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How to Deal with Haters Online

Posted Nov 14 2012 8:24pm

I've been one of the lucky bloggers. People don't often show up on my blog, read one post and then determine who I am as a person and proceed to call me out on whatever garbage they've made up about me, my health and my life.

I know other bloggers who have been berated online because of their health problems and how they are treating them. It honestly makes me embarrassed for the human race that there are people out there who are taking time to publicly hate someone they've never met.

But that's what spam filters and delete buttons are for.

I have however been judged by people I know on Facebook. People who jump to conclusions about me because of how I look. People who think that all my problems are because of my weight. People who think that because I'm overweight, that I must eat garbage and sit on my ass all day long.

Last year I was having a good couple of weeks. I was unaware of my fibromyalgia, so I didn't know that pushing myself too much at the gym would cause an inevitable flare up. I enjoyed the gym and was excited about the prospect of continuing weight loss (because I'd already lost seventeen pounds on my own).

After a particularly brutal workout, I reached for my phone and logged into Facebook and jokingly typed, "Dont you just wish that working out was easy?"

The replies came quickly.

"It's called working out for a reason. Once you start it'll get easier. You just need to start."

"You need to work out. It's the only way you'll lose all that weight. You need to start taking care of yourself."

"This is why you're sick all the time."

And my personal favorite . . .

"You need to get off the computer for once and go to the gym!"

The replies? From my own family. Family members who had assumed that I was home playing on Facebook instead of logging on at the gym after my third workout that week. Family members who think that because I don't leave my house to go to work, that means I sit at home all day playing FarmVille and watching Soap Operas while eating bonbons and McDonalds.

Instead of responding, I deleted the entire thread, went home, and went back to the gym the next day. Because fighting with them would only use up the fire inside of me. Fire and energy I later used working on my health. Their words of discouragement left me angry, but not defeated. It really is all about picking your battles. Sometimes the ability to enlighten someone is a blessing. But all too often we're faced with people who are set in their ways. People who have already made their decisions about who you are. And it's a waste to try and fight it.

Because you know who you are, what you feel, how your body works and what your limits are.

And the only thing they are doing is losing your respect.
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