What 372 Days Without Facebook Feels Like

Photo by  Andrew Spencer  on  Unsplash

Photo by Andrew Spencer on Unsplash

I never realized what Facebook took from me until I let it go. Until I followed the protocol to take back my life from the clutches of the devil. The devil that promised to connect us, to enhance us, to empower us. But time and time again, all they did was take from us. Our information, our back data, our preferences. They stole us from us.

It was hard, at first, to summon the courage to opt out.

Worry about my friends. My following. My digital landscape. Haha, what an idiot I was. To worry about losing something that I willingly handed over to be given out like popsicles at a summer baseball game to any company looking to target me.

Facebook isn’t real. It’s not your life. It’s a fictional embodiment of what you want your life to be. Or is it? Do you really want your life to be just your “best self” all the time? Is your life tied up in how slick your Facebook ad targeting is? I hope not.

Finally, I realized I wouldn’t be losing anything if I deleted Facebook. Because Facebook wasn’t anything more than a colossal time suck. A platform for me to tell everyone what I did that day. Or what my #goals were for next year. It was connecting me to the people I already knew but chose to leave in the past. Genius.

So, I pulled the plug.

That was 372 days ago.

What 372 Days Without Facebook Feels Like

It feels quieter.

I’m not getting updates on your oft misguided political schadenfreude. I’m not scrolling through endless technological hypocrisy. I’m not getting alerts because I liked a pic of your wedding and now I really need to know every time someone comments on the same f*cking photo. Now I hate your wedding. Sorry.

Also, your baby is really cute and all, but I don’t miss the updates on how she rolled over today. I know that’s exciting for you, but she also sh*t her diapers eleven times. It’s just baby games. And I don’t need to see the statistics from all of them. Just send me a holiday card.

It feels safer.

My life is spread all over the Internet thanks to the fact that I don’t like shopping in the real world and because of Google, but without Facebook, it feels safer. I don’t feel like someone is nice to my face and then stabbing me in the back every other second of the day.

I feel a burst of joy when a site asks me to log in with Facebook (because it’s easier 🙄) and I can’t. Even if I wanted to put my information into that Russian bot farm hijacking my sign in on a quiz game, I can’t.

It feels better.

It is life. It feels better not participating in the insincerity of the platform. Sure, a few of my friends were sincere, but the foundation of Facebook was not. We were throwing our most cherished memories onto a site that was taking them to manipulate us with them.

Facebook can’t take anything from me now. It can’t bother me with a new feature. Or surprise me with yet another data breach. It can’t sell me on connecting the world. It can’t do sh*t to me. And it feels better.


The Best Part of Life Without Facebook

No friend requests.

Not from the person you met in line at the supermarket. Not from the ex-girlfriend from graduate school. Not from the kid in third grade who told you Santa was bullsh*t (not accepting apologies for that by the way). Not from the person who is sure they can help your business grow to astronomical heights in just one week.

Nothing. No incoming platitudes. No, “I know you don’t me, but…” Nothing like that. Getting no friend requests is liberating. It’s not like getting a follower on Instagram or Twitter. Facebook friend requests reside on a different level. One that makes you feel obligated. And I don’t miss feeling obligated to accept.

What I Miss About Facebook

Nothing.

Even on the rare occasion when I saw an update that made me happy, that joy was continually outweighed by the deluge of trash sent my way. Trash that I signed up for via an online friendship or trash that was being directed at me because of ad dollars. So, no, I’m good. I don’t miss you. I won’t miss you.

Do you really want to know what 372 days without Facebook feels like?

Pure. F*cking. Joy.