Now before someone bites my head off, let me put it out there that this is an opinion piece. It is based on my loose understanding of what is to be private and considered sacred – of course everyone is to decide for him/herself what part of their life they keep private. But for arguments sake, please do read along…
My concern has less to do with WHAT people share on social media, and more to do with the reason WHY people share what they share… motive and not action you see. Social media can be addictive and toxic if we are not cautious. When you post a selfie on Instagram, for example, you get excited when your followers react to it positively. Your brain releases feel good hormones as a reward, just as it does when one takes some drugs. I’m no expert on brain chemistry but I can understand how this “social media high” can become addictive.
We spend hours on social media, subconsciously comparing our mundane moments with our friends “highlight reels”. Most of us understand that people will only post the best parts of their lives for the world to see, perfectly filtered to impress; but how many of us can honestly say we have never compared our unfiltered selves to the perfection on our feeds? Even research suggests that social media has contributed to the rise of depression, anxiety and other mental illnesses. Some of us will go as far as living out our fantasy lives on these virtual platforms, all while neglecting the very real people around us (our immediate family and friends).
I realize that social media can be a great tool to connect with loved ones who might be far (I know this first-hand and I am very grateful for WhatsApp video calls), and I suppose this is the other motive for sharing… to connect and keep in touch with friends and family. Humans are made to relate and connect with one another, so this need to constantly connect makes absolute sense.
Question is: where do we draw the line? What makes it to public social media spaces and what stays in the DMs? What aspects of your marriage/ relationship should make it to social media, and which should be kept sacredly between you and your partner? What about moments shared with family? Child birth? Where do we draw the line?
Yours in ✍🏾