“H” is for Honesty

Do you ever feel like your interactions online are like a dinner party, where you need to watch what you say and how you say it in order to make a good impression?

*No, dressing your poodle up as Legolas isn't weird at all...*
No, dressing your poodle up as Legolas isn’t weird at all…

say what you wanna say
and let the words fall out
Honestly, I wanna see you be brave.
~”Brave” by Sara Bareilles


Lately, I’ve been feeling like the things that I say keep getting misunderstood. I’d like to think that it’s not intentional, that I’m just being overly sensitive; and that is true to an extent.

I can be clumsy; does that make me stupid? huh? Does it?! (no, it makes you a klutz. get over yourself)
I can be clumsy, does that make me stupid? huh, does it?! no, it makes you a klutz. get over yourself

*I* need to own this. *I* need to stop tip-toeing around the issues because “I’m new here and I don’t want to cause problems.

*what if they're sleeping? maybe I should knock softer*
what if they’re sleeping? maybe I should knock softer

When I do confront and it all goes to Hell,


It’s my own expectations that are my biggest downfall. My approach isn’t automatically the rule.

*that was funny. Laugh!*
that was funny. laugh!

What are these unwritten rules that keep tripping me up? Well, as I understand them, they seem to be:

be nice
I can do that *smiles*

be respectful to your fellow fans
again, no problem!


be respectful of Richard
this one can be subjective, so I’ll just invest in some blinders

Richard should probably get some too
Richard should probably get some too.

I can respectfully criticize Richard, as long as I tack on a ‘whatever makes him happy‘ disclaimer
as Richard Armitage fans, isn’t that a given, that we want him to be happy?

unless it makes you happy *winks*
unless it makes you happy *winks*

I can state my opinions, as long as I include a ‘in my opinion‘ or ‘everyone has a right to their own opinion.
doesn’t the *I think* or *I feel* already cover that?


don’t accidentally accuse anyone of, well, anything. or imply that they are doing something wrong.
this is getting complicated (the doing it wrong issue can actually be one of my own hot-buttons; I’ve never claimed that I’m not a hypocrite)



So, in summary: I should just approach every conversation as if it has the potential to get me sued,

Richard! that is not PC! *tsk*
Richard! that is not PC! *tsk*

cover my ass, and just generally kiss ass

it's better to say arse; I've not figured out why, yet.
it’s better to say arse; I’ve not figured out why, yet.

and I should be fine!



I’ve not spent a lot of time on blogs before, most of my interactions in other fandoms have taken place on forums.

*she doesn't know our ways; I'll vouch for her this time*
she doesn’t know our ways; I’ll vouch for her this time

I love the interactions I’ve had with all of you on this blog

you'rrre great!
you’rrre great!

but when I roam abroad, I should bring along some protection

get your mind out of the gutter, Richard!
get your mind out of the gutter, Richard!

to build me up a bit first. the lyrics to this Sara Bareilles song can help in that regard, give it a listen:


Have you ever felt this way too? What kinds of things are holding you back, either in fandom or in real life?

Swearing, perhaps?

-fucking door!-
fucking door!
-you, God damned...-
you, God damned…
-bloody bastard!!-
bloody bastard!!

or maybe that’s just me?

Show me how big your brave is

68 thoughts on ““H” is for Honesty

    1. it’s the unexpected arguments that throw me for a loop. can’t I just say I like Vanilla ice-cream? I was not prepared to write a dissertation on the subject! *laughs*


    2. Staying out of unfriendly places can only help if other folks don’t start taking the fights to neutral ground, or to places which normally *are* friendly, or ‘policing’ in places which are not either public forums or their own blogs. It’s disconcerting to be attacked for no reason you can determine in places where you thought you would be safe from attack.


        1. That’s nice. ๐Ÿ˜
          However I think you misunderstand my use of the term ‘policing’ and definitely the phrase ‘places where you thought you would be safe from attack’.


  1. F*ck! I wanna dance with them! ๐Ÿ˜€ …in the meantime I’m dancing and singing in my living room ๐Ÿ˜‰
    ( Oh, how my daughter hates it!)


  2. Hi, I hate this post ๐Ÿ˜›
    Keeping my sarcasm tamed in real life is hard, you can’t imagine how dificult is to do it on Internet and writing on a different language. — It’s a really diplomatic exercise. I have to think twice before writing (editing is the key).
    As a matter of fact, I just try stay away from the drama of any fandom.


    1. I find many things funny that aren’t really supposed to be. sarcasm is a tricky thing if you aren’t conversing with people who know you and your sense of humor well, because they can’t see your body language. I talk a lot with my hands and the expressions on my face, which does not come through with black and white text! I really like conversing online because you can do away with all of the “small talk” and get right to the meat of the conversation, but that also means that people are more invested in the subject matter too; emotions often times run high.


      1. too much passion + taking things too seriously = drama… I don’t like to be involved on it, although I admit that I love read the discussions on forums and blogs — sometimes the only thing left is laugh about all the misunderstandings and assumptions that people make.


        1. I’ve always tried to avoid drama in the past but I like trying to connect with other fans, which you have to have conversations to do ๐Ÿ˜› but I’ll just be strolling along, decide to add to the conversation, and BAM!! I’ve stepped into a big old pile of drama without even realizing it. then I try to clarify what I meant or suggest that there is more than one side to something and suddenly I’m defending myself and wondering “how did I get here?” *scratches head in confusion* I don’t necessarily like being the aloof one, like I am in real life, but sometimes I’d rather be lonely than deal with that all of the time.


  3. This is why I don’t comment as much on blogs anymore, and when I do, I have to write and rewrite things so as not to offend anyone – blog owner or commenters – because cod only knows we offend by being nice, not nice, honest, dishonest or simply just breathing on someone else’s blog. It actually takes a lot of hard work on my part to be sarcastic and be on the defensive, to actually have a defense ready for a simple comment that is mine and not meant to offend – but because I’ve breathed on someone’s blog, I run the risk of offending anyway.

    There are suddenly rules on commenting appropriately, sometimes there are rules saying there are no rules on visiting fan blogs and being a proper fangirl/fanboy. There are unspoken rules that only blog owners know of and I’m tired of consulting my crystal ball to see what they are, to pick my words and be neutral.

    These days, liking a post is the safest thing that I can do. Because cod only knows I actually speak my mind and offend someone.


    1. yes! yes! to everything you just said! it’s almost like I have to have a “cheat sheet” of what words/subjects to avoid; sucks the fun right out of it. sometimes it’s unintentional or unavoidable, and I realize that, but It makes me feel like something is wrong with me: why am I the only one saying “chill the fuck out” all of the time? is this not a good fit for me? I don’t know. I’ll just stay “close to home” where people seem to understand me better and leave the exploring to those who have the disposition for it (yes, I broke down and swore b/c it’s my blog and I just felt like it! *laughs*)


      1. Nothing is wrong with you. You don’t set out to intentionally hurt others or demean them or make them feel less than you. But people feel it anyway because it’s about them. And there’s nothing you can do about it. That’s what a fandom is, at the end of the day. It’s not about the subject about about us. And after everything is said and done, it’s about how we treat others that make up the fandom that matter.


        1. that sounds an awful lot like “real life” to me..damn it! I thought I was escaping! I’m with “me” enough already, I want it to be all about Richard ๐Ÿ™‚


          1. True, but our relationship with him is parasocial or one way. There’s more of us in the playground and he’s not even in it LOL

            So in the end we do have to play nice with one another. It’s confusing as heck, since we’re all different, and some are going to be more vocal than others, more forceful or outgoing, shy or reserved, but even with all our differences, and boy, are there ever, let’s hope we can manage it anyway ๐Ÿ™‚


  4. As someone who instituted a comments policy recently — I did it because I’d have had to stop blogging otherwise.

    In terms of saying, “chill the fuck out,” to me, that’s a variant of “you’re doing it wrong,” which is the quickest way to kill anyone’s enjoyment of something. How would you feel if people appeared on your blog regularly to tell you to be more serious?


    1. I would say “look around, I think you’re in the wrong place ” ๐Ÿ˜€

      *to you* it equates to “you’re doing it wrong”, but to me it means “settle down and take a breath, smell the roses for a bit”. but even if I did straight up say “you’re doing it wrong” what authority do I have over you that even makes it matter? none.


      1. OK, then. If you are angry when others say that to you, why would you say it to others? I’m genuinely curious. Why is it okay for you to say it on your blog, but it’s not okay for me to say it on mine?


        1. who said I was angry? we’re discussing the “your doing it wrong” phrase, correct? in the body of my post I admitted that I am a hypocrite when it comes to that phrase, sometimes it bothers me and sometimes it doesn’t; depends on the context. I didn’t say it wasn’t okay for anyone to say it to me, I implied that it’s frustrating when something I’ve said is misunderstood and turned into “you’re doing it wrong”. which has been aptly illustrated here…


      2. In other words, if the “what authority” question applies to me, why doesn’t it apply to you? Why don’t you just shake if off if people say something to you that makes you frustrated? Are you the only one who’s allowed to say that and the only one who’s allowed to have her feelings be hurt by these things? Because they are just as hurtful when you say them to people as they to you when you hear them (if what this post suggests is true).


        1. I know that in the grand scheme of things that it doesn’t matter whether another fan thinks I’m doing it wrong or not, which is why I shake things off quite often. this phrase seems to be a trigger for you, something that just gets under your skin. I’d suggest that maybe you should examine why that is, instead of becoming argumentative every time you *think* someone is accusing you of it.


          1. Responsibility goes both ways and that’s why I don’t usually respond to baiting any more. Everyone has to take responsibility for what s/he says. That includes you, too. If you don’t want pushback, I think you know what you have to do.


          2. I never said I didn’t want push-back, I always encourage discussion. this was not “baiting” to get you to come over here and have your own personal mini-meltdown. I seriously hope that the way you have conducted yourself here today is the catalyst for some kind of break-through for you, then it will have been worth it.


      3. Of course, perhaps your post was just a big joke. In which case, I do apologize sincerely for misunderstanding you. [emoticon for sincerity]


        1. somehow I don’t believe that you are sincere…and just to be clear, that does not mean you’re doing ‘sincerity’ wrong, it just means that I don’t believe you.


          1. That’s pretty much how I feel when you write a variant of “you’re doing it wrong” and then write ~laugh after it or put an emoticon. Now you know how it feels.


  5. I saw this post and I thought, I should leave this alone. She honestly does not get why she irritates me (anyway) although I have tried to explain several times, I think maybe three times this year, and I should just leave it alone. She’ll stay away in future and maybe that’s for the best.

    Wouldn’t you be happier now if I had left it alone?


    1. I did not say “Servetus does all of these things and it drives me crazy” did I? I’m pretty sure my post was worded in general terms. you and I seem to butt heads quite often over a variety of subjects. you have never explained why exactly I irritate you, or even said that I do. my interactions with you have been about specific subjects, never how we feel about each other. but if it’s bothering you so much, then by all means, tell me. I did not realize you were trying to chase me away from your blog and by having conversations with you. I will continue to visit the places that have interesting RA news *shrugs* sorry to thwart your plan.


  6. I feel this. All. The. Time. It is exhausting at best, and discouraging at worst. People sometimes have difficulty differentiating between an opinion stated and one said as fact, so I am constantly reviewing and re-editing to be sure my language is clear when it is my opinion that is being said…and even then there is no assurance that there won’t be consequences. Again, exhausting. The social network bloggosphere can be a bit of an trepidatious eggshell trek. In a perfect world it would be nice to just be able to say it, removing all filters and speaking freely. We certainly all have the freedom to do that, but only IF we are willing to accept the consequences. I would much rather spend my time attempting to write creatively on my Blogs/Social Posts then defending my opinion ad nauseam in a comment on someone else’s Blog. So, thank you for bringing this up.


    1. I’ve moderated on a fan-forum for another fandom and I’ve helped other posters, bloggers, fanfiction writers, deal with less-than-polite run-ins that they have been involved in. I try to be the voice of reason but am by no means immune to fits of passion, I can get really nasty when provoked; I don’t like that person I become so I really try to avoid those types of discussions when at all possible. I stay away from the places that thrive on that kind of drama. but I can’t continually bite my tongue either, that is not who I am. I *think* I’ve conducted myself appropriately on other blogs, I hope I have.

      I want to talk about Richard, discuss his work, look at pretty pictures of him, and then have fun over here in my “safe place” ๐Ÿ™‚ the purpose of this post was to say “hey, this is what is going on with me. if it’s ever happened to you, you’re not alone. stay strong & listen to this song, it helps me” THAT was my purpose, most of you understood that. I hope it helped.


    2. I agree. It would be a great relief.
      However even in the real world we often cannot remove those filters, although people can hear the tone of voice, see our body language. It’s the cost of human interaction, I guess.
      Virtual interaction subtracts those added clues to meaning which are important to the speaker and listener both, and has the added peril of removing immediate consequences of our words. It’s not even any help that we can edit our comments sometimes, or read them afterwards.


      1. I don’t think we should just let it all hang out either, using respectful language and not forgetting our manners is a *good* thing. it’s a balance, and that balance is diff’t for each individual member depending on who they are and how they normally act in their everyday lives. it is important to judge the tone of any conversation and any speaker; if you’re on the same level, the same page, you will have a much smoother conversation. maybe I’m too friendly at times, thinking that I’ve conversed with the person enough for them to know “my ways” and I inadvertently offend them. misunderstandings happen, it is what it is. if we deal with those misunderstandings, address them in some way instead of letting them simmer, then we will have a more enriching friendship ๐Ÿ™‚


        1. Yeah, you offend me every day! ๐Ÿ˜‰ You cruel heartless beyotch. ๐Ÿ˜€

          Seriously, you are one of the nicest bloggers online, certainly in Armitage fandom.


          1. shh! don’t tell everyone what I’m really like in private!! “heartless beyotch” *laughs*

            I sincerely thank you for the nice compliment ๐Ÿ™‚


  7. this post was about *my* feelings, and encouraging others to share their stories if they’ve ever felt the same way, in real life or fandom. when asked to explain myself, I did. in no way did I bait anyone or tell anyone but myself that they were doing things wrong. it seems that I irritate a certain blogger so much that she felt it justifiable to try and twist around what I said in order to win an argument that I feel wasn’t even really *with* me (I’m still not sure what the actual argument was about)

    I understand how emotions can get high and how we may regret how we chose to handle them .I’ve been there done that *and* have the t-shirt! I think that maybe this was someone’s “throwing the chair out the window” moment, I’m sorry it had to take place here out in the open instead of in private. as I’ve always encouraged, anyone can feel free to contact me privately by using the contact form on the “about” page. whether that is to discuss a serious issue or just to chat, I welcome it. this is a prime example though of why you shouldn’t let things build up inside, say what you want to say, hopefully respectfully. I’m not going to lie and say I haven’t felt the tension, that is why I wrote the post after all; though it wasn’t directed at any one person or any one incident.

    as someone just recently said to me: people see what they want to see. I hope the majority of my readers see me for who I am, someone who likes to have a laugh now and then, someone who enjoys connecting with other fans through our shared admiration of Richard Armitage, someone who stands up for what she believes and takes ownership of her actions and her words, someone who does not wish ill will or encourage drama, someone who tries to stay objective. but you see what you want to see.


    1. I see you exactly as you portrayed yourself above. But, when I read your post, I thought your post was aimed at Me and Richard ( while I think one of the comments was aimed at me) and I think anyone following comments in “our” circle of blogs could see that, as we saw ( or read) some or all of the give and take between you two. Anyway, that’s what I thought when I read it, so not surprisingly, that’s what she thought.


      1. several members within our circle use the disclaimers regularly. it’s a pet-peeve of mine and so that’s why I made sure to mention it; that doesn’t mean I dislike those people or that they throw me into a tail-spin when I see others using them. maybe that’s how those members talk in real life too, never wanting to offend anyone. it seems redundant to me and I have a feeling that some of the usage comes from fear not habit. I want more for those members, I want them to know that it’s not necessary to precisely choose every word that you use; I want to hear what you have to say, it’s not important to me how polished you say it. the “you’re doing it wrong” is a particular issue with Servetus, but she’s not the only one who gets sensitive about the suggestion that she/or others are doing their “fanning” wrong. it was not directed at her and I did not purposely direct anything at you, Perry, either (I’m not sure which part of my post you thought might be about you specifically)

        I knew this post had the potential to ruffle some feathers but I am not going to censor what I want to say in order to please everyone else, that is the point of the post. we don’t have to be afraid, as long as we’re prepared for the fact that not everyone is going to agree with us. a few members have said in these comments that they see for themselves what I’m saying within the fandom and they feel it too; I hope we can change it. if not, well, at least I spoke up about it and I know that I’m not alone in my frustration. If I were the only one who felt that way, that would feel a bit alienating to me, but I wouldn’t stop feeling the way I do just because it’s not the general consensus.

        this response to you was not said in a negative tone, I just want to be clear on that. I’m just letting you know what my thoughts/intentions were behind the post ๐Ÿ™‚


        1. Right, and my comment was also not meant negatively, but I stand by impression that when I read your post, having observed interactions between the two of you, and no other conflicts between you and any other blogger or commentator, I thought you were referring to the blogger you’ve had the most conflict with, and I’m just saying, I can see why she thought so, too.
          That being said, you are both more than able to defend yourselves and your opinions on blogging etiquette. And look, we’re a new generation, We can have new rules or no rules or different rules.


          1. I can see how she thought it was about her, and maybe others knowing her defense of the “you’re doing it wrong” phrase thought so too, but it was meant as a general complaint. it seemed that way to you though, and you certainly have a right to your assumptions.

            one of the “rules” I took out of the post was that you shouldn’t provoke or argue with a blogger on their own blog because it’s not polite; how ironic! all my readers should feel free to disagree with me, feel comfortable enough to state your opposing opinions; we can’t learn about each other if we don’t discuss. and it would be very hypocritical of me to encourage you to just “say what you wanna say” but then shut you down.

            just don’t taunt me and try to make me cry; I have a brother for that ๐Ÿ˜›


          2. Yeah, well I didn’t state any opposing positions about your post and I don’t disagree with a lot of what you said. I just made that one point in response to a comment of yours. If you can;t disagree with the blogger who posted the story/opinion/viewpoint, then what? all you can do is comment saying how much you agree and love it? I don’t think so – so we’re on the same page there.
            Also, I didn’t take that specific “rule” away from the post.
            Let me say this, if someone reads a blog that is geared towards deep and detailed analysis of the small things an actor does in his craft, and this is what the blog is more or less known for, and then someone comes on with the comment that it’s not necessary or we shouldn’t analyze every small thing an actor does in his craft, – you can see how that can be taken as, “you’re doing it wrong.”
            The fact is, we’re all doing it a little differently, otherwise, why read more than one or two blogs?


          3. I know that’s where I get misunderstood the most, saying we don’t need to focus on all of the small details. I mostly say that in regards to Richard’s career being in jeopardy or those fans who are new to this fangirling thing and are struggling with the impact it may have on their everyday life. I feel for those fans who are getting completely wrapped up in things that end up stressing them out, I want to remind them that this is supposed to be fun! devaluing their feelings is never my intent, but I can see how I may be hindering instead of helping in that regard. picking apart characters, and coming up with various scenarios of what “could have” happened, I think is very interesting; I don’t think I’ve ever tried to stop that kind of analysis, I just sometimes see it from an unpopular angle. the fashion thing is mostly lost on me though, I’m a very casual person and don’t have a lot of knowledge in that department.

            like you, I enjoy the variety of the different blogs. I don’t want every blog to be like mine and I certainly don’t want every person to be like me. I get along better with those who have similar views as mine, of course, but I learn from those who are the most different from me.


          4. LOL. I’ve been so distracted by this and by the new Esquire shoot, that I’ve left a draft post hanging – A fashion piece. But it’s also a detective story.
            You know what a fan I am of your blog. You taught me how to do this ๐Ÿ™‚ ( you didn’t teach me the big smile)


          5. oh, that sounds intriguing! has Richard lost his brown shoes? do we need to find his leather pants? I’ll volunteer ๐Ÿ˜ˆ

            don’t feel bad, my daughter is home sick and I’ve totally neglected taking her temperature. if she’s burning up and goes into shock, it’s the fandom’s fault *laughs* (she’s only mildly sick)


  8. Well, this escalated quickly.

    It’s a sad state of affairs when we can’t really say what we want to say on our own blogs without it becoming a hotbed of emotions and opinions – every single one of them valid. It’s also sad that we’re not exactly wanted in other people’s blogs as well.

    Anyway, it’s difficult for me to formulate what I want to say because – I honestly have nothing to say at the moment other than I’ve really enjoyed reading everyone’s blogs and I always learn something new each time I do. It actually makes me happy to read other people’s thoughts for most of you are definitely more honest than I can ever be online and in real life – not to say that I’m dishonest – just that I keep a lot of things to myself regarding my thoughts about RA and my own life, and though I may email back and forth it’s like pulling teeth for me to put those thoughts down on a blog for all to see.

    But I hope you all still continue writing and I’ll continue reading. And sometimes I’ll comment when I feel like I have something to say. But I’ll be right here admiring you all for being much more courageous than I could ever be.


    1. It’s also a sad state of affairs when one cannot comment without malice without someone jumping down your throat, policing you in the name of preventing *you* from ‘policing’ other fans to the point where people will stop commenting, or even blogging. *That* is bullying and I think it needs to stop.


      1. To clarify, I’ll just rephrase:
        policing *you* in the name of preventing *you* from โ€˜policingโ€™ other fans to the point where people will stop commenting, or even blogging to avoid accusations that you are transgressing one of a series of rules whose boundaries are arbitrarily set by one person.


        1. I understood you better the first time *laughs* but I do agree the policing in the name of policing, is bullying; doing yourself what you are trying to prevent ๐Ÿ˜ฆ the whole “protection mode” thing as something negative is something along the same lines that I have issue with too: if you’re my friend and something or someone is making you uncomfortable, I’m going to take issue with that. why wouldn’t that same instinct kick in for someone I only admire from afar? that’s human nature.

          as with all of these points that we keep rehashing, I think they are good and honorable *in moderation* but when it turns into a witch-hunt against mere words/phrases, that can quickly create an atmosphere of oppression. how would Richard feel if he witnessed us acting like this in his name? it’s just embarrassing all the way around.


    2. I truly hope that the conversation that happened in these comments does not counteract my original post, that those who were afraid to share their thoughts and opinions before are even more afraid now.

      I’ve learned in my short 38 years that when arguments like these occur, they are very rarely *just* about the subject that is being discussed, or even truly *with* the person who is in front of you. but even knowing that, knowing that this is so much bigger than me; it still hurt. I may have unintentionally hurt someone else within the confines of a conversation that I thought was about something innocent, but to be purposely hurt just so I can “see how it feels”…I don’t know what to do with that.


    3. For me, too. I can talk about how the work affects me, and I don’t mind speculating on what’s going on, but I’m definitely not comfortable disclosing all my feelings – nor do I think it’s necessary for me. Most of them I don’t understand anyway.


  9. I’m playing catch-up and have not read any of the comments above mine. I probably won’t read them because I would never get caught up. All of that aside, love the post!

    Oh crap, I just scrolled up to your second to last comment and see that things went south after you posted. I hope things have improved.


    1. things definitely went south, that is a vast understatement! the reaction to this post caught me off guard, I expected some murmurings of disagreement but I did not expect to get attacked. real eye opener! it really shook me ๐Ÿ˜ฆ
      luckily I have made a few friends in this fandom who helped me through it, and the positive energy I continue to get from my regular commenters every time that I post cancels out the negativity ๐Ÿ˜Ž


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