Saturday, June 1, 2013

taking a break

Just last night in the middle of a heated game of Monopoly, my sister Justy held up her phone. She was showing me a Facebook post that we both knew was ridiculous. This person is just a hot mess -making horrible, life-altering decisions that affect other people -and just loves to go online posting like he/she is this outstanding person/parent/family member. Basically just wanting even more attention.
It is annoying. And it made me angry.

Seriously, am I getting myself pissed off by looking at Facebook?
In a word: Yes.
I am honestly getting pissed off by browsing my newsfeed.

It's apparently time for a break.

So as of today, I am taking a week off.
I am something of an addict when it comes to Facebook. I am not on it all day long, but whenever I am sitting in the recliner feeding Graham without much else to do, I fire up the Ipad and browse away. I know way more than I ever cared to know about the same 15 people that are constantly posting. And Facebook isn't improving the quality of my life if I am getting worked up by immature people I would never want to deal with in person.

In fact, I think there are a lot of ways that Facebook is not helping people.
Facebook has become the new vehicle for keepin' up with the Joneses.
 
While it isn't true for everybody, most of us have probably felt that way at one time or another while assessing the lives of our online friends.
I can't be the only one, right?
 
You are going through a break-up.
Thank God I have never broken up with a boyfriend in the Facebook era.
Come on! Seriously, it has to be so hard!
Even if you were the dumper and not the dumpee, you still have this sick desire to want to know what the other person is up to. Before Facebook you would have had to have gotten info from mutual friends or run into each other somewhere. Time and distance were your friends. Not hearing from him or seeing him around would help you get over it all much more quickly.
Now?
You can {quite easily} become a super stalker.
You can check out his new girlfriend, see photos of him out having way more fun than you are, look at a log of all the places he was tagged... It's non-stop.
And it's in real-time!
For example, you happen to be at home alone on a Saturday night watching The Notebook and log onto Facebook. Bam! there he is. You see him tagged in a photo out at the bar doing a shot with a hot chick on his lap.  Instant dagger to the self-esteem!
Even if you take the healthier route and delete him, you can quite easily ask your friends and family members for info in a weak moment, because odds are they didn't delete him.
Breaking up is hard to do.
But it probably feels damn near impossible with Facebook.
 
Then there are the friends who have the opposite life as you.
Most days I am happy and content. I have a great husband and three happy, healthy children. But let me tell you, there are times when I look at Facebook and see my single friends out there living it up, and I momentarily wish I could get a refund on my family life - just for a day.
I see their vacation photos, complete with bikini clad bodies sipping a drink on a warm beach. Then I look down at my nursing tank and lounge pants from the Gap and take in the sights and sounds of my children momentarily fighting over a book. What sane person doesn't occasionally wish they were the one laying on the beach with no cares in the world?
That being said,
some people feel the opposite way.
They see their married friends celebrating anniversaries and having children and wish that was their lives. Those same skinny, single people are some times wishing for a house filled with kids, even if there are nasty diapers that come along with them. Or what about couples suffering through infertility that would give anything to have a baby of their own? How sucky it must be to log onto Facebook and be bombarded with everyone's new baby photos.
 
And more recently for me, there is mommy guilt.
You just got done putting your kid in time-out (again) and are picking up your kids' toys for the ten thousandth time that day. A while later you log onto Facebook to see all these posts highlighting how amazing your friends are as parents.
Kids that love naps.
Arts and craft projects.
Picture after picture of healthy lunches featuring every food group...
Some days I feel it's a win if they actually eat some chicken nuggets and don't spend a solid ten minutes trying to bite each other. 
 
 
It's hard to be happy with your own life when constantly comparing it to others'. It's part of life -  other people have things you want.
But with Facebook, you honestly log on every time to be reminded of that:
This person has lost 20 pounds.
That girl got a new car.
Mr. Muscles ran his 10th marathon.
So-and-so's rich husband took her on a European vacation.
That guy landed a dream job.
And you are happy for these people.
Okay, scratch that.
In actuality, I am happy for my close friends and family. When something happens in their lives, I want to celebrate with them.
The rest - I some times have a pang of jealousy {Who doesn't want to be able to afford a European vacation?} and usually not much else.
 
Don't get me wrong - I do love Facebook.
I like seeing happy pictures of my friends' cute kids, getting a laugh from a funny status, and reading links to interesting articles I might not have ever seen otherwise.
 
But for the next week, I am not going to miss the comparisons I some times make between myself and other people.  My life is my own, and I am happy with it, even if Facebook occasionally makes me feel like I am missing out.
 



1 comment:

  1. Hi I'm Heather! Please email me when you get a chance, I have a question about your blog! LifesABanquet1(at)gmail.com

    ReplyDelete

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