I have been online for a long time. I am 38. I was a designer for over a decade. I spent years in front of a computer. I spent many late nights tooling around IRC, commenting on message boards. I had a blog in the mid-90s. I started this one in 2001. I have experienced my fair share of online relationships. (I met Toby because of a message board called Dreamless.)
This is not some type of BEEN THERE! DONE THAT! rant. Not at all. I am writing this brief history to explain why I currently avoid most Internet drama. I have learned that nothing really good comes from it. Really. Nothing. I would say 99% of the time, Internet discussions and faceless, online interactions leave a person feeling agitated, upset, misunderstood, and obsessive. Someone is always going to be wrong on the Internet.
But it took a lot of wasted, agitated minutes to learn that it’s best to avoid Internet drama altogether.
Today, I’m not going to do that. Because I just can’t let this one go for some reason. And just when I thought the Internet was no longer capable of surprising me, the Internet went ahead and did just that.
A little backstory…
A woman named Katie Granju runs a site called Mamapundit. Let me begin by saying that I do not read Katie Granju. I do not follow her blog. But I do know that she lost a teenage son named Henry a few years ago in a most devastating manner. I am not sure how I know this, but I remember reading about it at my mom’s house at some point. I remember where I read it because I remember crying on my mom’s couch while trying to hide as much because I didn’t want to explain why I was crying. I was also knocked up and emotional.
I will say this much: it’s a horribly sad story. NO PARENT should lose a child.
So, a few days ago, a friend of mine sent me a link to a post on Ms. Granju’s Facebook page. Basically, someone sent in a postcard to Postsecret.
For those who don’t want to click the above link, the shot is of the name “Henry” written in the sand. Written on top of the image is the following:
“I took two Percaset today a gift to myself on my birthday. They do not make me miss you less, my sweet baby boy. Love Mama.”
Anyway, Ms. Granju took to Facebook, twitter AND her personal Web site and began accusing the person of being “cruel and disturbed“.
Believing that this person was out to get her, she accused the person of being dumb for misspelling the word Percocet.
There were other hateful things as well. It got really ugly, really fast.
Some people suggested it was a coincidence, that another grieving mother lost a child named Henry. But Ms. Granju’s paranoia fueled her. She started to come up with conspiracies, suggesting that it had to be a hoax because her son is named Henry. She called him her “sweet baby boy” and it was her birthday as well. Henry also referred to her as “mama”.
Ok, so, let me interject. I’ve been there before. I mean, not right where she is; I have not lost a child. The mere thought makes me want to die. What I mean is, I’ve been to the point where I think EVERYONE is out to get me. We women have a knack for this. It’s usually in my real life, however. Not online. But I have been there. I used to not have any control over it. But now that I’m older, and I’ve experienced it enough (usually happens during certain hormonal times of the month, for what it’s worth) I can stop my brain from going to that dark, terribly selfish place. Not everything (in fact very little) is about me.
I do not fault her for feeling this way. But I do fault her for taking it to the Internet. I do fault her—a woman with many, many followers, some of whom are willing to attack ANYONE on her behalf—for taking her paranoia to Twitter, Facebook and her own site. This should have stayed with her, among her friends and family.
Well, as it turns out, the original sender of the postcard was indeed another grieving mother who lost a baby named Henry. And her name is Mindy Bizzell. She was forced to own up to her secret after so many of Ms. Granju’s followers questioned its originality. Everything Ms. Granju wrote about her, as well as all of the responses, got back to Mindy. She read that she was dumb and evil and cruel.
Can you imagine?
Even if the hateful comments didn’t have Mindy “the person” in mind, as the people leaving them felt they had a cruel liar in their midst, it still must hurt to read these things. It must hurt to know that people assumed you were making it all up, that your grief isn’t as genuine and real as you experience it. It must suck to see so many people assume the absolute worst instead of giving another individual the benefit of the doubt.
I left a comment on Ms. Granju’s facebook page the day it all happened. I used my real name, of course. I wrote that I was surprised she thought it was about her in the first place. But I was more surprised at how hateful people became without knowing even a morsel of the truth. I wrote some other stuff, stuff I would write again. Many people suggested that we shouldn’t assume the absolute worst, that it’s not always about us, that sometimes it’s just what it is.
I felt, given how ugly things started out, that they were moving in the right direction. We had an example of something go from ugly to positive, especially given Mindy Bizzell chimed in about pain, loss and forgiving people. It was really remarkable. And it’s too bad you can’t read it now because Ms. Granju erased everything.
We all make mistakes, some worse than others. We can learn from them, however. Other people can learn from our own, if we allow them to. Sadly, there is no record of any of this anymore. Ms. Granju even rewrote her blog post, or so I am told.
I keep asking myself, Why can’t you let this go? I still don’t have an answer. Perhaps I’m entering one of those hormonally imbalanced phases, who knows. But this irrationally upset me. I hate that everything was erased, swiftly. I wrote as much on Ms. Granju’s page once more, (Update: Page has been deleted by Ms. Granju.) saying that I felt she was irresponsible for doing that, trying to erase history when so many people are involved. But I’m also upset that so many people blindly backed her up when she originally posted her feelings about the postcard. Are we THAT cynical? Are we that willing to throw away common decency to blindly follow another person? So much so, we write hateful things about another without having ANY of the facts?
I guess that we are.
If you’ve been reading this blog for a while, you know that I tend to have a bad taste in my mouth when it comes to blogging popularity contests, cliques and the like. And what I watched unfold this week between Ms. Granju, her readers and Mindy Bizzell, well, it just added to my distaste. But I so want things to be better somehow. I want to be a better person as well, less cynical about it. I want people to step up and apologize for the RIGHT reasons. I want people to admit wrongness (which Katie finally did, a step in the right direction). I want readers to hold bloggers accountable for their actions.
I think it’s time to call others out when they abuse their popularity even if it makes you less popular, even if you lose followers. Because I bet you’ll gain a few as well.
But mainly I just want people to be nicer.
I am by no means better than the next guy. I have my FAIR share of issues and problems, insecurities and ugly traits. We all do. But please don’t let these issues cloud your judgement. Err on the side of grace. Give people around you the benefit of the doubt. The truth is always a lot simpler than what our brains lead us to believe.
I have had the pleasure of talking with Mindy since this all unfolded. She is a truly wonderful, strong, gracious woman. I wish her the very best. Mindy Bizzell suffered a tremendous loss and somehow, in spite of all that, has an insurmountable amount of grace.
Lastly (and unrelated simply because I watched this Mountain Goats video and I’m feeling a touch emotional): give someone a hug today, someone you haven’t hugged before. I bet they need it.
I read a little about this earlier this week. It’s really sad on various levels.
I tend to not engage in internet drama. It’s not worth it to me in the long run. As much as I may want to get into the thick of things, leaving it be and staying out of it feel SO MUCH better to me. Preserves my sanity.
I know how passionate you are about many things. It’s hard to let things go when they may directly involve you. Just gotta pick those battles and let the other ones take care of themselves. Because they will.
I feel lighter writing this, and getting to post a link to The Mountain Goats! And I hope I don’t come off as mean or spiteful here.
I guess I just felt it needed to be SOMEWHERE, a record of it?
Then again…. I am hormonal!
I will likely come to regret this.
You wrote this beautifully. I understand your sentiment completely.
And your simple note: “But mainly I just want people to be nicer.”
It is at the very heart of a lot of my angst online lately. Especially during the political season. But I see it on Twitter too in regards to other bloggers and writers. A general acceptable trend of non-niceness. It often makes me sad.
Thank you for writing this. I understood it completely and am right there with you through it all.
This is why I always step away from the keyboard when I feel compelled to comment on a heated blog post. If I’m bantering with a personal friend in FB or something, that’s a different story, but with strangers I feel engaging while you are emotionally riled up (particularly in a negative direction), well cooler heads alway prevail. And I cannot tell y
…you how many comments I have written, walked away from and then erased without posting.
I love 1.) that you wrote this and 2.) the way you wrote this… thank you.
Thank you for this. I became aware of this Sunday and was simply horrified. My daughter died about a year and a half ago and I certainly understand how crazed deep grief makes you. I’m not the person I was before in ways both good and bad. I’m sure Katie Granju and Mindy Buzzell would agree with me that they’ve changed in incalculable ways.
The mean girl, group paranoia crazed hysteria that broke out Sunday was disgraceful. I hope Katie Granju gets the help she needs.
I also reached out to Mindy Buzzell, who was gracious and lovely.
And…I think that’s all I’m going to say. Lovely, lovely post about a really horrific bit of internet behavior.
Tracie: I am so sorry for your loss.
Thank you, thank you, thank you.
This is Katie’s MO. She posts something that horribly wrong and when a lot of people call her out on it, she either deletes them or deletes the post.
Lately she has gotten really delusional and goes off of the deep end several times a week. Just let another person say that they’ve experienced a loss and she goes bananas. No one can experience grief to the level that she does! No one has had a child die (or MURDERED as Katie likes to remind people) which has been as bad as her son. On and on and on it goes until several people call her on her crap, then she goes on a deleting ban.
Thank you for posting this. Please tell Mindy I’m sorry Katie caused her pain.
You’re my favorite.
I admit, I’ve never read your blog, and was linked here from another forum discussing the same awful situation. That being said, you can now call me a reader. This was perfect, and perfectly said. It’s disgusting that it needed to be said, but I hope that it sheds light on behaviors that should not be (but regularly are) tolerated. Thank you for this.
I think it’s really hard to let this one go because it cuts on so many levels. And sadly, this isn’t the first time Katie has deleted posts, dismissed another person’s pain, and hurt someone horribly with her internet words.
I could write volumes, but I want to be brief. I wanted to thank you for what you wrote on her blog. For trying to show her, as some of us have for awhile, that she isn’t the only person in pain, and also that her pain does not justify nor excuse poor behavior. I have read her blog for a few years now. Some of her writing on grief has been quite poignant. Unfortunately, and ironically, the past 6 months or so her writing is becoming more angry, bitter, and yes, paranoid. She is so upset that people have said cruel things about her and her son on the internet (and some have, some vile things), yet she turns around and does the same thing. And she seems to have no filter on when to share with family and friends, and when to share publicly.
This latest incident bothered a lot of people. It bothered people that some of her fans immediately assumed it must be true, and were wholeheartedly supporting her erroneous conclusions. That she didn’t apologize until she was pressured to do so, and even then most of the apology was about her. And I notice that not one of her fans, who said such unkind things about Mindy offered any public apology.
So thank you. And thank you Jenny Lawson for also coming forward and also saying, no, this is wrong, let’s stop this and learn from it. But as you said, some lessons now can’t be learned, because Katie decided to again start hitting the delete button.
On the surface, this scenario looks as you described it. However, you don’t seem to be familiar with much of the backstory.
Per your quote: “Some people suggested it was a coincidence, that another grieving mother lost a child named Henry. But Ms. Granju’s paranoia fueled her. She started to come up with conspiracies, suggesting that it had to be a hoax because her son is named Henry.”
That is not why the postsecret postcard seemed fake, not just to Katie but many others. I don’t think you are familiar with the dozens of photos of people sent Katie at the time of Henry’s death, with his name written at numerous beautiful spots around the world. This recent postsecret image seemed to be modeled after those others that were sent to Katie.
The difference with this image is that there is a reference to the “Mama” taking prescription drugs as a method of coping, which also seemed like a direct stab at Katie, considering the circumstances of Henry’s death. I don’t know if you are familiar with the many snarking, angry, jealous, miserable, catty, backbiting, bitter, did I mention jealous? women out there with too much time on their hands, all with a bug up their butts about Katie. (Since they almost all post anonymously, I guess they could possibly be men, but I’m guessing that they are womenkind at its worst).
These folks, the style of the postsecret image, and the percocet reference made many people think that “they” were at it again.
For the record, Katie has 1000X more admirers than detractors, judging by the popularity of her blog.
@Cora: I am familiar with the wonderful project that many kind folks have undertaken for the Granju family, sending pictures of Henry’s name in numerous locations. However, when I first saw this PostSecret postcard, along with the suggestions that it might be a “hoax,” on Katie, I couldn’t fathom why anyone who actually knew Katie and her story would think that. Henry is such a common name, and writing names in the sand in the beach is so, so common. I don’t know anyone who’s every been to a beach who hasn’t written things in the sand! The card was not posted on Katie’s birthday, it was about a week before her birthday. But disregarding all of that, even if there were reasons to think it was a hoax, it would have been much more appropriate to take a little time and do some research to determine the facts before posting inaccurate, cruel, and hurtful comments on facebook, twitter, and a blog. Katie and/or her supporters could have easily found out that PostSecret gets thousands of submissions and that those submissions may be posted months to years after they are submitted……Instead, many public comments were made forcing the author of the postcard to reveal her identity, and then her comments about her experience of this situation were deleted. The apology Katie posted on her blog really seemed to read as just making an excuse as to why she acted the way she did, rather than owning up to what she actually did, why it was wrong, and really saying “I’m sorry” to another grieving parent. Sorry to be so long winded, this story really touched me too given my own experiences with grief and loss. So many people turned to Katie’s blog due to our own experiences with addiction in our families, and traumatic grief and loss, only to find that she does not sympathize/empathize with any of us. It’s just too painful at this point, I suppose.
Just wanted to add that you can count me as one of your readers now.
And yes Ginger, as a former newswoman and journalist, coming from a long line of journalists, Katie should have checked things out before taking to the internets with her conspiracy theory.
She should have done a “thorough, professional, and unbiased” investigation into what was happening before throwing out words like dumb, cruel, and disturbed.
She expects that standard of behavior from others, and it would be nice if she held herself to the same standard.
I am in awe of Mindy, that she had the courage to come forward and reveal that it was her secret in order to stop the runaway train, and to ease Katie’s mind that no one was trying to torment her. Now that’s a brave woman.
What a beautiful post! For some reason, I found the whole Postsecret debacle very upsetting. I used to be an avid reader of mamapundit and Henry’s story touched me in many ways. I thought comments on Katie’s FB page were cruel and thoughtless and her apology didn’t feel genuine. How can you call someone dumb and not apologize? Where are the people now who were eager to add to the drama? I’d really like the groupies to admit they were wrong and to apologize.
Beautifully said. As I recall, your comment on her FB post was wonderful as well. Add me to the list of people deeply troubled by that ugly scene. I guess when the world revolves around you, it’s impossible not to make every single thing about you. Disturbing, to say the least.
I also wrote on Katie’s post telling her that it was highly unlikely that the secret was a plot to damage her. She dismissed me quickly. I then asked her to practice empathy. No response.
I like and agree with your question: why are the bloggers silent?
Thank you for writing this. I was one of the people commenting in support of Mindy on Facebook. I’m still angry about it, especially considering Katie is trying to bury her wrongdoing on FB with frivolous posts. She says she is upset and in tears about it, so I’m going to let it go. I pray that she gets some help and recognizes that she is not the only person in the world in pain.
This is heartbreaking on so many levels. I wish people would just play nice online, for pete’s sake. If we can’t manage that, how will our kids learn to?
I think it is dis-Grace-full and fairly horrific the mindless mob mentality often depicted on Ms. Granju’s facebook and blog. Her bffs follow her lead blindly, no matter how ill conceived the path, or the dangers on that path. It’s basic mean-girl, high school, bully behavior…all “grown up”…but we cannot label it mature, or reasonable.
I don’t have anything new to add that all of you have so eloquently already said, except thank you. Thank you for calling Katie and the nasty commenters out, thank you for just wanting people to be nicer, and thank you for writing about it all so perfectly.
I knew nothing about this debacle but thank you for posting about it and for bringing such a level headed view on the while issue. Why is it that people can’t seem to be more kind online? Have we become just as rude to those we know in the real world as well? Or is it the ability to hide behind some online persona that enables the meanness we often see?
@Cora, thanks for writing that from the perspective of a fan that recent critics of KAG seem jealous. I was wondering what the explanation was going to be. I can’t understand this one. If they were jealous of bloggers wouldn’t they be upset with other bloggers, too? I have never heard of a mom who lost a child invoking envy.
Is there any other explanation you can imagine?
I just want to say that after reading Mindy’s story I am truly heartbroken to hear about her baby boy Henry. Being at home with a newborn (and a bit on the over-emotional side at the moment) ,I just want to hold him tighter and closer. Grace is truly a virtue more need to share like Mindy has shown.
Speaking of Grace…
I wonder, Mihow, how familiar are you with Katie Allison Granju, other than some of the recent postings on the PostSecret incident? You stated up front that you don’t read Katie’s blog, Mamapundit.com. There’s much more to this story than Katie’s reaction to this PostSecret.com image, an image that she wrongly believed was made to look as though it was done by her. If you haven’t already, I suggest you take a visit to Mamapundit.com and especially Babble.com see the general tone of Katie’s writing, which is not mirrored in her PostSecret response. You’ll also get a whiff of the history of what she has put up with from a small but vocal minority: people who seem to revel in the fact that the Attachment Parenting author lost a son to drug addiction, and want to rub her face in it.
I, too, winced at Katie’s reaction to the PostSecret “Henry’s Mama” card. Suspicious as I was as to its authorship, there was still no way to prove that it wasn’t a hoax. I wish Katie had responded differently. But as someone who has been reading her blog and articles for the past few years, I fully understand where her reaction came from.
@Cora, @jealous?, I agree with Cora on this. There are legions of women who perhaps are not exactly jealous of Katie, but extremely bugged by Katie’s success. It started when she wrote the book on Attachment Parenting, which had a huge following. I am not a fan of all aspects of attachment parenting but find the discussions around parenting techniques very interesting. Katie wrote a book and helped foster a movement. She published articles and started a very successful blog. The affable nature and generous spirit of her writing accrued her many, many fans. And this infuriated some people. Fury will happen when virtually ANY theory of child-rearing is put forth (sleep training, home birth anyone?). Or, for that matter, when any woman boldly states her opinions!! WHO does she think she IS? But I found the amount of vitriol toward Katie astonishing. This ramped up even nastier when it was revealed that Katie’s teenage son had a drug problem. Did not stop when her beloved Henry died, and some of what has been thrown at Katie since Henry’s death can only be described as sick. In copious amounts. The anonymous aspect of the internet can reveal the worst in people.
You have stated that you don’t read Katie’s blog, Mamapundit.com. So I can also assume that you are not familiar with the long and extensive battle Katie is fighting to bring the people who gave Henry drugs (starting when he was a minor) to justice. If you do any reading at all, you know that addiction in general is an extremely divisive and controversial issue, with many people feeling that the drug addict is to blame for his own actions. Which to some extent is true, and I believe that Katie would agree. But I side with Katie in the notion that these kids are also stigmatized because of the label “drug addict”. Imagine if a high school senior had a graduation party and his parents allowed alcohol, resulting in a drunk-driving fatality. You can be sure there would be public outcry at the PARENTS who allowed the booze at the party, with lawsuits, etc. But not so with drugs and teens? Katie has joined with family, friends, and some lawmakers in an arrest for the people involved in Henry’s death. Some googling on this subject (try searching the Knoxville newspapers) and you’ll see the disgusting, judgemental reaction by some folks to Katie’s situation (the mother of a drug-addicted teen) and her efforts on this matter.
On the other hand, since Henry’s death many admirers and followers reached out to Katie in myriad ways, and continue to do so. Letters, prayers, personal and monetary involvement in Henry’s Fund. Another way was sending Katie images of Henry’s name throughout the world, dozens of which were posted on her blog. Very much like the PostSecret.com image of “Henry” written in the sand (except without the mention of narcotics) .
Then there is the phenomenon of “Get Off My Internets”, something I discovered when I once did an internet search of Katie’s site, Mamapundit. GOMI, as it is known, has to be seen to be believed. Forums of people all dissing various bloggers, often nastily and personally, almost always anonymously. Speculating on bloggers’ personal lives in the most repugnant way. Any mature adult would and should back away, but they seem to have a growing readership (and search-engine presence) and feed each other’s fire to comment elsewhere, like Katie’s Facebook page, or, the comment sections of the various publications that Katie writes for, like Huffington Post (they comment elsewhere then actually report back to GOMI). I know from working in publishing that folks who are angry tend to make more noise than folks who are happy and content. The seething about Katie goes from comical to unbelievable. She and many other successful mom-bloggers. A common gibe against most bloggers is that they MUST have an inflated sense of self-importance simply because they choose to write about their own lives. GOMI went nuts over the PostSecret incident, and oh so sanctimoniously in the name of sympathy for Mindy Bizzell! Sorry if I seem cynical! They made lots of noise elsewhere online, and for many people this unfortunately defined their first impression of Katie Allison Granju. You can tell by what is being said that this is so. I think a couple of them chimed in here.
I came upon Mihow.com through an internet search for something else, and was not familiar with your blog but found the assumptions you wrote about Katie in the above post really offensive. I assumed that you were of the GOMI crowd, or, just not-fully informed. After reading through more pages of your blog, I see a down-to-earth, contemplative mother/professional who feels and writes passionately. I just don’t feel that you know enough of Katie’s life and writing to comment on her inadequacy of Grace. It seems as though you’ve reacted to the whole PostSecret scenario on its surface, and/or as it has been framed by Katie’s detractors. Before you wrote your post, I wish you had familiarized yourself with more of Katie’s history, of Henry’s story, the general tone of her writing and that of her critics. After following Katie for about three years, I believe her hasty and wrong-headed reaction to the Henry-in-the-sand postcard was an emotional response, a result of her dealing with so many other incidents of internet slander. Let’s discuss this, not judge her.
So, Mihow, how about practicing a little Grace? Towards a fellow mother who, for good reasons, has thousands of fans, but who also has been through hell on earth?
How about not writing something so mean about a mother who lost a child? YOU are disgraceful.
Stacey, Mihow wrote a thoughtful post, and most everyone has responded thoughtfully, whether agreeing or disagreeing. And then you came along.
I think this is written with logic and compassion. I think we also have to remember that suffering a great tragedy is not an automatic pass for all future behavior. If anything, losing a loved one should make us MORE compassionate. After all, we truly know how unpredictable life can be. Shouldn’t we seek to inflict the least pain possible on others?
Ok, I’m adding a caveat here before I respond. I am on very little sleep. Little sleep makes me depressed, so I am not 100% today, but I feel that I need to respond.
First: “Speaking of grace”… I fail to see what I wrote above that offended you. I didn’t attack Katie personally. I did say her paranoia fueled her, something you backed up in your comment. She has a history of being shat upon, and she brought that with her and responded in public, so everyone could see it. I merely stated the truth, in my opinion. So, what assumptions did I make above that are a personal attack against Katie, that offended you so much?
She did in fact erase everything. She was fueled by paranoia, again, something you admitted. She DID accuse the creator of said postcard of being dumb for misspelling something. She did call it fake. She did do this publicly and she did get her fans riled up. Katie Granju wrote all these things, I just followed along and, after I realized she was erasing everything, took screenshots.
I did make a few assumptions personally but I didn’t write them here. And I tried really hard NOT to come off as a person who was merely attacking Katie. I tried really hard to remain fair. Because I get it! Believe it or not, I do get it. I get her paranoia.
But this is bigger than Katie Granju anyway, which is why I wrote about this incident. This is something I have seen happen time and time again with many popular bloggers. People get heated up without having any of the facts. They go into attack mode, calling people names for stating an opinion.
Another example: Heather (dooce) recently retweeted someone for stating that they felt she was unfunny for being mean to a squirrel. Her retweeting this wasn’t necessarily a bad thing, and goodness knows Heather deals with a fair share of bullshit. But the response it received was definitely uncool. Some folks called the woman an idiot. They called her humorless, accused her of being a troll.
Was her original tweet worthy of being called a humorless idiot? I don’t think so. (I also don’t think it was particularly worthy of a retweet, but that’s just me.)
Anyway, I am tired of it. I’m tired of the group mentality, the ATTACK mentality. We go nowhere this way. Nothing changes. We have our team and our team can do no wrong. The OTHER team is the bad guy. You fuck with OUR guy, we fuck with you in massive numbers.
Not cool. Take responsibility. That’s all I’m saying. Everyone needs to take personal responsibility for their actions. And the more eyes you have on you, the more you should be doing this.
(I will likely come to regret this comment as well, but I needed to say my peace.)
What Katie went through was awful. I am truly sorry for her loss. But I keep thinking about my husband. He has been through a great deal of very bad, terrible things. I will never write the details here or anywhere; it’s not my story to tell. But he follows this philosophy: A person’s past should not be an excuse. Own up to it, change, whatever you need to do. But it’s not an excuse for all future behavior. Basically it’s precisely what grammargeek wrote above. Your past might be a reason for who you are today, but it should NOT be used as an excuse for your behavior socially.
We all have a past. We all have our issues. We should try and use our past experience to help others with similar issues, not blast them. Not accuse them of lying, making it all up. I don’t know.
Stacey: I’m not even going to entertain you with an answer. Sorry.
I fail to see how the message of Michele’s post, to show some grace and thoughtfulness, and the post itself, where she shows grace and thoughtfulness, is at all offensive, unless you’re trying really hard to be offended.
I [haven’t followed this whole situation and don’t have enough information to get involved. However, I am a regular reader of your blog and I do think you are a compassionate woman who wrote about this with care and grace. There will always be people who disagree but it is sad that one cannot disagree without personal attacks.
Oh… and I didn’t mean you were personally attacking. Other commenters. My daughter sent the comment before I was done.
what sarah brown said.
@Speaking of Grace
See- I do not see mamapundit as a major blog. It simply is not, but most of the disaffected were previous “fans,” so what I cannot understand is how fans become, all of a sudden, jealous of a mother who is not coping very well with a tragedy like the loss of a child.
I just think anyone who thinks readers are jealous of bloggers who have suffered tragedy is not thinking clearly. That is not it.
@speaking of grace- I am sorry- I read your post too quickly. I can promise you, as an attachment parent, that is not what I find disturbing about this most recent (and only most recent) effort of mamapundit to shame someone online. I have also lost a family member to addiction, a sister and mother of a child, so I don’t think your other explanation applies to me- or to others I know of, too (such as the blog’s previous voice of reason- a mother named Geri, who was ridiculed and shamed regularly on the blog.)
I just wish you would think through further why this blog would anger people. It isn’t for the reasons you list. So keep thinking, maybe?
Speaking of Grace-I didn’t read this post by Michelle as a judgment of Katie. It was pointing out that taking the kind of reaction Katie had onto the internet wasn’t wise, and hurtful. You said yourself you winced at Katie’s reaction. The fact Michelle doesn’t read Mamapundit adds to her ability to see this incident without bias or preconceived opinions. She has no horse in this race. I think she was doing just what you asked in your post, discussing this.
You are a wonderful role model. Thank you.
Very well said. I’ve been blogging since 2001, and this gang mentality is so disconcerting. It reminds me of school, and I was never very comfortable in school.
It’s so many months now after the fact, but in a fit of apparent narcissism I googled my own name and this came up — anyway, thank you for this, and for speaking up for me and for the others who did as well. Your kindness is so very much appreciated. Sometimes (even still, three years after my son’s death) I go around thinking the world has it in for me, and then when people like you really actually care, well, it really means something to me. thank you.