2 down, 141 to go


I see that I just lost two long-term and devoutly religious followers, presumably due to my response to Just_because_today following my last post. I would have softened that response had I done as I often do, which is to go away and get myself into a better mood after writing something but before publishing it. I didn't though, and rewriting such things after they're published is of questionable benefit to those who have already received my first response in their email.

My goal in writing posts about controversial topics is not simply to preach to the choir. It is also to promote understanding among those who disagree with me. I am painfully aware that such people might very well hang in there—however tenuously—through several posts on a subject, and then leave because I expressed myself poorly in just one sentence in the response column. This leaves me feeling as if I'm walking on eggshells.

I'm sure some of you will wonder why the hell I even bother, and you might advise me to write whatever I please and let the chips fall where they may. My answer is that I find it far more interesting and constructive to communicate in a way that is true to my best thinking and that causes no more offense than I can avoid. It's a challenge that I mostly enjoy and from which I derive tremendous benefit, but because I work so very hard at it, I naturally feel badly when I fail. Of course, I also recognize that losing followers is inevitable. We all do it no matter what we write or how well we write it.

I would just ask those of you who disagree with me to cut me as much slack as you can. I am quite possibly familiar with your orientation in regard to religion, at least, because I have walked on both sides of the fence, but odds are that you know little if anything about mine. To this end, my next post on the subject won't contain rational arguments but personal experiences.

32 comments:

Pamela Terry and Edward said...

I believe in a loving God, but I'm not afraid of the opinions of others. I'll fill in for one of the followers you lost.

Sonia ;) said...

Awwww Snow hugging you buddy. We all lose followers, they come and go. I love your posts and they way your willing to debate and look at all angles of an arguement. Dont change just for a couple of ppl's reactions. Be true to thy self.

xoxoxooxoxoxoxox come by my blog at look at me over the years LOL....chronological order of me through the years in pics.

xoxoxoxo

Bernie said...

Snow are you sure you lost 2 followers due to your last post, I think people who follow you have got to know your heart and know that you like a lively educated debate. It took me a while to figure you out but when I did I liked what I saw.
Just be true to yourself Snow as you allow others to be true to themselves.....it is the only way relationships of any kind work.
Be well my friend, and enjoy Memorial Weekend......:-) Hugs

rhymeswithplague said...

I had a reader, a woman from Tennessee, who got so upset at something I said that she systematically went through every post of mine she had ever commented on and deleted every comment she had ever made, and she hasn't been heard from since.

I promise not to do that.

Oh, yeah, and you ain't gettin' rid of me any time soon.

Christine Robinson said...

Sometimes people leave for reasons other than being offended, Snow. With all due respect, it's not always about you.

Besides, who cares? We don't write to accumulate fans.

Right?

Rob-bear said...

I cannot say I'm your greatest follower, because your writing takes thought, and my brain is often foggy (thanks to the pain medications I'm taking).

I'm a great believe in the notion that, "if you've got all the answers, you haven't asked all the questions." I look for answers I don't have that are implicit in questions I haven't asked. (Sorry for the foggy thinking; not totally sure that made sense.)

I think I tend to disagree with much of what you write because I think you have asked questions which I see as being superficial. Because I see them as superficial, I tend not to take them too seriously. Some of your readers are a bit more challenging, sometimes. And I never sense to wonder at the utterly superficial nature of what many others write.

When you get down to your last follower, it will probably be me.

Tracey said...

Well, I'll just have to follow you twice, then.

Your posts are thought provoking and very well written!

Happy weekend!
Green-Eyed Momster

kylie said...

snow,
just how much are these people worth your time and effort if they are going to leave over a thing like that?
where is their loyalty?
where is their confidence in their own position?
and where is their open mind?

if it makes you feel better, you could lose all 142 followers and i'll still be here.....

unless i get upset with you :)

xoxoxoxoxox

Natalie said...

That would be good to hear some personal experiences.
When you get to the other side and figure it all out, will you please try and contact me?
I will be waiting. :D

The Bipolar Diva said...

Snowbrush, to the followers you lost I say to them "judge not, lest you be judged."

The Blog Fodder said...

Hi, Snowbrush, I am not ignoring your last column, just been too busy to put time into thinking. You raised some good points. I will get to it soon.
Sorry you lost a couple of readers over it.

Zuzana said...

Do not worry about followers. That number means absolutely nothing. I gain and loose followers all the time and my post are rarely controversial. I too stop following some blogs that just simply do not speak to me, even though I thought they would. It has nothing to do with any particular post.
Your writing is of great substance and very well formulated and your opinions clearly expressed. Those who enjoy what you have to say will stick around no matter what the context is of your posts.
Have a great weekend,
xo

Realliveman said...

What is life if you can't say or write what you believe? Life is no fun without that freedom. If people leave because they don't like what you wrote, that is on them, not you.

It's always a choice. Don't feel bad that 2 left. Feel good that people now know what you believe.

Elisabeth said...

You are a brave soul to challenge the orthodoxy, but I agree with you that it is important that you write as you see fit, especially in areas that you have considered well.

It's a topic dear to my heart at the moment - unspoken, unwritten censorship in the blogosphere.

I suppose it's not such a bad thing, that those you offend take themselves away. But it is sad to think that some people will not let themselves be challenged by new ideas.

Marion said...

I always read your posts, Snow, even if I do not always comment. I am not a good debater, especially if I'm fogged up with meds or simply feeling the effects of my condition. You are an incredible writer; I always enjoy reading, even if your thoughts are different from mine. That's what makes the world go round...different strokes for different folks, perhaps.

People who leave have their reasons, and it may not have anything to do with what you've said or didn't say.

I shall continue to look forward to your posts. I am not a person who would drop someone easily, especially you!

Take care of yourself, dear friend!!

Rita said...

To this end, my next post on the subject won't contain rational arguments but personal experiences.

Probably the best way to approach the subject of religion with the religious. Rational arguments don't mean very much in religious circles. It's more about what a person wants to be true then what logically/rationally makes sense as those of us who HAVE been on both sides of the fence know.
The particular denomination I was involved in most of my life was evangelistic/charismatic & it's all about feelings in that sect. Well, along with a cultivated sense of entitlement & righteousness.
I'm looking forward to your next post

dana said...

I've lost readers through the NINE YEARS I've been blogging.

I can't call them "followers" since I'm not a leader.

A few hurt me deeply by returning to the comment section and causing arguments and raised blood pressure for the ones who defended me and I felt it was MY fault for the carnage.

I recently lost another reader due to one sentence, and I stopped blogging. Then I realized with horror that I was here for kudos and agreement!! In my effort to please everyone, I had forgotten about myself.

I actually come here Snow, because I feel that I can safely voice my true feelings, without alienating my readers (who are of a more gentle nature than I).

Lots of readers see us as THE ONE THING they agree with, without realizing we are mixtures of extenuating circumstances that blur our edges.

While that makes us more interesting beneath the surface,(we hope) so many humans need to pigeon hole people into ONE mold so that they can better relate, or better hate, us.

I read you with like minded feelings toward god but would probably disagree with you on many other subjects.

You were just pidgeon-holed darlin', and judged as offensive regarding one comment.

I read your comment and found it to be benign in its content.

That's why carousels go "round and "round. It it went straight, no one would ride for long.

Don't mess up a good blog by going "round and "round, trying to please everyone.

Marion said...

Snow, they're a bunch of wimps if they stopped following you. I've been offline due to computer problems. Hope to be back to visit you soon. We're at the library today. Hope you're feelin better. Blessings!

kj said...

what can i say that hasn't already been said?

i lose followers too. and i admit i'm beyond curious wanting to know WHO. how did you know WHO? i never do.

i think i am ego petty to enjoy seeing my numbers go up. i have a high school reaction to wanting to be popular.

oh well....

but snowbrush, i would never ever ever leave you for such a reason as disagreement. you can be sure.

love
kj

Teresa said...

Hi Snow,
You have not lost me...I read what you say, but I still choose to follow Jesus...lol! I would love to read some of your personal experiences! (((( Grace to You )))) T

Kerry said...

I appreciate your rational thought and blunt honesty. I can't imagine your blog without it.

I encourage you to consider eliminating the "Followers" widget in the sidebar; you will be less distracted by it and people who really want to follow can still do so by clicking above, on the (what's it called?) menu. Just a thought.

dana said...

Snow: I'm trying something pretty radical on my blog this week. I hope it ends up being a "regular" feature. I won't know until its all over, whether it was a success or not, but it's one of those things "whose time has come".

Forgive my lack of correct sentence structure. I ain't here cuz I'm a linguist. lol

CreekHiker / HollysFolly said...

luckily, some of us don't scare that easily. Live and let live... OY!

ellen abbott said...

I read your last post but my life has been sort of busy lately and I didn't have time to comment but I enjoy your posts on religion. It's one of my favorite topics though I don't believe in it. Anyway, if you truly lost two readers because of your views on religion then obviously they only want to read people who agree with their point of view. to that i say...no great loss.

Keep on being you.

Chrisy said...

It happens to us all...the losing 'followers' I mean...but I don't think it usually has anything to do with us/our blog posts. It's just part of people coping with their worlds in their own ways, as best they can. Hope life is going well for you my friend. I'm heading away to Toowoomba for a couple of weeks and my hosts aren't into the internet so will be slack once again with blog posts and comments.

Mim said...

I like your posts - whether I agree with them or not. Usually very well written and thought out.

Don't get all high school on us, with the followers. Silly stuff some people can do

Just_because_today said...

Sorry that my comment which originated your response might have been the cause for two followers to leave.

Snow, we blog because there is freedom in it. Because it is a place where we can express our opinions. If we write what everyone wants to read then it would cease to be interesting.

I believe in God and I am certainly not afraid of anyone disagreeing with me. On that note, write away.

geek said...

You might already know this, my dear Snow, as you have more experiences than me but what the heck, I'll say it anyway. You can never please everyone. People take meanings in different ways, especially here in the internet and many people can be especially touchy with their religious faith.

We win some, we lose some. Hope you're doing well. Don't lose hope with your posts. They might not be for everyone, but be sure that you have enlightened someone.

nollyposh said...

X;-)

All Consuming said...

I've only got one official follower and that's you. I so admire your tenacity and how much you share of yourself. If anyone disagrees with me I push a custard pie in their face and hit em with a frying pan. Tom and Jerry have alot to answer for. xx

C Woods said...

Hi Snow ---
As others have pointed out, some people stop following for not much reason at all. I have often started to follow a blog because I liked one post, but then realized 6 months had past and I hadn't visited again because the topics & starting sentences weren't of interest to me. About once every 6 months, I go through the blogs I follow and drop a few because even reading the beginning of each post that comes up on my dashboard is so time-consuming. I can't read them all, so I have to be selective. And, once in a while, I drop one for other reasons. I was following a great art blog for a while, then the blogger changed course and her blog became an extreme, bitter, hateful, racist, homophobic diatribe. I wrote a few comments ---not nasty, just disagreeing. I even wrote one saying how much I had enjoyed the blog before it changed course, but didn't like the negativity in her new format. She refused to publish any comments that disagreed with her point of view, so I dropped it. Now, you aren't that kind of person, but you can't control how people react to you either.

By the way, thanks for stopping by my blog. For several days, I could read my own blog, but I couldn't approve comments or add comments to other blogs. Then suddenly it was OK. I went in to approve the comments that were supposed to be there, including one from you, but yours & several others were missing. Not sure what was going on, but seems to be OK now. And, you are right, I've been busy and not posting much lately. I need to get back into the blogging groove.

Lille Diane said...

Pffftttt! You are really not scary at all. My absence from visiting your blog (and everyone's) is due to personal obstacles and handling things on the home front. I've missed you & am happy to see you are still ruffling feathers, my friend.