A Socially Anxious Person's Guide to Friend Request Etiquette

We live in a world filled with unspoken rules. Many of these rules have had time to establish themselves and be cemented and taught to further generations. On the other hand, some have not. Many of these unspoken rules are a need to know in order to function smoothly in society. With the rapid progression of technology; we as a community have to deal with many new and unexplored social do's and don't's. As someone who has a lot of social anxiety, I try to figure out these rules as quickly as I can in order to function correctly and avoid any unwanted mishaps. So I don't die. One of the newer and not quite decided set of rules I'm articulating, is that of sending friend requests. Being the over sharing know-it-all I am, I figured I'd share what I think (almost know) the rules are.

The basis of a friend request is that it should be sent if you have at least somewhat of a real life relationship with this person. Perhaps you met them recently, you had a nice conversation that held more than just common small talk, you've been to the same parties, or you've met them a long time ago and you just remembered they exist. A common mistake that people make is send friend requests to people they've hardly or never talked to in order to become friends. TALK TO THEM IN REAL LIFE IF YOU WANT TO GET TO KNOW THEM. If you send a friend request in order to get to know them, you will never get to know them. They will either accept the friend request and allow you to spy on them and they will never talk to you, let the request sit there leaving you to wonder if they even saw it at all, or (the worst) they decline.

Don't re-send a friend request if you've deleted them before. You burned that bridge sorry, bye.

Always wait at least four hours before accepting a friend request. It's the petty truth. There seems to be something rather eerie about an accepted friend request right after sending. I know it isn't likely that the other person is just camped out at their computer waiting for friend requests, they just happen to have had Facebook open. The reality being, they see relationships in the digital world in a more casual lens. But that casual lens is not in my artillery. So four hours or more it is.

On a slightly different note but one that still sort of relates, why does Instagram privacy exist? It basically creates a second friend request situation that only deals with photos. I'll be honest, sometimes I don't even attempt to follow a person with the privacy setting on because I have a fear of rejection and I don't want to allow the possibility. Just turn that setting off; the only thing your protecting is pictures of your food, sunsets, and your pet.

So in review: Friend requests come after real life interaction and not before, don't re-send friend requests or you might die, wait four hours or more when accepting friend requests, and turn off that useless privacy setting on Instagram. If you follow these rules, it will make life so much easier. For me.

Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.

More on Odyssey

Facebook Comments