The Mind of Bluesleepy

A little more love to go round 23 July 2009

Filed under: Uncategorized — bluesleepy @ 10:51 pm

I’ve had something rather painful happen to me lately.

Sometimes a friend of mine will take a photo of someone that she sees wearing a questionable outfit.  She doesn’t mean anything by it; she’s just amazed that people would leave the house looking like that.  So when I saw a girl down in Newport wearing something odd, I snapped a shot and posted it to my Flickr so she would see that strange outfits aren’t limited to NYC.

All I said on the description was that the girl in question was a bad dresser, and I pointed out that the girl’s belly wasn’t covered by her shirt.

And I thought no more of it.

Until yesterday, when a rather anonymous person left a blistering comment on that photo.  I’m assuming it was a woman, since her screenname featured a female name.  But her account, if she really even had one, was completely private.  I couldn’t see her photostream or anything about her.

This woman had a point, which is that I am not the fashion police, and that it is hurtful that I posted a photo that for all intents and purposes mocked this person’s sense of fashion.  However, she went far overboard with her comments.

I was told that my awful red hair clashes terribly with my bright pink shirts, that my hair style looks horrific on me as it hits me right where my face is chubbiest, that I wear my shirts too small and I let my disgusting fat rolls hang out.  I was also accused of looking like a ghastly clown with the amount of makeup I wear, considering the bright colors, and she encouraged me to adopt a “less is more” mentality.  I can’t even remember all of what she said; she went on for several paragraphs, attacking all parts of my appearance.  I’m guessing she trolled my photostream for evidence.

Really, I know that this person must be insane because there is no call to say anything like that to anyone.  It’s even more obvious when you realize that her account being private means she can hide behind her anonymity.

Instead of confronting her, I simply deleted her comment.  But how it hurt.  Everything I am sensitive about, she hit me on.  I know my belly is fat from having babies, and I fear I will never lose it.  I’ve never been one to think I’m all that attractive anyhow, so to be criticized for being ugly really bothered me.  And when she hit on my makeup… ouch.  I’ve always been told that folks like my makeup, but maybe they are simply telling me what I want to hear, not what I need to hear.  And so now I have all kinds of doubts about my opinion of myself.

But the thing is, why do people do this??  I see this so often, folks leaving horrible comments on photos or YouTube videos or news articles.  If someone disagrees with another’s viewpoint, it becomes open season on that person.  Attack his appearance, his character, his integrity, his intelligence.  Anything to tear him down so that the other person feels superior.

I’m starting to understand why sensitive teens attempt suicide when they’ve been cyber-bullied.  It hurts.  I should be able to shake this stuff off, but it’s making me question everything I wear, everything I put on my face, every time I brush my hair.  When I was at the hairdresser’s today, I almost colored my hair brown again.  I know I get loads of compliments on the red, but what if it does look ridiculous?

I’ve lost my equilibrium a bit.  I lost a bit of confidence in myself.

And that’s what I hope people will realize, that there is a human with feelings on the other side of the screen.  The internet may feel anonymous, but you’re not communicating with robots.  They are people, deserving of our respect.

Remember when our mothers would say, “If you haven’t got anything nice to say, don’t say anything at all”?  Maybe we should amend it to, “If you wouldn’t say it to a person’s face, don’t stay it on the internet.”  It isn’t funny.  It’s downright cruel.

Let’s spread a little love instead.

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13 Responses to “A little more love to go round”

  1. poolagirl Says:

    Having recently been bashed by an anonymous fuckwit (who made a huge mistake and now I know who it really is), I can relate 1000% to what you are saying. People who hide behind the mask of being “unknown” are true pieces of whale dung served over strings of dried goat vomit. I am so sorry this happened to you, sweetie.

  2. cocoabean Says:

    I am your friend, and I would tell you the truth. Your commenter was wrong… I don’t think there’s anything wrong with your hair, your makeup, or the way you dress. So there.

  3. Miss Hiss Says:

    Personally, I’m always deeply bothered by ANYONE taking photos of other private citizens and posting them on their websites or on YouTube without their permission — but especially when they’re only put up there for others to criticise, mock or find amusement in. It’s nothing less than bullying and we need to put a firm stop to it in all its forms. I’m also pissed off beyond belief when TV news cameras take photos of fat people (chopped off at head level so they’re “anonymous”, of course) in the streets, to run when there’s a story on obesity, or of shuffling old people with walkers when there’s a story about geriatric health. I always think, “I’m so pleased that that person got dressed up that day and went out the door, thinking they were perfectly acceptable human beings entitled to take their rightful place the world, only to end up in an uncredited starring role in someone else’s freak show.” No-one has the right to exploit others’ shortcomings and expose them to widespread ridicule without their permission when they’re simply private citizens minding their own business and quietly obeying the law, and to do so is as bad (and hurtful) an act of voyeurism as sneaking around dressing rooms taking photos of people trying on clothes, or hanging around public toilets spying on people’s intimate behaviours, or hovering around playgrounds taking photos of little kids. Having said that, I’ll get off my high horse and sympathise with you about your critic. We’re all sensitive about elements of our appearance and to be confronted by total strangers poking fun at them is always a great shock, and we’re inevitably shattered by their comments — only temporarily, with any luck. The bottom line is that YOU need to be happy with yourself and the image you choose to present to the world, because then others’ words can’t damage your self-image in the long run. Some people are always going to love you and others are always going to find reasons to hate you, so matter how wonderful and caring and giving and thoughtful and kind you are in life — so all you can realistically do is listen to your heart and stick with your instincts about what makes YOU happy being who you are and looking how you look. Love, R xxx

  4. sleepyjane Says:

    I am sorry Blue, that it happened. It’s just horrible when you’re being attacked in that way. Our cleaning lady told me yesterday that I was gaining a lot of weight and I was *so* upset, for hours afterward.

    Now, let me just make clear that if I agreed with anything the hateful woman said I probably wouldn’t mention anything, but I don’t agree with anything she said. I know you didn’t write this for validation or anything. But you are beautiful!

    Your hair is fantastic and your makeup is always pretty. And so you have a soft belly. So what? You’ve had two children…which is more than I can say for myself. 😉 LOL And what angers me is she’s doing the very thing she protested about in such an ugly way.

    Please take a moment to check out this blog: http://thedemoiselles.com/ – start with the “about” section. It’ll make you see things differently. I visit that site every single day and it’s awesome, what a positive approach on YOUR BODY (not the one you wish you had) can do for morale.

    I’m totally rambling here. 🙂 Let me know what you think of the blog!

  5. OrneryPest Says:

    Well now, this here 66-year-old bald-headed geezer thinks you’re nice looking, and your hair style is perfect for you. Now, them thar folks who criticize you for a few details are just singing off key.

  6. Carolyn Says:

    Although I read you faithfully, I’m not good about leaving comments. After reading this entry however, I had too.
    I think you are BEYOND cute. Your hair is lovely, as is your makeup. I’ve never thought your clothing looked too tight. I think you always look well dressed and adoreable! You have one of the most beautiful smiles I’ve seen. Your face lights up with joy when you smile. It’s a shame this other person’s life is so full of unhappiness that she felt the need to spread it. You’re so right…we need to spread more love!

  7. purple chai Says:

    Bullies attack us at our weakest points to make themselves feel stronger and superior. Insecurity about our appearance is a weak point that many, many women share, so it was easy for this idiot to attack there. Her only purpose was to make you feel like shit because it makes her feel somehow better. Like most bullies, cyber or 3D, she couldn’t care less about the person inside her target. That said, this will still be hard to just shake off and move on, because it did hurt. Try to remember, though, that you have made these various style choices for yourself and you are happy with them, you wouldn’t have kept them if you weren’t, or if you felt that your husband wasn’t happy with them. You are adorable, and full of life, and that’s what you look like; your outside reflects your inside. Wouldn’t you hate to see what your attacker must look like if her outside reflects her inside?

    xoxoxo

  8. What a nasty hag that commenter was! I think you’re gorgeous. I just think that nasty hag commenter was 1) young, 2) anorexic and therefore in need of protein, and 3) the person in the photo you took (that would be my luck!)

    And what? Sleepyjane’s cleaning lady told her she was gaining weight? Is Sleepyjane’s cleaning lady looking for new work right now? I hope so! What the heck? If that cleaning lady is cleaning at a place where sleepyjane has no power in firing her, I believe that cleaning lady needs to find alot more around to clean so’s she has no time to tell anyone about their weight gain. Wow!

    Miss Hiss did have a good point about using anonymous photos for flickr fodder. Do you think maybe that’s what’s bothering you more? You feel a little guilty?

    And now you’ve got me wondering if my plaid pants are hitting the internet anywhere. Which cracks me up. Apparently my skin is as thick as my fat.

  9. karmacat Says:

    I’d say that commenter is a shining example of Ugly.

    Beauty and ugliness come from within. The rest is window dressing, personal choice. Some like us; some don’t. Some we like; some we don’t. Celebrate the freedom of personal choice and continue to be your beautiful self.

    (Also, that Ugly needs to get a life.)

  10. Kitty Says:

    I’ve seen pictures of you and I think you’re gorgeous. Isn’t she doing to you what she just got done chastising YOU for???? Maybe it’s the person whose picture was taken and just didn’t want to admit to it. Either way, she’s a *fill in the blank* for saying those things to you. *HUG*

  11. beccasfamilyof5 Says:

    We’ve all been there, when someone takes something personally and has to have a go. I don’t agree with all of the people all of the time, but I do not believe in saying something that isn’t nice to prove a point. Some people aren’t adult enough to accept that. Be you, forget about that stupid childish attack and be true to yourself. xxxx

  12. cardiogirl Says:

    I’m late to the post but my thoughts echo all of the sentiments up there. I firmly believe that we all have our own opinions and anything can be stated as long as it’s stated respectfully.

    And with a name.

    These people who hide behind anonymous shields are cowardly. I understand that I have a bit of a shield in that I have a user name, not my real name, but I have a blog and I sign with my user name so the other person can come back and continue the debate.

    That person who slammed you needs to allow you the opportunity to respond.

  13. No no no no no to all those negative things! You are always very attractive in your photos with the “terrible red hair” and “too much makeup” Don’t change a thing, you are a lovely lady inside and out. Makes ya wonder what an ugly ole crone that writer is, both inside AND outside! You are always neat and clean, dressed well and with well dressed little girls.


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