Friday, February 7, 2014

Think Before You Publish

I recently published an entry that dealt with the intricacies of marital life. It was very personal. I have removed it from public view. Unfortunately, I did so after publishing it, then sharing it on Facebook.

Not only was it personal, but I wrote about marital challenges. Initially, it seemed like something that was on my mind and something that I wanted to document to have for the future. Also, I thought that many people could relate to the challenges.

Unfortunately, what I did not consider was that I was not just writing about myself but also about my wife. Not only was I putting myself out in public, but my best friend. And, without considering how she would feel about this story being out there.

Doing this blog for seven years, I have walked the line many times between documenting my life and putting sensitive personal issues in the public eye. If I were to analyze the posts, my guess is that many would follow this format:
1. Describe a situation
2. Share my analysis of the situation
3. Consider future remedies or alternatives

The problem is in the #1. Specifically, in describing a situation. Since this is about my life as a homemaker with a wife and children, the situations are about my wife, my children, and me. Me: okay. The others: I don't have their permission. It's not like I'm blogging about sports or other public figures.

I am going to have to think hard about how this will effect my kids, or how they will view it later on. Will JD care that I talked about being austistic? Bunny about her idiosyncrasies? At the moment, they are not aware of the internet and its scope and reach.

Wife is fully aware. And perhaps that's what I have to think about - if she is sometimes frustrated with some of the things that I post (rightfully so) then perhaps Bunny and JD will be, too.

The deeper question:

Why bother posting these thoughts and feelings publicly, rather than keep a private journal?

Perhaps my format for writing should be:
1. Write entry on Google Drive or MS Word
2. Read it and decide if it is for public or private consumption
3. If needed, consult my partner

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