Social Media Problems in Students’ Lives

Imagine being friends with someone for more than half your life just for social media to ruin it in an instant.  

Unnecessary arguments get more serious once social media has touched base in your life. The early 2000’s is when social media was first introduced and would become nothing but a dependency for teens. For example, 26 percent of teens “have fought with a friend because of something that first happened online or because of a text message,” according to the Pew Research Center

Proviso East students have had a fair share of fake friends over the years, especially seniors who are finally in their last year of high school. Senior Akyla Flowers gives a statement of how a friendship ended because of social media. Flowers stated, “Social media ruined my friendship because I got to see that they were making slick comments about me.” 

 High schoolers worldwide use social media, but it does not mix well with school. Once students returned to in-person school in 2021 after being remote for an entire year, some students began creating accounts on Instagram making fun of students. The person running the account would follow their fellow schoolmates and then students would send pictures of the person they are talking about and a rumor about them. These would be anonymous confessions. 

For those students to whom this has happened, it is important for them to share their experience with trusted teachers, staff and friends because in a way it brings them all together and helps them not feel alone. 

“I lost a lot of friends due to social media because of petty rumors,’’ said junior Zion Elzy. “A lot of the time people will not tell you how they feel, so they will hide behind their screens instead of making up or talking things out.” 

Whenever students find themselves in an uncomfortable position because of social media, do not be afraid to talk to school counselors or social workers. They are always willing to help. 

Adriane Van Zwoll (Ms. Z), Clinical Manager for Behavioral Health at Proviso East’s Health Center, gives her outlook on how social media and Proviso East students sometimes do not mix: “There’s a false sense of reality and a big problem when people go back and forth on social media.” Social workers can talk with students about that “false sense of reality” and give students a bubble of hope by listening and sharing techniques for better managing their social media lives.  

When using social media for so long in life, we start to depend on it, but it could start taking a toll on your mental health. So don’t be afraid to take a break from social media. There are people in the building who can help. As Van Zwoll said, “If you’re shy and don’t like to talk to people, maybe ask a friend to go with you to a supportive person in the building.”  There are also some great tips, strategies and positive affirmations online, but you need to be careful about what sites you are seeking out as they can also have the reverse effect. 

Always remember there are people in the building who will be there for us when we have no one else. And if one of your friends is having troubles, don’t be afraid to encourage them to see a counselor, teacher, or other trusted adult in school. 

From the Editors: 

Proviso East offers support in the building. Please reach out to your assigned social worker listed below if you are in need of help. 

Grade 9: Derian Aguirre – Room 105 

Grade 10: Carol Murchison – Room 125 

Grade 11: Amy Santino – Room 101 

Grade 12: Hannah McCarthy – Room 138 

Diverse Learners: Mandy Ross 

If you are a student and need immediate social-emotional support, go to and click on your school icon to text anonymously with a mental health professional. You can also text 1-844-670-5838. 

If you or a loved one are having a life-threatening mental health emergency, please call 911 or visit your nearest emergency room. 

If you or a loved one are having thoughts of suicide, call the Suicide and Crisis Hotline at 988.