This blog is my place to vent and share resources with other parents of children of trauma. I try to be open and honest about my feelings in order to help others know they are not alone. Therapeutic parenting of adopted teenagers with RAD and other severe mental illnesses and issues (plus "neurotypical" teens) , is not easy, and there are time when I say what I feel... at the moment. We're all human!

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Blogging on Privacy

Annie over at One Mother's Day recently wrote a blog post called Second Thoughts regarding posting about our kids. It seems to me there are different categories of bloggers.

Cutesy - these seem more for out of state grandparents. They are mostly pictures of the kids and what cute thing they've done lately. I don't know much about these because I don't read them.

Diary - a place to vent that's written more for the blogger themself without thinking too much about what others want to read. This is definitely how my blog started. I did want people to maybe give me some words of affirmation though so I started broadening my category.

Entertainment - these are usually flat out funny. You're not going to see much of the dirty side of life (unless it's funny). Pioneer Woman, Because I Said So, Pulsipher Predilictions...

Informational - focused on a specific topic like photography, RAD parenting, who knows.

I hope my blog is entertaining although I don't try as hard to be funny as I used to in the beginning. I definitely want my blog to be informational. I need words of affirmation so I want to provide something that people will comment about.


Privacy versus Letting it All Hang Out.

Some people use their real names and their kids real names while others use cutesy nicknames or Child#1 though 7. On the comments of One Mother's Day the consensus appeared to be against using cutesy nick names. Oh well. Obviously my kids's real names are not Bear, Kitty, Bob or Ponito (although sometimes I slip and call them that).

Some have pictures. Others have no pictures or identifying information at all. My mom hates that I include pictures of my kids. I love being able to share pictures of my gorgeous babies.

Of those that share "private information" - Some parents ask their kids what they're comfortable having shared on the blog. Some don't identify which of their children are misbehaving and/or speak in generalities (obviously this only works for those that have more than one or two children). Then there are parents like me who don't ask the kids and just share.

I liked one of the comments on One Mother's Day regarding how it doesn't bother her kids as much what she writes on her blog because the kids assume the parent says the same things to her friends, and maybe less because most of the people who read the blog might be people the blogger doesn't know IRL (in real life). I've found this is true for me too. I don't find myself venting to people IRL, of course some of that is because I don't talk to people IRL as much.

I worry sometimes what would happen if the kids or their birthmom read my blog. Somedays I kind of want Birthmom to read it, so she gets a clue what she did to these kids.

I know it bothers Bear what I write on here. It bothers Kitty too. I think a little of this is guilty conscience. Mostly Bear can't stand anyone talking about him at all. I need it though.

I never really thought about would happen if my kids found my blog. I think it's pretty safe in that it's not associated with my real name at all so unlike my facebook account you can't search for my name and find it (did I mention Biomom found me on Facebook last year? I closed my account. I didn't use it much anyway).

Truthfully I think nothing much would happen if the kids did find it. Of course Bear doesn't read, but if he actually did read it he would be mad. This is his response to all "labels" and other's opinions. It's his way of running away from the truth. Of course he doesn't need any more reason to be mad at me. Overall it wouldn't make much difference.

One of my readers posts on her blog about her life, her family, and recently, her plans for adopting again. Her "adult" daughter finds this adoption inconvenient and has been sabotaging her mother's plans with IRL friends and family. Recently her daughter posted a comment on her mother's blog about how unfair it is for her mother to do this to her. It was a selfish, self-centered, entitled comment and of course the daughter only showed how mentally ill she really is. I could see my son making a comment exactly like it. What is truely sad is that apparently the blogger seems to have shut down her blog completely.

I don't want to post my friend's name here, but she knows who she is. I want you to know that I think your daughter is way out of line and I hope you don't stop blogging forever. Hugs and prayers are going up for you and your whole family (including those who are becoming part of your family).


shastastevens said...

Weird that the consensus was for no cutsey names. I finally gave mine names because of the number of emails I kept getting asking for them!

Tara - SanitySrchr said...

Oh no!!! I'm sad to hear that she shut down her blog. I learn from her, I NEED her, I encourage her (I hope). I'm sad to hear that her adult daughter is spiraling right now, when this really could be a time of joy.

I learn alot from the people I follow (like you), and I will continue to lurk to learn more. :)

I'm not as concerned about the biomom finding my blog. (a) it's nothing I wouldn't tell her to her face (b) every last bit of what I write is 100% true (c) prove it's me and (d) she's not smart enough. Most of the church has been reading my blog since NOVEMBER...long story, but caused really big drama. I'm not changing it though.

GB's Mom said...

I haven't shut down- I just moved.the new url is

I am trying to figure out if I can password protect it, but if not I will still be out there. Thanks for the support!

Tara - SanitySrchr said...

Whew!!!! I was worried when I read this!

Kristina P. said...

Thanks for lumping me in the funny category!

I was actually talking to my coworker about this yesterday. My biggest regret is putting my last name on my blog. I think the entire division I work for knows about my blog. Sigh.

Right now, my position is such that I have such limited interaction with the kids I work with, and we have such a high turnover because it's short-term crisis, that they don't know my first name, most of the time, let alone my last.

But if I move to a job in the future, like for DCFS or probation, or something, I would start using my maiden name professionally. Not just because of my blog, but because of all those online directories that keep popping up. Those make me nervous, and I wouldn't want someone to be able to find me.

marythemom said...

GB's Mom - I'd love an invitation to the new site. here's my addy - mbrush at austin dot rr dot com

Tara - my kid's biomom has borderline personality disorder. Right now I think I'm on a pedestal with her, but something like this would blow me right off. People with BPD live in a very black and white world. In most ways I don't care, but she does still have my kids' younger sisters.

Kristina P. - I never knew whether to admire you for your bravery or mock you for your choice. I've never really known you to put anything identifying or truly embarassing about someone else on your blog (well... except for that co-worker with the "man crush", but I assume he knows that his admission throws him open to well-deserved mockery), but that's one thing I enjoy about the anonymity of my blog is that I can write about other's foibles. People like SocialWorker 24/7 would have to keep a lot off their site which wouldn't be as helpful to the rest of us.

If you wanted to you could do what a lot of people do and start a new blog (without all the identifying info). It just depends on what you want from your blog. Just make sure I/we know how to find you because I don't know what I'd do without a dose of your humor on a regular basis. I don't have time to read all the blogs that I follow, but yours is one that will never be dropped from my reader.


Annie said...

I think names are important, but for some reason I can't focus on "cute" ones sufficiently well to remember if the child so designated is the 4 year old boy or the sixteen year old girl. I'm not sure it isn't some sort of learning disability on my part, though. Especially as all of my children are REALLY (most frequently) called by cute names, to wit: Sproutie, Chick, Werg, Loosh, Tink and Zhenion.

I didn't really think that the daughter's comment seemed that selfish or crazed. In fact, I it did help me to see both sides - and only emphasized how difficult it is to live in families. Perfect love solves all problems - but how many of us are capable of that?

Megan said...

My daughter knows that I keep my blog and write about our family and her struggles too, but I don't use my last name, or any of my kids real names, or name where we live, though people would know it is in the Hampton Roads area of Virginia. Sometimes I will read loud to her the positive comments people make about how encouraged they are by our story. I don't let her read everything however. One day she may really protest but I hope that day is far off. I need to blog to keep my own sanity.

Integrity Singer said...

so that's what happened with GB's mom! I wondered why her blog disappeared!

marythemom said...

Annie - I didn't think she sounded crazed, but you really didn't think her comment sounded selfish?! She's an "adult" (maybe not really, but she's having a baby). This was all about what she wants and what she thinks is best for her unborn baby that she's having while she lives in her mother's house. Her mom is supporting her, and the baby, and this has nothing to do with what the mom wants and needs?! What about the little girl about to be adopted? Doesn't she count?

While I would definitely take my other children's needs into consideration when deciding to have another child (biologically or through adoption), and I might ask their opinion, they do NOT get to make the decision.

Mary in TX

家唐銘 said...

好的開始並不代表會成功,壞的開始並不代表是失敗.................................................. said...

I struggle with where that line is for us too and as more people discover my blog I worry more about what might happen when I am really honest. It's a choice though and I try no to say anything that I would not say aloud to a firend in a coffeeshop becaue you never know...