Thursday, August 23, 2018

When one door closes, a blog reopens: Why I quit Facebook to save my friggin’ mind


21 days ago, I quit Facebook.  No big farewell, no angry or emotional final last words (as I’ve seen others do before sheepishly returning a couple days later), I just went to Settings—>General—>—Deactivate Account.

I thought it’d be a lot harder than it was.  I don’t mean the process involved, I worried about the withdrawal that seems to lure everyone back.  Where would I park my cyber-self when I was on my computer for no specific reason?

I joined Facebook in April 2008, and for 10+ years I don’t think there’s been a SINGLE DAY that I didn’t go on there at least 3-4 times.  I didn’t post that much, but I still had to see what others were doing, eating, drinking, thinking, watching, planting & visiting, right?

It turns out, no.  After the first day of wondering if I was missing out on something good (I’m especially fond of meltdowns), I just moved my brain on to other online things.  Hey, the Mental Floss website is still around--I haven’t been there in ages!

The reason for my quitting did have some to do with boredom & guilt for the time I spent on there, but mostly I didn’t want to feel angry or disappointed in people I know anymore.

It began around the time Trump took office—I noticed several friends on FB expressing some pretty negative things (mostly about Hillary, Obama, Democrats, whiny liberals and the like).  I had one friend (Robin, a girl I went to school with) ask how I was doing, then turn around and write “It occurred to me that the last 4 letters of Republican is “I CAN” and the last 3 of Democrat is “RAT”.  Haha!  Damn!  A friend named Brian (another old classmate) wrote “Every day I wake up happy that crooked Muslim is no longer our president.”   First of all, President Obama wasn’t Muslim and even if he was, so what?  And then I thought, I haven’t seen Brian since high school, we had zero contact even then (unless you want to count the night of our Senior Prom when I walked in with my date and he gave me a thumbs-up).  Why am I friends with him again?

Anyway, by the fall of 2017 the grumbling in my brain was growing louder, and when the snarky comments started up about banning Muslims from the country & transgenders from the military (oh and from womens restrooms too while you’re at it), I lost it one night and had my own Saturday Night Massacre.  Well, if you want to call unfriending 7-8 people a massacre.

batgun1930s Batman only takes lives when it’s absolutely necessary—I gotta be more like Batman

I have to be honest here and admit that in the days that followed, I regretted doing what I did.  Also, a couple of these people I genuinely liked.  Before Trump came along.  I made a promise to myself, no more unfriending over Trump.

And so, for the last 6-7 months I did my best to ignore the stuff I didn’t like and focus on the people who were singing my song.  My nephew Steve, my friends Jeff in Chicago and Danielle here in Pittsburgh, Colette in Virginia & Bethany in California--she’s one outspoken liberal.  And when my youngest sister posted a letter on there declaring her adoration for all things Trump, I only weakly protested—and got back “Doug isn’t America great?”  from her husband.  NO--IT’S NOT.

Y’know what?  I could go on & on here, I’m certainly sharing nothing surprising.  A couple months ago when ICE agents began pulling kids from illegal immigrants and people seeking asylum while Trump smirked & Jeff Sessions beamed, I witnessed 4 of my own friends justify the nightmarish maneuver.  One wrote “I’m not going to feel sorry for these kids when we have 400,000 of our own in our foster care system!”  Another wrote “What about the kids of fallen soldiers and law enforcement??” (because you know, one can only have so much compassion).  One wrote “They brought it on themselves, we don’t WANT their kids!” (so we’re caging them) and speaking of that, ANOTHER posted a picture of a local animal shelter and wrote “If I’m going to feel sorry for anyone locked in cages…” 

The irony here is that all 4 were 1) Christians 2) women 3) moms.  

I know that’s old news, a lot of new crap has happened since then—and I know Facebook is more than politics, and I’m sure most of my so-called friends wish politics wasn’t on there at all.  I almost do too, because there’s a lot of people I can’t look at the way I used to.  So for now at least, I’ll just focus on the few friends I have in real life.  


  1. Doug, you were missed. The Greene Getaway crew was looking for you! LOL Glad you are ok, Diana, Ron, Karen

  2. Haha, thanks very much Diana, Ron, Karen! I just had a great chat with Ron, the only reason I ducked out quietly was because I didnt know how long it would last. (I still don't.) But it sure is nice to get a message like this. :)

  3. Replies
    1. Thanks Unknown Person, very nice to hear things like that :) I may be back in the near future!

  4. Damn, Dug! I was wondering why I couldn't throw something at you!

    1. Haha! Hey Commander, I'm sorry--now I'm thinking I shoulda said something before I left! Hope you're well, I'll be back soon enough :)

  5. I really related to your above post, Doug -- you couldn't have said it any better.

    1. Glenn! It's good to hear from you, and thanks for the kind feedback, much appreciated. :)

  6. Well said, Doug, but it still means one less sane person on Facebook. If you decide to come back under an assumed name, seek me out!


    1. The nicest thing I've heard today, thanks very much Roger. And if I do, I most certainly will. :)


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