How Social Media Reveal Who We Truly Are?

In nowhere in time and place has social media been more prevalent and potent in its presence and force than our present time--virtually one-third of the world's population own a social media profile, and almost 80% of the United States' population has a social networking profile. Those profiles--Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, etc.-- allow us to polish, present, and exclude many aspects of our behavioral patterns as well as our characteristics; and many hastily and wrathfully claim and complain that those personas that we present on our social media profiles are nothing but spurious, deceiving attempts to hide who we really are and present who we really aren't. Albeit that claim has some legitimate fragments of truth in it, I want to advance the unusual idea that claims the opposite: what if social media profiles help reveal who we truly are, or at least, who we really want to be? And are the "masks" that we wear a foreign part of our persons, or are they an inextricably attached parts of our core?

We all have “abnormal” sexual fetishes, frustrations, and inclinations: some of us like sexual masochism, some like feet, others are simply aroused by hands, etc. In many cultures, we can’t really expose those seemingly unhealthy sexual urges, and in other cultures, such as that of Saudi Arabia, you never cease to encounter oppressed women who are forced to adopt the style of Batman’s clothing; thus, it will not only be hard to express one’s feelings and sexual attraction to his or her partner, but it will be harder to find a partner in the first place. Consequently, it is not a mere coincidence, then, that six out of top the ten countries that watch the most porn are Muslim states— if the medium of reality prohibits and discourages us to express our basic, humanely natural needs in it, then, we’ll, secretly, and sometimes openly, resort to other mediums— such as the internet, and in this case, pornography— where our expressions will be expressed rather than suppressed and rotted. And for clarification, I’m not advocating for a morally improvised society; I’m simply saying that living eighteen years of your life not seeing the hands of the woman, except your mothers’ when she’s washing the dishes, is insanely unhealthy and immensely vicious for our psychological and emotional health and well-being.

According to prominent psychologists, from a very young age, we are taught and sometimes coerced to abide by social and societal norms: we should suppress our violent and unwarranted sexual inclinations, we should not have sadist or misogynistic approach to people, in short, we shall shy away from expressing all our needs, urges, and thoughts—due to social and cultural constraints that differ from one culture to another. We grow up, we form and solidify our own values and beliefs—sometimes the widely unacceptable ones—to be confronted by the harsh reality that ostracization and brutal rejection are the inevitable consequences of our total self-expression: we can’t call a woman a fat pig because our peers will label us as a misogynistic(forget about big Donnie, Trump), we can’t blatantly express our rebellious, categorical opposition to our government because, then, we’ll never be able to safely kneel to pick up a soap anymore(in despotic regimes at least). In other words, we can’t really be our full selves in normal, everyday life, because we are all too crazy, too abnormal, too selfish in our societies’ perspective, which in many cultures leave us devoid of any medium from which we can express our true or ideal selves.

In social media profiles, constraints and potential rejections are less of an obstruct than they are in real life; we can like whatever pages we please, we can comment freely and critically, we can align ourselves with individuals who ardently share our beliefs and “aberrations”, we can be the homosexuals, the agnostics, the misogynistic—using fake profiles, we can wear a “mask” that really reveal and express our true, ideal sel In real life, we might be perceived as the aloof, impotent, benevolent, flamboyant guy; but when given the chance and the medium, we’ll be the sadistic, callous, malevolent, villainous guy who derives pleasure from inflicting pain and suffering on others. In short, we should pay meticulous attention to how our beloved ones and potential partners use their social media profiles, what sites they constantly visit, what aspects of their personas they choose to reveal and present because their inner selves, their insecurities, and their genuine desires and preferences can be pinpointed and partially fathomed by changing how we perceive and understand people’s use of social media and the internet, because, in real life, we tend to adapt fake personas that enable us to assimilate in the miseries of our realities.

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