Sharing.

nataniel1

 

No one hides their insecurities as well as they think they do. And normally people see right through the strange and crazy things people do to “seem normal”. But the truth is everyone feels what they’re feeling differently. Schopenhauer said: “…the difference in individualities is incalculably great.” Even if you can see right through someone’s act, no one knows what trauma caused that person to wear leopard print leggings, or why she cries in cat food ads. Kindness (or mercy!) is severely under valued in our society. With the rise of trolls, critics, blogs, discussion forums, and memes, we all think we have the right to judge what someone else has put out there. To ridicule or scoff at another user’s honesty is a trendy past time. But just because we don’t get it, doesn’t make it less meaningful to who ever’s experiencing it.

There is a kind side to social media. I have been berated for wearing my heart on my sleeve online many times. But to be honest, I’ve received sincere feedback when I’ve felt really alone, and a tweet was more like a desperate plea sent out in to the universe. Stephen Fry thanked his Twitter followers for their support after his suicide attempt in 2012 and on Facebook a friend saved the life of a suicidal teenager from the other side of the Atlantic! Status updates are supposed to be personal, Facebook itself asks me how I’m feeling?! It doesn’t ask: “What competition are you entering today?” Why aren’t we allowed to say I feel like shit? My advice is to keep your FRIENDS on Facebook, the people who really care. The rest just find your ups and downs amusing.

You can not possibly know what battle is raging on their side of the screen. Why not reach out instead? I have experienced the healing power of a few kind words first hand and it’s a bit like magic for a sad soul. Post pictures of your kid eating peas, lament over the asshole that broke your heart, TYPE IN ALL CAPS, or connect with other people who cry when The Cure plays. Isn’t connecting what social media is all about? How can you connect if you’re not “sharing”?

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