After some thought and prayer, I believe this post needs to be written for those who are reading our stories, as well as for future brothers who want to write their own blogs. I aim not to come off as offensive, but instead as someone who wants to challenge us all to renew our thinking in writing about hurtful things in our past.
After my last post, I was thinking about how all of us, the authors, are sharing our stories about growing up, coming to grips with our sexuality, and somehow working it within our faith and horrible past hurts which sometimes can be overwhelming! It can be overwhelming, because we’re digging deep into our psyche and bringing out what makes us us! We’re tapping into something that sometimes we don’t ever want to experience again, like emotional hurt, physical pain, and spiritual depression.
While we’re writing our stories, sometimes we, the writers, can get into this funk. We might be writing about something and automatically dive into this depression mode. It’s like, “Oh, I’m gonna write, I better prepare my emotions before I write another sad story, so that my audience knows that I’m really sad while writing this!”
But there are times when we do write our stories, and we’ve been through a lot, but we don’t want to be judged because of it. Of how bad our lives got in the past or present. So, we get kind of vague with our writing and don’t want to put ourselves out there, only to get rejected by it and having it get thrown back in our faces.
Trust me, not all of us do this, but it can happen from time to time. I know I’ve been there during my Xanga blogging days!
I used to think that the sadder and more vague I got, the more people would feel sorry for me, and the more views, likes, and comments I would get. Though when I was actually doing the “sad writing” thing, not wanting to feel rejected, I was trying to meet this unattainable need of attention!
But then there’s the other side of the coin when it comes to talking about pity parties. Yes, we’re being vulnerable when telling our stories, which can project on to you guys, the readers, and you guys are allowed to sympathize or empathize with us.
Yet, we don’t want you guys to get in this mood too — where once you read our stories, you feel sorry for us all the time. Like every story or every post just gets you down, and then you start feeling like crap.
It can be equally dangerous to be in this mindset of going, “Oh, another sad story, I’ll skip this one cuz it’s the same tune like the rest!” Again, I know! I’ve been on the other side of the computer reading different blog posts others have written on various sites.
Here’s the thing: we don’t ever want to be in these positions and put you guys in this position too! All we’re trying to do is tell our stories.
Yes, there are some of us who need time to open up, who need to find ourselves through our blogs. For some, it’s the first time we’ve ever done this! It’s ok to start from a point of fear and insecurity.
If you’re fearful of being rejected, it’s ok to be honest about that! Let that be your starting point, but don’t stay there. Challenge yourself daily, or little by little, to overcome that insecurity in your life, the fear of rejection, and comparison to others.
On the other hand, there are others (like me!) who are naturals at telling our stories, because we’ve already overcome a lot of stuff in our lives. Through our struggle, we have found our voice and our purpose, and we’re comfortable whenever opening up whatever part of our lives we want to talk about.
For myself, it’s a privilege to share my life stories with you guys, whoever is reading. I get to be authentic in my writing, having the assurance that all the crap I’ve dealt with will be beneficial in the end because someone else is probably dealing with it right now, and they need to know they are loved, and they’re not alone.
It brings me joy to actually tell you guys both the good stuff and not-so-good stuff in my life.
So for my stories, don’t ever pity them or pity me. I WANT to do this! I’m always excited to write something new for you guys, even if it’s one of the uglier parts of my life. I will fight you if you ever feel sorry for me!
“We can rejoice, too, when we run into problems and trials, for we know that they help us develop endurance. And endurance develops strength of character, and character strengthens our confident hope of salvation. And this hope will not lead to disappointment. for we know how dearly God loves us, because he has given us the Holy Spirit to fill our hearts with his love.” Romans 5: 3-5 (NLT)
Do you tend to take pity on others or empathize with them as one? How do you find the balance of telling the sad/ugly stories from your life as well as the redemptive ones?
* Photo courtesy rayterrill, Creative Commons.