Stop gallery pictures being used as thumbnail/preview images on social media

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    I structure my blog posts so that there is a large “cover” image at the start, or near the start, of the posts. When I share links to these posts on social media, this “cover” image is usually displayed as a thumbnail or preview image (e.g. on Twitter Summary Cards, on Google+).

    However, when my posts also contain gallery images, and I try to share the link on social media, it is ALWAYS the first of the gallery images which comes up as the thumbnail/preview, instead of the “cover” image.

    Is there a way to stop this happening? Is there a way to make sure the very first picture in my posts is the image that shows on links on social media, and that gallery images never are?

    And is there a way to do this without having to set the “cover” image as a “featured image”? (The reason I ask is that I want to avoid having pictures showing on the posts page of my website, which they inevitably do when featured images are set).

    The blog I need help with is rebeccaalasdair.com.

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