Breaking up with Facebook
An anti-love letter
Published: Monday, September 10, 2012
Updated: Monday, September 10, 2012 22:09
I am sorry I have to air our dirty laundry here, Facebook, but you did not protect my privacy so I will not protect yours either! Here is an account of our whirlwind courtship and tumultuous break-up.
I broke up with Facebook six months ago. Heartbroken, I reluctantly told Facebook, “It’s not me, it’s you!” In the interest of full disclosure, I must admit we hooked up again once. I knew it was a mistake the minute he gave me a generic welcome back message. He did not even seem to have missed me or genuinely wanted me back. He just wanted to use me for my information! (UGH! Typical man-, am I right ladies?)
Anyway, our courtship started innocently enough. Facebook and I met through mutual friends seven years ago almost to the day.
I was lonely. I had just moved to Moorhead for college and yearning to connect with my friends in exotic, distant cities like Saint Cloud and Minneapolis! Facebook swooped in, took me under his digital wing and promised to connect me with my friends.
Facebook was such a romantic in the beginning. He would always flirt with me via poking, digital invitations and even send me digital invitations (ok, so they were through other friends but he facilitated it)!
After dating so many narcissistic jerks, it was refreshing Facebook always wanted to know about me! He asked about my interests, my hobbies and wanted to see pictures of me.
I ecstatically told all my friends, “Like OMG, I totally, for real, Facebook is so sweet! He always wants to spend time with me and shower me with worthless information!” Plus, I felt so popular. All of a sudden I had 400 some friends!
After the sparkling fresh newness of our relationship faded, there was cognitive dissonance in maintaining my relationship with Facebook. Facebook’s favorite pastime with me was comparison with others. He had a penchant for evoking my insecurity.
He would show me pictures of ‘friends’ getting their medical degrees while I changed adult diapers for minimum wage. He would show me pictures of friends on Caribbean Cruises while I cruised Main Street. It was enough to make me want to kiss the hallowed Facebook screen and yell “I’m not worthy!” like Wayne and Garth tell Alice in Chains on Wayne’s World.
Moreover, Facebook was starting to waste a lot of my time with statuses, pictures, and information overload. I stopped caring about the frequencies and textures of other people’s bowel movements and the quantity of their belly button lint. People broadcasted their every capricious whim, thought, hope, fear, and dream. There was no air of mystique or intrigue about other people’s lives anymore! There was none about mine either, because people could easily access my information and pictures.
Facebook told me things that I should have heard from a real human being. On a serious note, Facebook is how I learned about a friend’s engagement and more sadly, about a friend’s death. That is pretty cold.
My counselor even suggested that I end this heart wrenching relationship. I did not feel strong enough. I kept going back to him. Terrified, I realized I was afraid to be without him.
On a grim, downcast day, I quivered in fear as my finger lingered over the mouse wondering if I should do the deed. It felt liberating to de-activate once and for all.
It was hard enough to say goodbye, but Facebook would not even give me my stuff back! Apparently he stores my information for data mining. Ok, maybe I am a bit bitter after all.
Bitterness of the past aside, life really is sweeter without Facebook. Since our breakup, I have made more of an effort to keep in touch with friends through phone, horse, and carriage. Good riddance, Facebook.