I’ve been avoiding writing this post because it hits a little too close to home, but I think it’s important, and I hope that you will take the time to read it.
My friend Chelsea had a really cool opportunity. She was involved with an Influenster campaign with CoverGirl, and as one of the “tasks,” she tweeted a before and after photo using the CoverGirl mascara. CoverGirl asked to promote her tweet! (Isn’t that a blogger’s dream? I’m still a little envious.) I can only imaging how excited she must have felt, and how shocked she was when her notifications were flooded with negative comments, expletives, and just flat out mean tweets.
My heart really hurt for Chelsea. She has been one of my best friends since the end of freshman year in college. She has had my back through everything. If there is a major secret laying on my heart, I know that I can tell Chelsea, because she will guard it with her life. She has a heart for individuals with disabilities, specifically autism and hearing and vision impairments. She interned last summer teaching individuals with vision impairments how to use technology that would allow them to see. Her face was the first face that her clients saw after being unable to see for so long. And I bet they could care less about what her lashes looked like.
As someone who was cyberbullied in high school and college, my blood started to boil. I wanted to lash out at these people for being so mean to my friend. How dare them, right?! So I started of thinking of mean things that I could tweet back to them. But right before I hit send, I realized that when I lashed out at some random stranger for hurting my friend, I was stooping down to their level. And I’m better than that, and I know you’re better than that, too.
So here’s the moral of my story – Be nice. Don’t feel safe being mean because you’re sitting behind a keyboard. You never know someone’s story. Think before sending that nasty tweet or leaving that condescending blog comment.
And if you’re up for a challenge, I challenge you to join me in trying to make social media and the blogging community a more positive place! (This is why I started my #WCW series on my Facebook page!) Bloggers have more influence than they know… Why not use yours to be positive?
A big thank you to my friend Chelsea for allowing me to share her story! The last two photos in this post belong to her, please do not use without her permission.