It never fails. Every time I open Instagram or log on to Facebook, I see one of my friends is up to something again. Traveling. Partying. Eating with friends. Going out on dates. I love how most of my peers are enjoying their twenties and making the most out of this time in life. I really do. But (you knew the but was coming) I wonder sometimes if they’re truly creating memories for themselves or is this is partially a facade for the ‘Gram. Let me elaborate.
Recently, I had brunch with my mom. You wouldn’t know that unless you asked me what I did on Sunday. This is because I did not ask the waiter to take our photo nor did I ask my mom to take a picture of me enjoying my meal. I don’t need a pat on the back (or Facebook like or Instagram love) because I spent time with my mother. I let that moment be (beyond writing about it right now) because I believe everything does not need to be broadcasted. Stopping that moment to share for social gratification (whether intentional or not), in my opinion, is just bizarre.
Don’t get me wrong. There is nothing odd about wanting to take a picture to help document the memory. I believe it’s okay to upload these photos too, but the presentation and frequency of these kinds of posts can make one inquire why you share what you share. Like, is there something you’re trying to overcompensate for through these pics? Maybe the constant photos of date nights with the new boo is an attempt to make your ex jealous and your family know that you’re not a lesbian. Or the extravagant vacation updates with the shallow quotes could be a way to show your high school friends from Smalltown, USA that you’ve made it out and don’t have plans to return permanently. That’s real.
I guess we’re all trying to project something, one way or the other, right? Our social media accounts are fleeting representations of ourselves to friends, family members, acquaintances, and colleagues. This is the one place where we can appear to be who we desire to be—experienced globetrotters, doting lovers, and aspiring professionals. I still think it’s a bit weird though.
Photo by Julia Caesar