Pinterest- the happy place where people go to catalogue all the lovely things they would like in their lives. A pinboard to collect all the nice things you see online and share with other people. Sounds so harmless doesn’t it? Well it isn’t.
Popular pins on Pinterest are collections for the home, fashion and style, kids, weddings. All lovely. You can just spend hours looking at all the lovely things and pinning them and sharing them and its all lovely fantasy land niceness. Then you start to think hey I could do that. Wrong. Just because it looks easy and nice on pinterest, it isn’t and do you know what you are left with? Emptiness and desolation because you realise not only are there all these people out there with time to conduct intricate crafts with their coordinating dressed kids in their perfect house, they then have time to photograph their efforts and pin them. That is how perfect they are. Meanwhile I’m sitting amidst chaos in my average house while my kids draw on themselves or sellotape their artwork, which they came up with by themselves, all over the walls.
Some of the things the Pinterest parents are doing with their kids -
Naturally they do these crafts in “their craft corner”. Although I have my doubts that some of these crafts were actually completely by kids. It sometimes makes me feel better to think the parents pack their kids off to school then spend hours completing these crafts, photographing them and uploading to Pinterest and pretending their kids did it. I give my kids some paper and markers with the wrong tops and my poor kids don’t have a craft corner.
There are no ham sandwiches in school lunch boxes on Pinterest. No. This is what exists in Pinterest lunch boxes.
What time would you have to get up to make school lunches like this every morning? Do they not sleep? All Pinterest has done for my parenting skills is highlight them as being inadequate and make me thankful my children do not know that other children are living this kind of life.
Then there are the “for the home” boards which basically just leave you feeling shit about your home. I used to make myself feel better by thinking its good to have these ideas pinned and ready to go for when I get rich but then it dawned on me if I win the lotto I wont have time for Pinterest because I will be so busy spending money so there was no point in pinning pretty home things any more. The thing that hurts me most about the for the home boards though are the playrooms
But but but playrooms are for kids….. Kids thrash playrooms. Is this only true in my house? Our playroom consists of broken toys, scattered lego and paper everywhere. I don’t go in there. I can’t go in there. Occasionally if there is a bad smell the husband will venture in and try to sort it out so the kids don’t contract MRSA but otherwise its a dead space in our house where toys go to die. Then I look at the Pinerest playrooms and a little part of me dies too.
Despite Pinterest making me consistently feel like a shit parent who lives in an average house and berating myself daily for not having a clearer career path and for choosing the wrong undergraduate subjects in the 90’s and if I hadn’t Id have more disposable income to live a Pinterest inspired life, I still kept going with it. Have you seen the birth announcement boards on there? They sucked me in for a while.
When we found out about baby number 4 and were ready to tell people, I said to the husband oh we should get cowboy boots and write May 2014 on the soles of them and go lie down in a meadow, get a professional photographer to take our picture and announce the pregnancy that way. He wasn’t really into that idea. No Pinterest announcement for me so.
I realised things were going too far though when I start looking at wedding boards. If you want to see Pinterest in its shining glory the wedding boards are where it’s at.
Thing is though, I have no reason to be looking at wedding boards. 99% of the time I’m very happily married and I have no plans ever to get married again. I worked out that even if I was to get married again it would be years away. We’d need a few years of not getting on, then five years to get a divorce , then time to meet a new spouse so even if we started to split up soon I could be close to 50 before getting married again. Too old to host a grand vintage style wedding in the meadow I was banned from having my pregnancy announcement photo shoot in. Or, in summation, a complete waste of fucking time looking at wedding boards.
See that’s what Pinterest became to me – an abyss that sucked away all my time and left me feeling like shite. The temporary high from looking at the pretty things wasn’t worth it anymore. And like any good addict, I was pinning in secret. Sitting at my laptop innocently it looked like I could be working or doing something useful. Nobody watching me could see me pinning things for the wedding I was never going to have or the cutesy school lunches I was never going to make. If I whipped out a scrapbook , glue and some magazines and started sticking pages with ideas of nice things at my desk at work or at home when I should be doing something else, an intervention would be staged pretty damn quick but nobody knew. So the wedding boards broke me, I staged my own intervention and quit Pinterest. As a result I have more free time and don’t feel so bad about my lack of homemaking skills or the fact we don’t have a craft corner or I didn’t have wild flowers at my wedding. Its a win-win.
All images via Pinterest