Monday, 28 February 2011

A very British blog...

Since becoming a blogger, I have to say that my interest in reading all things blog has increased even more.  I was fascinated before, but now I can happily spend hours perusing other people's stories.  In some cases wishing that they would blog again soon because I can't wait for the next installment.  I was going to go for another obscure film reference there, but I resisted.

But in reading these blogs, two things seem to stand out to me.  The first is that they are often deeply sad, moving or 'depressing' due to which, the second, is that the blogger feels the need to somehow weave in a very self conscious apology for glumming down the blogosphere.  I too feel the temptation to do the same.  Having started writing my blog at somewhat of a low point for me personally in my life, there is an inevitability that some of the content is going to be less than upbeat.  Its an outpouring of my feeling when I don't have anywhere else to outpour.  When I examine my motivation for blogging it is not (probably wrongly) to entertain, but instead to just cope.

Last week when I was really low and sad, I went out and bought shoes.  I actually felt better.  I wondered why I'd never done that before - its a well known tactic.  They are really cute too and go well with my jeans and have a 4 inch heel.  Sorry, distracted by shoes...where was I?  Anyway, blogs, that's it.  I realised, (having parted with cash for shoes and understanding that if you are shopping you can't just buy shoes and that there was a nice top that I needed - oh and some very nice underwear - oh, and I must have that nail polish, I don't have that colour) that being sad could get expensive.  A blog however, is a reasonably priced way of getting all the emotion out.  And therein lays the issue.

The trouble is that when you let the emotion out in the words of a blog, there is a danger that it will be very un-British.  It might be messy.  It might say things that one shouldn't in public.  It might open me up to be thought of as mad, a bitch, a weirdo, a less than intelligent specimen, a freak.  But if I preface it with "I'm a bit upset today", "sorry for the depressing theme" or some other self-deprecating line then the madness seems less mad.  I've managed to save some face.

So what's my point?  I am really willing to read blogs where people are talking about how unhappy they are, where they are feeling a bit down, where they wish that they could be more cheerful.  I know that over time that I too will get more cheerful and I'll get things back on track and my blogs might even be funny sometimes.  But while you're miserable and upset, you shouldn't have to apologise for it.  I want to read the sad blog as well as the happy blog and I want to celebrate that you were frank and candid in both places.  And I want you to be able to be you.  We often have to hide so much of our trannyness away from those that judge us.  Surely our own blogs are the one place of sanctuary where we can let our full, multi-coloured outpourings outpour.


  1. I follow several of the same blogs that you do and from time to time have thought of starting my own blog.
    If I had my own blog I would like to call it the Happy CD.
    I find life, in general, is tough. As a rule it is just easier going through things with a smile and an upbeat attitude.
    I can see how it is easy and to a degree comforting to wallow in the self imposed self pity of being down on oneself due to your specific gender issues.
    My 2 cents of advise is to smile and figure how to have fun with the things in life that interest you...gender related and non-gender related.

  2. I have to say that even brash Americans like myself feel obliged to apologize for sad content sometimes. I think it's just sensitive people not wanting to bring others down, and reassuring readers that it won't always be thus.

    If you are looking for more reading material, I would be happy to give you access to my private blog. It gets very emotional at times, but after three years, you know I'd have to get there at some point. Drop me an email if you have an interest.

    I think you're doing splendidly so far!


  3. For me I like to tell it how it is - there are good parts and bad parts of my life. My memory isn't that great and I like to think that if I look back in years to come, I can get an honest view of how I was at that time the entry was written.

    There is another point that whilst my blog is written by me, for me I appreciate the feedback that others give. If I was to write a never ending stream of negative posts then I might drive away the very people who might be able to help and guide me in the future.

    There is also the other option to keep some of the upsetting things private as Leslie Ann indicates above that she has done but then I might lose the words of comfort that others may give.

  4. First of all - thank you for commenting - I really appreciate that you have taken any time to consider my post.

    @scalesman - I think that's a great blog title and I look forward to reading it soon :-) You are right that it is a healthier thing to have a positive outlook on life, but I guess what I'm saying is that sometimes, when you are feeling down and want to express it, that you shouldn't feel bad about it, but instead should feel comfortable here, or all places to do so.

    @Leslie Ann - thank you for that insight that Becca picks up on as well. As I am new to this, I've yet to see any negative impact of blogging on other people. When I read them and some one is going through a hard time, I really feel for them and sometimes even cry for them. But I do that from an optimistic place that says that things will get better and I want to watch to see how - and to see the chinks of light that inevitably break through somewhere. Also it occurs to me that if someone is that down that often, its good for them to know that somewhere, their reaching out is not in vain.

    I like some obscure films. You may have noticed! In 'V for Vendetta' (!) there are two prisoners in adjoining cells. One of the prisoners who has had a really hard time and is near death writes her autobiography and passes it onto the other one. She knows that things won't get better, but for her, passing on her life experience makes her feel better and softens what is happening. Without wanting to sound trite or pious, I want to be one of the blogging army who listens when others don't.

    And Leslie Ann, if you are still reading! Yes please, I would be honoured to be able to read your private blog.

    @Becca - your candour why I loved reading your blog! Thank you for helping me think the impact of negativity. I hope to make friends here who even when things are down for longer periods who stick by you. I'm hoping you've found some of those too?

  5. Accessing a private blog means that I will have to send you an invite. For that, I will need an email address. You don't have one listed on your blog or profile. If you will follow my link, just drop a note to my mailbox and I will send an invite forthwith, as well as a long note probably!