I tweet a lot.
One of my resolutions for this year was to spend less time live-tweeting my thoughts, but that hasn’t really come to fruition. Last week, I had a notification telling me my Twitter account was six years old (my blog account, anyway, my McFly/Katy Perry fan account has been lying unused for a fair bit longer) and that inspired me to whip out my calculator and see just how much I actually tweet. The results? I tweet an average of 28 times a day. TWENTY EIGHT. Which, considering I try to sleep for at least eight hours a day, would suggest I tweet roughly twice an hour, minimum. Oops.
I’m happy to share a lot of my life online and after nearly eight years of running this blog, and god knows how many years spent on Tumblr and Piczo before that, it’s become second nature. I think I’m known as a relatively open and honest blogger, which probably stems from my willingness to share when things are a little bit shitty, alongside when life is going well.
And whilst I am very open about the vast majority of my life, I still don’t share everything. God only knows what my Twitter feed would look like if I did! I still value my privacy, the privacy of the people around me, and I’m also painfully aware of how annoying I must be to follow on Twitter already.
Over the past few months, I’ve noticed a lot of people I meet “in real life” seem to think that they know everything about my life, because they’ve seen my tweets or my Instagram stories or read a blog post. I’ve bumped into school friends who’ve commented on the fact that they don’t need to ask how I am because they saw such and such a post, or I’ve had other friends and acquaintances assume they know my stance on things based on the mindless drivel I tend to tweet.
The thing is, I save a lot of chat for offline questions. I don’t talk much about my political leanings, or my relationship with food (despite regularly discussing the food I do eat), and I rarely share my hopes for the future. It took me a while to work up to sharing things like my ambitions and my relationship with exercise this year, and my decision to discuss my endometriosis diagnosis was years in the making.
Despite feeling comfortable enough to share a lot of my experiences, particularly with mental and physical health, my insecurities and my wins – there are still some things I’m not quite comfortable putting out into the world. Some are small, some are big, but either way, they’re staying offline for now. That’s not to say they’ll never come online, because we all know I love a rambling blog post about whatever thought has popped into my head that week, but more that I’m just not ready to share quite yet.
Although a lot of the things I do share online are instant, in the moment remarks, there are many tweets and posts and captions that sit in my drafts for months, whilst I try and build up the courage to share them with the world. Meanwhile, I’ll happily discuss them offline, because it feels more personal. Dealing with the end of a friendship is a topic I’ve discussed with my close friends on numerous occasions for years now, but it wasn’t until this year that I felt comfortable enough to hit the publish button.
I guess the point I’m trying to make here is that you never really know what’s actually going on in someone’s life, no matter how open they may appear to be on social media. I think this is one of the real downsides to social media, in that people make less of an effort to connect with people and discuss what’s going on or how they’re feeling. I’m guilty of it myself, but it’s something I’m trying to work on.
Honestly? I think it’s kind of rude to assume that you know everything about someone based on their Twitter feed. Social media isn’t everything, even to someone as obsessed with those apps as me. It takes seconds to send someone a text or a private message to check in behind the scenes, and I think it’s something we should all be doing more.
I save all of my good gossip for cake dates, anyway, so you’ll need to bribe me with food if you want the really juicy details.