Posted in Musings

The Selfish Ones

Before I even start I want to make clear that I’m not directing this to any one particular generation – it applies to all generations, actually. I’ve seen too many posts and articles lately that are attacking the Millennial gen for things that don’t mean squat. Of course there are loads of older ones always telling younger people that they aren’t living right and proper and there are plenty of younger ones who won’t take on advice (especially when it sounds like nagging.)

I’m talking about the selfishness that seems to be pervading society in the here and now, regardless of age, everyone is guilty of doing it at some point, but I feel it’s becoming more selfish and maybe even hostile.

Everyone should work hard, everyone should think about number 1 and focus on career building, etc, etc, but ever been in the middle of a conversation with someone and they just lose focus? Like suddenly their eyes flip to their phone screen, laptop, diary and they forget to even make a courteous grunt never mind actually answer what you’ve just said. Better still, when you bump into a colleague while their on shift and you try to be nice and give them a chance to get a tea or go to the bathroom but while you’re in the middle of trying to tell them how you are, they cut you off mid-sentence to wave and call over to some random friend who then approaches and goes into a full conversation with them – not even a pause for introductions or “I’m sorry, you were saying…?” and it would be considered too rude for the ignored party to butt-in to their conversation to say, “I wasn’t finished.”

It continues… sending someone a long text, maybe because you can’t or don’t have time for a phone call (especially when you can’t get them off the phone) and you’ve explained what you’ve been doing lately, currently whatever only to get a short, quick reply with a few seemingly random words making up a seemingly random sentence/phrase that by the way, has nothing to do with what I had just sent!

Another problem is on social media, people comment without really reading a post or body of text and sometimes become very hostile and angry towards the poster. Is there really a need for it? Has the world been altered by your hasty and spiteful comment? Often times I’ve seen a comment-argument go on for hours before another will charge in with their opinion or to deflate the situation by clarifying the misunderstanding.

A really scary situation is for those who are losing weight/becoming more healthy and who start an IG or Facebook page and just to see the overwhelming shit-storm of abuse these people get! They’re trying to improve themselves and just want the accountability factor, not to mention that they might be passing on a thread of inspiration! Maybe they saw someone else was brave enough to be posting pictures and progress online and they’ve decided to try it too, they probably will go on to inspiring others but seriously, what’s the point in the hate? I worry about these online trolls, it used to be a tongue-in-cheek type thing, you’d get the twat commenting on people’s work or pages with junk that could easily be removed, but now it’s evolved into twats hiding behind keyboards and encouraging people to kill themselves, telling them their ugly, that they’ll never be skinny/beautiful etc. What the hell?! I really hope people wouldn’t say stuff like that in real life (school bullies might have a differing opinion) but saying it over a computer doesn’t make it any less real. I only hope the changes in Internet Law actually allow for more to happen after any abuse has been reported, whether words are spoken or on a computer, they can still do damage and we all need to be more careful about how we act online.

Even something as menial as not responding to a FB message right away, now the sender can see if you’re online, can tell when and if you’ve read the message and as stalkery as it might sound it’s the nature of the beast, it is instant messaging it’s not email, you probably should respond or at least let the person know you maybe can’t answer fully yet. I’ve been guilty of it myself, only to then speak to the people later and find out they were worried I had fallen out with them. It sounds weird, but you’ll know what I mean if you’ve been on the receiving end of it.

Technology is changing and has changed how we communicate, I think it’s definitely for the better, we’ve never been so connected and I like feeling safe knowing that in theory I can always call my friends and family (if they ever bother to look at or answer their phones) but I wonder if things like courtesy and attention to the art conversation are falling aside out of distraction or a lack of empathy on how your half-hearted response might have a profound effect on another person. Maybe we’re too careless about how connected we are, maybe there’s a general sentiment that the old rules don’t apply anymore, we’re always available to message or get in touch with, so what does it matter that I didn’t end the conversation? That I left you hanging for hours expecting a further reply? That I started to write back but got distracted then went out and posted pictures of a night out (without you) onto FB and wrote multiple comments back and forth to others, while knowing your little green light was still on… waiting.

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