Why We Should Keep Telling Lies on Facebook

Every few months, some variation of a “Social media only shows the highlights of life, let’s get real” kind of article makes the rounds online. Without fail, my newsfeed then blows up with all these comments exclaiming how spot on these posts are, and that no one’s life is perfect. They say we should be more authentic and real on social media.

I completely disagree. Facebook is surface material. We should liken Facebook to a cocktail party/social gathering of some kind. You may have a few good friends there, several acquaintances, and many people you hardly know at all. What do you talk about with those you hardly know or rarely see? You talk about the highlights of your life. Sure, if something negative yet significant is happening, you might discuss that as well, but for the most part, you engage in small talk. You don’t go to a party and tell everyone how your son broke a lamp while you were trying to get dressed for the event, your sitter was running late, and you argued with your husband on the ride over. Instead, you smile, nod and enjoy the company of others. Then, you go home to your real, messy, beautiful life. The one where you put on sweats, eat microwave popcorn and binge watch Netflix while ignoring the mountain of dirty dishes in the sink.

If you expect Facebook to be raw and unfiltered you expect too much.

By now, most people should know those picture perfect photos are not too common, and that the person posting them likely has a pile of laundry to finish, work problems to take care of, arguing siblings to deal with and a plethora of other things to handle. I have never been under the impression that we need to put it all out there to make Facebook less intimidating or more realistic, just as I wouldn’t expect people at a cocktail party to be more transparent on account of others. Remember Eleanor Roosevelt’s wise words, “No one can make you feel inferior without your consent.”

So keep lying to me on Facebook!

Show me the fantastic meals, the exotic locations, the perfect kids…show me that so I can escape the legos all over the floor and the burned waffles for a moment. Let me know that you are okay, and that you have some great moments in life. Now and then, let’s get real with a vent about life or a photo of the laundry pile, but for the most part, show me those cute kids and pets of yours. You don’t even have to tell me it was one of 50 photos and the day ended with all of you in tears. I know that is bound to happen.facebook lies

Recently, I posted to Instagram an image of a craft my daughter and I made as gifts. I quickly shoved the mess to the side and snapped the photo. It isn’t because I’m necessarily embarrassed of the mess; simply put, that is not the point of the photo! The craft is the point. You don’t need to see my children’s artwork, the pile of mail or the random tools my husband left on the mantle (why, husband, WHY?). All you want to see is the craft, and that’s okay.

A quote by author Steve Furtick has become an internet sensation over the last several years. I have seen it posted hundreds of times across social media. It reads: “The reason we struggle with insecurity is because we compare our behind-the-scenes with everyone else’s highlight reel.”

I say, we ought to know by know that we only see {and show} our highlight reels in most aspects of life. And honestly, we should only want to see other people’s highlight reels. My closest friends, please tell me everything going on in your life, but let’s do that over drinks. Random girl I follow on Instagram, show me your cute kiddos at the school play, and tell your best friend about all the meltdowns which occurred on the way to, during and after said play. It’s not that I don’t care about you, but if everyone showed their “behind the scenes” as much as the internet claims to want them to, social media would be a very depressing place.

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Myndee is a 35ish year old New Orleans area native. She's an author, speaker and self-love advocate. As an introverted extrovert, Myndee loves being part of the generation where most of her friends live in her computer. She and her husband, Luis, live just outside the city with their three kids.

1 COMMENT

  1. I love this article!! Spot on! Haha. I love seeing all of the awesome stuff going on in everyone’s lives it keeps me motivated knowing there is good fun stuff in the future to look forward to. Even when my 11 month old cries all day long ?

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