Hi. Terrified to Meet You.

For those of you who missed what happened this week, “When Belief Becomes a Work” ricocheted around a small section of Twitter for a while, resulting in a gloss that I found more insightful than my own post.

Then WordPress editors picked “Truth Isn’t Relative, but You Are” to promote on their blog. As of writing this, I gained around 400 followers, received over 240 likes on that post alone, and am still publishing and responding to comments.

Notoriety isn’t what I expected it to be. It’s like having a private conversation with a few close friends and then suddenly realizing that everyone around you is listening in too — and then they start saying things to you.

The last time this happened, a bunch of fundie-haters came to crap on my blog, and I cried and wanted to quit writing. This time, the response is mostly positive, and I almost cried, and want to quit writing.

I am such a wimp. There. I said it.

Now that this blog feels like a totally different writing platform (as in, the floodgates have opened to the best and the worst of the internet), a totally different community (as in, not the handful of people who have been following my journey since I was a fundamentalist, stay-at-home daughter teenager), I want to introduce myself.

Hi, I’m Bailey. I am probably not who you think I am, and I probably don’t believe what you think I do, and I probably am not as passionate or as open-minded as you are on certain subjects, so please don’t hate me. I am transitioning between labels, so if you’re in-between and lost, or if you ever were in-between and lost, we might learn to like each other.

This blog is for conversation. It’s for people, whether they agree with me or not, sharing their views with the hopes of understanding where I am coming from, where others are coming from, and where they themselves are coming from. If you’re interested in that kind of thing, welcome.

If you’re not, you will cause me headaches and anxiety by forcing me to kick you off and spend my weekend wondering if I’m a narrow-minded jerk. Don’t do that to a people-pleaser. Go back to the creepy parts of the internet. Please.

Now I will go back to almost crying. Nice to meet you.

P.S. Here are my community guidelines.

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23 thoughts on “Hi. Terrified to Meet You.

  1. seedingthoughts

    Frankly, i just started blogging and i have not more than 12 followers right now. I am not even sure if my blogs are appease others or not but one thing that I learnt is that people will always have opinions of you – good or bad – but you need to always be sure of yourself and your beliefs.
    You are doing really great Bailey. Keep it up. Don’t let others come in your way girl. :)

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Happy soul

    Hello Bailey!its ok if u feel bad when someone tries to hurt u intentionally or not.. U feel bad because u have heart and feelings.its good to have feelings. Those tries to put down others and feels great about it they need to learn more about respect and all. But this is not ok if someone say bad about u bullly u hurt u . you are for yourself ..make yourself stronger then ever and believe in urself …ignore whole world ..your inner peace is important then anything else :) keep smiling!

    Like

  3. Adele

    Congratulations on your next step on becoming an . . . official? professional? Famous? blogger!
    I would be terrified to suddenly have 400 followers reading my words too! I suggest you try to put them out of your mind and keep doing what you do because you are doing great. And in more totally useless advice that probably cannot be followed – try not to worry if you end up blocking someone. This is still your blog and you have the final say in what happens here. I know you would never block someone just for disagreeing with you and it is not narrow-minded to protect yourself from abuse and negativity.

    Adele

    Like

    • Bailey Steger

      Adele! You are always the voice of reason in these things. After being told multiple times by drive-by angry commenters that I’m only interested in praise and agreement, it’s good to hear from a long-timer that you don’t think I’d block someone for merely disagreeing.

      Like

  4. Rightingnow.com

    No reason to be terrified to meet me! I’m in life training too and I still feel like a freshman! (I’m 46) It’s refreshing to read genuine writing from someone who knows she doesn’t have all the answers. By the way, I ABSOLUTEly loved your post about absolute truth. ;)

    Like

  5. Jasmine Ruigrok

    Hey girl, you sound like you need a hug, so make sure you go find yourself a good one from someone awesome.

    Bailey, this blog is for YOU. Sometimes us writers need an open place to just stand up and speak it out, even if all we’re really doing is preaching to ourselves. Remember that though kind readers are wonderful, you’re doing this to help Bailey most. Which means all the rude commenters really have no say, regardless of their words. It’s Bailey who brought the new readers here, and she hasn’t changed. Keep exploring! Keep discovering! Keep questioning things and being uncertain and chasing answers. Keep being the reason people want to hear your words. You aren’t responsible for other people’s perspective of you.

    Besides, if you must blog for other reasons? Remember your old readers. They’re still with you, and they love you! You’re doing well, girl. Don’t let a bunch of whiny internet people looking for a fight get you down. Some people are impossible to please.

    Like

    • Bailey Steger

      This comment is gold. Thank you thank you thank you. If I ever get a printer hooked up, I will print it and stare at when I get discouraged. I will also refer to it as authoritative when kicking people off: “So sorry, mean internet person, but Jasmine said I should.” ;)

      Like

  6. Bethany C

    Yay :) I’m really glad that your words are going to be able to reach more people. Sometime this fall I started to think, ‘You know, I think Bailey is going to be one of the next really good well-known writers who shares thoughtful, heartfelt insights about faith and morality’ and it’s exciting to see that starting to happen. I really think your perspective is so valuable and unique yet gives voice to what a lot of people are thinking.

    I think one of the difficulties that comes with getting a bigger readership and establishing a name for yourself is that it’s possible to eventually feel stuck in your ‘brand’. I’m sure you experienced that when you left the stay-at-home-daughter movement, and then fundamentalism. We experience it when we have a hard time telling an old friend something about how we are growing, while we might happily tell a new friend. Others’ expectations of us can keep our growth tamped down into a respectable shape. I guess I hope that you can continue to feel that you can grow into your most true self, wherever that takes you. I look forward to following whatever part of that journey you share with us :)

    Like

  7. ChrisW

    I both desire and dread wider readership for these reasons. There is being known of and there is being known. Two different things.

    I *hope* that the validation that you have something to say and that you are not alone will eclipse the downsides.

    Like

  8. mijnschrijvingen

    Hi Bailey I also have find you through the promoted blog by WordPress. That blog I like very much because you wrote things that I see also. I am writing in flemish (Belgium). For me English is not so difficult. I hope you can understand me. Keep on going, I also have had the same troubles and after that more readers. Caroline

    Like

  9. Elizabeth

    Wow! Congratulations :) I second everything the eloquent Jasmine said, it’s such a fun and amxiety-provoking experience, I’ll be praying for you!

    Like

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