Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Why I Won't Facebook, Part Two

Although the reasons listed yesterday truly are legitimate, here's the real reason I refuse to Facebook, presented in story form:

A long time ago, there was a young girl who craved attention. She would do just about anything to be the center of things: sing, dance, be loud, and especially act like the know-it-all. Unbeknownst to this child, her actions would drive people away, not draw them to her as she hoped. As she got older, these behaviors resulted in fewer and fewer friends, to the point where the girl was left alone much of the time. Others thought she was independent and content to be alone. But they were wrong.
All through her high school years, the girl craved companionship, but her behavior resulted in ridicule from her peers: cruel writing on the bathroom wall, mean jokes, even a fist fight one day after school. Needless to say, her opinion of others became more and more cynical as the weeks dragged on.
When it came time for the girl to graduate from high school, she couldn't have been more ready to move on to college. And there, she found more accepting people, more understanding people, and an atmosphere where she could grow up and mature.
The girl married, had a few children, moved around the countryside a little. Ten years quickly passed from the time she'd left her hometown, never really looking back, not really keeping contact with anyone or anything. But ten years from high school graduation comes the ten-year reunion. The girl stewed about whether or not to attend. Convinced by her husband, they decided to give it a try. How bad could it be?
It was painful: Ignored. Just like high school. And who would want to relive that?
She vowed never again. But then, ten years later, she was lured back, enticed by the possibility of acceptance and redemption. And it was better. She found peace.
But she realized that, even though many people still live in the past--basking in high school glory--she had moved on. On to a fantastic present, where she is loved, accepted, and has the world's greatest friends. Why would she want to reconnect with that painful past? Why would she want to feel that rejection where people ignore your requests to "be their friend"? Hasn't adult life moved past this?

Few of my family members use Facebook. So that's not a draw. I'm sure my entire high school class is connected on there, somewhere. So? My kids don't use it, so I don't need to monitor that.

The main reason I don't use Facebook? I'm happy with who and where and what I am. And I'm not willing to risk mental anguish and rejection again.

Think you can convince me otherwise?
Give it a try. Drop me a comment and attempt the conversion.


  1. hmmmmm....sounds totally logical to me, and wise-not surprised at that! One day, a child of yours--maybe not until Lily--but one of them I'm sure will want to be on Facebook, and then you will need to monitor. Until then I vow to never ask you why you don't Facebook! For me the push was when my niece went to teach in China and could only get FB to upload her photos, and I wanted to see and stay in contact with her. Now I love it. Until that day comes for you just hit the "ignore" button when people ask!

  2. P.S. You're also correct that you have awesome friends now, and some of us are on Facebook, and we would not only accept you as our friend on FB, but send you the request! Think of the joy that would bring :)

  3. Hey, if you're not into the whole FB thing, I'm cool with that. Truth is, I'm not all that into it myself.

    I'd much rather blog, any day!


    PS. I consider myself lucky to be your friend, on FB or off. (And I have a feeling that would have been true in high school, too.) Except that I would have been in high school and you would have been in grade school, lol. So maybe we would have had to settle for babysitter and babysittee. =)

  4. I will tell you that I am on facebook but do not understand the whole concept - I never post - Well, except when I got hacked and it told everyone in my ward I was Preggo (still not true.) It does remind me a little of high school - do I accept this friend or not....but it is nice to see what my kids are up to.

    I respect your reasons and think you can do what you want!! Really what difference will it ever make? Save the time to up date your blog - I love that!

  5. I won't try to convert you. Facebook can be a good thing when it is used correctly. It's really only good to keep up with people who are far away who you can't reach conveniently any other way. And if you don't want to/need to, then don't. I can already tell you that I won't keep up with most of the kids from High School for the rest of my life on facebook. I haven't even scanned the Austria facebook pics. I mean, I have my own. Why waste time on artificial relationships?
    Anyway, sorry it's still hot in AZ! I hope everything is going well with you!

  6. The thing that pushed me over the edge into joining was when I realized that my friends and family members knew what was going on in Sarah's life before I did. They would call and ask...why is Sarah so happy or why did Sarah have a bad day? So I got an account to know what was going on. I found it is a fun way to keep in touch with distant friends. I think I only have one friend from long ago on there...and she was my friend long before the agony of Jr High...on up. (I must admit I spend too much time on there though)

    P.S... I think your story is extremely common. I didn't enjoy a healthy social life until being roommates with you and "the gang", but we sure made up for lost time. ...And I refuse to attend any class reunions.

  7. Interesting reasoning, one that I've never thought of before. When I joined Facebook 5 years ago, it wasn't a place to connect with past friends, just current ones. Then, I moved to grad school and I could keep up with my friends from college. I don't like Facebook as much as I did, probably because my relationships have grown as I have. Still, it's the best way to communicate with many of my friends!

    So, obviously you're in a different place than me, so I wouldn't push you towards it at all!