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12 In writing challenge

november writing challenge | day 18 | bothering me


“What is bothering you?”

There are a few things that have irked me a little recently, funnily enough all surrounding the internet and social media in some way. Surprise surprise!

Comments about the ‘fakery’ of blogging have cropped up a few times lately, I’ve noticed.  Comments that blogs only show a fantasy life, not reality, and that people portray inaccurate images of themselves.  That there’s something wrong with staging a cutesy Instagram shot, ‘because that’s not real life!‘.  Of course not every tiny detail is shared on blogs… gotta be selective, right?  People sometimes complain that blogs only show the nicey nicey stuff, and that the crap that everybody unfortunately has in some way or other is conveniently left out.  The ‘perfect life’ image, if you will.  Not only is this not always the case (loads of bloggers do talk about their bad times in one way or another), but it really doesn’t mean that bloggers are fakes.  Of course not everything is gonna be shared on the internet: there’s no reason why anyone should feel obliged to do so.  Keeping the ‘negative’ stuff quiet and only posting about happier things doesn’t make anyone a fraud.

Alongside these comments, I’ve also heard non-bloggers complaining that blogging is easy, without realising that it’s all the meticulous care and behind the scenes work that make it bloody hard.  Yes, that #ootd might not have been quite what the blogger wore that day, yes those notebooks and coffee cups might not have arranged themselves so neatly.  Obviously I’m no professional blogger myself, so I’m really just defending those who are receiving these comments.  The annoying part – for me – is that you can’t on the one hand whinge that blogging is easy, and on the other hand say it’s fake and should be more ‘real’.  Artistic license, people!  We read blogs for fun, so it’s nice to be able to (most of the time) read about nice things.  At least I do anyway: I obviously like to keep it real, but a blog with non-stop complaining and negativity wouldn’t really appeal to me.  Maybe that’s just me.

In a similar kind of way, it really bugs me to see people taking the mick out of others, purely for being so positive.  This extends outside the blogosphere for sure:  I’ve seen facebook status’ with screenshots poking fun at people for sharing what they enjoy online, because it’s not cool to know what you’re talking about!  Or something like that, anyway.  Why the need to be negative about being positive?  Baffles me.

And then there’s the other side of the coin.

One of the most recent internet controversies has surrounded the ‘bloggers and mental health’ idea.  Katie wrote an amazing post on the topic here that I’d really recommend reading, so I’m no way gonna try discussing the whole thing.  Before reading her post, I’d noticed that many bloggers/youtubers/internet people do say they struggle with mental health in some way or other, with anxiety as the term I’ve seen most often.  There’s absolutely no way I’m gonna belittle any of these experiences, or deny that mental health is a serious issue that millions face every day.  Of course it is.  I have seen the effects of mental health on people around me, but have no personal experience of social anxiety, depression or any other mental battle in that way.  However, the relationship between the online world and mental health has made me think.  Once or twice I’ve felt in the minority in blogger chats for saying that I wouldn’t feel shy or nervous at an event, for example, which I (sort of) posted about here. I feel bad for saying that it wouldn’t bother me, when understandably others are saying it would.

Now this isn’t something that annoy me per se, so maybe this isn’t the right post, but rather it’s something I’ve felt a little unsure about, shall we say.  It’s really difficult to explain what I mean!

I’m not saying that people are jumping on the bandwagon, or denying the truth in what anybody says they feel at all.  Obviously it’s a good thing that issues can be talked about, as awareness is raised and more and more support can be given.  Good all round.  I just can’t help but feel that blogging and anxiety especially are seen kinda hand in hand at the moment, and that bloggers who don’t suffer from mental health are sometimes seen as less ‘real’, for want of a better word.  Like Katie said, big brands creating products with slogans like ‘I can’t keep calm, I have an anxiety disorder’, and the general publicity surrounding mental health at the minute, makes it seem like it isn’t ‘cool’ to be mentally OK.  Yeah, that does bother me.  From my perspective, but more for the genuine sufferers caught up in this idea that it’s edgy to be damaged. I don’t like that idea one bit.

Oh, the joys of the internet!

Rant over. 🙂

lily kate x
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  • Reply
    19th November 2014 at 6:10 pm

    Great post. Hits some good points on the blogging world.


    • Reply
      lily kate
      19th November 2014 at 6:21 pm

      Thank you!

  • Reply
    19th November 2014 at 6:31 pm

    interesting post, I have seen some negative tweets about bloggers/youtubers and mental health issues. I think if someone is willing to share their experience we shouldn’t doubt it. for everyone that speaks out there are still so many that don’t. great post x oh the joys of the internet… indeed! lolx

    • Reply
      lily kate
      20th November 2014 at 9:51 pm

      Thanks Christina! I think it’s incredibly brave of them to share their experiences and I really do admire them. But yes, the internet always has its pitfalls!

  • Reply
    19th November 2014 at 7:01 pm

    I think the thing with mental illness is that a lot of people self diagnose. Lot’s of people go through periods in their lives where they feel stress, or might feel nervous about something, but that’s different than suffering from anxiety to the point where you have to be medicated for it. There’s been times in my life where I’ve had panic attacks in the past and I feel nervous meeting new people, but I don’t think of myself as someone with an anxiety disorder, I think I’m just a normal person that’s had a couple of rough patches in life. I’m awkward around new people. Lot’s of people self diagnose mental illness. It doesn’t help that if you were to read the description of someone with almost any mental/personality disorder, it can describe most people in at least some aspects!

    It’s a bit annoying when people say about bloggers being fake. The way I see it is that I don’t say things on my blog that I wouldn’t want my work colleagues to know about.

    I wouldn’t go to work telling all my staff if I feel depressed or was going through a breakup, so why would I announce it on my blog? For me, it’s not about hiding the truth, it’s about only sharing with the world what I want to share with the world and keeping my private life private. Owning a blog doesn’t mean anyone owes it to their audience to share every little detail.

    I managed to work out this morning. My alarm went off at 4:45am. Help! You’re totally my motivation haha!

    Corinne x

    • Reply
      lily kate
      20th November 2014 at 9:57 pm

      I suppose self diagnosis is at the root of this issue, because now we don’t know who has and hasn’t been clinically diagnosed and as always, the internet blurs the lines. I think that’s perfectly normal – I’m not always super confident but that doesn’t change who I am. I’m sure we all fall under the category some days!
      That’s what I thought too – we were told at college the other day about how Universities and prospective employers check out all your social media. Censorship really is key to looking professional!
      Wow that’s even earlier than me! You shall be my motivation tomorrow morning!

  • Reply
    19th November 2014 at 7:50 pm

    Very thought provoking post, you’ve raised some very interesting points, especially the one about not feeling uncomfortable at events when others would. As someone who would feel uncomfortable I’d do anything to be in your shoes as I’m sure many others who are on the shyer side would, so it’s very interesting that you see it from the perspective you mentioned!
    Hannah x

    • Reply
      lily kate
      20th November 2014 at 10:02 pm

      Glad you enjoyed reading! I am grateful that I don’t tend to get nervous, but I guess there are always different sides!

  • Reply
    19th November 2014 at 8:10 pm

    You’ve made some really great points here Lily. I really agree with your point about how there seems to be an element of edginess around being damaged and I don’t like that one bit. x

    • Reply
      lily kate
      20th November 2014 at 10:05 pm

      It’s not a very nice thought is it! Thank you 😀

  • Reply
    20th November 2014 at 6:38 am

    Ew! Now I know why I don’t want to start a blog. The internet bugs me sometimes because it is so bloody annoying in all respects. I mean the whole “keeping it real” business. Is showing yourself in a negative light real? would I include all the times I yelled at my children on my cv? Maybe. Everyone is different and it seems as though the internet ought to be a place of diversity, but maybe not. There may be two distinct markets out there, the beautiful lifers and the sociall misfits with problems. There should be all kinds. If you are an axiety ridden person who does lead a beautiful life with totally great outfits, it may be a too complex picture to convey.

    • Reply
      lily kate
      20th November 2014 at 10:13 pm

      I still think you’d write a brilliant blog Max but the internet in general is indeed a pain in the ass! You always have the best analogies for explaining things. I think we’re all a bit of both, to be honest.

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