Do you know how you walk into a high-end store sometimes and get attitude from the salesperson? And you think: Aren’t I in essence paying your salary because if it weren’t for people like me you wouldn’t sell stuff? And you also might possibly entertain the notion that the salesperson lives with (a) their parents or (b) five other Top Ramen-eating roommates in a cramped downtown apartment? And if they were all that, maybe they wouldn’t be hawking shit in a high-end retail store? And God bless ’em if they’re working their way through school or chose retail as a career, but then I’m thinking in that case, they’d be nice to their customers.
Being treated like I don’t matter really pisses me off. And trust me, I’m an insecure batnut, so saying that is really saying something. I often have to look in the mirror and tell myself I’m worth it. But to be dismissed? I hate it like nothing. Maybe because I’m so sensitive to feeling like I matter, but whatever the case, indifference is upsetting. Also, rather than get hurt, I get angry. (Anger by the way is supposed to stem from either fear or hurt.) (So there’s an existential nugget for you.)
Anyway, I have to say this because it’s really eating at me: There were rare times this past weekend when I was treated like I didn’t matter. And wow, did it bother me. NOT from the “my blog is great, why don’t you notice it” perspective, but from an “I’m a person too” point of view. It didn’t happen often, but once or twice, and still I have to tell you, it sucked. Because look, most of the people I ran into this weekend were women making a go out of being something other than a wife, a mother, a whatever they were before they were a blogger, and in that case, dammit, we’re all in it together. Also, support much? How about community? Why exclude? I completely don’t understand. Although I’ve come to see that it’s about the excluder, and not about the excludee, it still baffles me.
Also? I know from social anxiety. I KNOW my behavior has been misconstrued at times because I’ve been shy or scared to approach, so I’m sensitive to that. But? If someone directs a question or a comment to me? I RESPOND. Social awkwardness or not. Furthermore, if I’m frolicking and interacting with a group, and someone from “outside” my group makes an attempt at conversation, I include them. I just do. And why wouldn’t I? Redundant, I know. I’ve already said I don’t get it, right? (Sorry. I’m an overstater, as my husband will no doubt enthusiastically and somewhat defeatedly tell you.)
So here’s what happened. But first, it’s minor and so what and all that, but it’s on my mind because I want to understand and so I write about it. It’s a writerly rule I have: Write to understand myself and others.
Right, so I was at a small event. There were several of us bloggers there. I didn’t know too many people, so as I’m wont to do, I felt uncomfortableish. (Here’s another thing: If I see anyone feeling uncomfortableish, I overlove on them. I HATE to see people feel uncomfortable.) I tried to make conversation with one or two people in my vicinity, and they had none of it. NONE. OF. IT. In summary, I did not exist to them. There were smiles on their faces for their “friends” and such, but I was 100% a non-entity to these people. I don’t know. Not enough readers? I’m not in the “circle” so must be insignificant? Still befuddled. Also, this “circle?” Isn’t it dependent on people coming in and out like air in a healthy lung? And I’m one of your fans! Why do you treat me so? I could argue I’m the oxygen that gives life to your blog.
Maybe an oversight. Could be, I suppose.
But now? There are pictures of this event around the blogosphere, and as the non-entity I felt like at the time, I’m not named. Not even referred to…although every one else in the photo is titled.
I don’t care if my blog is linked. Or if my “San Diego Momma” pseudonym is used. I swear to you? I could care. But? I want to be a person.
I have to wonder what happened in this blogger’s mind when she posted the picture. Obviously, she had to go face by face to title each person. So what happened when it came to my face?
Apparently, I didn’t matter.
I hate to not matter.
I suppose that’s more about me, than about her.
So there. I’ve processed this by writing.
Thanks for listening.
(You were listening, right?)
P.S. Just one more thing (my husband is dying a small death right now): If you position yourself as authentic on your blog, but you’re not in person, and to everyone, I question you.