My sister and I have been rebuilding a friendship after a falling out. Recently we've been talking more and connecting on Facebook. She is amazing and I love her! Lately I've noticed lots of "extreme" posts that shocked me. I can see where she is coming from, but it made me think that there is more about each other that we haven't shared. I posted a fact sheet contradicting a post she made that was blatant dogma. I didn't comment, just tried to suggest that maybe you should know the facts about major social issues you're broadcasting opinions about. Nothing happened. I asked a journalist friend and she said, "People always seem a lot more extreme, more than they really are, on Facebook. It's a platform designed to generate mass replication and not necessarily genuine views."
I think my friend is right, but still, how can I ignore the Jesus posts? It's worse than the most graphic horror films.
— Slightly Freaked Out
SLIGHTLY FREAKED OUT!
Your journalist friend summed it up pretty well, eh? For some people, facts don't inform opinions, rather, they view their opinions as facts. It sounds like that's what is going on with your sister. To her, you're the one who's wrong for contradicting her with your fact-checking post.
You can literally ignore her posts, by hiding them in your feed. True, you'll also be hiding her non-offensive posts, but if it keeps your blood pressure down and your relationship on track, it's worth it. When inspiration strikes, you can go to her page, see what she's up to, post a friendly "Howdy, Sis!" and get the hell out before you're subjected to more of what you don't like. Your Facebook feed is yours. You wouldn't fill it with posts from, say, Rush Limbaugh, so there's no need to be force-fed stuff you don't like by anyone, even family.
I spend a lot of time on social media, as does my friend. We're both funny people and I often "like" her posts on Facebook, but she never reciprocates. I wouldn't care except I know she sees them, so it seems like a deliberate "thing" for her to not like them.
I know it's silly. I teased her about it and then stopped because she just rolled her eyes and shrugged. What is the social etiquette here? Am I being too sensitive? Or is she just needing to be queen bee?
— All A-Twitter Over Likes
Gurrrlllll! I can tell I'll be citing my "Facebook makes us all 12, all the time" theory a lot here. Because it's true. I know you, and I know you're not 12, in age or maturity, yet look at how this has you, well, all a-twitter! (Great name, BTW. I'd totally "like" that on Facebook if I could.)
She's intimidated by you. It's written all over your un-liked Facebook wall and her rolling eyes. She likes the imbalance in the like-fest because it puts her above you in that aspect of your friendship. This assumes that her lack of likes is deliberate, which we can't know for sure. Does she "like" other people's posts? Does it matter?
It matters, I get it. Even though we know Facebook makes us all 12, we can't help it. It's human nature to want to be liked, and Facebook has taken that to a very literal level.
Are you being too sensitive? Yeah, I think so. That's cool though, you're totally not the only person to ever feel that way.
We're making the social etiquette up as we go along, because for every one of you, there's someone else who's all, "Dayum, back off stalker, why you liking every single thing I do on Facebook?!"
Go dark. Starve her out. If Facebook insists on making us all 12, then dammit, be 12. Pack up your likes and go home. Save your clicker finger for someone more appreciative.
Or not. Or, realize it's just Facebook and keep being your generous self, feeding her starving ego. Let her be 12 and let you keep being [age withheld].
I've been with my boyfriend for three years. We moved in together after three months. He's 33 and I'm 23, which hasn't been an issue until recently. He's ready to settle down and I'm not. I love him and our relationship is wonderful, but I'm not ready. How do I decide between staying with a man that cares deeply for me and feeling like I'll be stuck wondering what I'm missing?
— Feeling Rushed
You already answered your question. You're not ready. You can be in love with each other and be compatible in many other ways but if the timing isn't right that's kind of a huge deal breaker. If you're already predicting that you'll feel stuck — you'll probably feel stuck. And that's not fair to either of you. Your choices here are to either call it off and let him find someone with a more compatible timeline or ask him to respect yours and slow things down while you catch up to each other. Only you know which is right for you, but given your age and his, my gut tells me the former makes more sense. You have a lot of living to do, and it sounds like you know that. He probably does too.
defusing or clean up? Write firstname.lastname@example.org.