Facebook allows us to feel like we know our “friends” without actually interacting with them face-to-face. This is due in part to the fact that people who we’ve only hung out with once have total access to our personal information. Whether you have “added” random people to your Facebook or vice versa, there is a certain vulnerability associated with the site that oftentimes gets ignored.
Think of the people you call when you were just asked out. Your closest friends and family are typically the individuals notified. Over time (if all goes well), other people start to notice or find out about your new relationship status, but do these extraneous people (such as a person you had a class with or a lunch date) deserve the same updates as the people closest to you? Sure, it might not seem like such a bad thing when random people “like” your new status, but what about if you’ve just ended a year-long, or longer, relationship? What if the person who knew your every quirk and desire, the person who you would do anything for, decided you just weren’t “the one”? Then how does it feel when their friends “like” their “single and ready to mingle” status?
Photos and statuses act as the ultimate busybody, allowing others to see who was hooking up and who just broke up. It’s hard to ignore the constant News Feed on your laptop, phone, et cetera if, like most of us, you’re involved in some sort of “social media.” This type of information shouldn’t affect anyone other than the parties involved, but we all know it instantly becomes the business of all of your 500-plus “friends.”
It is crucial to be aware of the information you’re providing on Facebook. Additionally, keep in mind that it is a public domain and your comments can be heard louder than ever. While I am not condoning bashing someone, I do understand that it is cathartic for some individuals to do so in order to help them post-breakup. Could your comment potentially hurt someone’s feelings? I know this will sound a little like elementary school, but all I can think of is “if you have nothing nice to say, don’t say it at all.” It’s all too common to hear about the nasty things people say in regard to breakups, even when it in no way affects them. Breakups are hard, and they’re even more difficult to deal with now that they are splashed all over the web. While it is human nature to gossip, at least try to remember that if you want to say something about someone, your audience is going to be a lot larger than if it were a one-to-one conversation in person.