Saturday, September 11, 2010

Life Without Facebook

It's been some time since I got rid of my Facebook account. Mostly I am glad to be rid of it, but with some friendships it was one of my only life-lines and connections. I am pretty sure those friendships were already dying and were on life support through keeping up with various statuses and commenting on various photos. It gave the illusion we were still connected, however tenuously.

Once your friend marries, you know you are entering a new phase of friendship and it will be harder to connect. When she and her husband have their firstborn child, well, you are lucky if you even talk regularly, because her life is so wrapped up in her baby's, she has a difficult time going out, visits are hard to schedule, and the young mother may feel pressured that you even suggest getting together. You have less in common all the time, because how could you know what it is like to be both a mother and a wife and what do you understand about feeding schedules and solid food introductions? In these cases, fading out of the picture is the kind thing to do.

I used to follow all my friends' status updates. Some of my friends I didn't even know very well at all, but the ones that posted a lot of status updates I got know some version of them. I always commented on the first photos of the new babies, and I would comment on wedding and engagement photos too.

Facebook increased my dissatisfaction with my own life and increased my feelings of envy with whoever's cute new baby, new home, or redone living room I happened to be viewing. Facebook filled my time with little of actual value, but I had to log in several times a day because I had to keep up with the feed. I updated my status too often and always tried to make it sound interesting, even if my life was actually rather boring at the time.

At a time when I needed to decrease my stimulation and center my self, getting rid of Facebook was the obvious decision. Then too, nurses have to consider what image they are portraying to a potential employer, and it is less complicated without Facebook.

I miss knowing what some of my former classmates are up to, and connecting with my new classmates, but now I have the gift of more free time, the side benefit of having less feelings of envy, and the ability to just live my life and not constantly think up status updates and image boosters. I have more time to blog, more time to exercise, more time to do homework, and more time to read. I have lost some social utility, but I have gained a healthier lifestyle and a freer soul.


Betty Anne said...

Wow - this is an awesome post -- it really makes me think.

Suzanne said...

Thanks Betty Anne!