How I Got Away With(out) Facebook
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Health and Wellness

How I Got Away With(out) Facebook

Having resisted the popular social media website this long, is it finally time to cave?

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How I Got Away With(out) Facebook

Not having a Facebook account as a college student in 2015 is a pretty rare thing. Being able to access the internet and not have a Facebook account is an anomaly in its own right. Yet while it doesn't come up as often as you might think, word of my Facebookless-ness usually gets met with one of five versions of shock.

Here are the signs to look out for (and be warned: they usually come on in stages):

  1. First we have regular, run-of the mill shock, or surprise. This is the equivalent of: "Hey, Rachel. I was looking to friend you on Facebook last night but couldn't find your profile page." "Actually I don't have a Facebook." "Really?!" followed by quizzical look.
  2. Denial. The natural follow-up to surprise, it doesn't take having a Facebook to recognize how ingrained the social media platform has become in our society. It's become so commonplace that people simply assume that you have one, including most web-sites which, for convenience sake, allow you to sign in with a Facebook account. And 9 times out of 10 they're right to assume! The expectation of Facebook is so strong that, without the intention of calling me a liar (or at least I don't think so), "The lady doth protest too much..." is often the only conclusion people can come to that makes any sense. Perhaps I'm trying to let them down gently, avoiding the ugly awkwardness of denying internet 'friend'ship. That must be it! However if denial fails and it becomes clear I am actually telling the truth...
  3. Initial Verdict: Superiority Complex. I must think I am better than everyone else because I don't have a Facebook account, *evil laugh* Muah ha ha *evil laugh.* For some reason that answer doesn't always stick, though, and instead transitions into...
  4. Hipster (noun): "aperson,especiallyduringthe1950sand1960s,characterizedbya particularlystrongsenseofalienationfrommostestablishedsocial activitiesandrelationships;abeatnikorhippie." By that definition I'll admit my lifestyle is not without its hipster aspects--enjoyment of old records and any hatwear; purposeful lack of current technology like smartphones; appreciation of the retro. I wouldn't say I've ever strongly identified with the label. Or thought about the label at all, if I'm correctly grasping all of the minutiae of its meaning right. Outside of the occasional TV mention, where it's usually brought up in the extreme as the butt of a joke--look at that moustache sporting guy on the unicycle wearing a graphic tee!--hipster doesn't carry any meaning with me. I'm not trying to 'fight the man' by not having Facebook nor am I trying to conform to a certain 'subculture of cool.' It's just something I've never felt strongly about or wanted.
  5. And finally... well, no. Acceptance never really comes in the Facebook debate. The subject may be dropped, never to be brought up again, but the sentiment is always there--How? How have I avoided it this long? Why not just get one? Why keep fighting not to have one? What is really the point?

The point is there is no point. In my heart I realize my days of resistance may be numbered yet I continue to hesitate. Today alone I've gone to the site five times, staring down the "join" button yet unable to make that final click. It mostly comes down to disinterest. I recognize all of the great assets the site has to offer, especially as a writer with sights on getting her opinions read. In fact, as an outsider I probably don't even realize all of the features available at my disposal should I sign up for a free account. Having made it this long, however, without constant status updates and labeled photo posts and guilt from unwanted friend requests, I don't crave a change. I don't feel left out and I'm not curious. I like my privacy, am used to people forgetting my birthday, and should I ever need to get my thoughts out on the internet I have Twitter for that--the social media site for following celebrities and strangers who share your same love for canceled TV shows, in 140 characters or less (stay cool, "Veronica Mars"). Plus I've seen enough "Doctor Who"to know that anytime everyone has the same new product (or in this case is participating in the same social network) it must mean aliens are trying to destroy the planet. So I'm a little weary of that as well.

Practically, can I stay Facebookless forever? Probably not. But until the very last possible moment I decline to make the switch.

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