This here bringer of the pooper to the fun party

Because it needs to be said

I’m still a little confused as to what time it is, so forgive me now for any typos that might unfurl as I get all this down on paper. I left my hotel room yesterday morning at 5AM DC time, 3AM Salt Lake time, and when I got home I had several hours of work to get done, and I’m just going to go ahead and get this out of the way because I am tired and cranky:

Some of you, and you know exactly who you are, you can go right ahead and suck it.

I had no idea the brouhaha that was going to ensue by announcing that I had been invited by the White House to Washington DC. And I’ll go ahead an be an egotistical bastard and say that had I not been invited that most of the people I just told to suck it would not have even known that there was a forum on Workplace Flexibility going on in the first place. And all the drama and outrage that they spewed online could have been instead directed at whatever issues they have that are unresolved in their own lives.

Because it has nothing to do with me. They have this idea of who Heather Armstrong is and it is based entirely on assumptions. Bad, completely untrue assumptions that they so DESPERATELY want to believe because my success somehow diminishes their own.

Heather Armstrong has it so easy. Heather Armstrong is LOADED. Heather Armstrong has no idea what it is really like to be a working mother because she has an assistant who takes care of her recycling. Blah blah blah blah blah. SHUT UP.

The truth? The truth is that I work my ass off. I hit the ground running at 6AM every morning and I do not stop until I hit the pillow at night. And understand that this is not a pity party, I am not complaining: this is my job and I embrace it and I love it. I embrace the fact that I do not have free time. I do not ever get a day off. I did not get a maternity leave. I can’t take a vacation. Every moment of my life is accompanied by the thought that I have a website to maintain, one that feeds my family, and if I don’t publish they don’t eat.

Also, if I don’t publish, people think I have died. (I appreciate those emails, actually.)

I embrace the knowledge that there are hundreds if not thousands of people who despise me. Thousands of people who have a bad opinion of me and can talk about that opinion in public forums. And then go on to say, well, Heather opened herself up to this, she better take it!

And oh, I do. I take it. And I want to thank you for it. Because it has forced me to take a look at myself and how I treat other people. Because all the shit and misinformed waah-waah-waahing that is aimed at my head has made it so that I will first, before anything else, give someone the benefit of the doubt, and second, never treat anyone the way I have been treated. Never speak about someone the way people speak about me. Especially in a public forum.

Sure, you can probably find me jealously criticizing someone in my archives, but I like to think that I’ve come a long way since then. Because the hate mail and the hate sites and the bickering twitters about Heather Armstrong, all the crazy assumptions about me and my family that I see being tangled and weaved in ways that are specifically made to make someone feel better about their own insecurities, all of this has made me so much more human.

Thank you, those of you who need to suck it.

Also? Thank you to those of you who do give me the benefit of the doubt. You are quite simply the reason my family has food to eat. You give me strength and motivation to continue working my ass off. You are the ones I want to take on this roller coaster ride. I want to share all of this with you: the unexpected trips to DC, the book tours, the Peter Frampton sightings.

Thank you for coming on this ride with me. And I have said this before, but I really do feel like I could sit down with any of you and talk into the late hours of the night over a beer or four. Sprite, if you’re Mormon.

Those who came to see me at Old Ebbitt Grill in DC on Wednesday night proved just that, and I will count that as one of the most enjoyable nights of my life, one that ended up with a giant basket of chili cheese fries at Ben’s Chili Bowl with a group of people I wish lived next door.

Thank you for the handshakes, the hugs, the email, the virtual fist pumps, the handwritten letters of support. Most of all, thank you for nodding and laughing along. The idea of you on the other side getting why I sometimes overindulge in the shift key is the reason I love this job.

  • Allie

    WORD. Haters need to Suck It! I love me some Dooce.

  • juliejackson

    First!
    First to say to hell with the haters. The better you do, the more the jealous freaks crawl out of the woodwork. And you’re doing GREAT. Keep it up! We’re hooked!! xoxo

  • CrisLawson

    You lost your f**king job over this site. I’m totally thrilled that you’ve turned it into a positive, moneymaking entity. I like that the employer who fired you probably bangs their head on their desk daily when they hear all the neat things you’re in on now.

    You made it to the White House. How awesome is that? Anyone who is hating you for it is plainly jealous. Like crabs in a bucket, they try to drag you back down. Ignore them and enjoy your success. You’ve earned it.

    P.S. I don’t care how much money you make off this site. I don’t want to know. I’m glad my visiting helps you feed your family and afford your home. I don’t care how many ads there are or aren’t; nothing is going to stop me from visiting.

  • agraber

    Right on.

  • juliejackson

    p.s. Where can we see your DC appearance?

  • bwsf

    Bravo, Heather. I felt so bad for you when I saw the onslaught of stupid coming at you. But really? I feel worse for those other people, not being able to be happy for someone’s success. When did people get so bitter and entitled?

    Just keep up the good work, girl.

  • Jess F

    Love you, Heather.

  • sonya

    And you said it very very well. You also said it with humor. I love reading your blog.

  • the mighty jimbo

    love it when you take off the gloves!

    go heather!

  • Jessica Eiden Smedley

    Heather, you don’t need to justify yourself. I was so excited for you when I learned of your trip to DC and watched the feed with pride. PRIDE, I SAY! AND I’VE NEVER EVEN MET YOU!

    You are wonderful and know that you have a shit-ton of supporters out here.

  • Heather J

    Fist bump!

    Your community will take the haters down. Just let us at them. Hold us back…

  • erinlyn

    Right on, Heather. I’m a graduate student, and I had a discussion a few months ago with some folks about the unique pleasures and pains of being a grad student. Because it’s really hard, but we also know how lucky we are to have the privilege to study what we enjoy. But that privilege doesn’t elide the difficulties we experience. Are we working on a factory line? No. Are we in the military, under threat of being dispatched to fight a war? No. But you know what? It’s still hard.

    And in lots of ways, it’s hard because people think it’s easy. People think grad students get to sit around all day thinking, reading, writing. They think we get summers off! Holidays off! It’s a luxury!

    And the flexibility is nice, but there are no days off. Even days when you don’t have to be in the office or classroom, you should always be working–thinking, reading, writing. There’s always the pressures of producing hanging over your head.

    All of this to say…people should, in fact, suck it. Because none of us knows, truly, what others experience. And I often think that the pressures you face must be a lot like the “hidden” pressures faced by grad students. So I’m with you, and SO many other people are, I promise.

  • jwag68

    {{{{Heather}}}}

  • hayofray

    [Applause] Well said.

  • shestumbledin

    I’m thrilled for your success Heather! It’s so obvious to us out here who aren’t in some sort of competition with you that those who criticize your every tweet (or choice of tights) 😉 are simply jealous or just bitter angry people.

    I’m also happy that you had such a great experience at your impromptu meet up in DC. As much vitriol that’s spewed your way I was honestly concerned when you posted the location.

  • scubajunk

    *hugs* from Canada ;o)

  • KatJMoll

    Do we ever leave high school?
    I want to thank you for your hard work. Also want to thank you for many laugh-out-louds in front of my computer. Keep up the good work and take a vacation for God sake!

  • SiobhanT

    Thank you for telling me about the Workplace Flexibility Forum. You are right, I wouldn’t have known about it had you (and John you twittered where it would ACTUALLY work) not told us about it.

    I didn’t get to see more than the first half but it was encouraging.

  • josephine

    Haters can suck it. Congrats on getting to DC – I hope it was a productive meeting!!

    Kudos to you for all you do. Keep it up!

  • Leball

    Hell Yea! Haters need to SUCK IT!

    Love you to pieces and you are such a huge INSPIRATION!!!

  • hoskas

    Fuck ’em all! And SUCK ON THAT you jealous biatches xxx

  • Greysmom

    For every 1 lover there are probably going to be a hundred haters… jealousy is an ugly beast, and yes we would all love to have your life, beautiful children, wonderful husband, really nice house, job you can do from said house:), and an assistant to take care of our recycling… BUT you worked to get there, it didn’t fall into your lap, so i think people should respect that.
    I guess some people just can’t get passed the fact that their best just maybe isn’t good enough to cut it:)

    and i would like to thank you for standing up for women just like you that are trying to make something of themselves and still be able to enjoy their families. although i’m Canadian and the forum you were at doesn’t directly affect me, i believe womens and family rights all around the world are all indirectly affect by one another.

  • LaurenFrench

    Ignore the hate, keep going and never look back!

  • Cecily

    WORD.

  • nedens

    I think it’s great you had the opportunity to go to speak in D.C. I’m sorry for all those that treat you so poorly, Heather!

  • JustLinda

    I tweeted (excuse me!) about your visit to the White House but I was totally trying to be funny. I hope that lame attempt at humor came across and wasn’t misinterpreted (if you even saw it at all). But I’m sure this isn’t about lil’ ol’ me because I admire what you have done here and I am in alignment with your thinking about how pathetic the haters are.

    Git on with yer bad self, Heather. Take that shit to task whenever you can. Let it make you stronger, wiser, and more compassionate.

  • Jennie86

    It’s so sad that people are so miserable in their own lives that they feel the need to criticize you. Ridiculous.

    That being said, you totally rocked DC. Wish I could have made it!

  • aingman

    Virtual hug!!! Mean people suck and it’s true — their craziness can only make you stronger and reaffirm how you don’t want to be — so yeah, I thank the crazies too! p.s. I think you’re great.

  • cassidy.stockton

    We’re here for you! I wonder what life would be like if we all had to receive feedback on our actions. Thanks for putting yourself out there, you make our days better.

  • opazazzyzen

    WHOOOO let it alllll out! People are cruel- you have deserved everything you have received. You actually deserve a break tbh

  • Serephin

    Dear Dooce,

    You, your family, and your website are the cat’s pajamas. As for the trolls and twits whom vex you, a word of advice: fuck ’em, feed ’em fish.

  • KatieMick

    Seriously, what the hell is wrong with people?

    F*ck the haters and keep doing what you do.

  • Essembee

    SHIFT KEY RULES!
    As do you.

  • jon

    @juliejackson you can see the video here:

    http://www.whitehouse.gov/photos-and-video/video/workplace-flexibility-forum-breakout-4

    You can also enjoy the part where Heather brings up maternity leave in Canada and hear the gasps of disbelief!

  • Amanda Patchin

    Totally missed out on the hate storm and I’m glad I did.

    Thanks for being so strong.

  • linz_g

    I know this is going to sound crazy, but reading this kind of gave me goosebumps (accompanied by the gorgeous breeze blowing in my open windows). But I have completely loved reading your blog since I stumbled upon it via a “follow this Twitter” recommendation, and since then I have gone through and read your archives and felt like I’ve lived with you, enjoying your photos and blogs and ups and downs. I wish we could hang out! I feel sorry for the people who have to cut you down to feel better about themselves – mostly because since they are so busy being d*bags they don’t get to enjoy all the awesome entertainment you provide.

    Keep it up, Heather. You’re awesome.

  • girlmeetsgeek

    In all honesty: There will always be people who want to diminish your flame. You, Heather- by far are one of the reasons I’ve been successful. Never before has a woman been so witty, human and willing to bare her soul online before. You paved the way for bloggers, writers and mothers. The fact that you were invited to the White House speaks multitudes about WHO YOU ARE and the value you bring to every reader. I’ve been reading you for years and years. There’s no competition becuase you’ve simply out-classed them all. Good for you for standing up for yourself. You’ve got an army behind you.
    Kate-Madonna
    (GirlMeetsGeek)

  • GrandRGrand

    I would totally have a beer or four with you anytime, (clearly not Mormon here) and love the fact that you live your life by your rules in spite of all the haters.

    That rock I live under shielded me from knowing that people were giving you a hard time… imagine that!

    You can borrow my rock anytime you like. It’s completely soundproof! 😉

    Keep going, I know you will. You are AMAZING! AMAZING! REALLY FREAKIN AMAZING! AND you are beautiful too! (Take that haters!)

    Totally Team HEATHER!

  • morgenthaler

    I’ve said it before:
    If you and Jon ever travel to Copenhagen, Denmark, you’lll have a place to stay and a guide.

    Cheers.

  • gitzengirl

    I was so excited when I read the tweet that you were going to the White House. Immediate dread followed when I knew how much the haters would unite.

    It will never matter how tough you are or how long you have this blog… hate gnaws into the depths of you because you’re human. And I despise that people do that to you.

    Sometimes telling them to suck it just doesn’t feel big enough, does it? Just remember that some of us are out here, thrilled with your adventures AND your success 🙂

  • kristanhoffman

    RIGHT. ON.

    Also: WRITE ON.

    Look, your love of the shift key is contagious!

    (That, and so much more. Thanks for sharing your life with us, Heather. Your honesty is like a bucket of cold but refreshing water; your humor is the towel.)

  • jellenp

    I am sorry I didn’t come meet you at Old Ebbitt. I was tired and looked like crap and needed to go home and walk my dog. Oh and I was intimidated. But I think you are awesome, and I was thrilled that the White House thinks highly of someone I think is awesome. Don’t know if you can escape all the suckage that comes with being out there like you are, but also respect your right to snap back.

    Anyway, that’s my mash note for the day. Hope you will come back to DC sometime without all the nonsense (although since you went to the Chili Bowl there may be no other reason to return!)

  • ameliaknapp

    Well said. If folks spent as much time working on their own lives as they do hating on yours, the world just may become a better place.

  • tiffany

    *fistbump of respect*

    I’m sorry I didn’t make it out to Old Ebbitt to hang out. But I hope you enjoyed our town as much as I enjoy your site.

    Everybody’s got to pay the bills in the way that works best for them. This is what’s working for you, and good for you for it. I run a group site about DC, and every once in a while, when thinking about the work-to-money ratio of the site, I dreamily sigh, “Dooce.com supports a family of four.” And then I think about how much work our site is and I think, “My god, how does she find time to leave the house?”

  • autumn

    Oh Heather, we love you. Seriously. It must suck so very much to hear all the nasty comments, and you’re usually so good about letting it roll off – I can’t imagine what was said this time to get under your skin. Be assured, the rest of us love you dearly and are proud of the things you do, and are cheering you on.

  • mrs.notouching

    Right?! I was so EXCITED when I heard your news and then shocked with the online reactions and oh the twitter drama for your mama!… why? Of course you were a great choice for the panel duh! Have they not been reading your website? Anyway, glad to see this post. Lots of love to you and your family.

  • GraniteGirl

    Heather you TOTALLY ROCK!!!!!!!!!!! Lots of capital letters and exclamation points coming your way!!!!!!!!!!!

    All your haters can totally suck it! I think that all of your faithful Doocebags should kick all of their asses! And the only reason they’re haters is because they’re jealous.

    I think we should all get together, drink some bourbon, and laugh at how short-sighted they all are!

  • spaceninja

    This wallpaper seems fitting:

    http://ideas.veer.com/skinny/post/9174

    Haters, they are gonna hate.

  • marguex

    I’ve been a lurker for years until I just registered… I finally had to weigh in. I admire the grace with which you handle the haters, but I’m really pleased to see you standing up for yourself, your career, and your family. You do a great job and you deserve your success. So way to fucking go and ignore the jealous people that just wish they had the sort of eye for this growing industry that you do.

    Anyway, take care of yourself. It sounds like you need a break from this and maybe a nap.

    Also, how cool is it that I read this and by the time I finished registered and came back to comment it had gone from 3 comments to 43? That alone should tell you something.

  • sarahmichelef

    1) People are dicks.
    2) Thanks Jon for the link. I was sad that I couldn’t be at a computer to see it live. Because this website, the messageboards? This is part of the 21st century media and labor landscape and THAT is why the white house invited you.
    3) See point 1.