Sunday, August 10, 2014

Why I Left Facebook

Facebook is supposed to be a place for "friends" to share life and keep in contact with one another but it's not working.  I’m not really sure what sorts of friends watch their friends from a distance without ever saying one word to them.  Those are more like stalkers in my opinion.  Maybe Facebook should change the word “friends” to “stalkers.”  That would make it more realistic.  Stalkers watch people from a distance and assume they know everything about that person, when in reality, they know nothing. 

So I took a break from Facebook, about a 6-week break.  Maybe some of you noticed, maybe you didn’t.  It was nice, wonderful actually.  I really enjoyed it.  I had more time for things.  The first week I was off Facebook, I was the happiest I had been in a long while.  People who noticed I wasn’t on Facebook sent me emails or messages to ask what happened to me.  When I told them I wanted a break but still wanted to keep in touch, they stayed in touch.  They sent me pictures and encouraging words via other social media outlets.  I felt cared for, loved again by people I haven’t seen in over a year.

In my month off Facebook, one thing I realized is how easy it is for people to see what is going on in my life without even saying one word.  They can quietly come to my page without me knowing, see everything I have been doing via photos, and then when they finish, assume I’m doing great when in all actuality I wasn’t.  If they wanted to make their presence known, maybe they would like a picture.  If I was lucky, they would write a comment on that picture. 

You see, for the past several months, life has been overwhelming.  Being a single with no family in a country halfway across the world from them, with friends I’ve only made and had for a year if I’m lucky hasn’t really helped.  I really need my support back home, but it’s not there.   Don’t get me wrong, these friends I have made in Korea are great, but they come and go like a revolving door because that’s just how the foreign community in Korea works.  On top of that, Korea works people to death so there is no time to encourage friends here.

My dad was diagnosed with cancer. I have been working 50+ hours a week without overtime pay while dealing with other crazy work drama. I had frustrations with relationships some were able to be saved, some didn’t make it, and one….well…’s still in the works and I’m praying it survives.  I’m about to loose one of my closest friendships in Korea with 6 months left here.  On top of all this I’m really struggling with making a decision about what to do when my time in Korea ends. These issues just skim the surface of everything else.  For being a city with over 10 million people, it really is a lonely place. 

It’s easy to put up a false persona on Facebook because people only want to hear about the good things.  The problem with this is we think everyone’s life is perfect which depresses us even more (because we are Facebook stalkers, not friends).  We don’t want to read about peoples depressing life but then, when all we read are peoples good things, we are depressed because we are comparing what everyone else has with ourselves.

I plan on going off Facebook forever. The only reason I’m back on is because I left without saying goodbye.  There may be people who do want to keep in touch but only have Facebook contact information for me (and there are some pictures I have been wanting that I only have saved on Facebook so I had to sign on to get them.)

Here are ways you can get in direct contact with me once I get off facebook:

Google Hangout
My blog

If you would like to know how you could reach me on one of these social media outlets please individually message me and I will share that contact information with you.  I really do want to stay connected with the people I love, but I want it to be healthy, and I don’t think Facebook is a healthy way to stay connected.  I’m not really sure when I will go off Facebook again, but I won’t stay on for long.

Let me add one final thing, for those of you who have sent me letters, care packages, and sweet messages, I appreciate you more than you will ever know.  Your love came right at the perfect time and I thank you.  May God bless you for your kindness and friendship.

(Side Note: This post also applies to me.  I'm referring to myself as a "stalker."  Reading this post again it sounds like I'm attacking my Facebook friends.  I have had many keep in touch via Facebook and I am grateful for them.  They are probably better at keeping contact than I am myself.)

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