Me? Unfriendly?

I did something I never thought I’d do the other day.  Something I always said I’d never do*.  For the first time, I unfriended someone on Facebook because I was offended.

*Let me be clear:  this is not the first time I’ve unfriended someone on Facebook, and I’m not against unfriending people who have stalked you, hurt you, or unfriending exes to get space after a breakup.  Those are all perfectly good reasons to unfriend on Facebook.

No, I’m talking about the type of unfriending that usually follows a status like this:

“I’m sick and tired of people on Facebook saying they support X!  I can’t believe anybody would be such a horrible person to actually support X!  If you’re in favor of X, I don’t want to be your friend anymore in any way, shape or form!  If I see you posting about X in a way that I don’t agree with, I WILL UNFRIEND YOU!!!”

And then…I unfriended him!

WHY? 

I realized I was in a weird relationship with this person.  I was tiptoeing around issues I’d normally post about (on this blog, on Twitter) because I didn’t want to offend this one Facebook friend.  I let him have control over my life like that!  What??

Secondly, I realized I was tired of hearing this.  It felt like this “friend” spent all of his free time scouring the Internet for news articles to be offended by, then posting them to Facebook threatening to unfriend people over.  He was going out of his way to provoke fights with people, essentially.

Which brings me to my final point.  Remember when you were a kid, just learning how to be a human interacting with other humans?  You may have said, at some point in kindergarten, “If you don’t let me have a turn on the swing, then I’m not going to be your friend anymore.”  And you would have been a tiny little jerk for saying that. 

Then in grade school, you might have found yourself saying, “If you don’t come to my sleepover this weekend, then we can’t be friends anymore.”  That would have made you a medium-sized jerk. 

If, in high school, you found yourself threatening, “If you don’t tell me who you have a crush on, then I guess we aren’t really friends,” you were quite the large jerk.

BUT, if — as an adult — you find yourself typing into your Facebook:  “If you don’t agree with everything I say about every issue out there, I don’t even want to even be Internet friends with you!”

THEN, my Facebookiest of friend, You are a MASSIVE GAPING JERK of ALL JERKY JERKS.

Then, I will raise my middle finger, place it on the mouse, and I Will Unfriend You. 

Look, I have always believed that being friends with somebody means more than just agreeing all the time, having everything in common, and never saying anything the other person doesn’t like.  In fact, I have numerous and plenty friends on Facebook who routinely post opinions I disagree with, things that make me uncomfortable, statements that offend me, and things that go against my personal beliefs.    Friendship is about transcending those differences, and being friends regardless – or have you missed the point of the animated movies The Fox and the Hound, Oliver and Company, Lady and the Tramp, The Jungle Book, Up, Wall-E, basically every Disney movie EVER?  If Ariel the mermaid can be friends with a fish and a crab, maybe you can stay Facebook friends with someone who occassionally challenges your opinions and doesn’t always agree with you.  Or has gills.  Whatever.

Look, bottom line here:  I didn’t become your friend to be guilted into silence, nod in agreement with everything you say, and tiptoe around your sensitive feelings.  That’s not a good friendship at all.  And I won’t remain your friend to stay blackmailed into silence.

Even if it is only Facebook.

See?  You can learn from cartoons.
And Paula Abdul.
Paula Abdul and MC Skat Kat dated for like, years after this video,
they made it work, people.

4 thoughts on “Me? Unfriendly?

  1. hahahahhaha that Paula Abdul music video was the cherry on top of this post. For real though, when people post stupid articles (usually without researching if it is even TRUE) I unfollow them, if we were friends in kindergarten and haven't talked in 20 years, unfriend haha or just if someone is posting non stop and being outrageous about things, bye felicia! K but there is this one girl who always posts the most INSANE things and complains over EVERYTHING and honestly I sometimes just go look at her page for pure entertainment. Now I'm the mean one here haha

    xo, Candace | Lovely Little Rants

    1. Uh oh! I'm probably also posting inaccurate articles too: "Science says chocolate is really really good for you, according to science!" Guilty as charged! I love being able to keep up with friends I haven't seen in forever through facebook, though! I'm really bad at staying in touch, and Facebook makes me feel like less of a failure. I hate losing old friends so I will tolerate their bullshit posts "Vaccines proven to cause children to be allergic to crayons, new study finds!" to be able to see pictures of their wedding day, or remember their birthday, or see their dog videos! But this dude was hella aggressive and that is NOT okay. πŸ™‚

  2. Love it! You should never have to hide your own views because someone else doesn't like them. And if that person is "threatening" to delete people that don't agree with their beliefs… well then, that's no one I want to be friends with. You need to accept other viewpoints, even if you don't agree with them.

    1. Word! I have loads of friends who post stuff I don't agree with and even stuff that is blatantly false ("Vaccines are dangerous for kids because they cause horns!") and I don't even argue with it. Live and let live, really. I was thinking a lot about Aaron from high school when I wrote this post. He was a conservative, gun-loving Republican but we were still really great friends. Didn't stop us from caring about each other. If your shallow definition of "friendship" means we can't be friends anymore because I don't agree with everything you say? You're a bully and I can't be friends with you!!! RIGHT?!?!?

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