PYHO- Inferiority Complex

Sometimes I get so frustrated by blogging.  Not the actual ACT- I love it.  I’ve been blogging for more than a decade now on one platform or another.  And for years and years, the majority of the blogs I read were private, invitation only and REAL.

The people I blogged with- in that we read and commented on each others blogs and eventually our correspondence moved to emails, texts, phone calls, and even meeting up in person- were people that I identified with.  They were people I wanted to be friends with, people who despite being behind a computer screen, were like me.

Perhaps the security of a private audience is what makes bloggers open up more, and share not just the good, but the bad parts of their lives.  I say this because since moving to this public platform for my blogging, I’ve noticed a difference in people.

Not my old friends.  They’re still there and the same and I love them.

But the new bloggers I’ve met since moving.  So many of them seem… elite.  No, that’s not the word I am looking for.  I’m not sure what the right word is, but these women don’t always make me feel like I am part of this mothering/womanly/sisterhood like we had established among our private journals.

I thought by going public, I’d meet more woman like me.  More moms, wives, FRIENDS.

Instead, it seems that the majority make me feel bad about myself.

Oh, they don’t do it on purpose.  I’m sure they have bad days too.  But they don’t blog them.

Nope- they only blog the crafts and meals that come out perfect.  The photos that don’t show their flaws, or their kids tantrums.  Their messy house with crayon on the walls.   The days where they let their kids watch TV instead of creating educational crafts for them to complete.

When you read their blogs, all you see are happy smiling faces, immaculate kitchens, and photo-worthy activities.  You don’t see upside down cereal bowls on the floor in the background, and kids in pajamas eating lunch (which consists of processed cheese sandwiches and canned fruit instead of homemade hummus and organic carrots).  Those kids would NEVER be in their PJs that late in the day.

I get it.  I know why people only blog the good- and I’ll admit to deciding not to share photos with you all that show just how disorganized we are.  I am not totally above doing that myself.

But when all you see is perfection, sometimes it’s hard not to feel inferior, and that you don’t fit in.  (Especially when you constantly have messy counters and crazy toddlers hanging off of them).

Why yes, that's my coffee table, in the dining room.

Comments

  1. 1

    That’s why I like reading your blog – you are real and a lot of the blogs. Love are real. I try to be real – I regularly warn that our world is nothing but perfect.
    Cat@jugglingact recently posted..Love

  2. 2

    OMGosh you are SO right!!
    I’ve been following a blog for more than a year now and all I see is her little girls dressed in AMAZING clothes, with shoes to match each outfit separately. Immaculate house, they have a pool, they take regular vacations, her kids are always immaculate. Apparently the husband works, she does not, they apparently have a TON of money… her youngest has Down Syndrome and I have “heard” her moan about it… Well I’ve got two special needs kids and no money for the proper treatments. So when I “hear” someone with tons of money and a wonderful marriage etc, moan, it REALLY pisses me off.
    Imagine if she didn’t have a ton of money or her marriage was falling apart (which as you know is very common when you have special needs kids and have gone through the preemie roller coaster like I have)…

    My house is very disorganized too ;) we are doing great though. the kids are happy and healthy and that is all that matters. Love, love, love reading your blog :)
    Give those CUTIES a hug (I too have twin boys!)
    Tina from Greece

    • 3

      I know my kids aren’t going to remember that the dishes weren’t always done after a meal, but they will remember that we let them build forts out of cushions and blankets instead… leaving our house a disaster. And really, what’s more important to have? I’m all about the happy memories from my childhood, and want my kids to have the same.

  3. 4

    They don’t have 7 happy, normal kids who love them, I’ll bet!

  4. 6

    well on my old blog I blogged real ad the it got me harassed. I guess that is why I do’t blog so much o my new blog aymore, I have a hard time “sensoring” what I should really write. Too much and I worry what others will say. Too little and it’s not eve worth writing about. I started blogging for me, and now it’s turned into…..well I don’t even know anymore.. :-(
    Cindy recently posted..Ask me anything (almost)

    • 7

      Oh yeah, it is totally a fine line. I’ve been lucky to have not really have anyone harass me yet, but I’m sure it’s coming someday. I DO keep some stuff to myself, which I blog about privately just to get out- that I know would turn this blog into chaos.

  5. 8

    I love you post today! Many a time I have succumbed to “look at me! I’m the perfect Mommy!” pictures and post. I have to sometimes force myself to hit “publish” on the post that are mundane, cluttered pictured, and with kids crying. Overall, my general goal is for my kids, as adults, to be able to look back at my blog and see their life for what it truly was. A mom who tried her best for her kids! Hopefully they will be able to see it through the mess of pictures (even the ones where I have cleaned and wiped the counter around where the picture was being taken :)

    xoxox
    Hillary recently posted..That’s My Boy!

  6. 10

    I can understand trying to appear flawless if you’re running a craft / recipe / fashion sort of blog. But why bother if you have a personal blog about your kids? I like being able to see the good and the bad – and the twins hanging off of random pieces of furniture. I always get a kick out of the photos you post! :)
    Jenn [ Crippled Girl ] recently posted..Movie Love

  7. 12

    Well, darling, that’s why we love YOU!

    :)

    I also hate those blogs – I do love beautiful things and to be inspired (and hope I inspire others too) but I like to think I do let 99% of it all hang out and be real.

    Also, your cooking and baking would make me feel inferior if I let it :) KIDDING – but you do bake so beautifully!

    LOVE the picture of the two little men!
    Marcia (123 blog) recently posted..Wordless Wednesday – 3 faces

    • 13

      You have your organizing talents that make me jealous, and I can bake. What I should do is take a photo of the prep area next time I make something- so you can feel better ROFL I make HUGE messes (and just leave them for Aaron to clean up)

  8. 14

    Giuilty as charged… Yesterday I cropped a photo so no one would see the pile of laundry on my dresser! :) But here’s something about blogging (at least from my POV) when I blog about the rough spots I usually end up feeling sorry for myself. When I blog about the happy moment in an otherwise bad day. It helps me put things in perspective a little more. That’s part of why I blog, to help me step outside my self- absorbed perspective and ask myself what the truth of the situation is.. And the truth is we ALL have reason to rejoice, even on the rough days. Well at least that’s my take on things so if my blog ever seems too cheerful you’ll know the truth – I don’t always feel it but I always reach for it.
    Kristi recently posted..Exercise

    • 15

      Oh PSH I crop photos all the time (or kick toys out of the way before I take them)! If I didn’t, people would be calling Hoarders on me.
      I do like to blog about the happy times- because that IS what is most important. I just try to come across as truly happy by sharing other imperfections, you know? We may be happy and having fun but our house is a disaster– and that’s OK!

  9. 16

    I so relate to this post. But I’m not a “pro” blogger. I don’t have the skills to blog interesting stuff. haha. You know how I feel about some mommy bloggers that we both know. I still see the old you in your posts. I love that you post realistic every day things and kids with dirty faces and just REAL stuff. I think “mommy” bloggers think they HAVE to be perfect to get the traffic, etc. It makes their blogs a LOT less sincere when you feel they are blogging to their audience and not the truth. It’s one reason why I love the bloggess, she blogs the real, and she curses and she really doesn’t care if people like it or not and she has tens of thousands of followers now, because she IS real. REAL people curse, REAL people feed their kids processed food and admit it, REAL people have bad days and messes and are NOT perfect. So no need to feel inferior if you are being real, that’s the you I love.
    Jamie recently posted..W.W.

    • 17

      Yes, I try to blog for ME not necessarily just the audience- because I want to be able to look back on it and have it be a scrapbook of memories, of our lives- and not just the picture-perfect moments.

      Of course I do need to make it entertaining for the audience so I can pay the bills to though… it’s fine line.

  10. 18

    Oh, the perfect meals, the wonderful crafts, the PERFECT LIVES.

    Ugh.

    Totally makes me feel bad.

    My house is a disaster. Total disaster. We rarely do crafts and I order pizza at least once a week.

    • 19

      That is why I love you- you are real too :) I can read your blog and know you aren’t going to try to turn it into whatever is the ‘hot’ blogging topic of the month, you stay true to you.

  11. 20

    I love the REAL posts. :)

  12. 22

    Your blog is one of the only ones I follow religiously because you’re so real. I don’t publicly blog, but if I did, I’d want it to be like yours. You’re so honest and real.. it’s refreshing.
    Don’t feel bad about yourself.. you are amazing.. even if your kids eat lunch in their pajamas. (psst, mine do too!)

  13. 24

    I love this post and how real it is. I have more than a few pictures that I haven’t posted because there’s a pile of cloth diapers on the floor, or the baby loves playing with the gallon water jugs, and they are all over the place, or the kitchen table looks like a bomb of school work and lunch went off on it, or my vacuum is in the background and hasn’t been emptied (I actually got called out on that one…)
    I’d rather have happy kids that I play games with and chase around the house than cleared clean shiny counter tops anyway.
    Judy recently posted..WW- They’re Watching You

  14. 26

    oh am i glad i clicked over! only read one post and i already like you. :D it’s the picture that sold it for me. LOVE IT. but really, i KNOW i piss some people off with my blog; i KNOW they think i’m full of crap with the way i’m so infatuated with my kid… but that really is me. i don’t sugarcoat things, but i can’t pretend to be unhappy if i’m not. that said, i completely hear what you’re saying and i find those blogs pretty eye rolling and gagalicious myself. the ones that just stick with crafting or one niche- fine. i’ll let their lack of reality slide since they’re focused one one thing. but other ones, the perfect all the time ones? blech.
    christina recently posted..PYHO: gifts

    • 27

      My blog is mostly my kids too- because they are my life right now. I don’t work outside the home or anything, so they are my focus :)

  15. 28

    I will take normal, regular, every day mess over sanitized perfection any day. I still follow and read this blog, check in more than once a day, those other blogs, I don’t go to anymore. I don’t hate them, they just got boring and a bit sanctimonious.

    Keep posting those pajama boys photos!

  16. 30

    I keep it real. I have shown numerous pictures of laundry mountains, overflowing sinks and an entire room stuffed with junk…which I’ve now stuffed into a closet. I work fulltime and have a 13 month old. My great accomplishment last night was cleaning the litter box.
    Diana @ A Little Bit of Life recently posted..Breaking Up is Hard to Do – PYHO

  17. 32

    New to writing a blog but I can assure you all my writing is real…the Ramen noodles for dinner, forgetting school picture day, forcing myself to shower by 3 to pick up kids from school. Maybe you should check out some other blogs? I get why food/craft bloggers want to create the illusion of perfect but the other blogs I prefer are the genuine ones that share their struggles.
    Robbie recently posted..Blank

  18. 34

    love it. i don’t think you have to worry about getting the “perfect” from me. though I did try to crop my gut out of the dog picture today.
    brandy recently posted..A tale of 2 puppies

  19. 36

    You know, when I first started blogging I had the real relationships with others then somewhere along the line I got caught up in the whole, I want to be the best blog ever thing. Then, it dawned on me that I would rather have a smaller blog and be able to just be me. In January, I vowed to only blog from my heart and share the real me. It is liberating!
    Also, I should say that I have stopped following a lot of those perfect mom, clean kid blogs too because it feels fake to me. I love your blog because it is as real! Keep doing what you are doing!
    Maria recently posted..Secret to my Success

  20. 38

    I don’t think you need to feel bad about yourself or what you choose to blog about. It’s your space, and from the comments I see here, your readers love you and what you choose to show them, warts and all :)

    Stopping by from PYHO.

  21. 40

    Oh yes, they make me feel bad too. I am so not a perfect, crafty, organized, energized mother. My daughter watches too much TV, I nap pretty much every day, and I currently have three baskets of clean clothes that have been waiting to be folded since Sunday.
    christine recently posted..Some Happy Moments

  22. 42

    This is an interesting post. I think we all have moments where we feel like we aren’t measuring up when we look at other people’s lives. It’s hard to remember that we are all on the outside looking in and that an online relationship means that we only get what people choose to filter and share with us. We don’t see the things that might be revealed or shared in in-person relationships. Some people feel more comfortable sharing impersonal things like crafts or recipes rather than personal parenting struggles, etc. They may just have other outlets for their personal struggles than their blogs. If I have a serious parenting meltdown, I call my mom or my sister, but I don’t post on my blog; it would leave me feeling way more vulnerable than I feel comfortable with. Despite this, I have selectively shared some difficult parenting moments on my blog(tantrums, poop explosions, days where I need alone time) but also lots of crafts and some of my parenting successes too. I do share parenting strategies or tips that I think others might find useful. I respectfully disagree that you have to share particular personal aspects of your life to be “real” on a blog; people just share differently or have different focuses for their blogs and that’s ok. I do appreciate the feelings that you raised though, because, as I said, I think everyone has moments where they are feeling vulnerable and someone else’s seemingly perfect lives get under our skins. Check out my recent post on openness and reservation in relationships because I think it addresses the issue you raise. I think you’d find it interesting given your post. Thanks for sharing and raising some interesting questions!
    Pamela recently posted..Openness and Reservation: Understanding the Value of Both Disclosure Styles in a Relationship

  23. 43

    Thank you SO MUCH for sharing this! I couldn’t agree me. I always forget about the blogs that include recipes and perfect pictures and find myself drawn to ones that are REAL! I love your blog, how open you are, and your sincere honesty. I feel like you help people just by sharing your stories – you help me. I am guilty of trying to have nice pictures only because they are close ups of my daughter, but I promise you my house probably smells like dog pee. Just sayin’…
    Savannah recently posted..Diamond Ring

  24. 45

    Sometimes I feel like if I write about the hard stuff, I’ll come off as whiney and complaining. I totally get what you are saying and thank you for expressing it
    Denise recently posted..Those Condescending Looks

    • 46

      Yes, I often expect backlash from my not-so-happy posts, but I’ve been rather pleasantly surprised and very supported :)

  25. 47

    I had that same thought this morning. Wondering what happens when they’re blogging, right now my 11 month old is coloring on me with a pen and destroying everything that I had just cleaned, even though I have Tangled on to entertain her so I can have a few minutes to comment. It’d be nice to see some more people post about the mess, and about the tantrums. Great post!

  26. 49

    hate those blogs. i really think it does a disservice to women, this “look, everything in my life is perfect, and i can do it all” business. it’s crap, and it’s not true.
    Alicia recently posted..Exciting Developments Up in Here

  27. 51

    I completely agree!!!! I wrote last week’s PYHO about my blog envy and how I feel so inferior to the elite bloggers of today. I’m glad I found your blog today! I’m excited to be a true follower and reader. Thanks for the honesty!
    mrs.monica recently posted..PYHO: Because I Work Hard

    • 52

      Thank you! I don’t know how some of these bloggers do it- not only do they write so well but the photos, and the sheer amount of posts they put up… So many days we do nothing but stay home in our jammies watching TV… how can I blog some long witty well thought out prose about that?

  28. 53

    I’m pretty sure I’ve written a whole post about the fact that my son once wore only PJ’s for 8 weeks straight. And another about the importance of breakfast for dinner. And one about that horrible never-ending tantrum at the mall. I write the good, but I also share the absurd…isn’t that what parenting is all about?? I’m with you, blogging sister!
    Practical Parenting recently posted..Temporary Emotions

  29. 55

    That’s what bugs me about Facebook. Everyone posts their highlight reel. So annoying. Your kitchen counters look just like mine. And as I sit here and type this comment, my twins have disappeared and are surely locking themselves in my bathroom. :)
    Leigh Ann recently posted..The de-cribbing

  30. 57

    and yet, I follow a dozen or so blogs just like yours where the kids are messy, houses are messy, and those are the interesting ones. Don’t feel alone.

  31. 59

    I read your blog because it IS real. And I really really miss the interaction and depth on livejournal. It seems blogs and facebook are so superficial, we get the highlights but not as much of the deeper interaction. I really need to blog again, but there’s almost noboby left on my fl to read it :( . I have always loved reading your journal, your blog, whatever you were writing. Your kids are hilariously funny sometimes, and you are honest and open about the sorrow, frustration and joy that make up daily life. It seems like we’ve known each other forever (not sure how long, but you were pregnant with Elora). We’ve never met in person, but I know you better than some people I see every day. Every time I slip into one of my worn, faded shirts you tie-dyed for me, I think of you. I miss some of the more personal posts you used to write and how your doctor’s visits are going!

    • 60

      I’m not having any doctor’s visits :( I miscarried and had a D&C back on Jan. 12th.

      Almost everyone is gone from LJ from my friends list too… it makes me sad.

  32. 61

    PS two days later, that’s why I am kind of off FB but yet I crop out my tummy in pics :) LOL
    Marcia (123 blog) recently posted..{Friendship Friday} How easily do you let go?

  33. 63

    I LOVE this post and I can totally relate! My blog is REAL I write about what I’m feeling and I’m honest. My favorite bloggers are the ones who do the same.
    Sarah B recently posted..Yes, I am “Mom Enough”