Sunday, 3 November 2013

The one where my bubble nearly popped

It's kind of been an ugly few weeks.  I'll admit it.  Things I've read and things I have heard have made me wander off into long daydreams about what causes people to behave the way they do.  

I write my blog on the basis that you should be careful what you disclose on the internet because the things you write are likely to remain public for a very long time and you have no way of controlling who will see those musings of yours. 

I am also conscious of keeping my blog a happy and inoffensive space.  Somewhere that I can share the good things that happen to me, so that I can try to gloss over the bad.  I choose not to rant about topical and potentially inflammatory subjects because my blog isn't a soapbox.  It doesn't mean that I don't have views or opinions, it just means that I choose to air them in a more private forum.  I know that I am not alone in my preferences, here.

I am a one-dimensional person to my cyber friends.  That's 'on purpose':  I engineer things to be that way.  I talk about my home, the things I've been making and the things I've been up to.  That's because I like to read about what other people are doing and I like to connect with people over my hobbies and interests.  

There are many things that I don't mention because they are irrelevant to my blog.  I don't talk about my personal circumstances because I assume that they are not interesting to other people.  I am a private person.  I am more of a listener than a talker and I put my trust in very few people.  I am closest to my mum, sister and husband than anyone else in the world.  I can tell them everything and anything; I trust them implicitly.  (Don't get me wrong, I adore my dad but we stick to laughing at each other or having massive debates/disagreements.   He doles out either lectures or cuddles depending on the situation.  We both like it that way.)

I have an Instagram account and I follow the same code of conduct.  Generally, I only share the superficial stuff.  Again, deliberately.

I am often surprised, sometimes shocked (and always amused) to see the things that people publish on the internet.

I am not talking about trolls or cyber-bullies.  Those people deliberately and unashamedly set out to hurt others.  I'm talking about intelligent, ordinary people who use social media sites to complain about things or, worse [shudder], over-share.  

I understand that copying a company into tweets about an unacceptable meal out, a faulty pair of shoes or a late delivery ensures that your complaint goes straight to source and is a means of sorting out a problem with very little effort on your part.  When you complain about your crappy jeans from XShop on twitter, you *want* XShop to read your tweet.  You want them to know you're unhappy:  they will sort out your issue doubly fast because you've publicly outed them and, with a bit of luck, you'll get free stuff, right? I get it.

But when you bitch about your boss, complain about your MIL or declare that you're £s in debt do you *really* want the world to know that?  I have watched, with horror, as colleagues moaned via their smartphones about the fact they haven't received a bonus that year or declared, smugly, that their wife was 'a bit of a goer in the sack'. 

Last year I accidentally collided with someone on Instagram and Twitter who until then had been on the periphery of my family life.  A quick, nosy, scroll through their feed revealed that they had previously chosen to say some very unsavoury things about Andrew and me; some comments were plain nasty, some were (amusingly, it has to be said) fibs and some showed just how misinformed they were.  I cringed for them.   I wasn't at all close enough to them to be offended or hurt by their comments; I suppose I found it amusing and flattering that we were important enough to them to be discussed in a public forum, with strangers.  It was galling to read, of course, but I was embarrassed for them more than anything.  

Don't get me wrong, I like to live in a happy little bubble but I know how the real world works.  I am streetwise enough to know that my ideals are unrealistic and 'haters gonna hate' (ha! love that expression).  I know, also, that even the closest friends are going to moan sometimes.  We're all human and we all get irritated, upset, jealous, angry and frustrated about the smallest things.  I have a sharp tongue which I usually manage to control unless I am tired, hungry or anxious.  Then I get snappy and I am ashamed to admit that I've been a right old witch to my friends and family.   But I wouldn't casually bitch about them to anyone who will listen.  That's just not cool.

Thank the Lord I have such awesome people in my life who I love and who, I know, love me back.  I have made some really great new friends over the last few years and my old friends are as awesome as they've always been even though it is difficult for us to stay in regular contact.  These people - you - are the ones who remind me every day that the world is fit to burst with lovely people and the not-so-lovely ones are the minority.

I wrote this post to sort my thoughts into some sort of order after the ugliness of the last few weeks.  It has helped and I am going to start the week tomorrow afresh.  I am going to continue to be thick-skinned, remain loyal to the people I care about and stand by my basic life values.  Sorry it was all a bit heavy.

Normal service will resume with immediate effect and I'll be back 
to waffle about knitting, books and shopping next time. :)

Have a great week, my lovely friends.  

Love love,




  1. Oh sweetie, I hope no-one has hurt you too much. The thoughtless comments sometimes thrown around are not as easy to shrug off as we would wish. I'm glad you are not thinking of leaving this little bloggy world or even IG just yet. You'd be much missed if you did. If it's any consolation I agree with your life values, I think you have it right. I can not understand the need to share every single thought and deed with the world at large, but people will do it and I for one am going to stay in my protective bubble for as much as possible!

    S x

  2. So sorry to hear you've had a couple of grotty weeks, darling girl. Listen, I could remind you that most ugliness stems from jealousy but you know that already. I could tell you that my grandmother used to say "it's better to be talked about than not talked about" but that probably wouldn't help - at the end of the day, however thick-skinned any of us try to be, we are only human.

    Sandra's right, you have got the balance spot on and I really do mean that. Small-minded cretins will always find something to get their teeth into. Don't let this horrid episode question yourself - carry on being lovely, lovely you.


  3. Blimey...............what the hell's been going on?!?!?!?!
    I came off IG for similar reasons to what you have written, I guess I didn't experience much of a bitchy side, although there as one horrid issue I did have to deal with, where I was totally misunderstood and unable to put things right and it reinforced my beliefs that one blog is enough. I rarely tweet and I totally agree that people share too much.
    Like in one of my recent blog posts, I admitted I haven't seen my "lady garden" in weeks due to my big bump. But mine is all tongue in cheek, it's my style and I would NEVER pour my inner most thoughts out on social media. My husband's ear was made for that purpose!

  4. The gossipers and rumourmongers have always been out there but what they shared was once confined to the playground or the workplace or wherever and if the gossip was about us we didn’t necessarily get to hear about it. Then social media arrived where anyone can publish anything about anybody with a simple click. I think most of us try to make sure we behave appropriately when we socialise using our blogs, Twitter, Facebook etc, just as we would when talking to people face to face. But others just can’t hold their tongues and there are no restraints. Well done for writing this post and take heart from the fact that most people who read those nasty comments will have spotted where the real problem lies.

  5. It's such a lovely bubble you have here too! I never understand that sort of negativity but good for you for rising above it.

  6. Crikey - I do hope that you're OK, and that the past few weeks haven't taken their toll. I've closed my blog as I struggled with a lot of what was going around, and am far too thin skinned (or pathetic) whichever way you look at it, to venture any further into the world of social media. I love reading your posts, as your blog has always been so positive. As my old boss used to say (albeit in Latin), "Don't let the bastards get you down"! XX

  7. I couldn't agree more with your post here (you just wrote far more eloquently than I could have!) The whole tinterweb thing is so vast, we never really know who is reading - we hope it is like minded souls who want to write/read about hobbies, crafty bits and the 'fluffy' elements of life, but as we all too well know, the web is not all sweetness and light and caution should always be used. I use my fb account with two rules; if I know a person well enough to stop and have a chat in the street when I see them, then they'll be an fb 'friend' anything else is a no-no. The other is that if I'm not willing to shout it down the high street at midday on Saturday then it shouldn't be a status update! The reasons we love this whole tinterweb thing all too often becomes the reasons we can come to hate it!
    Hope you feel chirpier soon, I as well as many other like minded crafty/housiefied/baking souls love to pop by here to visit the happy Homebird to read of cosy, homely goings on!
    BH x

  8. Hi Nicki, I'm so sorry to hear of Your horrible few weeks,as the comments before,I m sure its all down to jelousy . Keep Your chin up lovely girl,I'm thinking of You and sending lots of love, julie xxxxx

  9. Hi Nicki, I'm sorry you have been made to feel you have had to post this entry. You are quite clear in your précis that your 'bubble' is important to you and no one should try to burst it!
    Initially my daughter accused me of stalking when I dipped into people's blog spaces (she's 12); she now understands why I do it (a bit of escapism, nice images and some fab craft ideas); and the nice thing is they are suitable for me to share with her. I think it's important for her to learn how to behave appropriately when using social media. Some of her school friends have highlighted how not to behave!
    Each of us needs to stand up to such inappropriate behaviour.
    Remain true to your own values and keep doing what you are doing. Andie X

  10. Why, oh why do people treat others like this? So sorry you've been on the receiving end. As you say once something has been aired it can't be unsaid and will probably come back to bite the perpetrator on the bum.

    Hope you're ok, and looking forward to your next lovely post. But don't forget we all need a rant sometimes and we're here to listen! Thanks for sharing, it's made me think a lot

    Love Claire xxx

  11. The internet can be a brilliant but then in the same vein, an awful place. So sorry you've had a bad time of it lately. I hope your week has got off to a positive start, looking forward to more of your lovely blog posts in the future xx

  12. Sorry you have to experience the darker side of the internet Nicki,People can be so cruel i'm not sure why?
    Hope you are now smiling and feeling better xxx

  13. Having to wonder if it is something in the 'air'. Really good, close friends to my daughter, and I am talking adult people in their 40's, have been really nasty to my daughter behind her back. It is upsetting to say the least especially as she has done nothing wrong, but they didn't have the courage to talk to her.

    I am pretty sure people think my world is bland, however I am like you and don't post things on the internet, I am lucky that I have my daughter to talk things over with.

    Sandi xx

  14. You write beautifully Nicki! Sadly people have been and always be the same; but I totally agree that the Internet is undergoing some strange over-sharing phenomena. Since when did it become ok to talk about everything online?! And why is it ok to troll someone on Twitter? I have avoided Twitter and Facebook lately, unsure of the etiquette!

  15. Stay in that bubble Nicki, I do xx

  16. Hi Nicki......Im the one who contacted you on Twitter to ask you to please go back and give your blog some love. So glad you are back as I love love love your little blog. I too live in a little bubble and like it that way. Im a very positive person and always smile because I choose to see the world as a happy place.
    Sorry about the crap you have had recently though. Some people huh!!!!

  17. I do know what you mean and I am going to say something slightly different to the above. I think I have overshared in the sense that I have written at times about very personal things, perhaps in a way that has made some people cringe. I love writing and I quite like writing about very difficult subjects. It does me good and isn't really a self pity thing, but could come across like that. However, I have recently deleted some stuff from my blog as it was potentially hurtful to some people. BUT I do think sharing very personal things can be a good thing, perhaps if it is done the right way. One example is A Thrifty Mrs posting about her depression.
    Re Mum in laws. Guilty. Being overseas and very stressed and perhaps wanting another perspective is probably why I shared some thoughts online. I think frustration sometimes leads to this and perhaps in a´way we have less community nowadays and strangely see people online as a community. This could be misguided and at times a bit of a lazy way of trying to sort out a problem. I actually really like my mum in law and feel bad about ranting about her via instagram, but I'm only human. I can see though why people using online forums to whinge is offputting.
    There is a thing on instagram where people do seem to post very sad things, without responding to all the frantic 'Are you ok???' comments, which I find a bit weird. I suppose it just meets peoples' needs in very dfferent ways. I actually find it very hard to keep my opinions to myself, which might be my downfall. I like instagram and blogger because I connect with people who like the same things as me, even though we might be quite different in real life. I think that is rather nice.
    Right, sorry for looong comment. Anyway, sod the haters. There are lots of good people out there too. Don't take their negativity on board or let it spoil your happiness. Big hugs chuck,
    Tracy xxx

  18. Late catching up here but so sorry to hear of this - I think when people are bitchy like that they are just publicly screeching their own damage out into the world, I really do. a little general venting is one thing but intentional unkindness and cattiness is another. Hope you can put it behind you and not give it the dignity of your energy. You are a top, top bird, hang in there! Xxx