I'm currently on my way out, and I am deleting as many photos and personal information about myself that I can.
And it is really hard. And I'm struggling.
And I hate that I am struggling because it should seem like a no-brainer.
There are other ways to keep in touch: I can e-mail, I will still keep my Twitter account.
But I am conflicted with the reason WHY I feel the need to share everything. It's sort of a sickness, an obsession, and I am ready to admit that and be done with it.
I don't think that my Facebook usage is helping out my life at all.
Sure, it was nice to stay in touch with people from high school, college, or family members. I love to look at the pictures and keep track of what they are doing, what their kids are doing, etc. I admit it: I'm a Facebook troll. I love looking at other people's pictures.
But at what expense?
Well, first thing is that I have never been a good housekeeper. Anyone who has dropped by unexpectedly, or even "expectedly" could see that.
Does hanging out on Facebook help that problem? Not really.
And what good does it do my children when I have my nose in Facebook when they need me for something? It doesn't.
I felt sort of the same way about the television.
About six months ago, we got rid of cable.
It was SERIOUSLY radical for us. I mean, we LOVED cable, and I could have married the DVR.
What upset me the most was the price tag. During one month of particularly merry clicks of easy ordering of On-Demand new releases, I racked the bill up to almost $200.00.
We currently have Netflix on the Wii, and that is just fine with me. Netflix is about $11.00 a month for streaming only.
Although at times I am frustrated with the selection on Netflix, I must remind myself that it is only ELEVEN DOLLARS A MONTH. Which is basically a fast food meal price. Or a decent bottle of wine (or a **cough** box, in our case).
We also plugged the television cords back into the wall, and we get the local stations and PBS. And you know what? PBS has some really good shows. I've learned to enjoy what I have.
We have to be very intentional about what we watch now and I believe that to be a very good thing.
You know what I DON'T miss?
The kids begging for crap they see on commercials. I COULD insert a shockingly gross statistic about kids and commercials [here], but I don't really need to.
Anyone who has been around a three year old watching Nickelodeon for two seconds and must endure the "I WANT THAT TOY! I WANT THAT CEREAL!" knows my pain.
No, I haven't regretted canceling cable a single minute. I'm hoping that the lack of regret continues for the Facebook cancelation.
I am also thinking that the entire scene isn't terribly healthy. I am DEFINITELY not the pillar of health, and it the terms of emotional health, I feel at times I have been dealt the short stick.
Do I think that Facebook is helping with this?
Although I love to see what people are doing, a lot of what I see upsets me too. Dumbass comments, people fighting, people saying derogatory things about each other or about certain groups of people. It's not healthy for me, personally. I feel as if it is getting worse.
I also have been reading and hearing a lot of more seriously sinister things about Facebook, in general.
A friend of mine (who deleted her Facebook account recently) has a husband who works in the computer security business, by profession. In other words, he is a professional hacker. People in that line of business don't have a lot of respect for Facebook, because they can see ~firsthand~ that the whole privacy thing and lack of security is a joke.
The computer security contigent (or people who actually "know"), she tells me, have a plethora of derogatory terms for people addicted to Facebook, like "dead meat," or "monkeys."
Do I care what people think because I have been a fan of Facebook? Not really. But I know the source, and I trust the concerns about security. Because EVERYONE knows that Facebook isn't secure.
Here is a link to an article I looked about about Facebook security. It is a secondary article, and there is a link inside it to the first article. Both were very helpful in my decision. Here is another website worth checking out, but will probably scare the crap out of you and make you paranoid as hell.
Because of concerns, both my husband and I recently looked into the "active sessions" on our Facebook account. You can do this on your account, too. And I suggest you do. We were really disturbed to learn that there were logins within the last month on EACH of our accounts in states other than our own.
We promptly changed our passwords, but I am afraid that changing the passcodes really is not enough.
And I also recognize that, although we are SO careful about shredding our personal information and mail, we are incredibly lax about putting our most TREASURED personal information ~ information about our children ~ out on the internet.
Yes, my kids are adorable. And "yes," I really want to share that new jumpsuit Maggie is wearing and see the firing up of the "likes" that I receive. Because, really, she is freaking darling.
But do I even need to go talk about who ELSE likes those pictures? And the complete f-d up bastards online?
NO, I do not.
We are also telling people what we are doing, where we are going, intimate details and feelings, etc. It's a little messed up.
Wait, NO, actually, it is a LOT messed up. I wouldn't DREAM of putting a sign on my door that says, "HEY! Going on vacation for a week to Aruba!" But essentially, I would do the EXACT SAME THING on Facebook.
Yes, the facial recognition thing creeps me out. And the idea that things aren't really "private," even if you make your information available to "only friends."
And forget about deactivating your account, folks. The information is still there for people to view. Go HERE for a link to actually DELETE your Facebook account. That is what I am getting ready to do.
I am in the process of getting my pictures saved and my friends' emails. What annoys me is that the "real" emails of my friends aren't even on their Facebook informations anymore...it is only a link to a Facebook email, which goes into "Messages." Obnoxious, non?
I am just trying to revert to living a simpler life. I think that my kids need me. They need me to demonstrate how to live a healthy, balanced life. They need me to keep them safe, and to love them.
Dumping Facebook will certainly be start to all of this.