We’ve heard it all before, social media is a fabricated waste of time. Some of us agree, yet no matter our views, we almost all still seem to have it. In fact, social media has become so unavoidable it’s harming like a plague, and the most prominent of the abusers?—Instagram.
Yeah, yeah, yeah. We know, Instagram highlights beautiful skinny women from all over the world that seem to live the perfect lives. Whether it’s on you explore page or your feed, there’s a good chance that if you don’t devote hours of your days working out or taking pictures of yourself/having pictures taken, you’ll see an image of someone that looks exactly like everything you aren’t.
You click on the perfect blonde’s profile and begin to wander. Immediately you can’t help but notice that her eyes are icy and enticing, where yours are dark and dependent. Her smile is bright like the life she seems to live and the souls she claims to love, and you can’t help but notice you don’t notice a flaw.
The strongest of us are unmoved by such a seeming amount of perfection, but for the majority of us, like myself, after so long we can’t help but compare our lives to the scripted glimpses we see into others.’
Now, don’t get me wrong, Instagram certainly has its pros — my favorite being the social networking aspect. I have been blessed with a few strong friends and countless acquaintances that I have met through Instragram; the app also allows me to keep up on their life through posts and stories.
But, I can personally say from my own experience of gaining some degree of Instagram “fame” that the app certainly has so many more negatives than positives, and some days I find myself missing the world before Instagram, the time I like to call “the calm before the storm.”
To say fame has been reached from a couple thousand Instagram followers gained over five years sounds absolutely ridiculous. Yet, here I am, in that exact situation finding myself to be idolized by people I have never even met. In the last year of my life, I went from being another face in a crowd, to instead being stared at or glared at by a few in that same crowd of strangers.
Of course, this occurrence of being recognized is rare and is really only common at parties or events with teenagers my age. But the point is, I only have 5k followers and I am being treated as if I’m superior among locals. Or the exact opposite, I’m treated as if I’m stuck-up.
Either way, it’s ridiculous, and yet another downfall of the extremely misleading world of Instagram.
But, if I have yet to turn you against the beloved app, let me divulge a few more disasters I’ve encountered:
I’ve been DM’ed by SO many types of weirdos. Trust me when I say nothing really surprises me anymore when it comes to the male species. I will leave it at that.
Speaking of DMs, want to see all the unwanted d*ck pics I have in mine?? Cringeworthy.
My name is now almost always associated with the word Instagram. Seriously, I can’t even tell you how many times I’ve gotten “wait, you’re the girl from Instagram, right?” ...which is not exactly how I’ve ever wanted to be referred to as.
The scariest part of all of these? I have a super small fraction of followers compared to many other users…I can only imagine how much more of a nightmare their experiences must be, and how much worse mine will become. It’s enough of a scare to make me question if having any type of social media is worth it anymore.
So, if you are still wasting energy stressing over what filter to use or taking time out of your day to make the taunting decision of choosing what picture will land you the most likes, STOP.
If there is anything I learned from gaining attention from Instagram, is that there are so many other and better ways to utilize your time. In fact, having loads of likes compared to other local users is one of the stupidest accomplishments you can earn.
Yet, in today’s society, most teenagers would rather strive to be like the Instagram stars with the pretty white teeth than the people actually making a difference in the world.
So please, spend your youth, the precious, dwindling years left, and do something good for the world. Something that’s going to make you look back on and smile when you’re old, something that is going to make you feel as if you lived a fulfilled life. Something that is going to touch the lives of others, and I can assure you that landing thousands of likes on your latest Instagram picture will never provide such justice.