It used to be the shared logic that posting any personal details online meant that you’d be stalked, robbed and murdered. Over the years, I’ve carefully crept in and out of various parts of the internet under various levels of anonymity. From pseudonyms to my full name, from catfish-level identity hiding to “Here I am, y’all”, I’ve tried it all.
And honestly? I’m happiest as an oversharer.
I have shared every part of myself but my name, city and work to a group of people and felt more connected than with people who see me every day. I have hidden all the details but the bare, bald truth, and felt powerfully liberated and supported. I have posted writing into the void and it was reciprocated with devastating honesty, shared passion and tears.
I like the internet. Not faced with staring into one another’s eyes, I think we are better able to say the things we’re embarrassed to say aloud. We’re emboldened to have opinions and stand behind them. For better or worse, we say things that we would not say over lunch. While we’ve seen a lot of examples of how that can be very bad (the comments section of any major news site, for example), it can also be very amazing.