Posted by : Sherri Cornelius Thursday, December 10, 2009

As you can see, I've changed things around a bit. I removed the landing page so my blog is right up front, added a bio page, and added an RSS feed at the top of the sidebar. The bio is just an old one I had lying around, but as it appeared I would never write a new one I figured it was better than nothing. I dislike those things so much.

Have you ever been blocked by someone in your social media travels? Isn't it the strangest feeling? When a simple "Please don't contact me anymore" would suffice, being blocked seems like overkill. I don't want to be where I'm not wanted, but I'm sort of dense sometimes, I guess. Of course, I've done it to strangers who make me uncomfortable, so when it happens to me I wonder what I've done wrong. Darcknyt had a similar experience on Twitter, but I think the consensus on his unexplained blockage was that it was a mistake.  It's even weirder and more hurtful when it's somebody you care about, even if you know why it happened, but worse when you don't.

Way back in '99, before this world of pseudo-relationships and e-friendships intruded on my daily life, I worked at a Wrangler jeans factory with a girl named Julie. She was Kickapoo Indian and taught me how to say things in Kickapoo, to the amusement of her Indian friends. She told me her stories and I told her mine, and we were, I thought, good friends for a couple of years. You know, not that we called each other outside of work, but a good friend nonetheless. I loved her and would have been open to an outside friendship.

One day, we were laughing and ribbing each other while the other girls on the line wished we would shut up and work. This was long ago so I don't remember how it started, but I joked, "Well then I just won't talk to you for the rest of the day," or , "Don't talk to me anymore," or something like that. So she didn't talk to me the rest of the day. I thought it was a joke. The next morning I said hi to her, and she looked at me and went back to tacking those pockets without a word. I said, "Oh, you're still not talking, huh?" Nothing. I still wasn't sure she wasn't still joking around, so I let her be silent. As the days passed, it was clear she was not going to come around.

Julie and I worked together for a while after that, at least many months, probably a year, maybe two, and she never spoke to me again. I had been blocked.

I moved on, but it still haunts me. Did she think I was serious? Was it a pride thing? I never had the chance to explain myself or apologize, because such words bounced off her. So I guess we weren't friends after all, because wouldn't a friend give another friend a chance to explain? Wouldn't a friend lower the wall of hurt or pride or whatever for a moment, at least entertain the possibility that a misunderstanding had occurred? I don't know. Maybe I don't even know what friendship is. Do you?

{ 8 comments... read them below or Comment }

  1. wow, and here I've been wishing I could block a certain someone (no, not you my dear) from reading my blog, because knowing they read it has this toxic affect on my creative expression, so much so that I'm thinking of stopping blogging all together.
    I have been thinking a lot about friendship too. How my in-person friends seem to ignore my online presence, and how I would like to find friends that my husband and I can both be friends with, and how is it that I can feel closer to someone I've never met in person than to many people in my own family.
    It sounds like Julie had a major problem with being honest with her feelings. I'm sorry you had to go through that.
    p.s. how do you know you've ben blocked?

  2. Nope, I sure don't. Every time I think I have it nailed down, something moves into my sphere of influence and destroys the track of my train of thought.

    I know how weird it is to have something you've said in jest taken so far out of what you meant there's irreparable damage done to a relationship. I've been blacklisted from an employer because of it. Someone misunderstood or chose to misunderstand something I meant in a spirit of jocularity and took it as far as necessary to see me escorted from the building.

    So yeah, it's happened on more than one front, in virtual and actual reality to me. But I know simple communication would solve most of those issues.

    There are two sides of every conversation: Presentation and perception. We can only control one of those and have no way to control the other. I do my best to control whichever side of it I'm on but the perception of my presentation is where I get into the most trouble.

    And here I have the audacity to call myself a writer. Ha. That's laughable.

    Don't worry about it too much, sweetie. You can only do what you can do and you cannot control the other person in any situation.

  3. Oh man! This hurts me. I had a friend of nearly 30 years do something similar to me.

    That sense of bafflement is almost mind-boggling, isn't it?

    I think modern day blocking is like the old days of slamming down the phone, or writing "return to sender" on a letter.

    I'm sorry you're trying to deal with this. Has someone blocked you recently?

  4. Yeah, but it'll be fine. It's all pretty silly. Just makes me feel weird that I'm viewed as a toxic person. :)

  5. You are not a toxic person.

    I think playing those kind of games is silly and immature and manipulative.

    Not playing along doesn't make you toxic sweetie, it makes you an adult. *hugs*

  6. Well, just recently I broke up with a friend. But I wrote her and explained how I felt. She said fine and that was that.

    But I did have a friend named Julie cut me off. To this day I don't know why, and we used to talk on the phone almost every day. We'd just call to say one thing, "Hey, I have to tell you this..."

    Then she stopped. That was it.

    You are not toxic. People have issues and you can't control what filters people look through.

    I'm glad I know you though. You're awesome.

  7. Girl, you're too sweet. I'm glad I know you, too. And what is it with Julies? lol


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