We don’t want solid communication anymore, we just want to receive as many texts as possible from multiple people even if no one can truly read us. We want as many notifications as possible even if no one is really noticing us. We’re obsessed with numbers and competitions that we sometimes forget what we’re really fighting for.
We come up with lies to make it sound like rejection was our idea, like it was our decision because we can’t get ourselves to admit to anyone that people leave us or that we’re unlovable because we’ve been conditioned to believe that if someone rejects us then something must be terribly wrong with us.
We send screenshots to our friends just to show them how much we’re wanted and how many people are ‘chasing’ us but we end up feeling all alone at night, with no to call or anyone who genuinely cares.
We claim that we can’t find real love as we keep filtering ourselves and our photos to be more desirable. We post things we know they’ll like. We tell them what they want to hear. We consult our friends to brew up the perfect response, the wittiest comeback or the funniest joke so they can see that we’re cool, attractive, charming and funny. We follow everyone else but ourselves.
I don’t understand when the shift happened. When did love switch from being a sacred bond between two people to a game of who can break more hearts and who cares less? When did love switch from commitment, loyalty, and communication to no strings attached, cheating, and ghosting?
Maybe it’s because the ego replaced the heart so people don’t love for the sake of loving, they love for the sake of feeling good about themselves, they love for the sake of instant gratification and they love for the sake of constant validation.
Maybe it’s because social media replaced the real world so now people are searching for more followers, more likes and more ways to show that their lives are picture-perfect instead of looking at the bigger picture.
I don’t know what it is but I know that we’re all seeking attention more than ever and the smallest setback makes us so insecure so we use people to make us feel secure again and reassure us that we’re important. We’re all wanting things and people we can’t have and it’s becoming a race and a game nobody is winning.
Because even if you win, it’s still going to be flimsy and temporary, it’s still disingenuous and it doesn’t ease your loneliness. It doesn’t solve the real issue. It doesn’t make you feel loved or appreciated or respected. It just makes you feel replaceable, inauthentic and ultimately a loser.
Rania Naim is a poet and author of the new book All The Words I Should Have Said, available here.