Us bloggers love our little corners of the internet, it’s a place just for us. We create a ‘show home’ that the world is invited to take a little look around. Sometimes they’ll stumble in from Google, or a link they’ve seen socially, other times it’s just friends and family taking a cursory glance. We put our lives and opinions out there for all to see and judge.
Of course, the reality often is distorted in blogging land. We don’t put up the pictures of the mess, or the rubbish. We don’t write about ‘real’ things – it’s all filtered, airbrushed, and tweaked. That’s fine, everyone does it – not everyone’s children are constantly grinning cherubs. Our other halves aren’t always perfect. We put out our best china, hoover the floor, and let everyone who wants to have a nosey into our world.
Often though, a blogger will never be challenged on their opinion – we’re never ones to make a fuss. No one likes to say ‘I simply don’t agree’ – it’s not in our DNA. Because everyone is so polite, and kind, even if they DON’T agree with a point, they’ll just tell you you’re right. It saves an argument, or fear you’ll be bitched about, just be nice, nod and agree.
Thing is.. I’m not like that.
I’m stubborn, and argumentative. I try not to be rude, or personal, I’m just a bit blunt at times – so if my opinion is asked, I’ll give it – often unfiltered.
Remember when that holiday company were after this year’s Blogger Ambassadors for their brand? They wanted some content created about how or why you’d be a good ‘family’ for them. Soon the blogosphere became jam packed with entries, some brilliant, others not.
A blogging friend asked for my opinion on their entry. I’d already seen it, and honestly, it just wasn’t for me. It just felt too twee and a bit much. There was clearly a lot of time and effort in it, but I just didn’t like it. I told them this, and also said my opinion didn’t matter as I wasn’t judging, but I’d opened a Pandora’s Box that I couldn’t close.
The blogger had been told by others how great their entry was, and how they should definitely win, so my negative reaction hurt them. But they’d asked for my opinion, and whilst I don’t think I was overly harsh, my opinion on their work meant I lost them as a friend. If you can’t be honest with friends, who can you be honest with?
So… what does this have to do with being ‘damaged’?
Roll forwards to last week, in that time, the aforementioned blogger hadn’t spoken to me, and indeed hadn’t got the Ambassador role. They’d written a post that largely was anger towards young female singers having questionable lyrical content in their songs. Talk of getting drunk, doing silly things, enjoying it, and wanting to do it all over again. Whilst I agree with the sentiment in some respects, your average child isn’t really listening and understand the lyrics. It’s just catchy music to them.
Also, on the other hand, generally most men and women of age will probably go out, get drunk, do something stupid, but probably end up enjoying it, and doing it again. So whilst the message shouldn’t really be followed as an instruction manual, it happens. We all do stupid things, and so will our kids.
Unfortunately, the blogger didn’t really want to discuss, or hear opinion other than their own. When challenged over Twitter she actually called my friend ‘damaged’ for not agreeing with her. That was just a bit too much.
I understand not everyone has the same opinions or beliefs as each other, but name calling, especially like that is uncalled for. We need to challenge each other as bloggers, not just nod and agree like fools – a bit of discussion and conflict is good. Refreshing even. We can’t always be on the same sides – but we can discuss and learn from each other. Name calling is just so childish, be a grown up, respect other’s opinions.