Facebook is Making Me Petty

fb bd postThe prompt word for the day is—Petty.

I shouldn’t share this but I will. Yesterday was my birthday. I’d gone for years—waaay before Facebook—receiving two or three birthday cards in the mail, a handful of phone calls, and my husband and the girls for birthday love. However, with Facebook and my 500+ new friends, I’ve gotten spoiled. More than spoiled, I’ve become vindictive. Petty in a way I never would’ve dreamed possible.

I send birthday comments and make birthday posts to my “friends” pages with the thought in mind that I’m laying groundwork for when it’s my turn to receive the favor. So yesterday—my birthday‑—I expected greetings from every last one of my close “fb friends”. I’d sent hundreds between my last birthday and this one, so at the end of the night, it surprised me—no astonished me—to count only seventy-five likes and 47 comments.

Now I can’t be sure, without painstaking work, the exact persons who didn’t like or comment, but it’s easy to pick out the ones that (in my mind) should have. They are the ones for whom I add the birthday hat, the cake, and the balloon emojis to their greetings.

On others, I Google nice pictures of birthday cakes or flattering pictures of men and women who resembled the birthday man or woman, but are waaay more flattering. I think up witty references to my “friend” and post all of that with a kissy face emoji!

Being ignored by these people was devastating. People I don’t even know wrote “HBD” or clicked the like or love buttons when someone else wrote “Happy Birthday!! Yay!”

Can you understand why I say Facebook has made me petty? Every year—Hmm, year and a half—I go through my friends list and cull out the voyeurs. These are people who never post, post only about themselves, and never like my pictures or my status. They are the ones who at birthday time ignore the list of January birthdays that Facebook so generously shares with us.

I am fond of writing a short status post the day before saying goodbye to the voyeurs explaining why they are of no use to me, and why I don’t need them lurking around in the background. Petty with a capital “P”.  It looks like that tradition will be in effect this year, as well.

I’m talking about my personal Facebook page. Not my Author page. That is for my readers who don’t care about my personal life. Any friends I make there are gravy and I am happy to roll with the seven birthday comments I receive there.


Posted by

Educator, Author, Blogger, and supporter of Independent Writers. One mystery novel, The Neon Houses, http://amzn.to/2kSqdPX. Find me on Twitter @boom_lyn.

13 thoughts on “Facebook is Making Me Petty

  1. Oh Linda, I don’t go on Facebook every day so I’m not sure what birthdays I miss 😦 If it was someone in my situation then I wasn’t on Facebook that day and didn’t see it… Facebook can really bring out strong emotions… Sometimes I look at how “perfect” some lives look… but truly it’s not perfect for anyone… Oh social media… I do hope you had a wonderful birthday 🙂


  2. Facebook has a tendency of bringing out the evil in all of us. We all have it and every now and then it pokes its ugly head. Every now and then I thank the stars that social media, smart phones and so on did not exist back in the 80’s. I would probably be unemployable today.

    BTW: HB 😉

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Happy birthday, Linda!

    I admit I’m not a fan of Facebook. I joined because my publisher expected it, but I recently bailed. I hid my birthday and never posted on my personal page. Had there been a way to maintain an author page without a personal profile, I might have hung there. Social media has made many messages trivial, which is a shame.

    I hope you continue to embrace the true friends who visit your page and support you. It sounds like you have a lot of them!


  4. I hope you had a great birthday! Happy belated Birthday:) I am glad I’m not the only one who notices when people don’t wish me a Happy Birthday that should on Facebook. I try to remind myself to focus on the wishes I get, it works…sometimes…lol. Happy New Year, too!


  5. Hey Linda! I hope you had a great birthday. I know what you mean. I am absolutely devastated when I miss someone’s birthday on Facebook. Sometimes I get a notification that someone had a birthday yesterday, and I’m yelling at my screen, “So why didn’t you notify me of that yesterday.” Sometimes I don’t get the notification at all and go to my events page to see if someone had a birthday that I missed. Some things to keep in mind, not everyone signs on to Facebook every day and Facebook sometimes notifies us of birthdays and sometimes they don’t. 😀


  6. Reblogged this on adaratrosclair and commented:
    Lol. I had to reblog this! It’s incredibly candid and sincere. Linda puts a name to those silent lurkers on Facebook: voyeurs. Perhaps, I should get to pruning useless branches on my FB tree, too. And pruning begets growth. 🙂


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