At the end of 2018, a new show was released. I usually have no interest in the latest entertainment trend but my roommate's reaction from across the room sparked my interest. Also, two of the main characters are from some of our favorite shows: "Gossip Girl" and "Pretty Little Liars." The show "You" is about a young man, Joe, accidentally meeting a young girl, Beck, and quickly becoming obsessed. He stalks her every move through social media and begins to follow her around the city. By the end of the first episode, he had already initiated a relationship with her without her knowledge of his meddling in her life to do so.
Now, I've only really watched the first episode but it really got me thinking about how truly scary stalking can be.
1. It is WAY too easy for someone to get into your living space.
Through one phone call and simple small talk, the main character was easily able to get into a girl's apartment to snoop around. This was just very scary to realize especially since I can see how easy it might be for someone to do the same to me. Way too real.
2.Your social media accounts shouldn't give away every detail of your life.
As many times as my parents have told me to be careful about social media, I have never thought too long and hard about it. However, watching someone else so intently watch someone through their social media certainly woke me up about it. If someone putting minimal effort in on google can put together your daily schedule then you've put way too much information out there.
3. Situations are easily manipulated.
It only takes a few white lies and crafty wording to steer situations in a direction of your choosing. We usually steer situations by controlling our reaction and carefully choosing our words, however, this thing we do almost absentmindedly can also be used for malicious purposes. It's a little freaky to think that someone else might be in control of a situation that you thought was completely random and/or normal.
4. First impressions only go so far.
As we all have been told, first impressions are everything. So, the real question is whether or not a first impression can actually reveal what you need to know about a person. In my opinion, a first impression is hardly ever enough to judge the intent or character of a person. If Joe Goldberg has taught me anything so far, it's that judging a book by its cover or a person by their first impression is never an effective way to gauge whether they need to be in your life or not. To the unsuspecting public, Joe is a perfectly respectable and nice guy, but underneath that facade, there is an unnerving and obsessive stalker.
5. No matter how safe you may think it is, never walk around cities alone at night.
This is something every girl has had drilled into her head since she began going out with friends or became independent. However, I know sometimes we think there may not be much to be scared of. Think about this though, Joe saved Beck's life when she fell on the subway tracks. If he hadn't been following her she probably would have died. That does not excuse his stalking though, by any means. Not only is being only dumb because of creepy perverts who might try and use that to their advantage, but it is also unsafe if anything were to happen to you and no one was there to help you out.
All of this to say that everyone, not just girls, needs to be aware of the people and environment around them. Be aware of the information you put out for the world to see. Be aware of who and what you let into your lives. Don't let the world scare you into isolation but don't let the people in it conquer you without permission.