On Social Media

I find it disturbing that someone could let social media control their life to the point where it becomes so intolerable for them that they feel compelled to delete their entire profile and all of their content. But I just saw it happen to somebody whom I had regarded as a good friend.

Google+ and other social media sites are tools. Used carefully and correctly, they can help you to build rewarding, meaningful relationships with real people, even though you are participating in a "virtual" world.

Used improperly, they can make your life completely miserable and make you feel powerless to control your life and your destiny. When you have reached the point where you feel compelled to delete yourself and your online presence, you aren't just getting rid of the "bad" - you're throwing away all the good, too.  In other words, you may have sequestered yourself, but that doesn’t solve your problem, because all the personal issues that caused you to take this drastic action are still there. Fix your issues first, and such sequestration may become unnecessary.

People used to do this before social media were invented. It's called suicide. When it happens in the virtual reality of social media, the person is bound to eventually come back under a different name. But it's still the same person, who will make the same or very similar mistakes and react in the same way to others. I have difficulty respecting anyone who isn't honest enough to end one relationship before starting another, either online or off. There could be exceptions, but they are few. When  people abuse and misuse social media, it's not social media's fault.

Here's the thing... if someone has allowed social media to take over their life to such a degree that they feel they have no other recourse but to remove themselves completely from it, there are bigger problems to contend with in that person's mental and emotional state. Simply deleting the information and accounts isn't going to solve those issues. Removing oneself from Google+ (or whatever) doesn't solve the inherent personality issue(s) that got you into trouble in the first place. It may lessen the pain, but it's more like throwing the baby out with the bath water.

By the way, even though you cannot reach out and touch a person in your Google+ circles or Facebook friends, your relationship with that person is 100% real and carries all the emotional dangers of a relationship that exists in real life. And that includes the possibility of being wounded.

How to Have a Real Life On Google+ If You're A Married Woman
(And want to stay married)

1. Do not make posts with any kind of underlying snark or sexual innuendo. That is simply asking for trouble.
2. When approached by a man inappropriately, immediately tell him you are married and not looking for a relationship outside of marriage.
3. If a man should not "get the message" and clean up his act, BLOCK HIM and move on. Do not dally around. 
Google+ is a wonderful tool for building happy, rewarding interpersonal relationships and friendships when used properly. It is also a wonderful tool for quickly destroying otherwise perfectly good marriages.

The choice is yours.