Sunday, May 12, 2013

It's just too hard to leave Facebook...

In my last post, I asked the question, "does Facebook make people anti-social?"  Perhaps it does with some people.  I talked about a certain family member who was hurt by what her daughter said to her.  My wife told her that it may be best to take a break from Facebook for a while.  She kind of agreed, and was considering leaving.  However, she did not.

Facebook's gravitational pull is too great for many.  A life without Facebook is terrifying to many in our modern world.  People are expected to either be on Facebook or be viewed as social pariahs.  Furthermore, there is often a backlash from family and friends who are on Facebook when one leaves.  "Why did you leave us?" they cry.  In fact, when a Facebook user goes to deactivate their profile, shown is a few friends with text saying that each one will miss you. 

Instead of leaving Facebook, the individual has set herself up for more heartache.  Similar situations have erupted on Facebook over the course of the last few years.  Some people use Facebook as a medium to control others.  Others use Facebook as a medium to make others feel awful about the world and their lives.  For my sister-in-law, she uses Facebook as a way to tell her family (particularly her mother) how they raised her wrong all of her life and to brag about her adult life.  Happy mother's day.

My wife's mother has battled with the idea of leaving Facebook for a while now.  In fact, she once stated that she was not addicted to Facebook.  I think that most people are.  In fact, I believe if someone 'battles leaving Facebook but does not' then they are addicted.  There is no way around it.  To the addicted, contrary information, such as this website, is ignored.  Many addicts have no want to hear that they are addicted, nor do they want to change.  In fact, even with the heartache that Facebook causes these people, a fear of the world outside of Facebook makes them too afraid to leave.

My wife's father, however, did leave Facebook.  He realized that Facebook was not conductive to a real adult life in a real adult world.  In fact, he was sick of the behavior that many hardcore users exhibit on the site.  The strutting around like an internet rooster.  The behaving like a donkey in the barnyard.  The incredulous lack of judgement that many Facebook users show.  The internet brings out the worst in people.  From message boards to internet chat rooms, people can be downright vile on the internet.  Facebook makes it worse, because, many of these people are doing it to their families and best friends.  Those who society says we should love the most. 

In the last few years I have seen both my family and my wife's family fall apart.  From outright cheating on spouses to using Facebook as a medium for the disowning of siblings, Facebook has reeked serious havoc.  Before leaving I constantly read horrible things being said about family members right on the site.  Family fights erupted for the world to see.  And yet people ask me why I am not on Facebook.  I believe that we become that which we behold.  I did not want to turn into such a person.  I did not want to be a part of the negativity.  I had found that Facebook was a very negative website across the board.  Sadly, many people do not see it.  Instead, they think Facebook is just a way to keep in touch.  Yet, there is an element that brings out the worst in humanity there.  Perhaps it's the war to get likes.  People will destroy each other for a few likes.  Facebook likes are like cocaine to some. 

My wife's mother eventually sent an e-mail to my sister-in-law and within seconds replied and invited my wife's mother to yet another birthday party.  They went.  Perhaps out of fear of the backlash that would be caused on the site if they said no.  Perhaps they truly wanted to go, even though the daughter humiliated her and made her feel like a genuine buffoon and certified lummox.  Everything should be a-ok for the next few weeks.  Of course, the Facebook pawn will show herself again and rape and pillage for the world to see.  That's how it goes down in Facebook town. 


  1. "Perhaps it's the war to get likes. People will destroy each other for a few likes. Facebook likes are like cocaine to some."

    That's exactly the point, I think. Facebook is not some website to keep in touch with family and friends, it is a "display window". Everybody cries and shouts for attention: some people try to be the wittiest, others prefer complaining all over their wall. Fishing for likes seems to be the most popular sport in the 21st century.

    Great post!

  2. Thank you for your post. 5 days ago I marked my account for permanent deletion. Facebook tries their best to get you to stay, even giving me 2 weeks to change my mind. I'm so conflicted about Facebook. I have family overseas and when my sister was recently in the hospital it was a great tool to communicate with her and get instant updates on her condition. However, I agree that most people are not using Facebook for what it was meant for. It seems like a platform for people to show off how fantastic their lives are. It's one-sided and to be completely honest I have tortured myself for hours many nights 'stalking' profiles of people I used to go to school with, old boyfriends, etc. and compared my life to theirs. One of the reasons I ended up looking at all these different profiles is that some of my family members are 'friends' with certain people from my past therefore always show up in the friend suggestions. People I don't care about and don't want to know about. So why keep looking on their profiles and comparing myself? I suppose I'm a gluten for punishment. I don't have enough self control to not go on their profiles. Ironically for something meant to bring people together, I have never felt more isolated and alone. These just aren't normal interactions. I'm still really torn, but my family overseas is just a phone call or email away. I know the internet has good and bad just like everything else, but I sure do miss the days before it existed. When I grew up if I wanted to talk to my friends I would phone them or just to go their house. We were always out and about, outdoors, etc. Seems nowadays everyone is attached to their smart phones and other high-tech devices. Sorry for my rant!

    1. I can relate to what you say! I closed my account some weeks ago and I'm still obsessing about my ex girlfriend, wondering if she's going to many "events" or whether she's met someone new - and, of course, better than me.

      Let's try and start a new life facebookless!

  3. *glutton Sorry for the typo.

  4. "Facebook likes are like cocaine to some." You have describe facebook likes in a beautiful way. Thanks for sharing this informative post.

  5. In some instances, Facebook fans can also be bought.

  6. When I first opened a face book account it was not my Idea I was invited by a relative who was just using me for to play FB games, He said I needed a few friends so he suggested a few he knew so I blindly accepted them they all were nice at first but soon ignored me most the time, I really didn't know what to expect to do with my FB account social net working was all completely
    new to me I'm now 62 not the same age group as they were anyway! So as I found out slowly but surly It was hard to keep up with every ones posts and daily drama I felt I didn't even know these friends that well and the ones I did know seemed not as friendly or the same anymore! FB seems to change people into popularity contestants and they aren't the same they seem to care about how many likes they get then ignore your posts, started feeling alone or a outsider most the time, To me it seems crazy to be on a site to only make ourselves look good to others by posting so many things to get likes and all the news stories also start arguments there is a lot of stress on FB!!!

  7. I have been tempted to log on to FB again, my 14 days aren't up yet till its gone for good! I pray for god to help me because I know If I get back on it will be the same stress as before the same desires to comment on news posts the same feeling of competing with others comments and the same strolling through the pages to find what? More stuff that stresses me again? Why do I need FB? The only things I enjoyed about FB was my son but he keeps in contact with us other ways I might miss some of his posts but there are too many other negative things on FB I cant stand!! Besides he doesn't post constantly like the other FB friends that I didn't have time to keep up with all their posts that never changes the world!! How important is all of these posts, comments, or likes? Does it really make the world better? With every positive thing on FB story or posts there are more negative stories and insulting posts too! And what am I trying to get out of FB? Before I ever had it I was perfectly happy! So I don't think I need a addiction to be happy every day! I'd rather be free!!!

    1. Why not just take it easy on yourself and if you do log back in, just take a look around, see what you have NOT been missing and log back out. Sort of like being on a diet (which never really works) - you just get back on the diet…but in most cases, diets fail. I think rather than just go cold turkey by deleting Facebook I plan to start limiting the time I spend on there. I started today after watching a classic Facebook narcissist for the umpteenth time brag about herself - I decided enough was enough. I used to log in several times a day and today I logged in twice. It's a start. I've also stopped posting things, and stopped replying to other's posts. I did send someone a birthday greeting today which is one reason I logged in.

      Soon I will take my profile photo down and replace it with something else, or nothing.

      I have friends who log in once a week, or once a month or twice a year, and I think it is possible to do just that. For instance when one goes on a diet it usually doesn't work to say "I'll never eat ice cream or chocolate cake again". When you completely deny yourself something, it makes you want it more. But to say to yourself: "chocolate cake feels good for a few minutes but when it makes my clothes too tight, that's when I know I'm eating too much of it. And putting on weight and feeling bad about it is NOT something I want to happen."

      Rather than put on weight, getting depressed and have to buy a whole new wardrobe, how about just saying NO to chocolate cake every day and only saying yes to it every now and then. We know that when we do things in moderation, we are healthier and happier.

      I found that works for me when I'm trying to kick a certain habit. I gave up diet soda and replaced it with seltzer water. Now after being away from it, I really cannot stand the taste of diet soda but every now and then - every 6 months or so - I'll have a diet Coke.

      I have a feeling the same thing will happen with Facebook. ;-)

      If not, I'll go cold turkey. But for now, I'm just taking a week off.