In 2008 I fell in love with Facebook.
Facebook gave me a lazy way of keeping in contact with people I have and have had in my life. I was able to keep in touch with Uni friends who had left for postdocs overseas, past loves, family, high school friends. In a way, facebook gave me a small glimpse into the people and life that I had left behind…perhaps the very life I would be living if I had made different choices along the way. I remember I used to be so excited to log onto facebook and see what was happening….who had updated their status, left a comment or liked a photo.
I began accumulating friends… old friends….new friends amongst the people I was meeting. I now realise that I got caught up in the whole ‘friends’ thing. I was enjoying sharing my status updates, and photos. I loved reading about my friends lives, reading their status updates and seeing their beautiful photos. Facebook enabled me to see pictures of my friend’s newborn babies and share in their joy. I was able to get to know family members living overseas that I probably would not have made contact with through more traditional means. I even got the chance to live vicariously through some of my friends that had chosen different paths in life to myself.
Facebook was a place I could retreat to, when the kids were napping, or I had a few minutes to myself...….Facebook made my job as a SAHM seem not quite as lonely and isolating. However, as time went on things seemed to change,….
Facebook seemed to change. There were less personal updates and more updates from companies that I had ‘liked’ somewhere along the way. I know it was my fault for over enthusiastically liking pages that I thought I actually liked at the time. But I didn’t expect several updates per company, per day…. . There were so many updates, infact, that I was starting to lose the personal updates from my friends and family amongst all the sales pitches, competitions, gaming requests, product launches and other noise.
Many of my close friends and family have stopped status updates all together, or update very rarely. For me Facebook has lost its ability to help form and keep close personal connections.
Maybe it’s not just facebook that has changed. Perhaps I have changed as well, because even the feel of the personal updates seems to be different. Facebook seems to have transformed into a place where status updates are almost a competitive sport. Some updates are written with the intent of making others feel inferior, inadequate or excluded. Facebook has made it easy for people with attention seeking and passive aggressive tendencies to fish for sympathy.
It started to get a little old (or downright depressing) to log onto Facebook on a Saturday night, and see a group of my ‘friends’ checking in from some wonderful social engagement complete with drunken close-up photos…
As time goes on, friendships in real life sometimes just run their course, or just peter out. These people would normally just disappear from my friendship group. But now, these ‘friends’ still lurk on Facebook. Old ‘friends’ and sadly ‘family’ with an axe to grind have poped up and commented on random Facebook posts.
For me, Facebook has almost become a tool for cowards to hide behind. Cowards who cannot speak to me personally, but feel free to write their comments on Facebook for my other friends to see. This has happened to me many times now, and I’m afraid that I have lost my trust in Facebook. I used to feel excited to see the little red icons advising me that I had a comment or a message…now when I open Facebook I have a feeling of dread…..I wonder who it will be this time….
…I think I have fallen out of love with Facebook…the infatuation has gone.
I’m curious to know what other people have experienced on Facebook? I wonder if it is just me that has become disenchanted? Have I been the one that has changed….and facebook is the same happy place it always was…. Or do you think Facebook and they way Facebook is used has changed over time?
Linking up with Jess at Diary of a SAHM for #TeamIBOT. Pop over and visit to read some great Tuesday posts!