Has Social Media Alleviated Depression Among Adolescents?

So my friends Kay*, Es* and Vee* were debating among themselves on the topic given above. They were conducting it openly and so, I got to listen to the content.

They started about how social media can cause insecurity in an individual. About how a person would see someone going out and having fun and compare that to their own “boring” life. Kay* wanted to counter that by referring to me. I used to be really fat, back in my 10th grade. Inspired by people like Aziz “Zyzz” Shavershian and Marc Fitt, I started working out, got thin and got rid of my insecurity.

Well, let me share my views too.

As many of you know, I used to be fat a long time and felt ostracized. In hindsight, I look back in wonder. Has our society regressed so much, to the extent where people are judged according to what they look like? Having people constantly poke fun at my obesity ripped away my confidence and made me insecure. I couldn’t make myself talk to the people I wanted to, always fearing I would be rebuffed and humiliated. I set myself apart, not wanting to get hurt.

But I wanted to change. I wanted to be accepted for who I was. If society wanted me to get thin in order to achieve that, then I was going to do that. I might have been conforming to society’s ideals rather than my own, jumping on the bandwagon. At that point, I was too far gone to care. I researched a lot. Weight lifting was something I’d always set my heart upon. So I took to it. I soon came across Aziz “Zyzz” Shavershian., someone who had a cult following in his quest for an ‘aesthetic’ body. I watched videos and read articles about him to get an idea of what he represented. I found that he understood that people are more inclined to give you a chance to mingle when you look built. I was hooked.

Thanks to Zyzz, I lost fat, became decently muscular and lost most of my insecurity. I consider myself lucky. Maybe if I hadn’t had that inspiration that changed my life for the better, I might have remained sad and unhappy all throughout high school. How many others are there, who haven’t had that chance, and are still unhappy? No one is born sad about how fat they are. It is society that molds them that way, make them fell like they are somehow inferior to everyone else. I had a friend called Es*. Now he was very fat. But not once did I see him bothered about it. Why? Because the people around him accepted that about him and never taunted him. Not in a spiteful way anyway. Isn’t he a living example of the point I’m trying to make?

Social media has only served to exacerbate the situation. People can now instantly showcase how ‘awesome’ and ‘cool’ their lives are. This heightens the insecurity in those who think their life ‘sucks’ and is ‘boring’. They gaze with envy at the life they wish they could have. Some are often taunted on how ‘lame’ and ‘uncool’ they are. Do you know how many have been driven to suicide? Driven mad by the constant needling, they chose to take a drastic option. Had society been more forgiving, they would not have been driven off the cliff.

While social media can be a platform to uplift those that remain in the shadows of the crowd, it can also be used to send those trying to reach the spotlight back into the shadows. It is entirely up to our discretion. The way we use the power of media can make or destroy a person’s life. It is a frightening power, not one to be misused.

You have a choice. Make it.

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