The dark side of travel social media

Traveling (and life) is not always glamourous. Sometimes it’s easy to get caught up in the negative thoughts you have when you look at other people’s pictures/posts and think about how happy they look and how much your life sucks.

While I think this is a totally normal human thing, and I also think it’s normal to want to focus on the positives of your life when sharing memories, I don’t want to look back on my pictures and writings with no recollection of the sad times. How can you understand happy if you don’t see sad?

So tonight, here are some of my pictures that look like happy travel pictures but really remind me of a sad time.

There’s also a guy in the picture….
A bit before this picture, a group of guys were literally following me around Istanbul. I tried to escape, but one caught up and started groping me. In public. I freaked out, but a fellow tourist was the one who eventually got him off. We started sightseeing together and talking about life (he took this picture for me), but it turned out he was also creepy (just not foricibly creepy). I am still disturbed by this today.

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My boyfriend and I got in a major fight during this hike in Alaska. I literally wanted nothing to do with him, but for some reason, we decided to finish it together and try to take happy pictures. We literally just smiled on camera and then glared at each other off camera.


Here’s a lunch in Rome with my boyfriend again where, while I don’t remember why we were mad, I do remember that we didn’t talk during the whole meal because we were so annoyed with each other. I was even texting some friends to see if I could crash at their place instead of our hotel! By the way, I promise we’re in a happy relationship, and I travel with other people.

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This picture just makes me a little sad about how fake pictures can be. You literally are just moving around pretending to be cute or thoughtful or in the moment, not really enjoying what’s around you. Once I put my phone away though, I was able to be fully mind blown by the beach again- as opposed to 85% with my phone out (by the way, this is Makapu’u beach in Hawaii).

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I remember being sad about not having that many old friends when taking this picture. I mean I love my friends and my family! But it felt like compared to the people my close friend and I were exploring with, I didn’t have much. Some people have even have friends since grade school! I don’t even think I have Facebook friends from grade school.

2 thoughts on “The dark side of travel social media

  1. Be careful out there. Being followed by a group of men and groped in public? That’s not a good situation to be in. Never travel alone. Be safe out there and put the phone down so you can be alert of your surroundings. Don’t look like a victim. That shit is no joke.

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