Un-Friending

Lots of people, including myself, have a regular purge of their Facebook friends. My criteria include:

  • Do they ever comment on my posts?
  • Do they ever like my posts?
  • Have I ever met this person in the flesh?
  • Do I have any interaction at all with this person?

If not, I un-friend them.  This is something I do once every six months or so, depending on what’s on TV.  As this is Germany, the answer is, often, not very much.  Un-friending people can be quite a cathartic experience.  Some people, about twenty of them, I have blocked on Facebook, eg one particular person who had a habit of looking at my Facebook page, mis-reading my comments and then feeding drivel back to various relatives of mine.  Just because I comment on a photo, “Dinner with the potential in-laws,” does not mean you need to rush out and buy a posh frock or suit for a forthcoming wedding.

Sorry to disappoint.

In the days before Facebook, and I’ve been on Facebook since, I think, 2007, de-friending required different methods.

  • Buying a new address book, copying over by hand all the contacts I wanted to keep, and then throwing out the old book after a few weeks.
  • Going into my email account and doing the same electronically, including:
    • Deleting all emails from the contact
    • Deleting their email address
    • Putting them on my ‘block sender’ list
  • In one case, a university (fair-weather) friend, called “Deeps,” I even:
    • Looked for any photos of him in my photo albums, as in the proper ones, not online
    • Took out all the photos methodically
    • Methodically placed them into a strong envelope, with no covering note
    • Wrote Deeps’ name and address in block capitals on the envelope
    • Omitted my return address on the back (I had moved house a couple of times since last being in contact with him, two years before)
    • Queued up at the local post office to ensure I had the correct postage, before placing the package in the local post box

In the case of Deeps’ photos, I derived a huge sense of closure.  My only regret: that I had not done so earlier.

Facebook friends are not real friends.  Fair-weather friends aren’t, either.   One reason I love Düsseldorf is, I have some good, genuine friends.

Have a friendly day, won’t you?

 

 

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