Social media helps students stay connected
By Emma Deines, Content Editor
Hidden among the allegations of social media addiction and poor time-management are teens who use social media to stay connected with their friends. Students at VHS shared their experiences with social media and why it is not always as negative as is displayed.
Sophomore Richard Barrett-Wood feels that social media should be judged on a case by case basis, and not a generalized description.
“[Saying social media is bad for you] is a really broad way to assess something that is extremely vast. It depends on what part of social media you are looking at and how long you use it for,” Barrett-Wood said. “It depends on each person and is not something you can just deal with in one statement.”
While some blame social media for the amount of mental health issues teens face, senior Joshua Kyles appreciates the fact that social media adapts to fit his interests.
“I don’t think it negatively affects my mental health. It’s something refreshing to look at every day. I get a feed of things that I am interested in and I can browse,” Kyles said.
Senior Rebekah Furr was grateful for social media during the COVID-19 pandemic, but recognizes the amount of stress it can cause.
“Sometimes I think it has a really positive impact [on my mental health], especially during COVID with being able to stay connected with people. But I also think there is so much drama, and especially with the state of the world it gets projected onto there a lot. Sometimes it is hard to avoid their stress,” Furr said.
Kyles also uses social media to stay connected with his friends, which is something many students appreciated over the COVID-19 pandemic.
“If they go on vacation I can see pictures. Group chats help me stay more connected with friends. I can see what they are doing if they post something on their story,” Kyles said.
Students can feel separated from their friends for many reasons besides the COVID-19 pandemic, and social media can play a big role in keeping them together.
“I like being able to see their stories and their posts and being able to keep up with their lives, especially my friends that have already graduated or are going to school somewhere else that I don’t get to see [as often],” Furr said.
Barrett-Wood notices that social media helps him feel closer to other people, even when they’re not having a conversation.
“Just being able to do [what you enjoy] and watch others do what … they enjoy is exciting and makes you feel like you know the person better,” Barrett-Wood said.