Walking in stilettos is an act of balance, confidence, and forward momentum.
And if that’s not a metaphor for life then I don’t know what is.
I am active online in three different ways. Flickr is for photos, my website is for photos, my writings, activism, reviews, and shameless self-promotion, Twitter is for quick thoughts and timely photos. For example, I’ll post pictures of red dresses around Valentine’s Day.
I admit I’ll post a photo on Twitter if I am feeling neck-deep in my boy life. Don’t get me wrong, I heart my boy life, but sometimes when I am consumed by boy life responsibilities, such as work stuff, it’s fun to look at pictures of my other life and post a photo that makes me happy. I am aware I will get comments and likes, and this does give my self-esteem a little boost. We all like to be told we’re cute, or pretty, or get a compliment on our outfit.
But like any type of social media, Twitter can bring out the worst in people, or least the creepiest and most inappropriate. When I tweet a photo, I try to predict the reaction I might get. If the picture is of a bright yellow dress I expect (and prepared for) certain types of comments. Photos from my lingerie shoot will likely generate comments as well, but they will be of a certain nature and trend more towards the sexual responses.
And yes, I know, some of you are thinking “that’s what you get for posting pictures of you in a bra and panties”.
I don’t need you to point that out. As I said, I try to anticipate comments and use that as my guide as to whether or not I should post a picture. I also believe that there are expectations of anyone using social media and they should be respectful. Yes, it’s a picture of me in stockings but for god’s sake could you please be a gentleman? Could you please not use those specific emojis when commenting.
I try to balance photos on Twitter between sexy and cute (at least I think they’re sexy or cute) and I try not to take myself too seriously. I try not to send the message that this side of me is a fetish or a kink, or that by posting photos it doesn’t mean I am looking for, ah, company. But these comments, messages persist. Thankfully it’s easy to ignore/block/mute/report users on most forms of social media. I have taken down photos and deleted tweets, particularly if the comments were vitriolic.
And yes, I know some girls like us LIKE these comments. I know for some of us they are validation of how one looks or acceptance of who they are. And you do you! No judgement, promise. But comments with nothing but the eggplant and wagging tongue emojis does nothing for me. It has the opposite effect if anything. And yes, I know there are men (and yes, I know, NOT ALL MEN) out there that enjoy making women feel embarrassed or worse. I know some men think that it’s a compliment when they say they want to have, ah, carnal experiences with a girl. Gross. A man wanting to be intimate with me does absolutely nothing for me.
I don’t post any pictures for anyone but for myself. I am confident in how I look (usually), I am confident in who I am. I admit I do enjoy the retweets and the follows and the non-sexual comments. I do get a little kick of self-esteem when someone likes my tweet. But I don’t need it. When I first started to be really active online I craved the attention, I wanted the validation, I wanted the likes. As my self-esteem grew I needed less attention from social media.
But social media is not all bad. It does give me some guidance on what people like based on what type of response a picture gets. When I started to post pictures from my lingerie shoot, I expected more likes, etc than a picture of a new dress. I was wrong. And I’m glad I was wrong. I think, for the most part, pictures of me in a dress and cuter and sexier than photos in lingerie. Well, I think they’re sexy or cute.
People will try to burst your bubble and dull your sparkle. People will laugh, stare, and ridicule a girl like us. Anonymous trolls will send pictures of their anatomy and say disparaging things online. We mustn’t let that stop us from being who we are, we must keep moving forward and beyond the slime.
See? Balance, confidence, and moving forward.