Monday, 22 January 2018

Our Curated Lives

I've been thinking about social media for the past day or so. About the carefully curated persona we present to the world through Facebook or Instagram. I mean "curated" like I curate my closet, in the sense that the images and details are "chosen, organized and presented" very deliberately, to achieve a certain end. Some social media users get slammed for over-curating their content, for presenting only those pictures which depict their lives as perfect when, of course, they aren't perfect at all. On the other hand social media users are often criticised for not being selective enough, for posting overly personal moments, and events, that should be kept private. Think of all the future fifty year-olds who are going to regret those high school party shots shared on Facebook. 

So where should we draw the line, do you think, on what we share and what we keep private? To answer my own question, I guess our own need for privacy and our own level of comfort in talking about ourselves will dictate where we draw that line. As well as our sense of good taste, and maybe even our knowledge that whatever we say on-line is very difficult to take back or erase. We are the curators of our own public image. Whether that image is shared with a few friends and family, or made public on the world wide web.

And I've been thinking that despite the fact that social media is relatively new, the idea of choosing what we share with the world is not. Haven't we always chosen what we share of ourselves and our lives with others? Haven't our lives always been "curated?" Whether it's the photos we have in our wedding album, the details on our work resumé, or the difference between what we tell our co-workers about our vacation versus what we tell our best friend. 


woman and man with their arms about each other, smiling.
My cousin Mark and me after my brother Terry's funeral in September. 

For example, this photo of my cousin Mark and me was taken after my brother Terry's funeral in September. I love this picture. We were so happy to see each other; it had been years and years. This shot, plus one of my sisters and me together for the first time in ages, and one of my niece Carly looking sweet in her dress and high heels, these are the shots I've kept of that day. They make me smile. Doesn't mean it wasn't a sad and upsetting day. It was. But I'm choosing the moments I want to remember visually. Curating, in a way. 

Similarly, Hubby and I took some wonderful pictures of our South America trip. Some we deleted. The best ones I shared on Instagram and Facebook, or in my blog posts. I do not, however, have any photos to share of our panic when we were trapped in the hotel courtyard in Salta. Nor of the meltdown I had in the shower one night in Peru. And I have neither a written nor a pictorial record of the weirdly huge insect bites that appeared on my leg and elsewhere, and which necessitated a trip to the hospital emergency ward in El Calafate, Argentina for diagnosis and treatment. So, you could say I'm carefully curating our trip by choosing what to take photos of, which photos to share, what events to share in words, and what to shut up about. Ha. Until now.

man and woman posing in front of snow covered mountains
Hiking in Patagonia. Somewhere on this day long hike I was bitten and did not react well. Not at all. Ouch. 
I've been thinking about all this for the past few days, ever since someone commented to me that my Facebook page was "business as usual" when I came home from England, when clearly life was not business as usual for me. I thought that was interesting. No, life was not business as usual for me then. It was a bit difficult, actually. And I chose not to show visual reflections of that difficulty on either FB or IG. If you look at my social media accounts, you'll see happy travel pics, old family photos, pictures of the ski trail or sunset walks, and lots and lots of outfits. Obviously these shots are chosen, curated if you will, to reveal as much as I want to reveal and no more. 

I do, however, write in more detail about events in my life on this blog. I write about myself, and also for myself. So in May, amidst the posts on hair troubles and books, I talked of my brother's ongoing illness. And in September I wrote about his death. And I mused about the nature of family in a post a week or so after his funeral, while I was planning and packing for England. And that was enough, I thought. Doesn't mean I wasn't still struggling, or that I wasn't thinking of him, and of my family. Just that I was done talking about it publicly. Well, except for the angel reference in my Christmas tree post. 

Let's pause for a minute, here, to talk a bit about that Christmas post. Mum and I laughing about the last scene of  It's a Wonderful Life, where Clarence gets his wings. It was fond laughter born of a shared knowledge of that old movie. Triggered by the ringing of Mum's doorbell and there being no one there, by Mum's comment that it was "probably Terry getting his wings," and, of course, by our shared knowledge of my brother. Because if you read between the lines of my post when he died, you'll know that in his youth he was no angel. Bit of a hellion, actually. 

And just because my mum and I laughed that day doesn't mean we weren't missing him. That's how most people roll, I think. We're all showing only a part of ourselves on the outside. You have to look carefully and closely, and listen attentively, to understand what lies beneath. And I don't think that's much different than it ever was. Our outer lives have always been carefully curated to show only part of our inner one. The advent of social media simply means the possibility of many more people seeing that part which you choose to share with the world.

So on my Facebook page and on my Instagram account, and even to a lesser extent on this blog, it was business as usual. Carefully curated business as usual. Christmas trees, shopping stories, books. But if you read carefully, sometimes between the lines, sometimes only in the hashtags, you can see what's going on underneath.

woman and small boy clutching a teddy bear, taken in the 1940's


You know, I'm pretty comfortable talking about myself publicly. Comes from all those years of standing in front of a class. I used to tell my students stories of growing up on the farm in New Brunswick, of Hubby's and my fishing adventures, about my grandmother, or my cat... whatever was relevant to the lesson and sometimes what was not relevant at all. But just as my stories were about me, they were not all of me. There was always a barrier, a line that I would not cross. Despite being very comfortable with the kids, I was always aware of the need for a certain amount of distance between student and teacher. 

And it's the same with social media. There is a line over which I do not venture. I choose to share only what I feel comfortable sharing.

Sometimes I think that social media gets a bad rap. Oh sure, sometimes it drives me up the wall... cat and dog videos, pithy aphorisms, you know. But if we use it judiciously, and learn how to use it wisely... that's why we teach kids about media in school, after all. If we recognize that others are curating their public persona as well. Then, it becomes just a way to connect with a larger world, and even to build community, like through this blog. And it can be fun, and... it's certainly a great way to get outfit ideas. 

But as usual, I'm just thinking out loud here ... or in print. 

And sharing it with you guys... and the world. Ha. 







P.S. I'm pretty sure I'm not saying anything new or earth shattering in this post. Just in case you read this and thought, "Well, d'uh." It's just what's been on my mind lately. 

So if you have anything on your mind, friends... well, it's your turn.






Linking up with Thursday Favourites at Katherine's Corner  and Saturday Share at Not Dressed as Lamb

43 comments:

  1. Hi Susan
    I agree that of course there's an element of curating our social media. Actually I'm pretty careful with it: for me Facebook is totally private and only for family and a few friends, I love Instagram to look at but don't post a lot myself, partly because I'm hopeless at selfies! But I embrace a facility or platform, that allows me to communicate and write about myself, and more difficult issues as I have two blogs; one that is ostensibly about fashion, but is also, underneath it all, an examination of and a reflection on my ageing, and how society deals with ageing, the second is for difficult, challenging and more political issues. In both, I do not mind talking and writing about myself, hey it's what writers do! And I don't go with the view that social media is all bad, or worse, as I do know people who see Facebook as the work of the devil and to be avoided at all costs just because..... No, it's a reflection of society and yourself. So each individual should make that social media place a good place. And like you I love the community I've built, and continue to build, around my blogs. But yes, I do curate, because when I was in France people didn't get a pic of my mosquito bitten legs which on one day when I counted them amounted to 32 huge bites! And just lately I've had a really awful cold (not flu) which has hung around - I recycled old pics for a couple of weeks. No one has seen pics of how I really felt!!!! So was that business as usual? Well, probably like you, I see blogging as proper journalism with deadlines, so I do feel obliged to write if not every week, it has to be regularly, and I did give hints that I wasn't 100%. But writing is something I can't not do. So to sum up, yes, I keep some stuff private, but communicating and ruminating and reflecting on issues and, OK, frocks, with a community of women is such a privilege - I love it!

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    1. I've been a bit dismayed with Facebook. I started a page for the blog, and instead of just "liking" and thus following that page, people I don't know send me friend requests. I've never posted very personal stuff on FB mostly travel pics etc. and notifications of blog posts. Now I only "follow" family and close friends. And even then if someone posts multiple times a day, I mute them or unfollow them.

      I rarely "interact" on social media in the way that all the articles say bloggers should do. I only scroll through Twitter, Pinterest, and don't have any social media except IG on my phone. Even doing that it takes up to much time in my day and I'm going to have to rethink the whole thing... I think:)

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    2. P.S. I'm off to check out your blog.

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  2. I’m sure your teaching has had an effect . It’s rather like being on stage everyday , revealing so much of yourself . Many of our good stand up comics here started out as teachers .Perhaps I am too much of an introvert to make a good teacher , or blogger . I’m a bit of a Greta Garbo at times .
    I can understand why Facebook & Instagram is so popular & most of the time it is harmless & useful . Groups of family & friends sharing news & pics but there seems to be another side to it where people live a sort of fantasy life for their followers . A young friend’s mother in law posts regularly about her wonderful marriage & great life , whereas I know the truth is very different & it saddens me . I wonder how many people are feeling discontented & envying the lives of others for no good reason . I know we’ve always had celebs pretending they have perfect lives but now it is regular folk perpetuating myths . It happens on some blogs too , not the ones I favour , not the honest ones & there are quite a few of you out there ( including Penny above ) .
    I use very little of the social media ...read sometimes but don’t often post . I like to think I am an open person but very much limit what I reveal to the wide world . There are only two photos of me out there & one of them is with you - my Facebook picture is of my dogs . Perhaps I’m revealing too much now & you realize how grumpy I can be :)
    Wendy in York

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    1. I think that there's a bit of the youngest child thing going with me as well. You know... look at me, look at me. I was very shy in public as a kid and teenager, and saved my performing for home. When I shared that with a class one day, a boy said..."Well, what happened to you?" Ha. Not sure when the shyness went away.
      I've gone off thinking of Facebook as useful, except that I do follow my favourite radio news programs on our CBC because they send links to their show, with a written article and a link to listen to the entire episode if I want. I love that.
      P.S. You are NOT grumpy!

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  3. It is good froom time to time to discuss "nothing new or earth shattering",no?
    We curate our real life and history,even among friends and family,because there are private things and there are situation when we don't want to disturb our dearest. I'm very sorry for your huge insects bites and trip to the hospital and all the distress -I'm sure that in the similar situation I would not tell even my mother about it while I'm far away-why to scare her?
    I don't think that it is necessary to tell or to show everything,there has to be some own's (secret)garden to tend,to paraphrase Candide (and one of my favourite quotes)
    The part of life,thoughts or emotion you want to share is yours to choose,curate and share,"business as usual"-like or not
    But,obviously it is important to teach children that instagram truth may or may not be the truth,but it is never "the whole truth" and "nothing but the truth" truth. That their life,emotions and preferences could change but the photos and content of the moment or phase in life, will stay forever on media. That they need to enjoy the moment and share (or not) it later
    That they have the right not to be photographed and posted,if they don't want it
    Dottoressa

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    1. You've hit the nail on the head, there, Dottoressa. I wrote the post about Patagonia while we were still travelling and did not dare write about the hospital visit. No one knew until I could get home and call Mum and tell her myself.
      Teaching kids to deconstruct media, and read the symbols and bias can be so much fun. One kid said one day that we were ruining television for him because he couldn't watch without analyzing anymore. Yep. That was the point!
      I agree about parents posting shots of children if the kids don't want their photo shared. I read an article last year written by a mom who asks her kids if she can post. I think that's important.

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  4. I do think the level of "curation" is excessive. Certainly not here but for many other influencers. This is a bit of comedy that has some truth to it as to what extent people will strive for followers...

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C-1uCgkyw8c

    Suzanne

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    1. Oh yes... many bloggers and IG users can really edit too much. I like a bit of reality. I'm always afraid that someone will meet me and say...wow...you look way better in your photos.

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  5. I abandoned Facebook two years ago and have never looked back. I'm not on Instagram or Twitter. Or anything (except LinkedIn, barely). This is an entirely conscious choice and not due to a lack of knowledge about the world of social media - quite the opposite, in fact. And this January 1st I said goodbye to all but two blogs - this one, and one other - and unsubscribed from all retail sites, again, a very conscious choice on my part. I'll turn 60 at the end of 2018 and I'm tracking toward that milestone with a greater sense of how and where I want to spend my time, money, and mental and physical energy. Two years ago I completed a second Master's degree and went on from that to become certified as a Life Coach. My practice is flourishing and I'm flourishing as I invest myself in this new career. It energizes me, while time spent trawling through status updates and blogger prattle (not on this blog, obviously - Sue never prattles!) dragged me down. I've come to realize I'm not wired for the overstimulated world of social media, and I've chosen to celebrate this realization by carefully curating my exposure and investment. Devoting half an hour each week to High Heels in the Wilderness is definitely a worthy investment.

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    1. Gosh, Lia. I am really flattered (and happy) that I made the cut. Thanks.

      Prattling is different, I think, from thinking out loud in print. It seems to me that many people should take the time to revise their posts, and take out the details that don't move the piece forward. That's the line I always used to use with my students. Detail, is good, even extensive detail, if it's necessary.

      I had this post all written, I thought, a day before I published. But I wasn't happy with where it was going, and it was too long. Took me almost the entire second day to revise and edit. I removed whole paragraphs, and cut out almost 500 words. And it's tighter and says what I want. It was worth the time I invested to rewrite. Because I want readers to feel that reading my blog is worth THEIR time:)

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  6. You are so correct re: curation of social media and many online venues. I have really tried to dial back my reading and it makes a big difference in mental health. As you mention, there are those who feel compelled to share every iota of their lives, and over time, I find it uninteresting. Your posts are always interesting, and I enjoy your blog.

    As for myself, I really limit what I post online. I now full well there are those who can find just about anything I put out there, and I don't really trust privacy settings to save me from the truly curious...not that my life is that interesting really. I am on social media platforms to see family, friends, and keep up with my kids. And to read the news, but less lately. Too crazy making.

    --Laurel

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    1. Thanks Laurel. I'm quite stingy with the time I will devote to reading other blogs. I know that's supposed to be the way to gain readers...to read and comment on other blogs. But I still read only the ones I'd read even if I wasn't a blogger myself.

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  7. I enjoy your blog. I retired from teaching 6th graders this past year. I can identify with the comments that you make about your experience with teaching. I keep reading your blog whereas I have given up on others. I particularly like your book reviews. Your writing style is entertaining as well as thought provoking. Well done! (How was that for a cliche teacher phrase! Ha)

    --Annette

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    1. Ha. That's a great teacher phrase. Well done, right back at you!
      And thanks for reading, Anette.

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  8. Hi Sue
    My best self is represented on social media. So yes, I'm very curated...just like my closest.
    A blogger I follow requested friendship on FB. Usually I'm very careful who I allow in my circle. But I was thinking that I don't post anything that would hurt myself or others. She is a trial run...but thinking about it now that may change!?!
    I love hearing your tender moments with your Mom and stories on Terry. Especially when Terry got his wings. Missing a love one is ongoing. We learn to live with the loss in our own way.
    Take care and hopefully this rain doesn't melt away the snow on your happy trails!!
    Robin




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    1. Thanks so much for your comment, Robin. Sometimes I think that readers must roll their eyes when I talk about such things and say, "Oh, here we go again."

      Re: the FB thing. I receive lots of friend requests from other bloggers, and for a while I mostly accepted them because they were also friends with a few bloggers who I "know." I follow several bloggers on FB and often read their posts that way. I thought these friend requests were to gain easy access to my blog links. But then my daily feed became clogged with posts advertising their blog, or their Etsy store etc. If you have a "business" page you can pay to have your site promoted on FB. So it occurred to me that they weren't actually interested in reading my stuff, just in promoting their own. So I "unfollowed" many of them. That "unfollow" button is very handy:)

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  9. It's a fine balance, isn't it, and an ongoing effort to maintain. Much of what I did when teaching literature -- and I'm guessing the same was true for you -- was to help students see how to read texts with an awareness of what I might call the politics of representation. Long before social media existed, we had rhetoricians exhorting crowds and then centuries of books, then film, television, etc. . . All tendentious in some way, impossible to represent everything neutrally or objectively, so it behooves the viewer to be alert and aware. Now, of course, it's all ramped up and there are more and more sources offering "texts" or narratives for us to read (or see or hear or whatever). I'm going on too long, I know, but I'm surprised and maybe a bit alarmed at how naïve so many still seem willing to be about the processes of selection that go into ANY representation, for all sorts of reasons. I'd like to assume that readers know that the Me they see on my blog is only a persona -- she's not my whole self. Of course I'm going to keep back some of my life, sometimes deliberately, sometimes just because there's not time for everything, sometimes because some details are trivial and would bore readers silly. All of which is just preamble to say that I think you strike the right note in your blog, a good balance between maintaining your privacy (and your family's) and offering an honest sketch of your life. Happy skiing!

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    1. I didn't teach that to the level you did, obviously. But wow, that textual analysis thing, no matter what the text is, is so much fun to do and to teach.
      Re: blog "curating.". I love that in my blog I can present a part of me that people who see me every day don't always see. My mum says she's learned so much about me and my opinions from reading my blog. All of the bits are true, just that there are bits missing. Like being in the classroom. And speaking of which, I watch my language on the blog just like I did at school. Which is hard sometimes for this Maritimer:)

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    2. Isn't it funny? I love my four-letter words IRL, but like you, I use them only very rarely (twice, three times in ten years? Maybe?) and although I had more freedom than you in the classroom (given that I was teaching university students rather than high school) for "linguistic colour," I was pretty careful about using it there as well.

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    3. I think you both strike a good balance on your blogs. They seem authentic but not so personal that readers (at least readers like me) feel uncomfortable. I'm still teaching (last semester I think), and it scares me what some of my students will post. In at least one case I know of, the student lost a job because of ill conceived Facebook posts about his drinking. I'm still too shy for a blog or even frequent comments, which probably stems from a mother who told me frequently not to do anything I did not want to see on the front page of a newspaper!

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  10. I love the comment above - I’m not wired for the over stimulated world of social media - that’s me in a nutshell. It took years before I would leave a comment on a blog. The blogs that I read are written by real women, with real lives. Many young people will live to regret just how much they have shared on FB when they are older and wiser.
    Ali

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    1. Frances really know her stuff about literature, and blogging. I find that I can grow weary, as well, of the hyper active tone on social media, and in some blogs.

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  11. I have periodic tidy-ups of my FB page, getting rid of ads and posts that I find very irritating. Pretty much anything that is a platitude or which says: type Amen if you like this gets the heave-ho. And I don't post that much really. I have learned to rein in my knee-jerk response to idiots and pick my responses very carefully if I feel it is warranted. With my blog I am - as we all are, in reality - directional in what I choose to write about. After all, if someone asks how you are, you don't just tell them everything. Otherwise you find people edging away...I also quite purposefully avoid posting images of myself. Suppose that is my privacy setting.

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    1. Oh, yes. Those "share if you agree," "type Amen" posts are really annoying. I really enjoy your blog. Keep on being "directional"... you won't find me "edging away.: :)

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  12. Like you, I've always been in front of people, one way or another, and I'm comfortable. Telling our stories is how we get to know one another. Every popular blogger shares part of themselves with their readers. It's how they get to know us and decide whether they want to read our blogs each week. In turn, we get to know them through the comments they leave. It's how we form digital relationships with people. The same holds true for social media. You make such an important point, Sue, about how we ALL curate our lives whether it's with family and friends or through our online connections. Just like our friends and family, we know who the critics on social media are. The other day I posted a photo of a woman, wearing a raggedy faux fur. It was taken from behind, waist up. There weren't any clues about the city she was in, and you couldn't see her face. Eighty percent of my Instagram followers liked it as an example of style DO and DON'T. The other 20 percent said I "shouldn't shame women." I guess they didn't read Cosmopolitan magazine back in the day because Style DOs and DON'Ts were a regular, popular feature. Now we have a tendency to view everything through a political correctness lens... Grrrr... xoxox, Brenda

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    1. Thanks, Brenda. Telling stories is how we learn who we are, and who others are. It's a big part of my Irish heritage as well.
      P.S. I remember those style dos and don'ts in Cosmopolitan magazine back in the day.

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  13. I agree with you it was ever thus. People have always curated their lives to some extent and edited what and how they present themselves-some more than others. Social media has increased audience and access which is good and bad. Interesting insights into other lives but at time worrying to see what some people are prepared to share. It's a very phony world and that's where those of us who are digital immigrants have an advantage. I am amazed by the prevalence of curated pictures of cats, knitting and tea cups and the time spent creating them but each to his own. The appeal of your blog for me is that you write in an intelligent and entertaining way on subjects that I find interesting and your curated self appears authentic!! Iris

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    1. Thanks, Iris. I try to be honest in what I choose to include on the blog. And what I leave out as Frances says is just not interesting enough to write about ... or too personal to say publicly.

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  14. Sharing is caring, but if someone posts re a skin rash/infection, overtly political views or what they passed in the toilet... YEEEEESH !

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    1. Ewwwww. Now I have that picture in my head.

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  15. Hi Sue, thanks for another relevant and well written topic. As others have commented I see many pros and cons with social media. In the main how it enables us to keep in touch and makes friends with like minded people that we wouldn't otherwise have had contact with. Sharing life experiences, travel etc. I feel concerned, as others have mentioned about the personal pictures people share especially of their young children. I feel it's very important that children, teenagers and vulnerable adults are helped to understand that what they see and hear on social media is not necessarily "real life" ... enhanced photographs, staged rooms in homes etc.
    I don't have a Facebook account and don't feel that I'm missing out. I have considered it, mainly as a way of seeing photos posted by distant family members. I've recently started posting on Instagram, as a way of sharing my travel photos with people who's blogs I readon't. I so enjoy looking at their photos, that I felt I'd like to share mine. It's such a great way to travel vicariously! Also to see places we feel we may like to visit in the future, bring back memories of places we've been ... What to post in the ordinary days between travel has occupied my thoughts recently ... that's very much a "work in progress" ☺
    Rosie

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    1. I love your posts on IG, Rosie. Keep them coming.

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  16. We all curate and edit and shape and decorate and accessorize our personas -- online, IRL, in private journals, in selfies, professionally, even before those we love most, and definitely when we get dressed.

    I know about curating my persona. The last few years have been challenging because of my beloved's serious illness and, recently, his death. Although I'm an extrovert and a very public professional person, we chose not to display our struggles except to very close friends and family.

    So in reference to that someone who misinterpreted your blog posts after your brother died as “business as usual,” please know that your readers who have lost loved ones appreciate that we live amidst idiots capable of conjuring gross misjudgments about everything, including how we navigate our deep grief. Worse, the idiots do not shy from sharing their misinterpretations. No rejoinder seems sufficient or appropriate. So, again, we curate our response, because expressing ourselves clearly could turn felonious.

    Or if we have a blog we may choose to hang the idiot, gently, out to dry. And that’s curation done well.

    Ann in Missouri

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    1. I have a hard time sharing struggles as well, Ann. Not that I've had that many difficult things to deal with so far in my life. And certainly not what you've had on your plate. I find, interestingly that I can write about them much more easily than talking about them. And even then I want to make a joke, or minimize everything. But I think that people who know me should be able to see through this. Which, of course isn't always the case, sadly.

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  17. Your point about curating in real life is well taken. I tend to think of this as the public face, which most of us maintain to some degree.

    As for social media, I much preferred the freedom I had when I blogged anonymously. I didn’t have to worry about the fact that potential clients might be looking, not to mention a potential date. Even if I weren’t concerned about that, there is a fair amount that I would never show or speak about. I think we each decide where that line is drawn.

    As a writer, this is a challenge. And at times a dilemma. Specifics make writing richer, but those same specifics can be problematic when income and/or relationships are involved, ie potentially impacted by what you communicate and how. (I tend to speak/write of “sensitive subjects” or relationship issues when they are past, not current.)

    That said, I share little that is personal on FB, and am circumspect about personal details there and elsewhere. As a single woman, I’ve had enough odd encounters to keep me somewhat wary.

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    1. I'm very circumspect about some things and not at all about others. Partly for me, it's just that writing about my life is what interests me, my life and the lives of people I know. I think that makes me self-centered!

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  18. Hi Sue - I like your ruminations and this post. I don't know if you have read "Alone Together" by (I think) the brilliant Sherry Turkle, a professor of science/tech at MIT.

    I had the pleasure of hearing her speak at a conference - lots to think about. One of the things that stuck with me was her research that indicates kids would way rather text/Snapchat/post on social media than talk, and she wonders if all that creating/curating a public persona interferes with face-to-face human communication where so much remains unspoken and is communicated through gestures, facial expression and other non-verbal clues.

    Of course, we all have multiple selves - and are those selves less authentic when we only (mostly) respond to others in digital forums?

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    1. Thanks. I must look for that book. Navigating face-to-face communication is so important for all of us to learn, I think. I was heartened when back in the 90's we started teaching group dynamics in high school, actually teaching students how to have discussion, how to reach a consensus, how to work collaboratively as a group. Then this whole section of the curriculum was eliminated. Very short-sighted I believe. School should NOT be all about learning stuff... but more about how to navigate our world. But don't get me started on that!

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  19. I love Instagram because pictures tell the story. I've not been a huge fan of fb but my daughter & fiancé post a lot and encourage me to stay up to date on fb. I only have 30 fb friends and even then when I post something, I wonder if I'm sharing too much with too many people. I've battled anxiety for quite some time, and I have to admit, after going on anxiety meds last fall, I'm more relaxed and less anxious about social media like I used to be. Though with a blended family like ours, I was not pleased when my hubby friended his ex wife years ago. He did so because their daughter was moving away and she communicates more with her mom on social media, so he could follow along. Then I friended her and a couple other of their relatives. But over time I realized it wasn't working for me and caused too much anxiety seeing what his exwife was up to on a daily basis and comparing it to our life. I had to draw up some boundary lines and delete her and a couple others that I felt I really had no business following and it didn't add to my life in a positive way. Sorry for being so long winded! lol

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    1. I just saw your comment... after how many months? Sorry that I did not reply sooner. You were NOT being long-winded! That is what the comment section is for... conversation. Thanks for weighing in.

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