Being “Friends” on Facebook Doesn’t Mean We are!
Respect limits and boundaries, for god sake!
Imagine you met me at a conference eight or more years ago, where we spent five days together with approximately 30–40 other individuals. It’s been years since we’ve spoken, and out of the blue, I contacted you on Facebook to begin a discussion about your divorce that happened a couple of years ago. What would you do?
This just happened to me. I haven’t been through a divorce, though. It’s only a metaphor for an intimate thing that this person wanted me to disclose.
I can’t believe how entitled some people are and how bold they are in asking for it. I would never be so callous.
Even if we were close and it happened recently, I wouldn’t expect someone to talk about that intimate experience with me. And that’s what this person did: asked me if I would disclose something very personal to them.
But they posed the question in such a way to make themselves seem like the victim should I say no.
I’ve never had an experience like that before. It showed an astounding amount of entitlement and disrespect for boundaries! The lack of limits that people display these days is shocking to me!
The only thing I might try to do is put myself in their shoes and imagine what it would be like if they were asking about an intimate experience and how they’d feel if someone told them no.
I’m writing a book about that subject, which this individual is interested in. So that’s what I did: I explained to them that I was writing it and hoped that when they have the opportunity to read my book, they’ll understand how it felt for me.
What were they thinking? That I’d jump on a call and put myself in a vulnerable position with them, a stranger? That I would open deep wounds and be susceptible to them?
The way they asked indicates they only want to please their appetite for gossip—no concern for me, how I felt, nothing. I was only a source of information, not a person.
If we have “access” to each other on social media, it doesn’t make us friends. I am polite, and answering a text doesn’t mean answering all your questions.
I may even sympathize with you and be there for you if needed. But that doesn’t mean I would disclose personal information to you because we “know” each other on social media.
Anyways, I usually do not vent with my articles. Still, this experience was the last drop of a series of things today. I do not need to deal with this kind of entitlement and lack of personal boundaries from a stranger, especially today.
Vulnerability is best shared between close friends when the timing is appropriate. Privacy matters. It’s my life; it belongs to me, not someone who wants all the juicy gossip because they have nothing better to do with their lives.
How do you feel about boundaries? Do people in your life respect them? What are some friendly ways to say no without being mean these days? How would you have behaved if this had happened to you? Let me know by leaving a comment!