“Do not post your issues on social media”. It is childish to put your problems out there. Find a way to address them”. This is advocacy & activism week of the #winterABC2021 & we’re post to be standing up for something. Today I am standing up for those who personally & or physically have no one to talk to but social media & against those who always find amusement in shutting them down. We have come across posts of this kind in our different Social Media. Where people are dictating on others about what to post yet I have never seen it recommended anywhere when I am opening accounts on any social media that “Thou shall only post content where thee are happy so that you can please they? Have you? If you have, please send me the screenshot, the link. I need to be woke.
Therefore, I have come to realize that we our very own selves are the ones that are fueling the depression that we keep trending around. We are the ones that keep asking where humanity is headed to yet we are the ones that keep fuelling it low key. Why are we forcing people to keep up with a lifestyle that they cannot afford? Borrowing clothes to look lit, forcing to hangout in places where they cannot afford to be. Girls sleeping for tickets to events just to keep up appearances. Like as if there is a prize for having the flyest social media account on line.
How can someone come out seeking help and the best we can do is to tell them that it is childish to bring forth our ‘dark’ issues online. That they are best resolved off of the internet. I thought it’s called social media for a reason not please me media. How does that even work? Where are our hearts? Where is our humanity? The world is destroying itself slowly by slowly. People on suicide through depression and we’re telling people that when they post their issues they are childish? When people come out for help and we tell them that it is childish, so when are we going to help them? What is a mature person supposed to post? I need a memo. Are we even intending to help them? Are we even worthy of being friends? If you cannot help someone then shut the fuck up, scroll away and ignore. You may just as well unfriend them and keep the happy lot that are entertaining you on your TLs.
Depression is a killer and when someone comes out depressed them you say it ain’t real. People are out there depressed. People are out there suffering. People are out there fighting their demons and instead of bringing them closer, we are busy calling them childish? Maybe before someone friends you you should tell them to also keep it sunny.
Just because you can silently afford to handle your issues silently doesn’t mean anyone else can. Just because you have contacts that at one click away can help you out doesn’t mean any one else does. We are not at the same point in life. We do not have the access to the same resources, cool friends and supportive families. Nope. We are different. And so by the time someone comes out for help then it is deep. Then it is real. People are suffering. People are desperate. People are hurting. People are abused, bruised and stripped. Cheated. Betrayed. People are depressed. We are destroying ourselves. We are destroying humanity. Discrediting it. So unless we listen and offer some help, we should just shut the fuck up and stop talking about depression any way. Are you the social media police officer in charge of happiness? For this matter, if you are out there depressed and need someone to listen to you, you can hit me up in my DM. I may not be in position to help you financially or physically but I will listen and talk to you best way I can. I hear “You’re posting childish”. Fuck you. Yes I am pissed so bad I am boiling. God.
Sometime in 2020, during one of those (#MeToo campaigns), There was a social media topic about people’s characters. Commonly, such topics involve qualities one looks out for in a partner. Amongst a number of comments on a certain post I can’t seem to find anymore was a comment by Rashida Namulondo, a poet and actress. I was so captivated by a fellow creative’s comment that I had to capture it and reproduce it for the world to see how beautiful she described qualities of her potential partner.
So, below she said…
‘’People are not perfect! It depends on what you are looking for. Personally I want a good person, be it a romantic relationship, work relationship or friend. This is how I know a good person that I want in my life.
How he treats people around him especially support staff like waiters and cleaners. How he treats colleagues under his supervisor and he is in a superior position than them. It’s very easy to see someone’s manners in these situations of power play.
How open is he to the fact that he’s still learning, and that other people’s opinions and perspective on life counts just like his? Basically, I can’t handle people who think they are better than others and have this ‘I am right’ attitude.
How does he handle conflict? Let’s say for example, he bumps into someone on the road. Does he accept blame or goes on cursing and denies blame. Now, I know even the best of people curse on Ugandan roads but there are people who go beyond. Also, is he the kind who can be able to take the courage to mend things whether it’s his fault or not?
Does he have a plan in life and is he working courageously towards it? If he has no plan, is he the kind committed and interested in learning? Does he seek to improve his skills and take an extra mile to learn new things and skills? I can’t handle people who don’t strive to grow and be better than they were yesterday.
Is he a grateful person? Does He acknowledge the mercy of God? The help of others who have helped him? Is he grateful and is he able to meaningfully acknowledge help?
Does he take feedback? Is he able to take feedback without turning you into a bad person for giving him negative feedback and does he strive to change?
How does he speak of people when they are not around? It’s okay to complain once in a while about someone who has wronged you at work etc. but constantly speaking evil of someone? Noo! Does he ever acknowledge the good things even the worst his enemies could have or has done for him in his life? What is his relationship with his relatives? Even the bad ones.
Now being a nice person doesn’t mean to be a push over. Can he stand up for himself respectfully without insulting others? Does he have boundaries and non-negotiables? And can he tell me the truth every single day even if it hurts?
Finally, does he see me? Does he even notice I am there? How well does he know my dreams? My goals. My ambitions. (This question is key because it can only mean a person listens when you talk or even when you don’t.) I know people I hardly talk to but they can recite my dreams, my hopes, things that upset me and those that bring me joy off their lips. And there are those I am close to who even after so many conversations have no slightest idea about who I am, what I hope for, what angers me and what are my dreams.
A person who truly sees you. Knows your soul because they feel it. That is the one that truly cares about you.
NB. These may seem so many things but very often you will be surprised that a good person ticks off all these boxes.
Rashida is a Ugandan based actress, stage director, and award-winning poet. She is the founder of the Sophie Muwanika Institute of Art for Change. A nonprofit organization that uses theatre for peace building.