Mom, You Just Don’t Get It by Ali Skylar

The other day my 21 year old son Chaz called after watching a documentary called The Social Dilemma. According to the filmmakers, this documentary is “a powerful exploration of the disproportionate impact that a relatively small number of engineers in Silicon Valley have over the way we think, act, and live our lives.”

The film explores how social media is “a system that connects us that also invisibly controls us. The collective lack of understanding about how these platforms actually operate has led to hidden and often harmful consequences to society—consequences that are becoming more and more evident over time, and consequences that, the subjects in The Social Dilemma suggest, are an existential threat to humanity.”

Chaz was really disturbed by what he learned, but also felt empowered discovering how the tech industry negatively and subliminally manipulates young people’s minds and behaviors in all areas of their life – especially when it comes to dating. There’s such an unhealthy pressure to fit into a standard of beauty and success that drives the nervous system into overdrive and the real authentic self into hiding.

Chaz had an “aha!” moment, as he explained to me how it all makes so much sense now why it’s doubly hard for his generation to feel good about themselves when it comes to dating. And why young people are so uncomfortable about who they are with the opposite sex.

As we talked, Chaz shared that young women of his generation won’t give out their cell number in order to connect in a real conversation to check out whether or not a guy is a possible date. Rather, they need “check a guy out on social media”  to determine whether or not he’s possible “in person” material.

And yet, we all know that so many times via social media, “What you see is NOT what you get.”

“Mom, you just don’t get how much the tech manipulation has created such insecurity in my generation. It’s crazy.  You can’t really understand the effect this has on a person because you didn’t grow up with this shit.”

Thank God I didn’t grow up with this shit.

I feel really blessed that when I was younger, dating was about a vibe you got from someone IN PERSON to figure out if you even wanted to pursue a date.

Look, this isn’t to say that people don’t find each other “online.”  Look at all the dating apps and websites that hook people up who fall in love and make a life together. However, as a mom, it’s so disheartening to see how social media has taken a toll on young people’s self-esteem and confidence.

Young adults who grew up posting their life (or self-created life) online, now have their love life exposed for everyone to see as Facebook, Instagram and Twitter posts. How can anyone create a real relationship, an intimate connection with another being, when it’s being splashed out on the internet for the whole world to see? Can they really be themselves and find “true love?”

Hubby and I watched the documentary and even before watching it were very aware of the concerns expressed.  We were expecting to see “gloom and doom” when it came to the negative effects of social media on our children’s mental health.

However, we were surprisingly inspired to see the generation that created much of this technology is now dedicated to exposing the powers that be that have corrupted a system that initially had some good intentions to make the world a more connected and positive web of sharing and caring..

Hopefully, more young people will watch this documentary and decide to take back their personal power by reframing their relationship with social media. Maybe they’ll even get up the courage to call someone on the phone and ask them for a date before checking out their profiles…:)

Excitedly, the trailer on YouTube has almost 6.5 million views so far. You can find The Social Dilemma Documentary on Netflix.

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  1. One Response to “Mom, You Just Don’t Get It by Ali Skylar”

  2. This is so true!! Great points!! As a millennial I wish we never had social media, it makes us miss out on the present!!

    By Lexi Lyrc on Nov 5, 2020