I talked to one of my dearest friends this past week, who I have known since 6th grade I believe. I was telling her about all the things that have been going on with Press and the challenges that we have and continue to face. We started going back in time to things that happened when we were that age and honestly it made me know without a doubt I am so thankful that I grew up in a time with NO social media, no technology, absolutely nothing, but a pencil, paper and a phone that hung on a wall in the kitchen.
We both agreed, what kids endure and go through now a days is far more traumatic than what we ever had to deal with. Yes, we can all think of a bully that was in our school, or who the wrong group of people might have been, but can you imagine if you grew up with social media? How all of that magnifies by a million times? If you are in a fight with a friend, everyone knows by the click of a button? Anything you say or do is captured and sent out to the world? I think the worst part is there is NO one teaching these kids about what you put out there is OUT there, to stay. It doesn’t go away even if deleted. We also talked about how kids turn into zombies with their phones, or whatever means they have to social media. That they are NOT even in the same world as we are, they might give you a grunt, a moan, or nothing at all. That their every waking moment is focused on how many likes or whose snap is waiting for them. They have become totally lost from living. I can not tell you how much I have and continue to learn from this experience. I thought I had a handle on what Press was doing and who she was as a person, but honestly, if you are not a strong enough person, (which most preteens are not) you get sucked into this fantasy world of social media. We also talked about mental health, and when you are growing up you are not equipped to deal with all of this stuff that social media brings with it. I started reading different articles and was totally shocked, but not surprised that when SnapChat began, depression also rose in teens and preteens. Totally makes sense. Thinking back to my day, yes maybe people heard rumors, or knew you and your boyfriend broke up, but it was a she said/ he said thing, nothing to prove anyone right or wrong. Now, there are texts, screen shots, pictures, the list goes on and there is NO escaping what you have said or what you have done. I have so much empathy for my girl, I don’t know and blessed to not have ever had to know what it is like to live that way. Me and my friend both agreed their are obvious pros and cons to our time and now, but really there are many more pros on our list.
Moving forward I will start talking more about what has been going on with Press and what we have and continue to have to face with this whole experience. For me the bottom line is, I want my girl back, I want her happy, I want her to have self love and honestly I don’t ever want social media in her life, till I know she is in a good place and is strong enough to handle what is all out there. My age, we all survived without it, we understand what it all means today, but can you imagine what our lives would have been back then, IF there was social media? I think we would all agree we would be different people today, that our childhood and teen years would not have been as good as they were. I feel I lived my life, it didn’t play out with my friends on phone, it was talking, calling and writing notes, all things that take effort and a thought process. What would you chose? Would you rather grow up today? Or in a time when things were a lot easier?
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