Why Can’t I Unfriend You?

Social media has complicated the act of cutting someone out. I was recently talking with a friend about how unexpectedly difficult it is to lose touch with someone. An unhealthy BF. An excessively dramatic friend. Just someone who pisses you off who’s in your friend circle. It’s obvious that discretion is key. I try not to perpetuate the dramatics. If I decide that I’m over you, I’m over you; It’s time to move on.

But what happened to the days when cutting someone out didn’t come with all the strings attached? An easy, delete phone number and byeee. These days it’s really just not that easy. Too many constant reminders; Too often we’re  always ON. It makes even the most composed crack and fall back into a perpetually unhealthy relationship.

For me, it’s clear that unspoken social rules have arisen, dictated by social media norms. Who knows who set these norms but, at least for my generation, they’re well established. For instance, is it not true that unfriending someone on facebook is seen as excessively dramatic? As we all are friends with countless, superfluous acquaintances, removing a friend on facebook can be likened to throwing down the gauntlet in an overly rash, kind of crazy way. Even though it only takes a few clicks… Oh no she didn’t.

So we don’t want to seem crazy but isn’t the easiest way to move on, by removing yourself completely from something that causes you to lose your zen? Isn’t removing a person from your life, even if for a time being, the best case scenario for moving on or retaining a resting state of sanity?

Let’s ponder over one of my recent friends who was trying to write someone out. With said social rules in place, she couldn’t unfriend her ex-flame so she just blocked all notifications from him on Facebook. This way she’s not crazy to unfriend him but didn’t see constant reminders popping up on her newsfeed.

For self-validation that she was making a clean break, she decided to delete his number off of her iPhone. Sick of his text conversations she deleted those too. Little did she know that an iPhone never really deletes a contact from iMessage. Eerily, if you drunkenly search for said deleted number, your iPhone remembers the name. Dangerous. Why can’t I just delete a person from my life Siri?!

But ok, so she dealt with Facebook and (kind of) her contact book. But what about Instagram, and Twitter, and Snapchat… Are you really going to go to the trouble to remove a person from all of those social media outlets? You may still get pangs of old memories when seeing his new insta, but are you going down the road of having the person find out that you unfriended them? Won’t that give them satisfaction that you’re thinking of them to unfriend them? Won’t it close the door forever on something you thought you could possibly mend in the future? I know that it may sound trivial, but people this is real talk in 2013.

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One thought on “Why Can’t I Unfriend You?

  1. The Cougar says:

    God, Brian, who knew it was so hard to be your age!

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