(sillyliss, I am adjusting these a bit!)
What are your reasons are for writing -- therapy, social activity, record of events, keeping in touch?
When I started this LJ, it was a bit of a status symbol. Getting an lj required an invite and I managed to con thwack into giving me one of his. LJ was always about documenting my life - starting at the time, with my college life, then moving onto internships and co-ops, and now work --- and ALWAYS social life. It was also helpful with communicating with friends and organizing plans and trips and other stuff like that. While living at UC, we all had LJ and used it to alert each other about apartment stuff and also organize apartment activities and such.
Do your real life friends and family read your journal?
A lot of my LJ friends are real life friends and a family member as well. My family and extended family know about lj and I try to post unlocked entries about general stuff that is "up" with me. All work-related posts are friends locked so I can speak freely (and sometimes vent).
Do you specifically keep your journal from them so you have space apart from them?
LJ was never intended as a space to be separate from anyone in my life - if anything, it was a place to bring together different parts of my life (college friends, high school friends, and family), however, I have used many different friends groups to keep certain personal topics private.