Not everyone is going to like the shit you write. And that’s okay.

A few months ago during a particularly shitty time in my life, I sat down to write this post.

Turns out, it pissed off a lot of people. Like, a lot a lot.

It certainly wasn’t my intention, but nonetheless, the shit hit the fan and I found myself caught in a crossfire of angry comments and less-than-stellar feedback. I lost some friendships and even became a bit of a social pariah. Le' sigh.

It didn’t seem to matter that I’d written a bajillion fair few articles on how fan-freakin-tastic this place and my life here was.

All the positive press I’d previously created – paid, sponsored or voluntary – was wiped from people’s memories as soon as they read and judged me by this one (extremely personal) post.

Now, to be fair, I did write this particularly angst-y piece whilst I was going through some traumatic shit. Looking back, it was more my pain speaking than ‘me’.

Retrospect is a bitch, amirite?

So here’s the lowdown on that post:

What I meant by my words: I live in a foreign country in the middle of nowhere. I’m in pain. I’m lonely. I haven’t seen my family in over a year. I’m suffering from some killer depression that makes me question my whole life...and oh yeah, did I mention I just watched my puppy painfully die in my arms? Life’s pretty damn shitty for me right now and I don’t think I can pretend that it’s all sunshine-and-fucking-unicorns-magical #sorrynotsorry

How some people interpreted my words: Oh, poor thing! That’s terrible and I’m so sorry to hear you’re going through that. Are you, okay, my friend? I’m here for you if you need me. Thanks for being so honest and sharing your experience.

How others interpreted my words: That fucking bitch, how dare she throw shade about xyz?!? What da fuck? If you don’t like how shit is, then fuck off. I should cut that bitch * insert gangsta signs *

Now imma' be straight up with y’all and say this: it fucking knocked the (creative) wind outta me.

I lost my balls (metaphorically speaking) and stopped writing. Because #RejectionSucksAss

Ah, the life of a writer...

Do I regret upsetting people with my words? Absolutely.

But… (And this is a big fucking BUT)...

Do I regret writing them? Hell NO.

People deal with grief and pain in lots of ways. Some cry and scream and curse life; others retreat into themselves and withdraw from the world. Some peeps use alcohol, food, sex, drugs - or all four at the same time - to deal with the shit in their lives.

I use words. Okay, and maybe a bottle little vodka.

I write through my pain in order to make sense of it. And that’s what I did during this extraordinarily crappy moment in my life.

I wrote about my experience with raw honesty and complete transparency. Fuck, I even managed to weave a little self-deprecating humour into the mofo. Because HUMOUR.

And after I’d hit publish? I felt better. I’d released my pain in the way I know how. It was fucking cathartic.

However, I had no idea about the shitstorm that lay ahead.

Some people reached out to me and offered comfort, support and love.

Some people gave me the metaphorical finger and to told me to fuck off.

One group is my tribe. The others are not.

Which brings me to the big lesson here...

Not everyone is going to like the shit you write. And that’s okay.

Most people who judge you based on what you’ve written are usually doing so because they’ve recognized something about themselves within your words – and frankly, they don’t like what they hear.

They react impulsively, take personal offence and lash out accordingly. Very rarely do they stop to ask themselves why.

Why is this pissing me off? Is it because I think that bitch threw shade at me? Or is it because those words are ringing a little bit too true for my liking?

The purpose of my writing is not to point fingers or make people feel like shit; my writing is all about honest expression.

I write about my awesome experiences to make people laugh or be inspired. By sharing my shitty moments, I hope others in similar situations may feel a little less lonely, a little less like a failure.

Basically, I write because at the heart of it all, that’s what I do.

It may not be the way everyone deals with their shit, but I personally think it's way more fucking healthy than going on a cocaine-and-hooker-fuelled bender.

The lesson in this experience? If you are committed to sticking to your values as a writer, then you need to be prepared to accept that not everyone will share those values.

My values as a writer (and as a human): Honesty. Transparency. Integrity. Humour.

And as a reader of my words, you need to decide if you dig those vibes – if they align with your own – and if you want to take on or disregard my message.

If you don’t? That’s cool too. Just don’t fucking read my shit. Please respect the fact that I have a right to express myself – as do you – and then drop it. Move the fuck along with dignity and compassion. You don't need to define me as a person based on one post, just as I don't judge you as a person based on your not-so-fucking shiny moments.

Either way, I’m gonna’ keep on writing, you’re gonna’ keep on doing your thang, and the world will just keep on worlding like a mofo.

After a few months of licking my wounds and testing the waters by writing a few pretty fucking boring safe blog posts, I'm getting my mojo back. I've learnt some harsh lessons and dealt with the consequences. But I have come to a point where I absolutely refuse to stop doing what I love just to appease a few people who aren't part of my posse.

Not everyone is going to dig the shit I write. And - finally - I'm okay with that.

Shanny3 Comments