Home My Journey Criticised As A Chronic Illness Blogger For Not Showing Enough Sickness

Criticised As A Chronic Illness Blogger For Not Showing Enough Sickness

by InvisiblyMe

Criticism can be unpleasant to deal with, whether it’s insulting to the point of being abusive, or merely critical without intended harm. The writers, social media users, influencers and bloggers putting themselves out there online can be in the firing line for those who like to criticise . On occasion, you may find that someone takes umbrage with you and your content and thinks it appropriate to let you know they don’t like something. This happened to me again recently. Apparently, as a chronic illness blogger, I don’t talk constantly about my symptoms and how difficult life is, nor do I show enough ‘sick’ photos of myself for their liking.

The Critique :

I’ve had criticism before from out of left field, randomly and strangely, like being criticised for swearing, and criticised for saying I’m struggling when instead I should be grateful that at least I don’t have cancer. This time, it was a bit different. 

Someone contacted me recently to let me know their thoughts regarding what I share on InvisiblyMe and the associated social media. This person appears to have been a reader for a while and hasn’t said anything before, but they clearly felt their criticism was worth venting right now. Apparently, as a chronic illness blogger, my written posts and photos of myself don’t reflect the reality of living with illness, disability and pain. Huh?

I think this person is basically saying that the few photos of myself that see the light of day on my blog or Instagram show me looking “normal” and not ill. Maybe they think I’m not sick enough for their liking, but I took it more as a critique that I should be writing about my symptoms and how miserable I am, and showing photos looking sick. I’m not sure what they think “sick” looks like, and I’m not sure they would have considered this either.

I wonder if this person missed the posts I’ve done on invisible illness and how many people with chronic conditions actually look “fine” when they show themselves. You wouldn’t be able to tell they’re struggling and suffering. 

Or maybe this person doesn’t believe I’ve got any issues, which would be pretty weird. If I had the chance to go back in time and avoid ever having these health problems, I’d do it in a heartbeat. I didn’t choose this, nor do I want this. That’s just my personal feeling and I know not all “spoonies” would necessarily feel the same. 

This person seems to think my posts don’t show how bad the reality can be and also takes umbrage that I don’t disclose everything. They’re right, I don’t disclose everything. There are some things I don’t talk about and some things I can’t talk about, like my first surgery. Unfortunately, I’m a hypocrite as I truly believe there should be no shame or embarrassment with health problems, treatments you’ve had, or symptoms you experience, and yet there’s something I still can’t talk about. As for not showing the reality of how bad things are; if I were to do that, then every post could become a self-absorbed sob story about how unwell I am and how miserable I feel. Who wants to read that? Who wants to write like that? Not me. 

A black and white cartoon drawing of a woman with long hair taking a photo with a camera. Below is the post title : "Criticised as a chronic illness blogger not showing sick photos".

A Recent Visible Example Of Chronic Illness

I recently shared an incident that occurred on social media, deciding to do it as I was piqued by this person’s criticism shortly before. I was rudely awoken before 4am one morning with immense pain. So as not to wake my parents, I crept downstairs with great difficulty and got into the bathroom, figuring I’d wait it out and hope for the best. But then I suddenly got super sweaty, my hearing and vision went, and then so did I as I passed out. I didn’t make it out of the room and face planted the door handle with my full weight. I woke up in a heap on the floor, not quite knowing where I was. 

I couldn’t have been out for long so I imagine it would have been seconds or maybe minutes. When I was able to pull myself up, I eased out of the bathroom and seemed to wander through the kitchen and stood outside on the patio. My dad had got up by this point and was in the kitchen, so I know I apparently seemed very out of it, with blood running down my face. He didn’t think it important enough to check on me, but never mind. I wandered back upstairs and waited until I got my bearings and knew exactly where I was. I took a photo as proof for my memory. A little later, after wiping away more blood and making sure I wasn’t cross-eyed, I thought to hell with it, and posted it online. I’d never normally do it, mostly because it doesn’t cross my mind at a time like this. 

^ I’m sorry this photo is so horrifically huge. WP doesn’t seem to want to let me make Insta embeds smaller.

Even this photo doesn’t show you much other than wild hair. Maybe I shouldn’t have wiped away the blood so you’d see it running down my neck. Maybe I should have done a video so you could see how sweaty my hair really was. Maybe I should have taken photos inside my mouth the next day where it had swollen up. It still doesn’t tell you what happened or how I felt. No photo ever will. 

Why I Don’t Constantly Share The Ugly

I believe in showing and writing about the less popular aspects of life, the miserableness and difficulty that doesn’t necessarily get the views, but is, in my opinion, incredibly important. Some might see it as whinging but I see it as connecting to others who might feel have experienced something similar. 

When we feel bad in some way, perhaps because of our health and the situation we find ourselves in, many of us then compound this by instantly feeling bad for feeling bad. For instance, if you feel resentful for losing so much time and spending the only functional moments doing chores. Or if you find birthdays difficult, not because you’re having a toddler tantrum at not having a bunch of gifts to open, but because of the loss of friends and feeling behind in life. Or if you feel frustrated and disheartened by thinking you can’t have children, a partner and the career you wanted because your health won’t allow for it. 

Then you think – or someone unhelpfully tells you to consider – how others have it worse than you or how you should still be grateful for the things you do have. Guilt piles on top and now you feel even worse. It’s good to have perspective and to remember the things you can be glad about, but bloody hell. Your experience cannot be compared to someone else’s, it doesn’t work that way. You deserve to feel however you feel and not heap guilt on yourself for struggling from time to time. Knowing that others feel similarly to you in some way, and to be reminded that it’s okay, is important. 

But I will not write constantly about how miserable I may be because of my health, how my conditions affect me, how pain makes me want to jump out of a window. I will not write about feeling sorry for myself, because I don’t. I will not stop to think about getting a photo opportunity in while I’m throwing up my stomach lining or rolling around in bed with my insides twisted up. Funnily enough, I don’t think about, or have energy for, getting photos and Tweeting every moment of every day when I’m not well. I’d be doing it constantly. 

That would not help me, and it certainly wouldn’t help anyone else. 

I aim for balance – I believe in showing the good, bad and downright ugly of what we go through as individuals. But I wouldn’t focus solely on any part. I want InvisiblyMe to be a truthful, open (hypocritical withholding aside), and hopefully relatable in some way. I’d love for even one person to feel a little less alone as a result of something I share, because living with illness/pain/disability can be a lonely journey. 

Should I start getting my mum to photograph me when I feel like I’m dying? I don’t know, but I have no intention of doing so. Maybe I’ll start showing a little more of the horrible stuff, but it will always be balanced with advice articles, reviews, lighter posts. If you’re looking for a blogger to drown you in misery constantly and suggest life is over if you’re ill and in pain, then that’s not me, regardless of how I may personally be feeling. 

It’s Called Invisible Illness For A Reason

The very nature of so-called invisible illness means that what a person is going through isn’t immediately or obviously noticeable by looking at them. They could be feeling like utter hell, but look “fine” on the outside. Some may use mobility aids and other devices, that suggest something is awry, but not all. There can be signs and tells, like a frown with pain or randomly throwing up in public. How often will you see a chronically ill person display these signs or appear to be “chronically ill”? Likely not very often, if at all. What does “sick” look like? Like you usually look like, for the most part. You don’t turn into an ogre like something out of a horror film.

Many people living with health problems have spent their days trying to get on as best they can to get through the basics, not wanting to feel like a burden or draw attention to themselves. They become skilled at appearing “okay”. They likely won’t be seen when they can’t function enough to get out of bed or out of the house. Sometimes the question of “how are you” is just far too complicated and weighted to even consider answering anywhere near honestly, and thus “I’m fine” becomes the stock response. 

What is shown to others, both in person and online, is often a brief snapshot to show the less obviously ill or in pain version of ourselves. Much like how a lot of what’s shown on social media is only a snapshot of what someone wants you to see. You cannot accurately assume that someone is happy, successful and doing brilliantly because they show a continual flow of gorgeous photos looking joyful doing fun things. 

Facing Criticism As A People-Pleaser or “Sensitive Person”

Criticism can be unpleasant for most of us. Fortunately I’m not too bothered by this criticism, but it made me feel a bit defensive and question what I share. Other criticism has hit harder, and I’m sure others have likely received far more in the way of critique or even online abuse than I have over what they share online.

For the “people pleasers” among us, and those perhaps told they are “too sensitive” (like me), it can sting that bit more. To be criticised, especially when feedback is not requested, can feel like a personal attack, an insult that cuts deep even if it’s obviously inane and baseless. It could hurt all the more if you feel, accurately or not, that it holds a hint of truth. We don’t want to cause upset, we don’t want to be a failure; we want to be accepted and liked, we want to do well. We want to be everything to everyone, even if you realise it’s impossible. We can say we don’t care, that we’re tough and don’t need anyone’s approval, but often there’s a part of us that’s vulnerable to it.

To Blog Or Not To Blog 

When I first started this blog, I’d just had surgery for an ileostomy and thought I could raise a little awareness and write about the experience with a stoma bag and invisible illness. It gave me something to focus on when things were rocky, but I never thought I’d continue blogging. I figured a couple of months and I would have ditched it, putting it on the growing list of things I’m no good at. Turns out, I really liked being a part of this community, whether I was any good at blogging or not. So I stuck around and started to grow InvisiblyMe outside of a restrictive niche to encompass different aspects of health, chronic illness, lifestyle, etc. I wanted to move away from just personal experience and include more neutral content that can be informational and hopefully a little helpful in some way.

There have been a number of times where I’ve felt like giving it all up. The times when I get into that cycle of thinking I’m awful at it, that don’t have many followers, that everything I’m writing is pointless. Most bloggers go through this at times. The time after an awful experience with Lyrical Host, a website host provider, that was so angering that I wanted to give up and I felt stupid for having lost money to them. The biggest problem is when I’m snowed under with “stuff” to do and I can’t keep up; writing a post when your brain doesn’t wish to comply makes it a time-consuming process and it can start to feel hopeless the further behind you get. I’ve also questioned whether it’s worth it to share unpopular opinions and fight for what you believe in when you receive vitriol online, which is usually on social media or comments sections on news site. I wonder whether I should be voicing my opinions and standing up for what’s right when the bullies want to silence us. Then the quiet rebel in my head shouts, “fuck yes we should keep going!”.

A desk with sticky notes, pin board, pens and a laptop. On the open laptop screen is the word "blog" in large letters.

So I keep going. In fact, the initial hopelessness after times like these often comes a fire to persevere and we find ourselves more motivated. Blogging the one thing I have that’s mine, that I’ve worked hard to accomplish, no matter what I or others may think of it. The blogging community is priceless and while I’ve been fortunate enough to make friends through the blogging that I can keep in touch with by email or on social media, to give up blogging would likely cut me off from this community and involvement in the lives and musings of others. To not blog would destroy the one achievement I have to show since my health went down the pan. To not blog would take away something I have to work on and towards, and the huge learning experience that it all affords. 

While running a blog, paying for it and dealing with the technical aspects can be stressful, there are always enough positives to outweigh this. I hope other bloggers can feel the same if they’re in doubt. Of course there will come a time to let blogging go and hopefully that’ll be a decision made for the best of reasons; instead of running away from something or letting self-doubt eat you up, letting go may be about starting on a new chapter or focusing your efforts elsewhere. 

Fellow Bloggers : Be Free To Be You 

I do appreciate workable criticism – if anyone has any suggestions about my site, content or social media, please do let me know. If you’d like to have a dig at me for any reason, feel free but remember that bloggers are just ordinary people, probably struggling far more than you realise. 

Bloggers need to adhere to the platforms guidelines and not be an arse to anyone else. But no blogger needs to adhere to someone’s wishes about what they write about or how they write. Much as we are all individuals and should live, speak, act and dress as we wish and to be who we are, bloggers are also free to do their own thing. If a reader doesn’t like it, that’s not your problem and the reader can choose to go elsewhere. Many bloggers will want to make their readers happy, myself included, but nobody should ask you to be anything but you.

A black scroll divider.

Have you received criticism about your blog or other online content? Or do you think I should be sharing more of the reality of being chronically ill?

Caz  ♥

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77 comments

Animalcouriers September 1, 2022 - 3:55 pm

For goodness sake! Keep doin what you’re doin girl.

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Cat Forsley September 1, 2022 - 4:00 pm

sending You tons of love
You are a bright light .
xx
best xxx
C

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Susan B September 1, 2022 - 4:03 pm

Not so long ago, if anyone wanted to express a view on anything, they would need to write to a newspaper and hope that their letter would be published. These days, we are constantly invited to express our views just about everywhere and just about all the time. I guess it is inevitable that some people will miss the point, fail to edit their own thoughts or comment when they are unhappy.

Carry on doing what you’re doing and how you’re doing it. Best wishes.

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Ashley September 1, 2022 - 4:03 pm

That is some serious bullshit, and I would like to bop that person over the head with a rubber chicken. If you talked more about the negative, some doofus might complain about that. What I wonder is who these people are that think that it’s a reasonable thing to do to tell a blogger or someone on social media how they should or should not talk about their own life. If they don’t like it, stop reading, simple as that. People suck.

Hugs ❤️❤️❤️

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Cheryl, Gulf Coast Poet September 1, 2022 - 4:04 pm

Hang in there, Caz! It’s your blog. Write what you want and let others do the same! I personally like the articles about health that can benefit anyone.

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Laura Bailey September 1, 2022 - 4:08 pm

You are doing perfectly fine and are effective. Period.
You are and have to…do you. It’s your journey AND your blog. Everybody’s chronic illness journey is and will be different but all have bad days, worse days, better days and good days.
I’m sorry to hear that venter isn’t getting enough doom & gloom for their liking BUT I think it’s inspirational, uplifting and hope giving, to see someone who suffers, despite their pain, illness and suffering…rising up, overcoming, living life, still embracing life and lifting others with hope of that they can still have life beyond the illness.
Good for you if you show that their is hope to still have good days. And to grab fully onto life when you have them. Bravo for you being an inspiration.

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Melinda September 1, 2022 - 4:16 pm

Hey if they want to follow the complainers and those having a pity party there are plenty out there. Otherwise, tell the fuck off! I personally would block them so you don’t have to deal with this person who doesn’t have enough to do.

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Bo September 1, 2022 - 4:22 pm

Caz, a light house…

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Ali September 1, 2022 - 4:26 pm

Caz,
This is such a thoughtful and well written reflection. I can relate to much of what you have shared. Even though I don’t live with your circumstances. I look fine on the outside. I have struggled so much in silence.
I am continually pondering, How much do I chose to share of myself and with who in what way? It is a powerful and important question. It is not what other’s think. It is about the life I am creating and what I stand for.
I hear your intention of sharing authentically, creating connection, and at the same time wanting to bring other’s up with your posts. What a beautiful intention. Keep it up. Keep being you.
I hope you find the same intention in my poetry. I write to create connections that bring lift to others.

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InvisiblyMe September 7, 2022 - 4:23 pm

Thank you for such a thoughtful post, Ali. And for your kindness. I’m amazed by the comments this post has got, I’m blown away. I just wanted to say to you that I get the pondering for your own sake in wondering what to share. It’s an important question, and it’s good to focus on that rather than what others may like or think. That said, you’re already doing good with your blog and bringing a smile, inspiration and a touch of creativity to your readers with your poetry so I hope you keep that going as you do it brilliantly. You’re clearly a talented writer and you use that for the good of others you share your words with. xx

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Molly | Transatlantic Notes September 1, 2022 - 4:31 pm

Sometimes people are the worst; spreading unnecessary upset and frustration. I think finding a balance when sharing something so deeply and inherently personal (such as a chronic illness) is vitally important; and more to the point, that balance is what works for you and not the person who decided to insert their whole head up their arse and message you with that bunch of fuckery. Carry on as you are!

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Liz September 1, 2022 - 4:42 pm

I have not received criticism on my current or previous blogs. But when I used to be a deaf blogger with my blog “Liz’s deaf blog,” I got harshly attacked on something I shated that I learnt. Now what I shared I learnt that I quoted, was what was on a banner inside a deaf centre I used to attend. But I was harshly attacked even though I reminded that commenter that as I said in my blog post, it wasn’t my words, these were actual words quoted from banner as I said in blog post. But that person continued to carry on with me.

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InvisiblyMe September 7, 2022 - 4:26 pm

I’m sorry you got such vitriol, Liz. But gosh, the stupidity there is incredible to attack you for what you’ve written… when they weren’t your words! Oh dear. There’s no dealing with some cases of criticism like this. D’oh! x

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Benn Bell September 1, 2022 - 4:45 pm

Really?

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walkingoffthechessboard September 1, 2022 - 4:49 pm

Caz, like the other commenters have said…you just be you. One of the things I’ve found in my little blogging bubble is those who visit get the fact sometimes I’m going to post on something they have no idea about, don’t care about, etc. They just either skip commenting or advise they don’t know much about the subject, but still show support. I have specifically found the WordPress community to be welcoming, which is why I keep coming back to it after taking blogging breaks in the past. I don’t dabble in other social media because it is not social at all. Too toxic for my tastes.

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Anne Fraser September 1, 2022 - 4:53 pm

If you are healthy, you are allowed to post photos in glamorous outfits and full makeup, You don’t have to stop wanting to look good just because you have a chronic illness.

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Bette Cox September 1, 2022 - 5:14 pm

Thanks for sharing! Please just keep being who you are, liked or not liked by those critics, and don’t let their comments discourage you from doing what you are doing very well! Love, Bette Cox, Florence, SC, USA

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Rachel Duerden September 1, 2022 - 5:42 pm

Please take no notice of that incredibly unfair and insensitive criticism. I love your blog and can”t find anything to criticise about it.
Just keep writing what you want. I think your blog is helpful and relevant to many people. X

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InvisiblyMe September 7, 2022 - 11:10 pm

That’s so kind of you, Rachel, thank you. I didn’t mean for my post to be all about me but it made me think of the types of criticism many bloggers and social media users may find themselves in receipt of at some point. The responses I’ve had here in the comments are just mind-blowing. Thank you very muchly 💜

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Rachel Duerden September 8, 2022 - 11:44 am

Because we love your blog so much. X

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Ronit September 1, 2022 - 5:44 pm

Simply ignore these bullies. Don’t let them deter you.
You’re doing a great job and raising awareness.
That’s all that matters. 🙂

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Blanca September 1, 2022 - 7:07 pm

Caz, no matter what people say, you are doing a brilliant job raising awareness about chronic pain and disease and the way you approach chronic illness is amazingly inspiring. Keep doing what you do so well and don’t take any notice about negative and insensitive criticism.

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Smelly Socks and Garden Peas September 1, 2022 - 7:41 pm

Ah Caz, the haters gonna hate. Please don’t stop blogging. You are doing an amazing job communicating the reality of chronic illness. Just keep being you and whoever criticised you, block them. If they were in your real life, you’d stop seeing them and that’s what they deserve.

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Barbara McLullich September 1, 2022 - 7:54 pm

I am truly shocked at how someone could be so cruel as to say such horrendous things to you after all you go through. Please ignore their complete ignorance Caz as they have obviously nothing better to do. You are a trooper through and through and your readers hold you in high regard including me. I quite often get the classic look when i park in a disabled spot but i just irritate them even more by smiling as they have no idea what my health problem is and actually it is none of their business. You carry on blogging just like you always do. Your posts are a pleasure to read. Stay well special lady, Bar

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Unmasked2020 September 1, 2022 - 8:48 pm

Hi Caz,
Some people just have so little in their own lives that all their surplus energy needs to escape. Unfortunately there is no control knob so all that pent up vitriol hits the first target. Shame there’s not a ‘get a life!’ emoji.
You are great and you do a power of good for your readers – fellow bloggers and followers alike. And some out there don’t deserve the time of day. I’m guessing a majority of us with invisible conditions will eventually get that negative slap down. But please – take that nastiness with a hugely massive pinch of salt – because people like that don’t deserve shit.
Take care, dear Caz. Best from Maz, x

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Ogden September 1, 2022 - 9:05 pm

Probably an ass-hat! 🙂 XX

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c.a. September 1, 2022 - 9:35 pm

Hey, Caz, let me join the immense choir gathering to say what a fantastic blog you present! Fair criticisms or corrections are usually welcomed by intelligent bloggers, but personal attacks or vindictiveness are not. I used to do a blog called The Thoughtful Christian on a different platform and expressed my views about Darwinian evolution, courteously and objectively. A respondent raked me over the coals for being a Luddite and an unintelligent blob who never evolved! 😲
I politely responded how in pursuing a Med-Tech bachelor’s degree I sat under many hours of evolutionary teaching and wondered how many hours my correspondent had spent reading views about creation by scientists with which he did not agree. He kindly did not reply after that, and in my mind, I imagined him nursing HIS wounds and blubbering about this narrow-minded unscientific ignoramus. 😇 (Note, I am NOT an angel, but felt like I got that one right without antagonizing the critic.)
Keep up the valuable and kind work you do.
❤️& 🙏, c.a.

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Sandee September 1, 2022 - 9:50 pm

You do what you’re doing and don’t let others tell you you’re not sick. Don’t show the ugly either. We all love you and know that you’re sick. Good grief.

Sending you tons of loving hugs, Caz. ♥

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Cate Reddell September 1, 2022 - 10:26 pm

Arghhh?! Keep doing what you’re doing Caz, and don’t let the turkeys get you down.

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Lindsay September 2, 2022 - 1:35 am

That person has clearly not read your blog/social media closely, because I have always thought you do an excellent job of showing the real side of chronic illness (which, by the way, DOES include some happy moments or some moments where we look good. Not everyone with a chronic illness is miserable, and that’s an awful stereotype to suggest).

But it’s YOUR blog and YOUR social media and that means you get to post what you want, when you want, how you want, under the circumstances you want. Fuck what anyone else thinks.

Keep doing your thing!

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Ned Hamson September 2, 2022 - 2:25 am

Keep going and doing the great job you are doing. Your blogging and reviews are well done!

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Greg Dennison September 2, 2022 - 6:35 am

I like your blog just the way it is. That other person needs to mind his own business.

And you still look great in that wild hair picture.

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Carolyn Page September 2, 2022 - 7:29 am

Ahhhhhh… Can you help it if you are the finest ‘invisible illness’ suffering good looking woman whose postings, reviews, humour and (in general) writings are incredibly real, honest, modest and fascinating? Of course not… It seems, to those of us gifted with your insights, the aforementioned characteristics are so natural, and cannot be anything other than an integral part of ‘Caz’.
Keep on keeping on, Caz. You are doing a fine job. Probably more than you’ll ever know!

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Despite Pain September 2, 2022 - 10:12 am

Caz, I think you already know my views on this. It’s your blog, do it your way. Chronic illness blogging is a funny thing – we have to show the dark side so we get awareness and show we’re real, but most of us try to balance it with other things. Posts about treatments, coping strategies, homelife, reviews and lighter-hearted posts. You give that balance perfectly. You don’t need to change. But whoever told you that ought to change how they think. I can just picture you with your head stuck down the toilet throwing up, saying Mum, quick take a pic. No, actually I can’t picture that. And I don’t want to picture that. If that person thinks that’s how your blog should be, then they could start their own blog. I don’t imagine they’d get too many followers though!

Keep doing what you’re doing. You’re doing it perfectly well. And try to ignore negative comments or messages. That’s easier said than done, I know. I’ve been criticised for posts that I’ve written. I can’t possibly have trigeminal neuralgia or live with any kind of pain because I sometimes write posts about trying to find things that make me smile. So there you have it, if you smile or just try to smile, you must be healthy. People are funny, Caz, not always in a ha-ha sense. All I can say is, just continue being you.

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ReMiXtuReaL September 2, 2022 - 10:55 am

This is truly saddening. You write well and somehow somebody is being negative towards you. Hope that things will soon be alright for you. 😊

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The Empties Diaries September 2, 2022 - 12:27 pm

Thanks for this perspective.

Not everything needs to be out there.

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Cindy Georgakas September 2, 2022 - 1:18 pm

sorry about this Caz. You can’t please em all and clearly this is this person’s issue, not yours. this is your blog , your post,your life to do exactly as you choose!!💖💖💖👏

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SS September 2, 2022 - 2:28 pm

Wow, that’s nuts. I know writing is subjective to readers but someone saying you’re not seen as ill enough, is a low blow. What you said about balance makes sense, trying to share the good and the bad. I try to do the same but if it’s a tough time, I’m not going to pretend I’m okay either. Venting helps so much that I can be writing something depressed and by the end I feel a lot better. Just stay true to your own voice and lean on others that know you’re wonderful as you are 🙂

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James Viscosi September 2, 2022 - 3:28 pm

I think you strike an excellent balance in your posts and have never once felt like you are either sugarcoating or withholding. And, yeah, the “Invisible” part of your blog’s name is important. You just keep listening to that little rebel in your head, and I’ll keep reading. 🙂

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The Oceanside Animals September 2, 2022 - 4:15 pm

Charlee: “Hisses to that person.”
Chaplin: “Yeah, and purrs to you!”
Lulu: “And also tail wags!”

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Belladonna September 2, 2022 - 5:45 pm

The person should be ashamed of themselves! You are doing a fantastic job just and I love your reviews.

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Ann Coleman September 2, 2022 - 10:16 pm

Ignore the criticism and write your blog the way you want to write it! If someone doesn’t like it, they don’t have to read it, plain and simple.
I’m so sorry someone did that….you don’t deserve it. No one does!

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Jacqui Murray September 2, 2022 - 10:20 pm

I find my chronic illnesses are much easier to handle if I ignore them as much as possible! Or pretend they don’t exist.

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Darnell September 3, 2022 - 2:16 am

Caz, I feel your blog gives the right balance of awareness and personal health information. If you focused on all of the negative aspects of your chronic illness…with pictures…many like myself would not follow you. I’m here like many others because you provide information on what we can do in our personal situations. In other words, you stay positive. Nobody has good days all the time. To expect you to talk about bad days or post proof of illness pictures is unreasonable. I think that person should find another blog to follow. Take care, and best wishes always.

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craig sabin September 3, 2022 - 2:41 am

Let me just say I really feel for how awful it must have been to receive that criticism, Caz. I know many of us tend to overthink things, second guess ourselves, and so on, and the last thing we (and especially those of us struggling with chronic illness) need is uninvited criticism. I’m so sorry. To make it all worse, the criticism is not even valid in the least. I wish you could just dump all of those worthless thoughts in the trash bin and not waste another second of your time doubting or second guessing yourself on this.

As you know full well, people who don’t understand, even well-meaning people, often say or do the most insensitive (and even hurtful) things, and who can even begin to analyze what goes through the minds of so many others. Even most “normal” people are a complete mess inside so I hope you don’t waste time trying to figure out why they said what they did (like I know I would if I were you). I hope you can just let it go and move on, resting in being who you are and not trying to be this way or that way to please others.

Anyway, I pray that you can have a peace about continuing to simply be yourself and express yourself in the way that is natural for you. It is a blog, not a reality TV show for prying eyes who think they know best how others should behave.
Take care,
Craig

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InvisiblyMe September 10, 2022 - 11:17 pm

Craig, you have been so kind leaving such a thoughtful and considerate comment, so thank you very much. It’s appreciated, more than you realise. And you make an excellent point about not trying to analyse why someone may do/say something or try to figure out what they’re thinking. Letting go isn’t easy but it sure does beat trying to find elusive answers or hurt yourself more in the process. I didn’t want this post to become just about me, but rather to use the recent experience to share as I’m sure I’m not the only one to receive criticism about the things they share online, in a blog, on social media etc. It affects me more than it ‘should’ as I am apparently ‘too sensitive’, but as you know also with chronic illness we already go through a mind-boggle at each turn and our confidence can be knocked so many times along the way. It’s important to grow our confidence in being who we are and embracing that, despite any uninvited criticism or hateful judgement along the way.

Thank you again – take good care of yourself 🙏 x

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Monch Weller September 3, 2022 - 6:05 am

Well, the comments above have outlined what you need to do – so I’ll just add this one.

We have a saying here in the Philippines: “A tree with lots of fruit is often pelted with stones.”

I rest my case.

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InvisiblyMe September 10, 2022 - 11:18 pm

Now THAT is a good saying! Even though I’m not sure I’m that fruitful 😉 Thank you! x

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Catherine Green September 3, 2022 - 11:23 am

Hi Caz,

I personally think you have a great balance for your blog/social media. And like you say, a blog is personal, we only answer to ourselves, not some faceless random “reader.” They clearly have their own personal demons to exorcise and lashed out at you for finding a platform that helps relieve the pressure.

Keep going! xxx

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DutchIl September 3, 2022 - 2:16 pm

Thank you for sharing!!.. it is your blog and you are doing a wonderful job sharing with others and are no doubt a role model for many,…to deal with life’s challenges with courage and determination… just continue to do what you do, let your fingers do the walking and your heart do the talking and pay no heed to the negative people in this world…. “Consult not your fears but your hopes and your dreams. Think not about your frustrations, but about your unfulfilled potential. Concern yourself not with what you tried and failed in, but with what it is still possible for you to do…” (Pope John XXIII ).. 🙂

Hope all is well in your part of the world and until we meet again..
May the love that you give
Always return to you,
That family and friends are many
And always remain true,
May your mind only know peace
No suffering or strife,
May your heart only know love and happiness
On your journey through life.
(Larry “Dutch” Woller)

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Kerry September 3, 2022 - 7:07 pm

Caz, please keep blogging. I have deleted a number of blogs from just one comment that hurt me. Invisible illness is hard to cope with. I was happiest the year I had my leg in full casts for a year. Finally – I got some sympathy. (The codeine could also have been making me happy…) My most popular posts are those full of humor or cute animals but I like to post the others because real life is not like that. Your wonderful blog is yours to do with as you wish – just delete the comments that add nothing to your life. Even with blood pouring down your face, you are a beautiful lady with gorgeous bedhead hair!! 💟💟💟

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InvisiblyMe September 11, 2022 - 4:29 pm

Oh Kerry, I’m so sorry, not just for the blogging aspect with criticism but for what you’ve been through with your health. I get where you’re coming from with the cast – finally something tangible, visible, something others will understand. I really, really hope that if ever you come into contact with a moron who decides to come out with some criticism on your blog that you can read back your own kind words in your comment here. I don’t want you deleting any blogs anymore because of anyone else. Sending lots of love and best wishes your way 💜 xx

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Michelle Curtis September 3, 2022 - 11:57 pm

I’m so glad you wrote about this, Caz. I’m very uncomfortable with a lot of things people seem to be all too comfortable saying to complete strangers on the internet. I’m really glad you decided to blog about the incident because you made some excellent points about invisible illness and tge pitfalls of health blogging, too. So much of this is why I gave it up.

I think you fo a brilliant job balancing the good and bad on your blog and a really good job at protecting your privacy and mental health while also sharing your experiences and feelings.

Being a blogger doesn’t mean we’re obligated to share every little thing with followers. Someone will always be dissatisfied or disagree with something. You’re doing a brilliant job! I hope you know how much you’re appreciated and loved by the community, me especially!

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Digital Empire September 4, 2022 - 3:53 am

You are doing great Caz. It doesn’t matter what you write, we appreciate you for who you are. And whatever you may feel like writing at any time, we’ll just appreciate you even more.

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Michele Anderson September 5, 2022 - 1:09 am

Caz, I say the hell with the critics. You’re doing a great job helping people. They are just jealous.

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Cat Strawberry September 5, 2022 - 9:37 am

Im so sorry you’ve had to go through this. When it’s a very visible disability so many seem understanding but when it’s invisible we’re called liars, or people trying to get sympathy undeserving. But the truth is that invisible disability is as difficult to deal with as visible one, even moreso as we don’t often get help or special treatment, or understanding. You keep blogging and ignore that person, it’s their problem and not yours. If they find your content so upsetting they could just unfollow instead of do that. Keep writing and hugs for all that you do❤️ You know this post’s made me want to write more about my own invisible illness 😃

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Dawn Pisturino September 5, 2022 - 8:55 pm

All my followers who have chronic illnesses, including cancer, try to write upbeat and positive posts, even when it’s obvious that they don’t feel well. The idea is to give hope to others. Some people are just miserable and hate the world and want everybody else to be miserable, too.

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InvisiblyMe September 11, 2022 - 4:32 pm

I think you might be right – and I’m miserable enough, I don’t need to make it worse or make others miserable at the same time! 😉 I think showing reality and talking about the unpopular stuff is so important, but so is balance. x

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BBYCGN September 6, 2022 - 12:41 am

I wrote you a super long comment, Caz, and lost it. 😤 But, you’re not alone. I’ll try to get back to this post and re-comment because… well, you’ll see after I post it. It was a reply to someone’s criticism I wrote like a year ago.

Plus, I just had a new “knows everything about me and my entire life from a few words on my blog even when the post states it’s a fictional piece” commenter just a few days ago, too. I wrote her a reply telling her what I thought about her comment and she blocked me. LOL.

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InvisiblyMe September 11, 2022 - 4:34 pm

Aww I’m sorry the comment was lost to the Interweb world! It’s so damn annoying when that happens. I’ve started trying to ‘copy’ all my comments when I leave them on someone’s blog just in case that happens, so I can just ‘paste’ it again. Typically though most of the times it happens are the times I’ve not copied it first 😆 Thank you for taking the time to write again and to share this with me. It tells you something when that other person blocked you because you clearly caught how off-base she was in what she said to you! And the reply to the commenter the other year? Brilliant! 👏 x

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BBYCGN September 11, 2022 - 7:26 pm

Thank you, Caz. ♥️ I will copy my comments,too. Brilliant idea! ♥️ You Rock!

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BBYCGN September 6, 2022 - 12:50 am

This is the reply I wrote to a commenter about a year ago:
“I stated that about my life “outside the blog” because of the several who mislead themselves into wild tangents by basing the whole of my existence on that which they gather solely from my posts and comments. This is the delusional thinking that forms their far-fetched Smear Campaigns as they take off on their judgments against me which have no substantial basis in the real world.”

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Ellie Thompson September 6, 2022 - 12:59 pm

Honestly, Caz, you are a million times better than this person who chose to criticise, accuse and blame you for something that you’ve ‘apparently’ done ‘wrong’. You’ve done nothing wrong at all. I find your blog so helpful in so many ways. I can identify with chronic illness, and in my case, like yours, the disability, whether physical, mental or emotional, often remains unseen and unheard. I appreciate that I’m a wheelchair user, and perhaps, my illness is more obvious, but I still come across times, on good days, when I’m able to do more; some bright spark tells me I’m not as disabled as they thought I was! They really have no idea.

I find your blog so honest, authentic and sensitive and I appreciate and love that you are just yourself. Not everyone’s life is a bowl of roses, least of all yours. Please, keep doing what you do so well – and that’s just to be yourself and continue writing. I’ve learned a lot from you and appreciate the work you put into your blog, especially at times when you’re not feeling at all good. It’s all the more appreciated for that. Ignore these critics – they are not worth your time and effort. There are plenty of readers here (including me) who love you for who you are. Take good care of yourself as best you can, my friend. Love Ellie xxx 🦢🌹💛

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Anne Sandler September 6, 2022 - 9:45 pm

Part of living with a chronic illness is finding gratitude and light in your circumstance. When you blog about good things, you’re saying no matter how bad things are, there is hope and love. Don’t let people tell you how to live your life.

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Kadie September 7, 2022 - 3:57 am

I love your blog! Keep doing what you’re doing! I haven’t really received much criticism, I mostly get spam comments and a few supportive ones. You should only share what you are comfortable with sharing. And it’s okay to be a hypocrite (to use the word you used) sometimes,

I think we all do it, it’s easy to say there should be no shame or embarrassment but we all still feel it sometimes. It’s your blog, share what you want to share. I’ve always enjoyed reading your posts and hope to again now that I plan to spend more time reading blogs and blogging again.

I sometimes get concerned about sounding too self-absorbed and sounding like I’m giving a sob story as you put it and I don’t want my blog sounding like that either, though sometimes it did. I’m hoping to avoid that “trap” this time around, and I think you do pretty well at avoiding it, and don’t blame you for not wanting to write that stuff all the time.

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Terri, Olive Tree Saints September 7, 2022 - 10:48 pm

Caz, don’t ever let anyone dim your light! As so many have expressed already, you (and your blog) are such a wonderful presence here in the blogosphere, and a fabulous human being. This is your blog, your social media, and you should post whatever YOU feel comfortable sharing. Sending lots of love and hugs your way sweet friend!

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D. Wallace Peach September 9, 2022 - 5:10 pm

I’m so sorry that this happened to you. People are more than their illnesses and disabilities. They’re more than their challenges and successes. I think it’s important to show that despite chronic illness, life is broad and deep and subject to our perceptions, attitude, courage, and determination. Be your beautiful self and share yourself, all of who you are!

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Kymber Hawke September 9, 2022 - 11:05 pm

I can’t believe this happened to you. I’m so sorry someone took it upon themselves to treat you this way, Caz. You don’t deserve it. I think you should show only what you want to, good or bad. It’s not up to someone else to decide what you should post. I really appreciate what you do, and wish you all the best as you continue. I’ve learned so much from you. xoxo Sending you love and hugs.

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Jenna September 12, 2022 - 2:39 pm

wow. so sad that you needed to explain yourself. that person needs to come over to my blog titled ‘live a great story’ boy would they have issues with me! (and let them try lol!! ) I share lots of ‘happy’ to give hope and inspiration to anyone fighting this disease… we can still try and give ourself a great life, make the best of some really shitty circumstances. just because my readers see joy amongst the pain does not give them a right to judge the severity of the disease I live with. You keep doing you girl!! people who don’t live with this disease have no true understanding just how debilitating it can be -even if we were just posting about the ‘ugly’.

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Kit Dunsmore September 12, 2022 - 3:34 pm

There seems to be a belief out there that writers are supposed to share every gory detail, that the bad stuff we suffer through is supposed to be our material, that it’s our duty to share it. And there are the many people who have no idea what it’s like on the inside when you have a chronic illness that isn’t visible. But we are allowed to keep some things private. We do not have to share every damn thing that happens to us. And I’m sorry if we don’t look as sick as you think we should. We’re doing the best we can to function today, and looking “normal” is actually a goal. I would like to feel normal as well, but any normal I can get is helpful.

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Christy B September 12, 2022 - 7:57 pm

Caz, I think you do great at sharing your reality – And as with most people there are good days and not so good ones. You explain this reality well, as well as providing uplifting information and related health resources. As you say, be true to you. That’s one critic who is outnumbered by the number of comments I see here supporting you!

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Graham September 13, 2022 - 5:31 pm

Carry on doing what you are doing! It’s not like anyone is being forced to read your blog if they don’t like it.

All the best to you.

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Mark Bierman September 14, 2022 - 10:57 am

I really think there are people who live for knocking others down (or at least trying). They don’t know your truth, they are not you, so please just ignore them and carry on the great blog you’ve been doing.

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Bonnie A. McKeegan September 15, 2022 - 3:33 pm

F YES, keep blogging, Caz!! I am always so delighted when I pop on and see your posts. I can’t read them all but knowing you are here gives me hope that I will find my own way back to blogging regularly. You are an inspiration for sure. For months I’ve been questioning my own motive, purpose, and value of blogging. Having not found substantial satisfactory answers, I’ve been avoiding it. Your post right here reminded me not to give up. Thank you!

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mistermuse September 16, 2022 - 3:09 am

I know what it’s like to for a person with serious health issues to “look normal.” My youngest (51 years old) daughter, who lives with and is supported by my wife and I, has incurable myalgic encephalomyelitis but looks perfectly normal. A nymber of doctors told her it’s all in her head until we finally found one who not only believes her, but goes out of his way to help her as best he can….otherwise, I don’t know what we would have done.

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Kally September 16, 2022 - 1:57 pm

Caz! Don’t let them get to you. These are trolls who loves to spread negativity around. You totally don’t deserve this abuse. Big hugs.

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Kimmie September 17, 2022 - 6:19 pm

I’m a people-pleaser too, so I feel you. That’s a real bully type to say something like that. I love your blog; keep being you. Sending hugs your way. Don’t let such ignorance bring you down!

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