Don’t Believe Everything You See on Facebook

Yesterday was kind of a rough day for me. I’m going to complain for a minute here. We’re all sick, having contracted a virus from Princess Playground Germs. Willa seems to have gotten it worse than everyone: when she’s awake, she whines, and she’s not sleeping very well either. I let Charlotte play with my iPad most of the day so that I could comfort Willa (I’ve sort of given up on the “no screen time” rule–for Charlotte, anyway). I had a phone interview in the afternoon, and although my mom was able to keep the girls and the dogs quiet during the call, it still didn’t go very well (there was a distracting echo on the line and I can’t hear very well anyway because of the congestion, so I wasn’t very articulate… and I’m pretty sure they want someone else for the position anyway). At the end of the day, I was exhausted and feeling sorry for myself.

After the girls were finally asleep, I took some time for myself to edit the few photos I took during the day. I posted them on Facebook and then looked at them over and over (because that’s mainly what I do in my spare time: browse my own photos on Facebook. I might need a more productive hobby). And the thought occurred to me that the photos made my day look pretty great. Feeding the baby some interesting Italian food, watching the baby play with my mom… I mean, just BEING HERE in ITALY sounds pretty amazing. And it’s really a privilege. I didn’t even post photos of the incredibly delicious chili my dad made for dinner last night. I wonder if there are any leftovers. Hmm.

So my point is that we post the best moments on Facebook. Sure, we all know Debbie Downers who complain too much or post depressing things on your news feed (“Always there to tell you ’bout a new disease, a car accident, or killer bees. You beg her to spare you, ‘Debbie, please!’ but you can’t stop Debbie Downer!” Whatever happened to Rachel Dratch? Oh, I just looked it up: Wikipedia says she wrote a book and had a baby. Good for her). But I think most of my Facebook friends and I try hard to cultivate a certain image for ourselves by untagging unflattering photos and composing carefully thought-out status updates. I think it’s important to keep that in mind when you’re feeling like other people’s lives are more glamorous than your own. This article also points out that if you’re using Facebook for passive browsing, it’ll make you unhappy. You’re better off contributing, commenting… just participating in the community instead of watching everyone making themselves look good.

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