The cruelty of the pet password
And other ways of digitally grieving.
Embedded is your essential guide to what’s good on the internet, written by Kate Lindsay and edited by Nick Catucci.
For Birdie. —Kate
Reminder: I’m now writing Embedded full-time. Take advantage of our sale to support my work.
According to a 2022 study, one in three people have used their pet’s name as a password. The study says this is bad because your pets’ names are easily identifiable through social media. I say it’s bad because one day, your pet will pass away.
On Monday, my boyfriend and I found out our cat Birdie had cancer. It had already spread from her lungs to her feet. We decided it was best, for her, to say goodbye.
We only had Birdie for two years. She was a beautiful pastel calico with white paws and bright blue eyes. She loved to sit in the threshold of the living room and stare at you. She loved using her mouth to throw around her favorite toy toucan. She loved to squawk when she felt it was time for food (she always felt it was time for food). She loved to sleep in the crook of my legs every night in bed. She was mean to everyone else who ever met her, but not to me.
Almost every Embedded post was written with her on or next to me. As I write this now, our apartment is the quietest, emptiest it’s ever been. It makes me so mad I want to throw things.
What’s left of Birdie is a clay pawprint the vet kindly made for us, and countless digital memories.