Tell me again how technology ruins everything.

I can’t remember how long I’ve known Laura.  Probably close to 10 years now.  We met through our blogs and the first time we had lunch in person we stayed at the cafe so long we were still there at dinner.  This was when blogging was still somewhat new and most people would ask “What’s a glob?  Like a diary?  But…why?” and neither of us could really explain except to say that it was a nice way to document the weird thoughts and moments of our lives.  Her son, (Hurricane Harry) and Hailey were both only children, kids of bloggers and the same age so they’ve been friends as long as they can remember.

This is a game called "I'm balancing dirty rocks on my head". It was a favorite of theirs.
This is a game called “I’m balancing dirty rocks on my head”. It was a favorite of theirs.

They’ve shared holidays, vacations, and the hassle of mothers who have had to defend their decision to be bloggers over and over.

Neither of then threw up. It was a very successful day.
Neither of them threw up. It was a very successful day.

It’s not as unusual now but I remember a time when people thought that blogging about your kids would mess them up psychologically, or get them kidnapped, or that it was oversharing or – more often – that the technology that goes into blogging removes you from life so you can’t live the very thing you’re documenting.  And honestly, I can see those points.  I’ve seen others fall down those rabbit holes in terrible ways, but I’m lucky to have blogging friends who’ve always had my back to help me decide what should or shouldn’t be shared, and those are friends I never would have found without blogging.  My job, my life, my community, you guys, my best friends…all came from blogging.  And Hailey’s best friends are all the children of bloggers.  Maybe because of luck, or happenstance, or maybe because they’ve all grown up in the same strange world.

Screen Shot 2016-08-20 at 11.12.59 PM

Harry and Hailey were just a few years old when they became friends.

Tomorrow both of them start middle school and we spent this weekend running around parks and feeding ducks and playing Pokemon as they sniped gyms from each other and shared tips on how to throw curveballs and laughed at private jokes that were probably about Laura and me.  And as I looked at this photo of Hailey and Harry using technology to further bond and to laugh it reminded me of how it all started.

harry and hailey

So perhaps, in this small case study at least, technology isn’t so bad after all.

(Until they want to start their own blogs, of course.  Then we’ll have to lock to them in their closets with no internet.)


107 thoughts on “Tell me again how technology ruins everything.

Read comments below or add one.

  1. I agree. Through the internet, I have renewed contact with old high school friends – and that’s talking about 45 years ago. It’s nice to see that we are all old, and not just me. And through blogging, I have made new friends – many are bloggers too, and so it is nice to know that we are all crazy, and not just me.

  2. This is adorable. It’s amazing how transformative blogging can be…for the writers and the readers. I think it is one of those few places you can start doing something so innocently (sharing your thoughts and life) and it can turn into a career, while also inspiring others. <3

  3. If only we could all quit judging and start honoring each other’s paths! Oh, what a better place this world would be!

    Your path is YOURS and has brought so much joy, laughter, shared tears, and safe space to so many. That, my friend, is a life well lived.

  4. As long as the blogging is shared with family and friends it really can’t isolate. It’s a favorite game for us to find and share funny or cute posts around the table.

  5. If my children wanted to start a blog, I would be very very afraid, but what could yours tell that you already haven’t? 🙂

    Blogging has made me a LOT of online friends — some really amazing people. And I do gotta say most of them came from your site. You’ve been very generous to fellow bloggers and we appreciate you.

  6. Technology is a tool, and whether it’s good or bad is determined by how we use it. You and your blogging pals have been using it to connect and create communities that wouldn’t be there otherwise. A lot of us really appreciate what you’ve created!

  7. So much this! I have so many fabulous friends from blogging, and my children do too. It’s been a life line for me.

    There are people who still don’t understand the relationships bloggers have with other bloggers – let alone those who have never met in real life.

  8. I wouldn’t have had the privilege of watching Hailey bloom without technology. I love what you write, and I’m proud to be a member of the tribe. I also blog because I can. Thanks, technology!

  9. Absolutely! Technology is just a tool (not to be confused with some of the people who comment on blogs in hateful ways – they are a different kind of tool). I’ve met some terrifically lovely people through my blog and count myself so lucky to have an incredible community of fellow writers and mothers to rely on when I’m feeling particularly unstable.

  10. Coincidentally, I just posted about people who use social media inappropriately to slam their kids and parenting in general in a public forum. I agree with you–blogging will never mess up your kids if you put them in the context of a larger life picture, as part of an affectionate glimpse into your own story in order to connect with the world around you. That’s the upside of technology.

  11. That is so cool how your kids became friends. I’ve made lots of real friends through blogging and hope to meet more in real life some day!

  12. The internet helped me escape a rough home life, move across the country twice, and support myself. I’ve lived everywhere from a pomegranate farm to the capitol of the U.S., and had more adventures than I can possibly recount.
    It’s only as bad as the person using it. You’re good people.

    (“It’s only as bad as the person using it.” I love this. ~ Jenny)

  13. I agree! This is a sweet story.
    Also, if it wasn’t for technology, I wouldn’t have ever met some of my dear friends or my partner. 🙂

  14. Lovely. I agree, technology has brought us some wonderful things. My favorite part is when it brings people together in a positive way. Great blog.

  15. What halfa1000miles said. Speaking as an old, disabled guy, blogs are a big part of my day, and most of my favorite blogs I found right here in this comment section. I’m planning on starting my own blog soon, mostly because of the encouragement I got from those same bloggers, so in a very real sense, your community here is helping to grow the blogosphere, and helping a guy like me find some new purpose in a world that’s sometimes lacking in things like that. So I guess what I’m saying is thank you.
    Kids with blogs are probably OK, it’s the cats you have to worry about.

  16. I miss my favorite mommy blogger so much, I feel like I’ve lost grandchildren. She had her own research team in the comments. It was wonderful. I am so glad YOU are still there!

  17. You, your beautiful daughter, your close friend, her beautiful son- such a perfect circle. They seem totally over-qualified for middle school.

  18. No, blogging isn’t so bad. It’s how Geoff and I met. We started blogging at the behest of the 2 people who would later become our Maid of Honor and Best Man and those two, who met at our wedding, are now married.

    The Internet works in mysterious ways…

  19. I have long loved that you use your space to encourage and share other bloggers. You are one of the few who exemplifies the concept that sharing doesn’t mean you have less; sharing means you get more (unless we’re talking about ice cream — sharing ice cream never works out for the sharer).

    So anyway, thank you for that, and thank you to those who have clicked through from here to check out my words. I see you!

  20. Some of the folks I feel closest to I’ve met online, but haven’t met in person.

    Or, at least, they haven’t found me hiding in their shubbery yet.

  21. If it wasn’t for technology I’d be broke carless and very very sad. My phone and my computer allow me to make extra money to live. Also without technology I would never have found this blog and that would have been the worst thing ever.

  22. Here’s to globbing, blogging, and everything in between:). And also, Mario Bros. costume wearers holding hands with ballerinas in cowboots. That last part especially!

  23. My 13 year old is so superior to me with her tech knowledge. And I am thankful she pretty much only uses her powers for stuff like furthering the advancement of kitten videos. For now…

  24. I wish my parents were bloggers. Then that would mean they’d speak good English, and my learning curve would’ve been cut from 7 years to maybe 7 months. Anyway, it’s still been a great journey.

  25. I started blogging in 2006 and went into video stores (!) and beauty salons (!) and handed out my blog cards while shouting I HAVE A BLOG! No one knew what I was talking about but I’m used to that. ANYWAY the technology back then was not advanced. Now it’s hurtling us all forward and to be ignorant of it is to stay put. So it stands to reason kids of bloggers will be the first to love it and embrace its culture. I stopped blogging when I realized I had no children and thus nothing to talk about.

  26. I have met the most amazing and supportive people since I started blogging which in turn led me to Twitter where I am a part of a most wonderful group called TheBloggessTribe :). Each and every one of these people encourage and understand me. They lift me up when I think I cannot possible get through another day. For me, technology is a blessing.

  27. It all comes back to whether the kids are loved and cherished by their parents. Technology can be used to augment the relationship and shouldn’t be a substitute for parenting.

  28. Bloggers,you included,have kept me sane. Literally. A light that always shined when I needed it most. I am so fucking grateful for all of you!

  29. There are so many people that I’ve met from around the world that I wouldn’t be able to keep in touch with, were it not for how prevalent technology has become in our lives. So many wonderful people I’ve met and can only interact with online, due to distance or circumstances.

    Technology has helped to bring the world together, in my opinion.

  30. If it wasn’t for technology, blogging, and the Internet, my youngest would never have been born. You’ll never convince me it’s a bad thing.

  31. I have one of those husbands who doesn’t talk, at least not to me, unless it involves dinner menu/time. I would have died of pure loneliness without blogs these past few decades. And also eBay, where I sold all my fat clothes and bought snazzy smaller ones when I lost 80 lbs (on purpose, luckily.) I loved to follow infertility blogs and rejoice when those bloggers’ dreams came true, one way or another. How sad and lonely I would be without the interwebs!

  32. Technology means I can communicate with my one kid who’s in Denmark, and the other kid who’s just downstairs. All from the comfort of my couch. Technology is great. Everyone needs to chill.

  33. I have never seen you write anything that put Hailey in a bad light, so you’ve done it right. She seems to be growing up lovely, which is surprising considering her parentage (kidding!). Keep up the good work. I don’t know what we would do without you.

  34. I love this! It’s all in how you look at it, really. And I see technology or more specifically my blog that I have because of it as a very important outlet. Well, it’s really my only outlet. Due to my husband’s job we live in a small town with a lot of small minds. And due to circumstances beyond my control I am now a stay home mom of 3 kids-the youngest has autism. He is non verbal. So, yeah, thank God for technology. Without it I’d be stuck talking to all of the voices in my head all day…

  35. ..and also, with the WWW, we have access to all the wisdom of the ages! You know how we all had a grandpa (or somebody) who knew how to fix EVERYTHING? He’s on the web!. Like a few years ago, the hubs oiled some hinges on a door, after which the door refused to stand open. We tried liquid detergent to take off the oil, nothing worked. I put something like “door keeps swinging shut” in the search field and up came my answer! A carpenter’s website told me all we had to do was remove one hinge pin, put it in a vise and then take a hammer and put just the slightest bit of a bend on the pin. Replace pin in hinge and voila! Door stayed at any angle we put it! God bless old carpenters and the WWW. (I think that’s a Johnny Cash song)

  36. This is so true and so sweet. Beautiful kids. I have one question- Who is the bronze guy in the last photo???

  37. You know, there is always a price. Is there a price we pay for technology? I mean besides our verizon bills…yes, of course. But the price is worth it. I will never be the person bemoaning Pokemon Go or looking at your phone on the bus or in a restaurant. This is what our life is now. If you’re texting and driving, though, you’re a dick.

  38. I love this… uplifting. Technology, in this case online communication may be used to provide a positive or negative experience to those involved. I have experienced both deep pain from it’s misuse but also great joy. For example, just last week I was able to meet for the first time a gal whom I had communicated with for 8 years on the internet. It was a profound experience…to meet my “sister” in every way except a blood tie. When used with good intentions technology has been a blessing!

  39. Ya, it might not be so great when your kids start blogging and sharing stuff about you that you don’t necessarily want everyone reading. Actually I’d be fine with that cause it would mean my kids know how to tell a good story and I’d be proud of them for it.

  40. My amazing daughter in law had a blog. It was during a time I felt painfully held at arm’s-length. I lurked for just ages before I ever made a (timid, tentative, treading oh-so-lightly) comment. Even though small, that felt like a safe connection.

    More than I can ever say, I appreciated the insight and the connection. I don’t know if it brought us closer, but it did give me hope that it might happen.

  41. Blogs to me are like windows, letters, and chats over a cup of tea. They bring sunshine, laughter, and sometimes friends if we’re lucky. I try to choose my friends wisely – and the same for blogs. The best, though, is technology of all types that keep these friends and family close over distance. It is so much easier to do this nomadic lifestyle now then it was before when you just dropped off the face of the earth for a year or two.

  42. So, so sweet! I made the decision not to blog about my older children when I started mine 5 years ago because I didn’t want to embarrass them. Their little brother was fairly new to the planet, and as such, he was at the age of implied consent. Now he is seven, and I can’t blog about him as much anymore, so I have started collecting cats and houseplants. The plants haven’t done anything of note yet, but they’re still pretty new.

    What started all this? Oh, yeah. I remember. TECHNOLOGY ROCKS!

  43. Some of my closest friends are the invisible ones I’ve made online – some before my daughter, who moved into college today, was born.

    I love the interwebz. It gives me life.

  44. Many of my friends, including my best friend, were met thru the internet…some thru eBay, some thru twitter, a lot of connecting/reconnecting thru Facebook & some (kindred souls & likeminded friends) thru your blog. So Thank You for not giving in to the naysayers! My life is so much better with you all in it!

  45. They’re so adorable and wow how times fly and it’s true what you say it would be nice to live in a better world where people will not judge or be in the wrong mindset

  46. Aw, they have grown so much. I love how they have been good friends all these years (and hopefully more to come).

    Posting anything on the Internet can result in backslash. No matter what your opinion is or what you are posting, there will always be someone complaining about it. It is really good that you guys have a sort of “blogger support system.” It’s always good to be able to have each other’s backs, especially when going through a tough time or dealing with rude comments.

    Anyways, I love-hate the Internet. I still find myself being fascinated over the fact that I can talk to people (some of whom I have become good friends with) from all over the world. And I like how blogs allow people to express themselves. That is why I plan to start my own little blog on my birthday in a few days – kind of as a “To me, From me” gift.

    Haha, I am sure that when it comes time for Hailey to ask about having her own blog, you will teach her all about Internet safety or something.

  47. How wonderful to be surrounded but such wonderful people. Technology is supposed to bring us together. However, most of the time it pulls us apart.

  48. Awwwwww, this is the sweetest thing! Technology is like any other tool. If you use it wisely, it’s fantastic…but if you let the tool use you, not so much.

  49. Who said technology ruins everything? In my experience it’s middle school that ruins everything although I think Hailey and Harry are better prepared than I was.
    And it does get better.

  50. This is great. I think the old adage that “too much of anything is bad for you” rings true here. Looks like you have managed to keep it well balanced. Those pictures are outstanding.

    I’ve lurked on blogs for years and have just recently screwed up enough courage to try my hand at blogging, inspired by other bloggers like yourself and several others whom I mostly discovered through them commenting on your blog. Some of my family and friends give me the “I don’t get it” statement when they find I’ve started blogging. When I tell them I’m doing it for me, just to write down some of the weird things rolling around in my noggin, they screw up their faces and dismiss it. But I’m happy to say I’ve had some support from the blogging community and I’ll keep plugging along.

  51. As an educator and parent, technology is one big-ass can of mixed blessing wormies. When I try to wrap my mind around it, well, I’ll go ahead and say it: eff me! In the classroom, our very special school has one-to-one iPads for each kid (don’t ask me who’s dating the Apple rep), our students are getting incredibly good at technology-based learning (read: avoiding work and kicking ass at Madden). As the parent of a one-year-old, tech isn’t all bad right now, but I’m freaked the eff out about ever allowing him to have a computer in his room or even a smart phone that he doesn’t pay for. Meh, I suppose it’s time to embrace it, because… you know… the neo-luddites will never have their way.

    I will say this, in the coming robot wars, even though our defeat is inevitable, I’m totally casting my lot in with the organic creatures and pledge my life to dismantling the Kill-Botz.

  52. They’re so darn big!! And I cannot wait to have the kind of blogger friends that you do. I haven’t been blogging for even a year yet, but I can feel the relationships building and developing. I want those friendships!

  53. It’s been a VERY LONG TIME since I’ve read your blog (health issues, since resolved), and I have you at the top of my browser, and I just read several of your posts and wanted to say YES! I’d forgotten how much fun your blog is, and how you were so very good at making me laugh. This is all to say just thank you. You’re a cherished part of my day now, and I plan to log on whenever life is too grim.

  54. Since this is about daughters and friends – Thank you for your blog and Furiously Happy! It was too hard to keep reading it aloud to my daughter, so I bought her another copy before she went off to college. She struggles with anxiety, and she has friends with other disorders. She hasn’t put it down, and she’s telling her friends, too. Her dad hates that she’s on meds and doesn’t “get it”, to the point he won’t pick up her prescriptions. The first chapter I had her read was “I’m not psychotic”… I got the greatest acknowledgment from her. She said that thanks to Furiously Happy she feels I have a better understanding of her. I think I always understood, but your book enhanced it.

    Thank you for lending your voice to young people who struggle with mental illness. It’s an eye opener for them to see that they are not alone in their fight, and that at least one other person understands at least part of it.

  55. Its so great that you have shown her the true meaning of friendship and how it can outlast anything

  56. This is just so lovely and true. The internet helped me find my people when I was a socially awkward nerd teenager in a small town. Keep in mind that I’m 35 now, so so this was EARLY internet. That connection to people literally around the world got me through until I made it to college and my world expanded and showed me my place in it.

    I’m still in touch with some of those people today. In fact, a few years ago I spent one of my favorite days ever running around all four Disney World parks with an Australian who I had known since I was 14 but never met until that day. The internet gave me that day.

  57. aww how great to grow up with such a good friend! (and to have such a good mama friend, I didnt know those were real things!)

  58. This really opened my eyes to the journey blogging has taken. It was funny to me to hear there was a time when blogging about kids was “going to get them kidnapped.” The Internet absolutely has ways of bringing people together, your family, your friend and her son for example. In my life, I have remained close with so many friends that I wouldn’t have otherwise if it weren’t for Facebook. Going away to college leaves very limited time frames to catch up with high school friends in person. I enjoyed your phrasing when speaking of technology. You referred to technology as a way “to further bond and laugh” which opened my eyes to the uses of technology already present in my life, yet unbeknownst to me. I am about to start a blog and I couldn’t imagine starting one in a time where technology wasn’t viewed as such a positive (by most) as it is today. Technology is indeed no so bad after all.

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