I’ll be honest. I wasn’t a fast fan of Facebook when it first made its options open for non-collegiate grown folk like me. I’d heard of the damage done to relationships where affairs and the likes were allowed to live, and I’d experienced firsthand a person I knew become consumed with it spending far too much time attending to “the book”.
Well, in 2010, I decided to bite the bullet and join Facebook in an effort to stay connected to those I would know longer see on a regular basis due to my divorce, to connect with new and encouraging associates and to reconnect with those I needed for my awesome at times, and not so much at others, new journey. Since that time, I’ve become a fan of what I once seriously/jokingly referred to as “the devil”, recognizing the powerful potential Facebook offers to foster healthy relationships, stay connected, get important messages out, build business, provide laughter, promote encouragement and the likes. I’ve also noticed some things that I’m sure Facebook wasn’t made for. I’m not talking about the typical ease with which illicit associations and drama that puts “Empire” to shame can occur. I’m not talking about the bitter and very vocal hurting woman or man who uses the “Book” to continually put her/his child’s other parent on blast. I’m not hinting at the scantily clad photos or rants that should literally and figuratively disappear (but won’t because once it’s out there it’s out there). I’m not speaking to the cyber-bullying which should cease immediately. I’m not even referring to the poor grammar which pains me to my core each time I scroll by it. I’m speaking to the self-inflicted hurt which causes humans to question themselves or question others based on what someone posts. And while this effect is not at all caused by Facebook, it is certainly conducive to breeding unwarranted anger, misplaced hurt, self-doubt, or distrust if there are internal issues which allow it to do so.
Again, there is much to say about social media and the damage it can do in the hands of hurting humans who use it irresponsibly. However, there is much good which has come about as well. Now, I’ve not spoken to Mr. Zuckerberg (yet), but I can imagine, after having seen the Social Network movie with my friend-in-my-head Justin Timberlake in it, that Mark didn’t create Facebook for any of the following:
- Facebook is not made to make us feel left out, excluded, forgotten, ignored or unwanted when we see pictures and posts which may not include us. (It’s just not, and that’s as plain as I can put it. There are a myriad of reasons for things, none of which should ever have us feel bad about ourselves or feel bad about those who truly care whether we were invited or not. Read my blog to find out why: https://angelamooreblog.wordpress.com/2013/02/27/i-dont-want-to-come-to-your-stinkin-party-anyway/)
- Facebook is not made to have us scroll through posts and feel somebody else’s life is better than ours. (Every single body goes through something. We can’t let the ability to smile, laugh, mix or mingle (even through pain) fool us into thinking there’s something wrong with us because of what we perceive to be right with others.)
- Facebook is not made to have us scroll through pictures and posts and feel somebody thinks their life is better than ours. (They may feel that way. If so. Pray. On the other hand, they may simply just be glad to be alive and want to share it with their world.)
- Facebook is not made to make us compare and compete. (It was made to like, comment, share, post, friend, follow, defriend or unfollow. We can’t let a spirit of comparison ruin the beauty that lingers within Facebook or any form of social media.)
- Facebook is not made to make us. (It’s social media, which means it in no way, shape, form or fashion rules or reigns over the other amazing aspects of our lives. It should not be our only source of “go-to” communication. It should not take the place of good, old-fashioned chit-chat. It should not be where we post important things, hope others notice and get upset if they don’t. It should not define us based on likes, friends, followers or requests.)