“How can you share everything from your life to The Internet?”
This is a question I’ve been getting asked since 2003. I give the exact same answer I gave before blog ads existed, conferences were popular or marketing pitches went out en mass: “I don’t.”
There is a vast difference between sharing all your personal information and sharing fun, personal stories. Believe it or not, most bloggers still filter their content. As personal as the stories I have shared throughout my time online, there are many details of my life nobody knows except those involved.
It’s a false sense of closeness you’ll get from reading someone’s blog. You might feel that you understand them entirely, could be best friends, have the EXACT SAME thoughts. The wonderful truth is that you might have or be all those things, but you can only find that out by experiencing a true friendship. In the past few weeks I’ve reached out to many of the wonderful women I’ve met online. They have shared snippets of their lives and I know them well enough to understand the bigger picture that lies underneath. The amazing fact is that if you ask, offline, off record, in earnest, you can share things so much more intimate than what The Internet can ever know. “I had no idea,” a friend might breathe over IM. “I didn’t realize,” you might whisper when you read an email in return.
Many of us blog because we love to write and express ourselves best in this medium. Many of us find it therapeutic to work out the inner ideals we’re unsure of here on this screen where others can help guide or encourage the enlightenment. This form of communication, while cathartic, is still limiting.
So it is that The Internet may not know everything. There are times when a piece of paper and a pen still remain the most valuable psychotherapist. There are no indexes, no “way back machine”, no SEO meta tags. Pure thought, unfiltered, raw; one day I may even share those stories with someone as well. Perhaps.