Monday, February 8, 2010

On honesty in blogging... and everything else actually

The previous post was interesting because some reader got offended by a comment I made and some readers reacted and then it became nasty and then I just had to not allow nasty comments anymore. To be honest with ya, I found the exchange fascinating. I always liked controversy and dirt (which explains why I work in an entertainment magazine!) but since this is a mommy blog, I kinda figured I better clean it up since mommies seem to be expected to be positive and perfect. And since I'm spilling my guts here about how I feel about pregnancy and people around me (and guts aren't pretty), well, I'm rubbing people the wrong way.

First of all, I want to assure everybody that I love my unborn child. I hate feeling vomity and hungry and dizzy and tired and I certainly do not like my acne and the unsolicited advice being thrown at me left and right, but hey, it comes with the territory. I don't like what comes with the pregnancy but I love the kid that's causing all this fuss. The Jelly Bean is worth it.


Second, I'm honest but I'm not mean. People can't tell the difference. If you're fat and you ask me, "Hey, am I fat?", I will say, "Yes, you're fat." I will not mince words and I will not look away. But when I do say that, I'm not being nasty; I just answered your frikkin' question. So when I said in my previous post that I noticed that only ugly and unfashionable women tell me to stop trying to look good, I did mean that--that I'm fascinated with the fact that beautiful, kind and stylish women are encouraging and helpful while ugly women are nasty and discouraging. It's true! I wasn't being snarky when I wrote that; I was stating an observation.

Third, second point doesn't mean I'm a good and gentle person. If I were, this discussion won't even exist. I can be cruel and unkind. My friends and family call me "brutally honest" and they say this fondly but my family and friends are wonderful people who love me despite having been victims of my tongue. I've hurt a lot of people even though I didn't mean to. My sister once told me, "You're an editor so edit yourself!" As I've gotten older, I've learned to hold in my opinion, to lie even, but people can always tell if I'm lying. So now I say, "Ask me no questions and I'll tell you no lies."

Fourth, will my brutal honesty harm my child? I have no idea. My mother was just as brutal while my father's philosophy was, "Honesty is not always the best policy." I don't want to know why my father will live by that credo but in my experience, I appreciated my mother's truthfulness so I want to be just as truthful with my kid. But I do hope that wisdom and compassion will hold my tongue and, to be honest with ya, just right now, wisdom and compassion are two things I'm still learning about. So help me God!

Fifth, what does this mean for my blogging and my promise to be completely candid? Well, this means I'll still tell you how I really feel. And if you think I've said too much, do tell me. Sometimes I really am not aware if I'm already being hurtful. My husband, my friends, my brother and sister are always telling me to be careful, to shut up, to delete that post, etc. So tell me if I was out of line--I'm used to being told off and I don't get offended because I know how stupid and careless I can be. Also, if you notice, I don't really blog daily. That's because there are days I really really am miserable but I don't want to post it because I really don't want to record too much ugliness.

They say pregnancy is a beautiful thing. So far, it's been pretty ugly (sniff! sniff!). But I do have moments of happiness--the ultrasound and seeing that beautiful little Jelly Bean swimming about as we counted its fingers and toes (complete sets!), the gentle way my husband treats me and tells me I'm beautiful even though pimples have multiplied on my face and back, the way drivers will stop their cars or strangers will open doors when they see me waddling past, the way people's eyes light up when they find out I'm pregnant... There is kindness, too. And I'm happy to be honest about that!

7 comments:

  1. Siyempre super investigate ako to know who wrote the mean comments. Kaloka.

    This reminds me of people here who say I should stop obsessing over my weight. Anyway I'm not fat naman daw. But it's me who feels (un)comfortable with my body. I'm the one who has to live with it and nobody else.

    So sige, wear heels, put on makeup. Dammit, life is too short to feel ugly no.

    Siyempre dahil maganda ako (lalo na dito sa bansang to!) yan ang advice ko sa yo. Bwahahaha!

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  2. Frances,
    I too am brutally honest and have been told to censor myself, on many an occasion. I LOVE< LOVE< LOVE your honesty. These people who find your honesty offensive, well, they must prefer to lie to themselves. The world is not a place made of gum drops and people who are sweet as sugar. If we all went around acting as if nothing bothered us, everything was fine, and we were all happy al the time..we'd all be a bunch of liars. I believe if we can talk about and appreciate how miserable a situation is, we can also appreciate the beauty of the good times and appreciate them that much more. You are right, being pregnant is wonderful in the fact that at the end of all the misery we experience going through the process we get to hold our beautiful little babies in our hands. But I remember puking my guts up, all day long for about the first 5 months of my 2nd pregnancy and then quickly outgrowing every stitch of clothing I had..including my maternity clothes, the wonderful, previously nonexistent, back acne that I could do nothing about but wince every time I caught sight of it in the mirror. It was miserable, pepper in all the horrible unsolicited advice of pregnancy and worse, of how to take care of my not yet born baby, and I wanted to take a machete to most unsuspecting passers by.But ,in the end,after all of that misery I got to hold my beautiful daughters in my hands. And I was euphoric. Just let people have their say and then ignore it. If you actually ever need it, you will recall it. My guess is you won't need it:)
    Debi
    Truthful Mommy

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  3. Yes, it's not all peachy, Frances. I developed hemorrhoids after giving birth to my son and they bothered me all throughout my pregnancy with my daughter. Oops.. too much information. :) I never experienced nausea and vomiting during my first trimester though. So I hope your n&v means you will never develop hemorrhoids. hehe..

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  4. Love your honesty and speaking your mind. One old wisdom though, "speak the truth in love". This would probably reduce negative defensive comments and hurts. But then again, it is different when you're reading it than when you're hearing it. We all have unpleasantries and that's what make us human. I do believe though that we must also make conscious efforts to build each other up and not tear them down. Goes both ways, so dear commenters, this is for us all. And building each other up doesn't mean lying just to make someone feel good. Just don't open your mouth if it just stumbles someone. If someone asks you for an opinion, go for it, keeping these in mind. Otherwise, just don't speak. Less talk, less mistakes.

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  5. Hi - I appreciate the honesty! Sugar coating is boring. I have boys whom I adore, but I had the most miserable pregnancies - I hated every minute of being pregnant. The experience is different for everyone, of course, but I'm convinced it's good to share the negative experiences as well. Someone will be able to identify and feel comforted when you do.

    Thanks for dropping by to see me earlier!

    Peryl

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  6. I think that when it comes to raising children, it's really nobody's business but the parents. There will always be people who will disagree and give unsolicited advice but it's totally up to the mother whether to take the advice or not.

    Personally, my husband and I have agreed on the ff parenting principles: not lie to our kids, keep promises and no hitting/spanking. So far, it's worked very well for us. Our kids know we tell the truth and we don't make promises lightly because they hold us accountable to it.

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  7. i really admire your honesty! i was raised in a family wherein i can be hit because of telling the truth about what i don't like about my elders and the way things were...because of that i have always used positive scripting even though in my heart, i've always wanted to say otherwise...i still had this fear similar to what i felt about being hit...

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This is all pretty new to me so please feel free to share your mommy wisdom!