Each year on my blog’s anniversary, I have a look back on how far I’ve come, and share my most popular and noteworthy blog posts. It’s a good way for me to keep a record of how my blog is advancing (or devolving!), and to share interesting posts people may have missed who are new to my blog.
I like to start with a quick look at my stats. I’ve had 354,506 hits on my website so far, up from 235,000 this time last year. My Facebook page has 639 fans, up from 442 last year. My Twitter followers are at 1340, up from 1051. But the stat that means the most to me is how many people have signed up to my blog – and that number has gone up from 203 to 1088! Feeling the love ❤
My most popular post this time last year, continues to be the most popular: “Distinguishing Giftedness from Aspergers; will the DSM-5 help?” My previous most commented on post was “The Privilege Game,” but is now “ABA, regrets, and a question of happiness.” I still find myself thinking a lot about giftedness and its relationship to autism, as well as the controversies surrounding ABA, so I intend to return to both topics in future posts.
It’s a little disappointing that none of my posts written in the past year feature as most popular in either regard, but perhaps it’s a good sign too that my posts stand the test of time (look at me finding the upside!) The most popular post then from the past year, is the very recent one on psychological damage, which you can see two posts down from this one.
At this point I typically share the sites of my favourite autism bloggers too, but they have either completely stopped writing in their blogs, or now write very infrequently; whenever I go to update my links list in the sidebar, I find many more that have outright disappeared since I last checked on them (do click through on the sidebar though if you’d like to check some out). I’m not entirely sure why that sad trend is happening, but I do know those who I have had the chance to talk to about their departure, almost always cite the in-fighting they often see at work in the autism community. It is hard enough living in the autism world, it is hard too to find the time and energy to share those experiences and consequent views, harder still to be attacked when you talk openly and honestly about what you feel and go through.
I also find it draining when I come under attack, as is bound to happen when you write on something many people are understandably passionate about and yet can experience so very differently. I try to focus on the support I receive from those who read my blog, rather than the fly-by-nights who only pop in to dump abuse, and I’ve been lucky enough that my readers tend to be of the thoughtful and compassionate variety. I never take my readers for granted, I feel honoured that strangers and friends want to read and share what I have to say, so thank you to everyone who is reading this and who reads my blog generally – you are appreciated and you keep me going. I hope you are still with me on my 5th blogging anniversary a year from today 🙂