We have all seen the 'Facebook breakdown'. It’s distressing to watch anyone unraveling, but when it happens online, it can be a totally new level of 'uncomfortable'.
It happens on Facebook, BBM and Twitter. The first few posts move between melancholic and passive-aggressive, with lots of dots to express things left unsaid...
The day generally ends with more questionable grammar but for now, the humble exclamation mark must accept the abuse.
An online breakdown might start with an update like: The sun is up and shining. But not for me...
The next update might be: You think you can just walk away? You think I will just take it? Well, you think wrong...
Then, later on: I am a strong person. My TRUE friends know that. You know who you are. And who you aren't...
Then something random like: Left my cellphone at work :(
And then, once the wine has kicked in, it’s something like: My SISTAS! Don't let ANYONE get you down!! EVER!!! You are AWESOME!!! and deserve BETTER!!!!
Funny in a TV show. Less funny coming from a friend/ acquaintance/ some random person we happen to follow.
So what is our role? Do we, the audience/ community/ readers, ever say "stop"? And if so, who exactly are we saying it for?
For the writer, who is so incredibly exposed and vulnerable?
For us, who like to be in far shallower waters of pain and suffering; the raw, mud-soaked stuff of a true emotional crisis being too much to bear?
I am not sure what our role is. I’ve seen a few TRUE!!! online breakdowns in my years as a social media spectator and there is only one thing I know for sure: we expose far more of ourselves than we mean to anyway. When we are no longer able to navigate the path between personal and private it can be very scary for everyone.
I guess this blog is me purging more kak about how much to share, how much to keep and what my responsibility is to my readers and your responsibility to me.
Lets hope that none of us ever have to figure it out for real.