I love it when…

People find old blog posts I wrote and try to comment, then can’t. I was looking at Statcounter this morning and noticed someone had found my article about Kelsey, the 13 year old girl whose father cut off her hair a couple of years ago. That post, which was written in February 2018, attracted a lot of comments when I was still allowing comments on that blog.

At the time I wrote that post, I was hesitant to immediately throw Kelsey’s dad and stepmom under the bus. Of course, I didn’t condone what they did– I don’t think they should have cut the girl’s hair. I can absolutely see why that would be horrifying for anyone, particularly an adolescent. But I also disagreed with those who were calling the haircut the “height of abuse”. Sorry… I am quite sure she was traumatized, but I can think of much worse abuses than a bad haircut. Hair grows back. I don’t want to list the other things that I think are much worse than a forced haircut. I’m sure smart people will understand what I mean.

Anyway, I didn’t write an update, although a couple of people had asked for one. I read that Kelsey went to live with her mother, which is probably for the best. I don’t automatically assume mothers are always the better parents and I didn’t necessarily agree with the mom’s choice to make this a viral event. But it sounds like, in this case, Kelsey might be better off with her mom– I don’t know for sure, though, since I don’t know these people. If I had actually gone into public health or social work, which is what I got my master’s degrees in, I might have even been in a position to know the real scoop. I’m glad I didn’t go that route, to be very honest.

Lately, that post has been getting a lot of traffic. I’ve seen a couple of people try to comment, but I currently have the old blog set up so that only “blog members” can comment. I am the only “blog member”, so currently, no one else can comment there. Anyone who wants to comment on my old stuff can do it on Facebook on my official OH page. People don’t want to do that, though, because they like anonymity. I get that. I just don’t want to encourage comments on the old blog, since I’d eventually like to retire it or move it to this new site. For some reason, I can’t seem to import the old blog to this one. I need more skills. I can see that people are still interested, and more than a couple have wanted to comment, but would rather not interact on Facebook. Understandable, I guess.

It always cracks me up to see how upset some people get when a person dares to express their opinions, even when it’s just on a personal blog like this one. For a long time, my old blog was pretty much under the radar and I could be totally free with my thoughts. As my old blog got more popular, I found myself being harassed by people who were offended by things I wrote. Some people liked my posts… probably more people liked them than disliked them. But every once in awhile, I’d get irate comments from people who either identified too strongly or were actually involved in things I’d opined on. Or some were projecting their own situations on subjects I’d tackled and weren’t able to see or agree with my perspective.

Although it’s a little disheartening to start over after having spent about nine years building my old blog, in a way, it’s also very freeing not to have so many people reading anymore. I don’t mind entertaining other people’s viewpoints, but I don’t tolerate rudeness. I look at my blog as my house. I wouldn’t go to someone’s house and insult them, so I don’t see why I should have to tolerate that on my blog. Moreover, my opinions are just that– opinions– and they are my own. You don’t have to agree with me, but you can’t come in my “house” and be an asshole. If you do, I’ll show you the door.

I don’t know if today’s attempted comment was complimentary or a complaint, but I did notice that the person who tried to comment did find his or her way to this spot on the web. I guess this new blog isn’t interesting enough yet. On the other hand, a few days ago, I got a ration of shit from a man who was upset that I could tell two idiots are Trump supporters. I guess he’s a Trump supporter and offended that I would lump the two guys who shot each other while wearing a bulletproof vest in with guys like him. Folks, I think anyone who still supports Trump isn’t long on common sense. But that’s just my opinion, yo. You don’t have to agree. Since it’s “my house”, I’m going to say what I want. Don’t like it? Leave.

Another thing I notice is that some readers think they actually know me… and they assume they know what I’m going to do. I do have a couple of readers who know me offline, but most people who read this rag are people I have never met in person. Or, if I have met them, I don’t really know them that well.

For instance, on my old blog, I had a follower who assumed the fiction blog I’d proposed starting was going to be full of nastiness toward someone she knows offline. The funny thing is, the person she thought I was writing about is a complete stranger to me. I have never even met the person. If she’d given me a chance, and not meddled in my business, she would have soon found out that writing about her friend wasn’t actually my plan… and the person she thought I was referencing, was, in fact, a figment entirely of my imagination. I doubt she’d believe me, because I think her mind is made up about the kind of person she thinks I am. She kept reading anyway. I will eventually start my fiction blog, though, and she will not be able to stop me from expressing myself the way I want to. Don’t like it? Don’t read it.

I think people who read blogs– especially ones that include a lot of TMI like mine does– erroneously assume they aren’t still total strangers with the writer. There’s something that drives people to read these posts. A lot of the most popular ones are about popular news items. I find that if you don’t support popular opinion, you get a lot of shit from the peanut gallery and people want to set you straight. I have repeatedly written that I write to process. It’s something I do to be constructive, stay mentally active, and learn new things. I’ve had people make all kinds of false assumptions and accusations. A lot of people seem to think they can mindread, which is really interesting when they’re total strangers who only know what they’ve read. But people do that. I do it myself.

Like everyone else, I write about my opinions and impressions, mostly based on what I read in news articles, books, or see with my own eyes. I will admit to being wrong sometimes, but I’m not stupid. And honestly, telling me off doesn’t do a whole lot to change my mind. It’s a poor form of communication. I don’t know what today’s would-be commenter would have had to say. Perhaps it would be yet more chastising about how off base I am, or how heartless I am… or yet more commentary and insults about how I’m not actually “overeducated”. Do you feel better saying that to me? Maybe I should start charging people for that kind of therapy instead of turning it into more blogging.