Monday, October 08, 2018

I'm Holding Up This Space for Me

In light of the Kavanaugh hearings, there's been a lot of talk of whether or not to unfriend people on Facebook, whether it's productive to "argue about politics" online, etc. They're the same discussions we rehash over and over, though they never really lose relevance.

My Facebook page, blog, twitter is for me, first and foremost. I don't hold that space up for others unless I decide to do exactly that. I hold up space for discussion every day: in my classroom, in my online classes, and through my work which is in service to others. My anger, my inspiration, my personal struggles, I choose who is privy to those. I choose carefully.

I use my Facebook privacy settings like they're integral to my well-being...because they are. I have Facebook split into some specific groups:

Restricted - This usually includes folks I grew up with or those who live in my hometown whose views are wildly polarized to mine. I live in, arguably, the most conservative district in an already-conservative Texas. I've actually had relatives ask me, "Do you get death threats?" for some of the things I post, and the answer is no. No, because I choose who sees my political postings. I know my audience and I control my message.

Friends - I post to my Friends list usually when it's a well-worded, fairly kind, or personal post of interest to those around me. Family pictures, funny memes of a crowd-pleasing variety, animals videos.

Public - The very least of the categories...artwork, more crowd-pleasing or funny posts, profile details like photos or headers. The basics. Stuff I don't mind my students seeing if they're creeping.

I've had lots of folks I care deeply about, suggest that I stand up as an example to those who disagree with me. Be a beacon of light and hope. Be kind. Put out positivity. Sadly, I'm human, and sometimes I don't have it in me. Sometimes I just want to say "motherfucker" and rant.  See my recent Facebook memes. I'll say it again.  I hold up space for myself. I hold up space for myself online. I love sharing with friends, I love feedback, but at the end of the day, I'm doing my rational discussing of the issues with people in person. That's my job every. single. day. I hope something I've written along the way touched or inspired you, but mostly I'm interested in inspiring myself to keep going, to keep fighting, to keep believing in and taking action, and learning more about my own white feminism, ableism, etc.


  1. Absolutely! I'm going to have to rethink my Facebook settings - I've already had to unfriend my BIL, a friend, and a couple of cousins. I don't so much regret it; they weren't people I had much to do with anyway. But I'm not convincing anyone to change their minds by my facebook posts, that's for sure.

    1. It's changed everything for me in a really good way! Facebook is not the place for convincing. I'm absolutely sure of that.

  2. I like your last bit about inspiring yourself and learning. That's what I'm trying to use my time to do instead of obsessing about other people's shitty beliefs that I can't change anyway because they literally aren't based on facts. Leaving FB was the best thing I could have ever done toward that goal. Sometimes I wonder if I will go back there after this dumpster fire is all over.

    1. Thanks! I have plenty to learn, and I've gotten to a point where I just have to dig in. I've been so tempted to leave, though I do find that I connect with so much of my book tribe there...that's the ONLY reason to stay!

  3. Yes. Love this. A friend of mine says she doesn't educate on FB because that's what she does at work and she's not interested in doing it with her friends/family. I can get behind that. We have to do what we can to protect our sanity, and we get to choose what those things are. I'm so glad you posted this.

    1. I do have mixed feelings. And where I fail at NOT educating on Facebook is maybe not a fail at all? I still get on my high horse about shitty Christianity and about not being racist, xenophobic, homophobic assholes. So yeah. lol I'm not good at not educating I guess. Mostly I share those posts with people who already agree with me and TALK about those issues in person. That's the sanity-saving bit, I think.

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