Have I Lost My Blogging Friends?

Have I Lost My Blogging Friends?

So I’ve been busy, much busier than usual, in my real life, interacting with people in the flesh, which overstimulates me, so I haven’t been reading and commenting on other blog posts like I usually do, like I used to do.

The posts I published Wednesday received few comments. I wonder, is it because I have let down my online community of mutually supportive readers by not reading and commenting on their posts? Or, is it because my posts were not personal or particularly original in nature — just a rehash of a conference I attended Friday and Saturday and a repost of a TIME, Inc. infographic about why we still need Women’s Equality Day ? Perhaps my last post was simply too long (and boring, I now realize in going back and reading it).

I’ve been feeling guilty for not reading and commenting as much on other blogs, but I can only do so much, and taking care of myself comes first. I respond to comments on my blog. But, there are simply too many other blogs to read them all. I’m not even reading those with whom I’ve developed close online friendships.

Writing helps me. Consuming seemingly endless numbers of mental health posts, commenting on them and sharing them, unfortunately, does not. Perhaps doing so helps others, just not me. Not when I’m too overwhelmed. Not when I’m doing my best to slow down.

By the way, did some more in person volunteering. Once again trying to figure this one out. How much in-person social interaction and volunteering I can take on without spinning like a hypomanic top.

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132 thoughts on “Have I Lost My Blogging Friends?

  1. Lizzy August 28, 2015 / 9:42 am

    I can certainly understand that you would want to be able to respond to comments readers post as well as be able to comment on blogs you follow. I get this way, too. Like I had said once before; I do not fully understand what you are going through, but I really think you (and so many other writers, no matter the media type) need to give yourself a break and give yourself credit for all you are doing. If you get a comment on a post – great! If not, do not read into it that you have not written something interesting or relevant. We write what we write. It is what it is.

    You are a sweet gal, Kitt. Keep doing what you do. But be kind to yourself!

    God bless!

    Liked by 3 people

    • Kitt O'Malley August 28, 2015 / 11:03 am

      Thank you and God bless you.
      I agree that writing is what I need do. Not worry about feedback or popularity. We get caught up in numbers like it is some sort of a game that we need win.
      At heart, I’m a performer, even as I play myself, who gets up on stage and thrives on the applause. Honestly, the diva in me desires fame. Perhaps being somewhat narcissistic (insecure and desperate for attention and admiration) is not a great personality trait, but I am. So be it. I am who I am.

      Liked by 2 people

  2. hirundine608 August 28, 2015 / 8:53 am

    Hey, I’ve been away and only using the iPad. So, if I missed saying …” happy birthday”? The fault was all mine!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Kitt O'Malley August 28, 2015 / 10:52 am

      Thank you for the belated happy birthday. No need to apologize, Hirundine (not sure if that’s your actual name, but want to personalize my response). It is challenging to type on an iPad, isn’t it?

      Hope you had a lovely holiday! Welcome back.

      Liked by 1 person

      • hirundine608 August 28, 2015 / 2:54 pm

        Hi Kitt,
        Yes it is. I find it easier with the thing turned sideways. What is more difficult is using “text expander”. Which uses hot keys for things like salutations, etc. My name is Jamie BTW. Cheers, Jamie

        Liked by 1 person

        • Kitt O'Malley August 28, 2015 / 3:27 pm

          I’m sorry, Jamie. I should know that. You’ve signed your name before. I am TERRIBLE with names. I regularly call my son my husband’s name, and my husband my son’s name.

          Liked by 1 person

          • hirundine608 August 28, 2015 / 7:35 pm

            Hi Kitt,
            No biggie. Hirundine is fine anyway. It sort of means, flying swallow? Or “like a swallow” is probably more accurate?

            Just so long as it’s not, late for lunch? Cheers Jamie.

            Liked by 1 person

  3. susurrus August 28, 2015 / 7:32 am

    I read many of your posts but I’m not always sure that ‘Like’ is an appropriate response. If there were buttons labelled ‘I admire you’, or ‘I love reading your posts’ or ‘Good luck!’, I’d press them all like a shot.

    Often I wish I could say something comforting or meaningful, but I feel inadequate to advise. You’ve given me so much insight into your life, your challenges & achievements and I am sorry I haven’t made it more clear.

    The truth is I often ‘Like’ posts but I rarely comment. If I have something specific to say, other than ‘I like this’, I tend not to be concise. I wanted to add my voice to the others here and I hope you can see that you are appreciated, even if it doesn’t always feel that way.

    Liked by 3 people

    • Kitt O'Malley August 28, 2015 / 10:47 am

      Thank you SO much. Bottom line, I suppose, is that I’m apparently incredibly insecure and thrive on positive feedback. At heart, I’m a performer, even as I play myself, who gets up on stage and thrives on the applause.

      I must do what is best for me. Writing helps me get crowded and racing thoughts out of my head. Putting them down on the page and massaging them into some sort of meaningful post helps me organize my thought process. I do a lot of rewriting before I publish a post.

      Thank you again for your supportive comment. I greatly appreciate it.

      Like

  4. vanbytheriver August 28, 2015 / 7:07 am

    The downturn in comments is a function of this time of year. We have all experienced it, with summer vacations, back to school issues, etc. The ones who matter to you the most will always return. No worries. Take care of yourself !!

    Liked by 2 people

    • Kitt O'Malley August 28, 2015 / 10:42 am

      Thank you, Van. August is holiday season. Why they schedule conferences this time of year is beyond me. I, too, have a kid returning to school.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Just Plain Ol' Vic August 28, 2015 / 5:37 am

    Speaking personally, I typically “like” a post to acknowledge that I have read it. However if I do not have anything of substance to say, I typically do not comment. I just don’t like to write a generic “good post” comment.

    Liked by 3 people

    • Kitt O'Malley August 28, 2015 / 10:41 am

      Vic, you rock! No need to explain yourself. Sorry I haven’t read or commented so much on your recent posts.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Just Plain Ol' Vic August 28, 2015 / 10:45 am

        No worries Kitt. I think that was one of the “lessons” I have learned as a blogger is that I cannot expect engagement from everyone. We all have lives and the world doesn’t revolve around my blog (gasp!!), lol.

        You have an awesome blog and there are times too when I simply lurk as opposed to being active.

        Liked by 1 person

        • Kitt O'Malley August 28, 2015 / 11:10 am

          Vic, you are INCREDIBLY active, especially given that you work outside the home, your wife has bipolar disorder, and you are the father of two active kids!

          Liked by 1 person

  6. trentpmcd August 28, 2015 / 4:43 am

    I think people are taking a blogging holiday this week. I’ve had single digit views every day, something that hasn’t happened in well over a year, actually since January of 2014, 3 months into my blog. But then, I’ve been like you – I’ve done very little reading and commenting recently and perhaps everyone is striking back.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Kitt O'Malley August 28, 2015 / 10:40 am

      Probably true on both accounts. Thank you. Content such as yours – fiction and art – can be relaxing and enjoyable, offering an escape from our woes. Something I could use more of, actually.

      Liked by 1 person

  7. abodyofhope August 28, 2015 / 4:02 am

    Hi Kitt, I have had to pull way back from reading and commenting on my favorite blogs, unfortunately. In turn, I have noticed a big change in blogger readership and interaction on my own page. In the end, I began blogging to write. The wonderful community I found on WordPress is a bonus. I hope you will continue writing and even if you aren’t always able to keep up with your blogging friends.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Kitt O'Malley August 28, 2015 / 10:36 am

      Blogging to write is how I began. Trying to build a readership by reading and commenting on other blogs is how I grew, but at a huge cost to myself. Doing so takes WAY too much time and energy. Some of the reading can be triggering. Just doing so much reading, trying to keep up, is overwhelming. Your advice is wise. Taking care of ourselves is our top priority.

      Liked by 1 person

  8. Indah Susanti August 28, 2015 / 3:07 am

    Could that be because of the summer holiday season and those who stay are busy covering their colleagues (like myself 😦 )? My traffic is lower than usual this July and August. Just continue blogging, don’t let this thing stops your creativity.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Kitt O'Malley August 28, 2015 / 10:34 am

      Thank you, Indah. Honestly, I think that part of it has to do with content. People who read mental health blogs respond to personal content more than to educational content. People identify with the stories we tell.

      Your content is art. Your photographs take me to a world I would otherwise never see. For those of you reading this – check out Indah’s underwater photography, it’s breathtaking.

      August in Europe is even more of a holiday than it is in the US. No doubt that would slow down your traffic. Fools. They should still look at your photos and dream of SCUBA diving and immersing themselves in that glorious underwater world.

      Liked by 1 person

  9. lydiaa1614 August 28, 2015 / 2:40 am

    Dear Kitt, you have not lost me for sure. I totally know what you have been going through and the last week I have been in a terrible depression (which has lifted tonight!!). I am way behind in reading other people’s blogs and am now trying to catch up. Please don’t feel guilty and don’t stop writing….when you can. I would miss you very much!

    Liked by 2 people

    • Kitt O'Malley August 28, 2015 / 10:29 am

      Please, likewise, don’t feel guilty for having not read when you were depressed, nor feel that you need catch up on everyone’s blog posts. Take care of yourself. That is very much our greatest obligation. Welcome back from your depression. I’m glad to hear that you are feeling better. I won’t stop writing. I just must do less reading.

      Liked by 1 person

      • lydiaa1614 August 28, 2015 / 10:41 am

        There’s nothing wrong with less reading. My life coach told me awhile back that my full time job is to look after my health. So yes, it is our greatest obligation!

        Liked by 1 person

  10. Leslie August 28, 2015 / 1:51 am

    Like Zoe, I often don’t read blogs with a lot of links. Not because I don’t appreciate the effort someone has made to educate me, but because keeping up with that education makes me so anxious for a variety of reasons.
    You have to do what you feel is the best thing for you. If you’ve been wanting to explore life irl then you need to honor that. Follow that. Be in it and try to keep yourself there. If that means you pay a little less attention to your blog, then so be it. We, the mental illness sufferers often feel a desire to get back to a life that we lived before. A life out of the shadows, a life in the sun, a life where we left our houses and DID things. If you are experiencing that now, than I don’t think you should feel guilty. We have enough guilt in ourselves to go around the world multiple times.

    Do not feel guilty because you are feeling better.

    Liked by 5 people

    • Kitt O'Malley August 28, 2015 / 10:06 am

      Beautifully said. Love the imagery in your comment. Thank you not only for its wisdom, but for how well you wrote it. I truly enjoy excellent writing.

      Liked by 1 person

  11. Sarah's Attic of Treasures August 28, 2015 / 1:44 am

    Kitt, I understand where you are coming from.
    I am one of those who seldom seem to get to your blog. The comments on mine are keeping me pretty busy…..I love it and since I am in the hospital, it’s been a life saver. Interacting with others right now.
    I am very glad to here how productive you have been. You have actually gotten out and met people. I haven’t wanted to meet any one face to face in a long time.
    Not anyone new.
    Keep writing as you have been. It is what excites you.
    I doubt if you have lost any bloggers or if you have it’s the odd one or 2.
    Keep doing what makes you happy.
    Hugs Sarah

    Liked by 2 people

    • Kitt O'Malley August 28, 2015 / 10:05 am

      Thank you, Sarah. Bless you. I know too well how tough it is to get out and meet new people. It can be exhausting. I hope that this comment finds you healing.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Sarah's Attic of Treasures August 28, 2015 / 2:14 pm

        Mentally, I am doing good overall. I’ve had a few lows but then it is to be expected. I am doing better as far as the lupus /fibro /flare goes. Just praying I don’t need surgery on my ankle /foot.
        All is good.
        Have a great weekend. HUGS

        Liked by 1 person

        • Kitt O'Malley August 28, 2015 / 3:25 pm

          I will pray for you and your ankle and foot. Relax and have a wonderful weekend. HUGS right back at you.

          Chronic illnesses suck. My son struggles with chronic illnesses. Breaks my heart that I cannot take away the pain, that I cannot strengthen his compromised immune system.

          Liked by 1 person

              • Sarah's Attic of Treasures August 28, 2015 / 7:28 pm

                Poor kid. I have had them since 1987. I lost a lot of my memory and speech skills from them. For a child to get them is much worse….:(

                Liked by 1 person

                • Kitt O'Malley August 28, 2015 / 7:52 pm

                  He has a poor immune system, too. We are working on that with his immunologist and taking him Children’s Hospital’s Metabolic Clinic to screen for an underlying metabolic disorder. He may be heir to hemochromatosis, a genetic metabolic disorder which both I and my husband may carry. ALPIM (Anxiety-Laxity-Pain-Immune-Mood) is a newly defined spectrum syndrome which describes the constellation of symptoms he lives with.

                  Like

  12. Zoe August 28, 2015 / 1:25 am

    I have this automatic filtering mechanism in my eyes where I skim posts that are reblogs or informative (data and research) unless the title really captures my interest. Since for the most part I feel like data and statistics fail to represent me in the madness, it’s my auto response to skip.

    Now there was a bug going around a month or so back where people began disappearing from the reader feed. It could be that you posted at a time of day that just didn’t get much traffic that day.

    At any rate, happy to see you’ve been productive and taking care of yourself. Keeping up with blogs is like a part time job, especially if you follow too many. I only hit that follow button for about 60 and that’s overwhelming as it is. I used to have a very popular blog on other platform and it took 40 hours a week to manage it and my readers. I burned out in a year. It’s not worth it. This should be a therapeutic and rewarding experience. Do what you must to keep it that way!

    Liked by 6 people

      • Billy August 28, 2015 / 2:09 am

        I had to stop myself from reading all the comments 🙂 Between my scarce internet connection and theoretically having a lot of work to get done, I try to read as few blogs as possible (keeping them as relevant to me as possible) but that’s hard as many are so interesting. Then, if I read, I tend to just like something to signify I came by, I read you, and I’m liking what you said, but unless the post leads me to comment something specific, I tend not to just comment for the sake of it.
        I simply don’t have the time to click through on every link, and sometimes the subject may interest me but I don’t want to go into it right now: for example, what you’re doing, is AWESOME. And as I have given up on the idea of working outside, I am seriously thinking that when all this is over, and I have been diagnosed, and I finish translating my books, or at some point, I’d like to try volunteering and getting out there. So in actual fact I am extremely interested in your outdoor activities, in seeing how it goes for you. However, I just read. Often reading on mobile means that it takes five minutes to load the post, and it would take five more to be able to comment, and five more to wait for that comment to go through. So I just don’t.
        I say all this because combined with the above there are many reasons why you may not get lots of comments: but please don’t let it stop you from writing!

        Liked by 3 people

        • Kitt O'Malley August 28, 2015 / 10:15 am

          Thank you. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you for taking the time to comment on this post. I’m reading your most recent post right now, the one about getting a diagnosis and going on disability. I must say that the issues you are struggling with now at the beginning of your mental health diagnosis and disability journey are issues I still struggle with today, a decade after I was hospitalized and got on disability. That struggle is real. It is not easy to give up our prior identity as productive workers. We mourn. The loss is real.

          Liked by 2 people

          • Billy August 28, 2015 / 10:55 am

            It is very true. That is also why I really admire what you’re doing with your volunteering work, and I can imagine how hard it is too. xx

            Liked by 1 person

    • stuffthatneedssaying August 28, 2015 / 8:37 am

      Agree on the automatic filtering. I don’t have any interest in reblogged posts. I don’t mind following a link within a longer post that was inspired by it, but the reblogging function makes me feel like the poster didn’t have anything original to say. I tend to prefer posts about personal experiences – I gloss over anything vaguely political or full of general facts.

      Liked by 2 people

      • Kitt O'Malley August 28, 2015 / 10:50 am

        Thank you. It’s good to know what makes a difference, what hits home. No doubt people read posts about personal experiences. We thrive on stories with which we can identify or which intrigue us. Those stories teach compassion for ourselves and for others. We all struggle and triumph in one way or another.

        Like

    • Kitt O'Malley August 28, 2015 / 9:58 am

      I agree completely with doing what helps me and that I most enjoy. Posts that are more personal in nature definitely engage more, for we can connect to them.

      Like

  13. Gertie August 28, 2015 / 1:23 am

    Kitt,
    We all have lives outside of the blogging community. It is a little disappointing when you think a post will get comments and it doesn’t. I’ve learned to not expect comments on any of my post and if they get one I am excited about it. We are both bloggers that would love to have a dialog going on our blogs and at times it is more difficult to do so.

    Liked by 3 people

    • Kitt O'Malley August 28, 2015 / 9:55 am

      Thank you, Gertie, for getting it. Unfortunately, I haven’t been able to keep up with your blog. You always have great content.

      Liked by 1 person

  14. Raeyn August 28, 2015 / 12:59 am

    I’m a rubbish commenter, so I don’t worry too much about not getting much reciprocated back. And I also try to be mindful that we’re all mentally ill and have good days and bad days, and sometimes that means you don’t hear from people. En masse? ‘Tis the season for so-called reverse SAD. That tends to take out a goodly swathe of the Bipolaratti from what I’ve seen.

    Not sure where I’m going with any of that. So it goes, it goes. ❤

    Liked by 5 people

    • Kitt O'Malley August 28, 2015 / 9:54 am

      So I’m not the only one ramping? Good to keep in mind.

      Like

  15. dyane August 28, 2015 / 12:20 am

    You got me, babe….I related to this post. !!!
    I try to remind myself that it’s about the quality of my blog friends, not the quantity or amount of replies, but sometimes I get bummed out about it all.

    Anyway, gotta get to sleep but I keep looping about dysfunttional family members…time for 25 mg of Seroquel. Love you!!!

    Liked by 4 people

    • Kitt O'Malley August 28, 2015 / 9:51 am

      I noticed that you, too, were up late last night. Not good for either of us, but my usual bedtime is between 10:30 to 11:30, yours is earlier. Either way, it doesn’t help my sleep to be online at that time. Far better for me to be reading a good novel on a dark screen.

      Liked by 1 person

      • dyane August 28, 2015 / 12:23 pm

        I’m so f*cking tired that it’s ridiculous. I took Wedny K. Williamson’s advice and got a blue screen for my Kindle but I don’t know how much it helps… we have the heat wave here and yesterday it was 100 degrees which also makes me feel wiped out – I want to go stay with Greg Archer in Maui. Too bad they have that dog quarantine!

        Liked by 1 person

        • Kitt O'Malley August 28, 2015 / 2:09 pm

          I use the Kindle app on my iPad and the app has a black screen in which you can adjust the text’s brightness to a dark grey. It helps, without doubt. Plus, the act of reading fiction takes my mind off bipolar disorder and mental illness, giving me a break.

          Liked by 1 person

  16. badhalolife August 28, 2015 / 12:18 am

    Relax. Breathe.
    I feel the same way about my blog readers but I guess people are just busy..
    Everything is so go go go and sometimes we don’t have time to read our emails, let alone have some chill out time catching up on blogs. I think the world is only getting busier so maybe we need to change our blog formats or the way we advertise the content in order to reach more peeps or make it easier to read?
    Still live your work hon!

    Liked by 2 people

    • Kitt O'Malley August 28, 2015 / 9:49 am

      Thank you. More important to chill out and enjoy writing than stress out about the numbers game.

      Liked by 1 person

  17. jaklumen August 28, 2015 / 12:15 am

    Trade ya, Kitt. I’m in mind-melting pain. Collapsing spinal disc between L4 & L5, and swelling around the bone graft of L5/S1. I can’t seem to squeeze out hardly ANY blog posts. Not to mention I’m just not on the right frequency that gets many comments. Wait… I wouldn’t wish this awfulness on anyone, but, y’know? You’ve got the blog thing more figured out than I do.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Kitt O'Malley August 28, 2015 / 12:20 am

      Thank you, Jak. Honestly, I’ve worked an inordinate number of hours a day on many social platforms to get to this point. But I’ve spread myself so thin and overextended myself so much that I’m brnung out – not so much in writing, but in consuming.

      Like

  18. Liliana Risovic August 27, 2015 / 11:57 pm

    I’m not a blogger but I like to read blog …. lately your blog too. I like it. But I don´t comment at all.

    I find it helps me personally. And you can not lose your friends who love to read what you write.
    I do not know the rules of bloggers and what it means to be a blogger friend. For me, the important content and topic.

    Liked by 3 people

    • Kitt O'Malley August 28, 2015 / 12:13 am

      Thank you, Liliana. I’m glad you enjoy what I write.

      Like

  19. michelletoussaint August 27, 2015 / 11:45 pm

    I’ve had the same problem and experienced the same thing, almost as if you’ve been forgotten by the bloggosphere. Except for the faithful few, nobody stops by like they used to, but I guess all we can do is interact when we have the time, and hope for the best.

    Liked by 3 people

  20. mihrank August 27, 2015 / 11:41 pm

    that’s indeed a good question – Blogger, friends don’t even reply back…They some time mention ” Thank you” and no more…I wish your post will bring much more respect.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Kitt O'Malley August 28, 2015 / 12:10 am

      My readers always show great respect and love. That’s why I wonder if I’m letting them down. I want to return in favor what they give me, but I’m not always able to do so.

      Liked by 1 person

      • mihrank August 28, 2015 / 12:12 am

        Kitt – your last words are correct – I feel the same, you completely disappeared from sharing your comments with me, even the special link you once created, its no longer active…As you know, I always respect you.

        Like

        • Kitt O'Malley August 28, 2015 / 12:17 am

          I am so sorry. I was so over-extended. I still am. I simply cannot maintain following so many wonderful blogs. I can respond to comments on my blog, but I’ve had to cut way back on reading other blogs. I’m only capable of doing so much. As is, I’m so active that I’m hypomanic.

          Like

          • mihrank August 28, 2015 / 12:26 am

            Kitt, I deeply understand and support you ….Of course, you have such amazing blogs and you are very active….

            Liked by 1 person

          • hirundine608 September 2, 2015 / 6:35 am

            Surely would that be hyper-maniac? Hypo usually means less or below. As in Hypoglycaemic? Medical terms usually confuse me. … Cheers Jamie.

            Liked by 1 person

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