At the beginning of each year, I have a few traditions that I like to start off with. One is a clean home, two is a clean fridge, a third (or will be this year) is to have taken down the Christmas decorations, ready for the New Year, and the fourth is a Facebook friends list cull.
For some people, deleting your friends seems a bit cold, but I don’t necessarily find that so. More friends don’t mean more popularity, and many of the people who know and like us don’t even have us on Facebook. How many people do you know and get on with, but don’t have on your Facebook friends list? I’ll bet there’s quite a few.
One of the things that I find is that throughout the year, new friends creep onto the list occasionally. By the end of the year, we’re left with a few people that we no longer hear from and, on any other occasion, wouldn’t have added in the first place. For that reason, here are the 13 (yep, because it’s sure unlucky for some!) types of friends that I remove.
Making use of ‘restricted’ lists
Facebook has the wonderful feature of the restricted list. What this allows us to do is to stay in touch with those people that we sort of have to stay in touch with (like our annoying-but-close cousin or our boss that we drunkenly added), but who we don’t want to know everything that we get up to. If they’re someone that I would otherwise block but sort of have to stay in touch with, they end up here.
- Boundary break-ups
It should go without say, but if a friend has crossed boundaries in some way then they absolutely do not get to stay. Saying mean things about me or my family, rude comments about my husband or our life together or hating on me for the (vet-approved) way that I keep, treat and train my dog. Anyone who judges you simply isn’t a friend. Get rid of them.
2. That distant cousin
Relatives that are close enough for your mother to know if you delete them may be one thing, but distant cousins that you have seen once in five years is another. At my father’s funeral, I made brief conversation with a distant cousin of mine and in the mourning process she wound up on my friends list. Alas, we haven’t spoken since.
3. It’s me or the dog
I get it, my dog is super cute and fluffy, but it’s not his Facebook feed, it’s mine. If I get the inkling that we’re only friends for the occasional pupdates on how Hugo is doing, guess who doesn’t get to stay? Unfriend me and follow his Facebook page like the rest. The fact we went to school together does not give you priority access.
4. Debbie or Darren Downer
Depression is a real, common and treatable condition, but if you’re only posts are to share with the world how miserable and down you’re feeling, we probably aren’t going to be friends for very long. I can be there to pull people up for a while, but if weeks and months have gone by and you still aren’t trying anything to feel better (other than looking for sympathy on Facebook), you’ll probably find your name quiet quickly on my block list.
I swear, political opinions do not belong on Facebook and I have been known to take a Facebook hiatus everytime there is a General Election. I get it, you think Jeremy Corbyn is a danger to society or Donald Trump should be impeached. You think everyone who voted for Brexit is a racist or that leaving was the best thing for the UK. Your opinions will not sway me, not even one teeny, tiny iota. I read the news from reputable centrist sources and I make up my own opinion, which I keep to myself because I have better things to do than argue about why you’re right and I’m wrong. If all you’re going to do is fill my news feed with political bias, it’s bye-bye time from me.
6. The super snooper
We haven’t met, we hardly speak but still somehow you made it to my friends list. I had one girl on my friend’s list who I am sure was spying on my relationship because she fancied her a piece of my man. That’s not cool and definitely not okay! If you’ve only added me to spy on me and I realise that we don’t actually interact, you’re going.
7. The narcissist
We get it, you got your brows done or your roots touched up, congrats. A cheeky selfie to show off a new look sits fine with me, but if it’s every damn day, get out of here. We don’t need to see photos of you having a good time to know that you’re having a good time. If you were really having a good time, you wouldn’t be posing for photos in the first place. I actually refused a photo with Matt recently for this reason. To me (and many others), if you were having that much of a good time, you wouldn’t have time to pose for photos. Enjoy it, and post a status about your exciting day afterwards, without the waiting-in-queue selfie.
8. The ex
I make it a golden rule not to stay in toucb with my ex-boyfriends. To me, it’s not helpful towards moving on with my life and suggests that I’m not really over them. One dumped me and the other completely fled the country without ever telling me. You don’t get to be in my virtual life after that.
9. The pity pal
I felt really awful adding this girl to my list of people to delete in 2020 but she’s not my friend, I just felt sorry for her because she has learning difficulties and I felt awful about saying to her face that I didn’t want to be her Facebook friend. We have absolutely nothing in common and have never spent a day together, but she made it to my friends list because I bumped into her once in the street and didn’t have the guts to say no to someone who clearly thought a lot of me. I have to be real to myself and honest with her. She’s married with kids now, so she’s doing just fine.
10. The ghost
We were one friends, but now we don’t really talk and neither of us are willing to make the move. In life, people change and the people we swore would be our BFF’s no longer are. That’s fine, no hard feelings, but if I’m not part of your life, you don’t need to be part of mine.
11. The sentimental mom
You share a photo of your newborn baby, and that’s really great, but then you reminisce every damn year about how much he’s grown and you reshare the memory for us all to see. Things happen in our lives that are worth sharing, and that’s great, celebrate them in the moment and move on. Your child doesn’t want you ripping out the baby photos at every birthday party, so why do it on Facebook? Time to go.
12. The health & beauty guru
If you have a page to promote a business that sells health and beauty products, fine, great, but I don’t need to follow it. If the only statuses you post on your personal page are to promote or sell the new merch that you’ve just got in, expect me to unfriend you pretty quickly.
13. The Farmville fanatic
Fortunately, Farmville is a dying craze but Odd Socks and Candy Crush are just as bad. Any games request, if the only contact we have is you sending me friggin’ games requests, nope, you’re gone. I’m far, far too busy for that nonsense.
Most of the people on my friends list (of the approximately 25 that will remain) are amazing people and add so much quality to my life. I live by the motto that the fewer friends we have, the better that we can focus on the ones who really matter. To my friends who will read this and remain on the list in 2020, thankyou for being amazing people!
So there we have it, the 13 types of Facebook friends who won’t be on my list next year. Over to you folks, how do you decide who gets to stay and who needs to leave?
Enjoy your Christmas eve!