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The new way to dump someone.

I’m always the last one standing, it seems.  I will try to fix it, rather than end it.  Eventually the guy gets so sick of me that he can’t stand looking at me.  But enough of that.  This is not going to be a rant about past loves.  I’m actually talking about Facebook friends!

Before social networking sites, friendships came and went as life ebbed and flowed.  There were some friends that I stuck with because I loved them too much to not have them in my life, even if it was logistically impractical to continue the friendship.  Other friends drifted away gradually, decreasing in number of phone calls or letters (remember writing letters???) and eventually becoming just a memory.  “This reminds me of so-and-so.  I wonder what he/she is up to these days?”  And that was where I left it, because there was really no way to know.  More than likely, that person has turned around and walked the opposite direction to avoid me in the grocery store and hopes every day that I never white-out their doorstep again, but I don’t know that.  I just continue to believe that life took us in opposite directions, and I hope that the person remembers the fun times we shared.  Then I move on with my day and everything is fine.

With Facebook, the end of a friendship is an official declaration.  The person de-friends you, and you find out when you go to their page to see if they’ve posted any new pictures, to check if they’ve moved or changed jobs, or if you just want to say hello.  You see the privacy statement, saying that you need to be their friend in order to see their stuff.  And then the realization hits you that this person has declared that they are no longer your friend, but they never even bothered to say goodbye!

I’m sure I am being oversensitive about this, but being in a new town with no actual friends in my physical presence, I spend a lot of time on Facebook checking in on my far-flung peeps.  It’s my connection to my past life (or lives, to be more precise), and naturally the people from my past were a big part in shaping the person I am today.  I’ve noticed at least five people who have de-friended me since I’ve moved here.  As far as I was concerned, we were still friends!  Why not at least warn me that you’re de-friending me, and maybe I can correct my ways!  Am I not “liking” your stuff enough?  Are my comments offensive?  Or are you just upset at my lack of comments?  What am I doing wrong?

Okay, I am 95% sure that I lost one friend because my blog offended them.  I am sure of this because they de-friended me shortly after making a comment about one of my posts.  That’s fair, I suppose, because I am completely unsympathetic when it comes to religion, kids, politics, bad manners, or pretty much anything, really.  I respect your opinion, but if you can’t respect mine, then just stop reading my blog!

Another one de-friended me most likely because they didn’t get my sense of humor.  I understand that too.  I am pretty sarcastic most of the time, and if you don’t speak fluent sarcasm, it’s just going to sound like total bitchiness.  Sorry.  Nothing I can do about that.

But what about the friends I’ve drank with – or who've bought a drink for me, or vice versa?  We’ve hung out, shared time, exchanged ideas, got drunk, whatever.  Or friends I’ve worked with and saw more often than I saw my significant other?  Or the friends I grew up with?  A connection that goes back almost four decades, in my opinion, is one to keep.  Why would these people decide, all of a sudden, that I wasn’t worthy of staying on their Facebook list?  Is my profile picture ugly?

I guess the moral of the blog is this:  Please don’t de-friend me.  I look at your page.  I read your stuff.  I love your pictures.  I see your posts, and they make me smile.  I just don’t always have something profound to say about it.  If you must end our friendship, just tell me first.  Then I can have an opportunity to cry into my wine while I think of something wonderful to do that will make you love me again.

Ohhhh, right.  On second thought, just don’t tell me.  It's probably better that way.

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