I don’t think you should have unfriended me on Facebook.
I think you should have given it some time—and here are a few reasons why:
1. Facebook is for dialogue.
Literally, isn’t that about all that Facebook is good for? I mean, in this day and age where we have Instagram as a much better photo-sharing option and Twitter for briefer, more concise interactions, isn’t open and respectful dialogue about the only reason to be on this particular social media website?
If you don’t want to exchange and create dialogue with people that are slightly different than you—keeping in mind that they’ve shown repeatedly that they’re not rude or nasty when they discuss these differing viewpoints—then here’s a suggestion: go join a club where everyone is there for the exact same purpose (like their love of Celine Dion) and the exact same opinion on something (she’s thee best sing-air in the world), and also…good luck with that.
I choose diversity, but, hey, that’s just me.
2. I didn’t mean it that way.
Ever heard the saying that people generally take things personally when you really weren’t involved in their thinking or decision making at all? In other words, I didn’t have you in mind in the slightest when I wrote that as my status update, so if you thought that song was about you…maybe it’s you that has some soul-searching to do, rather than simply “unfriending” others.
On the other hand, this is more of what I mean by this particular suggestion: the best way to misunderstand someone is to text, email or message them in a way that has no physical interaction whatsoever—like facial expressions, voice inflections, etc—like on Facebook.
If you’re going to unfriend someone before you’ve even figured out what actually was exchanged between the two of you, then maybe you should stay away from this type of media and messaging in general. Just a thought.
3. You can turn off my notifications.
I mean, I’ve turned off yours. Okay, so I’ve done this with very, very few people.
Still, if you’re Facebook “friends” with people because of work or something that’s not entirely a true friendship setting, then unfriending someone can burn bridges.
Personally, I don’t believe in burning bridges because it’s very hard to cross a bridge that’s been set on fire and then blown up too—which is why I just went to your profile and clicked the selection to turn your notifications off. That way I didn’t have to constantly read about your tragic poops or latest bout with foot fungus.
4. You’re a gossip.
Along these same lines, unfriending me just created unnecessary gossip. It would have been quieter and more discreet to follow suggestion #3. Yet you didn’t want to be discreet, did you? You wanted to cause a scene and make me look bad and hurt my feelings. Well, you didn’t—but you did start the gossip monster rolling, so congrats on that I guess.
5. I pissed you off—once.
Welcome to life. People piss each other off all the time. If someone’s a jerk or writes horribly offensive and argumentative things repeatedly, well, that’s a different story. On the other hand, we had a difficult exchange, let me count them—once—and you unfriend me? A little extreme I think. It makes me wonder what you’re like in “real” life when people get your goat.
6. Why are we friends in the first place?
Did we grow up together? Is your mom my mom’s best friend? Are you my cousin?
Because here’s the thing: no one’s perfect, so newsflash there, but, more importantly, can’t you consider why we’re connected on here in the first place before you possibly irreproachably damage our relationship? If you wait until tomorrow, then I might just post something that made you shoot coffee out your nose because you were laughing so hard, and you’ll remember why we were “friends” after all.
7. I blog too much.
Yeah, I have no counter for this one. Sometimes you blog too much too. So see suggestion #3 once again.
8. I didn’t want to hurt your feelings.
I think you’re a little strange too. I think you might have some mental health issues, but not ones that are scary enough to make me afraid of you and, here’s the bigger issue, I didn’t want to hurt your feelings, so I kept you on as my pal.
If you think I’m a little nuts, then you’re absolutely right. (Have you read any of my constant—and constantly over-sharing—blogs?) But, come on, have a little bit of heart. Or don’t.
9. I believe in second chances.
And thirds. And fourths. As long as you didn’t abuse me or our relationship, I’ll likely give you another shot at us, because that’s what people do—we f*ck up and then we try again.
10. You’re immature.
Okay, so in my book at least, social media sites like Facebook are all a little immature. We’re sharing things like our favorite songs of the moment, a stupid exchange in the grocery store line and what our kids said that made us giggle. And it’s okay that this set-up is a little bit immature, but you unfriending me over a petty, meaningless interaction that only truly happened in your head? Yeah, that’s an immaturity that even I can’t relate to (and I blog about dutch ovens and toilet skid marks, so that’s saying something).
Here you go.
Ten reasons that I think you should have considered keeping me on as a “friend” because even though I said that I believe in second and third, and sometimes fourth, chances, I probably won’t accept your friend request if you change your mind.
That ship has sailed, my “friend.”
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Editor: Bryonie Wise