My So-Called Perfect Life

For the most part, I find Twitter to be a good representation of life. There are good times, and there are tough times. Facebook, on the other hand, seems to be full of happy perfect lives. Children are always well-behaved and gifted. Friends have either lost all their baby weight three weeks after giving birth, or else they are on holiday every month. Husbands are always buying their wives designer handbags and cars with giant bows on them. I mean, where do you even find a giant bow that doesn’t look too small on an SUV? Is there a specialist website? Do car dealers keep them in the back room to help close the deal with these generous husbands?

But I digress. Life is not all caviar and champagne. Not even if you can afford caviar and champagne every day. Life is tough enough without having to compete and live up to a life that no one is actually living. Some of the statuses reek of sadness and insecurity. I use Facebook to communicate with my friends and family who are all over the world. I love looking at their photos and seeing what is happening in their lives. 

But come on Facebook friends, let’s take a break from these exaggerated status updates. Tell your so-called friends what life is really like. What’s really on your mind? ‘My husband leaves his dirty pants on the floor’, ‘my child is three years old and still wears nappies’, ‘I am three stone overweight’, ‘I haven’t showered in three days’ – these are just some of the status updates we might see. Not from me obviously, my life really IS perfect.


And then the fun began...

Social Media, aka Not So Lonely

I have really gotten into Twitter in the past year. I enjoy tweeting and reading tweets. And about six months ago, I really got into blogs. A few years ago, many parenting blogs were just mums gushing about how wonderful their babies were and the joy of motherhood. I get it, but who wants to read that day after day? I mostly read family-orientated blogs, but from moms and dads. Sure you get the joys of parenthood, but also the tribulations. There are the struggles of working, full-time or part-time, as well as staying at home and losing one’s career. I feel so connected to these people, though I have only been following their lives for a short time. 

I have also gotten into expat blogs. They didn’t have such things when I first moved here. What help that would have been. Sometimes it’s so lonely when you’re a foreigner and are thinking and acting differently to the others around you. Though the USA and the UK have less differences than most other countries, it still feels like a million miles away from what you know.

I remember feeling so isolated at my first job in the UK. It was a small office and everyone was British. People were nice and courteous. And we would sometimes pop to the local pub for a drink at lunchtime on a Friday. But there was a lack of warmth and silliness that was lacking. I missed my American colleagues. It took me about a year before I actually made a friend, and it got easier after that. But that first year was pretty lonely.

If you are an expat, how do you deal with living in another country? Do you use social media to keep in touch with family and friends back ‘home’? Or do you use it to make new friends in your adopted homeland?