Why I Had To “Ignore” My Mother On Facebook!
I’m sure the younger generation has gone through this one but I’m a forty-something gay for Chrissakes and the last person I thought I’d see trying to “friend” me on Facebook was my mother. Now my Mother and I are as co-dependent as they come, we speak every day (after all, I’m a nice Jewish boy) but I’m not sure I want her to see everyone “poking” me, writing on “my wall”, hitting me with a “snowball”, sending me a drink, talisman or anything else that the other seven thousand applications offer you to send and generally annoy your so-called friends. All of the above reasons and more are why I had to “ignore” my Mother on Facebook! – Don’t Get Me Started!
When I first opened my Facebook page of requests I was shocked to see the face that I’ve had memorized since birth appearing right in front of me. You see, a dear friend of mine described the Facebook inbox to me this way, “It’s Purgatory.” When friend requests are in the inbox they’re not accepted or ignored, they’re in limbo and as this friend stated, “It makes you feel popular seeing all these people who want to be your friend so leave them in the inbox” and choose wisely, Grasshopper. But on this particular day to open my inbox and see that not only was my mother on Facebook but that she had uploaded a picture was a bit unnerving to say the least. You need to understand that although my brother is the VP of IT for a major company, I’m the one who continually gets the call when she can’t get online to play Sudoku or something so I don’t know if I was more shocked that she had managed to figure out how to sign up or that she had gone that extra mile and added a photo (well, we all are over achievers in my family). In any case my somewhat mixed feelings quickly gave way to guilt, frustration and worry (all things good Jewish boys are supposed to have, especially when dealing with their mothers).
After the first shock of it all my thoughts began to go to what I can only assume a killer’s mind would do. (Well, from what I’ve seen in movies, anyway) I could hear the crescendo of music as I looked right and left all the while my mind going faster than any law should allow, “Click, click, click” as my mind raced from thought to thought. I thought, “Should I leave her in my inbox?” (Put your mother in purgatory? What kind of a nice son would do that?) “Should I hit ignore and then if she asks make some excuse that I hit a wrong button” (this option would only buy me time not solve the issue) “Should I hit ‘ignore’ and then quickly cover my tracks acting as if it never happened at all and I had never seen her face staring at me from my inbox if she should ask? I looked at that photo staring up at me again, almost assuredly saying, ‘Nice, you ignore your mother, that’s a nice thing to do to a person who raised you and gave you everything including those blue platform shoes you had to have when you were seven? Nice son, yes?’” The pressure became too much and in the end I went with the honesty is the best policy idea.
The next time I saw my mother I told her that I would not be “friending” her on Facebook. At which point she told me she had no idea what it was or why she even got on it but now she had a bunch of Jewish people who wanted to be her “friend” and she didn’t want to be “friends” with them. Yes, it took some explaining for her to understand that these people were not simply waiting for her to join Facebook but that they were suggestions made from her address book, etc. A suggestion, you know like, “Don’t shit where you eat.” Eventually she got it and decided that the whole Facebook thing was not for her but not until she told me what every person she had managed to “friend” and who had accepted had written for the last week. “You know John? He put on something about Robert. You know Robert is his lover, right? Well, his mother didn’t know for years. None of us did.” And so it went on and on.
When I first joined Facebook I was all over it. I loved re-connecting with high school friends in a strictly online way. It was a way to be sociable and popular without the need to get out of your dirty sweats or actually talk to them on the phone. They posted pictures I hadn’t seen in years (or ever remember being in, is that Alzheimer’s setting in?) and although the years were kind to some but not to others, the strange thing was that when I looked at them they looked the same as they did in high school. Was it my eyes playing tricks or simply my mind seeing them as they were when I knew them and not allowing the intervening years to intervene? With only talking to them online it was easy to keep them frozen in time and I was comforted by it. I couldn’t do that with my mother who I see every Sunday for dinner and talk to on the phone every day. She would never be frozen and in a short time she would be friends with all my high school friends too (because who could resist having my mother as their “friend”). She would ask them personal questions on the wall to wall feature and in time it would be more embarrassing than that time when…wait…I’m not ready to share that but suffice to say that for all these reasons, that’s why I had to “ignore” my Mother on Facebook! – Don’t Get Me Started!
Read More Scott @ www.somelikeitscott.com
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