Why can’t we ALL just get along?!?

9 Jun

A little while back I took The Mom Pledge, feel free to read about what it means to me here. As someone who has had experience with bullies at school, work, on message boards and finally on this very blog, I take The Pledge very seriously and it is very important to me. Just because we are all hiding behind computer screens and smart phones doesn’t give us the right to berate each other online. So I reaffirm my commitment to The Mom Pledge and I will continue to proudly wear the badge here on my blog.

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I belong to an amazing group of bloggers called the Philly Social Media Moms (PSMM). I’ve been a part of the group for a while now, but I spend most of my time as a wallflower not really participating too much, in fact I’ve only met a few of the other members in real life. On more than one occasion I’ve referred to these women as Rock Stars, and they really are.  From the stay at home mom who blogs for her therapy (like me) to the super successful social media tycoon making a living from her writing, PSMM has it all. One of the things I find amazing about this group of women is how supportive everyone is of each other. I have never seen or heard a nasty word spoken among members and I’ve found that to be so reassuring. It’s comforting to know that a little blogger like me isn’t going to be eaten alive by women who are far more savvy than I.

I’ve been blogging for a couple years now, but it’s just recently that I’ve started getting involved with the blogging world outside of this tiny blog. I enjoy the (internet) friendships that I’ve made with other mothers. I enjoy the conversations I have via twitter. I enjoy the sense of community I feel with other mothers throughout the country. With all that being said, something happened last night that has left me in total disbelief.

Two women, both members of PSMM and both women I respect and value (despite never actually meeting them in person) go into it last night on Twitter. As I lay in bed reading the nasty things they said to each other I was first embarrassed for them. I mean come on, they were throwing insults back and forth on Twitter for THOUSANDS of their followers to see. I wanted to jump in and scream, “STOP IT YOU GUYS! Please take it someplace private if you’re going to act that way.” But being the chicken I am, I didn’t say a word. Truth be told I was also afraid that the venom in their words would be aimed at me. At some point I realized I wasn’t embarrassed for them anymore, it was something else. I felt like a small child who is being forced to watch her parents fight. I had no idea how the fight started, or why and I was watching two people whom I have a great deal of respect for verbally duke it out. It mad me sad, and I just wanted it to stop. I remember the same feeling of helplessness when my parents (who have been happily married for well over 40 years) would fight.

I know the exchange between these women wasn’t my business at all, but they kind of made it my business when they did it in public. I really wish they both could have used the block option that Twitter makes available to us. I hope that the other people who saw what went down last night see it as an example of what not to do. The “event” illustrates just how quickly things can get out of hand while using social media. Would things have gotten as heated if they were standing face to face or even on the phone? Somehow I doubt it.

Those time tested words of our mothers, “If you don’t have anything nice to say then don’t say anything at all” are words we should all live by.

Go forth into the world and commit a random act of kindness.

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