Many of my friends don’t “do Facebook” or god forbid…Twitter. So how do they stay connected? Do they pop out for a quick coffee or grab lunch with a pal? Pick up the phone to check in? Send a quick email? If they do these things on a consistent basis, they’re doing a lot to nurture important relationships.
If they’re NOT doing things things on the regular, then…(quick, somebody pass me a soapbox) they risk missing out. Some may argue social media is a “time sucker.” Sure, it can be. Updating photos to my Facebook page takes a few minutes, responding to emails takes a few more and tweeting, well that can take a few minutes to a few hours. Is digital networking addictive? Yup. It takes time and it’s addictive? But, is it worth it? Absolutely.
Facebook – I have family and friends who live FAR away. Having the chance to look at their photos and share my own, keeps us connected. Do I update my status every minute to share every detail of my life in real-time? Hells no. If I have something important to share. I share. If not, I read what OTHER people have to share.
Twitter – I agree, the concept sounds silly. Like Facebook, I don’t tweet every thought in my head. Ok, sometimes. But mostly Twitter is a conversation. It’s also an interactive support system. And frankly, one of the best places for a good ol’ belly laugh. I’ve made connections via Twitter I never would have otherwise. Ahem… yummymummyclub. And friendships. REAL ones. I met my friend Sarah on an online message board and we really connected on Twitter. We met in real life a few months ago over lunch at Craft Bar in NYC. I couldn’t believe I was finally sitting face to face with her. I kind of wanted to reach out a poke her to make sure she was real. Sarah understands what life is like with a unique child. She’s offered so much support and guidance and unconditional kindness. For example, I put my hat in the ring on Twitter to win a Kobo Reader (to pass the time at appointments with Avery) and Sarah won it. Instead of keeping it for herself, she quietly arranged to have it sent to me instead. Who DOES that? The amazing people I’ve befriended on Twitter, that’s who.
I’m not saying social media should replace real-life interaction. Twitter has nothing on a long walk with a friend or a night out with the girls. Communicating online forms a bridge between the url and irl. Oh, that’s good. Feel free to tweet that out. LOL!
But I digress, as a stay-at-home parent, these outlets have enabled me to socialize with old friends and also make new ones – which is fantastic since it’s not like I’m going to run into anyone interesting while doing my dishes or meet up with a gal pal in my closet while I’m putting away socks.
I challenge you (Yes, I’m looking at you Twitter naysayers) to try it for a month and see if you don’t change your mind. Engage, mingle a little and you’ll love it…or your money back. What? Fine. It’s free. You can’t go wrong at that price. 🙂