Here I am

by Ginger on September 11, 2008

in Becoming Myself, Blogging & Social Media

There seems to be a rash of bloggers getting “outed” going on the last few days. I think I’ve read no fewer than 5 blogs today where that’s the case. Most have been found by bosses and coworkers, but some have been family members, significant others, real life friends, and casual dates. It’s a very tangible reminder to me of why I’m blogging under my real name.

Before starting this blog, I did a lot of planning and thinking. Ok, so the planning consisted of lists of post-its and surfing other blogs…it’s, uh, research! Yeah that’s the ticket. But thinking, I did do a lot of that. Thinking about names, themes, layout. Thinking about why and whether I really wanted to do a full-fledged blog. Thinking, thinking, thinking. (I tend to live in my head a lot…)

One thing that really played in my head was the anonymity thing. The safety issues. The privacy issues. The future/current employment issues. The family issues. Oh God the family issues! I really went back and forth for several weeks about whether to blog under my real name, or whether to blog anonymously, which would give me greater freedom in how much I talked about certain things.

But the whole idea of this blog was less about WHAT I was writing and more about giving me a voice and place to become visible in this world. A place to really put myself out there and see what *I* can create and offer to the rest of the world. A place, to be honest, where I could be the center of attention.

And frankly, being anonymous defeats those purposes for me.

I completely understand the people who blog anonymously, and I feel horrible for them when they get outed. I had an anonymous blog for a while, and it felt fantastic to say some of the things I said on that blog. It was a wonderful way to release some of the things I never say to anyone. But I was so worried about what would happen if I was found out, that it stifled me pretty quickly. It was, in the long run, one more place to hide.

Of course, doing this under my real name does restrict me a bit. I have to keep certain things private to feel comfortable–there are family issues and details I will not blog about, work issues and details I will not blog about. I also don’t plan on writing about my sex life, politics (much) or religion(at all). I am restricting what I put out there, so that I can blog under my name without fear of hurting a family member, friend, or my career.

But, the names you’ve seen for my husband and me are real. Lots of my family knows about the site, and I’m sure more will find out as I get more confident in my writing to tell them about it. Since my husband’s art career is such a big part of our lives, I’m sure there will be more posts about what show we’re going to be at and when. If the big bad internet wants to cause problems, I know I’m leaving the door wide open.

But if I’m going to create this place, for the reasons I wanted to create it, it’s got to be the real me. For better or worse.

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