People struggle with connection to social media apps


Johanna Heckman

More and more kids are using and interacting on Instagram.

Instagram and Facebook have always targeted a younger demographic, particularly girls.

This has become more prominent now that an interview with a past Facebook employee was made it into the national spotlight. Frances Haugen said that the algorithm for these social media platforms target teenage girls, from the ads that pop up on the explore page to just posts of other girls. Many teenage girls already struggle with body image issues, but having social media makes it worse. 

Instagram and Facebook are targeting an age demographic that could affect students in Bellwood. Two students from Bellwood-Antis High School said that Instagram can add on to mental health issues but isn’t the only cause for their mental health issues. They find that people are just blaming suicide on Instagram because it is an easier fix than finding the real cause.  

It isn’t just Instagram and Facebook; it is TikTok too. Young people use social media to grasp someone’s attention, whether it is by making their explore pages have dogs, people, or anything that they might have shown interest in. 

An abundant amount of teenagers post on some social media platforms. When teenagers post they get obsessed with what others may think of them. Comments , likes, and reposts dictate whether or not they take down the post or not.  

The owners of Instagram and Facebook argue that they can’t control what social media influencers post. If it’s about body image, they can’t just take it down because it is making one person have body image issues. They get messages everyday complaining about posts and, they say, they do their best to take down what is needed. That includes nudity, bullying, and inappropriate actions. 

Teenagers struggle with mental health everyday whether through school, social media, or bullying. Usually when people have suicidal thoughts it isn’t just one contributing factor; there are many things that go into it. 

Highschool guidance counselor Mrs. McNelis  says that social media can be beneficial and harmful depending on how you decide to use a particular app, whether that is reaching out to other people on the app or posting pictures with their friends and family. Instagram can be harmful if the people posting the pictures become obsessed with others feedback and how they portray them.

Mrs. McNelis also says that it is important to control your social media usage, and to remember that only having online friends could damage your social skills in real life.