I remember the first phone call I made about Facebook. Funny to say now, I actually picked up the phone and called my friend, didn’t text. We were discussing college life and I remarked about this new website called Facebook, only open to college students with a valid university email. It wasn’t yet available at her college, but she vowed to jump on board as soon as it was. Fast forward a number of years (you can do the math on how long ago I was in college), and EVERYONE has a profile on the social media platform. I’ll admit, when they opened it up to anyone, I was bit unsure. It felt like something that was sacred to my college years was now widely accessible. However, now it’s become a great way to stay connected with long distance family and friends, a way to share wonderful resources such as this blog, and to connect with local businesses/resources.
But first, Facebook
Yet, there are days when social media comes before personal connections. People live on it, reach for it to share woes and share successes. People are sharing with social media followers FIRST, before anyone else. I’ll admit, I am guilty of too much time on my phone, perusing Facebook and Instagram. I am trying to make a conscious effort to do less of that – no phones at the dinner table, really talking with my children and husband. I try not to share anything really personal on social media, good or bad. If I am having an exceptionally crappy week, you won’t hear about it on Facebook. If I make a positive life change, social media is the last place I update. We don’t need to put every thought we have and every move we make out into the universe. I’ll be honest, finding out about the death of a family member not once, but twice via Facebook prompted me to blog about it. That just took my frustration of excessive over sharing to another level. When did we stop thinking before we started typing? I get why some of my friends refuse to jump on the social media bandwagon. I’m not perfect, but I am doing my best to hold onto my personal connections.
Can we meet in person?
Thinking of how much has changed in just the last decade, what will our children’s generation look like with social media? I’m hoping if they see my husband and I maintaining phone calls, visits to family and friends, and less time on our iPhones, they will see the value in a traditional relationship without the internet. My husband called and visited when we dated; texting wasn’t really in use then. By the time my sons are trying to date, they’ll probably have virtual reality coffee shops for meet ups! I pray they pick up the phone and call me, visit friends, and properly ‘court’ a girl, showing chivalry as their father does every day.
Let’s share what’s necessary for connections, beneficial information and lighthearted conversations (#ItsJustaCup, people!). Let’s reach out to others personally, showing our kids the way we did it, old school style. If anything, telling my kids the day I learned about the internet will make for great dinner table conversation. Maybe they’ll even post about it.