Just because we can, should we? Think about that. The saying can be applied to almost anything in your life. Just because we can spend our entire paycheck on materialistic goods, should we? Just because we can take advantage of someone for our own personal gain, should we? Just because we can eat an entire pint of ice cream, should we? That last one I'm still struggling with the answer to, lol. However, today I don't want to apply that to my portion control issues, I want to talk about social media. Social media is amazing; hell, I hope to pursue a career in it some day. The fact that I can interact with brands and fashion bloggers from LA or NYC, experience a friends trip to Europe through Snapchat stories, or simply just connect with a new person on Instagram because we have similar style or interests, is just downright cool. But on the flip side, the fact that I can stalk someones Instagram and create a predisposed judgement of them before meeting, remain friends with someone on Facebook who I'm no longer friends with in real life (or since we're talkin' social media, #IRL), or pull up my best friends locations at any given moment and find out where they are and why they're not answering my phone calls, in my opinion, is not so cool. Social media has made us more connected than we ever have been, but it's also made us more invasive. It's made us more invasive than we should be.
I've never considered myself an invasive person. I value my own privacy and because of that, respect other people's privacy. In a world where any doubts or insecurities can be reassured through a quick look at someones snapchat, I've always tried my best to choose trust over intrusiveness. But the truth is, in a world where the option to be invasive is so convenient, we're all bound to slip up. At some time or another, we all will slip up. We'll look for more, go to far, and succumb to the accessibility that social media has to offer. If you're reading this right now and you're thinking, "what do you even mean by invading someones privacy through social media?" This is what I mean:
Think back to an ex. Whether it was an ex boyfriend/girlfriend or an ex friend, think about the fact that you, for one reason or another, stopped having a relationship with them, but you can easily pull up their twitter account and check their likes or go to their Instagram and see what they've been up to. And for those of you who are like, "well, I blocked them/don't follow them anymore" do not act like you don't have ways or resources of still looking at their social media. You do.
Have you ever thought about what a break up or the end of a friendship would be like without social media? It would be an actual break up or end of a friendship. It would, more often than not, be the end. You wouldn't be able to know whats happening? on their twitters, you wouldn't be able to watch their friends snapchats to see where they and their friends are going on a Friday night, and you wouldn't be constantly reminded of that person, which keeps you in this sort of weird half in, half out position. Like, I no longer speak to you on a personal level, but I know what you ate for breakfast because of your Insta story. That sort of half in, half out.
It's mind boggling if you really think about it. No wonder it's harder for people to move past things, people, places, and even experiences- we're constantly reminded of them on our social medias and if we're not, we can easily find out. We will find out because it's natural for humans to wonder about people and things of their past. But now, social media makes what should be left in the past confusing. We see 'the best version of people's lives on social media' and are reminded of the best versions of past relationships. We end up forgetting and neglecting the things that weren't so great; the reasons why those things are a part of our past in the first place. It makes sense, keeping something in the past is so hard to do when their constantly remaining in your present. So, that brings me back to my saying: just because we can see how somebody we stopped talking to is doing, should we? Just because we can check up on someone without them actually knowing, should we? Just because we can see constant reminders of someone or something we know is bad for us or want to keep in the past, should we?
It makes me wonder how different of a person or how different my life would currently be if we didn't have the ability to relive or revisit our past relationships through social media. Would I be more nostalgic? Would I be less confused? I'm not sure it would make life easier or harder. But I do know that it would be a lot more difficult to stay stuck on a past relationship if you didn't see their new post on Instagram pop up on your explore page every so often.