Every day another person is dragged by the court of public opinion for something they posted online or a rumor that's spread about them. As outside internet observers, most of us have no idea what someone's actual life is like.
Still, that doesn't stop our curiosity and herd mentality from taking over.
One dad on LinkedIn knows this all too well.
Just a few days ago, a Redditor posted a screenshot of a man's LinkedIn post about his newborn struggling with RSV.
'This morning I jumped on a plane to Scottsdale. At 11:43am I got a call from my wife that our one month old is being transferred to Primary Children's ER with RSV and having trouble breathing.'
'Normally, I would drop everything to be at the hospital with my wife and son. But I have obligations that absolutely need to get done in Scottsdale this week. I've never felt so helpless.'
'As I've struggled with emotions today, I've developed a much deeper appreciation for working parents. Fortunately, my wife is able to be at the hospital and we have an amazing support system watching our other kids while I'm away.'
'But I can't imagine what it would feel like if this wasn't the case. For those out there facing similar struggles, that don't have the support...keep going.'
People on Reddit were quick to flame him and accuse him of prioritizing work over the health of his baby.
Nobody has ever said on their deathbed, 'I wish I had concentrated more on my obligations in Scottsdale.'
Linkedin is even worse than Facebook because at least Facebook knows and acts like its a sh**hole while LinkedIn is all holier than thou while being a sh*thole.
This man being serious? I had the exact incident happen I was 5 hours away in Portsmouth. When my wife told me, I told them, didn’t wait for a response got in the car and got home asap like in the next few hours.
Work isn’t a commitment that comes over your kids' lives.
This man is peddling... *checks notes* DRUG TESTS?!
Oh, f**k everything about this guy. I hope his kid is safe and healthy and his wife has begun divorce proceedings.
This is 100% a brag post. Scottsdale is fancy. There is no commercial airport in Scottsdale. So either he flew to Phoenix or took a private plane to Scottsdale. Either way this dude is a complete f***ing d$%chebag. That poor child of his.
I made a post last Tuesday about arriving in Scottsdale and shortly after getting a call from my wife telling me she was taking our youngest to the ER. I was pretty vague in my post.
Not intentionally, but simply because my son was good and the point of my post was not my son—it was about how difficult it was being a working parent in that moment.
My son was struggling to breathe with RSV and it was so frustrating that I had just left town when all of this was taking place! It gave me a much deeper appreciation for working parents—especially those who are single or do not have a strong support system around them.
People took the vagueness in my post, threw it up on Reddit, and created a narrative that I am some corporate robot sacrificing the life of my child for business. I had no idea this was happening until I started receiving all sorts of TERRIBLE messages.
I was confused at first, then upset, then disgusted when I got this message on Facebook…“I’m so glad I found you here. Now I can track your kids better.”
I immediately deleted my initial post (though it didn’t matter, it was already up on Reddit, just a knee-jerk reaction) and hibernated my LinkedIn account. Say what you want about me, but start coming after my kids…Nope.
The hate emails and messages on other platforms continued, but it gave me time to make sure my settings on other platforms were private and to make sure my family was protected. After two days, I reinstated my account here and posted again.
It was terrifying for me. I hate conflict and I hate people insulting me when I don’t feel it’s warranted. Call me soft, but I just don’t like it. But, more than anything, this experience caused me to reflect on my own life and where I need to improve.
I went back, read my post, and frankly was even more astonished that out of all the things I’ve said… this is what caused such a ruckus! It must have been an easy target for someone to create a false story around to get some traction.
But, this also got me thinking… I generally try to be a kind person. In fact, I think I am kind most of the time. But, I can also be incredibly judgmental. As I thought about this, I became sick to my stomach.
Because thousands of people on Reddit were saying terrible things about me all based on a few sentences and an insanely false narrative. And this caused me to reflect on how many times I have done something similar in my own life.
It made me think of all the times I have misjudged someone based on false information or something I heard/saw that was taken completely out of context. Social media can sure be a fickle beast, but this lesson is one I will never forget.
I’m not a huge fan of New Year’s Resolutions, but if I have one going into 2023 it’s this: 'Judge less. Be kinder. Love more. Hurts to learn lessons the hard way, but I’m grateful for the experience because I needed the reminder. Love you all.'
People on LinkedIn were quick to commend him for taking the situation in stride.
Melissa M. wrote:
'Hey Cory, I'm so sorry this happened to you. I've been connected with you for a few years now and always appreciate and value your content. I also post daily content and what you just described is basically my worst nightmare.'
David H. wrote:
To me, it was clear that you would have been turning around if needed. For the haters, and conflict in general, be honest and transparent. Communicate how the situation is making you feel, and be vulnerable. This post is a good example of that.
I’m a believer that vulnerability and honesty invite the same and help to build strong relationships. Thanks for being vulnerable here Cory R. 🤙🏼
Matt M. wrote:
I seriously don't understand how anyone could have misconstrued that post. Like you said, people look at things too face-value without the understanding the context. I got your back brother!
The internet is nothing if not a whirlwind.