Parenting · Parents

A New Daily Pressure

I volunteer for a parent support group in San Diego called The Parent Connection and tonight I am going to an event in support of another Board member’s efforts and to help recruit people for my public relations committee.  Normally, I’d attend the meeting in my usual frumpy manner and not give it another thought.  I figure that the women who attend these meetings are all moms (it kind of goes without saying) and they understand that I’ve had a long day — and sometimes a mom doesn’t feel like gussying up to go hang out with a bunch of other moms, let’s be honest.  It’s not that I’m lazy or anything, it’s just that it’s just so much more work now that I’m older, and it’s almost better to look really bad because then one gets sympathy and knowing glances and nods from the other moms.  They know I’ve had a bad day by how bad I look!

Yes I  show up in make-up and such, but normally it’d be a quick check in the mirror before I left to see how shiny I was from the day, using a couple rice paper blotters, reapply my lipstick and be good to go.  Now, though, I know pictures will be taken of everybody (including me) and then posted to Facebook.  Sigh.  No longer can  I attend events quietly and as  unobtrusively as possible because I know I’ll be tagged.  The new dreaded e-mail notification:  “You’ve been tagged!”  I’ve gotta look cute.  No more frumpy!  The new daily pressure is on!

I am already stressing about what I am going to wear tonight and whether or not I’ll need another shower today before I have to leave for the event.  You see, I just walked 3 miles with my daughter’s 5th grade class to duke it out at a modern day version game of dodgeball (we won ;-), and it is a particularly humid day, so my hair looks a little “pasted down,” my face is damp and shiny and I’m sure I may stink.  Do I spend another 40 minutes later getting ready for tonight’s meeting?  Of course I’m going to!  Are you kidding?  I’m going to be in pictures on Facebook where all my friends will see!

Right here, right now, I am going to circulate a petition suggesting that anyone who wants to upload my photo and tag me needs a photo release — I’m not kidding!  I want to go back to frumpy in the privacy of my volunteer work and not worry about how I look all the time.  These days, it seems the only time I get any privacy is at the grocery store!  There, I can walk down aisle after aisle, not worrying for one moment that somebody will take my picture and plaster it all over the Internet!

The same aforementioned photo release should apply to family members.  Last year, my sister took a bunch of pictures of me when we met up in Seattle.  It was the hottest day of the year and I had on the wrong clothes, so I was sweaty, crabby, thirsty, dusty, dealing with 3 kids in a foreign state, and uncomfortable.  She took pictures and when I least expected it, uploaded them and tagged me.  Oi.  Absolutely looking my finest, to be sure.    Why doesn’t anyone take a picture of me when I am in air-conditioning and I’ve just had my hair done?  It never happens!

So, if you’re tired stressing about how you look for your friends’ Facebook uploads (mobile and otherwise), sign here and let your voice be heard!


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