The Bearded Iris

A Recalcitrant Wife and Mother Tells All

And that’s why I finally took The Mom Pledge.

Funny story: about a year ago, I came across a pretty little button on someone’s blog that piqued my interest.

BWS tips buttonI clicked on it and read all about the author’s campaign to end Internet bullying, particularly “mom-on-mom” aggression.

And I thought to myself, “Huh. That’s odd. I’ve never seen anything even remotely redolent of online bullying, particularly by women against other women.”

Then it hit me like a sock full of quarters, “Oh my God…is she talking about ME? I am pretty snarky sometimes. OH SHIT. Am I a cyber bully?”

I immediately emailed the author, Elizabeth Flora Ross, and asked her to please tell me more about it.

Elizabeth kindly explained that she was particularly concerned with:

“women who attack specific individuals…by leaving hateful comments repeatedly on a person’s blog…by writing nasty posts on their own blogs specifically aimed at that individual, and by saying bad things about that person on social media sites. It happens a lot. I see it all the time.”

And I wrote back, “That’s shocking!” and “Oh phew, that’s not me!” and “Thank you for the information!” But I never did anything further about it; never took “The Mom Pledge,” never even gave it another thought.

As many of you know, last week my satirical blog post about Bucket Head and the gum ball machine was viciously attacked by a small and particularly hateful group of anonymous commenters. 

It was eerily reminiscent of a (virtual) home invasion.

They crashed into our little community and verbally assaulted me, my parenting, my children, and even my readers. One of them even wished us bodily harm.

The whole experience was rather unsettling and caused me to feel a wide range of complex emotions.

At first I was like, “Huh?”

confused face

And then I was like, “Oh-Em-Gee.”

Come Bobo, they're being meanies.

 

And then I was all, “Oh no she DI-int!”

You should learn to take a joke...

And now I’m just like, “Ha!”

Got trolled; page views through the roof. Success!

I’m just saying.

So where were we? Oh yes, Internet bullying.

I recognize that publicly sharing this blog puts me in a vulnerable position. It’s like hosting an Open House every day and not knowing who might walk through my door. And perhaps I’m at greater risk than some because of my colorful vocabulary and willingness to “tell all.”

But that doesn’t give anyone the right to disrespect me. Ever. 

This particular pack of attackers chose to check their manners at the door and “crap all over my house.” Not okay.

Many of you who jumped to my defense here and on Twitter, Facebook, and your own beautiful blog posts (here and here) were as stunned as I was. Your support was incredibly comforting to me. Thank you.

Several of you applauded me for ignoring the nastier comments and thus “not feeding the trolls.”

Interestingly, some of these attackers did not take kindly to being called “trolls,” even though their actions were clearly in line with the Urban Dictionary definition of a troll.

Unwelcome, offensive, stupid or abusive commenter on a blog, chat room, user group or BBS.

Silly me, I didn’t even know what an Internet troll was before last week. But now I do, and I feel compelled to officially announce my stance on this issue:

Any questions?

No, I didn’t think so.

It’s really quite simple. No matter what your background, race, religion, age, gender, interests, or politics…just be nice.

Or like I say to the ladies at my church potlucks, if you don’t like what I’m cookin’, don’t fucking eat it. 

Love thy neighbor.

Now, for you citizens of the Internet with your own blogs, I urge you to learn from my mistakes. Take action NOW. Don’t sit back and think “Oh, that will never happen to me.”

It can, and it might. It’s the nature of the Internet.

If I had taken The Mom Pledge a year ago, I would have been more prepared for how to deal with this issue. I would have immediately recognized the difference between a dissenter and a bully. And I would have known my rights and how I should react (by immediately deleting such comments and not giving attackers a platform for their hatred).

I’m proud to say I’ve finally taken the pledge, better late than never, and I encourage you to do the same.

Be prepared. Know your rights. Take the pledge. 

“The internet provides an unprecedented opportunity for women to connect. What we should be doing is celebrating the joys of motherhood together and supporting one another through the challenges. This is the environment we hope to create. Take the Pledge today and join us!  ~ Elizabeth Flora Ross

Together we are strong,

-Iris

© Copyright 2012, The Bearded Iris. Be nice.

 

77 Comments

  1. Very well said, Iris. I hate how you were blindsided, but I’m super excited you’ve found the comment delete button. It was an honor to come to your defense as a mother and as a mother whose children have been on the wrong end of a bully stick. Is there a right end of a bully stick? I doubt it. Anyway, thanks for reminding your readers we don’t have to hide from mean people on our own blogs. And, hell yeah, trolls: page views, so thanks for the free pub.

  2. YES ma’am! That whole thing was nuts, I tell ya.
    I had an incident several years ago, after expressing an opinion about a controversial topic, and I even prefaced it with saying it was my opinion and I was not trying to change anyone’s mind…but it got nasty with name calling and even carried over into other blogs where I was mocked and picked to pieces and frankly, IT HURT. It also made me stop having public opinions about controversial subjects, which I hate because IT’S NOT FAIR.

  3. Vintagethrifty1

    February 1, 2012 at 4:31 pm

    People were mean to you about that post??? Why? I was laughing my ass off. Some people need to get the stick out of their ass.

  4. Can I get the “Take a joke, whore” graphic in a card for my MIL?

  5. Right on! No one comes to Iris’ house and shits on the carpet. NO ONE. Well… the dog might do it…. but he may have eaten a green alien or something… or it might not be actual shit at all… but I digress….
    Like Erica said… it was an honor to come to your defense. We’ve got your back when the mean girls strike.

    (I just realized that the green alien in turdcarbonite was down below!)

  6. @ Vintagethrifty1: totally thought the same thing.

    @Iris : F-ing judgemental a-holes! That post (and all your other posts) are friggin’ hilarious. LOVE IT!!!!

    @those of you who were the mean or are going to be mean SOBs: if you dont like it, there’s the back button, use it b****!!!

  7. Wow. Sound like I missed some serious trolling. Ugh. I used to think that anyone had the right to say their bit, but nope. That opinion has changed over the years. It’s YOUR blog. There is no reason you should ever allow someone to post their nastiness on it.

    Good call, girlfriend. I may not always agree with ya, but I sure do laugh with you most of the time! Have an awesome troll-free day!

  8. i almost left a comment (7-8 times) on the gumball post but never could get it quite right. ideas like, posting the lyrics to janet jackson’s “nasty”, or saying the trolls must be ugly. then i thought, WWMDD? (what would michelle duggar do?). and i didn’t know.
    i still feel a tug to say: iris is a best friend to me in real life and reading those mean spirited comments made me sad. Their thoughts weren’t funny… nor were they true.

    • I’m only an internet bloggy friend, and I was sad about the comments too. People are entitled to their opinions, but I can’t stand reading hateful bashing.

      Also, I laughed so freakin hard at that WWMDD comment. hahaha I’ve got to start using that!!!

  9. nice is my middle name.
    Actually it’s Michael. Not sure why I lied to be honest….

  10. Oh, Iris. I’m so sorry to learn of your experience. It happens far too often, and it’s just.not.right! It is also high time we stood up together and said, “No more!” I’m so glad you have taken The Mom Pledge and joined our community. We’re proud to have you!

  11. Oh and for the record, I thought that post was HILARIOUS! I could totally relate, and it brought me a much needed laugh. I’m a new fan and will be coming back for more or your stuff, girl!

  12. A friend emailed a link to one of your posts about 6 months ago and I’ve been lurking and snickering ever since. I admit that I never respond because with two toddlers I’m much too busy dreaming about getting drunk to type up a coherent post. When I read the ducky post last week I laughed my butt off and then forwarded it to all my friends. So imagine my shock and dismay to hear that you’ve been attacked over it! Keep on laughing at the world and ignore the trolls who want to rain on your parade. Any judging twit who thinks they can do better can borrow my 3 year old for an afternoon. She’s figured out she doesn’t need the keys to padlocks if she uses a screwdriver to remove all the hardware. I refuse to pay any medical costs or damages that may result in said experiment but I can recommend many tips on how to hide the resulting twitching.

  13. All I can say is, I’m taking the pledge. I’m completely weak and spineless when it comes to anyone shitting on my carpet so I need all the help I could get. I love when I get comments and feedback. I pretend to be tough, but really, if someone were to insult me I would cry into a tub of Ben and Jerry’s. Thanks for posting this.
    Stupid trolls.

  14. Slow clap…

    Love you!

  15. Well, I missed that post, but now I need to go read it. So there, an increase in traffic at the very least. I have a colorful vocabulary (and so do my children now) so I’m on your side anyway.

  16. I loved the gumball machine post! I just went back and read it and the comments. The whole time I was reading the negative comments I was thinking, “If you can’t say something nice don’t say anything at all.” Why couldn’t they do that. I know it is their right to have a different view but they don’t have to be mean when they voice it. They could have stopped reading or just put in their comment that they didn’t like the post and left it at that. I love reading your blog for your humor and the way you look at life and parenting. It helps to know that there are people dealing with the same issues. I am so glad you brought “Take the Pledge” to the attention of your readers. I hope those who commented negatively see this. Keep the great post coming.

  17. My blogs have not taken off enough to invite trolls but I have dealt with mommy mobs in groups which is even worse because by then they know you and are therefore able to wield much harsher blows. Didn’t read the troll posts but can only imagine what they said. I found your post absolutely hilarious and something that enforced my grocery-shopping-is-not-a-family-event rule. My husband keeps pestering me about going “all together” and I look at him like he has two heads. That is MY TIME DOGGONE IT! I don’t think he’ll ever get it though. And here, it’s claw machines that are evil because a certain husband of mine got our daughter into them while they were in South Korea where things were much easier to get out of claw machines. Now, everytime she sees one, she expects to get money to play and expects to get something as well. Definitely much easier for me to go out on my own!

  18. Trolls? That’s the best you could do?

    I was thinking more like ass-gags. Don’t look that up. Probably not in Websters.

    YOU, my friend, are priceless. And when shit gets thick, we all stick together. It says tons about you when so many came to your defense. And really, we know you’d do the same thing. It’s who you are…it’s how you roll.

    On another note…I’m not a mom. And as fabulous as I’m sure the pledge is, for me it’s not worth getting knocked up just to be able to sign it. I’ll just stick by you and if I get bullied, I’ll let you take’em out for me if my first blow to the neck doesn’t do it.

    (I am not normally that violent. I think just thinking about it got me all riled up again.)

  19. Oh for Heaven’s sake. I read that whole post and couldn’t even figure out what someone would have a problem with. The only name calling I’ll sling is at Kristin @WhatSheSaid – she was a damn Chuck Norris of blog commenting. I’m glad she’s my friend. I’d hate to get on her bad side.

    • “The Chuck Norris of blog commenting.” That has got to be one of the most awesomely brilliant compliments I’ve EVER gotten!

      And I love how I’m developing this reputation as a badass. If you ladies ever meet me in person (and here’s hoping!), then I’m afraid you’ll be sorely disappointed. 😉

  20. Exactly.
    If you don’t agree with what someone says and can’t talk it out respectfully? Walk. Away. (Or click off. Whatever. )
    And mean people DO suck.
    I was MIA in Sicky Sick Girl Land when all this came down, otherwise I woulda got all Mom Pledge on their asses for you. I Defend with Kindness & Respect Kung Fu.

  21. I hate to hear that adults are being bullied, too. Great blog. I have been spreading the news amongst my speechie friends and we love your honesty! Mean people shouldn’t have such power…don’t give it to them.

  22. Last week was fun! Let’s NOT do it again anytime soon.

    Love that “Got Trolled” graphic. Love the saying to the ladies at your potluck. Love this post. And love YOU! (Wanna motorboat?)

  23. Iris,
    I originally ended up on your blog via the SLP post (because I am an SLP and that post was A-MAY-ZING). I have been “stalking” your posts since then and ending my days with so many giggles that I shake the bed while I read them! I have shared many of your posts (including the gumball one) with my husband, friends, and coworkers. I am not a mother. However I work with children birth to 3 years old on a daily basis. Therefore, I can EASILY relate to being in a situation like yours. The trials and tribulations of children are wearing on a mother and the ONLY way to survive it without completely losing your mind is to LAUGH YOUR ASS OFF and of course drink wine 😉 Keep on keepin’ on – we’ve got your back!

  24. WWMDD? Lol!!!
    Keep on girl, keep on, ‘ cause I need SOMETHING to laugh at.
    (Please note I didn’t write “someone”)

  25. Can’t believe that I read THAT post … and then missed the drama … nothing like living drama vicariously thro other people. But looky up there, you have some of the most awesome people out in this bloggyland of ours who already have your back – can’t beat that …

  26. Hands down, you are the funniest blot I read! Haters go elsewhere!Keep the faith lady and keep telling it like it is!

  27. Wowee… I have followed your blog for close on 6 months and I adore it… so funny and well I totally get where you are coming from! I had also read the gumball post, laughed hysterically and read it again to make sure I didnt miss anything, then continued on my day in much better spirits and didnt think too hard about it, til I read this post and was like ‘say what?!’ reread the post and could not understand where they were all coming from.. Obviously first time readers with nothing better to do and time to waste.

    Love your work and the Vlog was spectacular, oh and as I am commenting for the first time I may as well get it all out 😀 the post about an advertisement for sweet smelling perfume for ‘down there’… cripes totally blew my socks off! (I live in Australia so we didnt have it over here!) Woweee, they really will try to sell you anything in the US… And I love the way you write it like you say it… all the americanisms.. just damn awesome! I love how serious meets humourous here… I will be sticking around (read lurking) for sure!!

    Rounding up now.. I totally love your blog!

    • Woweee! Another delurker?! Day-yam, I’mma have to be all boo-boo more often if it brings all these fabulous readers out of the shadows to say hello! 😉 Thanks for the great comment and the “rounding up now” part made me laugh out loud!

  28. Well done, you!
    The Mom Pledge is something I’ve been thinking about doing for about six months now. I haven’t had any reason to join on my blog (yet), but I have been the target of online bullying through a forum years ago, so I’ve known about trolls for a while. (The bashing was the direct cause of someone I knew in real life and who was like a sister to me airing my personal life for all to see. Needless to say, I don’t talk to her anymore.)
    It is definitely something every woman/mother should consider doing and a wonderful cause to join.

    • Thanks Kathleen! Yes, I agree. Just a great resource and knowledge is always power. Sorry to hear about your experience with online bullying and the loss of a friendship. 🙁 What is wrong with people?!

  29. I read the article and loved it. It reminded me of how I felt when my daughters received a piece of junk out of some stupid machine. If these trolls cannot understand the humor in your story, or the fact that it speaks the truth to how real people feel, they need to take a serious look in the mirror. Maybe they are Stepford trolls??

  30. Wow. I loved the gum ball piece. Left my house smiling yesterday but very disappointed about those damn stickers. I would have loved to get the green glow in the dark duckie, so I was kinda rootin for the old lady with the quarters. My face looked just like bucket head’s after seeing that photo of that second sticker. But to think that there are that many people out there who don’t know what satire is, who can’t imagine a funny(to me) and rude, tasteless(that’s what makes it funny to me) monologue running through your head.? WTF?!

    See the Slate story about positive effects of commenting on blogs.

    As always, you make me laugh. What a great ability to have.

  31. So I have just recently started reading your blog as I am expecting and needed some comfort about being home alone with 3 children for a year and acceptance that although my house will be in chaos and I will appear crazy my kids will be happy and healthy, hopefully. I LOVE YOUR BLOG. I have forwarded it to friends and my husband (who does not get it at all, but he never laughs at my jokes either) and look for it daily at work. That said, loved the vlog but keep blogging cuz needing to listen to things I am not supposed to be looking at at work will get me in trouble. Love the reminder of Pollyanna, I knew I liked the story as a child but had to wiki it to recall the whole story, it is amazing in retrospect how much influence it had on my life. And sorry about the bullying… Personally, I laughed out loud at the gumball story. I always thought I would be a perfect repetitive calm disciplinarian (as described by the childless ones) but once you have kids and are tired sometimes you need the time out more than the kids do. My favorite example of my parenting is when my 5 year old was pitching a fit because although he already had some candy he wanted more, I did the proper thing and told him ‘no’. When he kept on I took the said candy he wanted jammed it in MY mouth and devoured it. If anyone wants to attack bad parenting there is one for them.
    Regardless, I never comment but wanted to say thank you and please keep posting as I feel this site will maintain my sanity when I am at home with the lil’ ones.

  32. Oh. My. God. First let me say that I LOVE LOVE your blog. You cuss. It warmed my heart. I felt right at home. …sigh… I was reading a Zadge post, which I do and noticed a comment from “Carrie” and liked what she had to say, so I went to visit her. She was pretty upset about the nasty comments that you got for being such a bad mom. I thought that I really wanted to see what this post was about to inspire such meanness. So here I am. People are interesting aren’t they? As the mother of three grown men, (and no one is more surprised than me that they survived childhood) I can really sympathasize and empathize and all that with you. Children and grocery stores should never mix, and yet mothers all around the world are forced to take their kids regularly. Can you imagine the sensory bombardment that a kid feels at the gorcery? I have been through so many meltdowns at the grocery store – some even done by my boys. So tell the haters to go fuck themselves and carry on. I loved the story and could so feel your pain. And I loved that you called Francis a whore- even if it was only in your mind. OH and I love the pic of the dog poop with the little green man. One day I will tell the story of the sock that passed through my dogs digestive system and lived to be worn by my husband (although he doesn’t know it) another day.
    So thanks for cheering me up with your stories. Ignore the haters, cuz you’ve got a lot of friends out in the big world.

    • Thank you Suzanne! YES – that sensory bombardment thing! That is hard for me, even as a wine-addled adult. Imagine how hard it is for kids! Would LOVE to hear the story of the sock. That sounds like a winner!

  33. Wow. I read your blog religiously, but never pay attention to the comments. I didn’t realizeypu had been trolled. Nice job taking the high road!

    And I’m still waiting for your book deal!

  34. Maybe if those gals were mom’s (or just decent people), they would have learned the good ol’…if you can’t say anything nice line. One of my other favorite blogs (yes, you are on the tippy-top of the list), recently went through this same blogging issue. Reading her thoughts might lift your spirits…http://www.younghouselove.com/2012/01/dealing-with-criticism/ Mean people do suck. As a mom of three (8, 6, 3), I totally comiserate with you and your daily dramas. I appreciate you injecting humor into the situations, because in most kid-related situations…if we aren’t laughing, we would be crying.

  35. Holy Mackerel Iris!
    I can’t believe that people dissed you on that post!
    I don’t remember how I linked into your blog, but that was the first post I read, and I almost peed my pants! Then I showed my husband, and he read through the last 10 or so posts and wouldn’t give me the computer back! He thinks you are hilarious and wonders why I won’t let him talk like that. He just doesn’t get it.
    I sent links to your blog to every woman I know. And I know they are enjoying reading you as well.
    Keep it up! I do look forward to the chuckles!
    Karen

    • I know – of all the posts! I thought it was one of my more tame ones, to be honest. I definitely think it was a group of women from an online message board somewhere who just routinely go around searching for trouble. Sad but true. Oh well. Now I know they’re out there and know how to deal with it next time.

      Love that story about your husband! So funny! Thanks for sharing me with him, Karen! 🙂

  36. I went back and looked at the comments on the gumball post, and it made me sad because I really enjoy your blog. (I admit that I also had to look up “trolling” … why would anyone want to do that to another person?!)

  37. Iris, I loved this! This was great! And the pictures you chose, were perfect, and hilarious!!! You go, girl.

  38. Can I take this pledge if I’m the mom of wiener dogs? Because if so…. *runs to pledge*.

    I hadn’t (until now) read all those nasty comments. The entire time I was reading them, I was all, “Dayum Iris!” You are smart. You’re basically goin’ viral. I think a reality TV deal may be in the works.

    Holla, trolls! 😉

    • Absolutely! I believe the spirit of the pledge is for anyone who wants to take a stand against online bullying, particularly girl on girl action. Wait, that didn’t sound right. You know what I mean. Elizabeth, the author of The Mom Pledge blog, is extremely responsive and cool. She’s on Twitter too. Hit her up and ask if you want to be sure, just in case I’m over stepping my bounds.

      Holla!!!

  39. Just wanted you to know that you are fucking hilarious. I laugh so hard my breastfeeding baby gets popped off the tit. I love the way you tell it straight. The good, the bad, the ugly and the downright fucked up six ways to Sunday. Don’t let Trolls change you girl. Keep on keepin on. Milkshakes are good for mommy.

  40. I’m on it. How on earth did I miss all THAT last week???

  41. For the record, I loved the grocery store post. I had no idea it caused such a stir! I had an experience myself that was rather unsettling on facebook page. She got offended because she misunderstood another commenter and then tried to rally people to leave my page because of the bad vibe. SHE WAS THE BAD VIBE! I finally blocked her from my fanpage and then she found my email, left comments on my blog, had her husband leave comments, etc. All the while, she was calling me the bully.

    I never responded once (even though I really wanted to!) and finally she went away. Silence always wins in these situations.

    • Ew, wtf?! Why to people have to stir up trouble like that? Sorry you had to deal with such negativity. Like my tween says, “Haters gonna hate, potatoes gonna potate.” For the record, I love your blog.

  42. I read the post (and even commented) but missed the Mama Drama until KK told me… I will NEVER understand people that continue to revisit blogs & YouTube videos only to post negative comments. Get a hobby, people. I hear stamp collecting is fun. As for the cussing?!?! Bitch, you are my HERO in that department. I could give Kid Rock a run for his foul-mouthed money any day of the week but never knew other moms talked that way until I found you!! Thanks to you, my dear Iris, I have now given myself permission to fully uncensor… God help us all!!!

  43. Iris, I’m just gonna say straight-up that I can’t BELIEVE that in all your time blogging, this is the first time somebody trolled you. Your posts are practically *designed* to get uptight folks’ panties in a twist! Which is of course why I love them and mentally high-five you all.the.time. I just don’t often pay attention to the comments section beyond a quick skim. Good on ya for taking The Pledge and standing up proudly against girl-on-girl…uh, bullying. I wish I was less familiar with it my own self, but then again, us experienced ladies know what to do, amiright?

  44. I’ve had internet bully’s attack me twice in the last 6 months. The crazy thing is that they are forming message boards where they post someone’s link and then everyone attacks it. It’s crazy!

    I like this pledge….

    • I saw that with a group I had joined that formed due to some moms being kind of tired of the whole “perfect mom” thing on a parenting forum we all were on. Thing is, it went from being a support group for moms who didn’t fit into the mold to being a “hey, go check out this thread and start trouble” group. I might have checked out the thread but I never went to start trouble, and sometimes the things I said disagreed with the group I was in. But that was kind of the problem too. I ended up being deleted from the group but came to realize that I should have left long before it reached that point. I should have left when I first became uncomfortable with what some of the members were doing. While I never like to be deleted from a group, I’m grateful that they at least haven’t caused me any trouble though I am fully prepared to go to the moderators if they ever do.

  45. Iris, I was happy to come to your defense. You controversial hooker, you! 😉

  46. I stand up and Pledge Allegiance to Positive Girl-On-Girl interactions only, ever. I just made up a secret handshake, but you can only do it with yourself and in private.

    You know I love you, girl. I wanted to shank those biatches so badly. It was (and still is) a totally funny post.

    NICE PEOPLE RULE!

  47. Iris, you’re fabulous. I’m truly, truly sorry you had to endure a shitstorm. It was painful, viscerally so, to read those attacks on you, your readers, and humor and wit.

    I didn’t take the pledge a year or so ago when Elizabeth launched it, because I thought maybe, like you initially did, I was guilty of violating it. I’m not. Not trollish, not nasty, not a bitch.

    So, I’m off to pledge. In your honor, momma.

  48. Oh, Iris, I can’t believe this happened! How awful for you. So far I’ve been lucky (except for the parent who called my principal to complain that I referred to my students as “hormonal 14-year-olds.” Well, they are!). I hope I can handle it as well as you’ve done when it finally happens to me.

  49. What I thought was so bizarre about your troll situation and others I’ve read is how obviously those trolls misread or misunderstood the posts. You in no way were derogatory to those working in retail and a decent reading of your post would have made that clear. Are trolls lacking in reading comprehension? That’s my guess. Either that or they just like to stir up crap. Probably both.

  50. Love it as always! Sorry for the issues you had with your last post. If it makes you feel any better, every time I check my email the first thing I look for is another post from you! 😀

  51. Crap how did I miss this whole hullaballo…..oh yeah cabinet painting….did you delete the snarky comments? Can I go back and read them all now and defend you after the fact? I love you Iris….bless their little small brained hearts! And I havent even read the comments yet.

  52. So sorry you were the victim of “mean girls” comments.
    I took the pledge after they crapped on my space too.
    Love you and your words!
    Go guuuurrrrrlllll.

  53. Mean people do suck and I’m sorry if the comments hurt your feelings. However, when you called the “Granny” a whore that was mean…the story was funny but the name calling was mean and while my sense of humor is broad I did not find it funny. I also felt a sorry for bucket head…God knows I go for a the picture and the blog post..but the little guy sure looked like he needed to be picked up, and carried out of the store. I wonder how we would feel as grown-ups if someone snapped our picture when our hearts were breaking. Before the lynch moms grabs ME…I think you are a terrific story teller and I read that you are a wonderful mom..AND “creating a kind environment is two-fold and a pledge works both ways.”

    • Although I am sure that Iris will appreciate the general respectful tone of your comment, I do have to ask: why read her blog if you find it offensive? If I dont like a book, I dont buy it. If I dont like a TV show, I dont watch it… etc. I dont send a letter to the author or show producer, I simply choose to walk away. It’s not a personal thing, I just generally dont understand people who feel it necessary to go out of their way to negatively critique others (same goes for professional critics, they irritate the heck out of me). The only reason I am currently responding to your comment is because I believe that Iris will be much too polite to tell you that if you dont like what she writes, then simply dont read it. Just as she was too polite to tell Frances to mind her own business and to not undermine her parenting. As for poor Bucket Head, I highly doubt that his mother taking a picture of his I’m-totally-not-impress face will have scarred him for life. This is a humour piece. An exageration of a real life situation meant to entertain her readers. It is not meant to be taken literally. Her words (such as “whore”) are deliberately chosen in order to provide an overall tone to the story. This is her blog, she can say whatever she feels like and if you dont like it, simply walk away. It’s not because you have an opinion that you must share it. There is absolutely no point in negative commenting.

      • Hi Karine. Oh boy – this is a pickle. I think there is a difference between constructive and negative commenting.

        Katybeth is actually a long-time reader and not one of those “trolls.” I respect her for coming forward with constructive criticism, particularly since she did it with honor. I don’t necessarily agree with her opinion, but I don’t want loyal readers to feel like they can’t dissent. Good critique can help a writer to grow.

        Thank you for so eloquently defending my writing style and for truly getting the tone of that particular post. I appreciate you!

      • I enjoy most everything that Iris writes. I find her funny and genuine. Blogs are not a book they are a conversation. I had an opinion which I shared…I hope with respect for the author. My comment was not negative it was an opinion. I trust as top notch blogger that Iris will be able to see the difference.

    • Hey Katybeth,

      I appreciate the comment and the sweet words about my story telling and parenting skills! I’m a little surprised that you feel this way since you have been reading my blog for such a long time and seem to understand my twisted sense of humor (or why would you keep coming back, right?).

      You do realize that I didn’t really call her that word, right? It was just my internal dialogue, or a sampling thereof.

      Also, I assure you, no children were harmed in the making of this post. My legal team has advised me to not reveal any of my magic tricks, but trust me on this when I tell you that I use a lot of creative license in my writing. 🙂

  54. So I’m catching up on your blog… And I read the blog post about that damn bubble gum machine. Hilarious! I did not know you were under troll attack.

    Good for you Iris! Stand up to the meanies. (And reap the bonus clicks!)

    (Someday I hope to be married, have a passel of kids, and teach them all kinds of crazy goodness about themselves, life, and the people in it. I imagine I won’t be a color in the lines kind of girl, and that’s fine with me. Especially with women like you to pave the way!)

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