Are people on Facebook as happy as they seem?

Judging from the content of some people's Facebook posts and how frequently I see them come up on my Wall, it would seem that they have the perfect life.

For example, a girl I've known since elementary school, who has two kids from different fathers, posts almost every day that she LOVES her new boyfriend.

Then there are those women who engage in what I like to call "child worship." They post an endless barrage of baby pictures with such captions as "my happy family."

I'm not saying there's anything wrong with these types of posts, or that people are never being truthful in them, but why must they disseminate them so often?

Call me crazy, but when someone has to come out and say "I'm happy, look at me" several times each week, it smells of pretentiousness and leads me to think they're anything but.

I know that parents have it rough the first five or so years of a child's life, but what good would posts detailing their parenting travails do?

Instead, people try their best to project a positive attitude and create the impression that everything is hunky dory -- to the point where at times it comes off as disingenuous.

Perhaps the posts serve to convince these very people who post them that their personal struggles -- whether it's childrearing on two hours of sleep or navigating the crazy twists and turns of the dating market -- are not all that bad. In other words, the posts act as a form of self-therapy. And what better positive reinforcement than to receive "likes" from other people?

Indeed, some of us crave far more social validation than others. As we get older, it becomes harder and harder to stay in touch with friends and family. That's where Facebook comes in. People on the social networking site seem to have an impulse to share even the most mundane things ("my baby threw up," "my boyfriend gave me a hug") with everyone else.

My theory is that people who do this so often aren't as happy in their lives as they let on. It's as if they have to work harder to convince themselves (and others) that things are peachy keen. To me, they're putting up a facade and overcompensating for something they lack -- whether it's happiness, time, money, or true love.

Do you agree? As always, please comment and reshare. Thanks!

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