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THE UPS AND DOWNS OF USING SOCIAL MEDIA FOR PERSONAL USE AND AS A BUSINESS TOOL

As I mentioned in my previous post, I’m part of a Facebook group for stay-at-home-moms. The group is called “Moms Supporting Moms”. The key word here is SUPPORT. I don’t have a lot of mom friends to turn to, and personally, I think that if I were to make new real-life mom friends, all they’d want to talk about is babies’ poop. I literally couldn’t care less how my baby poops as long as he poops, and I’m not here to talk about his personal business either, not online and not in person either.

‘Moms supporting Moms is a group where fellow moms can ask any questions they have about their kids. Any judgement, bullying, and negativity is strictly prohibited, which is why I joined the group initially as soon as I found it. I got some very helpful responses through the group that helped tremendously move past any dilemmas or conflicts that had to do with my son. I also gave advice if I felt I felt I could be of use or say anything helpful. Most of the time, everything went smoothly and there was no drama. It almost felt weird. The main reason why I refuse to use social media for any personal use is because I’m not here for drama. I’m way too busy for it. So it was really refreshing to know there was a group that was completely drama-free.

The ‘Moms Supporting Moms’ Facebook group was like a breath fresh air. That was the case at least until very recently. A few days ago, a mom posted a rant because she needed to vent out her frustrations about not being a mom to four young children, and one of them was disabled. One specific thing that frustrated ME in her post was that she wrote that she couldn’t work BECAUSE her son was disabled. I really felt the need to say something because in my own experience, and in my own childhood, things were much different.

In my own childhood experience, my mom was always working. My parents had no choice but to have two streams of income. First of all, life was, and still is, very expensive, and having a disabled child was even more expensive. There was a period of a few years my mom didn’t work for various reasons which I won’t get into, but what I will say about those years is that those were tough times for my parents financially. But despite this, my parents gave me everything when they practically had nothing. I really don’t see a child having a disability as a reason not to work. On the contrary, I see it as a reason TO work to make sure a disabled child is well taken care of and is given all the care, medical or otherwise that he or she needs.

Most, if not all, of the comments in the post were ‘Praying for you’, ‘You got this mamma’, ‘So sorry you’re having such a difficult time’, and more and more fake sh*t of that sort. I was astounded by all the fakeness surrounding the post. I’m not one to ever go with the crowd and be fake as everyone else. I’m not afraid of conflict, and I’m certainly not afraid to be hated. That’s why I felt the need to step in and give a piece of my mind. I wrote whatever was on my mind based on my own experience, as well the experiences I witnessed through my former friends who are also disabled like me. I had a friend from camp who had two older brothers and her mom worked as a school principle. I just wrote it how I saw it – that someone saying they’re not able to work just seems like an excuse.

Because I didn’t go with the crowd and didn’t provide any encouraging words for the mom who had four children and one was disabled, I got a ton of hate. I wasn’t surprised by it at all. On the contrary, I was proud of it. I was proud that I had enough courage to intake so much hate and not care for it at all. I didn’t let the hate get to me. I wasn’t the one taking things personally; others did. Fellow moms wrote to me such things as that I didn’t know was even talking about, the I was a bully and spoiled brat, that my mom didn’t teach me empathy, and much more.

This whole almost laughable ordeal made me think a lot about how we, as a society use social media. I use it as a business tool to promote myself. Since my brand is my face, all I do all day is come up with content that will best represent me as a person. Therefore, my face is always there for you to see when you see something from me. I try to make my content as personable as possible. Hence you might think it’s a personal account solely for friends and family, but it’s not. For all I care anyone can see my content – all 8 billion people in the world – as long as my son, or any other children I may have in the future, is not a part of that brand. As someone who uses social media to promote their business, I attempt to not get involved in any drama or fighting. I personally don’t have time for that because I’d rather use that time to spend time with my son, and it’s also just bad for the business. Starting and/or continuing any drama would make me look like a complete fool.

Using social media for personal use is a WHOLE other story. When you use social media solely for fun, you don’t understand the ins and outs of social media. You don’t understand that everything you ever post any post you engage with will stay on the internet forever. Anyone could see it even if your profile is private. I learned it the hard way following my car accident. I had a case following the car accident for me to get lump sum for the damages that the accident caused me. I won’t say the amount I received, but I’ll say that it was enough for me to purchase a condo and a car, but still not nearly as much as the pain and suffering I endured, and still endure to this day, following the accident . While going through the whole process, I couldn’t use social media at any capacity because whatever I’d put there would be used against me. In hindsight, I think this is the reason why I have such a love-hate relationship with social media in the first place. But now that enough time has passed, I know my limitations and boundaries when it comes to what I share with the world.

Social media used to be a tool to connect with our family and friends. More than a decade later, it’s something completely different. It’s now a place to promote our businesses, to be judged and judge others. It’s a place to bully and be bullied and for never-ending drama to be created out of nothing, which then creates a decline in mental health. It certainly created a decline in my mental health, and I’m not embarrassed to say it or to admit it. I always used social media as a business tool rather than personal, and just when I’d get ahead and show a glimpse of success, I’d give it all up. I had celebrities such as Kathy Hilton and Adrienne Bailon take notice of me, and even that wasn’t enough. I allowed my brain take over and care too much about all the judgements and bullying I received from others – both on social media and from people I used to call close friends of mine.

I can’t change the past and undo what I did. All I can do is focus on what I’m doing now and what I’ll be doing in the future. I know what I want to achieve with my platform, and that’ll be my sole intent. Nothing more and nothing less. I want to be a good person. I want to be a professional. I want to promote myself, my brand, and my business. I want to raise awareness. I want to be an advocate. I want to advocate for myself, for my son, and for others like me.

One thought on “THE UPS AND DOWNS OF USING SOCIAL MEDIA FOR PERSONAL USE AND AS A BUSINESS TOOL

  1. Hi there, I was interested in your reading your article. I wasn’t too sure what to say b/c it was different from what I thought I was getting into. I’m not one of that nature. I felt I could understand your side as well as the other person’s.
    At the end of the day, none of us know what we deal with on a individual level. Personally I believe it’s b/c we experience things differently. We also experience having the same situations with different scenarios. Before having my own personal problems all while homeschooling my children, challenges from different angles, etc. I would have a hard time understanding why so many people do some of the things they do. But the value from my journey is, I’ve learned how to just simply respect other peoples lifestyles, opinions, and differences regardless of how I see it.
    Some people are raised aggressively due to their life and their nature, while some are raised tenderheartedly, soft, and subtle. We come from different walks of life, different backgrounds. No one is perfect, no one is right. Many times when I was having my thoughts of despair, I didn’t care one bit of what I was doing or facing. Sometimes I’d wish someone would have been there to support. If we could just really and truly learn to love one another, except each other, give our sincere regards, and helpful suggestions, then will our world be perfect.
    Love,
    -Just Kadia

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