The problem with social media

I remember being a preteen and loving social media. It’s so cool that you can share your thoughts and feelings and your every move with all your friends and family…until 8 years later when you see it on your memories and end up kicking yourself for ever posting about the “funny” conversation you had with friends. Like, no one cares?! But, in the grand scheme of things, this doesn’t even begin to touch on the real problems social media poses.

 

Most parents expect me to make this a post about the terrible effects Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, etc. have on our children and ways we should be dealing with that, but really, this is about how we, as adults and parents, are really the problem.
For one, we’ve created a toxic environment for parents all over. Rather than using social media to connect and support one another, we use it to shove our beliefs and values on one another and to judge one another. I’m not saying this from a holier than thou perspective but rather from a I’ve-done-it-and-still-feel-terrible perspective. I’ve sat in rooms with others and had the conversation about how does blah blah blah with her children and how wrong that is when, in all reality, what I say doesn’t matter and I shouldn’t even be saying it to begin with. What does it matter if she feeds her kid organic food or allows them to have as much candy as they want? We should be respectful of one another’s choices and be there to listen when things go wrong rather than blaming and pointing fingers. Because, believe it or not, there’s not one sure fire way to parent.

 

And on that note, let’s stop bashing people for their political views because, quite frankly, your friends don’t care what your political thoughts and agenda are, and they shouldn’t. If you’re choosing people to hang out with based on their political affiliation, you’re judging once again based on one’s values and beliefs. We all come from different backgrounds and have different ideas and we should not be close minded. I’m not saying you have to agree on everything but rather that we should be accepting of those with different ideas. I love hearing people talk about how the people in Washington can’t get along and make decisions when they’re doing the same thing in their neighborhood.

 

And the worst part of all of this? We’ve normalized treating others based on what they think rather than loving each other and fostering a positive atmosphere. And then, we’re letting that infiltrate our everyday lives. Don’t believe me? How many times have you used a term from social media (i.e. OMG or BRB or Retweet) in everyday conversation? We don’t think about how these things are affecting us until we’re sitting their, mad over what Aunt Suzie posted on <insert issue here>. And then, when our children are getting on as either children or adults, they’re mimicking our actions because we set that example for them.

 

Now, don’t get me wrong, I enjoy social media and there are some really cool things about it. For example, how did you find this post? I love being able to share about our family and all our wellness goals and just what’s happening in our everyday lives. And I love that I can stay connected with those many miles away and be up to date on their lives. There’s so much happiness there but we can’t let that blind us. As adults and parents, we should be creating an atmosphere of love and support. We always complain about all the negative on social media and the bad influence it is on children, but it all starts with us and what we’re doing.

 

XOXO,

Brently Snead

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