Society and social media have a strange place in our daily lives. They made it as a way to connect with friends or family. Especially in the cases of living far from one another. But in the era of 2022, it's more similar to a cesspool of despair. Whether it's to slam on others' opinions online or eavesdrop and "spy" into the shared day to day of a friend or family member. These days, social media is an expectation by the masses. If you don't keep your friends or family added, then there are problems. If you don't have a presence, then you're suspicious.
I know many, and I too speak from experience, have amazing friends in the digital space. People who genuinely cheer you on. Who hope you succeed. It's strange we come to rely on random people through screens to help get us through the day but we cannot rely on our family or friends to be present and there. What a backwards concept.
Despite this strange phenomena this is what my life feels like. I often feel ostracized from my family and events. I'm the last to know anything, or hear it via word of mouth. I'm fairly confident people who associate with my IRL are embarrassed by it. I don't think folks want to be associated with me in this region.
I'll share my ideas regarding life, issues, and etc on facebook and be branded an extreme radical. I'm ignored and unengaged with. Meanwhile, I can post a picture of my children and bam 50 likes and a dozen comments. This bothers me massively.
Meanwhile, on isntagram or tiktok I share the same opinion and people cheer me on. I'm sent messages thanking me for sharing my opinions. Or personal messages of appreciation as my message, comments, and post helped them get through the day. Or gave them the courage and strength to keep going.
How can the same idea be treated in such strict contrast. It's easy to say "oh that's just facebook vs instagram". As the person who has to live in that reality it's extremely painful. I essentially live in a bubble that doesn't want me in the bubble. Whereas, everyone outside of it is cheering me on and hoping I'll succeed.
It's mentally exhausting. Digital relationships are powerful and incredible things. But for me, I need IRL people to share that view point, and I just don't have it. Instead, I'm slowly feeling crazy for who I am and what I believe or stand in. I'm left out of things or specifically not talked to because my scope of life is so far outside their own.
Even this blog post. I know my digital friends will see it. Thanks for always coming here and being in my corner. But then people IRL, will they end up here? No. They won't.
I have to keep a positive demeanor in family functions and social circles. Otherwise I'm "too much" because people don't want to talk about the struggles. People here don't understand imposter syndrome, they can't even fathom what it is. Some of them did find their way onto my instagram once, but told me I shouldn't post about my mental issues online. That it wasn't appropriate and no one wants to read about my whining online.
There is only so much a person can bear. Only so many mental battles someone can fight and walk away from.
If you've read ATTICUS, you'll be familiar with this image. Because I wrote an entire book on the concept of inner struggle. And let me tell you, that nightmare is growing stronger each day again. But with no mental stability, the ground is crumbling away once more. If push comes to shove, I'll have to hope I can survive myself once more. One of the hardest battles anyone has to deal with is the one where they are left alone to fight off themselves.
If you've found your way here and are struggling too. Hang in there.
You are loved.
You are valued.
You have meaning.
We want you here.
I'll try to keep reminding myself of that too.