Social Media and the Village

computer-kid-400We’ve all heard about the village. It takes a village to raise a baby, we as women need to find our village, or group, or mom friends. How do we obtain a village in our current society? If you have friends, neighbors and family close by to help you, you are in the lucky minority of parents with a good social support system.

The role of social media has been a big one when it comes to new mothers. Or really to any mother. There is so much information and potential for support there. Unfortunately, there’s also potential for a lot of angst. I often see online groups for moms that have morphed into a mess of arguments, disagreements, and all out wars about which is the “right” way to raise a child. In truth, we all do it a little bit (or a LOT) differently and that is normal and good. Because there is no one way.

Is this type of interaction typical for a group of women having a discussion? Well, yes and no. Plenty of individuals tend to become defensive, argumentative with one another in groups. It may be true that we say things on social media that we would never say in person. But weren’t we thinking it? I think it is possible that the new wave of interaction on social media is a good thing. It is a way for us to reach out, connect with one another, ask questions, vent, and generally break up the monotony of the day with a very young child.
We are in a pendulum swing. Human beings used to spend more time around others, less time in their homes and were more likely to run over to a neighbor’s house if they needed something. The last several decades we have become more insular as a society in general. BUT, with the availability of social media, even when we are in our homes we have the ability to communicate with others, to feel less alone and to find people who may have some answers, or even feel the same way that we do!

So, while there can be negativity on social media and the internet in general, we still have hope that it remains a benefit, not a detriment.

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