Thursday, July 26, 2012

How Facebook almost Plunged me into a Deep Depression

I’ve been a little depressed lately, and I’m embarrassed to admit why. But we are on the internet, right, so I have to come clean and tell you everything I’m thinking even though it’s trivial.

 The cause of my depression has been Facebook. For the past six weeks I have been posting, and no one has been commenting on anything I’ve posted. If I write a blog, and post the link on my Facebook page, not that many people have been reading it.

 My first thought was that I had reached my social media peak. I was over the hill, no longer of any interest to my Facebook friends. Perhaps, I thought, since getting married in March, I had stopped being interesting, and had just faded into bulk of 30somethings who had settled down instead of being known as my fun, quirky, single self.

I thought about quitting Facebook, but I thought to myself, if no one has any interest in what I have to say, I still have interest in looking at the cute pictures of friend’s kids, the funny post cards that sometimes give me a chuckle, and sometimes don’t.

 Still, I felt rejected, dejected.

 Yet I persevered and still posted.

 I posted a picture with the comment, “Hello from the desert,” a status thanking everyone for their birthday wishes, an announcement that I was heading to Gay Pride Parade, a Cubs Game with my Dad, and Sixteen Candles. And also I wrote thoughts that before June would have been abuzz on my wall. I wrote comments about hot new topics the health care law, a Florida lifeguard fired for drowning, the pregnant Yahoo CEO, an idea about the electricity problems on the East Coast.

A picture I posted that no one liked on Facebook 

So in my state of rejection, I dramatically decreased the number of status updates. I turned to another social media site in my hour of need, Twitter, and sometimes heard from my followers there. However, most of my followers on Twitter aren’t my friends, and so the feedback just wasn’t the same, although it did get me through the darkest of social media days.

 I also received some self esteem boost when I posted as the administrator for my company’s Facebook page. There, my posts were liked, commented on and shared. But on my personal Facebook page, nothing.

The last straw was yesterday. My husband and I are selling our bookcases and I posted them on Facebook. No one said a word. I was just really surprised because I know a lot of people are moving and they are great book cases. So I turned to my Facebook gurus/addicts the 20somethings in my office.

Now here’s the thing. I hate to even say that, because it makes me sound like the old fogey who doesn’t know how to use Facebook. But I swear I do. I am actually quite tech savvy. So the two 20somethings checked their Facebooks and noticed that they didn’t receive the bookshelves post. Then they commented that they haven’t seen me post anything lately.

Together, we checked my privacy settings to find out that I had somehow set it to only post to one friend.

I had been cutting down trees in the forest and no one was hearing them fall.

This discovery was embarrassing, we got a good chuckle, and we changed the setting. They gloated in the way that I have many times when I have helped an older person with a computer problem (although geeze, I hope I wasn’t as obvious).

 It still isn’t working properly, so I’m going to have to manually select my Facebook statuses for everyone to see. And yes, while it is ridiculous that I thought not one of my Facebook friends “liked” me anymore, it is sometimes like me to go to the glass half empty pretty quickly.

 I know - this whole post is ridiculous in its entirety. Why should I care if anyone “likes”, comments, or shares what I say? Because let’s face it. We are all validated by Facebook in some way, otherwise why would anyone use it? Everyone likes a little attention, even if it’s virtual, and we all enjoy our small piece of fame one click at a time.



Amy@Diapeepees said...

Can't resist...I'll have to send you a facebook friend request.

Eric Marcus said...

Sorry I didnt like your post about the bookshelves. Thanks for making me THE ONLY ONE who could see it!

daliahj said...

You should know that within the past 72 hours, I thought about you and that I hadn't seen/heard anything from you recently...and although we haven't seen each other in over two years, I am always happy to see your updates or read articles you tweet. I haven't been on Twitter much lately - but I do know exactly what you're talking about. As I read this article in Newsweek, I thought, Is this me ?
Just so you know that someone is listening/reading/understanding. Great piece on Reihl Hunter, BTW.