Thursday, May 13, 2010

If you don't have anything nice to say. . . .

I have a question of blog-related etiquette for my readers.

When it comes to commenting on posts, do you think it is acceptable to leave a comment that is something less than 100% positive and supportive? I have had a few of those comments on occasion on this blog and have seen many more on others' blogs. (For some reason, the things I write don't seem to stir up as much controversy as others. . . . though I did have one comment a few months ago telling me that perhaps my purpose in life was to serve as a warning to others.)

On the one hand, it could be argued that by putting your stuff out there on a public, blog you are inviting comments and assvice from anyone who may stumble across your blog. This view of the situation would be particularly true in situations where the blogger actually solicited opinions from the readers.

On the other hand, most people who write blogs on the topic of infertility in particular are probably not writing the blog to spur public debate of their choices. I know that I started this blog primarily as a place to vent my feelings, chronicle my journey, and connect with others going through similar experiences.

Is it a case of, what most of our mothers taught us, "If you don't have anything nice to say, don't say anything"?

I know there have been times when I have read blog posts by others and simply not commented because I did not feel I had anything helpful to add. This feeling on my part could have been due to either a lack of knowledge (i.e., the blogger was asking about IVF or pregnancy symptoms or parenting, with which I have no firsthand experience) or due to my being in an emotional place at that time which made it difficult/impossible for me to offer support (i.e., blogger venting about pregnancy symptoms, or announcing a BFP when I've just seen my own BFN).

Thoughts? I'm interested to hear what you think. (So this is one of those times when all comments are invited.)


  1. I've certainly gotten negative comments on my blog -- or rather, I got them BEFORE I "went private." They were always anonymous. That makes me think they were trolls. There is usually a nice way to say what you want ot say, even if it isn't a "rosy" message, so if teh delivery is mean, I usually think it is intentional.

  2. I believe 100% when it comes to blogs that are centered around infertility, baby loss etc. that comments should only be positive/supportive- or don't leave a comment at all. One can offer a differing point-of-view or perspective while doing it an a sensitive manner. There are some insensitive/negative/crazy people out there.

  3. I cannot recall ever getting a comment that I found particularly negative, and sometimes I find that people who write "advice" are almost too apologetic to me. I like hearing all different opinions as long as they are written in a respectful way.

    I try really hard to leave only positive comments or not comment at all. On the other hand, I'm sure that sometimes I have tried to be helpful and the person whose blog I commented on might not have thought I was helpful at all. It can be a fine line sometimes, I guess, but I think that common sense, decency, and politeness can go a long way.

  4. I think in general I try really hard to just be nice! And I would appreciate the same. Now don't get me wrong, I can be pretty snarky, but I at least have enough sense not to put it in writing ON THE INTERNET! for my mama and everyone else to see! But maybe that's just the southerner in me!??!

  5. If you don't have anything nice to say, don't say anything at all...especially in this case. It's MY journey and I just want a little support and info from other's in the same boat.

  6. I just recently had an unsupportive comment on blog. I found it extremely hurtful. I use blogging as a way to express the thoughts that I can't in real life. I don't want to be judged, just supported.

  7. I think there's a big difference between offering a differing view point or alternate explanation and being mean and inconsiderate. I have been pretty lucky so far that I've never had to deal with a troll posting on my blog.

    I hope that this post was not prompted by a visit from a troll on your blog!

  8. I think that on an IF blog, if you can honestly offer support and positivity you should.

    If you can't (if you disagree with the poster, or think there is a problem with the post or the sentiments expressed), then you can either opt not to comment (letting your silence speak for you), or you can find a way to express your disagreement in a civil, nonhurtful way. There is no place for trolling on an IF blog, and I really hope you're not experiencing that here!

  9. I've had some doozies on my blog, but they all tend to come from anonymous cowards. I am torn on how I feel about them because on one hand they do hurt, but on the other hand they often make me think. Not everyone lives in IF land so I know not everyone thinks along the same lines as someone writing an IF blog. I guess I do like to know what others outside this sucky place think about what I am going through. All that being said I just wish they could find a nicer way to do it...or come out of their hiding place and put their name with it...

    Mostly when I get them I think, "How awful must their life be for them to come to an IF blog and be an ass." I tend to feel sorry for them more than anything...

  10. I tend to follow your motto of "not having anything nice to say" and passing on stuff that I don't like or find wrong or offensive. After all, I can choose to never go back to that blog again. The only time I have to restrain myself is when I click on a blog claiming to be an "infertile" and then seeing it took them like 6 months to get pregnant. I haven't commented yet, but I've wanted to, because I find it hugely offensive, ecspecially to those who have been through way more than me. I sometimes feel guilty for posting my own complaints when I know I have a lot to be thankful for.

    Good luck this cycle!


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