Take away the inner thrill one gets from establishing ones own personal Facebook page …….the agonised pondering over the cover photo and all the rest…the endless hours of filling in the likes and dislikes and the inviting of friends…take this away for a moment and one is left with?…..? Take away the endless ‘status’ quotations and the posters that connect one to a Higher Source in an open and public way as never quite before….what is one left with?….?

I have spent the last four months reading documents and case histories of people, positive and negative, of the result this type of social media participation can cause.  I kept thinking upon reading about crashed relationships between husbands and wives, parents and their children, the obsession with having the android phone always at hand to view the latest ahievement of another…friend or foe…to be able to comment  upon a latest update….I kept thinking….this is totally out of control.  How can this happen? How can Facebook postings be of such significance that it actually affects ones personal life? Yeah! right!! as my young students would say.  BUT I have in this last week experienced the real power behind Facebook and like many issues in life it can seen for the good (seldom) and the negative(almost always). 

If one scrolls through all the endless happy family photos and the achievements and the awards and the commemorations of people who passed on, of the budding romances and the scholastic achievements,and happy holidays and…and … a clear pattern emerges.  Facebook is  for many a platform for camouflaged realities and damage control in lives clearly going awry or desperate to succeed.  This statement may seem unfair to the extreme. It isnt when you know the truth of the Facebook page holders life And I do know the Truth for I have in most cases been involved for a short or longer time in their weekly routine. 

In the beginning I never could understand this desperate need to expose ones personal life..ones likes and dislikes…ones anger and ones peace….ones religious beliefs and ones hopes and dreams….I never could understand and I suppose if the truth be told I never will.  I suppose using Facebook is the same as using this WordPress site to express my own view point.  Are we so desperate to share our lives with others?

An Afrikaans Poem

Mama ek so is jammer vir alles
vir die wat ek nie kan doen
dat ek nie bo 80% vir my vakke kry nie
en dat ek nooiet in die top tien is nie
Jammer dat ek te stadig in vinnige
netbal reageer en dat ek nie krulhare het nie
soos Margeuax, die dogtor van jou vriendin
wie se ‘profile’ op Facebook lees…
blink  kind van ons liefde en ‘n geskenk van bo
slim in alles…presteerder…(vir haar is daar net
lof en roem en balkies)..‘n dierbare kind.
….mense sal alles glo!
Ek is net jou dogtor al kry jy soms skaam
vir my sommer-so-miskien bruin hare
en my eenvoudige doopnaam
ek kan nie so mooi dans nie
en sing is ‘n ander leeftyd se droom
maar ek sien al jou begeerte en hartseer
want al my ‘kannies’ laat jou nie toe om
ons lewens op Facebook te bekroon.

Jy is my Mama
en ek is lief vir jou
want jy het my hier gebring in die donkerste nag uur
van ‘n koue winters nag
maar Mama…kyk hoe lyk ons nou?

I am numbed and it is true to say   flabbergasted by  the ‘marketing’  of peoples lives.  How unbelievably fortunate they are that their readers let the fantasy that is theirs go.