October 3, 2017

Mental Health Monday: Freeing Myself of the Anxiety from Social Media

Once again, this post has been a long time coming. It's a topic I've been wanting to write about for over five years. I never actually thought I would bring myself to do it, because it makes me my most vulnerable; but, I finally feel like I'm in the right frame of mind to do so. (Hopefully I'm not just hypomanic, only to wind up regretting this later! haha). As I was about to post this last night, my internet went out! So here goes...


I started blogging in 2000. Back then, it wasn't really called "blogging"--it was referred to as an online journal. I basically wrote as if it was my diary (much like I do now). I had a small handful of readers, and even though we'd never met in person, I felt like they were friends. I was extremely honest and open, and I felt comfortable being that way.

When I switched to Blogger, I never expected to get so many new readers so quickly. I only made the switch because posting photos was easier on Blogger than it was on my previous platform (called Open Diary). When my blog readership grew very quickly, I was terrified. I had no idea why people were reading the random goings-on in my life, and I started to feel self-conscious. However, I had been blogging for 11 years at that point, so I just kept writing how I always had.

At that point, I never expected the hate that I would soon get.

I don't write a very controversial blog, so I couldn't understand why people would go out of their way to write comments or emails that were directly trying to hurt me. Having blogged for 11 years, I was so used to people being kind (or at least respectful); so when people started writing comments that were deliberately hurtful, I was taken aback.

The first time I saw a hate-thread on social media about me, I cried for three days. I wanted to quit blogging, crawl into bed, and not come out. I began to question what was wrong with me, and I wondered if what those people said was accurate. I began to wonder if my "real life" friends thought the same things about me. (The comments I refer to in this post come from several sources, not just my blog itself: blog comments, my blog's social media, and email.)

In general, those comments filled me with self-doubt and made me question who I am--what kind of person I am. I'd always considered myself to be very kind, sensitive, sympathetic/empathetic, and generous. When I started getting the hurtful comments, I began to wonder whether I was, in fact, a terrible mom and role model; a lazy housewife without a "real" job; a selfish friend/daughter/sister; an unhealthy yo-yo dieter; and all sorts of other things.

Just sitting around eating bonbons and watching daytime soaps
while my husband is at work, because that's what I do all day long.

My kids couldn't ask for a better role model! I taught them the
best way to pack in the most sugary toppings on frozen yogurt.

Way too selfish to show support for my family. I just enjoy
wearing matching shirts in public for no reason.

Drinking on the job

Overall, 99% of the feedback I get on my blog is positive and/or respectful; but it was that 1% that stuck in my mind. Each time I got a mean comment that was meant to hurt me, it was all I could focus on. I desperately wanted to be one of those people who could just brush off the negativity and move on.

I tried not to care. I lied to myself and tried to convince myself that I didn't care.

One day I noticed a ton of traffic coming from a particular site I'd never heard of, and I clicked over to it to see what the traffic was all about. It turned out to be a hate site directed toward bloggers, and there was a thread about me. I read it and cried--again, I was tempted to stop blogging.

From that day on, I dreaded signing into Blogger. Until Blogger changed their sign in screen recently, the home page would show my traffic (page views, search words, and traffic sources). I started covering the screen with my arm when I signed in, so that I couldn't see where my traffic was coming from. I knew if I saw that hate site, my stomach would feel like I'd swallowed lead, and I would feel the worst anxiety I'd ever felt.

I never read that site again (even when I saw that I was getting traffic from it), because I didn't think I'd be able to handle the hateful comments (and what good would it do, really?); but even seeing that I was getting traffic from it would eat me up inside, always making me wonder what they were writing about me.

Another thing I started to dread was 9:00 in the evenings--when my blog post would go live. Anonymous comments were enabled then, and I would be filled with anxiety while I waited for the first comment on my post. I had Gmail notifications on my phone, so whenever I would get an email, it would pop up on my phone (I receive an email for each comment that someone writes). Once 9:00 came around each day, I would have my phone in hand--heart racing, sweating, irritable, worrying about the comments.

Whenever I saw "Anonymous has left a comment...", my anxiety would skyrocket. The mean comments are always anonymous. Like I said, 99% of the feedback was positive, so I really shouldn't have been so anxious; but as you know, you can't exactly choose how you feel.

It got so bad that I had constant anxiety when thinking about my blog. Until then, I had loved writing every day. I always looked forward to writing in my blog, reading the comments, and meeting new people. It brought me joy. Once the anxiety got to the point where it was affecting my entire life, I knew I had to change something. But I didn't know what to change.

So, I stopped writing as frequently. And when I did write, I tried to keep it kind of boring. I stopped writing such personal things so that if people had something mean to say, at least it wouldn't be so much directed at me.

But I soon learned that it didn't matter what I wrote--there would always be somebody who would find something to say in order to make me feel bad. Still, I tried to keep my blog positive. One time, I posted a photo of me in a dress because I thought I looked nice (I don't dress up often) and someone called me a "smug c**t"--I actually burst out laughing at that comment, though! Even to this day, my friends will joke around about what a "smug c**t" I am, hahaha.

SO smug--just look at how that face says,
"I'm so much better than you"

In all seriousness, though, the comments changed me as a writer. I hated that it did, because I wasn't writing the things I wanted to write. From the time I learned to read, I wanted to be a writer when I grew up. And I was good at it! I used to win the creative authors award each year, and I wrote short stories in my free time.

By allowing those comments to get under my skin, I was holding back so much of what I had to say. I desperately wanted to just focus on the good and on being myself, but I hated feeling so vulnerable when I would post personal things. So, I chose to write about impersonal, kind of boring things that didn't make me feel so vulnerable. I even lost a lot of readers, and I felt relief about that.

When I was going through depressive episodes in particular, I had a very hard time writing anything at all. When you look at last year's depression, I wasn't blogging very often--I just didn't feel like I could deal with hateful people when I was feeling so down as it was.

Early last year, I disabled anonymous comments, and it helped tremendously. Now, if someone disagrees with me, they tend to do so in a respectful manner--and that's all I ask for. I certainly don't expect everyone to agree with everything I say, but there is a way of expressing disagreement without deliberately trying to be hurtful.

I was bummed to disable the anonymous comments, because I had several "regulars" who would use the anonymous form and then sign the comment. I even sent several of them emails to let them know why I was disabling the anonymous option, and they were very understanding. That's actually how I became friends with Martine, who I met up with when I went to San Diego this year :)

I also disabled my Gmail notifications, so that I actually have to go into the app to see if I have new email. That was also helpful, because I don't feel like I have to read comments as soon as I see the notification. Removing the anonymous comment option and disabling the Gmail notifications took away about 50% of my anxiety, which was a great start.

It wasn't until early this year, when I had a big breakthrough in therapy, was diagnosed with bipolar, and started the correct medication that I finally got to the point where I just don't care. When I've gotten mean comments or emails, I've actually been able to laugh about them, make fun of them, and sometimes I even respond to them. Usually with sarcasm.

This time, I am not just convincing myself I don't care. I truly don't give a shit what people think about me! And you know what? That is the greatest feeling. I love that I can be myself, write what I want to write, make myself vulnerable, and never second guess the person I am.

I AM kind, sensitive, sympathetic/empathetic, and generous. I am also a good listener. I treat people with respect. I try to be the best role model I can for my boys. I am honest. I care so much about my friends and family and would do just about anything for them. I am smart. I love to teach people things that I know well. I'm a good running coach. I eat junk food, and I'm not at all sorry about it. I'm thoughtful and enjoy doing things that will make others happy. I've always been a very creative person, too.

I mess up sometimes, but so does everybody. I forget things, like birthdays, once in a while--but I am sincere when I apologize for it. I might say something offensive or inappropriate now and then, but I never say things with the intention of actually hurting people with my words. Sometimes I'm too ambitious and don't follow through with things I've said I will do--I guess I'll just blame that one on bipolar disorder, haha. My diet is atrocious and I eat too many grapes--but if that's the worst thing about me, then I'm pretty proud.

Basically diabetes in a bowl

The reason I took so long to write this post is because I knew it would make me even more vulnerable--probably my most vulnerable. I thought that when the "haters" would read about how the comments caused me so much anxiety, they would be "winning" and getting what they were after. I didn't want to give them the satisfaction, so I chose not to say anything at all. And I was afraid of the feedback I would get, honestly!

By posting this today, I am declaring that I am ME, and I'm done trying to always portray a better version of me. I am fine just the way I am, and I am happy with who I am, even with my flaws. Maybe that makes me a smug c**t (haha! I couldn't resist), but I can rest easy and be thankful that I am not filled with so much hate that I try to hurt other people when they are making themselves vulnerable.

I am filled with admiration for people who are comfortable enough to be themselves, whether they "fit in" or not. I feel like a huge weight has been lifted from my shoulders since I finally stopped trying to change everything about me to please other people. The only thing I'm sorry for is that I wasted so much of my time and energy feeling anxious about what people were going to say about me.

When I started losing weight eight years ago, I never EVER imagined that I would actually reach my goal weight (let alone maintain it). And just like then, I never EVER imagined that I would one day feel comfortable with being my true, imperfect self. It's taken me 35 years to get to this point, but I can express with 100% certainty that it was worth it.



(And to those of you that have left kind and/or respectful comments on my blog--whether regularly or just once-- thank you! If not for those comments, I certainly would have quit blogging when I went through such a rough time. I can't even count the number of times that a particular comment has made my day or filled me with joy somehow. I read and appreciate every single one of them. xo)

(Oh, and since I'm sure someone will mention it... I am currently reading "The Gifts of Imperfection" by Brene Brown. I am loving it! And I plan to write a review when I'm done with it.)

68 comments:

  1. This makes me so angry that you had to deal with such rude people! I knew you had your handful of disagreements in the comments (some of them I saw first hand and was ready to go into battle for you haha) but I had no idea there was a hate site for bloggers!! People like that need to look deep inside themselves to figure out what their own personal issue is because anybody with common decency and respect for others is not going to do that. I've loved reading your story through the years! You've got me through some tough times of my own by just relating to what you have to say. I'll always appreciate when you take the time to blog for us! I enjoy it so much!

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    1. Thank you, Amanda! It's funny--there are certain people who give me a sense of relief when I see that "So-and-so left a comment on your blog...". And you are one of them! You've always been so kind. I never did understand (nor will I) why people continue to read if they dislike me. It's such a waste of valuable time!

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  2. I love your declaration!! Own that, girl. I've been a "silent reader" for years and do lots of women's emotional work through an organization that puts on retreats called Women Revealed and that work has, like you said, taught me to declare WHO I REALLY AM. And be okay with it! remember that 99% of us think you are awesome and that other 1% can shove it ��. ((And, honestly, usually it's a self-insecurity that is coming out on others... the internet is a "safe" place for people to say things that they would NEVER say to someone's face.))

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    1. Thank you, Holly! I'm so happy that you are okay with who you are--it makes a world of difference, doesn't it? :) What you said about the "safe" place reminds me of a quote that I just saw on Pinterest: "Haters are like crickets. Crickets make a lot of noise; you hear them, but can't see them. Then right when you walk by them, they're quiet." Haha, I love it!

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  3. What she said! πŸ‘†πŸΌπŸ‘

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  4. Thank you for writing this post! I would have had no idea people could be so nuts. Your little captions on your photos are almost hilarious if not for how awful it is that people bother to stop and make such mean, ridiculous, unnecessary comments.

    Thank you very much for continuing to blog even though it means putting yourself out there to some terrible people. I love reading your blog and I know there's lots of other people like me glad we're not missing out.

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  5. For the most part I love the growth of social media over the past 10, 15 years. I love being able to follow my friends and family on their facebook pages and keep up with what they're doing. I remember when I was a kid, and grandparents or aunts and uncles lived a distance away. I felt like I hardly knew them. Now I feel close to friends and family members that I only see once every few years. I also really enjoy posting pictures of what I'm up to so others can keep up with what we're doing.

    But on the negative side, people seem to feel so much freer to be so MEAN. I see it a lot on different political posts that pop up on facebook. I will read the article and then some of the comments....I am always amazed at the horrible namecalling and worse that people will write - sometimes people I even know in real life. People that I consider to be kind, good people, and they're doing the same thing. It's something about the anonymous nature of it - even when they are doing it under their name - they know that 99% of the people who read the comments will have no idea who they are. It frees up people to say such cruel things that they would never dream of saying face to face to someone.

    I am glad that you didn't let people like this stop you from blogging. We are all trying to be the best people we can be, and not one of us is perfect. Hopefully someday we will become a society of people supporting each other and celebrating our differences, instead of attacking someone because they think or act a little differently than we do.

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  6. I am sorry there are jerks who made it tough for you - but so, so happy that you perservered. The 99% are right - you are great and that is why we follow and read. Your insights have helped me be a better me - you don't see that gift you give from your side of the screen but I would bet I'm not the only one. Thank you for not caving to the 1%.

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  7. Katie, I am not sure if I have ever left a comment before, but I have been reading your blog for years. Like before Blogger. I have always found you to be a great writer and a genuinely nice person. I am not sure why some people feel like they have to tear someone down to make themselves feel better. But know that I for one would be very sad if you stopped blogging.

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  8. Well I've always loved you...since our open diary days! Xoxo

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  9. From one of us many positive commenters, you are so welcome Katie. LOL!! I have followed you almost since Day 1, since you and I started our weight loss journeys abut the same time, you in August (I believe) and me in Dec. of 2009. You have done a better job of maintaining than me, but I won't hold THAT against you! I love reading the mundane details of your family life as well as the extremely thought-provoking ideas you present abut weight loss, mental health and today....kindness.

    With the awful carnage in Las Vegas....we need to remember there were 22,000 people at that concert who were not EVIL that night, many of whom were true heroes. Only ONE person can cause so much destruction, grief, and hate. I'm glad you now realize that so many of us out here love you, and send only encouraging comments, and that's it's not worth your time to worry about those who, for some reason, are filled with hate and judgement, which I'm guessing is rooted in jealousy for what you have accomplished.

    As ocdrunner said above, "Thanks for persevering," because you cannot know how much motivation and inspiration your blog has provided to so many of us who are struggling. Keep it up Katie!!

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  11. "By posting this today, I am declaring that I am ME, and I'm done trying to always portray a better version of me. I am fine just the way I am, and I am happy with who I am, even with my flaws."

    I think you're pretty awesome and that mean people suck! I'm sorry you've had to deal with so many because of your blog. You keep on rockin with your bad self and just keep being happy with who you are! :)

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  12. I will never understand what others gain by being mean to people they don't even know, although I sort of understand how they could feel like they know you with how open and honest you are. Sometimes I feel a bit of a "gawker" reading your blog since I don't know you, but I find your story and dedication to yourself and your passions so inspirational and look forward to reading what you have to say each day. Thanks!

    -Jem

    (PS - I deleted my first post, as I discovered that the word voyeur is specifically sexual - which I didn't know, and certainly didn't mean!:) )

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  13. YESSS!!! I love this post! You're blog has literally changed my life, over the course of the past few years. You've inspired me to do so much more than I ever thought I could because you're just like the rest of us. Not a celebrity, just a ordinary person who chose to do something, believed in herself, and rose to the occasion. Congrats to you for realizing that there will always be haters who are gonna hate and it doesn't really matter at all! For every one jerk out there, you have many more readers who love hearing what you have to say and are genuinely inspired by your accomplishments.

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    1. I also have to say I kinda felt like ending my post with the hashtag #SMUGC**TSRULE ������

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    2. This literally made me snort out loud!

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  14. Love the post Katie!! Having the pleasure to have met you in person, you really are so honest and open with your blog. Hell I even thought the Mini Meet Up would be awkward, but nope! You are just as you portray yourself and that is amazing. NOt to mention how you bring strangers together to form friendships, and the world certainly needs more of that! Also, I no longer refer to your blog as "this blog I read". Now it's "I have this friend who blogs" lol! Hope that's ok :) You are awesome, your blog is awesome, and everyone else can shove it!!

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  15. Great post! I hope you know you will always get positive vibes from me! F*$k those trolls and know that you ARE better than them! Keep that smug smile on your face πŸ˜‰

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  16. Obviously the people that have the time to post mean comments are very unhappy people and have nothing better to do. I know it's hard, but instead of taking it personally, they need to be pitied.

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  17. I had to laugh out loud at your picture of your bowl of grapes with the caption -- thanks for that!

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  18. I have been reading your blog off and on for several years. In fact it pretty much the only blog I read these days! I started reading looking for inspiration on losing weight. I stayed because you are the most authentic blogger I have ever read. I absolutely love that you are not just a stay at home mom. But that you are an amazing stay at home mom! That's a huge sacrifice! A gift to your family! I can't lie...Jerry's notes are the best thing ever! I love that you thrift shop, I love that you eat real food. I love that you serve people. I can't remember his name but there was a friend of your who was an older special needs man...when you blogged about his passing I cried. Today I just want to say how much good you bring to the world. This post here today will encourage others so much! I have a couple family members who also have been diagnosed bipolar. You are simply amazing! To me you have made the world happier! Thank you for sharing!

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  19. I think I know which hate site you're talking about because a friend of mine mentioned it, and when I checked it out one day I was in disbelief at how childish and bullyish it was. And some of the people posting these horrible things must have children, which makes me cringe. I think people who hide behind their computers to make fun of others must be really unhappy with themselves. To take that much time to spew hate seems exhausting and miserable. What a horrible way to live. I love your blog and thanks for your honesty!

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    1. I know, I've never heard of that hate site before this post, and I went to just see what it was all about. Wow. I will never understand how people can get enjoyment out of cutting people down, or just being cruel and hateful. Just to do it. And they say there's something wrong with another person??? Wow - go look in the mirror.

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  20. I am so glad you had the courage to write this post. I think the horrible things people say about others reflects more on them than the person they are trying to defame. I am so glad for you to feel 100% authentic and to share your authenticity with us all so freely. Keep up the great work girl! You're changing the world in your own way for the better by spreading this awareness of bullying in a sense and doing so authentically!

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  21. don't let anyone else dull your shine!

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  22. Katie, I agree it's amazing that people can be so hateful. I've always wondered how bloggers deal with the hate comments/spam they must get, because I think it must be impossible to avoid. Thank you for sharing your feelings and experiences about them. You are so strong!

    I have always appreciated your honesty in your posts. And actually, I feel like you have been educating me slowly about mental health issues, which has made me much more understanding and empathetic to others, so thank you very much!

    By the way, your sarcastic captions to your pictures in this post are hilarious. Sheesh, the amazing things that people think.

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  23. Not sure if I've ever commented or not, but I've been reading for quite a while now. FUCK THOSE PEOPLE! Just remember that people who have to put others down to make themselves feel better are sad, lonely, people. They are saying nasty stuff to you because it makes them feel better about themselves. Feel sorry for them, cause they are miserable. But don't let them allow you to feel miserable about yourself!

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  24. Katie, I have read your blog for so many years and it never occurred to me that people would be hateful. I have to say though, the "smug c**t" comment is the funniest thing I have read all day. Anyone who has read your writing for a second knows how laughable that is. :)

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  25. I think you are amazing. I had never "followed" a blog before I started reading this one (and still don't actually) and I've read yours for probably almost six years or so now. You are kind, honest, genuine and just a great inspiration. Thank you for being you and posting even when you didn't know if you wanted to. Some people can be so mean and hurtful, but it's people like you that prove that some people are just awesome! <3

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  26. I will never understand how someone can get satisfaction out of being mean to someone else. I grew up being teased badly for my weight, and at some point I decided to feel sorry for the ones that were so mean to me. I figured they must be missing something in their lives to get satisfaction out of hurting others. It's easy to see that you're a kind hearted person, I'm glad that you've been able to remove the anxiety of those people from your life.

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  27. I never understood hate sites. Why waste your energy picking apart other people? Who wants to be miserable all the damn time? Obviously insecure people who would rather find fault in others than do the necessary work on themselves. I am SO glad you no longer care. I never wanted to share my writing with people either because it is so personal - it’s part of you, so having it dissected and ridiculed is a terrifying thought. You are brave!! I seldom comment but I think you are awesome and have loved reading your blog for years now. That’s all, lol. Keep being awesome. :)

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  28. Katie,
    I often use the quote
    “What other people think of me is none of my business.”
    What freedom to know we can be ourselves and be free!

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  29. Hi Katie - Thank you for today's post and all the others you've done over the years. It takes courage to put yourself out there and expose your personal thoughts and experiences. Hell - some of us won't even write a brief comment for fear of what the response will be! Having lived a long time before the internet was invented, I've seen both the gift and the horror it can be. I believe it has allowed many in our society to become more confrontational, mean, abusive,etc. People find the courage to say inappropriate things they would never say in person! I'm sorry that you've had to deal with the bad side of the internet, but know that you have received many of the gifts the internet has to give AND you have been a gift yourself. Thank you.

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  30. Oh Mama....it hurts me so bad that you let the bottom feeders of this world affect you that much :( Anyone that hides behind "anonymous" is a true coward. The worst version of a coward. Im glad you have not stopped "posting" You never know the positive effect your words have on someone :) you just continue being you and let the haters of this world wallow in their own self hatred. They are truly unhappy ppl.

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  31. I really can't wrap my mind around why people go out of their way to hurt others intentionally. Anyway, I think you seem like a very nice genuine person who's not perfect....who wants to be perfect anyway. My kids call me weird....I'm happy with weird...for me weird=interesting. Keep doing your thing!

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  32. I'm so glad this came up on my feed today. I needed to read this. Thank you for inspiring me as always.

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  33. So happy to read this. F the haters, you do you. We love you. You rock. Can't wait to hear your thoughts on the book, I want to read it too. :) Hugs from Renee in Chicago.

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  34. Oh, today's world is an interesting one. People are fueled by EVERYTHING...good, bad, black, white, organic, sugar, exercise or lazy.....I mean the list could literally go to INFINITY and BEYOND....(as Buzz would put it) but, as "buzzed" words are they are words and once written/said any body and every body want to put "their" spin on those words to change them into something sad, bad, corrupt, illegal, wrong, right or ...dare I say...racist.

    I have never been one to think before I speak but I am actually doing that now....and boy I say a lot less these days. ;-(

    Take care and as you know...the haters are always gonna hate. Just keep being you!

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  35. As always, Katie, I am super proud of you!! Thank you for sharing your heart & being vulnerable. I am so glad that you have come to a place of freedom about this. I have been off of facebook for almost a year now, and I really don't miss it. I had been thinking about getting off it for a while, and then I got a mean-spirited comment on a post (from a former high school teacher of mine, of all people!). When I got so upset about this comment, I thought-this is not healthy for me. Yours is the only blog I follow, and I so appreciate the time that you take away from your family, and other things, to write. By the way, I am loving your thrifty posts, and am proud of you and Jerry for the financial progress you are making. Keep on being your sweet self, girl! :)

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  36. I understand how you felt. I ran across a hate blog for a message board that I frequent. My screen name was mentioned, and it was so nasty that it took my breath away. Fortunately, I didn't have to ever go back, but I just couldn't believe that people would publish such awful comments about strangers on a very benign message board. I don't understand it at all, except it certainly says more about them than about me (or you.)
    I've been reading your blog for about four years now, and I have to say that the positive changes in your life have just been amazing. And it's all due to you. Keep at it, I think you're incredible.

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  38. Katie - I've been reading your blog for years (and ran under your bib for Ragnar Cape Cod a few years ago). I love your writing and your bravery and your resilience. Keep it up, girl. There's love for you in Boston.

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  40. I'm sorry that your open, honest post got any hateful comments. I appreciate your blog and hope you keep it up!

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  41. What assholes! Your blog is so damn in controversial I don't understand how the EFF anyone could even come up with anything to flipping criticize or WTF PUT ON A HATE SITE?! WTH?!?!?

    This is why bloggers like Nienie dialogues and CJane Kendrick have their comments totally disabled. Nienie was disabled in a flipping plane crash and fire but because she's LDS and won a lawsuit everyone and their brother has come out of the woodwork to criticize. Whatever.

    I've followed you since I was fat. I would still be fat if I hadn't found your blog. You were so normal and practical and if you hadn't regained and struggled and NOTMALIZED THE STRUGGLE I wouldn't have been able to normalize it for myself too. I'm here because of you! I hit a healthy weight again a couple weeks ago after struggling the last 5-6 months. Nailed it! That's the support system of the online community you and Hungry Runner Girl and Himgry Twenties- all of you- created for me!

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  42. I absolutely love this post! I'm always amazed at people who put so much energy into being mean. When I first discovered the blogging world I was shocked at how trolls act. It's so far out of my realm of understanding that I can't even try to wrap my brain around it. You keep being you. I'm a pretty opinionated person and I don't think I've ever found a single thing that you write about to be controversial - or maybe I just agree with you on every topic? HA!

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  43. People are so ugly. I am sorry that you have been hurt by these terrible people. I am a new reader to your blog and I love it. Thanks for pushing through, even when others were nasty.

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  44. Internet trolls suck, and thank goodness you are finally feeling good enough to not let them affect you. It makes me think of the bit that one of the late night talk shows does (I can't remember which one) where celebrities read in a serious voice some of the most outrageous hate tweets about them. It usually makes them laugh, and it is pretty funny- the only losers are mean trolls who are themselves insecure so they lash out. I love your blog, it is so relatable for me on so many issues, and I feel like you are sort of a friend even though we have never met. Brava, and carry on! <3

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  45. I could not love this post anymore than I do!! You are an amazing and strong person. Keep writing and being unapologetically you!

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  46. You're fabulous. I'm sorry people have been such asses, and I'm glad you are coming to this point. Also, you eat too many grapes...see, I can't even type that without snorting.

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  47. Yay, Katie! So glad the trolls can’t get to you anymore.

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  48. Everyone else has already said all the things I was thinking, so I will just offer you a virtual “high five” and add that there are just too many important things in life to worry about those who find fault like there’s a reward for it.

    Enjoy the freedom of not caring!! :)

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  49. Katie, thank you for sharing and being real with us despite the negative comments. I am thankful you have continued on. I love your funny captions in the pics in this post - so great (and funny). You are a gem!

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  50. Some people find pleasure in making fun of other people, but it's a horrible way to live life and and they must be truly miserable people that they need to degrade someone else. It saddens me to know that you suffered for so many years because people with low self-esteem felt the need to bash you. I don't always agree with everything I read everywhere, but I never feel the need to hate on anyone because our opinions don't aline. I am so glad you have decided to rid as much of it as possible from your life and no longer care what people think, because they aren't worth a second thought. Your blog is awesome and that's why so many of us have been around for so long!

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  51. Once again, you amaze me with your openness and honesty. I'm so sorry you have had to go through this experience. I will never understand why people feel the need to be so mean. You have "won" by continuing to be true to yourself and with your message of hope and positivity! Thank you!

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  52. Thank you for continuing to write your blog despite the "haters". Count me as another vote in the "positive" column - I've been reading your blog for a couple of years and I find your posts interesting and frequently insightful.

    If people respond to your blog in a disrespectful or excessively negative fashion, the problem is clearly with them. Nobody is making them read!

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  53. For what it's worth, I started following three years ago when I first started trying to loose weight and run! I had walked/ran a half-marathon which was a HUGE goal and I connected with you that you also walked one BEFORE you lost the weight...I connected with the girl in that before picture who was trying...and I felt inspired by the 'after' who was happy with the healthier lifestyle! I discovered runners world from you AND even traveled from Indiana to Pennsylvania with my sister for the Runners World 5K where I FINALLY got my 5K under forty minutes (39:55!!) even though Inaccidentally stopped at the wrong finish line. :) I sent an email about that a few years ago!! Anyhow, this weekend I not only beat my best 5K time (I'm down to 34:55 now!!!) but I also ran my first 10K without walking...I never thought I could run a whole three miles let alone six...or 6.2! And I've lost forty pounds along the way and still have forty to go :) Having never met you I am thankful that God brought me to a blog that included running and cookies...a blog after my own heart!! HE made you awesome :)

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  54. Good for you! I've been a reader off and on for years and have always loved learning from you and being motivated by your truth and I've been happy many times to discover that we are a lot alike. I'm so glad you're at a new place in life where you can let go of the nastiness of others. It's what's wrong with them, not you. That's always the case, isn't it?

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  55. I have always looked up to you and admired how you lost weight and maintaine dit! I have just few vanity pounds to lose and God I can't do it!
    Love you for the help and motivation you have given over the years!

    Infact just today I wrote a blog post where your name tops #bestfitnessbloggers!
    I did tag you in a tweet too!

    More power to you! Hope I can be proud one day too:)

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  56. You are effing amazing and ridiculously inspiring. Thank you for who you are, badass lady, and thank you for refusing to edit your fabulous self for a few constipated haters. Now I want a shirt that says, "Smug C**t."

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  57. I am so sorry you had/have to deal with this kind of crap. i'm pretty sure I know what site your talking about. I visited it once and never went back. The women (and men) on there are some of the most negative and immature people I have ever witnessed. Your site has given me so much encouragement as I make my way through my own diet. It stinks that others choose not to look at the positive thoughts you bring or take the time to encourage. I hope you never give up! You have more love than hate for you and your thougthful insights.

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  58. I miss reading you in OD format, things changed once you got your blog here. :(

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  59. I had a blog for a number of years and ran a community event that ended up getting me a vicious, hateful email. Even though I knew what she said wasn't true, it planted doubts in my mind. I check to see how she is doing occasionally, because even though she was a complete asshole to me, I don't hate her. I do, though, wish she would place a pad sticky-side up just once while on her period.

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  60. I am glad you don't give a shit anymore! ; ) You are writing for those that listen- not for those that judge!

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I'd love to hear from you! I read all of my comments, and if you have a question, I do my best to respond; sometimes, however, I get busy and forget to go back to reply, so if it's important, just email me! :)