Commenting is welcome here.

During the time I have been writing on this blog a few commenters have said that I’m depressed. When this first happened I got so upset that I almost stopped blogging because of it. I deleted a lot of my posts that seemed too personal and started to vigorously self-censor what I wrote. This of course felt stilted and unnatural, and over the course of the last year or so, I have gone back to being more honest.

I can now say, with an inner sense of certainty, that I do not believe in the concept of depression, or in any other psychological diagnosis. I am also on a path towards not letting authority figures shape my reality. I will call whatever I feel whatever I want to call it, or not give it any name at all. If other people want to use the term depression or any other word to describe their feelings and emotions, I will respect their choice, but I will not apply these to terms to myself.

As I said in a previous post, words can hurt. Through blogging, I am teaching myself (through trial and error), to speak in a way that is not hurtful to others while still doing my best to accurately convey my truth. I am also learning how to do this by living in a shared housing environment. It has become clear during the past three years of blogging that various followers have left because I either offended them or they did not agree with my point of view. By losing and gaining followers, I get a certain kind of feedback regarding the way I communicate.

Jessica Valenti of the Guardian wrote an article this morning about “commenting” in which she said, “It shouldn’t be a surprise that I’m not fond of comments sections. I think you’d be hard-pressed to find many female writers who are. On most sites – from YouTube to local newspapers – comments are a place where the most noxious thoughts rise to the top and smart conversations are lost in a sea of garbage.”

I consider myself fortunate in that my blog attracts a very respectful group of people who have been overwhelmingly loving and supportive. Without this support, I probably would have given up on blogging a long time ago. So, while some comments seem off the mark, the vast majority are an integral part of me enjoying this experience and learning how to be a better communicator along the way. Two of my personal blogging rules pretty much cover everything regarding comments, 1) I will not engage in online arguments, and 2) I will not publish anything that comes across as mean-spirited.

Someone commented awhile back that she enjoyed reading my posts even though she did not always agree with my point of view. I guess I could say the same about comments, I enjoy reading them even though I don’t always agree with what is being said. Another person said that the comments I get are part of what she likes about my blog and I wholeheartedly agree with this. When I turned off commenting for a few months, I felt cut off from the flow of sharing that inspires and stimulates me.

So, to all who have commented, thank-you – and for anyone who wants to comment but hasn’t, commenting is welcome here.

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15 thoughts on “Commenting is welcome here.

  1. I applaud your refusal to engage in online arguing and with mean spirited commentators.

    However; I am one who finds many of your posts to be well, less than uplifting. I believe that we ultimately make a choice to be happy. How happy we are seems to be a combination of a somewhat genetic set point and our own efforts. I do think that medication can and does help the brain chemistry but is not enough. I actively pursue happiness – gratitude, avoiding draining people, nurturing my mind and body, talking with a professional therapist occasionally, etc.

    I think it is brave and helpful of you to share your journey. It is not my journey, it is yours. I don’t presume to judge.

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    1. Thank you. The only choice I am currently able to make is to be more awake, aware and honest. Other than what I have experienced in brief fleeting moments, I don’t know what happiness is.

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  2. You are absolutely right not to engage in online arguments…they do nothing but upset and cement people into their views. I try hard not to hurt peoples feeling while also trying to make meaningful comments but some bloggers have not yet learned to do that but I still get upset the way some people communicate online. I have noticed one or two on here that I thought were quite rude and have come across some on my blog like that but I have put it down to people being on the low end of the learning curve. We all have to start somewhere I guess!Always enjoy your posts Rachael even when I don’t comment.

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    1. Thanks, I always appreciate your comments and enjoy reading your posts as well. It is often hard to recognize when people are being rude to me. Maybe this is because I have a hard time defending myself. If I knew someone was being rude, then I would feel compelled to take action and I wouldn’t know what to do.

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  3. I love to read comments. Some are hurtful and I think you are brave to continue to be open to them. There is nothing wrong with “sounding depressed”–there are a lot of reasons (good ones) for a person to feel that way. It’s a form of shaming to say “you sound depressed. ” Your feelings, whether they be negative or positive, are your feelings and your honesty is brave and admirable. That is why I enjoy your blog, so don’t stop!

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  4. I’m happy that you’re writing regularly again. I’ve stuck with your blog because I follow quite a few introvert blogs. Yours is the most introspective out there, which makes it tricky for me to relate to at times. You present a relentless philosophical perspective that almost always shines a bit of light on my own changing perspective of society and aging. I’m pleased you have kept comments active on your blog, I really believe they represent the best reasons for reaching out in this way. Self publishing has been a big help for me, and I now write more than ever- but not all my writing is proffered on my blogs.

    Ultimately, I feel your blog is one of the bravest out there. If you can begin to gleen some consistent happiness from what you write daily, all the better. ~TH~

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  5. Although I came upon your blog only recently, already I agree with other comments above. Philosophical, brave, honest, open …. these are what kept me coming back after first being attracted by the title, which showed up in a sharing on FB. I, for one, am glad you gave up on the self censorship!
    Yesterday I read a poem by Charlie Chaplin – AS I BEGAN TO LOVE MYSELF. I thought you might find it interesting. It was shared by Tess – tesshughes.com

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  6. I’m sorry to hear that someone’s thoughtless rambling hurt your purpose. People say mean things to displace their anger. Many do not realise that their words could have devastating effects. I don’t understand why someone has to make the point of saying, “I don’t agree with everything you say.” To me, it sounds confrontational and when I’ve heard it, the person was condescending. Your policy of focusing on the lovely people who support you is correct. It acts as a deterrent to the sorts of people who can ruin your day. Best wishes. x

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