For a long time, I actually avoided participating in social media in any way. I’ve always had strong opinions on the way social media is influencing modern society. But I’ve also come to realize that it is a very integral part of life nowadays, so I need to get over myself and join the rest of the world in the global village.
One of the key reasons I started Nappy Head Chronicles was that I wanted to be part of a community, trading and sharing. Just the other day, vinegarandwater spoke about that very subject on her blog. I was starting to feel like the community thing was taking shape for me.
Don’t Drop Your Seed Everywhere
As a relatively new blogger, I have been treading quite gingerly when it comes to discussions and commenting. I’ve tried to choose carefully where to leave my stamp and I’ve tried to make intelligent observations or ask relevant questions. Sometimes, I’ve thrown in a joke or two. The feedback has been very positive on my own blog and in the various discussions I’ve participated in on other blogs.
All in all, it has been a very good experience… until today.
No Good Deed Goes Unpunished
Someone in the blogasphere posted about how her mother seemed unsupportive of her decision to become natural and was always trying to get her to “do something” with her hair. I made the mistake of commenting on her post. I thought I was being witty and supportive.
Turns out that I was not. At least not in that particular blogger’s opinion.
She was quite hostile in telling me that she wasn’t sure whether or not I was being snarky and condescending but that she was choosing to believe the worst. She went on to give me quite the tongue-lashing (or the blog equivalent as such). She informed me that she doesn’t carry the burden of all black women, and that her post was not whining or a need to cheer up. She also pointed out that she trusts no one and that I don’t know her or her mother.
I was put in my place.
So What Was the Lesson Here?
Everyone comes into your life as either a blessing or a lesson. In this case, the lesson IS the blessing.
The lesson — the best laid plans really do often go awry. No matter how good your intentions are, everyone will not always be delighted by what you have to say. Not all bloggers are created equal. Just because they choose to share their thoughts and feelings on a miriad of subjects in such a public way, it doesn’t mean that they want or care about your opinion.
“This is what I have to say. Read it, but keep your thoughts to yourself.”
It took me a minute to get over the shock at this blogger’s utter cynicism. Then I just felt sad. Sad that my words had had negative impact on someone. Sad that sharing my own experience did not comfort her. Sad that whatever was going on in her world had hardened her so much. The good news is that I’m over it. I’m not so jaded by life that I can’t see silver linings, half-full glasses, or any goodness anywhere at all.
Angry Blog Woman is quite right. I don’t know her.
And after this, I don’t think I want to know her.
How have you dealt with negative feedback on your blog, on other blogs, or in any other forums?