It may not seem like a big deal but social media has given us the power to cut someone out of our life, just like that, without seeing them in person.
When people unfriend me, the first thing I ask myself is why? What did I ever do to you? I remember I lost someone as a friend on Facebook after I hurt one of their friends online. That was something that I never meant to do, I was feeling sick and grumpy when it happened, I later apologized for the act and the victim was forgiving, but that still cost me that other person who never returned. It’s likely they blocked me even though it’s been years and I have never done something else like that ever since.
But, when people remove me when I haven’t done anything, I find it questionable. Like one time, someone unfriended me and then added me again months later. He then messaged me and said he just needed to take a break from what I was posting.
Uh okay, well you could have just hit snooze on me instead of dramatically unfriending. Also, I post nothing but cute animals, bands, and video game stuff on Facebook so I don’t see why that person would want a break from it to a point where they’d want to cut ties.
Then there was another person who unfriended me because I was apparently posting too much KISS stuff in her eyes. Again you could have just muted me if you don’t like KISS. If you still like me as a person but we don’t have the same interests, then why unfriend me? That’s a little over the top don’t you think?
I have cut people out of my online circle for posting political things nonstop or pornographic art of women which I reported and Facebook did nothing. Why? Because I hate politics on social media and art like that is offensive to me.
Hell, everyone is offended by something today! Though I fail to understand whether what I post would be seen as offensive at all. That is another reason why I choose not to talk about real-world issues online unless it affects me directly or the community I’m part of.
Living with a combination of ASD and anxiety, I find myself questioning my own actions that led to the unfriending from that person, I may feel insecure and desire to know what it was I did to have that person no longer want me in their online life. I continue to think it couldn’t have been something I posted, did we get into a disagreement, or were they just looking to clean up their feed? Even so, if it were the last one, I only remove people that I don’t really talk to, ever or people who disrespect me. But on the other side of the screen, perhaps someone who got unfriended by me is wondering why I did it. I remember I had one guy who liked literally everything I posted and I would ask, like does this person even know what this is, like a post about Darksiders for instance?
Like I said, the Internet has made it so easy for us to do actions that are much harder to do in real life. It hurts more to have a friend break up with you in person but online, a simple click of a button and it’s over and you don’t get closure, or you do but there’s always a possibility that it’s for something that is a molehill and not a mountain.
One time I felt somewhat hurt by someone unfriending me. It was my best friend’s friend whom he considered his other best friend. I added her and she seemed really sweet. I met her in person a few times and she was always happy to see me. It turns out she didn’t live too far away either. The last time I saw her in person was at a recreation centre and her son was running around full of energy and I chatted with her for a few minutes.
Then all of a sudden I woke up one morning and discovered she unfriended me. I was confused and sad because of how sweet she was to me. What did I do? I didn’t say anything mean to her or share something offensive. She still remained best buddies with my friend. He’s told me she’s had some anxiety issues but still I wish I had closure. She could have been someone I’d like to hang out with outside of Facebook.
That was the experience that hit me the most. When it’s someone you know offline and all of a sudden you lose contact, it can be more damaging mentally, especially if you’re like me and have challenges with social interactions.
Have you ever felt this way? Social media is a great outlet but this is one negative aspect about it that doesn’t get discussed often.
6 thoughts on “The Damages of Unfriending”
I sorta unfriended everyone I know by abruptly deleting my Facebook many years ago, haha. It was full of false family and fake friends so I have no regrets. The people I really cared about made an effort to keep in contact with me, which was great!
But yeah, when I was on social media it did hurt whenever I notice someone specifically unfollowed me.
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Yeah Facebook can be unpleasant at times so leaving is something just for one’s own good.
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I feel sad for you, but in the meanwhile, you don’t have to care too much about unfriending by someone else. It’s normal. Just remember fakes friends are a lot whereas true friends are less. Don’t let the emotion clouds your judgment.
I do not, but I also have the right to express it here and what it can sometimes cause to one’s mentality even if those were never true friends.
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I have one criteria to unfriend someone on Facebook. If it would be weird for me to reach out and say hi, then they get unfriended. I try to keep my Facebook friends lower than 200.
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Sometimes less is better. Chances of drama arising are lower.