Deb Dana Thinks Some Things Are Better Left Unsaid

When I saw this week’s topic was “something you might not know,” I thought, “Hmm… What might my readers not know about me?”

Then it occurred to me: I’m a pretty open person, and chances are that if I haven’t shared something publicly, there’s a reason, and that reason may be as simple as “some things are meant to be private.”

We live in an era where we can broadcast every thought, every inclination, every mundane activity across a wide platform, sharing something as banal as a photograph of our breakfast with our friends and online acquaintances (guilty as charged).

And that’s fine. But the line between “sharing” and “over-sharing” is a thin one, and more than a few friends and acquaintances have crossed it, giving me insight into an aspect of their lives that, quite frankly, they probably should have kept to themselves.

I realize the line I refer to isn’t the same for everyone. Some people feel perfectly comfortable seeing a photograph of their college ex-boyfriend’s former roommate’s wife’s sonogram, or hearing a former colleague’s daily detailed account of his or her gym routine. The point at which one might say, “Okay, I didn’t need to know that,” isn’t the same for everyone. Plenty of my Twitter followers probably don’t care all that much about the tomatoes I grew in my garden.

But I do think there are certain things about ourselves we should keep private — some things we share only with special people in our lives, the ones who have earned our trust and the right to know those things about us. So while I’m happy to share bits about me and my life with the world at large, there are some aspects of my life I like to keep to myself, and — Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram be damned — I probably always will.

In the spirit of sharing…tell me: what are your thoughts on sharing personal information online?


4 Replies to “Deb Dana Thinks Some Things Are Better Left Unsaid”

  1. I like engaging in selective sharing! I’m genuine and honest, but I don’t tell everything. People *think* they know you and what they know well is a part of you. I think that’s okay. Of course, I do tend to write very personal essays but still, there are things I’d never write about. If I remember my own novel correctly, Evie wondered why it was okay to share your bed but not your bank balance—and admitted some things are just too personal. Great post, Dana. xo

  2. I love seeing tomatoes and sonograms! But yeah, there are other things that make me nuts… like Evie, money is off limits for me. (But then, so is the bedroom.)

  3. I love the tomatoes too!

    But I agree that the new Internet openness is a blessing and a curse. For me, the line is “would you want to have this shown on a movie screen with everyone you know in the audience?” And I mean EVERYONE – from my mom to my pastor to my deceased (and easily horrified) grandmother.

    If the answer is no, it stays offline.

  4. Such a timely subject, ladies! As I confessed recently (on FB no less!) I am constantly struggling to find a healthy balance for myself. More than not, I err on the side of less-is-more. Everyone’s comfort level is different. Mostly I want my interactions to feel genuine. Again, it’s not always easy to know how much or how little.

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