I really hate indecision, especially in myself and especially when it comes to my professional life. I like to be viewed as a person who knows what they are doing and follows through with promises and commitments; a big part of the reason I stuck it out with James for so long and why so many victims do stick it out so long. They are responsible people who follow through on their commitments.
This post is to do with the blog and the recent workshop I posted about offering the other day and thoughts I have had about changing things around here and I wanted input from everyone.
First I will tell you what I have been thinking; where my head is at and why.
Facts: I started this blog thinking that if one woman found it and was helped, what I went through would be worthwhile. I found a notebook from 2011 and I had written that I was so excited to have gotten 57 hits that day. I remember being at my girlfriend’s house while I waited and watched to see my hits for that day roll over 700, I think it ended up being 757 hits that day and I was thrilled!! I look back at the stats and consistently my hits have doubled every year and now it is basically a full time job.
Dilemma: I was trying to catch up on my replies to comments the other day and found some dating back to June that I had missed. I really hate doing any job 1/2 assed. Someone comes here looking for answers and I know how desperate they are feeling, been there, and they finally cry out for help and don’t get an answer for over a month? It is like any addiction, when the victim finally realizes they have a problem and they reach out for help, if that help isn’t there they are very likely to go back to their old ways. So many victims feel that they don’t matter anyway, and then to be ignored when they reach out is adding insult to injury. I know I can’t save every victim of abuse but when I put it out there that i want to help I feel a responsibility to be there. I also know that the victim will grasp any reason to go back to their abuser and being ignored on a site that is supposed to be there to help them is as good an excuse any.
The blog is at a stage where I can not do it in my spare time but in order to do it full time I have to find a way to make it pay me a living wage or at the very least use it as part of the bigger package that does earn me a living wage.
The donations have been a Godsend and gotten me through, especially the last year but I can’t rely on donations. For one thing, I always feel like a charity case, plus it is very uncertain, some months are great and some months there is nothing and I can’t live with the uncertainty of that. I need some sort of stability in my life, it is the only thing in my life that plagues me, but money is a very necessary evil, we all need it and all the inner peace in the world is not going to put groceries in my fridge. I need, for myself, for my self esteem and my peace of mind; to come up with a way of supporting myself. Also it is the same people donating time after time. I know i am providing a much needed service, the stats don’t lie; and I don’t feel bad asking to be paid for that service.
I believe that things happen for a reason and if you are hitting one brick wall after another maybe you are heading in the wrong direction. Like with trying to get funding to re-educate to be a Life Skills Coach, it is ridiculous that twice I was told I was denied and then when I questioned it I was told I was “this” close, and now with the move etc my living arrangement is too unstable to qualify. WTF! It is more frustration than it’s worth. I wrote my Ombudsman filing a complaint against the company I feel dropped the ball with my case. I hear d back from them that they have so many complaints to deal with they won’t be dealing with my case any time soon. So I miss the September start date.
I can not tell you how many times I have been telling someone the story of what I have gone through trying to get funding and they have said, “You probably know more than anything they could teach you at school anyway, you have lived it, there is no better education than that.” and you know what? they are right. I know it deep down because when I was looking into schools, none of them offer courses specific to domestic abuse, they offer conflict resolution, family counseling, anger management, and when I was talking to the admissions department at Rhodes I was told they were looking forward to me attending classes because of what I can contribute from my personal experience. When I went to the counselor she told me that she saw no reason for me to continue coming to see her, although she would have loved to pick my brains and hear more strictly from a professional standpoint. She also wanted to hear how I managed to heal myself and find inner peace without professional help because that is what she tries to accomplish with her clients. For them to have inner peace even when their world seems to be falling apart all around them.
How many times has someone in here said, “This needs to be taught in schools.” ? I know! right?! but no one is doing it and I don’t have a clue how to break into that market, but I truly feel it is the answer to reducing domestic abuse, get them before they are broken. Like the saying goes, “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure”. It is a lot easier to prevent a tragedy than try to fix someone who has been destroyed by a narcissist/psychopath. Don’t we all wish we would have known they even existed let alone the damage they do?
Hauling scrap it was not what I set out to do but it was the only thing that presented itself and I had to make money. I was dead set AGAINST hauling scrap, James had done it, usually in the cloak of darkness, I saw it as something only criminals and losers did. But people kept approaching me and I kept turning them down and doing landscaping and rubbish removal, having to fight to get paid for working my ass off and not making enough to live on. Finally I stopped fighting it and took a job as a favor to a friend who had a friend who was getting out of the garage door business and wanted to clean up his yard but the last time he had a scrap hauler come in the guy had come back and robbed him blind so he was leary and my friend knew I could be trusted. I worked for a week at his place and made the best money I had made since owning my truck. Here I was making an honest living hauling scrap, maybe there was a place for me in the scrap metal industry? So I started looking at it as something I could make money at and decided if I was going to do it I was going to do it right, present a professional image, do up business cards, and be a real business and not a typical fly by night scrap hauler who cruises back alleys and works after hours. i never advertised, people just started stopping me and asking me to haul away their scrap, the businesses I did approach were always very positive and over time, I got more confident and proud of what I did and what I had accomplished. (I am sure it pissed James off to no end that I was succeeding and doing it honestly and part of the reason he had to sabotage me and then try to ruin my reputation).
So anyway, maybe this is the same kind of situation. I never intended to make money blogging about narcissists, psychopaths or domestic abuse but it has become a passion I can not walk away from now and I am proud of what I have accomplished so far. I believe I can do awesome at it and have a lot to offer that isn’t just a repeat of numerous other sites.
I have sent out hundreds of resumes for every kind of job I know I can do and I have had one call back.
I got cut off welfare because of my blog and the donations I received.
I can continue to spend my time trying to get back on welfare by jumping through their never ending hoops to get not enough money to live on, applying for jobs I don’t really want to do and jobs I shouldn’t do because of my heart, and continue to fight a losing battle trying to get funding to go to school or I can look at the blog in a different light and approach it as a profession, as a career and a job. So far it has been a “hobby” ,a cause I fight for, but I have not treated it like my profession and until I do, it will remain a hobby.
On that note, this is what I am thinking and need your opinion on. Many of you have been coming here for quite a while and you know what helped you, what you value in the blog, what could be done to improve it, and I want to hear everyone’s thoughts.
I want to always have this information free for people looking for answers but I am thinking of starting a new blog, one not with WordPress, one where I can get my own ads and sponsors. I have checked out a site called Wix, where you pay to add on features to your blog, one feature I love is a live chat room, also you can have a store, do surveys, have subscriptions, mailing lists for newsletters, the chat feature is a lot more interactive with commenters being able to post pictures and stuff and would enable me to do live chats at specified times each days. I don’t know how much it would cost me per month and I would have to get another domain name. I could do it several ways, I can link to it through this blog but make it a freestanding blog with a different name (to be honest, ladywithatruck is not really relevant any more, I don’t have a truck, it has nothing to do with abuse or narcissists or anything really, it is part of my past and I kinda would like to leave it in my past) but I have been hesitant because I have so many followers and hits but I could keep it as my free site.
The new site would become my main focus, although I would still be replying to comments on Lady witha truck I would not be posting as much there, I have said it all a million times and would just post maybe once a week or every two weeks. The new site would be focussed more on the healing after a narcissist and not so much on the narcissist, more focussed on the victim becoming a survivor and not a victim, moving forward, personal growth, not finding their old self, but finding their best self, because that is where my interests lie now and I am enjoying the new me I am discovering and want to share that with people now and I feel it is the reward for the pain of being with a narcissist. I want everyone to be their most authentic self and comfortable with themselves and value who they are. It excites me to no end and is so much more positive than talking about the narcissist. We all have to go through stages of healing there comes a point where the victim has to leave the narcissist behind. As I am typing it is all kinda making sense to me and is a natural progression, like Ladywithatruck is where a victim goes to figure out what happened to them, to start to make sense of what they have experienced and then they have to prepare to go on with their life and that is where “No Reim’er Reason” comes in, finding your purpose, and find your true self and be the best you can be. I will be concentrating on things like inner peace, laws of attraction, etc as I explore new ways of becoming the best me I can be. Membership to the new blog would be like membership on a dating site (after all you are falling in love with yourself and hopefully readying yourself to start dating again or fix your picker).
I would offer a one month subscription, 3 month, 6 months and 1 year. I looked up what dating sites charge:
E-Harmony charges $59.95/month, or a 3 month membership works out to $39.95/month, 6 months $29.95/month and a year is $19.95/month
Match.com charges $34.99/month, or $19.95/month for a 3 month membership and $16.99/month when you join for 6 months.
Zoosk starts at $29.95/month, $19.95 for a 3 month membership and $9.95/month when you sign up for a year.
So even the cheapest site is charging $120.00/year to join. As with dating sites people are hoping to not need a year or lifetime membership. It would require me keeping track of whose membership is expired but I think I can come up with a fairly simple solution to that. I would always have some sort of special topic I am covering, reviewing books or hopefully interviewing experts on dating etc. So in lieu of a workshop I would just open a new “pay to join” website. The information I was going to put in the workshop would be exactly the same but offered through a new website. What do you think?
The website would not be my only source of income but if it isn’t through WordPress I have a lot more freedom to source advertising on my own and I would run it like a business and not a hobby. I would have to put in a some serious time into cleaning up this blog, delete posts that really aren’t relevant and earlier posts that aren’t helpful to anyone and categorize the posts so they are easier to find. When I started the blog I had no idea how to blog so I didn’t set it up in the best way for people who are looking for something specific. It is quite a mess if I am honest about it. It’s like the way some people keep their house. On the surface it looks clean but don’t look in the cupboards, under the bed or in the fridge!!
Then I will have to dedicate some serious time to promoting myself as a speaker on the topic of domestic abuse, speaking at schools to teens or even speaking at schools as part of their educational program, i know government offices could use someone like me talking to them so they are educated in PTSD and the long term effects of abuse on a person. I KNOW my skills are needed, I just have to find the right market for them and have the self confidence to pursue it and not give up. But I would much prefer putting my efforts into becoming my own boss doing something I love than jumping through government hoops to be made to feel like a charity case and plague on society.
I have been working on my book which I have decided is not going to be my story about my life with James but is actual questions asked on the blog and on Quora (where I am a member and answer questions on domestic abuse, narcissists and psychopaths) and the answers I have given, plus applicable posts that pertain to that question. I have chosen a name for the book and am thinking I would name the blog the same. It is, “No Reim’er Reason”, I have to admit I stole it from my brother because that is what he named the boat I am living on. I think it is brilliant though and so fitting for victims of a narcissist, there seems to be no rhyme or reason to what has happened to them. I don’t have the money to use a publisher but I was reading on Amazon that you can self publish and that is the way I am going to have to go. If anyone has any info or tips on how to do that I would appreciate any input you can give me.