So, there have been lots of posts about the blog-pocalypse. I don't mean to make light of the situation. It really seems like the issues raised by Mel regarding the creation of the PAIL Blogroll have caused lots of underlying feelings about people's sense of inclusion or exclusion in the infertile-blogging world to bubble to the surface. Many people are wondering whether the community can/will recover from some of the accusations and comments made on this topic. Some are even threatening to stop blogging or remove their blogs from both blogrolls (a little extreme in my opinion).
Let me tell you right away that I feel relatively emotionally detached from
the core of the argument. I don't necessarily feel excluded from PAIL or
the parenting after IF section of the SQ Blogroll,
because at this point in my journey I honestly feel like it has nothing
to do with me. Although many respected and wonderful mommy bloggers are
members of both PAIL and SQ, I do not read many blogs that focus solely on
parenting after IF. I do read a few that are written by moms, but their
blogs tend to include their children in their lives as a backdrop,
instead of writing about specific parenting issues. I am a relatively new
blogger TTC #1, so most of the blogs I read are also about those who are TTC #1 with
me, or perhaps are recently pregnant. That being said, I do have an interest in this argument, but from a different perspective.
I don't think it matters at this point whether people believe PAIL should exist or not. It's there. It's growing. I doubt it is going anywhere, and I sure as hell hope Mel never even considers the possibility of shutting down Stirrup Queens. I feel a huge amount of gratitude to Mel, as SQ was my gateway into the world of blogging and continues to be completely inspirational to me. Her perspective on the duplication of work between PAIL and SQ, as well as her protectiveness of ICLW (her invention) seem justified to me. However, I do believe the two blogrolls can and will have to co-exist. This doesn't have to be as divisive of an issue as it feels right now. It can actually be thought of in a much more positive light.
My inner Pollyanna tells me that this community will heal. Here's why.
Both Mel and Elphaba (PAIL's founder) have the same goal. The goal is to maintain an environment of support, love, inclusiveness, and expression for women at some point in their infertility journey. They are both being generous enough to provide a space where like-minded women can connect with each other. The intentions on both sides seem to me to be genuine.
I also believe that sometimes it takes one issue to bring another to light. In this case, the existence of a separate blogroll brought up all kinds of suppressed anger and hurt about how free people feel to blog about their pregnancies and parenting after IF and how bloggers still trying to TTC sometimes abandon PAIL blogs.
Did anyone else see the parallel between this argument and the fights you have in a marriage? You know, the ones where someone forgets to buy something at the grocery store and it turns into an argument about how you never have sex anymore and feel unloved? In those arguments, you usually end up having a long talk (or two, or three) and work through it, because your love for each other outshines the argument. It doesn't mean that anyone should be censored or feel fear of saying what they feel. It just means they need to be open to hearing the other side as well. There was simply some feelings of resentment that needed to be confronted before moving on.
My gut says that the same will happen in this community. People definitely got feelings hurt and may feel a little differently about each other. But, the closeness and emotional connectedness around these parts is too strong to just throw in the towel. There might be a little cold shoulder for a while, or even a period of separation, but in the end, we'll be watching The Walking Dead on the couch together again in no time.