Saturday, December 08, 2007

Working out why move

With my other journaling site, I was part of a community, but it is a community that doesn't meet my needs and reinforces a response that I'd rather were different. This is an issue about me, not that community.

I had the sense of peering, peeping almost, into the lives of people in a way that isolated me instead of connecting me to them. They weren't writing to me, not the way a private letter or a direct conversation communicates (and likewise for the most part I wasn't directing my thoughts at them), anymore than the author of a book I like has written it to me. The response I have is internal: they don't know about it despite having contributed to it, unless I share it. They are not obligated in any way by my response.

Because I already tend to choose to feel isolated over feeling connected (this is a choice I am just barely aware of at a conscious level despite years of work on it), this false sense of community that I created by imagining my responses mattered to the people whose work I was reading damages my ability to connect to real friends.

This is my issue because I read a lot of blogs and journals, and I easily fell into a one-way relationship with people who are unaware, or barely aware, of my existence. I have dear friends whose lives I follow online, but the model and terminology used especially by Livejournal helped me blur the distinction between them and the relative strangers, the objects of my one-way friendship fantasy. Because I don't like the results of that, I'm changing how I read and how I communicate.


Irfon-Kim Ahmad said...

In these posts about communication, I've been having a hard time figuring out if you want comments on your blog or not. (Like, I can see that you allow them, but I don't know what your feelings about them are.)

Kai Jones said...

I do want comments. I turned off comments on one post, and I'll probably turn them off on all the autobiographical ones, because that is hard work and I am vulnerable there.

Irfon-Kim Ahmad said...

Okay, thanks! That's good to know.