Hell hath no fury like mom bloggers on a warpath, as Calgary DJ Buzz Bishop learned when he mentioned in a post for Babble:
If I were to be absolutely honest, my older son is my favorite of the two. He and I are adventurous partners in crime, and I can't imagine life without him. He was an accident waiting to happen, and I'm so glad it did.
I am not going to bother too much weighing in on the response; Lisa Rankin already did a good job of that here in the Huffington Post. What it does highlight is the minefield that personal and parental blogging can be. If you are not a parenting expert or a TYPE of parent -- you know: the attachment parent, the home schooler, the helicopter, the free ranger -- after the funny or gross parental anecdotes, topics can run a bit thin.
The topics are especially thin if we can't dare touch the touchy subjects without fear of a torch and pitchfork crowd yelling for your blood. If you're on Facebook or Twitter, the touchy subjects cover a lot of ground.
Do you dare mention you let the kids eat Nestle chocolate or heaven forefend, that you actually bottle fed them with NESTLE FORMULA!!?? Do you mention that you let your young wards watch non-educational TV? What if you let it be known that you may have fed them JUNK FOOD! Any of these things can spark mass unfollows and negative comments.
Being a parent blogger is a bit of a social club and you don't want to lose your membership to that club. I don't care how much you tell me you have a blog PURELY for the love of writing, or it is just for your family, or to record your precious child's every moment for the future. I don't buy it.
If it was just for the writing you would have a journal, not a blog that is open to the public. Not only do you want your page rank to grow, you want those visitor numbers to swell. You want to be read, at the least. At the most, you get the access to some of the amazing opportunities that lie out there for good parental bloggers.
Amazing opportunities may just be connected with like-minded people. I LOVE the group of bloggers, Facebookers and Twitterers that I now consider my friends. They have been my lifeline to sanity. You may also want to be invited to interesting events and conferences. You MIGHT want to be considered a "someone" in the parental blogging community. It could get you a book deal or a TV show. We ALL want to be The Pioneer Woman. Okay, that last part might be just me, but I strongly doubt it.
What we don't want is to attract the wrath of mom and or dad bloggers. There have been awful flame wars between a blogger and their fans versus another faction. Think the Jets and the Sharks but with nasty words and sometimes death threats. It CAN get that silly online.
Normal parental judgment is magnified online. People are a lot freer in expressing their outrage online than they are to your face, and that can be hurtful if you are not used to it or your online image is key to your brand and lifestyle.
Words can hurt so every time I think about a new topic for my blog, I wonder: Am I strong enough to take the heat from those that may disagree with me? Controversy might give you lots of hits, but are you tough enough?
I honestly don't think Bishop said anything wrong. I don't think his kids will read what he said as some terrible cruel statement either. I personally think people made too much of it all. But that is the way the Internet works.
This is a bit of concern however, since blogs are supposed to be honest. How can we be honest and true if we fear the wrath of our peers?
Follow Kerry Sauriol on Twitter: www.twitter.com/CrunchyCarpets