Yes. Evil. I know it’s drastic but social media will get you caught up in some serious mess. I’m talking hurt feelings, lies, exaggerated success (or failures). Let me start off by saying that I love what social media can do. I truly believe that meaningful friendships, connections, and relationships can be made via social media. I love connecting with people I haven’t seen in years. I love that I can begin and continue relationships no matter the distance. I also know the down side.
Earlier this year I had my first case of being unfriended. I should say being unfriended and CARING. I know this sounds petty but let me explain.
I am loyal. I am loyal to a fault. If you’re my friend and you tell me that Ms. XYZ doesn’t like you for some odd reason then I’ll fight for you. I’ll listen to what you say. I’ll tell you if you’re wrong. You’re my friend. You’re the one I stand up for. When people talk bad about you, I defend you. When people are weary about your intentions, I clear things up. You are my friend and I am loyal. But what if you aren’t really my friend? What if you’re just someone I’ve spoken to on occasion but supported for years? What if you’re someone that has reached out to ME for help? What if I thought you were my friend but you really weren’t? I feel petty even writing about this. I’m 34 and should be over this kind of stuff. The truth is that this really hurt my feelings. I mean I was upset for days. I couldn’t understand this. Like I felt BETRAYED.
Here’s what happened.
Facebook is a fickle beast. I was older when Facebook became popular so I never used it for the college experience. I use Facebook to make connections new and old. I’ve never really cared much about the number of friends I have on there because I don’t speak to half of them. Actually, I probably only speak to about 30 people on my friends list. I see Facebook as a phonebook of sorts – way to communicate with people for whatever reason. I used to spend hours and hours on Facebook talking to people. Now, I’d rather spend that time on the phone or on Skype. It was to my surprise when I searched for a “friend” and realized I wasn’t seeing the posts that I used to see. But it didn’t start there. This actually started on Instagram. I found out that I was blocked on a certain IG page. I don’t remember how that discovery came about but it did. I just knew it had to be in error. It had to be. Why would anybody block ME? Why would this person block me?
This normally wouldn’t bother me but it did because I’ve defended this person to so many people. When I talk about defend I mean DEFEND. Like people would say that this person was stuck up and I’d say they were misunderstood. People would say this person was out of touch and I would say that their online presence was just being misread. I would say that they would do anything to help. I went to bat. I guess I did too good of a job because all those people that I defended this person to are still in the circle of friends – but not me. I got the boot. I’m not insinuating that this person needed me in any way. They didn’t – obviously. What I’m saying is that I always looked up to this person – even when other people didn’t. I have always supported this person – even when people wrote them off.
I seriously felt petty when I first wrote this. Why would anybody care? Why should I care? But the truth is – people do care. We take these social media relationships seriously. This is a new day and age. Online relationships can be just as fulfilling as in-person relationships. They can be just as serious and meaningful. Social media makes it so easy to feel included. It can also make you feel like you’re not good enough. You can lose sight of what is true.
I learned something from this experience. I learned to be loyal to me. I learned to remain true to what I believe in. I know this person is still amazing at what they do. I also know that I don’t need people in my life that don’t want to be there.
The WHY isn’t that important to me anymore. I know who I am and what I stand for. I’ll continue to remain loyal to me and those that I believe in. I believe in believing in people. I’ll just be better prepared for the feelings not being reciprocated.
*I know how to write. I know that I shouldn’t use “they” or “them” when I’m only referring to one person. I know I should start sentences with “And” or “But” or “Or”. I like to break rules sometimes. 😉