Do you remember when you joined Facebook? I do. It was in the summer of 2005, and I was at the University computer lab with my friend Raven. She told me I should get on it, and so I did. I barely used it for about 4 years or so. I didn’t get a smartphone until 2011, and I just didn’t care about it at the time. I joined Myspace shortly after Facebook, and I liked it better because I could add all my friends on there, not just people in college (remember when Facebook was like that? It was dumb). I also liked how Myspace let you personalize your profile with tacky backgrounds, annoying music, and those little glittery graphics (pre-memes and gifs). I really liked those.
Once Facebook started letting everyone on, I deleted Myspace and went over to Facebook (I think this was around the time Harry was 1 year old). It started as a once daily check-in, still I didn’t have a smartphone, I didn’t know how to do groups or really anything. But over the next 7-8 years, my relationship with Facebook book went from fun and helpful to fucking toxic.
I think everyone knows about the Facebook effect of people only showing their best sides and also comparing themselves to everyone and feeling inferior when you see an acquaintance from high school doing something you haven’t done –also the flip of that: seeing people who were dicks to you in high school getting fat or working a dead end job. No matter how hard I tried to shake the inferiority and superiority feelings off and still stay on Facebook, it didn’t work. I’d still look at pictures of people and compare.
During my pregnancy with Beau, I found a great group that started as a Real Housewives discussion group and ended up being a really nice place to talk about everything under the sun. That group imploded after the token guy actually passed away (so so sad, he was only 26). He kept a group of 60 women (housewives fans, at that) getting along and friendly. When he died, people starting going after each other, and the group split in half, and it was not fun anymore.
That was almost 2 years ago. I wavered after that from scrolling endlessly through feeds, then posting things I thought were funny, then getting pissy about people’s political crap, and realizing I don’t actually like some people very much. Actually I think I don’t like a lot of people. JW says it because I have high expectations of people (true). I’ve always been someone who kept to myself, and whenever my friends list started to creep up to the 200 mark, I’d mass delete people because I don’t like that many people knowing ‘stuff’ about me. Pretty ironic for someone who has a blog, but to me this blog serves a purpose. I love writing, I hate bragging, and this is a good medium to get out what I want to say. I can control the format. I use pseudonyms for myself and my family. Basically I have freedom here.
Sometime around October I deactivated Facebook and haven’t looked back. I keep the messenger part because it’s the only way JW can communicate from work, and I can also message my big kids on their tablets (they only have messenger, too –their actual accounts are all deactivated).
Eliminating Facebook from my life has been really freeing. I also quit housewives last year, but that’s for another post. That’s all for now.
UPDATE April 2018: I did look back! I started using it again after moving and not wanting to lose touch with people. I also started watching housewives again last month. So don’t take anything I say too seriously.