March 29, 2008

On being insulted

This post has been a long time in coming. When I first started blogging I did it to keep my family and friends up to date on our lives as we moved far away from everyone we knew. As we became pregnant and had our twins it became even more important for me to blog to keep family in touch - but also to chronicle the lives of my kids and how much I love them. I want this blog to be a gift to them in the future.

But somewhere along the way I gained readers who weren’t related to me. This was unexpected but extremely gratifying. I put a counter on my blog and I began to be consumed by how many people were reading my blog on a daily basis. Many times my choice of blog posts were aimed more at these anonymous readers rather than my own kids. I had lost touch with who my audience really is.

It was then that I decided that I would re-focus my blog. Even though I might not appeal to some who were reading, I decided to focus almost entirely on fatherhood and stories about raising my two little ones. Through this transition I did lose some readers. Oh well. While it was hard to lose that readership I decided it was worth it. The only readers that really matter are Swee’Pea and TheMonk.

Not that I don’t appreciate all of you who continue to follow our story. You are certainly welcome to come along for the ride and I do appreciate the comments that most of you leave - showing your connectedness to the story that I have laid out. It allows me to feel bonded with many of you who are going through similar struggles and joys or can identify with what I am writing about.

But not every commenter has been welcome. My post immediately before this one, for example, produced an unexpected comment. In this post I played on the time-honored tradition of overprotective fathers when it comes to fathering a girl as well as my impending gun ownership. And, in my typical style, I tried to produce a laugh out of these two converging stories in my life. I liked what I wrote - even proud of the way it came together. Some of you who commented got it. You laughed along with me and I was pleased that you appreciated my sense of humor.

Then, yesterday my good friend MetroDad linked to me in a post and I got quite a few new visitors from his blog. One woman, a new visitor named Kat, left a comment that really, really bothered me. She called me sexist for writing about “protecting my daughter’s virtue” and asked why I wasn’t writing about protecting my son’s virtue. She was disappointed that I was “cultivating sexism.”

I have never been insulted on my own blog before. I have heard about it happening from other bloggers but never experienced it myself. I have only deleted one other comment on my blog before this one but I deleted it. Obviously she has not read the many, many posts I have written about how I want my daughter to grow up (this post, for example) and she didn’t know me. My attempt at humor was, to her, a sexist remark and I didn’t agree so I decided to remove her comment, send her an email explaining my thoughts on her comment and move on. But it still bothered me. And it didn’t die because today she left another comment asking why I deleted her previous comment.

So, I submit this to you, dear readers (old and new). I am who I am. I know that I am a good person who wants the very best for my children. I know that I have a good sense of humor but that not everyone may appreciate it all of the time. I know that I have respect for women, people of color and those who differ from me. I am not sexist. Nor am I perfect.

Because this is my personal blog and something that I take pride in and will someday want my children to read without being influenced by someone who has an impression of me that isn’t accurate because she does not know me AT ALL, I deleted the comment. As much as I love comments, I feel like I have the discretion to decide who comments on my blog. And THAT, Kat, is why I deleted your comment.

So, if you don’t like what you are reading, then there are an estimated 50 million other blogs out there to find something that which you can better relate. Some of you have connected to what I am writing here and I appreciate that. If you haven’t connected, then I encourage you to move on.

That is all I have to say about that.

Now, back to regularly scheduled programming.


  1. That’s ridiculous. Why do people feel that they need to spread their judgment and ignorance. You write a personal blog and it is clearly from the heart, hence the comment effecting you as it has.

    I, for one, enjoy the narrative you provide and thank you for letting me tag along for the ride.

    Comment by Whit — March 29, 2008 @ 11:35 am

  2. I think you are a wonderful father and an inspired writer. I think you should keep deleting Kat.
    Why oh why do some parents feel the need to find ways of belittling instead of encouraging each other?

    Comment by Judy — March 29, 2008 @ 11:52 am

  3. amen, brother. it always trips me out when i read a negative comment from others (not at my blog because i have so few comments,period but when scrolling other blogs). and it makes me laugh and be a bit annoyed at this kat person as she has obviously not been reading you long enough to get you. you keep a really wonderful journal for your little ones and though i do not know you personally, i feel that we readers get a great picture of who you are as a daddy to your two. good for you for keeping your blog just the way you want it.

    Comment by mamie — March 29, 2008 @ 1:38 pm

  4. I am a lurker that had to come out of the woodwork about the “Kat” comment. How dare she??? You are right that she doesn’t know you or has not read your other posts. I have followed your blog for about a year and have gone back to read your archives and look at your pictures. I have so enjoyed “peaking” into your life with the twins. You are a GREAT father and even though I don’t know you that comes across very well in your writing. You just have to ignore that “nutcases” out there - and there are many. I always look forward to reading your blog and watching the your two “blessing” grow up. The are so beautiful and it is very clear they are well loved. Sorry about this rant - but some people rile me up. God bless you and your family. Keep up the good work. Susan

    Comment by Susan Beard — March 29, 2008 @ 2:03 pm

  5. I think that some people post comments just to get a rise out of someone. I thought your post was pretty funny and not sexist at all and even if it was…hey…it’s your blog. :)Don’t change a thing! You are hillarious!

    Comment by dawn — March 29, 2008 @ 2:36 pm

  6. I just wanted to say that I really enjoy your blog and how you are raising your twins, thanks for letting me go along on the ride.

    Secondly I still can’t believe the people out there, I read the post and thought it was funny. I was touched that the gentleman had made this gun for you and thought enough of you that he wanted to give it to you.

    You were just being humourous - I got the joke as well.

    Anyways I think your great and so is the blog and your twins are just the cutest.

    All the best

    Comment by MIch — March 29, 2008 @ 3:22 pm

  7. Well I guess now you will have another use for that gun… I have read your blog for a long time now and am grateful to be along for the ride. Screw Kat. Write on, stranger friend!

    Comment by memphislis — March 29, 2008 @ 6:29 pm

  8. Stick to your guns, literally and figuratively. It’s your blog, and you can delete, change, and rewrite whatever you want. The glory of the blog is that you have all those powers. The downside is that all that stuff is out in the world for anyone to comment on, and they will. I’m a lurker, but I think I’ve left a comment or two on your site before. I am a fraternal twin myself, so I love hearing about what your twins are up to. Keep up the good work, and do whatever you think you have to do

    Comment by Amanda — March 29, 2008 @ 6:41 pm

  9. There are those who just like to talk smack to others. I have one on my site that points out the flaws in many of the actions I write about.

    You’re not going to delete this are you?

    Comment by Chag — March 29, 2008 @ 7:27 pm

  10. I’m mainly a lurker too, having only left a comment or two, but I had to chime in. Just wanted to say “Hang in there” and keep on doing what you’re doing.

    You’re doing great. And those of us that are loyal readers, we KNOW it.

    Comment by Kate — March 29, 2008 @ 8:56 pm

  11. Hi!
    I have not left a comment before this.
    But all I can say is that unwanted comments are just the downside of blogging.
    But I’m sure there are more friends made than foe.

    p/s Angsty and hormonal teens can behave worse than political adults. =P

    Btw, I’m from Singapore and I love your blog.

    Comment by Dah — March 30, 2008 @ 3:28 am

  12. Well, I’m going to say that I agree with all of the comments I read today. I also knew you were joking and I thought it was funny how those 2 things kinda came together.

    I will say that I read your blog, because (that should be bold and italics hehehe) you are so respectful of your wife and the way you are with your kiddies. I have never come across a word or even a line where I thought ‘huh?’. As I don’t have children of my own, I refrain from commenting when an ‘educational’ issue comes up on a blog (somehow I am reading a lot of parenting blogs) as a) I do not live the same life the parent is living, b) cultural differences mean different views/ways of parenting and c) I wouldn’t appreciate it either if someone told me I’m bringing up my kids the ‘wrong’ way.

    All of this just to say, keep on writing the way you have and raising them kids the way you are!!!

    Cheers Eva

    Comment by Eva — March 30, 2008 @ 3:53 am

  13. I also am a lurker, but in reading your post I had to step up. I don’t know where “Kat” gets her nerve. Some people just need to stir the Crap up, and live their lives through the drama they can create, no matter how big or small. Please know that “Kat” was truly wronged in her comments! Never in my life have I had the opportunity to read something so touching and true to life, as your blog is. I don’t know you personally, but feel connected to you through your blog. I too am a parent of a 3 yo toddler girl. You are a kindred soul to us other parents out there. The way you write about your family is so touching and true to heart, and I wish everyone was like you. Keep your chin up!

    Comment by Amanda — March 30, 2008 @ 4:18 am

  14. Don’t let the critics get you down, you do a great job and anyone who would leave a rude comment obviously hasn’t read much of your blog. Your humor is great and your love for your family is even more wonderful and obvious. From one twin parent to another, thanks for all you do and share.

    Comment by Laurie — March 30, 2008 @ 5:04 am

  15. Ack, she sounds like a fun person to be around, lol…why would someone feel the need to post something so judgemental on someone elses blog? I would never do such a thing, well unless it was a blog that was more of a debate kind of blog, which I hate those things anyway! You keep doing what you do, unfortunately there’s always going to be other “kats” here and there, just delete them! Those are just unhappy people!

    Comment by Tanya — March 30, 2008 @ 5:43 am

  16. I’m sorry that you got insulted. Some people’s children. *shakes head*

    BUT I’m so glad that you know who you’re writing for and how you determined so quickly that Kat’s opinion doesn’t matter. (Can I take lessons?!?) Good for you!

    As a long-time reader, I feel that I know you and can tell when you’re joking. (And I’m pretty dang sure that if any woman messed with your Monk, she’d quickly see that she’d made a big mistake. If you weren’t quick enough with your newly-found gunning skillz, she’d have quite the blogging community hot on her tracks. ^_^)

    Just be assured that some people don’t quite know how to play well. And you do know that you have a following who adore/enjoy your writing and allowing us to peek into this facet of your life. I know that I appreciate it.

    Comment by Allanna — March 30, 2008 @ 9:42 am

  17. I’d not worry about it, friend. I LOVE YOUR BLOG and I read it all the time. You are a wonderful father and your stories about your life make me laugh and smile. I hope that one day my husband and I can be as great of parents as you and your wife are.

    Comment by Amanda W — March 30, 2008 @ 2:01 pm

  18. It stuns me that some people don’t know… Hello? Kat dear? This thing called the Internet? Similar to other gatherings of words, like newspapers and books, if you don’t like what you’re reading, you are free to go away. Amazing, no?

    Comment by Woman with Kids — March 30, 2008 @ 3:24 pm

  19. It does stink my friend. You put so much of yourself into your blog and share so much, then some moron comes along and attacks. I’ve been called a b–ch on The Blogfathers, and the N-word on my own. I’ve even been told that I’m not black enough. I delete those comments and suffer in silence knowing that what I’m doing is a good thing. You’re doing a good thing too. Thanks for letting us all peek into the window of your fatherhood experience.

    Comment by Keith — March 30, 2008 @ 4:18 pm

  20. I’m behind you all the way. This is YOUR blog. YOU decide what gets published and deleted. Hell, you can delete this if you want. ;-) If you decide not to delete this? You can EDIT it. You can do whatever you want with it.

    And, Keith, dang. What is WRONG with people? I’m glad both of you stay strong and keep at it. You make Blogland a wonderful place.

    Comment by Becky — March 30, 2008 @ 4:44 pm

  21. I am delurking to join the gang and say that I totally agree! If I read a blog that I don’t agree with, I move on with my life. I have way too many other things to do than leave negative comements to someone I don’t know. It’s your blog and you don’t have to allow comments at all. So there! :)

    Comment by Jeanne — March 30, 2008 @ 5:12 pm

  22. I’m mostly a lurker but I thought I would let you know that I thought the story was hilarious. I knew you were joking. Of course I live in Texas where when Daddy says he’s getting the shotgun it really does mean something. On a serious note, I do think girls need their daddy’s to protect them, so do boys. Just in different ways.

    Comment by Someone Being Me — March 30, 2008 @ 5:54 pm

  23. Good for you for just deleting her comment and then posting about your feelings on the issue! You are allowing those of us “strangers” to read about you and your family and if anyone doesn’t like your blog/stories/writing, well “off with them!” Like you said there are a billion others to read! I truly enjoy your stories and feel as though Swee’Pea and The Monk are friends of my kids. (Kind of strange, isn’t it????)

    Comment by K and J's mom — March 30, 2008 @ 6:15 pm

  24. Ok, ok, I admit I am a lurker all the way from Denver. I found your blog through links from Genuine more than a year ago. You always bring a smile to my face and it has been great to see the twins grow and reach those milestones. Thank you very much for sharing and please keep up the great work!

    Comment by Laura — March 30, 2008 @ 6:18 pm

  25. I love your blog and though I know we have some different parenting styles, it doesn’t bother me because most of what I read shows how much you love your wife and kids and that is what matters.

    Comment by Julie — March 30, 2008 @ 6:41 pm

  26. Eh, poop on ‘em. I was receiving so many stupid comments from people I had to put on comment moderation just to weed them out. Some of my favorites: “You forced your children to be born!! They didn’t ask to come in to this world!!” … “Get some help before you hurt yourself and those unfortunate children!!” … “You make everything a drama. Look at Kate with the sextuplets. She never complains!!” … “Your husband does everything. What do you do? You write a stupid blog!!”

    If I let them, these comments could really hurt my feelings and zap me of precious energy. But the truth is, I think they are left just to get a rise out of me (or my readers who go NUTS over the insults), which is why I delete anything that is derogatory against me - or people who read my site.

    Keep up the good work, you’re doing a great job. But you already know that.

    Comment by Jen @ amazingtrips — March 30, 2008 @ 8:27 pm

  27. Cultivating sexism? Seriously? I read your post and though it intelligently written, writty and hilariously funny in a couple of spots.

    This faceless person that has insulted you in your own little blogging world should, while entitled to her opinion, perhaps take a lesson in humour.

    I have yet to link to your blog from my own as our topics have not converged yet, but there will come a day I’m sure.

    Keep it up….your blog is in my favorites for a reason!

    Comment by MadWoman Meg — March 30, 2008 @ 9:00 pm

  28. Just thought I’d delurk for a minute and say I check your blog frequently and love every minute of your writing and your family and like everyone else, felt the urge to pop in and give you a re-sounding aaaaaaamen, brother! Your blogs = your rules … that’s just how it works.
    I once wrote a post on my blog, linking to someone else’s and as to be expected, my “funny” commentary wasn’t so clearly conveyed. Sadly, it was also in relation to parenting (of which I don’t do). So the author of the original post commented on my post (man, this sounds convoluted) and he was upset. OMG! I apologized PROFUSELY b/c I could see how what I was saying, without knowing how I “speak” (read: type), sounded horribly offensive. So I posted another entry clarifying myself and blathered on and on about how sad I was that I offended a fellow blogger. Needless to say, we “made up” ;-). Jeez, that was such a long story. All I mean to say is, you can type what you want, people can read and lurk or post comments but you’re the boss of your own blog, my friend. Because you are actually the editor and publisher, YOU DA BOSS!

    Comment by Sara — March 30, 2008 @ 9:16 pm

  29. Okay, I clearly should NOT skip reading the blogs on Saturdays…

    I have always appreciated the humorous peek that your blog has given us on your life. And anyone who can’t take that for what it is and enjoy your writing needs to… go somewhere else.

    But hey, on the up side, you found a way to get the lurkers to comment! Woo-hoo!!

    Comment by Deanna — March 30, 2008 @ 10:35 pm

  30. Well, it is the Internet and thus there will always be someone trolling or flaming from behind their mask of anonymity. FWIW, I don’t think there was anything wrong with your entry or joke.

    Comment by daphne — March 31, 2008 @ 4:54 am

  31. I think that that is the natural reaction for any man…let alone a father. My husband teaches high school and coached basketball and he had the same reaction when one of his “girls” dated someone he didn’t care for.

    Oh…and Kat…you sure know how to unleash hellfire don’t you? Why didn’t you read a couple of other posts before you made your judgement…Hmmm I wonder how “Judge not lest ye be judged” gets interpreted by you.

    Comment by Aunt Bean — March 31, 2008 @ 7:53 am

  32. You a sexist? Ha! That would be like calling you a serial
    killer…it just couldn’t be further from reality! Besides,
    your mother would disown you! Oh, and I think I saw Kat on
    Jerry Springer last week.

    Comment by Aunt Raina — March 31, 2008 @ 8:18 am

  33. Give me a break.

    Speaking as a father of 2 girls, I have, many times, said something similar… and if I am sexist because I want to protect my daughter’s virtues, than sexist am I.

    Kat needs to get a sense of humor and realize that this is YOUR blog, and you can opine any way you want.

    Comment by Kemp — March 31, 2008 @ 11:40 am

  34. Aside from the fact that the gift may have practical applications, we are honored and humbled to have this elder gentleman, who as a craftsman, can only think of YOU as the deserving recipient of one of his creations. It shows that YOU have touched his life in a very special way and he is letting you know it in his very special way. That is the point.

    Comment by Grandmother — March 31, 2008 @ 9:35 pm

  35. You see, Kat’s comments are the type you *should* approve. Anyone offering to share their stupidity so willingly ought to be obliged.

    Why? Because then your regulars and lurkers have the opportunity to rise up (or de-lurk) and take her apart limb from limb… figuratively, of course.

    Chances at glory don’t come often; grab’em while you can ;)
    Kat: you seem to play nice on MetroDad’s site. Did you lose your sense of humor between there and here?

    Comment by Webaster @ Deanna's Corner — April 1, 2008 @ 12:55 pm

  36. I don’t really see the big deal. Kat obviously don’t approve of your views but who cares? Life would be very boring if everyone felt the same way. You know you’re doing a great job with the kids and not at all sexist.


    Comment by AdventureDad — April 1, 2008 @ 2:14 pm

  37. I had to come out of the woodwork too, to say… not all Kats are critical nimrods. At least I’m not. At least when you’re not my husband.

    I think its cool to go back to your “roots” as a kid blog. I have different blogs for different purposes - a family blog I keep entirely separate (no links so I can gripe!), but I end up blogging about my kid on my personal blog more than half the time. I just don’t have to try to be cute about it, cuz great-grandma isn’t reading there.

    Comment by Kat (not the mean one) — April 1, 2008 @ 7:55 pm

  38. It is both too bad and too sad that some people always look to find offense in others. I hope you will continue to blog and raise your children as you see fit, despite harsh critiques from those who don’t know a joke when they read it…

    Comment by Jane — April 2, 2008 @ 10:25 am

  39. So now that you have been commented to death over this crazy lady. haha. I had to say my peice. I have 3 daughters, and one son - as you know. Two of those daughters are identical twins - as you also know. And I get your sense of humour, quite similar to my own, and truly enjoy it, and I agree with most of things you say. Including protecting the virtue of our daughters. ;) So good for you for deleting her post. And then again deleting it. After all, as you said, it is your perogative.

    Comment by Jay — April 2, 2008 @ 11:03 am

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