Getting Personal

When I’m 105

John Green, one of the Vlogbrothers, and probably no relation to me, created a post called  Getting Personal about Getting Personal. He talks about the transactional nature of media. John is promoting the movie Turtles All The Way Down, based on his novel, even though he has no great financial incentive to do so. He just likes, no, loves the movie.

He was asked an innocuous question by a PEOPLE magazine reporter about what keeps his 18-year marriage strong. The answer doesn’t just reflect on him but delves into his wife Satah’s life. Ultimately, he shares a story he had told before, but he mused on it first.

Likewise, last year, his brother Hank shared his cancer diagnosis, in part because he’s part of a Nerdfighter community but also because he had to cut on his responsibilities for a time.

A friend of mine is going through a very serious family tragedy. Though they have alluded to it, they haven’t said it outright, probably because writing it makes it too real.

Formerly known as

I saw Chanel Miller on CBS Mornings recently. She was sexually assaulted by Stanford frat boy Brock Turner in 2015, though he got an outrageously light sentence. She was described as Emily Doe then.

In 2016, her victim impact statement at his sentencing hearing went viral. She outed herself in 2019 when she released Know My Name: A Memoir, which I thought was gutsy.

But she was on the program promoting her new children’s book, Magnolia Wu Unfolds It All. She was happy to be there because she didn’t want to be just known as a crime victim.  And she looked joyful, which made me quite happy.

So there may be value in sharing, but that’s not going to be everyone’s choice. And frankly, I see a lot of TMI, especially online.

Where’s the line?

Almost every week, I struggle to figure out the line between sharing and oversharing. I figure if I get to be 105, I’m going to publish my no-holds-barred book, the consequences be damned. Until then, I straddle the line when it comes to other people’s privacy and my own. You just have to wait another 34 years for my tell-all.

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