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Social media envy

3
Suzanne
What is social media envy? I've heard people talking about it but I'm not sure I understand it. They say it's when people see other people doing all these amazing things on Facebook or Twitter and their lives seem boring in comparison, has anybody else experienced this because I think I can relate to that! Also, apparently there is envy of how many 'friends' or 'followers' other people have. what are your thoughts/experiences about this? What can we do about it?
1
SuperDad
My children are envious of other people with all these so called 'friends'. I think the whole race to make 'friends' on Facebook is dangerous anyway! Giving complete strangers a title which subliminally encourages trust has obvious dangers. As for people being jealous of other people's social lives.....we all seem to do that one - it has nothing to do with age!
2
dorotheabluemer
I've not heard of that before.
But I know the phenomenon. It's exactly the same as in real life. My daughter and I talked about it recently. It's common for teenagers to envy those children in their classes, who are taken notice of a lot. They realise, that attracting others not necessarily means to have really many close friends. But although they see, that sometimes those with many 'followers' are lonely children, they envy them nevertheless. I think it's the feeling, that people taken notice of a lot are easier in a position to get their opinion heard.
We talked about the point, that quiet simply those who expose themselves most are of higher interest for followers than those, who are careful about that. That's exactly the same on social media. That counts for private life topics as well as for professional life topics.
1
Frank
I don't know about social media envy but I'm sure a lot of kids envy other kids that appear to be more popular/sociable than themselves. What makes this different is the fact that in an effort to compete with numbers of "followers" or "likes" is a risk as kids may connect with people they don't know, just to compete.
1
heidilynnrussell
Hi Suzanne,

I think it's what you describe. I don't think I'm allowed to post an outside link here, but if you Google "Facebook, depression, and Forbes Magazine," you'll find an article about a study on this. It reflects that the more time you spend on the site, if you are comparing your life to that of others, you can become depressed.

It all pretty much goes to attitude and monitoring your own feelings. I confess that I can fall prey to these feelings if I hit Facebook on a day when I am "down." For example, I decided this summer to postpone a vacation so that I could take my kid on something "grander" in a few months. Around the time I made the decision, I pulled up Facebook and found a lot of people posting vacation pics in places like Hawaii. I actually didn't pull the site up for about four days, because I recognized that I was feeling jealous instead of happy for them. I don't like it when I realize these things about myself, so to get around that negative mindset, I stay off the site until I feel "better."

The same thing happened this past month ... I have been sick with pneumonia for the past 4 weeks. I stayed off Facebook when I was having terrible days in bed, because I felt discouraged every time I pulled it up and saw photos of moms out with their kids doing "fun stuff." The guilt that I was in bed sick (even though it wasn't my fault, I still felt guilty) was too depressing.

So I think it just requires careful self-monitoring to avoid these kinds of situations. Not easy. :-/