Broke London

A car crash guide to surviving life

How to Spot your Parents on Social Media

I’d like to start this off by saying that my mother is MUCH better at life than I am.

She’s never late, she’s always on the go, she juggles four fairly testing children and pretends to enjoy it. She can pound all the wine and then somehow make it to her spinning class whilst i cry into my pillow and try not to be sick and she never gets her card declined buying a pint of milk.
She’s a marathon-running, super intelligent, annoyingly attractive, ridiculously funny boss woman.
But there’s one teensy chink in the armour which provides us all with many a moment of amusement.

Show me a twenty something with a social media savvy parent and i’ll show you a liar. No one, least of all me, is insinuating that parents are BAD at social media…We just seem to conduct ourselves differently.
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Questionable profile pictures
This is not necessarily limited to parents – my friends grandfather once, completely adorably, somehow changed his profile picture to a stock image of a torch.
When questioned he maintained that he ‘didn’t have Facebook’. Right.
The fact that a profile picture is designed to show everyone who you are is often cast aside to make room for stock images of cars, weird internet memes and pictures of your family from five years ago looking unattractive.
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Not sure that’s what Facebook intended but hey we appreciate the sentiment.
They love getting involved
Sharing posts, Facebook polls, Which Mr Man character are you type quizzes – rest assured that these are being put to spectacular use by your parentals.
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Not sure where any one member of your family is? Check your parents Facebook page – they’ll for sure have checked them in.
Similarly, if your mum hasn’t shared at least 10 non-relevant memes that end with ‘most of you won’t like and share this, let’s see how many will’ are they even your mum?
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That’s before we’ve even covered the biggest culprit of all time: The misinformed alarmist.
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They have no problem being totally savage
Case in point. The other day I posted an article I’d contributed to, for The Debrief, to my timeline. It centred around the exceedingly fun time in my life when I’d been made redundant and I was quoted as saying my main fear was the prospect of ‘having to move home to live with my parents’.
My mother, proud owner of three live-at-home siblings, commented back FOR THE WHOLE WORLD TO SEE “Wish your siblings felt the same”.
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She shoots, she scores, no fucks given.
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Be more Wendy everyone, be far more Wendy.
They think all photos of you are acceptable
“Mum has tagged you in 38 photographs in the album ‘just hanging out in the kitchen’”
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Does anything make your blood run colder than this?
No mother, I don’t want ten hundred pics of me in pyjamas and a giant chin spot up on the internet thank you very much. Neither do it I want it to be your cover photo. THE END.
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This also applies for flashback pictures. No, it is not your fault that I was an actual ogre as a child (well it sort of is your genes parents but we won’t go there) who used to consider carb loading a competitive sport (would have taken home a gold) but it is your fault that there is now a picture of me on the internet, looking like a baby manatee in a pair of dungarees, and that a boy I was dating saw it and subsequently sent me a screenshot of it.
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This also applies to commenting on flashback photos – When my sister who I obviously had done some grievous wrong to in a previous life uploaded a picture of us when I was in full Shrek mode and also, sadly, wearing a pair of WHITE CYCLING SHORTS, my mother decided it was totally appropriate to comment
“They were your favourite. You said they kept your tummy warm”
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Oh what fresh hell is this.
They have no filter
PSA to all parents out there. Under no circumstances is it ok to comment on a status reading “Well that was the day from hell” with “oh no is your diahorrea bad again?”
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Seriously. NOT OK.
Next time you ask me why on earth I’m still single I will take you through a 58 slide powerpoint detailing every time you shot that horse in the face shall I?
I fear that these types don’t realise that the whole world can actually read their comments. Whilst my mother is usually au fait with social media she will think nothing of commenting on a profile picture of me and a pal with
“Who’s that?”
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“You look the nicest”
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Or…most famously…
“I didn’t mean to like this…I was trying to zoom in…not that I don’t like it”
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Luckily the one thing my own mother is not guilty of is the over emotional outpouring but that is also absolutely rife.
“oh my darling heart of a girl, no one is more clever or strong or brilliant than you. You are the most precious part of my soul and have been the greatest gift of my life. I love you so much it hurts!”
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Thanks mum…not sure it’s an entirely appropriate response to my “Just sold some shoes on ebay – woo!” but cool I’ll take it.
They love a good sign off
Hands up who has seen this on social media
“You look lovely darling. Hope to see you soon – love from Jane”
Jane bbz I know it’s you, your name is right there…. It’s like above the…you know what never mind.
Or even worse
“all our love Mary, Pete, Susie, Max and Penny the dog!”
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Send us a card Mary this is not what Facebook is for.
The simple misunderstanding
Quite obviously there is a level of incomprehension when it comes to social media.
There was the time when my mum believed that just typing messages into her status box would result in them magically appearing in the intended recipients inbox. Which in turn resulted in cryptic messages such as “See you there at three” appearing on her wall or (more terribly) “What on earth did you invite HER for?”. EVERYONE CAN SEE THAT….how can I get that into your…you know what…don’t worry.
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There was also the magical moment where my grandma believed that the pictures she saw in her Instagram timeline (yes my grandma has Instagram because she’s also a BOSS) were being personally sent to her by the poster.
This also led her to believe that David Beckham was basically stalking her. Which frankly he should be if he had a smidge of sense.

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They’re all really nice and supportive of each other
I honestly believe that I could post a status letting everyone know I was with child and my mother could put up a picture of her new wheelbarrow and hers would receive infinitely more engagement than mine.
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artists impression of my mums mates to the most mundane updates

“Ooh lovely barrow!”
“I’ve got one like that at home!”
“Who’ll be pushing that beauty around the garden eh?”
“here’s a pic of my barrow”
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I’m actually really quite jealous and in awe of the sheer enthusiasm I see every day on my timeline between my parent’s friends. It honestly is really lovely and the main reason why, all jokes aside, I refuse to turn my nose up at our parents hitting up social media.
And for anyone raising their eyebrows at this let me ask you – when was the last time you put up a blurry picture of your dog and received 28 likes and 10 comments?
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My mother achieves that on a daily basis. Who’s the influencer now EH?
And finally, they drink and facebook
We all know the golden rule is to stay off social media when you’ve had a few.
My mother and her pals know no such boundaries.
I won’t go too far into this except to say that HYPOTHETICALLY if you reply to your own comment thinking you are in conversation with someone else when you are actually just discussing tonight’s episode of Suits with YOURSELF then HYPOTHETICALLY it may be time to go to bed.

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