my style by not announcing a close association, right? I’m NOT proud!

  22. #22 AnissaM
    on May 15th, 2009 at 3:19 pm

    You could just…I don’t know…CALL ME!

  23. #23 AnissaM
    on May 15th, 2009 at 3:20 pm

    Oh this should just be so much fun!!

    Maybe I’ll get the “I’m tweeting this” shirt just to really scare all the neighbors who don’t know what tweeting is and what exactly I can do with it. <---insert evil cackle HERE!

  24. #24 AnissaM
    on May 15th, 2009 at 3:22 pm

    At least you’re not a GYN so you’re introduced as “my friend who sticks her hands in women’s vajayjays all day!” HEH, see if they’ll shake your hand THEN.

    Dooce is so missing out by not acknowledging her love for me! *snort*

  25. #25 AnissaM
    on May 15th, 2009 at 3:25 pm

    You have internet in the Ozarks? *snicker*

    I’m fully prepared for people to NOT get it, I just hope there’s not outright shunning of our weirdness.

  26. #26 AnissaM
    on May 15th, 2009 at 3:25 pm

    Note to self: Sandwich board with your own photo on it is considered tacky.

  27. #27 AnissaM
    on May 15th, 2009 at 3:26 pm

    Awww, Jesus loves a good blog, I believe it!

    And I can’t help but believe he has one hell of good sense of humor…trust me, Jenny the Bloggess will have prime billing in the afterlife.

  28. #28 AnissaM
    on May 15th, 2009 at 3:28 pm

    Maybe I’ll just tell them I run a porn site and see if that generates any extra traffic as the scope from page to page trying to find the nekkid!

    Gimmicks WORK

  29. #29 AnissaM
    on May 15th, 2009 at 3:28 pm

    Dude, I need you to guestpost for me in about 3 weeks, you up for it?

  30. #30 AnissaM
    on May 15th, 2009 at 3:29 pm

    Awww, you KNOW you hit it big when you get to start having awkward moments with people who know too much about you and make your skin crawl a little bit. SO PROUD of you! *heh*

    Aren’t you using Statcounter or something to stalk your readers right back?

  31. #31 AnissaM
    on May 15th, 2009 at 3:31 pm

    YEAH! Blogging is totally my scrapbook, without all the painful glue issues and matching paper. GAG

    HOW honest do you think I should be? I-blog-honest or want-to-see-my-mug-shot-honest?

  32. #32 AnissaM
    on May 15th, 2009 at 3:31 pm

    There are DEFINITELY days I wish I was anonymous…but that’s when I go to Her Bad Mother’s Basement and vent until the steam finally lets up.

  33. #33 AnissaM
    on May 15th, 2009 at 3:34 pm

    EXACTLY! I started writing for Peyton and then for me and it’s just so darn personal that having THAT be people’s first impressions of me before they get to actually know me sort of feels like inviting them to be a spectator at my pap smear, you know?

  34. #34 AnissaM
    on May 15th, 2009 at 3:34 pm

    I’ll just get a “As seen on Oprah” tshirt and wear it EVERY day for the first year…or just move in with you.

  35. #35 AnissaM
    on May 15th, 2009 at 3:36 pm

    I love my OCD friends!

    I want one of Miss Britt’s tshirts that say “I’m sort of a big deal on the internet” but I’m always afraid people will think I do online porn or something.

  36. #36 AnissaM
    on May 15th, 2009 at 3:37 pm

    That’s pretty much the story of my entire life, so not quite sure why I’m worrying about it now.

  37. #37 AnissaM
    on May 15th, 2009 at 3:38 pm

    Are they friendly ads or are they “THE END IS NIGH” kinds of ads?

  38. #38 AnissaM
    on May 15th, 2009 at 3:40 pm

    That’s a GREAT point, I am planning to launch a new personal blog and retire this one after BlogHer, so that’ll give me some time to get it up and running before the transition and before I really start meeting anyone up there in GA.

    I’m keeping H4P up and live, available for other cancer parents, but write my day to day stuff somewhere else.


  39. #39 Posts about Dooce as of May 15, 2009 » The Daily Parr
    on May 16th, 2009 at 12:00 am

    […] about Dooce as of May 15, 2009 To reveal or not to reveal – hope4peyton.org 05/13/2009 Most of the people who know I write a blog fall into very specific […]

  40. #40 Mary in ATL
    on May 16th, 2009 at 8:18 am

    Don’t worry to much about if GEORGIA will get you- very few of us are natives, most of your neighbors will be from somewhere else.

    I think the new blog idea is a good one. We have a hard time not calling you “cancer mom” when I tell hubs-like something I am reading on H4P. It’s time for you to have a new story and a fresh start – all of you! I mean that in the best way, I know the “family” you have met thru this whole thing are going to foundation in life – but the day to day thing, you get to move on.

    And BTW no gun rack or mini van required in GA – no matter what they try to tell you at the border crossing. You do have to learn a few things to survive here- how to order at The Varsity, where (and what) The Big Chicken is, which Peachtree street , road , lane or other you mean to be on….coke not pepsi, tea should be sweet, biscuits, gravy & grits. Waffle Houses are not a good landmark- we have one on every corner. The other corner is drugstore…..

    Low down on sports Braves are our heart, Falcons not so much, Thrashers are fun, Hawks – had a good year but don’t count on repeats too often.

    just my two cents …..

  41. #41 Carrie
    on May 16th, 2009 at 11:33 pm

    Hey, in my part of GA, everyone’s just a little weird, so we all fit in! No one’s a native here either, so all of your conversations for the first six months will start with. . .”So, where are you from? Why’d you move to GA?” Sometimes, I try to come up with really creative answers. Maybe that’s why people look at me strangely. 🙂

    Carries last blog post..End of Baseball

  42. #42 Brittany
    on May 18th, 2009 at 9:37 pm

    I say let them figure it out once they see you on Oprah…again.

    Brittanys last blog post..Babies are hard, yo.

  43. #43 Heather @ Domestic Extraordinaire
    on May 20th, 2009 at 11:29 am

    I say hand out your business cards like candy. Well if you hand those out and candy I am sure that you will make lots of friends, because seriously who doesn’t like candy. And I am not talking about that cheap crap. You gotta spend a little so your new peeps know that ya’ care. And if they don’t like candy…well screw ’em.


    Heather @ Domestic Extraordinaires last blog post..Giggles circa 1980something

  44. #44 Jennifer, Playgroups are no place for children
    on May 21st, 2009 at 2:47 pm

    Being the professional mover that I am, I find that NOT revealing immediately is wise. I usually like to get to know someone first before letting on that I’m an egocentric writer.

    If I get to know someone that it’s obvious to me wouldn’t understand my blog, it’s a kind of barometer to determining if a real friendship could develop. I guess I don’t really think I could be truly close with someone that would think my blog is totally weird.

    Jennifer, Playgroups are no place for childrens last blog post..Jennifer and Tate’s culinary journey down the International foods aisle! Episode 2