One question to Ask Yourself Before Unfriending Someone on Facebook

By Bridgette Petrino | life hacks

Oct 20

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Do you unfriend Facebook friends?

Today’s post is mostly questions. Because, well, I am curious.

Have you unfriended Facebook friends? Have you been unfriended? And, is it just me, or does this election seem to have brought more tension than in the past?

I’ve seen all types of Facebook posts leading up to this election. Some funny, some valid, but most angry. It’s kind of scary.

And, at this point I’ve lost count of how many times I’ve seen a post say something like… “If you support _____, you can unfriend me now.” Um, okay….

I’ll admit, I am fairly new to Facebook. So, maybe these types of posts were just as commonplace back in 2012. But, I have a hunch that they weren’t. This time feels different.

Why do you go on Facebook?

Most of us go on Facebook to be social. We want to know where our friends are hanging out, we want to see adorable family photos, we want tips and inspiration, we want to support causes, we want to laugh and be entertained, and most of all, we want to watch someone make a delicious nacho dip in under 30 seconds in a glass bowl with a wooden spoon.

What we don’t want is to feel attacked, pressured, or threatened. Especially because of who we support in this upcoming election. It’s a personal decision. It’s our right as Americans.

I’ve already decided on who I am voting for and, I think most others have as well. At this point, if a new story comes out on WikiLeaks, or if someone posts something really witty on Facebook about why I should vote for a particular candidate, it’s still highly unlikely that I am going to change my mind. 

 Ask Yourself

So, before you unfriend that person on Facebook ask yourself “why?”

Is it out of anger? Jealousy? Fear?

I’ll admit, I’ve unfriended Facebook friends. It’s become shockingly routine for me to have to block people on Facebook because they are sending me creepy messages. #canyounot

I’ve also chosen to take breaks from friend’s newsfeeds by “unfollowing” for a time because I just needed a break from their posts.

But, publicly slandering or shaming because of a difference of opinion is completely different.

If you find yourself unfriending out of anger and you really want to persuade someone to see your point of view, try love instead.

Posting opinions on Facebook is easy. Anyone can do it. Having real conversations that demonstrate true concern and connection. That’s hard. And, that’s why it doesn’t happen as often as it should.

Hatred and anger stir up more hatred and anger. Love and compassion generates understanding. Click To Tweet

Evaluate your emotions before unfriending. Unfriending someone oftentimes says more about you than the person that you are unfriending. And, check out my Tiny Talks Shop chat with Nancy Hornback about unfriending on Facebook because of political views.

PS – Ain’t got no time for the drama? Me either. Reconnect to who YOU are without feeling guilty.

quinoa

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About the Author

Bridgette is Founder and CEO of Mommy Needs a Timeout. She empowers moms to reconnect with their identities OUTSIDE of being a mom, without the guilt.

  • Very rarely have I unfriended a person. In the past, when I have, it is usually some person from high school that sent me a friend request and a year later we are not “connected” or commenting on each others posts. So, why even bother.

    However, this election, more than anything else I have see a lot of unfriending happening. Including the temporary… “I need to unfriend you until after the elections are over”. What makes this worse than any other time, is that I’m seeing this trend among family members with differing opinions.

    Over politics, no… I’m not ready to unfriend anyone. However there are other things in 2016 that take me to that edge. Especially on topics such as black lives matter, that I’ve witnessed people saying things that shock me. Things that if i knew they believed that way, when we first met, I would have never built a relationship with that person.

    Now, I’m stuck between “do I maintain this friendship, hoping to influence and change their perspective” or “do I run for higher ground and not look back”.

    Some of these types of posts (and in some cases it includes political) seem to be bringing out the worst in people’s characters… and I have to decide if I want that in my life.

    I also think “unfriending” wouldn’t happen as frequently if our FB accts were only linked with people we had actual relationships with vs. acquaintances or mutual interests but have never met. It’s easy to walk away from a friendship when you’ve never met the person face to face, or see each other a few times a year.

    • bridgettepetrinowp

      Hi Gena! Thanks for your comment. You make some really great points. I agree that many times these posts seem to bring out the worst in people. And, it’s a fine line between unfollowing/unfriending to eliminate the negativity, or staying friends in hopes to influence for better. I’ve unfollowed people who I felt were bringing out the worst in me (not their fault, but me needing to work on myself more) – I know that spending time on social media has been proven to cause anxiety.

  • Pingback: 3 Quick Tips for Lowering Stress in the Wake of the Election - Mommy Needs a Timeout()

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