Smack Talk

I recently learned that someone has been talking behind my back, telling people to avoid me. This person apparently said that I was crazy, and I had no control over my kids, and people shouldn’t be my friend.

When I first was told this, I was angry. But then I just got sad. For the other person, not for me.

Not everyone has to like me or be my friend. I’m totally okay with that. I don’t like everybody I meet either.

And not everyone has to like my kids. I think they’re the bees knees, of course, and — with Dan — the best things to ever happen to me. As to them not being “in control”, well, I have publicly admitted to having trouble with one of them. I’m learning.

But I don’t think it’s cool to tell other people not to like me because you don’t like me. You can say, “Well, I don’t like her.” I have said this about other people. (I’m not proud of this.) But I’ve never said, “I don’t like her so you shouldn’t either.”

Not since grade school, anyway.

And that brings me to this: We often talk about social media or the blogging community as “being like high school” or being a popularity contest. But it’s not. Unless you are actually under 18 and still in high school, don’t treat other people on Facebook or Twitter or in the blog-o-sphere — or IRL, for that matter — as if we are all still in high school.

For the most part we are all adults who will be friends with people we want to be friends with. We will read or not read whom we want; we will comment or not comment, follow or not, “friend” or not as we see fit.

Believe me, I don’t consider myself above the fray. But I don’t talk smack about other people. It’s just not the kind of person I am. I would like the same courtesy extended my way. Please and thank you.

And just leave my kids out of it.

Great minds talk about ideas; average minds talk about events; and small minds talk about people. — Eleanor Roosevelt

17 thoughts on “Smack Talk

  1. It astonishes me how the Internet reduces so many people to idiocy. It’s like watching formerly respected adults suddenly turn into my two-year-old hurling his milk sippy across the room in a tantrum over nothing. Perhaps because I’ve worked on the ‘net “professionally” for so many years, I don’t see that sort of nonsense; or at least have learned how to avoid such nonsense.

    • Another one of the reasons I was so surprised was because I really thought I had done a good job of, at a personal level, weeding this kind of nonsense out. I thought I had a community of like-minded people in my various streams, and in this one case at least, I was disheartened to learn I was wrong.

  2. What what WHAT?!

    I do not understand this at all and you are now the second person in the last several months to tell me that this has happened to them. I don’t get it. You are an awesome individual and I’m really glad I met you.

    • Well, thank you, and I hope you know the feeling is mutual.

      I think most of my surprise and dismay came from the fact that I just don’t do this. I’m not perfect or a saint, and I’ve been guilty of my own gossip mongering to a certain extent. I’ll totally cop to that. The personal attack in the comments that were repeated to me caught me totally off-guard. I’m kind of glad I was told about it, but at the same time… “ignorance is bliss” is a cliche for a reason! 🙂

  3. Like Cari you are the second person I have had told me that it has happened to them. What the forky fork? We are adults! If you don’t like someone, don’t be around them, don’t follow/friend them, and be done with it. If you are around them, be civil. Smile and nod.Don’t people realize it makes them look awful?

  4. You’re the 5th person in the last several weeks who I’ve learned this has happened to. You have to wonder about people. I can’t say it any better than you did in the post so I’ll just say: “SECONDED! TIMES INFINITY.”

  5. I agree with you, RPM. If I don’t like someone, they’ll never know it, because they’ll never hear from me. I just disappear and go elsewhere. And I never tease people I don’t like, either. I know… a dubious honor indeed.

    I get so pessimistic about our country every time I dare read “Comments” on pretty much any news or entertainment story. Guaranteed, within 10 comments, you’ll have people fighting about stupid stuff. Why must everything devolve into an internet pissing contest?

    Sometimes, I think I liked it better when you could sit back, believe the best about your fellow man and never see evidence to the contrary.

    • Yeah, reading comments on news sites does fill me with dismay. Try not to read too many. 🙂

      I love the Internet, and social media. I have made no secret about how important it’s been in my life. Having kids, moving to the suburbs, having a husband who works long hours, and being a SAHM for a while were terribly isolating, and without blogs and then Twitter, it would have been so much worse. I felt like I could be a part of a community, which I really needed.

      That said, the Internet has brought out ugliness, too. People automatically have a forum they didn’t have before. You just have to learn to take the good — and FIND the good — with the bad, which you can always walk away from. Even when it’s hard.

  6. As someone who has babysat your kids, I really don’t know why someone would do this… Your kids are active… But they were FINE! I know you have your issues, all parents seem to have them. As a non-parent, I can’t begin to judge you on those issues, never would, never will. You do the best you can.

    But I have noticed lately the high school-ness of the interwebz. It has made me kind of sad for quite some time.

    Love you lady, and the kids. And Dan. Even M, who I haven’t met yet! You are all great! I hate my busy schedule! I need to see my friends babies soooo soon!

    • Oh, you’re going to love M. he’s a sweet heart!

      And thanks. As to how I and my children were characterized: I leave a lot of it here on this blog. Yes, my kids are active, and outgoing, and they can get wound up and a little crazy. And i’m learning my way through it, and how to deal with it. And, yes, too, I have had issues with anxiety and depression, so maybe I come off as “crazy”. But I’d rather talk about these things and have them in the light. Because I’m sure I am not alone.

      I hope we get to see you soon, too. Life is busy, that’s for sure!

  7. One of my favorite quotes from Alice in Wonderland (been watching it a lot lately)
    Alice to her father: “Do you think I am completely mad?”
    Father to Alice: “why yes, but you know all the best people are.”
    🙂

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