I like blogging because I feel like I can more nearly say what I feel…I don’t have to think about who I am talking to, and be intentional and sensitive according to the conversation. I edit myself a lot, and often…
For example…
• Around many of my classmates, I limit the use of the word ‘fuck’ (as well as shit, bitch, damn, and ass) a bit more than I do in many other of my social circles
• I am not completely upfront with my parents about my opinions about George W. Bush. This is because they are quite clear about their opinions (that he sits at the right hand of God) and if I am clear about my opinions (that he may sit at the right hand of Satan) they will think that I may sit at the right hand of Satan. And I sure do not ever talk about my romantic interests around them… that would, I am sure, put me seated practically on Satan’s lap.
• When my roommate comes into my roommate really upset to talk about his break up with his boyfriend, I do not at that point take the opportunity to complain about how the air conditioner is set way too low.
You get the point. We all edit, in a lot of situations. There are few opportunities I have to be anything close to entirely unedited, and blogging is one of those. Yes, people read it, so I cant just say anything, but it is people reading it that makes it even more fun for that reason. I can be myself and other people can see that.

But, I realize that editing is an important reality in life, even if I like a break from it every once in awhile. I did not come to this conclusion myself (despite the fact that I whine about it a lot) but this topic came up when I was having a conversation with my pastor.

Editing, he explained to me, sucks (this part I was well aware of), but it is necessary for effective change (this I didn’t think about). We have to edit to effectively interact with others… it would not improve my relationship with my parent if I talk to them about my opinions of the commander in chief, my classmates may think I am a heathen if I use bad language before they get to know me (not that they will think me less of a heathen when they do get to know me ☺). It makes more sense for me to wait to complain about the air until my roommate is in a better mood—both for his emotional well-being, and for our relationship.

This works for me, it makes sense… but a question/problem/frustration remains…

What about the person who is forced to edit? This is usually the person who is in the minority (a conservative in a liberal church, a woman working in an office of men, a lesbian in a conservative, hetero-normative divinity school…). What about them, about me? While my editing may be necessary for my long-term well being, and for the community (this is true to anyone’s editing, I am not being arrogant) what about for my own personal well-being. Because this editing is difficult… I feel isolated, lonely, and not authentic. But the other option is not any better. I’d feel brash, inappropriate, and therefore, still isolated.
So, for now, I edit, and try to hold on to those people with whom I can edit the least (shout out to D), and blog freely and without holding back.