I’m fascinated by the things people share and do not share. This is all the more interesting with social media. How do we decide what to post to about? How do we decide what to talk about?
One of the things that interests me is the different ways happiness and sadness are handled.
Happiness tends to be a very public thing. It is comfortable to write or talk about success and happiness.
Sadness is not a very public thing. A person who is sad is conveying an element of brokenness or need. After hearing about sadness people get uncomfortable. Some are quick to feel obligation to help or express pity. At the very least hearing about sadness casts a shadow.
I found a recent honest blog post by Allie Brosh about depression to be very interesting: Allie Brosh writes about depression
Depression is foreign to me, yet I appreciate Allie’s words. She uses humor and graphics to say things that would be very uncomfortable in direct communication.
As I think about happiness and sadness two points come to mind:
1. It is good to be honest with yourself about sadness, even if it is shielded from the public.
2. It is good to realize that many of the “happy” people around you are dealing with some level of sadness.