I was given great advice ages ago when I was about twelve and freaking out at my mom for her reading my diary, “If you don’t want it read, don’t write it down.”
Now that philosophy is one I draw back on a ton now. When I was little the only real writing like that kids did was in journals, but nowadays kids have blogs, texting, Facebook, Twitter and so on. Some of the things I see younger kids write (I have a ton of teen and preteen friends on Facebook from kids I know at church and through my younger siblings) I have to stop and think “Really? You want the world to know that?” I can’t tell you how many times I’ve had to call my younger sister (14) and tell her she might want to rethink what she just posted to Facebook. One time she actually posted her cell number and said she’s bored and home alone she was open to anyone calling. I seriously went off on her for that.
As some of you might know, my brain filter – you know the one that says “Trish shut your freaking mouth!!” – it ain’t the best. lol I tend to speak/type things and then think of the consequences that might arise. Most of the time, I don’t care. Really, I don’t. I too get phone calls from relatives about things I should not post to Facebook. For example, my grandmother called and gave me a long lecture on why I should remove my status update that jokingly said I was going to beat the boys if they didn’t get to work on their room. For the record – I don’t beat my children. It was a joke, even ended with “lol.” Nor do I think any of my friends would take that remark seriously from me. But to make her happy I removed the update.
There’s a down side though to people thinking they should filter their every thought and word.
I’m not sure how many of you know, but I’m like addicted to digital scrapbooking. I’ve been doing it for a bit over three years now. I think it’s a great way to be creative, preserve your memories, and express yourself. One of the main things I hear people have problems with is journaling on their pages. (For those not in the know – that would be writing the story that goes with the page.) That always stumps me. HOW can you have a problem with doing that? You just write down what you remember about what happened, or you write down the thoughts that go along with the idea of the page. But people have gotten so censored in what they think and do, wondering “Is that too sappy? Will it anger someone else? Will people think I’m a bad parent because I laughed and took the picture before I corrected my child?” That they can’t seem to do it. And yes, I do think this thought censoring is the problem scrappers have with journaling.
I don’t care what people will think when they read what I write on my pages.
I just want to be able to look back and remember WHY I wanted to record that memory. Why I chose THAT picture. WHAT that picture or event made me FEEL. I don’t make the pages for everyone else, I make them for me, thus, I don’t care what everyone else is going to think. Do I care if everyone and their momma might read what I wrote? No. It’s not because I’m brave (which I get told in comments on my pages - “Oh how brave of you to write all that down/share all of that!”), it’s because that’s who I am and what I think and I’m confident enough in myself to not care if someone else thinks it’s stupid, cheesy, or wrong of me.
Yeah some filtering of your thoughts is good, and yeah, there are some things you should not share, but sometimes you need to remove that filter and just be yourself.