Saturday 9 October 2010

Life online

I use the internet, a lot, more now than at any time in my life. I love Facebook and Twitter, I use forums a lot. I think this increase in my usage coincides with what has been one of the loneliest and most socially isolating periods of my life, as well as one of the happiest.

I do attend baby groups and activities, but most of these are for babies under 1, once babies turn 1 parents tend to return to work, and their children go to nursery. Baby groups only run once a week, and usually only for 90 minutes. The rest of the time, I am with Joseph, and at 17 months, whilst a lot of fun, still sleeps a lot and his conversation leaves a little to be desired at this stage!

I love to spend time talking to other mummies on line, and keeping up with the news. I enjoy hearing about the minutae of other peoples' lives and what people are thinking and getting up to.

But I have been considering of late, how I can better utilise my time. My husband and I have started fostering training and there is a lot of work to do to build our portfolio of evidence to take before the fostering panel. Christmas is coming, and money is tight, which means I will make a lot of presents rather than buy. And then there is the small matter of income generation, could my time be spent making things, offering my services to businesses, or generating an income rather than frittering it away on line?

I miss the hubbub of work. I miss the walks around the Quays at lunchtime with my friends. I miss chats by the coffee machine. My work involved a lot of interaction over the phone, and I find being at home quite lonely in comparison.

Also once we start fostering we need to consider how much information we give about our day to day lives online, and also we need to set a good example which means not spending all my time on line messing about, and lets face it, a lot of it is just messing about rather than a good use of time.

Would I miss it? Would the online world miss me? Or will I be a better person for getting a bit more of a life offline?


  1. I'd miss you if you weren't online so much. I certainly know the feeling of isolation and loneliness. Maternity leave sounds like an amazing thing until you are actually on your own at home day in day out with your baby. Baby groups are also not easy when you lack in confidence. I've been to a few groups and they've just made me feel even more lonely and isolated when no one talks to you. I wish there was some way I could go back to work a couple of days a week but still take the rest of my maternity leave and have the best of both worlds. I have suffered from PND since the birth of my son and I feel going back to work is going to be the only way I get some normality back in my life. But at the same time I don't want to miss out on these early months of my son's life that I will never get back. So my decision is to stay off until after his 1st birthday and try and battle my demons. I don't participate much in the online forums anymore but I love keeping up with my "virtual friends" through Facebook and I know if times are ever really tough I have a huge community of friends who I can rely on for support. This is why I would miss you if you weren't online xxxx

  2. I had my son 6 weeks early because of pre-eclampsia. Your blogs and posts on BLISS have in some ways been the only support I've had from someone who really understands what it is like to have a tiny baby early, dangerously and completly not the way you dreamed it. Like your son my boy is doing really well now and I am back at work full time - exhausted, sometimes a bit stressed but amazingly overjoyed at this surprise late addition to my family. I think you write beautifully and although I know being a mother is a fufilling experience - I think your talents both linguistic and supportive could stretch to possibly anything you fancied branching out to....Whatever you decide - I'll miss your thoughts - thankyou for them.

  3. I really enjoy reading your blog, especially since I've pared down facebook myself, but would applaud you if you cut down your internet time - not as a criticism to you, but in celebration of re-entering the real world. I've been hooked on the net myself, and clearly still visit from time to time, but I think it can get a bit all-consuming and I do wonder sometimes about the immutability (I mean permanance...dunno if I have the right word here!) of the information we publish online.
    Anyway, best wishes to all!
    Zoe xxx