Sign in

Curious creature, pursuer of passion, unbeliever in limiting or lengthy bios. Email me at hollybradshaw.writer@gmail.com.

Silencing your readers’ voices on Medium when they disagree means you can dish out criticism, but you can’t take it (or learn from it)

Image by Christopher Ross from Pixabay

I’ve been blocked by two writers since I joined Medium about three years ago.

In both cases, the writers were outspoken and had strong (some would say cruel/judgmental) opinions, and they didn’t like that I disagreed with their stances.

Before I get deep into my gripe, I want to be clear and state that I believe it’s perfectly acceptable (and encouraged) to block people or delete comments that are hurtful, harmful, threatening, etc.

If someone is bullying or cruel, or doing something like spreading dangerous disinformation, then their comment should be deleted and they should be blocked. …


Searching for motivation after trauma

Image by Anastasia Gepp from Pixabay

I’ve always wanted to do a boudoir photoshoot. I find them to be empowering for women — not to mention a truly beautiful artform.

I love photos that show off the beauty and sexuality of women of every shape and size. And I especially love lingerie fashion.

About a month ago, I came across a social media ad for a company called All Things Boudoir. It was founded by one woman in Colorado, who eventually scaled her business until it had national reach in cities across the country.

The website was informative, beautiful, and professional, and there were sessions available…


Where did my passion go?

Photo by Sasha Freemind on Unsplash

“How many times a week would you say you drink?”

My old general practitioner had just retired, and this was my very first physical with the new doc. I hated to disappoint him with my answer, but I knew I would.

“Mmm…maybe three to four…sometimes five nights a week?” I said.

Does anyone ever really answer that question honestly? Now he’s going to ask how many drinks I have a week. I just know it.

“How many drinks a week, would you say?”

I knew it!

Do I go with honesty and say fifteen to twenty, or should I lessen…


When you like people sometimes, but not all the time

Photo by Marvin Meyer on Unsplash

Many of us dream of successfully escaping the 9-to-5 grind.

But I dreamed of jumping into it.

After three years of freelance editing and copywriting, I still wasn’t earning what I needed to properly take care of my family. I couldn’t afford health insurance, I couldn’t pay down my massive debt, and something as common as a necessary car repair would financially break me for months.

I was bringing in about $32,000 a year for me and my son, before taxes. And where I live, that just wasn’t cutting it.

I was also working all the time.

My friends and…


Returning to marriage after a devastating betrayal

Photo by SHVETS production from Pexels

“I feel like…like I have no feelings.” Oops. I realize I’ve just contradicted myself to my therapist. You can’t really feel like you have no feelings, can you? The pedantic editor in me makes a correction.

“I mean, I have feelings. Or, I did. Now I just feel numb about everything that’s happened between us. Apathetic.”

It’s our very first session. I hate to make her think I have no emotion and I’m a cold, heartless bitch when it comes to my husband. But, honestly, that’s kind of where I’m at.

“I’m not sure if it’s something that comes with…


When irrational thoughts make your world smaller

Photo by ThisIsEngineering from Pexels

I’ve never seen a Star Wars film.

Really. It’s true.

I don’t wear this badge of dishonor with pride. I mean, it’s certainly a conversation starter when I meet new people — just not necessarily the good kind.

If they’re a fan, they look at me like I’m a creature from outer space. They remain polite (this fandom is honestly one of the friendliest I’ve encountered), but I can tell that on some unspoken level, I’ve lost a bit of respect.

Even if they aren’t diehard fans, they’ve seen at least one or more films, so they’re still shocked.

Either…


My Sexy Research with Medium’s Sweethearts, Emma and Jake Austin

Photo by Andrea Piacquadio from Pexels

When I first started out on Medium, I knew I wanted to write honest and vulnerable essays about love, sex, and relationships — among other things.

I very quickly stumbled across Emma Austin and her sexy and sensual musings. I followed her work and felt inspired by how she was making a space for herself as a smart woman writer who could give sound sex advice and also entertain.

Next came Emma’s podcast, which was even more inspiring. I loved listening to the banter between her and her husband, Jake Austin. I listened while driving (as long as my teenage…


My husband’s emotional mistress threatened to “out” me in a sex scandal

Photo by ThisIsEngineering from Pexels

I have no words.

I have a million words.

This is how I’ve felt all week. This head-spinning whiplash from speechless to helpless to racing thoughts that just won’t quit.

Last week, I discovered text messages in my husband’s phone that immediately set the course of our relationship in a downward spiral. I had just switched his service to the new phone I’d gotten him, and he left his old one with me, still working and full of all his online text messages.

I confronted him first, and this helped things because he agreed to move out and give me…


His emotional affair has gone way too far — and now I have to confront him

Photo by Ivan Samkov from Pexels

It’s been two days since I’ve read the texts. Two difficult, uncomfortable days full of emotional whiplash.

I was shocked when I found the messages on my husband’s old phone. Just a couple of days prior, I’d bought him a new one with more storage space because his old one was running so poorly. I had to set it all up for him and switch his account over (it took hours).

My curiosity is notorious. I already knew he’d been having an emotional affair with this woman, and that they are best friends. …


You were my ultimate — I was your consolation prize.

Photo by Olya Kobruseva from Pexels

At first, your love saved me.

I was drowning. Dying in a relationship that I was afraid to leave. I was afraid of his anger, his abuse, his retribution. But I did get out, and you were waiting on the other side.

I fell in love with you the first second I saw you.

Love at first sight is very real, at least for me. It might last for a minute and be gone. Or, it might last for over a decade.

Of course, I didn’t actually know you yet. I didn’t know how well we’d immediately hit it off…

Holly Bradshaw

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store