I promise I’m OK (OR: why sadness is still good content)

Image by the brilliant Stuart F Taylor

Recently I’ve been writing about being sad. And while it may make me seem a little mercenary, I have to tell you that sadness makes good content. More than that: sometimes it’s the only content I can produce. Yet when I write about being sad, people often message me to ask “are you OK? Do you want to talk about it? Is there anything I can do?” to which the answers are, respectively, yes, no and yes. For those who might be interested in the minutiae of what it’s like writing a sex blog, here’s a longer answer…

When you write a personal sex blog, sometimes you’re going to bump up against the fact that your personal life isn’t all sunshine and dildo orgies. In the olden days, when I started writing, it wasn’t a big deal to write about the personal stuff that made me sad or angry, because I could be vague about the timing of it, and it was rarely attributable to a specific relationship.

Now, more or less, you pretty much know who I’m talking about if I refer to my other half. If you don’t, go read my second book and catch up on the backstory.

So when I write ‘don’t fall in love‘, or about what heartbreak feels like, people (incorrectly but understandably) assume that my partner and I have broken up, or that one of us has done something so heinous that our relationship can’t possibly survive. They ask me if I’m OK, if I would like to talk, and if there’s anything they can do to help. I’m going to write my answers here so I can link to them in the future.

1. Am I OK?

Yes. The times when I am at my least OK are the times when I cannot write, so as a general rule please assume that if I’m writing, I’m fine.

2. Do you want to talk about it?

No thank you. Firstly because I tend to write my blog posts on a time delay. By the time you’re reading about a particular experience, it’ll usually be quite a long time in the past – anywhere from a fortnight to a year or even longer. So by the time you ask me if I’m OK, I’ll usually have dealt with it and moved on, or be in the process of dealing with it thanks to help from my friends/family/therapist/extensively-stocked drinks cabinet. If you try to keep track of my mood and emotions and the overarching narrative of my relationship via this sex blog, it will make no sense: these posts are not in chronological order, for the simple reason that some stuff is easier to write once time has passed.

The second reason for this is going to sound terribly mean: I’d rather you didn’t ask me because if I don’t know you, I’m not going to tell you more than I’ve told people on this blog. I appreciate the gesture, it’s very kind of you to offer to listen to me pour out my woes, and you are a good person for wanting to help. But asking me is a waste of your precious, kind time, because I have people I speak to about this stuff already, and if I’m honest replying to lots of messages offering help takes away time I could spend seeking the help I feel comfortable accepting.

It’s not that I don’t think you’re a good listener, or a nice person, it’s just that I know good listeners and nice people already – ones who I haven’t built up walls around the way I have with GOTN. Please spend your kindness on those who need it more than I do.

3. Is there anything I can do?

Believe it or not – yes. And here’s where we get to the part that I know makes me a shameless hustler. But I did not get where I am without shameless hustling, so let’s do this.

You can help me by sharing my work.

I mean it. I know sometimes it feels weird to share the sad ones. To click ‘like’ on a post that details heartbreak or misery. But please do it if you enjoyed the post. And I mean ‘enjoyed’ in the broadest sense here: everything from ‘found it useful’ to ‘thought it was nicely written’ or even just ‘realised that a potential break-up may mean GOTN struggles financially, so getting traffic to her blog (which is also her livelihood) will become even more important than it is already.’ Mercenary, I know. But the truth.

Sadness makes good content

By the time I’ve processed and wept and thought about things, and realised I’m ready to put my thoughts on the blog, I’ve probably found a way to make that sadness useful or interesting in some way. Sometimes (though rarely) from an advice perspective, occasionally to change people’s minds if I think I’ve got a point to make, because I think it may help those who are going through similar things or simply because I think I’ve found a neat way to write it that trips easily from my keyboard, and gives me those all-important clicks.

I write the sad stuff not just because I need to get it off my chest (although I do), or because I want those who are also sad to feel a bit less alone (ditto), I also write it because I need to keep adding content. To keep talking and writing and promoting and driving traffic.

Sadness inspires blog posts that make this site more interesting. They help to show people that I’m not just a horny slag who has infinite incredible sex, and never has to deal with any of the shitty stuff: I’m also a person who is fucked up, and fucks stuff up, and fails to deal with it like the powerful boss she desperately wants to be. That content also generates clicks, which generates money, which means I can pay my bills.

Misery sucks. Heartbreak sucks. But it’s all good content. I don’t expect you to agree or see things from my point of view (although if you do, you’re probably either a sex blogger already or potentially interested in becoming one, so I’ll just leave this event link here for you to consider). After all, the vast majority of people don’t spend their time sifting through their emotions to work out which particular slice of joy or spasm of pain will create the best content. But I’ve been doing this for years: it’s my job and I really enjoy it.

I think about this blog during most of my waking hours. Despite the barriers I try desperately to shore up, it still bleeds into my whole life. Before I put my knickers back on after a particularly good fuck, I’ll grab my phone and make notes, because I want to remember how hot it was when he growled “Do you want my fucking come in you?”. When he does silly or romantic things for me, I’ll appreciate not just the intimacy in the moment, but the fact that it may make for good content tomorrow.

And as with the good, so too with the bad. During arguments I’ve remembered specific phrases and thought ‘hmm, I should unpack this later and see if it’d make a good blog post.’ While crying on the stairs, I’ve taken note of every detail of my surroundings, in case I could use any of the sights/sounds/scents as extra colour when I describe the situation on the blog. And one time, during a break-up fuck that left me shuddering and sobbing in his arms, alongside the relief that we’d connected for that one brief moment came a flash of joy that this was something I could blog about.

That post is going up tomorrow. And I know that might seem weird, I’m weird. But I’m OK.



  • Golden Hare says:

    This was really interesting, thanks

  • OxyfromSg says:

    Dealing with sadness is different for everyone anyway. When friends tell me they are sad or have stuff going on I never say “tell me more” or “how can I help?” instead I ask if the want some tea or have they seen Fleabag this week, make them feel that they still have a comfortable place. If they want to tell me more they will.
    And there is nothing wrong with sadness as content, writers and musicians have always done it, just people don’t tend to see blogging in the same way.

  • Molly says:

    *nods knowingly throughout all of this.

    Hugs my friend


  • Lexy says:

    Very well, and kindly, said. 🖤

  • Northern Boy says:

    You write beautifully.

  • fuzzy says:

    I’ve been struggling with not commenting, particularly with regards to #2. Thank you for your answer, and thank you for your excellent and ongoing writing.

  • Hazelthecro says:

    Oh GOTN. Your honesty and humanity just sears on through.

    A huge great lot of people bear you such a huge amount of goodwill, precisely because you are like this. You do make us feel less alone.

    I really hope things suck less for you now, and will get to anti-suck in the fullness of time xx

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