A Mama’s Comfort Camp member shared this link to a post about how fake everyone is on FaceBook and I found myself both nodding my head and laughing as I read about the author’s chaotic and familiar Saturday. Then I started wondering if I’m guilty of FakeBooking (thanks to @ErinMargolin of @gaydadproject for the perfect word for it). After all, in my header photo, everyone looks happy and the background is picturesque (never mind that it still says “Happy Holidays”).
And in my new profile picture, I have makeup on and my hair curled. Both of these things are rare and not at all representative of my everyday life. This is more like it:
And yet I don’t really want this as my profile pic. So does that mean I’m faking it?
Hmmmm… I tend to share the bad along with the good – pictures of my dishes in the sink and trashed house. Status updates about teething and the crummy weather. Posts about mental illness. I like to think I’m pretty honest about what my life is like.
I’m truly not trying to impress anyone. Photos capturing beautiful moments and positive updates? Are just me trying to be grateful for the bits of happiness and tranquility that punctuate the chaos of life with two small children. My Pintrest boards? Wishful thinking. And any bit of cohesive writing is pieced together in stolen moments between snacktime and diaper changes.
So let’s give everyone the benefit of the doubt. Let’s celebrate the beautiful pictures and let our friends enjoy their moments of beauty and success. Let’s assume that they aren’t always as put together as they are in their profile pictures and be glad they’re not sharing photos of themselves sleep deprived with a giant chin zit (which they cleverly hide behind a coffee cup). But let’s also make them feel comfortable to keep it real. After all, if social media is going to be how we keep in touch in these digital days, let’s make it count.