No emotional baggage allowed: why the depths of personal despair have no place on Facebook

After Google, it seems safe to say that Facebook has been the biggest net sensation of the 21st century. A social sphere in which to share thoughts, photos and gentle abuse, it has become increasingly apparent to me that the light hearted nature in which the site was intended is somewhat slipping away. Whilst the vast majority of people use it for these purposes, a rising number seem to be using it to air sentiments of depression and general doom and gloom.

Perhaps I’m being cruel when I say that these angst-ridden teens should keep their thoughts to themselves, but it seems perfectly ludicrous to me that they deem a social networking site to be the appropriate forum in which to voice their dissatisfaction with the world. It is certainly true, to some extent, that Facebook encourages this probing into the Pandora’s box of pent-up feelings. The seemingly innocuous ‘What’s on your mind?’ that appears on each user’s homepage is becoming a hot-bed for youth anguish, and consequently peppering our news feeds with miserable musings better suited to one’s personal diary.

It does beg the question, I suppose, of what is suitable to share with one’s online circle. Maybe I’m a simpleton for believing that Facebook witterings should be kept light and amusing. Or maybe I have a sense of what is appropriate. I (very) occasionally update my status if something noteworthy has happened, or if someone has said something particularly comical. In my own, personal opinion, this is what the site should be used for, and not sentimental song lyrics or bitter tirades against jilted exes.

Some people may be wondering why I appear to have such a huge number of overly emotional friends, and in all honesty, I can say that I don’t. What I do have, however, are people who are little more than acquaintances requesting my friendship on Facebook, only to clog my ‘most recent’ feed with their incessant glum proclamations. Harsh as I am, I feel that deleting people from the site who haven’t really wronged you is both churlish and mean, so whilst I remain friends with them (in a solely online capacity, of course), I feel that it is only fair that I can now use their misery to rant about in my brand spanking new blog-space. Sorry you feel shit, guys. But thanks for the material.

I know that statuses are sometimes shared in order to gain a little bit of sympathy, and I’d be lying if I said I’d never done that myself. Where I draw the line, however, is in creating an online pity party. I may have expressed a few words to the Facebook world when I broke my ankle on Christmas eve, or when I dropped my iPhone down the toilet, but at least I try to make light of these unfortunate situations rather than bringing everyone around me into a funk too. I’m sure that this post seems overly callous and that I am devoid of sympathy for the suffering of my peers, but this honestly is not the case. I just think that statuses reading ‘I just need someone to hug me’ and the like do not have a place on something that is essentially a means of mundane chatter. Bring back the ridiculous LMAO and ROFL if you must, but keep your emotional rants and ravings to yourself. I, for one, am not interested.

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