Sunday, January 23, 2005

Request for advice

This is actually my second blog. The first consisted mostly of my venting about fertility, family, and life in general (okay, not so different from now!), and I decided I should get a fresh start in case I wanted to share the blog with anyone I know outside the internet - specifically, in case I want to allow my parents and in-laws to read the blog. I considered this in the hopes that by reading the blog they’d better understand what’s going on with us, and that I wouldn’t have to repeat the same information several times. I know there are people in blogland who share their blog with some members of their families, and others who are careful to keep the two separate. I’m curious what people’s thoughts are on this. Is it a terrible idea to share the blog with family? Do you end up censoring yourself?

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Case in point - [I’ll consider deleting this if ever I give access to the in-laws, even though they were there for the conversation.]

Setting: In the car on a long drive with J and his parents (visiting from out of town)

Conversation goes something like this:

Me: So, um, I wanted to mention that I know you’re trying, but telling me over and over that losing weight would help us get pregnant is really not at all helpful. I’d appreciate it if that didn’t get pulled out as if it’s the cause of this situation.

MIL: Well, it’s true that weight has an impact on fertility.

Me: (gets ready to bang head on a wall, can’t find wall, looks at J for help)

J: That’s really not the point.

Me: While that’s true in general, it’s not a useful piece of advice for me. [And even if it were, you’ve already told me several times.] My weight is a SYMPTOM of my PCOS and is exacerbated by the fertility drugs [and my depression over the fertility problems].

MIL: Yes, but weight is still really important.

Me: [deep breath, count to 10]Yes, but it’s not helpful for you to tell me that anymore. I have several doctors and an acupuncturist working with me on these issues - including rethinking the categories of food that I consume. Besides which, our fertility problems aren’t just with me. There are some... sperm issues.... too. [Why don’t you tell HIM to work on HIS weight?]

J: Maybe she doesn’t know the rules.

MIL: The rules?

Me: Oh yes, the rules. Number 1 - Don’t try to be my doctor. I already have several, thank you. Please just be family. Number 2 - Don’t assume I’m in the mood to talk about this - I may be, and I may not be, and there’s no real way of knowing. That’s just how it is. Number 3 [They had already herad this one.] - If we want someone to know about our fertility issues, WE will tell them. This is not your job. [Note: Things have improved a lot with my mother since introducing these rules - hopefully the same will be true for MIL.]

I do think she got it, in the end, but it was frustrating how long it took. That being said - please, no harsh comments about my MIL. She means well, and she’s trying, and I’m not angry with her nor do I want anyone else to be. It’s just one of those sticky situations we have from time to time.

So, is is a bad idea to share the blog with them? Or will it be a useful way of communicating without engaging in these sorts of conversations over and over? Am I going to end up censoring myself?

10 comments:

  1. I think you answered your own question when you said you'd delete the last section of the post if you shared your blog. We all have well meaning families but there are times when they'll say something stupid and you'll need the online support from people who understand. Just my 2 cents.

    Rosanne

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  2. The similarities between my mother and your MIL are uncanny. I initially gave my mom access to my blog for the same reasons that you cite, but then moved it because I found myself considering her reaction every time I wrote something. I don't know if this would happen in your case, but from what you write, it very well might.

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  3. I don't think that allowing them to read your blog will necessarily help matters--and it could very well make it more difficult for you, i.e. censoring yourself. I think that the assvice doled out by friend and family members is just one of those things. They will never ever really understand what you're dealing with, even if they do read about it, and thus will never stop saying stupid things, although they nearly always mean well. But, now your rules idea has a much better chance of success. Can I may borrow them?

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  4. Cass, my MIL is just like your MIL when it comes to weight and pcos. She and her sisters are uber fertile, and as a result, so are all the 2nd generation of daughters. They're also skinny but tend to enjoy their food a bit, so they don't understand why even after seeing a dietician and exercising I wasn't as skinny as they were after a mere 12 weeks on WW.

    I've tried. Really, really tried to explain PCOS. I tried to explain intra-uterine growths and blood restrictions. I've tried everything except for the powerpoint presentation I've been making should we ever need to REALLY get it through to them.

    While I think it's lovely that you'd like to share your journey with her and the rest of your family, I just don't think it's as theraputic to always have to watch your words, your phrasing (lest someone get their feelings hurt) and any bad feelings your having.

    But then again, that's just me and how I found I dealt with having uber fertile inlaws. I hope it works out for you whatever you choose.

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  5. I chose not to share my blog with anyone in "real life" because I would surely have self-censored--even J. doesn't read it, though I came clean a few months ago and told him that I have a blog.

    I need a place to vent, to complain, to seek thoughtful answers and compassionate solace, and I don't think friends and family would understand. Then again, I didn't even let them know we wanted to have kids--much less that we were trying and failing--till quite recently.

    Anyway, just my two cents...

    --Bugs

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  6. I'd say no - i told people about mine and now have to self-censor, which sucks.

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  7. I say that if it will cause you to censor, then don;t share. You deserve a forum where you can type ANYTHING you want.

    Personally, I write what i feel and let the chips fall. Subsequently, I have not gone out of my way to tell my ILs about my blogs. But ... if they find them, they find them. I'm not a hurtful person. Everyhting I write about people is true.

    Great blog, BTW, keep it up and don't get into a place where you have to delete your words!

    -Blue (the Thrifty Mom blog)

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  8. Telling = censorship for me, so I don't tell anyone. No one. Blog? What's a blog?

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  9. I'm with Mare about telling family. My husband doesn't even know. This is my space, for me, for my thoughts.

    So, if anyone asks... Blog? Really? People have personal diaries on the web? I'll have to check on that...

    Marla
    Middle Way

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  10. One more vote for not telling. My mom knows I have a blog, as does my husband, but neither has read it. My ILs do not really understand the internet, so I'm not worried on that front!

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