Monday, April 18, 2011

Why I'm deleting my Facebook

Because I'm nauseous about the sheer idea that FB won't be a part of my life anymore.
Because I've spent way too much time on it since Lydia's arrival.
Because I've spent way too much time on it, period.

The mere thought that I'm deleting my FB page (or at least deactivating my account) raises a lump in my throat, a swelling in my chest, bubbles in my stomach. I dread it. I dread not being able to check it, read the news feed and comment on all the pictures I see and make snarky comments on links I like. I'm scared to lose friends by doing so (as if I didn't know how to keep in contact with loved ones BEFORE FACEBOOK). I'm freaked that I won't hear about major milestones, new loves, marriages, babies...all things I love reading about online.

I joined Facebook when it first came out. I remember watching my friend count rise with each new add, grinning when I topped 100, then 200, until I hit 1000 friends. Some were really, really amazing friends, some were new acquaintances, some were people that added me (or I added them) just because they looked cool or I'd seen them in school. Some were people from long ago. I used Facebook to check homework stats with fellow students, get some gossip, and as a self-esteem boost. I'm not afraid to say that at one point in my life I used my friend count like a self-worth meter.

And it's served its purposes well. I have to hand it to the creator of Facebook on that rampart. Aside from the constant barrage of new changes to the layout and endless applications in which I have no interest in participating, I have been happy with Facebook.

Addicted even, you might say.

So that's why I'm deleting it. I think that in doing so I'll create a more fulfilling life for myself and others by communicating via a medium that isn't so...easy, I guess. It's so easy to just creep on someone's profile and "like" a picture, or comment on a status update. But is that intentional, deliberate communication? Am I fulfilled by staying in touch through status updates? For me, I need something more. I love letter-writing, and I could have written millions of them with the time I've spent on Facebook. I love getting in the car and going to see friends; with the energy I've spent on Facebook, I could have driven around the world. My email works just fine, and yet the only emails I get these days are from Baby Center, the Sioux Falls Zoo, REI and a few other spams that hit my inbox.

I will miss it, probably even shed a few tears over it. It's hard to let go of something I've cherished for almost a decade (YIKES). I'll miss the constant interactions, the photos of loved ones at my finger-tips, and the ease of communicating online as we do on Facebook. Please, please, drop me a message with your phone number, your email, your snail mail address...any way that you want to keep in touch. I text and call, and have excellent penmanship when it comes to written notes. My emails are usually laden with emoticons :) but if you can get past that, I'll email you too.

And hey, I pay $75/month for my @*$@#$^$@) Verizon phone bill. The least I want out of this is to get my money's worth for the thing. :) :)


  1. Katie -

    The last two months or so I've been on a binge of anti-technology, anti-social networking literature. (I can recommend some if you'd like.) It has been an eye opening experience to read about how human interaction has been fundamentally changed by social networking. I can see it in my own life. I have a shorter attention span, have difficulty reading at length, and generally feel less sharp. Moreover, the interactions that I do have through facebook and twitter seem so vapid and meaningless.

    Thank you for taking the plunge. Perhaps your willingness to do so will motivate me, and others, to do likewise.

    Miss you,