A lot of bloggers have had blogging friends become real friends, but has anyone had a friend become a blogging friend?
Before blogging, I didn’t know anyone who had a blog. I didn’t realise how popular blogging was and didn’t even know anybody who read them. In fact, I didn’t really read them. I did once I started and found similar sites, but before then, I likely read them as just another article or website. I just liked the idea of writing my thoughts, stories and reviews somewhere.
When I started my blog, I didn’t tell anyone except one friend. I wanted to be anonymous, but after a couple of years, I finally found out Twitter was a thing for bloggers and started to put myself out there a little more. Before that I had about 50 followers and thought it was incredible that anybody cared what I wrote. I started to tell friends when the blog started to gain a bit of popularity. I only told actual friends though as it still feels like a personal thing to me – it’s not on Facebook or anything just yet!
They all loved the idea of it, surprisingly. The friend that already knew had tried to start one around the same time as me, but life got in the way. I always thought she might start it up again, but she hasn’t yet.
Of my other friends, one was an avid Zoella and co fan. She definitely loved the idea of starting one and is quite creative and loves writing. It makes sense she’d love to do it. The others, however, don’t seem to follow them in the same way, although Zoella and co’s popularity certainly made it a much more popular hobby. Since opening up, every single one of those friends (I’m really not exaggerating!) has said that they’d like to start one. One friend in particular doesn’t even read mine, and has no idea what’s involved. I’m not saying you have to know everything when starting and think everyone should be able to do as they like and create and write wherever they want. I’m just surprised that some want to, and it seems to be a direct effect of me telling them that I have one.
I encourage my friend’s to do it, because I think blogging’s great and I think they’re great! There are some friends that I know I would enjoy reading anything they wrote! I just feel weird that now that mine has finally started to take off, it feels a little bit like ‘If Tina can do it, so can I’. I suppose I should be happy that I’ve introduced them to something great, but it makes me feel like I’ve worked for 4 years towards something, only for it not to be ‘my thing’ anymore. I know that’s selfish, but I’ve worked hard. Not purposely, I enjoy every second and don’t see as work as such, but I’ve learned a lot from experience. I’ve always been the one who loves writing and creating. One friend doesn’t even write notes, let alone personal essays. Yet as soon as I told her I had this, she instantly decided she wants one too.
I knew nobody doing it and had no help whatsoever learning how to put one together or what to write or how to write it. I didn’t even know how to start except for Googling the life out of free blog sites. Now I get asked questions and I don’t want to be shady, but I feel like I did all the work and now others won’t have to because they have me.
This is such a selfish and egotistical post, but I really liked the idea of having my own little hobby. I like going to events alone and meeting new people through it. Nobody in Leeds has helped me network at all, and I’ve finally started meeting people through blogging, only for the same people to expect to latch on to it. And I know I’m being a bitch, but I love having my own world here finally. I’ve been here 5 years, and worked in a tiny office with barely any colleagues, and had few friends. Those friends haven’t tried to get me in with their groups or friends. In fact, they kept us completely separate and didn’t even invite me on the odd night out with them or for dinner, etc. Now that I finally have my own thing going on, it’s like it’s being crashed.
I feel the need again to express that I think anyone should do it if they really want to, I just feel the main reason for some is seeing me attend events or get free gifts and meals sometimes. I know that’s a bad starting point for anyone and maybe they just see how much I enjoy it, but it’s mainly my little world that I worked for and created for myself feeling invaded. They have their hobbies, they have their friends, is it too much for me to try and have my own for a while? I’m not such a bitch that I purposely hold the two worlds apart, I’ve taken people to plus one events, for free meals and cocktails, and let them try my gifts. But I feel like that’s why they’re finally so interested in what I do with my time. Before it was ‘What’s a blog? I want one’, now it’s ‘I’m definitely starting one’. There’s even one that laughs at me taking pictures of food, yet wants to do food reviews, and when I asked if they’d taken a look at mine, they responded that they hadn’t. Come on! It’s like it’s a matter of me having something they don’t. Which probably isn’t it, but I can’t stop seeing it that way.
The worst part of it is that if friends do start blogging, I have to be supportive. I can’t say I won’t help them with all of their needs, and there will be many! I’d be attending events with them, introducing them to people I’ve spent a year getting to know, even though I had to turn up alone to all of the events and brave it. I just feel a little bit like my new exciting life through blogging might get a little smaller and won’t feel like my own experience anymore. I can share a hobby, I can share an event, but I don’t want to have to share all of the work and experience that I’ve built up over 4 years to give someone who just copies me an easy ride. The networking is something I’ve felt quite bitter about too. Where were these people when I had no friends here? Where were they when I had to wait for my boyfriend to visit to go new places and check out new restaurants, etc? Where were they when I fancied going out? Oh yeah, they were with their other friends and didn’t want me latching onto their own life that they’d created here. Blogging is the one thing I have, it’s the only place I’ve met amazing new people really, and it’s something that makes me finally love my life in Leeds. I feel like having people shove their way into that makes me want to leave it behind and find a new ‘all mine’ hobby.
It’s easy to think I should just say go for it and not help or get involved, but that’s not in me! I know I’ll feel bad holding back on anything that might support my friends, despite their lack of support in some ways.
Does anyone else have a similar situation? Is this ridiculously petty (okay, I’m pretty sure it is), and if so, any idea how I can make myself feel less like this?
To any friends that actually read this and other blogs, it’s not about you, and thank you for your support!