Every tree limb overhead seems to sit and wait, while every step you take becomes a twist of fate.
Up on the watershed, standing at the fork in the road...

If you are new to our adoption blog please take a moment to scroll down to the archives at the bottom of this page and start with July 2009 post "Watershed."


Going Private?

This post is specifically for friends, invited family, and fellow adopters who have followed this blog, read the blog, or who are "blog stalking" quietly and wish to continue-in a way that is supportive and constructive.

I feel like my privacy has been seriously compromised in an event that happened this week while I have been traveling for work.

And unfortunately internet was down at my hotel so I wasn't really able to take the action I needed to. (I'm writing from the airport headed home.)

I guess it is something I should have predicted, this privacy problem, but it is easy to blog away your most personal thoughts and feelings without considering the massive scope and scale of the internet. Which is public. I'm not good at self editing or censoring so since I really don't want to change who I am or how I write I need to find another solution.

I'm not sure what to do.

Should I go private or should I remove all identifying information here?

For those of you who have made these kinds of decisions could you make a recommendation please?

My concern about going private is that I think I will lose connections, readers, people I have come to depend on. And I certainly won't meet anyone new. But I'm not sure how to successfully remove identifying information.

Ok, whew. This has been a hard week. On top of two previously hard weeks. Blogging is my only outlet and I feel so seriously compromised that my stomach is just churning. Once I address this privacy issue I will share with you a little about what happened.

~You know who.


  1. I often wonder about that same thing with us. Escpecially putting so much info on about the kids. I'd like to believe in the good of people but am scared by the 'what if' possibilities. I'm interested to know what happened to have your stomach in knots.

  2. I sorry you had troubles. I agree blogging is the best outlet I have. I have no advice. I thought about going private but haven't had any issues as of yet. My blog is not searchable so maybe that is it...not sure. I also installed a tracker so I could see who was reading my blog and nothing out of the ordinary.

    Good luck with your decision.

  3. Here is a link to our friends' blog who were once "public" bloggers but now have a more censored blog. I believe D, the dad, just asked everyone to leave a comment on his old blog if they wanted to continue to follow. He then emailed everyone the new blog address that was censored. He got lots of comments and eventually transferred all his stuff over to this blog:


    I'm sure he'd be happy to help you figure out a way to make some changes. He's also the guy who started ethiopiakids.com.

    Hope you find a solution that will be the best of both worlds!

  4. I just sent you a long email, but to summarize:
    1) going private is easier, in my opinion, than removing identifying info
    2) you will continue to make connections through the adoption world. I'm continually surprised by the number of people I meet through other people. My original private readers list was 40 people long, now I've maxed out at 100.
    3)good luck making your decision!

  5. I agree with Amanda. Although my blog is more of a personal journal as well as a "traveloughe" so to speak... i have met some wonderful people. But there comes a time... like now- when there is private stuff(names, places, faces) that I don't necessarily want people looking at if they have no need to. This is at least the 2nd time you've mentioned this-- so I think- for atleast the time being it will ease your worry. There is another provider that allows you to privatize specific posts rather than the entire thing... maybe wordpress?

  6. I'm a big fan of staying public..I think we have a responsibility to get the word out and advocate for those "left behind"...sharing your life is a BIG way to advocate.

    Either way...please add me to your list if you go private :)

  7. That is a hard choice - what ever you do please send me the password!!!

  8. I would be interested to know the nature of your "privacy breach." I have been considering switching to a different blog address and maybe switch to wordpress at the same time - in order to shore up anonymity on the blog. You are the second person I follow on the blogosphere that something has happened to, so I'm really contemplating what I need to change on my blog. I don't want to have my blog set to private though, because then it's too hard for people to find me... it is a touch decision though.

  9. Well, it won't surprise you that my preference is to remove identifying information! I absolutely understand the lure of private (and I totally understand why people do it) but the thing that REALLY grates my cheese about private blogs is that they don't show up in google reader. Also, if someone just clicks across to you, all they get is a 'you haven't been invited' message - there is no way to actually contact the person and say 'hey, can I read?' Iv'e done this a few times when people have left interesting comments, and I've wanted to read their blog but can't.

    When I've thought about going private, I've thought that if I did so, I would also create a 'mirror' blog that is public, and also shows up in my profile so that a) people can contac me through that blog and ask for access to the private one, and b) it would be possible to put up a message saying 'new post at....[private blog address]' so that people would be notified of new posts through their google reader. I don't really know if this would work as well as I think it would, but it could be worth a try.

    I just find that without anything like this, I end up losing track of people who have gone private, even when I REALLY don't want to! Which is my ulterior motive for hoping you don't, obviously!

    (Agree with others that wordpress can be a good option. And if you want to make things more private now, you would probably have to change blog addres because all your old information would still be searchable ).

    Good luck with deciding!! And so sorry about the privacy breach :(

  10. I went private a while back - it IS A HARD decision. I do agree with Leah - we do have a message to send to the world.....
    I made the decision for my kids- I write it about everything- it is my journal- scrapbook and life. I also write to keep Grandmas happy while we live overseas!:)
    The biggest thing that I miss is commenting on a blog and they actually know who I am! - so sorry I have done it to you!
    I would love to keep reading my email is hollikieser@hotmail.com and of course I will invite you to read mine- if you would want.:)

  11. Amanda,
    If you do make your blog private, please allow me to follow! I love reading your updates and hope you don't find it too odd that a total stranger is really excited for your family and the adoption you seek. In a 6-degrees of seperation way we are connected. I know Leah Young, you know Leah Young... were connected.

    I hope your stomach stops churning soon. I tried to make my blogspot blog private this week to family and friends, but it was such a hassle and a disaster that I finally returned it to open, but its not searchable.

    Good luck

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  13. Yikes, tough decision.

    I took my travelogue blog completely offline when it contained so many posts about my ex and I didn't want new boyfriends to come across it. It would have been too time consuming to censor him and my life abroad with him. But I didn't want my new boyfriend to be intimidated or feel like he was competing with old boyfriend because we had so many amazing experiences together... all documented online for the world to see. Anyhow... I miss it.

    I also like to think that people are good and that trust builds more trust. You're trusting us readers with your emotions and we all hold them dearly for different reasons... and we all get something out of your writing that relates to our own lives. And we each need that and benefit from it... and therefore come back for more. And the benefit of keeping this blog public is that someone who is searching for a kindred soul may come across this and find healing or a sense of interconnectedness when they need it the most.

    So, I guess it's up to you to decide how much damage could be done to you and your family by people who haven't figured out "trust" yet, to determine if the public blog is worthwhile. Some malicious people will find ways to hurt us no matter what we do and I'd hate for us all to blockade ourselves for protection... but at the same time you and your family is the most important priority...

    If you go private, add me to the access list please:)

    Miss ya and happy new year!


  14. If you do go private please add me too!

  15. It's always amazing to find a blog (a person!) you didn't know existed....like I just did right now! :)
    And...you're in Denver?! Wow--I live in Longmont. Very cool!
    Nice to "meet" you. I for one am glad you're still public for this very reason! But, I obviously understand the dilemma...


About Me

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J and I have been married for almost 15 years. We have shared many adventures and a lot of watershed moments. In 2009 I began blogging and in 2010 we adopted our daughter from Ethiopia. In March of 2012 we began the process to adopt a little boy from Haiti. This blog follows the many twists and turns on the road to our two children and beyond.