When I hit follow, I mean it.

Many WordPress users follow blogs simply to get a follow back. To boost their numbers. I understand this. Because it happens to me so infrequently, getting a follower is like a small hit of crack. A rush.

Topping a milestone, 100, 200, etc, is something more. But I don’t really know what because it’s only happened to me once. A few months ago, I bypassed one hundred followers. And I’m now one away from two hundred.

I won’t trade for follows. I don’t want my reader filled with unreadable content. For the most part, I don’t want to read about travel or makeup or restaurants in a city I’m not planning to visit. I don’t want to read about books I’ll never read. Or movies I’m not going to watch.

I want to read about people. I want to read about goals, dreams, fears, foibles and achievements. I want to read about you. I want to read about real people blossoming and withering. Growing and shriveling. Experiencing life… and death.

I want to read dissent, opinion and point of view. But I don’t want to read about hate. Hate is for Facebook.

Today I unfollowed my first blog. A post offended me. It left me feeling dirty, stained, and wondering why—why would I voluntarily read something that is counter to my beliefs. It didn’t leave me feeling educated. It wasn’t challenging, just mean.

I’m not afraid of ugly. Many of the poets I follow paint a picture of the world that is black and red. Not beautiful, but a slap in the face. Screaming wake up. In their posts there is no hate, just truth.

Hate is for Facebook.

354 thoughts on “Follow

  1. Pingback: “I Want to Read about People”: On Why We Follow Blogs — Discover – Site Title

  2. I agree – I have only a handful of followers and it does not bother me in the slightest as I simply write stories about me, my life, my memories and my opinions. My writing has become a fascinating experience for me and I find the more I write, the more I remember. Like you, I am very selective about who I follow as I too prefer to discover new cities, new food, new cultures, new traditions when I travel and don’t like to be influenced by what other people like or enjoy. I do not need to see another recipe or a photo of food.
    As for hate – it is a word I would like to completely remove from our language. I want to think, write, read as an individual not by popular demand and I strive to always be kind and caring to all life.

    Liked by 8 people

  3. I’m new to the blogging world and believe I’m up to 9 followers lol and this is the first time I make a comment. It’s hard to find time to post in my blog but always get motivated when I get a new follower. I truly enjoy reading people’s
    Blogs and I get inspired by doing so. I believe that blogging is a form of informative art. It’s self expression about things that are important to you personally and it’s what you want to show others. I don’t know which blogger you are all referring to and have not yet read a post that I didn’t like-but I’m sure I’ll come across one at some point. I did however, like the Facebook comment in this original post . Facebook has become the National Enquirer of social media. If people are looking for attention of sorts then then that’s the place to do it. As far as I’m concerned, keep up the great blogging everyone!!!!

    Liked by 4 people

  4. I agree 100%. I’ve gotten more followers and views since I switched my leadership blog over to a format featuring posts that are basically about me and my daily struggles/successes within leadership, weight loss, fatherhood, marriage, etc.. I try to include lessons within each post. I really started my blog as therapy. In the beginning, I used to follow everyone that followed me, you know, just hit the button. I’d feel guilty a bit if I didn’t. Then I started reading and unfollowing blogs I wasn’t interested in. I lost some followers but that’s ok. I’m ok with not gaining a bunch of followers and becoming rich. 😄 Not only is my blog therapy, but it’s a legacy I’m leaving for my 4 young children. Someday, they will understand who I am and the choices I made while they were growing up. I’m very excited for that!

    Liked by 3 people

  5. This: “Because it happens to me so infrequently, getting a follower is like a small hit of crack. A rush.” is so true. Great reminder to follow or not follow. Sometimes I come close to being sucked into the tit-for-tat followers vortex.

    Liked by 2 people

  6. Pingback: Follow — The Other Stuff – #in control

  7. Thank you so much for this. When people ask me why I started blogging or what I write about, I can tell they expect to hear me say something like fitness, food, dieting, poetry, etc. But in all honesty I just want to write. I want to live and I express that through what I write. Social media has milked so many people into thinking they have to put SO MUCH THOUGHT into their posts that it’s not even real anymore. Awesome post and a reminder that was much needed.

    Liked by 3 people

  8. I started blogging again, after one year, because I felt the need to write my heart out. I am exploring around word press to find bloggers worth following, and I have discovered that there are a lot out there, but I am only following those whose posts I enjoy reading, those who reveals parts of their heart and soul. Of course I want to have more than 16 followers that I currently have, but I would like them to be people that can relate or at least feel and appreciate what I am writing.

    Liked by 2 people

  9. I’ll just get this out of the way… you had me at the word “foibles”. (One of my all-time favorite words)

    Totally agree regarding Facebook, filled with hatred and bad news. That’s why I left and have entered the world of blogging. I believe you may have to be my second follow!

    M x

    Liked by 1 person

  10. “Fear is for Facebook”. Ha. I knew there was a reason I left social media! When I started my blog I really thought my only readers would be a couple of people I harassed into reading it. It still amazes me I have over a hundred strangers that read and identified with something I said. Ok, I know some of those are just trying to sell me some “amazing new traffic” since “the ideas you outlined were so clear and relevant and I will be returning soon to hear more!” Really Spammer? My post on meeting Plumber Jim when my sewer ejector pump gave up was rife with “great ideas every one needs to hear”. At first it was like an endorphin rush. But somewhere along the line I reminded myself why I started, it was to write again on a regular basis, to do this thing that I love but gets lost in the mortgage paying day to day. I actually don’t know how many followers I have right now. Just that I really enjoying reading other people like you and conversing with the ones like you that recognize the joy in reading “about real people blossoming and withering. Growing and shriveling. Experiencing life… and death.” Even if its about a sewer.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Speaking of which… anything new coming up from you? Now that I’ve got a gazillion followers and the rush of that has worn off, I’m really just looking for friends like you to correspond with.


      • I had some mortgage paying stuff that got in the way, but just finished typing Part One of another Single Girl Home Owning saga. Part Two is where the meat is, but its all about the build up, eh? I’m hoping to get it up these evening after some magic finishing touches (i.e. filching royalty free images from the Interweb).


      • royalty free meaning open or stolen? I’m pretty bad about the stealing thing. I read a post recently by a blogger calling all of us photo thieves to the carpet. I’ve been better since then.


      • I try to stick with actually open, no attribution needed from places like Pixabay or Creative Commons if I’m not using my own photos. Otherwise, I try to credit the source. Even when I use those “no attribution needed” I try put the source site in as an alternate text in the very least.

        Liked by 1 person

  11. Pingback: Follow — The Other Stuff | Indy's Untamed Travels

  12. Love the post!
    I just started blogging myself but only follow a blog if I enjoy reading several of its posts and the topics are relevant for me. For example having been an expat for the past years I am interested in reading about the life of other expats and their adventures. In general stories and topics I can relate to.

    Liked by 1 person

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