Why I’m Joining #DeleteFacebook

I remember the day it felt like my world began to crumble. It was such a beautiful day. The sun was shining, the air was warm, all around me people were laughing and enjoying the summer. My son and I were in Tivoli Gardens. Every so often I looked at the time, watching my watch tick tick tick its way towards 1.30 p.m.

tivoli

17 August 2016.

At that hour, my father would walk into an office in a hospital on the other side of the country and find out if he had cancer. It was my son’s first day of school, his new school. He didn’t know it then, but now he knows why I screamed so loudly on the roller coaster that day.

I cried in my car every morning before work and every day on the way home. One evening I looked at my Facebook feed and almost screamed, ‘Who f***ing cares!’ It all seemed so utterly pointless. Cat vidoes, updates from people I once worked with and had never had any contact with since. Who bloody cared what food they ate last night, what movie they saw or how incredibly awesome they found their partner? I deleted the app.

During my last relationship, I was an active Facebook user. It bothered me that he wasn’t. It bothered me that I could not brag about us, tag him in my updates, and show the world that our relationship was “real”. It bothered me that his exes posted photos of him or made lewd comments on his wall when they were drunk. I thought our inability to be a “Facebook couple” like everyone else meant there was something wrong with our relationship. When co-workers friended almost everyone in the office but me I thought there was something wrong with me.

Once I stopped using Facebook I thought about all the time I had spent posting pointless information. Time I could have spent writing. Time I could have spent with my son without a phone in my hand. Time I could have spent talking to my friends and really hearing about what was happening in their lives. Time I can never get back. Perhaps I would actually have finished Chocolates on My Pillow by now?

Tonight I asked Facebook to permanently delete my account.

delete facebook

Because while it was initially a great way to reconnect with friends I had lost touch with over the years, it quickly became something that stole my focus. Checking at work, checking at home, checking in the car. And for what? So someone can try and sell me something I don’t need, or make me vote for something I don’t believe in?

The friends I want to be in touch with, I am in touch with.

Bye bye Facebook. Cambridge Analytica was the last straw. I can send Pennywise memes to my friend another way.

 

19 thoughts on “Why I’m Joining #DeleteFacebook

  1. It feels great. I deleted the app from my phone a few weeks ago. I haven’t completely deleted the app yet, but I am seriously considering doing it. I uninstalled the app because afterwards, I always felt *worse* after using it. I don’t miss it at all, I don’t feel like I’m missing out on anything, I feel better about myself…so many positives! Were you a little nervous to write this or tell people about it? For some reason, I felt that way…kinda strange.

    Anyway, happy writing!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I read an article in the paper that was headlined ‘Who really wants to opt of a group everyone is in?’ and I thought, I do! I also felt bad after using it, so this happening was the push I needed. We’ve got so dependent on this but why do we even need it?
      I have a friend who can’t post anything without so many filters she doesn’t even look like herself anymore.
      I think telling my friends will feel a little strange. Now we’ll see who makes the effort to stay in touch…

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I once wrote a post titles “My on again off again love affair with Facebook”. I get what you are saying. But the problem can never be the app, but how we use it. I have cut my FB usage back a lot so I am finally comfortable with it. I disabled notifications on the app and check it when I want to and not when it tells me too. It’s like anything else. You have to be in control of it because it is designed to do everything it can to draw you in. That’s it’s job. I know people that are on it all day long. It’s a powerful thing to sneak out into the world anytime you want without ever leaving the house. People spend too much time on Facebook and it takes time away from things they could be doing. But it is where everyone is. That makes it a powerful you can use wisely. If I want to get a hold of family members quickly that is the easiest and fastest way to do it. If I want an audience for my book (when I publish) Facebook will be able to share it to the better than most other apps. When I want to see what’s going on the world and what people are saying about it Facebook is a good place to go. The only trick is not to have FB tied to you like an IV line. Put some time away for it. Give it 20 or 30 minutes in the morning to say hello and catch with your groups or sites you like and turn it off. Check it again later for responses and other things and then put it away. Facebook will take over your world if you let it. Just don’t let it. It’s just a tool. Nothing else. Gotta go. I need to go binge watch Netflix.

    P.S. – Great post, as always. I feel you on this one.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I agree that the problem is how we use it, but do we need to use it? It bothers me when I see young (yes, I know that makes me sound old) people who can’t function without social media, whose self-esteem is tied to how many likes they get. For me, there’s really nothing on there I care about anymore, so it was time to say goodbye.
      Torn between binge watching and editing now. Think I’ll have to go with editing. And maybe an episode or two later 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Lol. I get. But these kids grew up with it. It’s how they do “social”. We did it differently. But who knows? In a couple of decades things could be different and social media gets a new makeover. I can’t get mad if kids are addicted to it. That was our fault. Do we need to use it? Hey, sometimes you gotta go where the people are. Today that’s where they are. Good luck editing! -Robert

        Liked by 1 person

  3. Good riddance! I’ve always hated Facebook and the only reason I haven’t deleted it myself is because I need to use it for work. You’ve probably added another 10 years to your life getting rid of it, haha

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Great post!
    I deactivated my Facebook because I knew the feed was toxic as I feel most of the posts are inauthentic. However, I do have compassion for everyone I “friended” because I feel they don’t quite understand the amount of toxicity they contribute towards the feed; many do it to seek validation outside of themselves without realizing it. I just keep messenger as a way to keep in touch because I don’t allow what they post to represent who they really nor do I allow it to create an illusion of myself. I try to find a nice balance with everything and so I keep the messenger portion to communicate but don’t participate or look at the feed.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Inauthenticity was one of my main problems with it. Half the “my partner is so awesome” posts are see are from people whose partners are cheating on them. The people who preach self-love and being true to yourself are the ones who can’t post a photo of themselves without sending it through a million filters.
      Losing Messenger is a little annoying but I’ll find ways around it.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. I do really relate to this and want to delete my facebook- the only reason why I haven’t is I use my sign in for loads of other things and I need the messenger app to keep in contact with lots of friends- but fortunately I’ve gotten to the point where I no longer check fb or ever use it, so that’s good.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I was one of the earliest users of FB when it wasn’t still a thing (my account was made in 2006). At the time, I was always busy so I seldom posted on there. In 2010, I decided to stop posting on FB completely though I haven’t deleted it. In face, that account still exists today. I mainly use it as a convenient way to log in to services that permit logging in through FB. Then now, I also created a FB page for my blog through my old FB account.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It’s a convenient short cut for many things, I agree. For me it’s been this nagging thing at the back of my mind, like a relationship you want out of but can’t quite let go. I’ll just have to live with the frustration of having to remember which email address I signed up to everything with 🙂

      Like

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