A writer’s struggle with privacy

Published November 15, 2013 by hrhdana

I’m struggling with blogging. I have never had a public blog before. I’ve never had a blog that was tied to my offline life. My blogs, in the past, have been where I come to write and receive feedback from people whom I have never met or only met through blogging. There is a freedom in that exchange. I can present my life, my world, my experiences to people who don’t know me. I can talk about whomever I want because the readers don’t know them.

This blog is different. This blog is promoted on my facebook page and in other circles I frequent. This blog is public and accessible by anyone. It’s silencing me.

How can I write about my notoriously private boyfriend when some of the people reading know exactly who he is, even if I give him an adorable code name?
How can I write about my experiences as a survivor when there is a chance that my Daddy might click on this link?

How can I write about that argument with my coworker when she could, theoretically stumble across this?

How much do I write about my daughter before I’m depriving her of her privacy?


It’s all become so complicated for me.

How do I write my story with no supporting cast of characters?


I’m struggling.


As a poet and a writer privacy has never really been a goal of mine. I share my heart, my mistakes, my fears, my nightmares. I do it as a way to process my life. I do it hoping that someone will see themselves in something I write and know that they are not alone. I write because it helps me be a better person when I contemplate my actions. I write because I need to.


I’m not sure how to move forward.

I’m hoping I can figure it out.


12 comments on “A writer’s struggle with privacy

  • That’s why there are many methods for you to share your story! Blogging is just one way! Short stories or poetry or and autobiography are others. You are a dynamic writer that can choose what ever way to express yourself. But you are in control of who see it and what you choose to share. Don’t ever forget that you have the power! You are the HRH Dana and don’t ever forget it!

    • You are so right artkazi. There are many ways to write and share. Thank you for your kind words brother man. I miss myspace. LOL I miss just opening the little box and typing without a worry in the world. This is so different. LOL

  • i struggle with being an open book. because i get taught the lesson time and again that sharing myself with those i deem worthy…doesn’t keep them from sharing me with those i’d never offer a seat at the table.
    it’s happening daily on the current page, which is why i stopped talking about michael some time last month.
    to add the field of your love, your child, your family, your co-workers…and say ‘how do i reconcile that? or how do i balance my desire to speak, with my want to keep people happy, and unhurt, or allow/afford them their illusions.
    that balance??? man i dunno.
    it’s seemingly impossible.
    do you sacrifice the autonomy of others for your craft??? or sacrifice your craft for those you love??
    maybe your precious little one will be glad you gave her a voice through your words…maybe she’ll hit 18 and sue you for royalties lol

    my answer always was; share with those you can trust. and then the people…they remind me, i should never have trusted them.

    • Girl please get out of my head!

      The poem I posted yesterday was shared with a family member who isn’t even online. LOL An emergency phone call was made inquiring about my safety. sighs I get it. They love me but can a sista just write? And if you were concerned why not call me? Why rile up the old folks with your foolery? I don’t do well when I can’t block people.

      This is quite the conundrum

  • Well, it’s your story. Your life. Your relationships. Blogging etiquette isn’t a whole lot different from social etiquette: Unless you’re singing someone’s praises appropriately in public, don’t talk about other people, just about your experiences. When in doubt ask.

    Definitely draw and keep important boundaries, for example with your household and family.

    Definitely keep some trusted reviewers around to okay posts you think might have gone too far.

    Outside of that, if you know there are huge parts of your story that certain folks don’t want you to share, come to terms with how you want to allow that to silence you or not. Your testimony matters.

    Be aware of what writing about your experience brings about for you and let it take time. Sometimes you may write things you never post. Or have something evolve differently than planned. Enjoy it.

  • There are often topics or people that I would love to blog about, but I steer clear of it as I have also made my blog very public and I promote it on my personal FB page. I try to take those things and change details working them into a fictional piece, so that I can get it out on paper.

  • I wish I had something of great value or consolation to offer as you consider and engage your conundrum. (I also love that word, although I hardly use it because I’m too lazy to Google it make sure I’m spelling it correctly.)
    Just know that I love you, and I admire you greatly, even if I can’t relate to this particular struggle. Once my crazy train jumped the track with little notice or fanfare, and I survived the carnage, I figured, what the hell. My living irony is that the shit I make up is what people believe, and the truth is what people call bullshit.
    I know it’s a strange luxury to have nothing to lose, and I take full advantage of it at near every opportunity. It also helps me to reconcile my mind to the fact that not nearly as many people are paying attention to me as I’d like to think. Most m’f’ers might be nosy as hell, but they’re also lazy as fuck, and would rather not have to read the truth, when they can just assume it or not give a shit about it.
    But you, as someone who is better skilled than most at guarding and protecting what you love, I know you’ll find your way through your struggle. Your gift will help guide you. You’ll know what to disclose and how to when the mood is right. Sometimes, I think, you just have to be really still and find a quiet place in your mind to allow your heart to speak. I imagine that with a life as busy and full as yours, that it is easier said than done, but however/whenever you engage it, never doubt that you are stronger than your struggle.

  • I’ve been thinking very hard about this….and honestly there are no easy answers.

    But here is a thought…how would you express these feelings if the internet didn’t exist?

    Some things are just private and just can’t be shared with the world. Why? because those are the sacrifices that we make for those that we love. Period.

    I wrote a note about my daughter on FB and her dad got offended. Unknowing to me that someone would show it to him…one of his flunkies non the less but…once I heard his reasons they were valid…but my reasons were valid too… what do you do?

    MS was nice because you could choose who to let in…but how many times were things copied or screen printed and passed along? You just have to make a decision… is it worth it?
    I’ll take calculated risk… if it opens the door for change…. but if all that you get is hurt/or you hurt others and cause them to feel some way about a situation involving them that was put out there for the world to see…
    Doesn’t that defeat the purpose…the intended reason that it was written in the first place?

    I want so bad to write about my real dad.. but he…my sisters and his wife are on my page…and people that know them… Do I put raw feelings out there about how I really feel about how he treats me compared to my sisters…. his wife…etc?

    Probably not…I know that it will defeat my purpose for writing it…but it is tucked away neatly in a notebook handwritten until I figure out if I ever want to share it…

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