Finding Ninee » Sharing our parenting and special needs stories with heart and humor.

Why Do Bloggers Share So Much Online?

“Oh, so…you’re talking about one of your blog friends then?” Blog, drawn out to sound more like “blaaagh.”

“Well, yeah, but I know her really well,” I said. “We’re for-real friends.” I refrain from saying that we’ve been through a lot together because we’ve never been through anything together in person, and I don’t want to sound even weirder. 

“But you’ve never even actually met each other,” she said. Incredulous, pitying. I imagine she’s thinking “Why do bloggers share so much online?” but don’t ask. 

“I know it’s weird,” I replied, sad that writing lets me share more than I can with her at the playground, and sad for all of my in-real-life relationships. The friends I haven’t seen in too long. When we do get together, there’s never enough time.

why do bloggers share so much online? this mom tried to explain the friendships and connections

***

A few of us decided it’d be fun to meet at a playground and spend some mom-time together. Get to know one another better. Playgrounds are navigated more easily when there’s another mom to talk to, especially when there’s one who accepts our kids the way they are. Even more especially back when they were so young and their issues were more confusing and we didn’t really know how they may develop or who they may become.

We chose a day and a playground, and are each excited and maybe a little nervous. We claim a picnic table, fill it with sippie cups, snacks, wipes, and hand sanitizer while the semi-trucks that our car trunks have become wait behind us in case we need to retrieve an extra pair of pants, a stroller, an umbrella, more water, more snacks, or something resembling our own type of previously-known sanity.

“Let’s let them play,” and kids play, and we let them, at least enough. They chase and ignore and are fenced in at this particular playground so that not watching each and every second starts to feel okay. We take turns looking around, locating our own. Seeing this mirrored in others helps us to further relax. While it’s not the same as my generation’s parents who let us run feral on the streets until dark each night, it feels right. Empowered, because having the other mamas there who are more talking than watching helps us to breathe. 

We chat about what we’ve been up to between the multiple requests, and taking turns answering to “Mommy, watch this!” and “You forgot to look” and tears and chase and an occasional toddler smack-down in a war over sharing cheddar bunnies.

We find moments to laugh within, to talk about getting coffee or a snack soon, and field more tears, and lost coats and “Didn’t you come here with shoes??” We giggle and don’t bother looking for socks and find a coat that’s wet with the unknown because it’s not actually wet anywhere on the playground that we know of, and we bond, smile, and are in this together. We share snacks, offer ours when some are dropped in the dirt, and want to do it again while also wondering what we’ll do for the next five hours.

Suddenly and finally, it’s time to leave. The kids are done; we’re done and looking back, if there was one meaningful “It’s okay to grieve the kid you thought you’d have” sentence exchanged, it was a prolific day. The fact a few of us managed to get together at the same time at the same playground (because I’ve gone to the wrong one on the right day and the right one on the wrong day) was prolific enough.

***

Writers overshare and undershare. It’s how we’re wired. We write about the innermost and the scariest most. We have to write it, to process it. We want to get it out.

I want to mention that we cannot do so on-demand and if somebody were to say “oh just go on and write about what it feels like to be a special needs mom,” we’d hide in a closet for a few hours, say “I can’t,” and then draw stupid-looking pictures about being writers and shaving cats. Sometimes, we use aliens to help us figure out how to say that we wish we were younger but are too afraid to actually take a for-real wish because what if Now changed? Now changing wouldn’t be okay. We wouldn’t probably actually write about what you thought you’d want to read because it doesn’t work that way which can be sucky and weird but it is, as most things are, what it is. And here we are, drawn over and over again to sharing online, because we must and that is enough. 

***

When it comes to sharing online… When I started this website three+ years ago now, I needed to talk and to ask and to ask again and to share what was going on with my little boy because “hey wait, your little boy does that too??” I got some of that from the playground but the thing about playground talk is that playgrounds are interrupted by kids being there. Demands for snacks and sweat-wiping and the need to referee a toddler smack-down gets in the way of actual talk.

Sharing online? Writing? For writers, writing is dumping for-real thoughts out there because we have to. Want to.

We don’t know – except through confusing stats and views and shares whether your face is behind this screen, and, if it is, we don’t know if it’s full of incredulousness, pity, amusement, or out there, nodding, smiling, and thinking “me too.” Unless you decide to tell us with a “no thanks.”

Personally, I like “me too” better as that’s what makes us all less alone being human, raising ourselves, and raising our kids who just happen to have some atypical needs.

***

kristi rieger campbell finished post for finding ninee

This has been a Finish the Sentence Friday post. This week’s sentence is “When it comes to sharing online…” and your host is moi from Finding Ninee.

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  • Nicki - Me too.
    <3April 28, 2016 – 10:20 pmReplyCancel

  • It Walters - I think it is an artist thing not limited to writers. I think artists are in so much pain and art is the way they let it out.

    All of us reveal more than we would like.April 28, 2016 – 10:30 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Maybe you’re right JT. Although I hate to think all artists are in pain…April 29, 2016 – 8:58 pmReplyCancel

      • JT Walters - I think there can not be growth without pain? I could be wrong but I think we learn more from failure than success. Pain teaches us but the artist understands this and channels it through their art making them better able to endure more pain hence growing even more?

        I could be totally wrong. Creating Art is comforting unless you are under a dead line or are forced to do it.

        I know painting changed the way I saw the world and helped me endure and cope through my Mother’s end stage cancer when I couldn’t speak. Art is how one heals from pain, IMO!April 29, 2016 – 10:56 pmReplyCancel

  • Josie Two Shoes - For me, the “me too” experience is what fueled my initial blogging efforts and brought me into a world-wide family of “my people” that I never new or dreamed existed when I once felt so very isolated and alone. I can be anywhere, sitting in a closet, on a lake shore, or in my pajamas in front of the TV, and still I can share my thoughts and feelings and a bit about life where I’m at inside and out, and inevitably someone will show up to say “me to”. Those who don’t blog will never truly understand how we could say bloggers are our “real” friends, but oh yes, my dear, they are far more real than those I encounter every day might ever be, because with them I can truly be all me.April 28, 2016 – 10:51 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Oh wow, I’m so glad that you found your “me too” people when you once felt isolated and alone… So much. And yes, we are so real, because it’s not like talking about the weather when we are wondering whether we’re going through menopause or something!! That stuff can only be shared in writing. Or, on a wine night with friends which is harder to organize for sure.April 29, 2016 – 9:52 pmReplyCancel

  • Janine Huldie - You summed this up perfectly and you are so right as it is honestly about the “Me too” here, as well and still always nice to know I am most definitely not alone. So thank you for that and so much more always, KristiApril 29, 2016 – 2:22 amReplyCancel

  • A Morning Grouch - LOVE this. (Me too!!)April 29, 2016 – 2:41 amReplyCancel

  • Dana Dominey Campbell - Loved typing with you the other day and we’ve certainly never met. We can give each other hope, empathy, and share joy!April 29, 2016 – 4:48 amReplyCancel

  • Deirdre Conran - So loving this. Man, I wish I’d written some of this stuff too. I went in a totally different direction this week, but you nailed it, as always! Thank you and hey, “me too”! We do share so much because we just have to. Thank you for being awesome.April 29, 2016 – 6:07 amReplyCancel

  • Allie - It is such a funny phenomena, bogging friendships. I was explaining to Rich how I switchef our hotel, so it would be (hopefully) easier for you to come visit. And he’s was all, have you even met this person before? Yes, dear;). Non-bloggers just don’t get it, we are a special tribe.April 29, 2016 – 9:41 amReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - OMG YOU Switched your hotel? I’d come to you anyway you know, but yeah, I get that… love the “yes dear.” 🙂 My husband doesn’t even ask any longer!April 29, 2016 – 10:30 pmReplyCancel

  • Sandra - Well my youngest is almost 13 (GAH! )so I’m well past the playground years, but I’m definitely a “me too”….and I smile, chuckle, lol, and nod. And where can I get some cheddar bunnies?April 29, 2016 – 11:45 amReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Dude, Cheddar Bunnies are the bomb. They’re like the organic version (and better tasting more cheddar) of goldfish? Whole Foods or Harris Teeter. Do you have those???April 29, 2016 – 11:13 pmReplyCancel

  • Christine Carter - Oh Kristi! I love this SO much. I have had THOSE SAME conversations with my ‘real life’ friends here. I actually got into an intense argument with my sister recently over her questioning the authenticity of my online friends. Let’s just say I won. lol

    I was JUST thinking about this very thing late last night, when I realized that there are more chunks of my life valued online than in real life these days. And I’m absolutely okay with that. I still *have* a life outside the web, but there is a growing love for my online friends that often supersedes it.

    Your playdate with your friends- PERFECT description. I remember those days, and all the busy kid-watching, juggling, and connecting with other moms that can occur. I’m so glad you were able to do it.April 29, 2016 – 12:18 pmReplyCancel

  • Tamara - haha, I got caught up looking at my own thumbnail. I was like, “Oooh, pretty picture. Who took it?”
    Um.. yeah. Me.
    Moving on, that was my oversharing for you. I impressed myself for once.
    You nailed this, though. Blogging friendships fascinate the heck out of me.April 29, 2016 – 1:45 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - LOL to you staring at a pic of your nail? Did I get that right? LOL and you impress me all the time, which is another part of blogging – that we can say that when it would be hard in person. Thanks, you.April 29, 2016 – 11:15 pmReplyCancel

  • Kenya G. Johnson - Dang I wanted to say “you nailed it” but I see Tamara just said that. It’s also amazing how we all can be so different and relate so well.

    The beginning of this post made me laugh. Each time a person questions your relationship with a blogger it’s like you shrink a little inside. They don’t get it yet we are the ones that have to defend it.

    And please by all means get drawing! They are fun and funny, not stupid at all.April 29, 2016 – 2:25 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Thanks, Kenya, and yeah, I want to get back to the drawing, so much, and had one for this maybe but time… and life, and the why, but yes. And thank you HUGE for saying I nailed it. I deleted 1,000 words before publishing and the thing about being the host is that I have to at 10pm, which I think I need, really. If that makes sense.April 29, 2016 – 11:24 pmReplyCancel

  • Jack - Writers overshare and undershare. It’s how we’re wired. We write about the innermost and the scariest most. We have to write it, to process it. We want to get it out.

    That is perfection.April 29, 2016 – 4:35 pmReplyCancel

  • Dana - So often I read and think, “Me too!” Sometimes I read and think, “I didn’t know it was like that for her.” And because of sharing online, now I do. I know so much more about the world and the unique people in it, because of bloggers who share.April 29, 2016 – 6:37 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - I think the “I didn’t know it was like that for her” is almost better or as much so as “me too,” because yeah, writers know so much more about each other than is possible on a playground, or at a school function…April 29, 2016 – 11:27 pmReplyCancel

  • Emily - I’ve taken several online memoir-writing workshops and the teacher pointed out that the online format works well, especially for people writing memoirs, who are often sharing very personal, soul-baring stories. Without the face-to-face intimidation of an in-person writing class, the online class seems to allow and even encourage more honesty and openness. And through that class, I came to know several writers via their stories and many of us are still in touch online, long after our class ended…So, I think blogging offers a similar advantage and helps you create your own community. I think I didn’t really add new thoughts to anything you just wrote about, but I guess I just wanted to say, “yes, I get it!”April 30, 2016 – 9:40 amReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - You know, that makes sense actually about being more anonymous. Because it’s definitely true that I can type things in my little office that I’d NEVER be able to say on a playground (unless I was drinking or something). YAY for getting it. Yay for knowing you.April 30, 2016 – 7:54 pmReplyCancel

  • Mardra Sikora - I feel very lucky to have found so many wonderful people via blogging. I’ve only recently had the chance to meet some of these folks “in real life” and everytime it’s like we are old friends, kicking in. I am very happy ot have met you and all of your clan, too!April 30, 2016 – 5:38 pmReplyCancel

  • My Inner Chick - The bloggers/writers I gravitate towards are those who
    are honest & authentic & raw.

    I don’t know if they overshare,
    but if they are writing something I identify with, I typically love them.

    I’m like, “YEAH, I get it! I’m not crazy after all!”

    I like that.

    xxxMay 1, 2016 – 6:38 pmReplyCancel

  • Diane Hite Weidenbenner - There’s something about the blogging community that allows a safe space to share, and learn that others are struggling with similar things. I think bloggers have awesome hearts. I’ve enjoyed your blogs and hope to participate in the Finish the Sentence Friday group. Just finished the A to Z Challenge and hope to continue the momentum. I blog at http://www.dianeweidenbenner.comMay 1, 2016 – 8:44 pmReplyCancel

  • Lisa @ Golden Spoons - Sigh. Writing is so much better than playground paydays – most of the time, anyway.May 2, 2016 – 8:32 pmReplyCancel

  • Rabia @TheLiebers - I’ve found so much camaraderie online. My husband’s work doesn’t allow much time for me to go out and do friend things. I’ve gotten used to working around his non-traditional schedule and thankfully found a few local friends in the same boat, but online is where I can really find like-minded people. Those to whom I can say, “Your kid does that too?”May 3, 2016 – 1:32 pmReplyCancel

  • Kristi Campbell - I love the “your kid does that too!” moments because wow, sometimes its just plain old isolating. And I’m glad you’ve got such an amazing community online and that you’re part of mine!!May 5, 2016 – 6:41 pmReplyCancel

  • Roshni AaMom - Not to mention that it’s sometimes easier to ‘talk’ without feeling someone’s eyes on you, judging or pitying. And,somehow you know that bloggers being writers will just get you better than any IRL friend who’s not!May 11, 2016 – 4:19 amReplyCancel

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