I love Facebook for a multitude of reasons. Not least of which is being able to keep in touch with friends who live far away and share information quickly and easily with them. I also dislike it for a number of reasons. And it is for those reasons that I have chosen to deactivate my account for the moment.
Facebook can be a huge time waster. It is very easy to sit there and scroll through pages to find out what is happening in your friend's lives, catch up on groups you belong to and check out businesses. I just found that Facebook was taking up more and more of my time. I would literally feel compelled to sit down at the computer and check it at certain times of the day. And that was taking time away from my children and my life which, to me, wasn't right. I used to justify things and say that my time on Facebook was my 'time out' from the kids. But it got to the stage when I would 'have to' just do something on Facebook and the kids needs got put to the background while I did that something.
I also found that I was judging myself by other people's posts. While I knew in my heart that people don't always put up honest posts, I always felt that I was inadequate in my parenting/life when I'd read a post about how someone had cleaned their whole house, baked, done such-and-such an activity with the kids, and so on. I felt like I just couldn't compete (and for those that did and do put up honest posts - I thank you!)
As much as I hate to admit it too, I do have a jealous streak. I wish I could be one of those people that is happy with their lot in life (and believe me I am trying to be) but I'd often see posts about people doing such-and-such or having such-and-such and I would feel jealous. It got to a stage where even going on Facebook would leave me with a horrible feeling and so I knew it was time to get off there.
It does make me a little sad that most people haven't even noticed that I have left Facebook. I've had no emails or anything from people that I thought I was quite good friends with. Which makes me believe that they have so many friends on their Facebook account that someone leaving their friend count does not even make a blip on their radar.
And that's another thing that bugs me about Facebook - the anonymity of it all. Most people are friends with so many people that if their count dropped they wouldn't even know who it was that left their friend's list. At least I always used to notice when my friend count dropped and made an effort to find out who was actually missing!
It just all feels so superficial. Whatever happened to picking up the phone or connecting with someone in real life (or even email is a bit more personal than Facebook!!) I feel sad that things have come to this. And the sadder thing is that I think my Facebook hiatus will have to come to an end soon. Mainly because I need it to keep a connection with friends. I also need to help moderate our local ABA group page and lots of businesses only have Facebook pages these days too!
I definitely think I will be changing the way I use Facebook in the future though. I will be using it more as a tool to do things rather than as something that controls my life. I've really enjoyed these couple of months without it in my life.