Yesterday evening, a friend of mine (for the sake of privacy I will refer to her as Consuela) posted a notice on Facebook, requesting any help to find a doula that could help a couple of first time parents living in a particular part of New York. Consuela, mind you, has two beautiful children. Not too long after she posted this notice, someone posted congratulations on her pregnancy. Consuela immediately responded that, to be clear, she was not the person having the baby — she was just looking for people that she knew — again, people (unlike her) who were first time parents.
Not long after, someone else commented that they too were at first thinking that she was the pregnant one — and that she was glad that the matter was clarified.
Clarified? The initial post was that the doula was needed for a couple of first time parents. Since the second comment came from someone who is friends with Consuela, I would imagine that they have known her long enough to be aware that she has not just one but two children — and has had at least one child for a good number of years. The expression “first time parents” should have made it immediately clear that the pregnant person in question was not Consuela — not to mention the fact that Consuela has spent the last couple of years dealing with medical issues and has stated without any sense of confusion that she and her husband (Pietro, for the sake of this story) had to stop at two for the sake of her health.
I think that the problem is a large one, and it is that people tend to skim what their friends write and then comment based on the little information that they have gleamed. While I try to avoid reading comments entirely, when I do read comments I get the feeling that many people will make a lengthy comment based on the headline of an article — without any consideration to what the actual subject of the article addresses.
Is the issue that people are posting too much and so we as a whole don’t allow ourselves time to carefully read what is being posted? Yet at the same time, I can’t help but think that if you are going to make a comment, you should be thoroughly familiar with that on which you are commenting so you don’t, for example, ask a question that was addressed directly in the text. So be careful — read and think and rethink and then comment!