Survivor Journals

Survivor Journals:   Year I

Round I     by Paulineee

From the Survivor Journals Home Page:

Survivor Journals is all about community...a group of writers who share in the pleasure of writing our thoughts, our beliefs, our fears and even our dreams. That we do this online adds to the equation the interaction with our readers and other journallers.

But why are we here? Why do we do it? How has having an online journal impacted our lives? How do we explain it to the people that we know that view it as odd...risky...or just downright wrong?

Here is the challenge for week one. I am the last person in the world who you would want to find your journal. I just read through the entire contents of it and have contacted you...furious..hurt, confused and devastated.

1. Who am I? Why am I the last person you would want to read this journal.

2. What would you tell me. How would you explain this perceived act of distrust, betrayal and hurt?

One of the most difficult parts of answering this question is figuring out who would be the last person on earth I would want to read my journal. If I had written this a year ago, the list of "last people" would have been very long. I didn't want anyone outside of those who wrote or habitually read journals to see mine. That wasn't because of the content, but because of my insecurities about the whole process. Keeping an online journal is a pretty crazy thing to do, after all.

Gradually I relaxed and invited people to read it and now there isn't really anyone that stands out as having me terrified that they'd find it. Why must it be assumed that every journal has instances that would be hurtful to someone? I'm Canadian after all and we are nothing if not very, very nice.

So anyway I browsed through the archives and the best (worst) that I can come up with is (are) the niece and nephew from New York State.

I wouldn't want them to find the journal because of the comments I made about how they're raising their daughter.

The first time I commented on that was over a year ago, in this entry.

The baby was one and a half then, and already the boss of the house. That to me is just wrong.

There were two more entries, July 27 and July 29 of this year when they visited again. It may have been imprudent of me to refer to the child as "the demon spawn" in the titles of the entries; it seemed appropriate at the time.

So, what would I tell them; how would I explain it.

--Um, you weren't supposed to find it?

No good.. I know they're online and I did nothing to specifically hide the journal from them.

--Um, it's my diary and I can write what I want?

No good.. even though I used no names, anyone who knows me in person would know who they are. My right to express myself ends where their right not to be embarrassed or criticized in public begins.

--Um, I needed something to write about and you were it?


--Ok, serious try:
I use the journal to spell out my thoughts, opinions, and philosophy of whatever I find important enough to comment on.

I was (and am) troubled by certain aspects of how you are raising your child, specifically, indulging her whims more than I feel is appropriate.

Writing about it helps me to gather my thoughts and articulate them; but of course I could do that in private. Making it public forces me to fully think things through as if (heh) others are reading what I write. It also opens up these opinions to debate. If there's something I've overlooked, or if I'm just plain wrong, someone is bound to tell me so.

I have no defence for the "demon spawn" remark.. but you have to admit it was funny.   No?   Well ok you don't have to admit that. The rest was a sincere expression of my concern and my outlook on parenting.

I must admit that if I found someone online commenting on or criticizing the way I discipline my kids, I'd be offended. In retrospect, I should have made the issue more hypothetical, giving fewer details about who the people in question were.

The Eight Other Participating Journals:

And If I Die Before I Wake
Funny The World
Hell Is Other People
Nova Notes
On My Lap & From My Mind
Quiet Moments

Want to surf the entries in ring form? Go here and choose "Ring mode" for any one journal to begin.

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