So I sit here with so much to say and not enough time in the world to voice it all. Thatcher is FINALLY in bed after a horrible, exhausting day and I’m spent, mentally and physically. Thinking about going upstairs to bed physically hurts. It was the kind of day where Thatcher literally WOULD NOT nap, and screamed for half an hour when I tried to get him to sleep. Pulled my hair. Screamed at me when he was hungry. People think my kid is a perfect angel, but I assure you, he is not. He will tell you when he’s not happy, and today that was all freakin’ day.
I can’t blame him. I’ve been pretty miserable to be around lately, too. I am just frustrated with humanity, basically. Allow me to explain; for the last few weeks I’ve really felt harassed on Facebook. I generally speak my mind, and social media is no exception. But ever since the car seat incidents, I really feel targeted. Sure, things I say aren’t always flowery and happy. If something isn’t nice but I’ve been thinking it a lot lately, it gets a mention. Is that appropriate for Facebook? Probably not. But since my attempt to stay off my phone, I’ve quit Twitter, where I would normally vent my frustrations. On Twitter, people appreciate your honesty. You don’t tweet to interact with people you know IRL, you tweet to make your little internet family that you have a lot of things in common with.
I keep forgetting that Facebook is different. Facebook is a group of people you know IRL, but you only like 60% of them. You add them or they add you for the simple fact that you know each other. That’s it. Some are friends, some are coworkers, some are family. Some, you might have even met at the bar when you were 21 or on a vacation for spring break. But all of them know you on some level.
The problem with Facebook is that you can never delete people. Delete your family members? Get the evil eye and get talked about at family functions. Delete coworkers? Everybody talks about you in the break room. You can’t even delete a friend of a friend of a friend because it will get back to them. So what are you supposed to do, then?
I guess you could avoid all posts that people might find offensive. So, what could those be? Firstly, people hated my chalk board pregnancy photos. So I guess none of those. Then I hear people complain about baby pics. So no posting Thatcher pictures, then. Not to mention that everyone tells me I shouldn’t compare Thatch to other kids, especially typical kids. So I guess posting updates on what he’s doing developmentally is out. Oh, and how about posting an OPINION on something?! How would that go over? HA!
So the other day, I posted a pure opinion on Facebook. For no reason other than the fact that something was bothering me. Like any normal human being, I have likes and dislikes (go figure!). I decided to state my immense dislike for a certain name. And I stated it in a Facebook status. Someone asked me why I hated that name and anyone who names their child this, and I stated that it’s because I see it as a stripper name. It’s got a trashy ring to it, one of those names people think are cute and princessy but in reality they belong in Hustler magazine, like Destiny, or Charity, or Harmony. So I post about how much I hate this name, and I get all kinds of nasty comments. Comments about how I need to be nicer, or more positive, or that I’m “stirring the pot”… even that I need a hobby. I need a hobby?! I haven’t been out of my house for more than half an hour in a week, and when I do go out I’m carting around 20lb of baby, 10lb of diaper bag, 10lb of carseat… I’m sure I have time and energy for a hobby!
So the gist of what people were saying is… don’t voice my opinions. Apparently everyone who commented on my status is allowed to have an opinion, but I’m not. Yep. That seems totally fair. Now to be honest, yes, I do stir the pot every so often. 99% of the time, I don’t even realize I’m doing it. And so I get why people don’t like me. But to gang up on me on my own Facebook status and tell me what a horrible person I am?
It really took me back to high school. I got bullied in high school, taunted and tormented, called names… I got singled out of my group and hated. I actually had to file a police report because a bunch of girls told me that I should kill myself because the world would be a better place without me; one of the girls told the principal what happened and he called police; she later denied it and said that I snitched. When I tried to switch schools, the public school wouldn’t take me. They said they didn’t want my problems. So I was stuck. I was insanely depressed and at times I contemplated suicide. It was a horrible time in my life, and I think people who tell you high school was the best time of their life are crazy. Honestly, nothing good happened to me in high school, and I regularly speak to approximately one person that I went to school with. In high school, was there a reason people didn’t like me? Probably. My likes, dislikes, and values probably didn’t align with them. And yes, I probably ran my mouth a little bit too much. Did I deserve to be alienated, made fun of, and made to feel like a pile of trash? Probably not.
I feel like society is so unaccepting of differing opinions. And yes, I’m guilty too. I’ve said things that were offensive because they didn’t align with my thoughts and ideas. And I know it was wrong. And it’s something I’m working on. It’s part of my whole positivity/ignoring the negative thing. There are people on Facebook that I don’t like, but I can’t delete because then it will become a whole load of drama that I’m not interested in. So I unfollow them, and their posts never show up on my feed. But what am I supposed to do when those people still get my posts, and they start commenting on them and picking them apart? Refuse to defend myself, lest I be labelled a pot-stirrer?! Delete them and have them talk behind my back about how I backed down and didn’t defend my point? There is no way of winning.
So here’s what I propose: We all need to take a step back and realize everyone is different. Everyone has different likes and dislikes, different hobbies, religions, etc. And we accept that. I might hate that you named your kid Destiny. But I’m not going to say it to your face. And I’m not going to say it behind your back. I might tell my husband I hate it, and that’s as far as it goes (husbands don’t count as talking behind your back because they are like a phantom limb or something). I’m allowed to dislike things you say, and you’re allowed to dislike things I say, and it only makes us bad people when we argue about it or talk behind each other’s backs. I am a good person. I’m a nurse, I care about my patients. I buy lunch for homeless people sometimes. I tip 20% most of the time. I hold the door open, not just for the elderly, but for everyone. And I love my family, my friends, and my little bird fiercely. I am not a bad person. Until you tempt me. Until you comment on something and you push my buttons. Then, I’m a bitch. But let me tell you something, button pusher. That makes you a bitch too. So if I post something that you dislike, be it an opinion, a thought, an action, and you don’t like it, scroll on by. Or better yet, go to my page and hit “delete” or “unfollow.” Whatever you need to do. I know I have a lot of unpopular opinions, and I’m not well-liked. Life isn’t a popularity contest. At least I’m not sweet and nice to peoples’ faces and rude behind their back just so everyone will like me. If I like you, you know. If I don’t, you know. And if you don’t like me, I’d rather you just leave me alone. Is it really too much to ask? I want my son to be raised to know that he is allowed to have opinions. He is allowed to have likes and dislikes. Sure, he should voice them in an appropriate manner, but he is an individual with individual thoughts, and he can let them be known. I don’t want to raise a marshmallow. I want to raise an individual. And I’m sure, if you have kids, you do too. So why can’t we let each other be individuals with individual thoughts, and lead by example?
Days like these, when my son has cried probably 2-3 hours of the day, ripped out my hair, vomited on me multiple times, and woken up whilst I was blogging because he was having night terrors, I have a lot on my plate. I am having a hard enough time being a mama. I have enough to deal with without being antagonized. I’m allowed to be grouchy; we all are. Give me my moment to be a grouch; to not be happy 24/7. I’m a human, just like you. You ignore me, I’ll ignore you, and we will all be better people. Even on minimal sleep.