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Friday, December 17, 2010

Blog Friend Feature: Because Blog Friends Are Real

I've known this week's Blog Friend Feature for less than a year...and yet, I feel like I've known her forever. I reach for my BB and message her when I need to vent or celebrate something. I've talked to her on the phone even though I hate talking on the phone. She's become a real friend.

You may already know her, as her blog is the home of Post-it Note Tuesdays. Meet Kristen of Only Parent Chronicles.

Hello to you all! I'm so happy to be the BFF at Things I Can't Say this week. I always have such a great time visiting all the featured blogs and was thrilled when Shell asked if I'd like to be featured today. I mean, obviously the answer was yes. Who wouldn't want to be Shell's BFF? Then it hit me. To be Shell's BFF, I would have to write a guest post! Yikes! After months of great posts from amazing writers all over Blognia, it was going to be my turn. Honestly, I felt truly inadequate. Fortunately, I have known Shell long enough to be "comfortable in my skin" around her.

It seems a popular question in Blognia is, "Why do you blog?" Every time I try to answer that question concisely, I get stumped. You see, when I started blogging, I was going through a period where I really couldn't believe events in my life were happening to me. Naturally, I thought being an only parent of an obnoxious boy and a special needs girl, I was guaranteed years of blog fodder. On top of that, I was single and dating. I was confident that alone would give me plenty of funny stories. Sadly, I quickly discovered my life was boring and far less entertaining difficult to translate into short vignettes. Partly because a lot what happens are my children's stories and not mine to share, partly because shortly after beginning Only Parent Chronicles, I got into a serious relationship, and partly because I really just don't write that well.

So why then  do I blog? The short answer is Community.  I know there is regular debate IRL as to whether blog friends are real. I can tell you without a doubt, they are. In the last year and a half, I have developed some of the deepest, richest, and truest friendships of my lifetime in the blogging community. Not only have I "met" people that I turn to when I need advice or an objective ear, I have also had the opportunity to meet other bloggers face to face and cultivate those relationships into real, tangible things.  Through blogging, I have been able to develop friendships by choice, not circumstance. I have met women that I talk to every day. We have created our own support system of people we can reach out to for anything.

In the last year and a half, I have been through the birth of a child, the death of a sibling, divorce, childhood illness, special needs testing, an infertile friend carrying a baby to term, unemployment, reemployment, dissolution of friendships, and celebration of friendships. These experiences and the emotions that they came with were all real. They late night or early morning shout outs via text or email of friends in need of a shoulder to cry on or an ear to bend are all real. The bonds that we've forged? They are all real.

The next time someone asks you if blog friends are real, I challenge you to take these things into consideration. I know, without a doubt that the community I have built and the friendships I have made through blogging are 100% real. That, my friends, is why I blog.

How about you? Why do you blog? Have you made irreplaceable friendships through blogging? What keeps you coming back?

Only Parent Chronicles

Please leave Kristen some comment love here and then go follow her blog if you don't already!

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Blogger KristinFilut said...

Less than a year than we've known each other? Say it ain't so? It seems like I've been bending your ear for way longer than that! Thanks for the feature today! So glad to call you my friend!

December 17, 2010 at 8:26 AM  
Blogger Oka said...

I have been blogging for about 5 years on different forums. In that time I have made several of the closest friends. Friends I can't imagine not having in my life even if they are 1500 miles away. These friendships ring truer than 99% of IRL "friendships".

Shell, hope you are hanging in there.

December 17, 2010 at 8:34 AM  
Blogger Sorta Southern Single Mom said...

Pretty much what she said... community...that's why I blog. And since my blog is technically anonymous, I can tell y'all things I might not tell my friend IRL.

December 17, 2010 at 8:43 AM  
Blogger Unknown said...

I agree! Blog friends are real! I find myself thinking about you all throughout the day. Wondering if your trials are going smoothly that day. Or I have thought about something that you've said to me about a trial of my own. It's the wierdest most unexpected part of blogging for me. I never thought I would make online friends. but I have!

December 17, 2010 at 9:06 AM  
Blogger Liz said...

YAY for Kristen!!

December 17, 2010 at 9:37 AM  
Blogger Heather said...

Thanks Shell for introducing me to another cool blogger. I can't wait to go check her out.

December 17, 2010 at 9:38 AM  
Blogger MrsJenB said...

Awesome post, and so true! Great to meet you!

Hope you're hanging tough, Shell.

December 17, 2010 at 9:55 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Kristen is awesome! Great post!

December 17, 2010 at 10:49 AM  
Blogger Andrea said...

I started off blogging for me. Just to say what I wanted to say, get it out there, have a new, fresh outlet, and then it turned into -- hey -- these people are ANSWERING me. They're talking TO me. They like me! They really like me! ;) LOve to you both!! Mwah!

December 17, 2010 at 11:12 AM  
Blogger Macey said...

This is absolutely beautiful. I have to say I started blogging not expecting any of the friends and community that we have here.
IT'S AMAZING and life changing really. Blog friends ARE real friends.

December 17, 2010 at 12:00 PM  
Blogger TheBabyMammaChronicles said...

I definitely think that's the main reason I keep blogging now, though it's not why I started.

December 17, 2010 at 12:21 PM  
Blogger Crystal said...

I've only been blogging for 4 mos (I'm a bloggy virgin!) but have met some wonderful and simply honest women that I think I will treasure and be friends with for a very long time!

December 17, 2010 at 12:44 PM  
Blogger Katie Hurley, LCSW said...

I've only been at this a few months, and I really look forward to finding new blog friends through Shell's BFF posts. I started doing my parenting strategies blog as a way to "work" from home and keep helping others while raising my little ones, but I find that I, too, really love the sense of community and meeting so many great women!


December 17, 2010 at 12:45 PM  
Anonymous SharleneT said...

I started blogging at the request of my readers and then discovered that blogging is the 21st Century's kaffeklatch! We get together and share joys and sorrows. But, even more delightful and important, we find friends -- more than we could ever meet in our real lives.

And, these friends have something almost impossible in the real world, a common interest thread to develop an hones friendship.

In real life, we're thrown together in school, jobs, and church. People we may share interests with may or may not live nearby so we miss opportunities.

Blogging brings us together in support, caring, and love that can go beyond 'real' friendships because it can be done at home at any time and is reciprocated within hours(!), sometimes.

I'm grateful for all the friends I've met through blogging and look forward to meeting even more of you! Happy Holidays and come visit when you can...

Check out my other blog for a Christmas Miracle - 27 Puppies and Teddies

December 17, 2010 at 1:02 PM  
Blogger Imaginative Me said...

Already stalking you both! :) I blog for three reasons: I LOVE to write, even though I may not be good at it; Writing down all the events of my twisted, mangled life seems to make it seem less important and stressful; to meet all the amazing women my bestie speaks sooooo highly of.
I'm not a frequent poster or commentor lately, because life has seriously thrown me some wicked curves, but I haven't forgotten anyone.

December 17, 2010 at 1:20 PM  
Blogger Kir said...

WONDERFUL POST...and I completely agree.
I don't blog often, but the blogs I follow I read as much as I can and I consider these women my support system, my confidants...my sanity most days.

I was amazed in the beginning of my blogging with how easily it is to become so close to these ladies (and some men) but then I realized that as it is with anything in life, if you connect with someone it doesn't really matter how it happened, just that IT DID.

December 17, 2010 at 1:28 PM  
Anonymous Megan (Best of Fates) said...

Blog friends are definitely real.

Except for those ones that one day you go to call and realize they were only a figment of your imagination.

Those friends aren't real.

Weird, right?

December 17, 2010 at 2:02 PM  
Anonymous Craig said...

The community thing – I think what you said is right on. In Blognia you “develop friendships by choice, not circumstance.”

And your questions...

Why? “Because I think about God so much, and Love so much, that if I don’t write – the words have nowhere to go.”

“Friendships”? They take time – I’m in no hurry, only been blogging a few weeks. But I get delight EVERY DAY in the reading of others.

What keeps me coming back is the depth of the people. The words spilled out are hearts in prose. I’m learning new things every day. Learned from this post too. Thank you.

December 17, 2010 at 2:24 PM  
Blogger BNM said...

I agree 100% that blog friends are real im able to talk to some of my blog friends about things i dont even feel comfortable sharing IRL

December 17, 2010 at 3:33 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Blog friends are 100% real. In the short time I have been blogging I have made some great friends.

December 17, 2010 at 5:09 PM  
Blogger MommyLovesStilettos said...

I blog because it's free therapy ;)

December 17, 2010 at 5:10 PM  
Blogger AiringMyLaundry said...

I blog because it keeps me sane.

December 17, 2010 at 6:58 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Awwww. I knew you were all real! lol =)

December 18, 2010 at 1:14 AM  
Blogger Babes Mami said...

I love Kristin!

I think that lots of my blog friend are more 'real' then my actual IRL friends. My blog friends get it, they go through the same things and aren't afraid to talk about it. If I have a problem I can think of several people I could email and rant and rave and a couple I can text when I'm mad and they will be there. I have IRL friends who just do not get me and I love having friends that do. I also don't have many parent friends who parent the way I do (ie I don't spend my days complaining about my 'burdens' while high on drugs or smashed on booze) and there are SO many moms who LOVE their kids (even when being driven crazy) and WANT to be parents and I love that too.

Blog friends are most definitely read!

December 18, 2010 at 1:10 PM  
Blogger MommaKiss said...

Here's my thing - my blog friends, are real to me. To my husband? He's a tool and has No. Clue.

However, there are people in this world who know more about me and who I am than my family.

great choice, shell!!!

December 18, 2010 at 10:39 PM  
Anonymous Making It Work Mom said...

I am not sure why I blog either, but I do. And I love to read lots of other blogs.

Great post

December 18, 2010 at 11:58 PM  
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