In the last two weeks or so — or ever since that popular breast-feeding post — I’ve received an unusually large amount of comments from trolls. I’m not sure if it is THAT post or my post about my marital woes with Sophia or even my birthday post to Tanis, the Redneck Mommy. Maybe it is a combination of the three — a burst of popularity + a sob story + kissing ass. Trolls hate popularity, friendship, and/or a sign or weakness. Just this morning, I received a comment on my last post. I deleted it because it was off-topic, but the gist was that I was lame, unfunny, a nobody who hangs out with his mom, a pretend writer, pathetic loser, and someone who “couldn’t get laid by any mommyblogger, let along a self-respecting woman.” And as I’m reading this diatribe, I’m going, “Yes, Yes, Yes, Yes!!!” Thank you for understanding the real me.
Trolls are the most misunderstood individuals in the blogosphere. We brand them with a scarlet letter, but can’t we see the good in them? Isn’t it possible that these members of our community are just believers in “tough love.” Perhaps they do care about us, but not with the typical manner of support — the cliched “be yourself!” or “you rock!” Instead, they want to help you strip away the artifice, peel away the layers of the your onion, much like the finest therapist, or Doctor Phil.
I enjoy these troll comments, because the troll usually agrees with me. After all, I just wrote a post about a hooker falling asleep on my living room couch. I already know that the scenario is pathetic. That’s the point! So, friends, don’t worry about me or my feelings. Don’t protect me in the comments. If anything, I worry about the troll. I feel bad that I might have touched a nerve by writing about a sleeping hooker. I can only assume that the troll felt hurt because she has sleep apnea or was unsuccessful in her career as a hooker.
Many of us on the internet are upset because of that horrible incident at Rutgers last week where students posted a video of roommate having sex online, humiliating him, which ultimately led to his suicide. But not everyone feels that the two students who posted the video are criminals. I emailed this troll, who has a slightly different view. She thinks that this boy’s friends were trying to “help” him come out of the closet. Since he was a shy, sensitive boy, they took it on themselves to do what he could not do himself — enable him to be comfortable with who he is in public. Tough love.
That makes sense. After all, no one would publish personal videos or say mean things on blogs out of pure malice. I try to look for the good in everyone. My mother taught me that.
Maybe we should have a Thank Your Troll Day. There is so much ass-kissing online, so much bullshit. It is the trolls who do the necessary work of helping us look within ourselves with a clear, cold vision of a hawk.
It’s all interesting to me. A study in human psychology.
Sadly, trolls are not as successful with me, mostly because I am so self-denigrating and silly. What can you say that I haven’t already said about myself? Your technique works best, even kicks ass, when applied to those who are truly hurting, or overly-sensitive, or don’t have big-time bloggers as friends for support to scare you away. I say — focus on those bloggers who don’t have good senses of humor, or unfamiliar with handling personal criticism, especially those getting separated from their spouses or have just lost a baby or have come down with some life-threatening exotic disease. They deserve your full support. Your tough love comments will mean a whole lot more to them.
Now, back to the big issue — really — surely I can get laid by SOME mommyblogger. Ok, maybe not one of the bigshots who speak at one of the 3000 mommyblogger conferences running every other week, but at least one of the lesser-know ones. Right?