Have you come out yet?

Image: NinjaM/Flickr
I’ve kept a secret from my family this past year. I’ve dodged issues, given vague answers to direct questions, and steered conversations in different directions when it looked like I might be exposed.

My family doesn’t know about this blog.

They know (obviously) that I’m a journalist. But my journalism is what my Mum calls “grown up”. This is Mum-speak for “a bit boring”.

I love my job, but I hardly think any of my relatives are waiting with baited breath for that thrilling feature about how warehouse management software can optimise the supply chain. So they don’t ask questions about my writing, and they’re used to me taking business trips, so haven’t questioned any of the trips Flea and I have taken in recent months.

Then my brother added me as a friend on Facebook.

My blog is linked to my Facebook profile. If I’m friends with my brother, he’ll see my blog posts in his news feed. He might visit this blog. He might read it. I don’t know exactly why, but the thought makes my blood run cold. Maybe it’s the post I wrote about sex toys. Or the one about being adopted. Or the one about what song was playing when I first, you know. Oh God, he might find my Twitter feed. That would be bad.

It’s not as though I’m blogging in detail about my sex life. And I don’t blog about my family, as a matter of policy. It’s not as though my family don’t know I got divorced, or had a child. On a factual level, 90% of what’s on this blog wouldn’t be news to anyone in my family. So why do I cringe at the thought of them reading about it?

I’ve thought about it for the past week or so – which is roughly how long I’ve been dithering about what to do with my brother on Facebook. On the one hand, I just don’t want my family reading. On the other hand, turning down a friendship request from your sibling just seems rude, doesn’t it?

For me, I think part of the reason is that the “me” I am with my family is a completely different person to the “me” I am with friends, or colleagues, or online friends. Maybe it’s a youngest child thing; but to my family I’ve always been the slightly less responsible, less sorted, more volatile member of the family. Or maybe it’s just that I moved away from home at 18 and I’m used to being able to choose what details of my life I share with my family.

I can’t help wondering whether, if my family were to start reading what I write here, would I write differently? I don’t know if I’d write a post about being adopted knowing my Mum might read it. Or if I’d write a post about dating, knowing my big brother might see it.

How do you deal with the family/blog issue? Do your parents, siblings and friends know you blog? And do you edit what you write accordingly?


Sally is a full-time blogger and founder of the Tots100, Trips100, Foodies100 and HIBS100 communities, along with the MAD Blog Awards. She spends a bit too much time on the Internet. She’s also a very happy Mum to Flea, the world’s coolest ten year old.

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  1. 21st March 2010 / 11:12 pm

    Everyone knows I blog, and I self censor as a result. To be honest I have never felt it held me back – but then I’ve never been one for disclosure anyhow.
    For me the problem would come if I found out any of my patients read my blog.

  2. 21st March 2010 / 11:14 pm

    I am in a very similar situation! I’ll be back tomorrow to read your comments because I’m terrified of the day when I’m outed – even though I don’t write anything overtly offensive!

  3. 21st March 2010 / 11:20 pm

    When I linked my blog to my facebook account, I knew that this would mean that more friends, colleagues and family would read. However, I’ve always written with the knowledge in my mind that they could find it anyway, once something’s out on the net you just can’t control who does or doesn’t see it, and I think that’s a good approach to take. At least with the facebook situation, you know when that coming out is going to happen – it could have happened without your knowledge!
    Recently a colleague asked whether my knowing that she reads my blog has inhibited my writing, as she noticed I wrote with less of “me” in it. I found that an interesting observation, as I hadn’t noticed that myself. It may be true (though it wouldn’t be because she’s reading, more because my whole circle of friends may be reading), or it may be that it’s other reasons why my style has changed. I don’t have the answer, but it’s an interesting dynamic.

  4. 21st March 2010 / 11:24 pm

    I don’t have any “real life” friends on Facebook, or any family members except my husband. I just say that my Facebook is for work networking so it would bore them to tears (all of which is true). So far that hasn’t been questioned.
    To be honest, I think having people you see frequently on Facebook is pretty pointless. It’s great for keeping up with long distance friends, but if you’re seeing someone regularly anyway, why would you want to get the duplication of reading random status updates about their day?

  5. 21st March 2010 / 11:25 pm

    I know what you mean Dan. The chap works in medicine, and I don’t mention anything about him online for that reason, and he’s very careful about using things like Facebook as a result.

  6. 21st March 2010 / 11:26 pm

    I know! I’m not even writing about my family so I’m not entirely sure what I’m terrified of!

  7. 21st March 2010 / 11:27 pm

    That’s an interesting observation. I did have a little “oh” moment the first time a friend mentioned a post I’d written about Flea, but I figure I don’t say anything on the blog I wouldn’t say to my friends so I don’t worry. But there are lots of things on my blog I wouldn’t say to my family – it’s a different dynamic, for me. And I feel blogs without that personality are weaker, somehow. I wouldn’t want to lose it. Perhaps I just need to be braver?

  8. 21st March 2010 / 11:57 pm

    This is such a toughie. The fine line between private and public life.
    I, at one time, had my blog linked to a fan page I set up on FB. But then a few friends came on board, which was ok – they were ‘cool’ friends who recognised the line. Then, I realized that that fan page was on my home FB page (where I personally know 99% of everyone on my friends list – including friends of my bf, my parents, siblings etc).
    I decided that my personal relationships were worth more, so I took off my fan page and any link to my blog. I don’t care how popular my blog is, as it is more of my verbal spewage than anything else. I also decided not to write too much about my bf, as it was a bit of a trust thing (he still doesn’t know I have a blog – again it’s for me).
    So tough sometimes. But my friends who know me well enough respect that, and my blog/online friends know that side of me. Which is pretty damn close to the real me. Including the bits about Jason Statham doing naughty things to me. lol…

  9. 22nd March 2010 / 12:34 am

    Most of my family know I blog and I edit accordingly. A few of my good friends also know about and read the blog.
    However, my Facebook account is completely separate from my blog – I have friends on there who do not know I blog (for example, new friends that I’ve made in the US and who I don’t want to scare off by confessing that I blog about my experiences here). In contrast, my Twitter account is only known to bloggy friends.
    I do sometimes feel as if I am existing in two separate worlds through social media but at the moment, I am not comfortable merging the two. It’s kind of weird, but at the moment it works for me.

  10. Vic
    22nd March 2010 / 3:46 am

    I’ve unfriended the in-laws on FB and Twitter because things I’ve written on my blog have caused problems. It all really depends on what you write and how people who know about your blog will take things. The in-laws are known for overreacting, jumping to conclusions and taking things out of context.
    My family know about my blog. It’s “that thing that I do”. My sister reads, my brother mocks every time I post something. Everyone else doesn’t understand it and, as far as I know, don’t visit. I haven’t changed what I write about because they know about the blog.
    I don’t have many work colleagues on FB, just a few close friends. I’m generally too open about myself on my blog for me to want those people to see it.

  11. 22nd March 2010 / 6:58 am

    There are three people that know I blog all of them friends.
    One reads on a regular basis and gets upset when I haven’t posted anything. one reads occasionally and one has started to blog after seeing mine.
    I tend to write about everything and then write a disclaimer at the bottom, like leave me alone I’m fine.
    My husband doesn’t know I blog as its my way of getting things out and I don’t think I’d want my family to know either. The only problem is the small white lies about the things I review.

  12. Chic Mama
    22nd March 2010 / 9:26 am

    I wouldn’t want any of my family reading my blog as it would definitely affect the way I write and what I write about. My children were getting suspicious of the time spent on the laptop though so I started another blog as a bit of a cover up which I now ‘enjoy'(if you could call my blog enjoyable!) just as much though and I don’t feel so bad about keeping secrets now. ;0)
    How did you keep your brother away from your facebook so long? I started a whole new account for that too but it does get confusing.
    Good luck with your decision…maybe you could just keep ‘forgetting’ his friend request or deny all knowledge of the request. :0S

  13. carolinesweetie
    22nd March 2010 / 9:29 am

    I have been keen to start a blog. I have done Ericaa’s blogging course, I ahve been working on it and I have the foundstions ready. I mentioned it to my OH who then very directly stated that he didnt want me to do one. He used the example of the MoS writer who has blogged about marriage/separation etc and said that he didn’t want this to be me. I explained re other blogs I ready and again he said,please no,don’t do it. He doesn’t even know I tweet.
    What can I do,blog and have his disapproval if he finds out or leave it and be dissatisfied

  14. 22nd March 2010 / 9:41 am

    Ooh, tricky one! My sister reads my blog, but then I tell her EVERYTHING anyway. Apart from that, only a couple of my friends do. My father and my brother know about it, but I don’t think they read it. I do try to write as if they did, because otherwise it will be too embarrassing when someone does find out.

  15. 22nd March 2010 / 9:55 am

    I told my family about my blog pretty much from the beginning. But as it’s evolved I am questioning that decision. I wrote a piece recently about getting old (well 40+) and my dad left a comment. It kind of freaked me out because there were things in it I would imagine he might not “approve” of. But I am not going to censor what I write. I think the attitude has to be if they don’t like it they don’t have to read it. It is funny though how we can express ourselves freely to complete strangers but not to our nearest and dearest!

  16. 22nd March 2010 / 9:58 am

    That is a very good point. My friends and family know about my blog, thankfully my mum doesn’t know how to find it, or that might be a bit awkward. My work collegues follow me on twitter which I don’t like but being in an IT company we have to be on things like that. I think that if people look at your blog they need to accept that you are just trying to be you and it’s your diary or thoughts. xx

  17. Mathew
    22nd March 2010 / 10:00 am

    don’t think anyone in my family reads my twitter stuff. i tried to get them into it as a lot was gonna be about my daughter, but it never really caught on with them. prolly wouldn’t self-censor. they’d mainly know most of that stuff anyway.

  18. 22nd March 2010 / 10:15 am

    I’ve always been upfront with my blog and I have to self censor as a result. But the blog is no different to me, in that everything that goes on there would be things I would be happy to tell people anyway.
    I have things going on in my life that I’d love to blog about but I can’t because there are too many other people involved. Things that would really embarrass the kids are kept under wraps and I don’t blog about my stepdaughter. As the kids get older I will probably have to reign myself in too.
    I started my other blog about my mum’s death a year ago and kept that under wraps until recently because I didn’t want to offend my Dad or his wife, but now that’s out there too.
    All that said, I do find the whole ‘who is reading’ thing a bit scary if I think about it for too long. I know for instance that a lot of Mums in the playground read it but not necessarily sure who because they don’t talk about it … and sometimes I’ll have a conversation with a friend who I don’t think reads the blog for them to say ‘I know that already’.

  19. 22nd March 2010 / 10:34 am

    I let anyone and everyone read my blog and yet I’d be mortified if my parents found it. I’ve idea why as there’s nothing scandalous on there. I can just imagine my Mum reading a blog post then phoning up to ‘discuss it’. A few friends read it and I’m happy with that. But I’m too embarrassed to tell many people about it. I have two separate FB accounts, one personal and one for blog.

  20. Vegemitevix
    22nd March 2010 / 10:54 am

    My parents know about my blog, but I doubt very much whether they read it. My sister is a friend on Facebook and I don’t think she reads it either. Even my husband doesn’t read it. I must be the only blogger in the world who’s own mother doesn’t read their blog!
    Other family members and friends do read my blog and I never say anything so private on there I would be embarrassed telling them face to face. I don’t leave comments on Facebook that may come back to bite me, either.
    Anything excrutiatingly private I write in my own offline journal. Everything else is fair game.

  21. Vegemitevix
    22nd March 2010 / 10:57 am

    Sorry for commenting again, but another thing I just thought of… my children also read my blog, in fact my teenage daughter is very proud that she has a tag all of her own (Dark Princess). If there’s an issue that I want to discuss that I don’t want her to read I write on an alternative blog for parents of teens (www.madmanicmamas.com) I’m happy to blog about my adventures dating after being married, or about the flying brazilian because it’s nothing more than I can tell them face to face!

  22. Nikki
    22nd March 2010 / 12:22 pm

    I don’t blog Sally but I do FB and I don’t add any work clients or family apart from hubbie (although they have requested friends, but I ignore them). It’s my place to think and feel, share, rant and rave so I don’t think they’re entitled to that info. Also as my parents esp don’t understand FB and think its all a conspiracy and “Why would you want to share all of your thoughts and actions”. They really don’t get it and are really scared about it. Easier not to talk about it with them.

  23. 22nd March 2010 / 1:29 pm

    I was thinking about this very subject last night. There are subjects others write about (sex mostly) that I’d love to join in on and just can’t because people I know read it…. But it’s too late now. I wish I’d thought about it in advance. That said, my mum knows about it, but she doesn’t know what it’s called, and as long as I stay vaguely anonymous I can’t see how she’d ever find it…. (crosses fingers)

  24. 22nd March 2010 / 2:14 pm

    My family don’t know I blog although there is nothing on my blog I wouldn’t be happy for them to read. I don’t think they would understand what it is all about. I don’t discuss it with friends either. I deactivated my facebook account when I had a problem similar to yours. Solved the problem in an instance and stopped me getting friends’ requests from men who seem to type in female and single and find my profile!

  25. 22nd March 2010 / 3:02 pm

    My family know about our blog, but don’t read it much yet. My mother asks me to send her links to posts I’d like her to read. When we are travelling, it’ll be our main way of keeping in touch with family and friends, so they’ll all be reading it then, and I’ve gradually started to tell people about it. I don’t know which of them read and which don’t, so I wouldn’t blog about sex toys for instance. I always feel quite embarrased about it, particuarly as I write some quite stream of conciousness stuff and some people I don’t know that well now know about it. I’ve linked my twitter feed to my blog, but really really really hope that none of them catch on how to use it! My MIL is on facebook and I didn’t feel I could say no to her friend request. Put me off FB though.

  26. 22nd March 2010 / 3:03 pm

    I’m totally with you…My sister in law found my blog via my face book, which lead to her telling my mum. She pestered me for days about giving her the web address but I kept changing the subject…thinks she has forgotten about it now. Yes, my blog is a chance for me to let it all out without fear of my thoughts being raised at the family sunday lunch!

  27. 22nd March 2010 / 3:05 pm

    This is interesting. I have a similar issue, except it’s not my family (they just have to accept in a slightly different way now, but it’s still me so what the hell) it’s my work colleagues. they keep asking to follow me on Twitter and a few even follow my blog. I hate them knowing about my home life, even though they are nice people, I’m their boss and it just doesn’t feel right. Tricky isn’t it these lines we have to draw due to this new fangled technology.

  28. 22nd March 2010 / 3:18 pm

    Yes E/O knows, they barely read it or comment. And I like it that way 😀
    I actually deleted all my family off facebook as it was like having a bunch of stalkers. You updated saying “having a shit day” I’d get a phone call oh what’s happened? Er nothing major just a fight with my husband, and no I am not going to tell you about it.
    Or I put I went away to Brugge and my brother texted me while they demanding to know what I was doing there, despite him never contacting me!

  29. 22nd March 2010 / 8:14 pm

    I sort of wish I had a pseudonym. Something cool and mysterious…

  30. 22nd March 2010 / 8:15 pm

    Yes, I’ve tended to keep work people on LinkedIn and use FB for distant friends and, more recently, bloggy friends. It came as a surprise when my family wanted to connect on there. Maybe I should just say, “Why? Don’t you get enough from seeing me in REAL LIFE??”

  31. 22nd March 2010 / 8:17 pm

    Mine is very close to the real me, and it’s honest, so I’m not worried in that sense, you’re right that personal relationships are worth more than anything else.

  32. 22nd March 2010 / 8:18 pm

    I TOTALLY get you on the weird dual life thing. It’s exactly like that for me, too and I’m very much about compartmentalising things in that way, too.

  33. 22nd March 2010 / 8:19 pm

    Cripes. I don’t know how I’d deal with my brother reading every post!

  34. 22nd March 2010 / 8:20 pm

    Yeah, you probably wouldn’t want to be too secretive 😉

  35. 22nd March 2010 / 8:21 pm

    I love the idea of friends giving you critiques on your blogging!

  36. 22nd March 2010 / 8:21 pm

    I’m not sure I could cope with a cover blog – I’ve already got five on the go!

  37. 22nd March 2010 / 8:23 pm

    Perssonally, I’d be tempted to either:
    Blog as a ‘real’ blog using a pseudonym and make it anonymous, which means not linking to your existing email/Facebook/Twitter. Then there’s no way for him to find out, and if he did, there’s nothing on there that’s identifiably about either of you.
    Blog as a ‘fictional’ blog using a character, a bit like Dulwich Mum, where you create a persona. So the blog is based sort of on real life, but not.
    Good luck but don’t be put off – blogging rocks!

  38. 22nd March 2010 / 8:24 pm

    I don’t tell my family everything.
    It’s funny, though, because there’s not a lot on here they don’t know, or that I mind them knowing. Maybe I feel a bit more awkward about them knowing that much about how I feel and think. Probably I’m massively estimating how interested they’d be!

  39. 22nd March 2010 / 8:28 pm

    I don’t know what I’m worried about them reading. Factually they know most of it – maybe I just don’t share my thoughts with them as much as I do with the strangers who read my blog – how disfunctional is THAT??

  40. 22nd March 2010 / 8:29 pm

    God, I’d be mortified if my family commented on my blog! I like your attitude though – if they don’t like it, they can certainly look elsewhere!

  41. 22nd March 2010 / 8:30 pm

    Yes, I had to get over a bit of awkwardness as a journalist when, a day after I launched this blog, the MD of a big PR agency tweeted, “Oh I love Sally’s new Mummy blog”. So, I know lots of people I work with read the blog, and my Twitter feed. It felt a bit cringey at first, but now I just think, “Oh well, so they know I did X or Y.”

  42. 22nd March 2010 / 8:33 pm

    My blog is anonymous and until recently, no one I knew read it. But on mothers day I wrote a piece about my mum and e-mailed her the link as a mothers day present. She’s told me she won’t read anymore if it makes me feel uncomfortable or inhibits my writing though. A friend knows that I blog and has asked for the address, but I just said that I wasn’t comfortable with people I know reading it and she was fine with that.
    My face book account is separate and under my real name. I use it to keep in touch with real life old friends. So definitely no plans to link it to my blog.
    All my readers are other bloggers who found my site on their journeys through the blogosphere. Same for Twitter.

  43. 22nd March 2010 / 8:35 pm

    I get freaked out if I think too much about who’s reading, too. I remember once seeing a regular reader was from a government department and completely FREAKED. I’m not sure quite why, not being a Russian spy or anything.
    I do have a “do not blog list” which covers, well, sex and family basically. So I’m not too concerned, it just feels weird to think of my Mum reading something and ringing me to say, “Ooh, are you having commitment issues, darling?”

  44. 22nd March 2010 / 8:35 pm

    Cold Sweat at the thought of getting one of THOSE phone calls.

  45. 22nd March 2010 / 8:43 pm

    You make a good point, and I have written posts on other blogs that I didn’t want people to know necessarily that I’d written.

  46. 22nd March 2010 / 8:44 pm

    Yes, I’m not too worried about my folks, they don’t really understand enough to know I’m ignoring them!

  47. 22nd March 2010 / 8:45 pm

    My blog was ‘found’ by a family member I’m not keen on and I immediately removed a series of personal posts and stopped posting for months. Not sure if it was the right thing to do but it rattled me as much as it would if they knocked on my window.
    I googled your name: http://www.google.co.uk/search?hl=en-GB&q=sally+whittle&sourceid=navclient-ff&rlz=1B3GGLL_en-GBGB371GB371&ie=UTF-8
    Who’s the Mummy is page one and the bio reads like the rest. It is also linked to from Getting Ink. If they were curious they would find it.
    If you are really worried, just remove the connection from your FB page. Whatever you decide PLEASE don’t stop writing this blog like this as it is seriously amusing.

  48. 22nd March 2010 / 8:46 pm

    Really? I could be using Facebook to find a new husband? 😉

  49. 22nd March 2010 / 8:47 pm

    Actually, I can see using FB less if my family were on there, never mind the blog!

  50. 22nd March 2010 / 8:47 pm

    My blog was ‘found’ by a family member I’m not keen on and I immediately removed a series of personal posts and stopped posting for months. Not sure if it was the right thing to do but it rattled me as much as it would if they knocked on my window.
    I googled your name: http://www.google.co.uk/search?hl=en-GB&q=sally+whittle&sourceid=navclient-ff&rlz=1B3GGLL_en-GBGB371GB371&ie=UTF-8
    Who’s the Mummy is page one and the bio reads like the rest. It is also linked to from Getting Ink. If they were curious they would find it.
    If you are really worried, just remove the connection from your FB page. Whatever you decide PLEASE don’t stop writing this blog like this as it is seriously amusing.

  51. 22nd March 2010 / 8:50 pm

    Hell no! On the other hand, it could make for some highly entertaining blog posts. Now, there’s a thought …

  52. 22nd March 2010 / 8:51 pm

    Yep, I think he’s going to be on Limited Profile 😉

  53. 22nd March 2010 / 8:51 pm

    Yes, given the job I do I just can’t hide this from work colleagues so I don’t even try – and I am careful what I write about my work for that reason. I don’t really want to be the same with family…

  54. 22nd March 2010 / 8:52 pm

    Sounds like you found an approach that works for you, well done!

  55. 22nd March 2010 / 8:57 pm

    Ooh, blimey, sounds a bit dicey.
    I did think long and hard about using my full name on this blog, and linking my other blogs to it, but in the end I’m an audience WHORE and therefore sacrificed my anonymity in the pursuit of page impressions.
    And thanks for the compliment! I feel all warm inside, now.

  56. Beth
    22nd March 2010 / 9:04 pm

    I have a link to my blog on FB, but rarely see any of the people on my friends list.
    I don’t want family to find out about my blog, but I know family members don’t go through my fb info.
    I’m honest in my blog, but I know my family wouldn’t approve of the pics I have of Little Man and Dot on there.

  57. 22nd March 2010 / 9:05 pm

    My family know about my blog but I don’t think they read it really. I keep it in the back of my mind that they might read it occasionally so I do think carefully what I post about. Although I am quite a private person so I doubt I’d be writing stuff on there that they didn’t already know about! Mine is mostly pictures of cakes – pretty harmless and mundane really!

  58. 22nd March 2010 / 9:08 pm

    I started mine for my family and farwaway friends, and it does affect a little how I write. Not so much that I avoid topics, but that I actively post things that I know they would like to hear about, tales I might forget to tell on the phone. I feel that my blog has brought me closer to me family in some ways, they know more about my life, and my opinions about things now and this has enriched the conversations we have. It probably makes my blog rather dull for other readers who don’t actually know me personally (though I am delighted and grateful to have them).
    I don’t know your family, only you know what would wokr best for you, but I imagine they love you very much, and would enjoy getting closer to you through your lovely writing. I’d vote for being FB friends with your brother.
    As a mother I would very much hope that my little ones will be good friends, online and in real life, when they are grown up!

  59. 22nd March 2010 / 9:13 pm

    I write pretty much whatever I want, and if I write something I don’t want family or friends to see, I guest blog or would use Parent Confidential or something like that, or if its something I don’t ever want anyone else to read, I type it up and close the page rather than hitting save!

  60. 23rd March 2010 / 9:46 am

    My family and friends know about my blog. It has never really been an issue. I suppose I’m conscious of the fact that the boys nana and creche manager are reading so have toned things down a little bit on the odd occasion, but overall, it hasn’t been an issue. Don’t think I’ll be posting about sex toys anytime soon though!

  61. 23rd March 2010 / 11:01 am

    My friends and family know that I blog, they know where to find it and it is linked to my facebook. None of them ever really mention it to me though. I dont really think it alters my content as wouldnt say anything too controvercial as I dont think it is fair when they are not able to respond.
    I have had people request to be my friends on Facebook but that I dont want to know about my blog. You know the sort, work people who you cant really refuse but who you also dont want knowing every part of your private life. For these people i edit my facebook privacy settings and stop them from seeing my updates. This is not guarenteed to stop them finding it but at least makes it a little harder.
    I have made my twitter private so that I have on place where I can be me, whatever my mood.

  62. 23rd March 2010 / 11:11 am

    I hadn’t really thought of that, but I guess some of my family are a bit paranoid about social media, so pictures might be problematic – although I’m a wee bit careful with Flea’s pics.

  63. 23rd March 2010 / 11:11 am

    Cakes are NEVER mundane. Wash your mouth out, young lady…

  64. 23rd March 2010 / 11:12 am

    That’s such a positive way to look at it – as a way of sharing things they’d like to hear. Thanks.

  65. 23rd March 2010 / 11:13 am

    I think we need Parent Confidential, or maybe Secret Guest Post day, where they’re all anonymous.

  66. 23rd March 2010 / 11:15 am

    I don’t know if I want to blog in a world where I can’t write about sex toys 😉

  67. 23rd March 2010 / 11:15 am

    Yes, think I’ll be tweaking some settings on there, too. Thanks.

  68. 23rd March 2010 / 12:17 pm

    My family know I write a blog but they never read them, I don’t think they quite understand what they are. My friends are the same. I talk to my family on facebook but actually have a seperate one for my blog. The only family member that reads my blog is my aunt who has now started her own one. It doesn’t bother me if they read it.

  69. 24th March 2010 / 3:03 am

    Hmmm, well let’s see. My in-laws are surprisingly almost my biggest fans. Even more surprisingly is my FIL and how supportive he is.
    I didn’t tell my parents until 3 weeks in and then decided I should be nice and casually mentioned it to my father who then switched it to something about himself and how he once started blogging and he never inquired further-his loss really.
    One of my sisters is my biggest support, the other reads when she gets a chance. My SIL as well.
    My husband reads, many of my friends read it. Other relatives…
    On the other hand I chatted on a mum forum for the past 3 years and only a few knew I was on there-or actually rather which forum I was on. I have a seperate facebook for my real life friends and another for forum/internet. That’s because I have only used my first name.
    I have had complaints from one son and hubby about the content sometimes-but toooo freaking bad.

  70. 24th March 2010 / 9:46 am

    I’ve been flirting with the thought of an anonymous blog for a while now.
    I told anyone and everyone when I set up my blog and I deeply regret doing that. I self censor a huge amount and I know that my blog is blog-lite because of that.
    I’m not sure how I’d explain the extra time on the computer to the husband – if I went anonymous I wouldn’t even want him to know about it.

  71. 24th March 2010 / 1:29 pm

    I’ve written a similar post today, I have myself a local stalker, who could if they haven’t already, find out very easily who am I. I am quite freaked out about it.
    Like you I haven’t written anything on my blog that is top secret nor have I slagged anyone off, but I just don’t feel comfortable with the fact that any expat within a 30 mile radius could now know details about me that even my family don’t!
    I have created a new face book persona for my blog links which saves me any potential embarrassment of family or old school friends seeing my blog posts.

  72. 24th March 2010 / 2:25 pm

    I’ve not come out to family or friends (even my bestfriend doesn’t know about it) but am gradually coming to a point where if my friends found it I’d be ok with it but not family (especially if my Mother in Law might read a couple of rants I wrote a while back…)

  73. Robyn Slingsby
    25th March 2010 / 3:23 pm

    My mum reads my blog too – in fact, she’s the one that points out my typos which I find a tad annoying, like she’s marking my work or something. And then she’ll say my spelling has slipped a bit since I stopped being a journalist and I have to point out I STILL AM a journalist, I just don’t work for a newspaper anymore. Last year I discovered she also looks up my Twitter feed. *sigh* Do I write any differently knowing that she’s reading? Not really. We’re pretty close anyway and she has to respect that I have my own opinions and rants and what I blog about is nothing I wouldn’t say to her face. Or to anyone’s face. Yes, it sometimes makes me cringe that she reads my inner thoughts (she now knows she’s become a little bit mental since I announced my engagement) but you can’t let that stop you blogging from your heart. So, keep up the good work :0)

  74. 2nd April 2010 / 10:45 pm

    God, interesting! This has been big topic for me.
    I’ve passworded all my blog in a panic in the past, twice, as a knee-jerk reaction to being ‘found’. I was found initially through a veerrrry chance incident indeed with an old workmate twitter-following EVERYONE within a 3 mile radius of her home. I’m still not sure if she knows that Hairy Farmer is a girl she knows or not! It took me weeks to cautiously un-password posts.
    The second time, I linked to my personal JustGiving page from my blog, and my lovely, kind, generous readers kindly donated hundreds and hundreds of pounds. My mother obviously twigged something from the fact that she recognised very few of the names, and googled industriously. I haven’t asked her how she did it, but I found my blog in Favourites on her laptop! Thankfully I’d left the dodgier stuff passworded, still.
    When I told Harry’s nursery manager – a friend of my in-laws – that I could only find the old nursery phone number online when I’d been desperately trying to contact them one morning, and she then googled the nursery herself to update the details and promptly found MY BLOG (which had stupidly name-checked them) on page two of google… and then they started arriving in their droves on my blog using that search term… I knew I either had to stop blogging, or stop the secrecy! The last two months I’ve been open about my blog if it seems to come up in conversation, although no-one has actually asked for the URL yet! I no longer know who has told whom. I have bits & bobs of media work coming in that I suspect will blow the shreds of my cover completely among my friends, but that’s ok – I’ve made sure there’s nothing incendiary left on display!
    And all this has, undoubtedly, constrained me from washing my dirty linen in public! Bah!