CAN WE JUST QUIT WITH THE BULLS**T? (AKA FAKERY)

I DON’T know what’s happened to me over the past few months.

But I do know this. No longer can I stand fakery.

No longer can I stand the not so sweet smell of bulls**t that seems to linger pretty much everywhere these days.

Do you know what I mean?!

I’ve talked about it a few times on my blog previously. About the importance of being honest and authentic. And yet even I found myself edging over to the dark side this year, continuing friendships with people whom I should have walked away from or pretending everything was tickety boo when things were anything but.

And I tell you this. Fakery is everywhere.

Look around you. Have a think. And you’ll find…

It’s all over the internet. In your Facebook feed, across loads of blogs and anywhere you dare to visit. The media is naturally full of it (literally) with nondescript celeb stories and thousands of photoshopped-to-death images of people – mostly women of course – all of which we’re bombarded with every day.

There’s just too much spin. And too much gloss.

Too many people pretending to be something they are not, hiding their true selves from the world, creating their own cover story. Too many of us concentrating on building a pretty picture, instead of concentrating on building a better world.

And don’t get me wrong. I love a pretty picture! I love hearing good news stories! I love celebrating when people do well and succeed!

But when does it cross the line? When does painting everything in a positive light become anything but light? When does it become a bit darker?

Because today, honestly? I’m struggling to figure out what is real and what is not. I struggle to make out the genuine, authentic people from those who are not. I struggle to make out the truth.

It’s all just so confusing. There’s just too much bulls**t.

(Or at least, so it seems to me.)

In fairness, perhaps there’s a thing as being too honest too?

I know, I’ve been far too open myself sometimes and have lost count of the amount of times I’ve opened my mouth when really – with the joy of hindsight – I should have kept it shut. Lost count of the times when I’ve shared my story, only to have chapters of it thrown back in my face.

The balance between authenticity and fantasy is so blurred sometimes, that it’s hard to know where to draw the line in the sand.

People love honesty. They respond to honesty. Yet, they also fear it. And they also try to stifle it.

We want it but we don’t want it. We need it but we don’t always want to hear it. We crave it from others but at the same time, we struggle to reveal ourselves.

It’s such a tricky thing.

But I want more of it. I need more of it. And I don’t think I’m alone.

I want to connect with people. And I can’t do this when they’re hiding who they are.

I want to know where I stand with people. Even if they hate my guts.

I want to know that I’m not alone. So I need more people to open their mouths and share a bit of their souls.

As a journalist, it’s your job to seek out the truth. To discover fresh stories. To get people to talk. And it always felt natural to me to do this.

Years ago, in an interview for a trainee journalist position, I was asked why I wanted the role and part of the answer I gave was that I am nosey. Or to put it more politely, inquisitive.

And it’s true. I am.

I’m fascinated by people and their lives. I love chatting to strangers and hearing their tales. I adore sitting in a coffee shop or park and watching people go by. Wondering who they are. What kind of day they are having or what they have experienced.

The answer I gave did thankfully land me the job. And I tell you, being a journalist taught me so much about people. And about communication.

About asking the right questions, encouraging people to speak and getting the most from them, with the little time I had.

Now, years on, it’s a bit of a standing joke with family, that wherever I go, strangers talk to me and share their stories. And oh, how I love it!

But it also tells me this.

It tells me that people are desperate to share their lives and feelings with others. Whether they are conscious of it or not.

Why?

Because everyone wants to be heard. From my three year old daughter to the little old lady sitting quietly behind you on the bus.

Which is why all the fakery, all the nonsense, all the glitz and all the spin, makes me sad. And frustrated.

Because it’s hard to reveal yourself when you’re covered in too many layers. It’s hard to be true to yourself, when others are not true with you.

On this blog, I pride myself on being honest. So, the irony isn’t lost on me, that today as I write about fakery, I am sat here wearing eyelash extensions (which are incredible btw!) fake tan and my hair wavy when it is naturally straight!

Does this make me a fake person?!

Well, that’s down to you to decide. But I bloomin’ hope not.

Because you see, in my humble opinion, the thing with fakery, is that it’s ok for things not to be ‘real’ as long as they’re not presented as the truth.

So fantasy? Sure bring it on. Being the best version of ourselves? Brilliant, let’s have more of it. Spin? As long as the balance is right, why not?

But when things are hidden. When we are lied to. When something is presented as real when it’s far from it, well this is all the kind of stuff I really don’t like.

This weekend, after celebrating my birthday, I decided to make a little list of all the ‘fake’ things I was going to stop doing at the age of 36 and top of the list was this one…I’m going to stop spending time with fake people.

Its a good place to start, for all of us I reckon, when we struggle with all the bulls**t.

And surely, can only go some way to making our world smell (and seem) a whole lot sweeter.

 

With love,

Kate

Lips

 

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31 Discussions on
“CAN WE JUST QUIT WITH THE BULLS**T? (AKA FAKERY)”
  • I agree wholeheartedly with this post! I pride myself on complete honesty on my blog, even if it ain’t pretty. If I’ve had a bad week or eaten takeaways, I tell my audience. I take unflattering photos of my bingo wings and stretch mark covered stomach to show progress and to show that I have a normal body. I would never want to come across as fake as I want to be relatable. I want people to see what I am doing and share their stories with me because they feel a connection and like someone understands.

    This world is full of fakers who pretend that their life is super amazing when it is everything but and it is our job as humans to see through that fakery and show life for what it is..normal.

    It ain’t always pretty but at least it’s real! Great post Katie, always a fan. x

    • Amazing Natasha! This is what the world needs.More of this. More of you. Thanks for your very kind words. x

  • I agree wholeheartedly, the people who resonate with me most are the ones who I feel are being honest. I think the difficulty the fakeness creates is a pressure for other women who aspire to be “perfect” and feel bad for “failing” to achieve something that was never achievable in the first place! On the flip side though, I am usually guilty of only posting about the positive side of life or in a positive way (both on my blog and personal accounts), I hope my honesty and genuine~ness (I think I just made that word up!) shine through. Great post, we could all benefit from less ‘fakery’ in our lives!

    • Thanks so much Hannah. I don’t think there’s anything wrong with positivity at all as long as its genuine! Good or bad, as long as you’re being authentic, it doesn’t really matter what the content is as long as it’s true. So I’m sure your sincerity shines through x

  • I love this!!! I’m honest as they come, I swear, I say when my kids are being tw*ts, I show myself glammed up to the 9s and homeless usually within a few hours of each other….unfortunately at 32 I have not yet worked out an in-between look. I have been criticised for this once or twice in reference to me saying in an incredibly difficult month where Id just found out my Granny had cancer and I was living in a building site with 2 boys under 4, who were off the map naughty pushing every button that: “I have a confession, I don’t enjoy my children at the minute” One person said “It was awful…we all think it but you cant say it”….

    At the time it really stung but after some soul searching I realised that:
    1. I was right because ITS THE TRUTH!!!
    2. I lost all respect for this person I knew as a fellow mother who would prefer us all going insane trying to pretend we are perfect and happy in motherhood every second. 3. I DONT have to be friends with everyone. A real ah ha moment….you can walk away from anyone that doesn’t nourish you and that’s ok. No bullsh*t.
    My blog has only survived I believe because of my #keepingitrealclub *Hunger Games Salute to all the the others out their* x

    • It’s bonkers isn’t how people are threatened by the truth?! But I think a lot of it, is down to the fact, that when someone reveals the truth about parenting being bloody awful at times, for example, others have to face that fact too.So many people live in utter denial and I guess don’t want reality. But I’m so glad you’re also in the #keepingitrealclub too. :) x

  • Hear hear Katie! We are deluged with an idea of a ‘perfect’ life, and it’s impossible. Honesty is always best. I am very warts and all – I don’t sugar coat anything. Why should I? Life can be beautiful, but life can be really bloody hard, especially when you are grieving. I too am very nosey and you’re so right, people want to be heard. It’s up to us to make sure people’s stories get heard, especially the tough stories xxx

    • It is indeed. And it’s one reason why I absolutely LOVE your blog. You give so much of yourself to others, you share so much, it never fails to leave me inspired and in awe.xxx

  • Wow what a great post!!! I am definitely like you and struggle with being too honest, I’ve had to learn to restrain what I say on social media or infront of some people because not everyone genuinely is interested in real life, and dwelling on negativity isn’t helpful, but I’ve wondered if I should try and change and not wear my heart on my sleeve as much and then I may have more ‘friends’, but I realised I just can’t do it. I am who I am and if people don’t like me being real then fine, I would be far more miserable being fake with many than transparent with the few. This is brilliant post xxx thanks for sharing

    • My pleasure. Thank YOU for commenting! You’re spot on too, you can only be who you are. As long as you’re happy with that and real, it’s no one else’s business. x

  • Totally agree!
    Can’t bear fakery and never have.
    I am honest and real.
    I too like fake eyelashes and fake tan but never pretend they are real…that is the difference between fake and real for sure!
    Let’s start a real revolution!!
    Great post x

  • This is really interesting as I try to strike a balance on my blog. I’ve openly admitted to my PND, the break up of my relationship and refereed to the harder times in my life. If I was too honest about what’s really happened to me in my past I’d probably have more readers and be more popular but I choose not to discuss those things for the sake of my family and my girls. I tend to avoid blogs that are too glossy and full of bs as you say. I’ve always said we are our own best PR agent. Of course we only want people to see what we want. Some of us, including myself fear judgement. I’d prefer people to see the honest side of me but some aspects of my life don’t need to be published. Although maybe it does in an indirect way. Who knows, it could be good for me? Another fabulous post lovely. Xx

    • I think you should share whatever you want to share darling. Just because you’re holding some stuff back doesn’t mean you’re not being real or authentic. As you say it’s all about finding that balance. There are so many things I would love to write about but haven’t and don’t because I don’t want to upset people. Or have Elsie read them. Honesty is the best policy, but only when made with judgment. Keep on being you and sharing what you feel is right and you won’t go wrong. x

  • Brilliant post. I completely agree. I am always drawn to genuine people who talk about life as it really is. Good and bad. As a blogger, I want to share the good and bad times too. Life can be wonderful but it can also be shit. For young women, I think it is impossible to live up to an ideal that they see in the media and in blogs. The perfect Instagrammed Pinterest worthy life. Life has ups and downs. And we should be honest about that. I would hate to think that my blog portrays me as anything other than who I am. Hugs Mrs H xxxx

  • I’m real hun :-) My blog has evolved over time and now I just be doing with half the stuff so am just writing about my life- as boring as it mainly is haha! x

    • I know you are darling! :) You’re one of the wonderful, authentic people. As for you being boring – NEVER! I’m not having it ;-) x

  • I love this post!
    It took me a long time (and lots of therapy) to get the point where I could be as honest and authentic as I am now – it wasn’t easy. I “misplaced” my self esteem and confidence when I was 13 – I tried to carry on without it but it didn’t work and resulted in depression and anxiety. Nothing could have prepared me for the horrific mental illness I suffered after my boy was born. I’m at peace with what happened, it gave me an opportunity to restart and I’m grateful x
    Reading your blog inspires me a lot x

    • Ah Beth, I hope you’re very, very proud of yourself. Sounds like you’ve been through hell and back but I’m thrilled to learn you’ve had a chance to start over. We all need one of those from time to time. Thanks so much for your kind words too. x

  • Oh hunny I absolutely love this post. I know I only just came upon your blog recently and then having the lovely pleasure of meeting you (not fakery I promise just american and ott here). lol I love how you describe fakery as I get a lot of bad rap for having highlights, or eyelash extension or a fake tan at times or any thing from heels and looking nice to being fake. I think not. It has to do with the person inside. I overshare and am way to touchy friendly bubbly with strangers because that’s who I am and like you I love a good pretty picture but I always try to stay true to myself and who I am inside comes out on my blog I hope. lol I did a glimpse in reality vlog recently its rubbish but just to show you my kids cry and scream and climb all over me while the house is a mess in my pjs in the middle of the day with no makeup on is a daily occurrence too. lol I think the world would be best if we all show the normal, the everyday as much as the pretty and the styled days :) Beautiful written. I love how you write.

    • I love this comment Jenny! Thanks so much.And yep,you’re right it all has to do with the person inside. Nothing wrong with some fake tan, eyelash extensions (I’m hooked!) or high heels. Love the sound of your real ‘vlog’ too – must check that out very, very soon.So glad we got to meet! And thanks for your lovely words too. Mwah!x

  • I have a different perspective from you. You say you want honesty, but honesty can be mean. For example, to be honest myself, I would let you know that when I was reading your piece above, I was thinking “Oh for goodness’ sake grow up and get over yourself. Stop complaining about others and mind your own business!” But to me, saying that is kind of nasty, and unnecessary. I don’t know you from Adam, so who am I to spout such judgements? There is probably a good reason in your own life and experiences, or ideas, that has caused you to make this complaint.

    At any rate, to me, a kinder approach to these things is this: instead of demanding ‘honesty’ from others, allow others to reveal as much OR AS LITTLE as they themselves prefer to reveal. Give others the gift of not trampling over their weaknesses, their need for privacy, secrets, etc, however silly, weak or annoying you consider those things. We are all human beings, and none of us is perfect. We all have our weaknesses and secrets and irrationalities and none of us are free of the need to present our best face to the world, including sometimes presenting a face that is more fantasy than reality. That is the human condition. And actually, in reaching for our best self, presenting our best face, even slightly over-optimistic (or ‘fake’, as you call it), helps us sometimes to better live up to that image we present. It actually helps people improve themselves. But even if it doesn’t, so what? Yes, it is true that if the only thing we ever present to the world is a cardboard cutout front having no basis in truth, we will thereby be damaging our ability to form and maintain good relationships, because, as you say, relationships require a certain amount of truth/reality, but even in a close relationship I still think it is a good idea to be kind enough to the one you love to allow him or her to present to you only as much truth about him- or herself as he or she prefers. Allow people to retain control of their own presentation, of the face they present to you and to the world more generally. If he or she does not want to reveal this or that truth to you, well, maybe he or she needs that privacy. Maybe it is a weakness that he or she can’t bear to face, let alone reveal to the world. Who am I to demand that another person can’t maintain a private sphere? It is not my life, it is theirs. Forcing people to reveal themselves is psychologically intrusive. Why does another person owe us any particular revelation? I simply do not feel the same outrage as you do about others presenting a ‘fake’ face to the world. We are all human beings and none of us is perfect. It is simply not my business. To me, it would be a nicer world if everyone were to be kind enough to allow others to present whatever face they feel inclined to present to the world, without feeling justified in ripping away others’ protective masks. At any rate, since I came to this way of thinking, I have found life so much more rewarding, and relationships have become paradoxically so much deeper than before.

  • This is a great post, Katie, and I think that your Birthday resolution is such a good place to start (I’m also very happy that I’m not on the ‘naughty list’ though!!) – I find it’s such a juggle all of this, and some of the decisions you are making are the kind of thing that might take others (me) a bit of time and courage to stand up for. I’m still in the ‘I want everyone to like me’ phase of life, I really want to move out of it though and get some self-confidence to say what I do or don’t like…scary! xxx

  • I don’t like fakeness, I don’t mind if people don’t want to reveal everything (that is their right) but I hate over the top fakeness. I like people to be real and genuine too xxx

  • I completely agree. As Aby says, there’s a difference between being private and being fake. We may choose not to reveal everything about ourselves, but why pretend to be something you’re not? Life”s too short to waste on people who can’t admit to who they are and be comfortable with their imperfections. Real friends will forgive flaws but not fakery.

  • Being yourself is definitely the most important thing to be, but I do think sometimes it is good not to be quite as honest as you might otherwise be to save peoples feelings. We British are very good at that – “yes I might pop down later’ clearly means you won’t but are trying to be kind. I think I like that sort if fake, but not I imagine the sort of fake that inspired this post! Thanks for linking up to #sundaystars

  • I couldn’t agree more. The main reason I began my own blog is because postnatal depression is simply not a side of new motherhood that people want to talk about. Not to mention the b*llshit portrayed about it in the media, which only increases stigma.

    I now try to be as honest as I can be – about motherhood and everything else. I try to make my FB posts a good combination of pride re how awesome my kid is with a very healthy dose of cold reality! If more people talked about the struggles of parenthood, the less alone those struggling would feel. Thanks for posting.
    #sundaystars

  • It is a tricky balance to be and where one line cuts of form the next. But you can have too much of anything can be right. Everything has a ying and a yang but I just never get the balance right. But definitely a lot of bullshit out there and maybe it could be an inner security thing but life is complex and does not always have the answers, I wish I did cause I HATE grey! Thanks for sharing X #SundayStars

  • It is so important to be honest, in what you write and who you are and how you are with other people. I know in the blogging world it’s good to see nice pretty photos and I love taking those and putting them on my site – but I like to think my words are true to me! x #sundaystars

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