So. Much. This. I have a daughter graduating from high school this year. One week before the coronavirus shut down schools in our area, she had just received her graduation cap, gown, and tassel; announcements, seals, name cards, thank you cards… The whole package. I remember going through them with her that day, explaining what was what and how to fit the name cards inside the announcements. She tried on her cap and gown. I took some pictures. I never posted them to social media. She did not need salt poured in the wound.
She had also just purchased her prom dress. With her own money. From a part-time job she has been working for nearly 3 years. She has busted her ass to maintain a steady school/work/life/social balance and will be graduating with academic honors. This is on top of some unimaginable tragedies she has suffered over the past two years, and with the start of her senior year, mono and pneumonia. She was so looking forward to walking across that stage at graduation. To say that I am proud of her would be an understatement.
Just last night she made me aware of this senior picture Facebook trend. I’m not on Facebook very much these days so I had not seen it. She told me how all of her friends were gathering on Instagram to give each other support, grieve, and be angry about this seemingly tone deaf Facebook trend. These young folks are really hurting right now, and this is certainly not helping.
Thank you so much for writing this piece. I’m sure that none of the people participating in this trend are aware of how hurtful it is, but it’s hurtful nonetheless. They don’t realize they are taking a situation that’s not in any way about them and making it about them. I think if most people really thought this through, they would not have participated. This is just another reason why I’ve gotten fed up with Facebook over the years: Facebook, unlike any other social media platform I’ve witnessed, has a way of subtly peer-pressuring people into blindly following these trends.