Thursday, October 11, 2012

Oh, Facebook...

Do you ever notice that there is the one friend or family member you can usually count on to dispel any important information to the rest of your family and friends?  In my family, these people were my mother, and my grandmother on my dad's side.  Between these 2 women, I very rarely needed to tell anyone in my family my own business... that was something they could tell everyone when they were visiting with others.

Now that Grandma has passed on and I'm an adult, I find that the burden of sharing news falls primarily on my own shoulders.  What a lot of work!  However, thanks to the glory of facebook, I can post a status update, and the majority of my family and friends will have immediate access to the news.  And that is exactly what I did last night.

I should stop right here and mention that I don't use FB all that much anymore.  It has gotten old for me... I've been on for so long that I'm entirely bored with it by this point.  So when I post something, I tend to forget that many people are on facebook far, far, FAR more than I am.  Last night, I made a simple change to my relationship status.  I went from "In a Relationship" to "Engaged".  I didn't think it was that big of a deal, because it's just a status, after all.  We've been "Engaged" for a while.  I didn't really make a big deal of it before or during my cousins' wedding, because that was her weekend, not mine.  So I guess it's true, this was the first time I'd made any sort of "announcement" formal or informal.


I had to turn my phone off, because people were so shocked/surprised/eager to congratulate me on being engaged.  Even on vibrate, it was getting to be excessive!  It reminded me of something that Alyx had sent me... it was a quotation from the LDS General Conference that took place last weekend.  I'm not Mormon, but it was profound to me, and I think it applies to this situation perfectly:

President Uchtdorf spoke how people, with the click of a mouse can "connect" with thousands of "friends" without facing a single one of them. "Technology can be a wonderful thing, and it is particularly useful when we cannot be near our loved ones.... However, I believe that we are not headed in the right direction, individually and as a society, when the most frequent way we connect with family or friends is by re-posting humorous pictures, forwarding trivial things, or linking them to sites on the Internet.... If we fail to give our best personal self and undivided time to those who are truly important to us, one day we will regret it.

And it went on:
"Let us resolve to cherish those we love by spending meaningful time with them, doing things together, and cultivating treasured memories."

She didn't share with me who made these statements.  I'm sure that one or two of you watched General Conference, and hopefully you can share in the comments.  But really... it worries me that instead of sharing information one person at a time, holding a gathering with a group of friends and family to share news, we update our status.  And honestly, that's why I chose to back off of my facebook usage... it's become an easy replacement for spending time with friends and family.  As soon as I realized that I had used the "easy way out," I felt really guilty.  Here I was, doing the very thing that I really didn't want to do.

As a person who puts their thoughts and experiences "out there" on the internet, I can easily get trapped in this situation where I would rather just post a blog post about a popular topic... so now I'm challenging myself to not make these "big general announcements" before I tell key people in my life.  I never realized how big of a challenge this could really be.

How do you feel about facebook?
What method do you usually use for sharing news?


  1. I closed down my CB account cold turkey almost 2 years ago and haven't missed it a bit. I was 'friends' with something like 200 people and at some point realized that a) I don't really know 200 people and b) half of these people I only communicate with via FB. It just became too time consuming, too much drama, and a drain on my life. I'm sad that I've 'lost' friends because I don't have FB anymore (remind me tomorrow to tell you the 'i'm pregnant' facebook friend story) and there are a lot of people whom I'm still friends with but rarely talk to now. It's more important to me to live with intention and to be authentic to who I am. I am NOT a person who is friends with people I went to high school with. And if I haven't seen you in over a year, we probably aren't friends anymore either.

    Of course, I miss out on some family stuff too. For instance, my sister has a b/f and I didn't know b/c I'm not on FB. What makes me the most hurt & upset about it is that people no longer pick up on the phone or write letters. I write letters all the freakin' time, and rarely do people respond. It would be nice if we could communicate in more then 120 characters at a time...

    Rant much? And I'm done...

  2. i'm not a fan of such things as fb or twitter. i barely open or check my fb and i don't even tweet. my mom come from a big family and so does my dad. i have lots of aunts and uncles, so the news-spreading method works through them, haha

  3. Words of truth right here!!! Your FB status should only come after you've told or shared with the important people (in my mind anyways)

    Great reminder!

  4. I am a huge fan of Facebook for the reasons you are not a fan of Facebook. I love being able to generally keep up with people and the day-to-day goings on of their lives. However, I totally get what you're saying about it being a big, black hole that we can easily fall in to. I agree with you and the others who mentioned it...let the top people know first, and then make the public service announcement. :)

  5. Facebook is lame. And I've noticed more and more people are feeling that way. I prefer twitter for a couple of reasons. 1. I only have one family follower on twitter. 2. It is impossible to post a novel with the limited character allowance. People air way too much dirty laundry on fb for my liking.

  6. Silly girl, Dieter F. Uchtdorf said it ( I guess what I sent you just says "President Uchtdorf") my bad!!

    And I am so with you on not being super into fb anymore. It's lost its appeal to me.

  7. I dislike Facebook because of the annoying behavior of some people - vague "mysterious" status updates, sappy inspirational quote pictures, people ranting about "drama" with family and friends, etc. I kind of miss the days when only a certain group of people had blogs and websites.


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