Friday, July 20, 2012

Haters Gonna Hate

In my six years as a blogger, I've rarely had negative comments.  My readers, you, have been kind and thoughtful, and I appreciate just about every comment that someone takes the time to leave.  There are moments, though, when I receive nasty comments, and sometimes those ruin a day.

I read every comment I receive, no matter how old the post is or how cruel the sentiment might be.  The majority of the comments get posted right away, and I do my best to respond to them quickly if the reader had a question.  The few comments I do reject are usually because they are "confidential" responses from people who are responding "for my eyes only" (feel free to do that, by the way).  The really mean comments just get deleted.  I try not to take them to heart, don't feel bad about not posting them, and learn to let them go.

I received one such nasty comment recently and opted to not post it.  The reader "read" my blog page about my faith.  He or she then commented anonymously informing me that my faith was a sham brought about nothing other than my imagination and that my faith is akin to harboring imaginary friends.

Now I'm pretty comfortable with the notion that there are people in the world that don't believe the same thing I do.  Lots of people disagree what what I believe--and that's just fine.  I think other religions and ways of believing are deserving of respect, and I have a lot of fun learning about them.  However, opening up my own story was a very difficult thing to do online.  It's scary to put myself out there for the world to read.  Being part of this large Catholic and Christian community is a bit terrifying, but it's also necessary.  Keeping that dialogue open and creating a place where people can share ideas or discuss topics is important to me.

So imagine my delight when I received a comment that was neither respectful nor constructive.  Yeah.  Big ol' turd sandwich right on my faith page.  I reread that page wondering what set Anonymous off, but I just couldn't find the lecture or theology lesson he or she got stuck on.  I don't try to "win hearts and minds" or bash anyone else's faith.  I don't state that my way is the only way.  In fact, aside from inviting conversation, I couldn't find anything on my faith page that had anything to do with anything other than me! (Weird, a blog all about me is actually about me?! Go figure.)

I'm not going to defend my faith to Anonymous.  It's very clear to me that Anonymous is not interested in listening, let alone having an actual conversation.  I can't prove God exists anymore than Anonymous can try to prove God doesn't exist.  Receiving nasty comments is no fun, but unfortunately I can't stop them.  Haters are going to hate.  That doesn't mean I have to hate in return.

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