Why Have I Kept My Blog A Secret From My Friends and Family?

It’s not because I think it sucks. I don’t. Actually considering my usual quantities of self-esteem I find I am relatively proud of this site.

Forty four posts in and I have had to change my own notions of what constitutes failure. I had thought that I would delete posts that didn’t attract enough (‘enough’ according to who?) likes or comments but instead I have let everything remain as it is and I find for the second time in my life that very often it is the whole picture – so to speak – which makes something worth valuing.

Even the posts I would change if I were to write them again now seem to reflect a personal and stylistic growth when left together with their more recent additions. That’s worth something I think.

I told my boyfriend about this endeavour when I already had the name, the idea and the themes for it organised; I told a single friend here in Ireland who has visited a handful of times and seems generally uninterested; I told a friend and ex-colleague.

Whenever I read articles about improving the visibility of your blog online it always comes back around in one way or another to social media. Promote your site! Tell everyone! I don’t have Facebook, which you’ll know if you’ve been following me for a while, and I have no intention of returning to it just for the sake of a couple of extra visitors to my site. I do have Instagram but though the people I follow and those who follow me are my friends, colleagues or members of my boyfriend’s family I cannot bring myself to post the name of this site. (Yet).

Why?

Is it because of that old bugbear rejection? Is it easier to share it here because the blogosphere seems safer and I can remain as anonymous or not as I wish to be? Is it because I’ve planned to write about those people I know and don’t want to run into trouble with them later on down the line?!

I consider it a risk and an uncontrollable one to tell more friends about the existence of this site. As someone who was bullied I am still to this day very conscious about how I come across to others. Anything that is potentially ‘extreme’ – a talking point basically – about my personality or appearance gets watered way down until I am sure that I am around people who will accept me. I wouldn’t go so far as to say I have crafted certain personalities around different groups of friends – else what would be the point of calling them friends – but I do tend to keep myself on the edges and hold back from saying anything that might be used against me should someone wish to.

I would also say that here in the blogosphere I have been rather more forthcoming than I may have been in real life on a number of subjects. I can count on one hand the number of friends who know I write, for example.

So there’s the risk of sharing this blog with my friends and revealing a little too much of myself. If that resonates with you, let me know.

It is a shame because I know of friends who would visit and who would read what I have to say with interest. I wonder if the friend here in Ireland that I did share the site with was only ‘chosen’ because I know blogging isn’t really his thing and he’d rarely read the posts unless challenged by me to do so. My partner’s first language isn’t English – is that why I’ve let him in on the secret?

And my family?

Not one of them know that when I say I have something to do it is this. I just don’t feel ready to share what I have done with them yet and I don’t, honestly, know quite how I feel about that.

It kind of makes my opening gambit about being proud of what this blog is a bit questionable doesn’t it?

43 Comments

  1. I have shared with friends and family about my blog. Some follow it, some don’t. I am careful about what I share because I know that some members of my family read it. And as far as promotion goes….I think it is about readers, not followers. I have seen sites that had thousands of followers and only a few likes on posts and a few comments. That tells me the followers are not really following or reading. Give me a reader anytime over a follower that doesn’t really follow.

    Liked by 4 people

    1. One hundred percent. When I started off I wondered how on earth people get to 4,000 followers but I really do think now that it is about quality and there is so much of a kick out of knowing that you are being read, really read, rather than just liked. We all want to be heard more than we want to be liked – this applies to life as well as blogging I think.

      Liked by 3 people

  2. That’s all cool (imo). You could indeed set the blog to ‘private’ and your secret is safe forever 🙂 We all blog for different reasons and clearly you are happier opening up to people you don’t know personally. That’s fine – it might change, it might not. Other people feed off ‘likes’ and ‘comments’ and that’s ok too. There are no rules. Blog on, you’re always very readable.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Hey thanks Roy! That’s really nice 🙂 The thing is I feel a lot like this experience is helping me to cultivate a more positive attitude towards “failure” and disappointment and to take what I have produced a lot less personally, if that makes sense. It is what it is and whether or not people like it, it’s unrelated to whether or not they like me. Did you promote your blog through social media at all?

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Agree totally about people reading/liking your blog or not. Most of my readers I don’t know personally and I’m not really bothered if friends or family read it. I wouldn’t write about them anyway, or let them know my darkest secrets 🙂

        I ‘share’ my blog postings to Twitter and FB but then forget about it. I’ve been blogging since the dawn of blogs and I guess it’s more of a personal diary than any form of self-promotion. I just love writing.

        Liked by 2 people

  3. 🙂 In my case, I am not ashamed to let anyone know that I blog.

    And, as a rule, I do not post anything on my blog that I am unable to live with.

    In regards to Facebook, it is only beneficial to the user who pays their money to boost their posts. I deleted my Facebook account because I genuinely believe that it is a waste of my time.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. I didn’t know that about Facebook. I was going to set up a special Instagram account for my blog – and I got so far as registering one – but then I just couldn’t bring myself to go through with it. I didn’t feel comfortable and can’t really understand why.

      Your rule is a good one and of course you shouldn’t be ashamed of letting people know you blog. I think it’s me overthinking as usual that has stopped me!!

      Thanks for always supporting and for commenting on this post. I appreciate your insight 🙂

      Liked by 2 people

  4. Great post! In many ways, I feel the same way. People I thought would be interested in my blog are simply polite. When I used to promote each new blog post on Facebook, I’d get likes, but of course, we can see the metrics and see that they didn’t really click through and read the post. As for sharing your blog with your family, you’ll be ready when you say you’re ready. Continue producing great content and the readers will find you and engage. It does hurt when the people you expect to support you aren’t really coming through. That’s OK. It could just be that since they’re not writers/bloggers themselves, that they simply don’t understand this world. That’s OK, too. Perhaps they don’t want to see others succeed. Sorry to be blunt, but it’s possible. Just want to end by saying: this post resonated with me. Thanks for sharing! Keep going 👍🏼

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Darlene thank you so much for your comment. It is always wonderful when someone takes the time to write back and especially when I hear that something has resonated with someone. It is what makes this blogosphere so engaging and, for me so far, so supportive and helpful.

      I know what you mean about Facebook and the click through rate. There really is no getting away from it – you end up seeing very clearly if people do visit your site or not and that in turn makes the sense of rejection or whatever harder to avoid. Did you stop promoting on social media altogether? Has it made any difference to how you feel about your readers at all?

      Liked by 1 person

      1. On January 1, I signed up for Instagram, but I haven’t posted anything yet. I promote on Twitter sometimes. I no longer promote on Facebook.

        I appreciate everyone who reads my posts (whether or not they engage), so I decided that, instead of likes, I would seek genuine connection. I figure the best way I could achieve that would be to focus my energy on writing, improving my writing, and reading more blogs!

        Liked by 1 person

  5. Not many know about my blog either. I just feel like I don’t want to share this part of me with people who know me. Confiding in strangers about a lot of my feelings, feels more comforting sometimes. It’s weird but true for me.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Me too and the people who take time to read what others have put thought into, and comment, I think have genuinely good intentions and want to see others do well. There is a lot of support out there and I guess this doesn’t always translate in the “real” world.

      Liked by 2 people

  6. I absolutely understand where you’re coming from with this. Most of my friends, family, and coworkers know I write and blog. When I talked about it in theory, everyone was, like, practically in awe of me and couldn’t say enough about how cool they thought it was.
    But then when I started getting serious about writing and blogging regularly, most of them looked at me like I was 100% insane.
    I do share my posts on my Facebook writer page, and sometimes link certain posts to my personal FB page, but hardly anyone I know personally seems to notice or care.
    It hurt a lot at first, and still does sometimes, but I’m becoming more immune to it. They don’t “get it” and that’s not a personal reflection of me or our relationship.
    Plus it means I don’t have to be paranoid that I’m going to write something that someone close to me gets all up in arms about LOL

    Liked by 4 people

    1. It is amazing to me that so many of us are in the same boat when it comes to sharing our blogging with others, especially people close to us like family or friends. I hope I can get to your stage of immunity because right now I just feel scared to be so open about writing. You’re right I think: people do tend to accept writing as a hobby but anything more serious and it is seen as something that won’t pay the bills or won’t work out and that can be very hard to take. I just feel lucky that when I look at the blogs I enjoy reading they are full of people doing what makes them happy regardless of anyone else and their perceptions! We should be proud of ourselves 🙂

      Liked by 2 people

  7. Oh believe me, I’m mum about my blog to my family as well. Idk about yours, but mine’s tend to suck the joy out of everything: they take my sarcastic jokes literally; anything longer than a Facebook or Instagram post is “too long” and “opinionative,” and they think of writing as a hobby- not an honest way to make a living so they never take me seriously anyhow.

    I think it’s normal to want to keep our blogs secret from our families. Family can be brutal and overbearing, and it’s nice to have something that’s “yours” that can’t be taken apart by anyone. What’s worse is finding the courage TO share it with them, and they don’t bother to read. (I shared my posts to my cousins once and when I asked what they liked about it, they mumbled and stared at the ground. It was awkward and heartbreaking.)

    Now I keep my blog to myself and I wound up finding a family here anyhow. Cheesy, but it’s true. I wouldn’t trade the blogging community for a few clicks from my uninitiated family, ever.

    I hope this doesn’t make me sound like I hate them. I generally love my family. But as far as constructive opinions and an audience, I go elsewhere.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. I don’t think it is cheesy at all to say that you can find a family in the blogosphere. I find that way too. Wherever there is shared passions or interests there will always follow the sense of connectedness which is so often missing in our so-called “real” families.

      I really never share any of my writing with my family and I mean that of writing I’ve done that isn’t my blog. I guess we sometimes expect our family to be one hundred percent with us at all times and in everything we do or feel passionate about and the reality is they are ultimately their own selves, with interests and likes or dislikes that very often run counter to our own. The love that binds families together however is what makes this hard to take – especially if they reject what we’ve done because it feels – to me at least – like they are rejecting me. I’m learning to take it less and less personally and I hope I will be able to share more with the people I care about: family and friends!

      Thank you so much for your comment 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  8. I don’t have social media either because it felt too invasive of my privacy, so I get why you don’t have Facebook. I don’t like pushing and “promoting” my blog get either, and maybe never will? I also understand why you don’t want to share with others, it puts a little more pressure on you to filter yourself out flit this is the place you have created to feel like yourself without restraint. Blogging reasons are so personal and you do what feels best for you, it doesn’t matter if they know or not because you’re spending time doing something that makes you feel good.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Yes, you’ve said exactly what I mean: to filter myself out. That’s exactly how I feel and it certainly seems that a lot of others feel the same. Did you ever have social media or did you give it up recently? I find that I can give up Instagram but I do experience the old FOMO especially in the summer when you want to see what everyone is doing on their break. As for promoting your blog, I know what you mean ABSOLUTELY.

      Liked by 2 people

      1. Yes I used to have FB for about six years, and realized that it felt like I was spending time on something that didn’t make me feel happy. I switched over to IG and had it off and on for a few years and the same thing happened. The longer I don’t have it, the more I realize that the natural flow of life is to not stay in contact with every person I’ve known. It’s not wrong for other to want to stay in contact, but for me, I like more intimate and close relationships and felt like it was lacking on social media. I enjoy not having any, but I know it’s different for everyone!

        Liked by 2 people

      2. Haha your comment about it not being natural to stay in contact with literally everyone you’ve ever known made me laugh because it’s so true. I hadn’t thought about it like that but really it is like carrying around a weight of contacts isn’t it? I’ve just come to believe that the people who are meant to be in your life at any given time will be there, and you will be in theirs.

        Liked by 1 person

      3. Haha! 😆 it is funny huh? I used to think staying up to date with everyone I knew in high school and even childhood made my life better, but it’s actually the opposite haha! I like keeping the good ones in my personal life and moving forward.

        Liked by 2 people

  9. Hi, only a handful of friends are into my blog, and that is fine. All friends know about it, but no family, except my husband. Most of the people who are most engaged are people I’ve never met.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thanks for your comment! Do your family or close friends know you write a blog? I’ve come close since posting this to telling them but I can’t quite make myself do it!! 🙂

      Like

  10. I was coming to comment that I understand this completely. Imagine my surprise when I see how many people have come to comment the same!
    Speaking the truth, I have been blogging almost 4 years now and I have just this year told about 5 people I know about it. I think my biggest issue with telling people was that I wanted to know that I had failed or succeeded on my own. That my numbers weren’t just friends/family trying to help me out, but actually organic growth and real people who were actually interested in what I have to say. Then, comes the bit about being embarrassed, or not wanting to share that part of yourself, or being judged. Just wait until you feel comfortable with telling them. You will know when the time is right for YOU. And really, that’s all that matters.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hey Mliae, I felt exactly the same way as you when I saw the reaction in the comments to that post!! I couldn’t believe how many of us are sharing such a similar experience. I also totally get what you mean about your readership and wanting those number to reflect something genuine, as you saw it. I have felt similarly too. For the moment I have also kept it from most close family members and friends and, largely because of these comments and the support here, I know that if and when I decide to share it that will be totally fine. My blog, my choice! We could hashtag that 😉 Thanks for following 🙂

      Like

  11. Well I guess I’m not the only one!! I was researching if there are many other bloggers out there who keep their site a secret from friends and family and I found you!! It’s not very common, but perhaps it is and no one writes about it! I’m working on a post about my reasons why… mostly fear. Fear of what they’ll think or they’ll judge it. I was a published magazine and news writer for 10 years so it wouldn’t be shocking to them. But, ‘blogging’ has a misconception. You know what I mean? Anyway, great post and I totally relate and now u have a new follower:)
    xoxo

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hello! Thank you so much your comment and taking the time to respond. I was amazed when I published that post how many people seemed to feel similar: I really had thought it was just me! Blogging does have a misconception and I still haven’t told those closest to me that I do it. I will check out your site too. Have you actually gotten around to telling people or is it still a secret? Thanks again for your comment 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I haven’t yet 😂 but I’m getting ready to!! Maybe next month… I’ll post about the reveal on the blog so everyone knows how it went 😂 I’m sure I’ll get some eye rolls and some secretly hoping I fail but I’ll also get plenty of love and support 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

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