The necessity of the Facebook breakup

SHIRA FENYES
News Writer

As that dreadful day approaches, you find yourself flipping through old pictures, archived text messages and stale memories.

While your friends are finalizing dinner reservations and spending frivolously on heart-shaped knick-knacks and overpriced Hallmark cards, you’re sitting at your computer, clicking through your ex’s Facebook album. You wish your love life would pick itself up off the ground.

The bleak reality? It won’t.

While you sit and stare, you find yourself turning down offers, rejecting pick up lines and dreading Feb. 14. Tagged photos of smiling faces get in the way of creating new memories.

Can we ever move past nostalgia while it is constantly sneaking into our Facebook news feeds?

“Networks are so interconnected, especially now that we have Facebook to map them, that even if you try to get rid of someone, it just doesn’t work,” said Ben*, a University of Western Ontario alumnus.

According to YourTango.com, a love and relationships website, 57 per cent of people think they need to remove their ex from Facebook to move on — effectively breaking up a second time.

Past relationships can leave unwanted residue on the dating scene. According to YourTango, 71 per cent of people feel they think about their ex too much and 57 per cent of singles believe old love inhibits a new spark.

While Facebook can be a perfect dating resource, its novelty wears off post-break up. Watching your ex’s wall posts show up on the news feed can perpetually stimulate your depression.

“I don’t want to see my ex writing on other guys’ walls, especially if I’m not over her,” said David*, a third-year geology student at McGill University.

Despite a breakup, most freshly single individuals continue to keep the line of communication open, creeping their ex’s profile on a frequent basis.

“No, I haven’t deleted him,” said Charlotte*, a University of Saskatchewan fourth year English student, “but I have blocked his appearance on my news feed.”

She described Facebook as a perfect way to “heighten paranoia and lower self-esteem.”

The online mega-network is a constant reminder of our inability to disconnect, bringing a whole new meaning to the breakup.

“I think that Facebook enables and even encourages people to fixate on others, rather than focusing on their own lives,” said Breanne*, a second-year student at the U of S.

According to YourTango, 59 per cent of people remain Facebook friends with their exes and 48 per cent report checking their exes’ profiles too often.

So, how can we emerge from relationship purgatory? YourTango has declared Feb. 13 “National Break Up with Your Ex Day.” The site suggests cutting all communicative ties before Valentines Day.

After all, two break ups might be an inevitability.

If you find your ex plaguing your love life, make the big step: break up with him one last time.

*Names have been changed due to the personal nature of these students’ comments.

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image: Danielle Siemens