From Our Readers
January 30, 2015 10:20 am

We now live in a world where anything you feel like sharing, you can. And if people want to comment on it, they probably will. People seem interested in the silliest things that you do—and that’s great! You’re watching your favorite TV series again? Well, your third cousin that you haven’t seen since you were three will comment on Facebook with a “cool lol” and you’ll feel like you’re connecting. You become really close with that cousin again, and that’s not a bad thing, right? Of course not.

The problem is, sharing (or over-sharing, by some people’s definition) leads to a whole new phenomenon: the sense of entitlement that people seem to have when it comes to telling you that what you’re doing isn’t their cup of tea.

Now, I know, you’re putting the info out there and you’re “inviting” people in to comment, but I don’t think that that should open you up to ridicule. There is a serious lack of social media etiquette going on, and in most cases, none of these super rude comments would ever be said face to face.

I’ll use myself as an example. I love the movie Titanic. I love it more than James Cameron. I’m sure even Jim would said to me, “Calm down Lyndsay, it’s not that great.” And because I love this movie, I watch it. A lot. If I happen to post on social media about it, I’m hit with a barrage of people making fun of me for watching it again, and how is that fair? It’s something that I enjoy, and I’m posting on my own Facebook account about it and sharing my enjoyment.

Here’s my proposal. This comes from my own experience of how I deal with things that I don’t like on social media, so you may want to grab a pen and a piece of paper. Follow these steps closely.

1. See post about something that you don’t like, or don’t care about.
2. Notice that the person posting about it seems to be excited, or that maybe it makes them happy.
3. Scroll away from it.

That’s it! That’s all you have to do! If you see a friend post about a new sushi restaurant that they’re excited about, but you don’t like sushi? Doesn’t matter. You don’t need to comment just to tell them that you don’t like sushi. It doesn’t affect them. Or you for that matter. Your life is completely unchanged if someone that you know is eating food that you don’t like. A friend of yours posts that they’re listening to the new T. Swift album and you don’t like her? Cool. They do, let them enjoy it. I actually know somebody who posted about listening to a new album recently, and somebody on his friends list went out of their way to find a negative review about the album, just to share it with him. How exactly does this serve you? How does that make you happy? If doing something like that brings you joy, then you need a serious life overhaul.

Listen, everyone is different. And that’s the coolest thing about this world: we’re all our own people, with our own ideals and beliefs and interests. It’s okay that you don’t like everything that your friends like; it’s normal. All I’m saying is, what happened to “if you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t say anything at all”? We were taught that early on, and children seem to have grasped that concept, but what happened as we grew up?

Negative thoughts aren’t healthy, and they actually keep you from being happy. Don’t let the negativity win, or allow your negative thoughts to change the way people see you. I guess what I’m hoping to achieve with this, is that maybe one person will read it, and the next time they come across something that they don’t like on somebody else’s feed, they’ll rethink their nasty comment, and scroll on. You’ll feel better about yourself, I promise.

Lyndsay Kay is a (soon to be) divorced hairdresser and cat mom from Ontario Canada, who enjoys horror movies, Harry Potter, reading, and is probably a bit too obsessed with all things Titanic. She’s a body positivity warrior, and a huge supporter of selfie culture as a form of self love. You can follow her on Instagram.

(Image via Dmitriy Turovskiy.)