It’s time we had a bit of a talk.
We met in 2007. It was a heavy time for me, full of self-discovery and emotions and difficulties and, well, the general ephemera of life itself. You were so young, but then, so was I.
With you I felt so free, I felt so able to share and be myself, to not be afraid of anything. I could be anything or anyone with you, and you showed us all how the world could change. You were there when I needed friends, Twitter, gave me tweetups and connections spanning the globe. You were there when I publicly came out as trans. You’ve been there through hardness and joy, helped with my depression and shared in my victories.
I wouldn’t trade any of that for the world.
But, but, but.
It’s been a long time since I’ve felt safe with you, Twitter, a long time since I had that freedom. I’m afraid all the time, afraid that if I say the wrong thing that you’ll fly into a rage. Instead of seeing you treat my friends well, I see you hurt people and revel in it. I watch you ignore their pain and the harm that you’re doing.
But then, when I was so depressed for so long and I reached out to you for help, sometimes you were really there and you really cared, and that was really great.
Sometimes. Sometimes you weren’t there and I would still be talking to you and hoping that my friends would overhear, instead of just talking to my friends. I let you maintain my social network, and didn’t notice as you changed how I interact.
It hurt when I noticed that I was doing that, how I felt like I’d forgotten how to be a good friend, that I needed to re-learn how to connect.
The more I’ve grown to depend on you, the more you’ve drawn away. Sometimes you make me feel like I don’t matter and that what we had before doesn’t exist.
Maybe it never did.
The hardest part, Twitter, is seeing how abusive you’ve become.
Maybe you always were, and it just took me this long to notice. We have so much history together, history I don’t want to lose, and maybe that blinded me.
We’ve tried separation before, and I’ve always come crawling back. I’ve never said how smug I think you feel when I do, how you enjoy my dependency. You want me here, you love that I want it. I’ve never said how dirty I feel, when I do come back.
But I do come back. You’ve become a part of me, changed who I am and who I can become. I’ll keep coming back, and it’s time to accept that.
Instead of a teary departure, my dear Twitter, how we’re together is going to change. The way you’re so ephemeral has changed how I speak, but not for the better. I’m still going to rely on you, but I don’t want you to be the first to hear my thoughts.
Instead, I’m going to speak to myself first, and let you know I’ve said something.
Instead, I’m going to talk to my friends on my own, not speak to the wind and hope they hear.
Instead, Twitter, as we walk together, I’m going to lead.