Let’s Face It: Getting De-Liked Is Abandonment

Filed under: Blogging, Daily Life, Facebook

Yesterday, after I posted my self-indulgent and epic-length rant about how much I despise our ex-pediatric-allergist, a grandfatherly gentleman named George who is a fan of my Facebook page (but may not be now) made a ‘critical’ comment about the post, which he called an article:

Picture 17

The weird thing about comments is that I might get 15 or 50 positive comments, which is fantastic, but it’s the one negative comment that stabs me in the soul, George.

Picture 18The same thing goes for Likes. As of today, whopping 2,059 people actually Like my page (astounding!). You would think I spend my free time being grateful (and I do) but the other day I lost a customer. A Momalog reader left me, someone actually went to the trouble of De-Liking me, because of something I said or didn’t say. So instead of sitting here thinking about how wonderful it is that so many people stick around on my little page, George, I spend time worrying that people will abandon me and wondering why that one fan left my page.

It’s tricky, George. You see, I have low self-esteem. I’m sure you don’t want to hear about it because you’re from my parents’ generation but to counter the low self esteem, I need lots of propping up. Little slights get to me. People De-Liking me get my attention. I don’t just let stuff roll off my back like my husband would (he’s a salesman, George) – I let it bother me. I think: What did I do? What didn’t I do? Was it my excitement about the Royal Baby that drove them off? Is it because I don’t post aw-shucks pics of cute puppies and babies? Did I make some kind of spelling error? Is it the gay rights thing? Am I boring? Am I too old? Is it all the Ella quotes? Is it because I don’t like Honey Boo-Boo? Is it because I breast-fed my kids too long and occasionally post news items about breastfeeding moms being shamed into covering up? Am I too yuppie? Do I talk about Alanon too much? WHAT IS IT???

pricetagOr God forbid – could I have lost that one customer because you can still see the price tag sticking to my sunglasses on my new profile photo (which I didn’t discover until after I had posted the photo because I was so busy imagining that I look like an updated Jackie O.?)?

It could be any number of things. But who knows? Thanks to Mr. Zuckerberg, Facebook doesn’t even let you know who it was who De-Liked and Abandoned you so I’ll never even know who De-Liked me. I will only be able to Feel The Horrid Pin-Prick of Abandonment. I try to remind myself that each time someone De-Likes me (and there might be as many as 3 De-Likers per week! – but I prefer to call them ‘Abandoners’) it is actually a good thing, because what parent wants to be judged by people they have nothing in common with? I think to myself: Go ahead, leave my page if you don’t like me, I’m jiggy with it. (That’s an 80s saying, George.) So in truth, De-liking serves a purpose: it whittles down my fanbase to consist of just those people who are a.) too lazy to figure out how to leave the page, b.) neutral-to-meh about me, or c.) may actually like me.

I’m not sure how much you know me, George, but I have a thing for older people (not that you’re old – just grandfatherly) and I’m really happy to know that you took the time to comment on my page. I’m really sorry that I offended you with my profane vocabulary. And you’re right, I was a poor example to my children. The thing is, George – and you may not sympathize with this because you’re from a different generation than I – is that the reason I have this blog is so I can tell the truth about mothering.

My tagline, George, in case you don’t know – is: Good enough parenting, one day at a time.My parenting can be crappy, shocking, and disappointing no matter how much I would like to think otherwise and no matter how hard I try. Sometimes, despite all I’ve done to improve myself (my parents were both alcoholics, George – I don’t drink, spent over $50,000 on therapy, and sat in hundreds if not thousands of Alanon meetings, blah-blah-blah) I can actually feel myself physically handing down the baton of familial dysfunction to my progeny, oh yes I can.

So yeah, I was a cruddy example for my kids yesterday – I was immature. I gave Dr. Dung the Stink Eye and encouraged my 8-year-old to use the iPhone while he was goose stepping over me;  I bad-mouthed him behind his back to my children during that awful film about dust mites until they nearly wet their pants laughing; in front of them, I raised my voice to him (of that, I’m sorry to tell you, George – I am proud). So I repeat: I am not perfect. The thing is I feel stifled by all the momperfection I see around me these days – moms who homeschool, moms who can do Algebra or fold the laundry (I can’t, George), moms who always have a blow-dry, moms who have sex with their husbands all the time, moms who eat all-organic, moms who don’t chargill everything accidentally like I do, moms who are thin, moms who have taught their kid a third language and/or Mandarin “just because”, moms who don’t just sit on the sidelines like I do, George, moms actually run marathons alongside their children. 

My children are 8 and 11 and I’m still working on making them flush after they go, George. It’s a goal of mine.

I’m in the Washington D.C. metro area so you can imagine the perfection all around me, the achievement. It’s hard for a parent to keep up without losing their marbles. For example, I enrolled my kids in gymnastics so they could learn to do a cartwheel but found myself surrounded by Tiger parents of four-year-old gymnasts who are gunning for the Olympics. You can’t just be average here, George – you have to be the best. I put my kids in summer swim team but they’re surrounded by kids who are in the junior fucking Olympics, George. Sorry for my profanity, again, but you just can’t get away from the achievement culture around here. So to counter it, to slice through the artifice of perfection and achievement many parents tries so hard to project, I’ve decided to tell the truth about my own parenting.

Right here on this little blog.

For example: even though I’m a stay-at-home-mom, sometimes I’m so bone-tired and bored from just being at the mercy of my kids all day that I occasionally feed them Subway for dinner. It does nothing for them nutritionally, and I even let them have the white Italian bread. They don’t even sleep in pajamas – just t-shirts, and I’m still the one who has to clean the hamster cage which is why it stinks.

And yes, I was a crummy role model for my kids yesterday and I’m embarrassed about it. Yes, I wrote about it, but do you know why? Because all of us are crappy parents sometimes. No one’s perfect (I mean, look at where Martha Stewart’s perfection got her!). It’s only some of us who can admit that we are, at times, completely dropping the parenting ball. And when  parents who are brave enough to admit their flaws tell the truth, it inspires other less-than-perfect parents to come out of hiding and tell their stories, too. We forge a little community, which is what we need more of these days George. Community like I’ll bet you had in your day.

And about my swearing: you are right, the language was terrible. I’ll try to clean it up. Mostly I do not swear in front of my kids. They think ‘darn’ is a bad word. Of course, this makes me a hypocritical parent, because I swear in front of my husband and my girlfriends but will not allow my children to swear. At least I do know it’s bad to sprinkle the f-word in my article-posts and for that, I am sorry. Because it is a very bad word. Anyway, I don’t know if you’re still even my Facebook fan or if you’re ever going to come back and read this  article-post, but I did want to tell you this stuff, George, because you were right.


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19 Responses | TrackBack URL | Comments Feed

  1. I get people abandoning my Facebook page all the time!
    At first, I would obsess over what I did or didn’t do. Do I share too many blog posts? (twice a week) Do I bore people with my semi-witty (or so I think ) status updates about what crumb I found in my pocket this week? Do I make them feel like shit because they’re dieting and I just posted a picture of freshly-baked muffins? Do they just find me annoying?
    Who knows?
    Who cares?
    I did.
    I don’t anymore.
    One reason: Facebook ‘marks you down’ when you get people who hide your news feed. It’s better if they just unliked your Page versus hide what you share.
    So unlike away, Abandoners!
    I think George is an old stick in the mud. Sorry George. This is my friend you’re insulting!
    Twitter: AlisonSWLee



    • Oh jeez I had no idea FB has a “marking system” – oh no oh no! (-:



  2. Let’s Face It: Getting De-Liked is Abandonment – #facebook #blogging



  3. When I first started blogging x-years ago, during a chat with Neil Kramer, Neil threw out how people get bored with each other, especially in the blogging world, and just stop coming around. People who you think will be in your life forever will simply disappear: out of boredom, after a conflict, because of a misunderstanding. I told Neil “never!” I laughed how he had no idea what he was talking about. X-years later, I’ve lost count of how many blogging/Internet friends I’d thought would be in my life forever who are now off doing other things without me. It’s just life, nothing more. My abandonment issues are probably as problematic as yours, so it’s weird that I’ve come to this conclusion, but I just can’t worry about such things anymore. One day, I’ll stop eating my feelings about it and write a blog post about it as you have done. Heh.
    Twitter: freefringes



    • Thanks for that comment Erica.
      PS: I totally get it. (-: xo



  4. “The reason I have this blog is so I can tell the truth about mothering” – amen.
    Twitter: helenjabbott



  5. I’ve de-liked on FB because my feed was too clogged. And then I felt horrifically guilty about it. Silly, but see, your reaction is EXACTLY why I felt guilty! :)
    Twitter: normalmomally



  6. I can relate to every word of this post (thanks for writing it). I obsess over the negative on my blog (or social media) at times even though most comments are positive. Then I kick myself on top of it for letting that one person/comment ruin all of the good feelings I got from the mostly positive responses. Talk about beating myself up left and right! I am terrible at keeping track of likes and dislikes. If I don’t write the number down I totally forget how many I had to begin with. I am actually glad that I am somewhat oblivious. Although, just to torture myself I recently signed up for this unfollow thing on twitter so now I know who unfollows me. It’s not better than not knowing. Sometimes I think it is worse. There have been people I thought of as friends who have unfollowed me. I can laugh about it some days and other days it makes me sad. Online friends are different from real life friends because they can just disappear. It’s strange to be so close for a while and then to basically be strangers.

    For the part on parenting…I am with you. I can barely keep up with being average. It’s terrible that everything is a competition now and nothing can be done just for the fun of it. I really feel the lack of support. I put my daughter into a little school for just a couple of hours a day 3-4 days a week because everyone was telling me how terrible I was to keep her home and that she needed to be with kids. As soon as I put her in school I got slammed by another group of people for not keeping her home. I mostly let it roll off my back, but there are days when it really bothers me. I know how you feel! There are also doctors and moments that deserve a few swears. Sometimes we have to stand up to people and maybe we do it badly, but at least we do it and that is what is more important. Imperfection should be tolerated and embraced. We are mothers, but we are still human. We aren’t perfect. We can pretend to be, but what good does that do? At the same time I feel so much pressure to be perfect in ways that aren’t even possible because someone will always find fault and offer criticism. It’s a losing battle. I’m just glad there are blogs like this one and people like you to remind me that I am not alone!
    Twitter: ItsADomeLife



    • I love that and am going to quote you Lily: “I can barely keep up with being average.”
      I want that printed on a t-shirt! (-;
      Thanks for commenting.



  7. Well, I liked what you had to say. I related to it. I liked your tone. And we love you for it – swear away. If that’s who you are IRL, that makes you authentic.

    Twitter: Mama_AndTheCity



  8. Technology is beating me again. I can’t tell if I managed to Like this post on FB, but because I liked it so much, I am now writing to make sure you know!

    Also — love the design of your blog.
    Twitter: heronsister



    • Thanks! Swank Web Design did the design for me. (-:



  9. […] post Growing Up With Alcoholic Parents: 10 Surprisingly Good Things appeared first on Momalog. Let’s Face It: Getting De-Liked Is Abandonment Yesterday, after I posted my self-indulgent and epic-length rant about how much I despise our […]



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  11. Hello there! Do you use Twitter? I’d like to follow you if that would be ok.
    I’m absolutely enjoying your blog and look forward to new posts.



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