On nasty, anonymous commenters...

{image via weheartit}

What could I possibly say about this topic that hasn't been said a million times? It's funny because a year or two ago, when I received my first mean anonymous comment on this site, all of my blog friends said something along the lines of "congratulations, welcome to the club!" Getting anonymous comments are (unfortunately) par for the course. If you get a few hundred, or a few thousand visitors everyday you can be assured that there is a large handful of those people amidst that big number who probably can't stand you yet still come by to read what you write! It sounds odd, but it's so true. It goes back to number five on my "things I learned in my 20s part one" (click here to read). The point I made there is that not everyone will like you (and that's okay)! Mean comments don't happen very often on this blog, but they do every once and awhile. I don't care about whatever it is they decide to say, but the fact that someone is out there, so worked up and ANGRY...taking so much of their energy to write something nasty...well, that kind of freaks me out. Luckily I'm at a point now where it doesn't get to me. We're all human though, and if you're not in the right mindset, words can definitely hurt even if they aren't true statements- the anger alone can be the upsetting part. Just this week I had an anonymous commenter come and leave a comment, which was ironic because just the day before my friend had gotten a similar, horrible comment on her blog that we had discussed for a bit. I chose to delete the comment and just quickly respond on the post, telling the person not to come back. I'm sure they're still reading, and that's okay (oh heeey rude anon!), but maybe that person has thought a bit about how silly and sad they really sounded, although that's probably a stretch. Opinions are welcome- yes, even negative ones about me- and I of course support everyone's right to say and feel how they want, but when they turn nasty it's just wrong. So with all of this in mind, I just wanted to share a couple of things that have helped me when I've received rude comments.
  • Remember that you are dealing with a very sad person behind that anonymous screen. For someone to come willingly to your space on the internet, read what you have to say, and then take the time to leave a rude comment, really takes a lot of negative energy. In the past few years I've gotten away from even reacting to these people and instead it's turned into feeling so, so sad for them. What an unhappy life to want to bring others down, and try and hurt them!
  • The happier you are, the more "haters" you will receive. My blog is generally pretty upbeat, I talk about happy topics, use a lot of exclamation points from time to time, post quotes that inspire me, and I make no apologies about leading a life full of love that I am incredibly thankful for. I can imagine this would really annoy some people. You have to remind yourself though that these commenters have come willingly to your blog. Remember that. They have sought you out. Don't let someone else make you feel bad about putting yourself out there, or being happy, just because they're not.
  • Also, remember that the internet is just that- the internet. Don't get too wrapped up in what anyone thinks, be it good OR bad. Blogging is fun, but it should be something that enhances your life, not something that becomes your life. I personally like to take a "delete and ignore" stance on anonymous comments- I responded a bit to the person the other day, which I probably shouldn't have, but I went ahead and deleted their rude comment because I didn't want the entire thread to turn into people "defending" me unnecessarily and defeating the whole purpose of what should have been a positive post. Handle the comments however you'd like, but for me, not even allowing them to exist works well. It can be hard not to want to defend yourself, but by doing that you totally are validating the effect and importance of the nasty words. I used to feel like I had to write back to anything rude or unkind. "Fake?! You want to call me fake? How dare you! blah blah blah!" What an epic waste of energy. Instead, just move on.
  • And don't forget, the rude person often has some reason for not liking you, your blog, their perception of you, whatever, that has less to do about you, and a LOT more to do about them. That phrase "haters gonna hate" fits pretty perfectly into this- no matter what you do, you can't please everyone, so just worry about your own happiness and wish the best for anyone who decides to try and bring you down to their negative level.
Thanks for reading this little list- so much love and happy blogging! :]