The topic of this post is something I’ve struggled with for a while now. However, I recently understood something about the nature of my writing and clarified the reasons I do it to myself. When talking about difficult topics related to my life, how do I handle the possibility of putting others in a bad light?
As you may already know, this blog’s content is quite sensitive. I talk about topics like self-harm, relationships, and my road to femininity. All the subjects are related to my path to recovery and balance. Obviously, the journey hasn’t always been that rosy.
Most of the content I publish here on my site stems from my real experiences. Consequently, this means that I can’t avoid talking about my interactions with people. Be it family, friends, or strangers on the internet.
I’ve had some fall-outs with certain people due to the things I’ve posted, and I’ve since taken a look at my wording. After all, I don’t wish to come off as vengeful when I’m talking about my past. All I want is to share my story, even the dark parts of it. Unfortunately, this sometimes means talking about the neglect or abuse I’ve endured. It’s all a part of the journey.
Not to mention the overwhelming transformation I’ve gone through going from accepting it all to holding my own. It’s important to shed light on the methods and ways I’ve managed to improve if only to spark hope in my fellow strugglers. Despite the negativity around my depiction of some of the most personal experiences, I’ve had in my life.
As I mentioned, I’ve taken a good look at the way I type things out. After the fallout, I went on a bit of a self-reflection journey. I noticed that the tone of some of my articles was angry, bitter, and borderline vitriolic. Now I’m not saying conveying negative feelings isn’t allowed, but there is a proper way to do it. We don’t need to spew hot lava to make our point, or to write about our pain.
This is why I try my best to keep the people in said posts anonymous. Of course, this isn’t always possible. That’s especially true when I speak about my childhood. Family matters can become a touchy subject at the best of days, let alone when related to BPD.
When writing about my past, I’ve adopted a special precaution. As I edit, I look for indications of the blame game and remove them. This is not because of some sort of self-censorship, but because I wish that side of me to quiet down. After all, I have forgiven those who caused me pain in the past. And my language should reflect that choice.
It’s OK to Talk About Your Experiences
When push comes to shove, remember that in this type of content, it’s your lived experience. And it is OK to speak about what you’ve gone through. No matter who tries to convince you otherwise, don’t listen to them. I’m certain we could all learn a thing or two about your life’s story!
Try to go about it in good faith, though. Write about your own views and feelings. This isn’t about the person who wronged you, this is about you. How you are coping with what happened, and how you are recovering. In the best cases, you may indeed be able to provide some extremely valuable insight to the rest of us.
You are the protagonist, the hero of your story. Focus on your arc, and everything else will fall in place.
Dealing with Critique
Somewhere around a year after I started my journey, I got a call.
‘You’re not writing about me, right?’
That was right after a hysterical cry-shouting from another person. How could I write such deceitful garbage?!
The thing is, this is my experience. You may not like it or agree with it. Yet, that doesn’t mean it’s not valid, or that I should just stuff it where the sun doesn’t shine.
I fully accept the consequences of the words I publish, be it disownment or cheers for being brave. We can’t please everyone, and the upsetness of others is no reason to pipe down. I have important things to share. Things that could help bring some of the thoughts of Borderlines and other fellows to light.
My mission trumps your taking offense at my personal experiences.
In the end, it’s something we all have to make our peace with and decide how to move forward. I chose to ignore the pleas of people, as their perceived shame is not my problem. I have enough of my own baggage to carry in this life. And I chose to put it to use to shed light on BPD and the struggles of womanhood and writing.
Try to remember to be tactful, and keep the story on you. I sometimes slip as well, but when I do, I learn from it. We are not here to be vengeful or bitter about the past. I don’t think anyone in their right mind likes to dwell on misery and hatred for too long.
Recall your purpose and why you are writing about your life, be it a blog or memoir, or anything else. Weigh it against the people you are about to bring to light and see if their acceptance is heavier. In my case, it wasn’t.
And don’t worry too much about it. I’ve found that every individual has to move on eventually. They may not turn around to sing your praises, but they might just leave you to your business. In the best case scenario, they may even take a look inside and appreciate having to have faced this stain in both your collective pasts.