Though many people still don’t get “Social Media”, most everyone is in it, whether they know it or not (mostly) thanks to Facebook- even my Mother.
My Mother (along with many of her friends) discovered Facebook last year- and she was LOVING IT. Every day she found a new friend she hadn’t seen in 15+ years, and one by one they started organizing reunions, girls nights, get togethers- it was all gumdrops and rainbows- at first.
But as she became more active in the Facebook community, in addition to these friends she rarely got to see, she also was “friending” people she saw every day- her inner circle of friends- and after they declared their friendship to the Facebook world, something started to change.
In lieu of a phone call, she would get a wall message “How are the kids?”.
Instead of a get together, she would get a private message “How was your mother’s day?.
Soon all phone calls, lunches and real face to face interaction became less frequent and excuses of ” but I facebooked you” became more common place. Little by little these straws broke the camel’s back. So this week, all of us who are her Facebook friend saw this in our news stream.
“I will be going through my friends list and de-friending some people, if you are one of the chosen few PLEASE do not think of it as ending our friendship think of it as trying to SAVE it. We’re going back to PRE-Facebook days, Socialization..old school”
Now a few things took me back by this statement- A.) The fact that the word “defriended” has become an actual word – that even my mother is using. and B.) Socialization – Old School??…
BLASPHAMOUS. Does she know her daughter is a blogger- hello?? Social Media pumps through my veins.
But even I had to sit back and wonder, did she have a point?
Are we not only using social media, as a tool to keep in touch with those we don’t see all the time but to replace our every day interactions with our closest friends and family? If so, this is definitely not O.K. …. Though I must add it is however, A-OK with me to have replaced those annoying “Merry Christmas” mass text messages we’d all get every holiday. Which brings me to my next point- Is Facebook really to blame? or is this something that has been slowly simmering for years starting with emails and text messaging?
Facebook, Text messaging, Twitter- they are all social tools…. keyword being – TOOLS.
I know for me, I try to pick up the phone when I can, arrange more get togethers when I can… but I think the trouble behind it all- for everyone- not just me, is just that WHEN WE CAN. In 2010, it seems sometimes we are in a DeLorean moving at lightening speed, multi-tasking more than any generation before.
During last months EVO Conference, we spoke with the producers of the Oprah show about how many of us have become “Media Snackers” due to the fact that there is so much information being fed to us on a daily basis via the internet. Today more of us are just skimming for the bottom line to move on to the next. Especially, Moms – who have been professional multi-taskers for decades.
But my mother’s bold Facebook message made me wonder, are we doing the same with our friendships? Are some of our most valued friendships becoming just another media snack for us through out the day as we skim our Facebook newsfeed?
This is an original post for JerseyMomsBlog by Corine, aka Complicated Mama.