How the internet made me into something I’m not and How I got out of it.
This is a weird topic to talk about, isn’t it? Since here I am, on the internet, talking about the internet being toxic. The internet has everything from funny cat videos, to cool stuff, all the way to being able to make new friends. But where do things start heading south?
I started using the internet on regular basis at a young age. I was around middle school age and social media and the internet where still somewhat new to everyone. Online I learned a lot, but with all the freedom I had, and no supervision, I made a lot of mistakes.
Now you must be asking: How can you really make that much mistakes on the internet?
It all started with “Cat-fishing”, Cat-fishing is when you go onto a social media account and pretend to be someone you aren’t by using fake names, pictures and information.
I was young, and my best friend told me to just make a Facebook/Myspace account with a fake name and photos because we where too young to have our own information on our accounts. Looking back on this, I wondered why I even made an account at all. At the end of the day, I was too young and this was an awful idea.
With the fake name and the pictures of a pretty girl on my profile, my friends list started growing rapidly. This made me feel wanted and all the extra attention made me happy at the time. Writing about this honestly makes feel so embarrassed cause I wonder why I did any of this.
Talking to these people online started to create problems. People thought I was older, and lived a completely different life than I actually did.
People would want to meet up, or video chat and for some reason they would get so angry if I said no. Some people were honestly a bit insane and over the top. Someone even called the police on me! But being around 11-12 and a total immature, naive catfish, I had no idea how to handle these situations.
This would continue to get worse as I began to dislike myself even more. Everyone only like the fake me, fake pictures and fake life, but no one cared for the real me. I started to feel awful about myself and every time I looked in the mirror, I hoped I would see someone different than me.
Every morning I’d hope to open my eyes to some great life that was just anything but what I was actually living. I wanted to be perfect.
The internet gave me this ability to become someone I’m not. There was so many influences across the web that told it was okay to continue what I was doing.
So whats the lesson in all this?
I learned how easy the internet makes it to play a role, and a lot of people do it. Not everyone uses fake pictures and catfish accounts either. Some celebrities edit their photos and make it out to seem like their life is picture perfect. We all want to show the world how interesting and amazing our life is, so we try our hardest. It’s bout amazing and terrifying to see how far we have come with both technology and the internet.
Now that I am much older,
I know how to use the internet in a more positive manner such as my blog and trying to spread positivity with writing. Through my blog I want to continue spreading this positivity. Teaching others how to use the internet as more of a happy place for them has made me happy.
I finally deleted my catfish accounts around age of 13-14,when I started high school and started making real friends. I also realized if anyone actually found these catfish accounts it wouldn’t make me look that good. Doing this made me feel better over time, because I started to feel more like myself and work more on myself.
I realized how something as little has photo shopping your photos can change how you look at yourself. And that Pretending to be someone else can begin to turn you into someone else.
The most important thing to take from this is that not everything online is as perfect as it seems. All the celebrities you know are human just like you and me and their lives are not perfect. Don’t use the internet for attention either, you might just end up even more lonely than you where to begin with.
Be yourself and love yourself. Do things for you not for others. Use the Internet to look for positive role models and happiness.
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