Lately, I think I’ve been going through a midlife crisis. What Mama Love? You? Midlife crisis?! C’mon girl, get a grip. Yea, that’s what I’ve been trying to tell myself for a while. Get over it. Dont be so silly. You’re imagining it. But the more I’m online, the more I feel like I’m being swamped from all sides with no sight of a straw to grasp.
What brought this on? You may well ask. Social media. More’s to the point, the people who use social media. It seems that there are people who feel an obsessive need to control the actions of others from their keyboard. We’ve all heard of internet bullying, but usually, we associate this behaviour with adolescents and pre-pubescents. When you find grown adults practising the same thing, it does make you wonder.
It doesn’t matter which social network you’re on, these people can be found all over, without prejudice. There’s always someone or group of people trying to impose their will on others in a controlling manner. Why do they feel the compulsion to make misery for others online, for all the world to see..? Most people want their online persona to reflect well on themselves, so, for me, it’s kinda surpising and a little shocking, that so many people seem to be choosing the “bully” route as a means to outdo their peers.
I’m a member of a popular 3d chat site, and since I first joined it eight years ago, I’ve always found it amazing how people can get caught up in the eye candy of the avatars. Even recently, I felt the need to re-pulse (their version of “share”, “re-tweet” etc.) an article about this very subject. More and more people seem to be losing the plot. It’s like everyone has forgotten, that – in most cases – there is an actual human being controlling what is put forth onto the screen. And that that human has feelings, thoughts, opinions and all the other paraphanalia that goes along with being human, just like they do.
Saw this on another pulse, and had to repost. Some of us get it twisted, others comprehend… Which are you?
I find it time to Pulse this once More
Sometimes i think we all forget this once in awhile..lets try not to
1. An avatar on here has no heart to beat with… your heart in Real Life beats for the avatar.
2. An avatar has no brain to think with… your brain in RL thinks for your avatar
3. An avatar has no feelings… the person that controls the avatar behind the computer screen feels it all – and do Know that We (I) do feel it all
4. An avatar can’t talk for it self… you talk for the avatar
5. An avatar can’t do things… you have to make your avatar move spot to spot to do things
6. An avatar can’t feel love… the person that controls the avatar feels the love in Real Life.. ( Some of US do fall in Real Love)
7. An avatar doesn’t feel any care for anyone on here… only you that controls the avatar behind the computer screen feels Care and Love for each person on IMVU
8. An avatar can’t see… you see for the avatar where it is going
9. An avatar can’t hear… you hear for the avatar
10. An avatar doesn’t Cry Real Tears… it’s you it is (ME) that cries The Real Life Tears..
11: Yes behind this Screen even those of US that have Feeling and Fall In Love at times even they / we Shed Tears. Remember that.
The fact that someone actually felt they needed to put this into words is very telling of the modern online psyche. It infers that more people than we think are suffering from or with this dilemma. I was very shocked the first time I realised that I was experiencing internet bullying as the perpetrator was an actual offline friend who is senior in age to me, so therefore – in my mind – should’ve known better. I pointed out their actions to them, and they soon stopped after realising the error of their ways. Why do total strangers, on the other hand, think they can command you to do as they say or intimidate you so much into wanting to commit suicide/homocide? Really..?! That’s the level of “power-trip” the modern ego is on..? As a self-acknowledged bossy-boots myself, even I find the online practice distasteful. Trying to get my son to restore his room to human level instead of caveman level with threats of “time-outs”, “a month worth of punishments” and a can of good old fashioned “whoop ass” is one thing… Trying to manipulate a full-grown adult to spend their whole waking hours glued to their screen and keyboard for your entertainment is taking it too far. Especially when there are rules and conditions as to how you allow them to stay in your company, as I found in my latest endeavours online.
Most social network sites have clauses concerning online bullying in their ToA. Many users of these sites even self-govern their groups and forums with “Monitors”. On the whole, this is good a practice. It was one of the reasons I switched from Yahoo to Paltalk years before Yahoo shutdown their chat service in the west. Even back in the day, chatroom bullies were a problem. And, like I said earlier, they were primarily immature children who’d got hold of their parent’s computers and were flexing their online muscle. Nowadays, it’s all age groups, creeds, cultures, ethnicities, religions and sexual practice who partake in the behaviour. What I found the most shocking, is the fact that their targets are not your “typical” “run-of-the-mill” victim anymore. It seems that breaking the spirit of normally strong people is the latest “thing”.
Well, for me, I’m not saying I’m particularly strong or weak for that matter, but after finding myself being a target for such mindsets I had to look at myself a little differently. I mean, “why me?” afterall was the main thing that kept coming to mind. I’m now at the point of “who cares why me? whatcha gonna do about it?”… So, I’ve started to take steps against internet bullying for myself.
My answer..? Don’t get involved with it. Simple. The less I interact with these sites, the better for me. I have more time to do the things I’m supposed to do and less time worrying about how many “views”, “likes”, “comments” etc my page has received today. These people can’t physically harm me. And even if they could, they’d have to be pretty desperate and twisted to even try, and who needs people like that in their lives? Just don’t bother with it. Of course, there are exceptions to every rule. When I come across an exception, I adjust accordingly by limiting my time and activities on that site. It’s upset a few people, but it’s not about them. It’s about keeping myself intact mentally and emotionally. Like a wise woman told me recently (thanks May) – if it doesn’t enrich you, delete it. The minute you see the signs – leave. It’s not that hard.
In conclusion, the internet should be a fun environment for all to partake in and with. If you’re finding yourself miserable and low when using it, stop. Take a stock of what you’re doing and who you’re doing it with. Maybe it’s time to make that change in you and find something better that lifts you and nourishes you. Remove the negativity. It’s your life. Only you can be the boss of you. No one else.
Be happy while you’re living, for you’re a long time dead… Anon