Mother’s Day was brutal.
Not because it was a bad one at our house — it was wonderful, filled with warmth and family and love, elements that make every day, and every holiday, special.
No, it was the posts streaming through my Facebook feed, of some (not all) mothers desperately sharing EVERYTHING their children did for them that day, from the pedicures to the mimosas to the shopping to the hugs and kisses and squeezes and snuggles.
Now while there’s absolutely nothing wrong with these wonderful events, and we understandably want to rejoice in them and share that rejoicing, what’s sad is that I — a relative stranger to most of the people who posted them (not an odd situation on Facebook, incidentally) — heard and saw it all, as if I had been there. Special times with loved ones are just that — extremely special, very personal, highly intimate — and while Facebook and other social media are ready and willing to help us disclose as many elements of our personal lives as we’re willing to put out there, I can’t help but wonder: aren’t there some moments that are so beautiful, so precious, so close to the people involved, that it’s worth not announcing them to the world of social media acquaintances?
Is there anything wrong, and possibly something wise, about keeping some information to ourselves, secure in the knowledge that we are loved, treasured, liked, and valued — regardless of how many Likes we get on a post?
Obviously, based upon the stream of posts, not everyone sees things that way, and the accusation that I am being a grump won’t surprise me. But there’s also this: the information, the photos, the memories, the images, the personal data, go out far, far beyond the limited circle of people we are comfortable interacting with face to face, and if we wouldn’t announce to the shoppers at Walmart, “My little toe is bigger than the one next to it — and my family thinks that’s really funny!” then why do we tell that to strangers?
Thank you for joining me at This Woman Writes, where it is my hope that every person reading this has at least one person in their life who thinks they’re terrific, and does not need to fish for approval from acquaintances like me. Memories with family and friends are treasures worth keeping safe and in a quiet place.
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You are so right! There is another thing, also. I wonder about those who have no one to do these wonderful things for them. People who post gifts given to them by loved ones can’t be thinking about those who have no one to give them gifts or the means to do so. The thoughtlessness of these postings just reminds folks of what they don’t have. The private moments of life should be reserved for those close to you, not the whole world. I am fortunate and blessed with
a family. Not everyone is blessed in this way.
This is why I have left social media. My life has had less anxiety and depression. Facebook has admitted to using their site to manipulate people. Time to wake up! I enjoy my privacy and not knowing everything going on with others. Such a burden gone!
Social media, advertising, movies, magazines, the “news” — they all have their place in manipulation. As ordinary people, it is wise to question all the information and disinformation assaulting us, and Just Say No. I am glad that you have left the merry go round and are finding increased contentment in your life. May this be the experience of many.