I'm a closet blogger. And not the kind you might be thinking of, because clearly it has nothing to do with fashion. I've been blogging for going on seven years (!!) and I am still very much in the closet about it. Sometimes I feel as if I'm leading a double life because the majority of people in real life have never seen my blog. The rest of them don't know that I blog at all. I can count on one hand the number of people who have the link and of those people I think MJ is the only one who reads. They are MJ, my mom, my two sisters and a good friend who lives out of state and outside my social circle. They all know I blog on the down low and that it is not something I want people to know about.
|Top secret blog post coming right up|
No one I know in real life is allowed to follow me on any social media I use that links to my blog. That's Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest. Keeping my blog name a secret means, that there is little to no chance they'll find me. I specifically told MJ he isn't allowed to follow me so he knows better, but when my little sister followed me on Instagram I had to block her until she unfollowed me. Maybe that was a little extreme, but if she follows me, then friends and family that follow her might find my blog and I can't have that.
I was really nervous about starting a blog Facebook page. It was just a little too close for comfort and I was afraid that it would show up somewhere on my personal page. I almost had a heart attack one day when I realized I accidentally shared something under my blog Facebook Page to my personal Facebook profile. I frantically deleted the share from my news feed, terrified that I had outed myself. It's been over a year now, and I think I'm safe as long as I don't promote my Facebook posts or use the wrong profile in the wrong place.
For a long time I didn't mention it to friends at all. I didn't want them to read and I didn't want to feel obligated to share, but I've been doing it for so long that after awhile it felt weird not to. I have no illusions that friends and family are clamoring to find out more about my super exciting life or blast my posts out on social media, but once that url is out there is no taking it back, and I want to keep blog life separate from real life. I started mentioning that I blog here and there only recently, because I wanted to avoid that awkward conversation.
Yes, I have a blog, and no you can't read it.
I had to get comfortable with saying that it's just something I prefer to keep for myself....and random internet strangers. Nothing personal. It turns out that people can respect that, and then it only gets more awkward when they ask what I blog about. Ooohh...anything I want...life. Most non bloggers think it's weird.
I prefer to keep blogging my secret and yet, it's on the internet that never forgets open to the whole wide world, so it's no secret at all. Maybe it makes no sense that I am so private about something so public, but people I know in real life and anonymous strangers are two very different audiences. When anonymous strangers read my blog I still feel somewhat anonymous, but when it comes to people in real life I feel extremely exposed. And judged. I would much rather be judged by anonymous strangers than people I know. I'm not going to say I don't care at all, but I certainly don't care as much about internet strangers because I didn't go to school with them, or work with them. They aren't friends with my husband and I will probably never meet them in real life. If I ever do it would most likely be a blogger, which would make it okay because being a fellow blogger, they "get it," and we are all in it together.
My internet presence is definitely me, but it is also kind of not me in the sense that it's the me I present to the internet. I'm naturally a private person, but keeping the internet me and the real life me separate is what allows me to be as open as I am, which isn't even as open as a lot of other bloggers are. I don't share deep dark secrets on the blog so it's not like I'm really hiding too much over here. I try to stick to content I would be okay with anyone reading about, but it's way more than what I share on Facebook and it is comforting to know that people I know aren't likely to see it. I like my quasi privacy. There is freedom in that.
I love writing and I really love this space. When I write a blog post I'm really proud of I am bursting to share, but the majority of the time I'm exceedingly glad that it's still my secret. The fact that my blood runs cold any time I think I've been outed is enough to tell me that I'm not ready to share. In a blogging world so intent on increase traffic! and get more followers! this may not be the best strategy, but I don't care. The internet is vast and my blog isn't big enough or viral enough for someone I know to accidentally stumble upon it. I figure if there ever comes a day where that happens then so be it, but I'm probably not going to be the one to tell.