Love it love it love it love it love it love it love it. CONGRATULATIONS! You know my story of social suicide on FB, and I still miss both it and Instagram… but my life feels better this way. I still waste time and get lonely, but there’s so much less self-loathing. Welcome to the other side! xoxo
What a perfect rendition of your thoughts and feelings. Brava!
This is so eerily me right now! Wow. Well done. Tangible stuff. Handwritten letters. Winter runs. Reality.
Thank you for this. Perhaps I’ll follow suit.
I too need ReAl Stuff, and not to worry about The Void’s opinions. I live in my head too, and I have the exact same thoughts you have (we are head neighbors!)
I love your comics. You can deal with any topic. And I LOVE that you are a runner now. Yay!
Much love from my head and heart,
So true. I keep thinking and thinking about doing it but have yet to pull the plug. The damn site just sucks me in and it’s totally ridiculous! Especially now that I’ve joined a couple mommy groups via facebook. Seriously, I need to spend more real time with people and more importantly, my son. I need cut the cord on FB and many of my interweb addictions for all of the very reasons you wrote about.
Marya- in the words of my wise friend Diane: Just do it. She also said this: you will feel weird at first, but then you won’t think about it. I have found this to be totally true for the most part. What helped in nudging the door for me was to know people who had never joined FB in the first place and were not only totally fine, but could not understand the issue. If you need to, give yourself a 90 day trial period. Quit for 90 days–shut down the account–you can always turn it back on easily in 90 days. You will most likely find that within a week you will feel the pull is a lot less.
Cecile- I LOVE the idea of “Head Neighbors”! Hi neighbor!!
Ariel- HIGH *FUCKING* FIVE!
Summer– as usual, you’ve spoken as a pioneer thinker for so many. Your ability as a cultural truth-sayer strikes again! For me, Facebook engenders guilt: guilt for spending time on it, guilt for the quick, fast-food feeling thrills it gives. I also feel guilty because I tend to use it only to publicize my art events and paintings, while others are doing more authentic sharing of friends, family, and so on. There’s a lot of pressure to be on Facebook all the time in the world of art marketing.
Really it feels like a slot machine in a casino with no windows, where you keep dropping in your life savings (your soul) hoping for the big payoff.
I just don’t really care that much about Facebook friending… as you say, there are real friends in real life who give the psyche real food and drink and warmth and love and laughs.
I sometimes have the feeling that the Interweb is in the early stages of human evolution. When we invented the big factories and textile mills of the early 1800s, they were hell holes of pollution, overwork, death, smog. It took us close to 200 years to alter this technology so that it was less harmful to humans– unions, pollution controls, the 6 day workweek, no child labor. The internet is new to human psyche. I’m no conspiracy theorist, but I think there’s a lot we don’t know yet about the internet and its effect on us. Perhaps in 20 years we will all be aghast at what we endured, the dangers from Facebook and Twitter to our wholeness and psyches.
I am reconsidering Facebook. I don’t like living a world of needless guilt. Suzanne
I love and relate to this SO much! I quit Twitter because it was like trying to yell into a crowd. At first it was fun to feel “connected” to some sort of snarky collective consciousness, but there were only a couple of people who ever directly interacted with me, and you were one of them! (Thank you!) I went through a few days of withdrawal after quitting, then I was over it. Recently I cut off Instagram too and haven’t missed that either – just more junk-food voyeurism to fuel my constant comparisonitis.
Now the final frontier…Facebook. I’m only connected to family members I didn’t know for 40 years and am truly grateful to be in touch with now, but they’re very attached to FB and there’s much resistance to shifting the connections beyond that medium. We’ve let ourselves become SO lazy about human interaction. My fear is that if I pull the plug on FB it will end those connections, period, and these are people I don’t want to lose touch with but don’t feel confident will make or return the effort otherwise. A silly website shouldn’t stand between having a relationship with someone or not, but that seems to be largely where we’re at society-wise, which is a shame. If anyone has experience with this sort of situation I’d love to hear any helpful navigation tips!
Also, I’ve been meaning to say this for weeks: When you originally announced you were going to quit blogging more traditionally I thought, “Damn, I’m really going to miss Summer’s insights and musings on life”, but your comics beautifully fill the same role and are such a delight to read. It was also great to see you on the Spreecast last night, though I was watching at work and somewhat distracted, so will have to review the recording later to catch what I missed.
Keep on rockin’ it, fellow head neighbor! 🙂
Hello Summer—I was just going to send you a message on FB today! I wanted to thank you again for the shout out last night regarding my art work. I was quite giddy with happiness and floated out of work. (-: I completely understand your decision to leave FB and have felt a similar state of let-down at seeing responses or rather non-responses on my feed (which really, I keep strictly for art postings). There is now doubt that social media can be draining and sometimes even devastating. Being someone who also lives deeply in my head and thought, I can create all sorts of scenarios that are not necessarily healthy. I liked best your perceptive comment that a virtual life does not equal a real life. So true.
Because this is on your public blog, I’m going to curtail the reasons why, but back in 2010/2011 I was at the lowest point in my life. I had told my mom at that time that all I wanted to do was read, write, draw, and bake. It was like a litany rolling over and over in my brain. It was at that time that I discovered your books one night which surfing on amazon. I found your voice and your drawings so inspiring (I immediately bought both of your books), and they brought a spark of hope back to me. When you had posted that they were going out of print, I had written something on your blog at that time about how much I loved them, but I hadn’t written fully about your “George Bailey-like” influence on my life. So thank you, Summer, for all the work you do, and I hope you continue to follow your voice in your work and as a directive in living a meaningful, real life. Wish I could be your pen pal via true mail. (-;
I almost long back for the early days of blogging where I took the time to read and comment and ENGAGE. Now it’s just a quick check and and a like on FB. The internet has definitely added to my sense of heady overwhelm and I’ve also been toying with the idea of dumping FB for good. It was a great way of reconnecting with some old friends but at the end of the day, if we do not reconnect in the “real” world then what is the point of sharing a few status updates? I don’t thing I want to give up blogging and I am sure glad you are keeping yours because I still love your insights and art. And if I don’t spend my time obsessively checking FB then I could stop and actually read and ingest a blog post again, instead of quickly scanning over it before liking it on FB. I may just follow suit 🙂 xo
There’s a lot I want to respond to here.
The number one thing that I want to say is: I am so happy this has struck a cord for people! Hooray & Thank You!
Number Two: quit Facebook. I’m not kidding. If you are having any kind of conflicted feelings about it, love/hate feelings, fearful/guilt feelings about quitting JUST QUIT.
Diane said this: You will feel weird at first and then forget it.
This is 100% true.
If you need to, tell your brain you are closing your account for 90 days. After 90 days if you still want to be on FB, you can always reactivate your account at no extra effort.
I will pose a question to any of you on the fence about it. It’s the same question I asked myself when it came to my blog and then it came to Facebook:
If you didn’t have Facebook, where would you put your social energies? Who would you reach out to personally? Who would you BE with?
I found this comic especially interesting because I have NEVER had a Facebook page. Now I don’t feel so defensive about my choice to not join the “hive mind.”
Part of what helped me quit was knowing several people who never joined in the first place and…(wait for it)…are doing just fine! You are part of that crew, Kim! High five!
Good for you Summer! I went to check in on you on FB today, and came here instead. I think we’ve touched on this subject over the year via email and such. I salute you for finding what was right for you. I’ve been reaching out via the phone, walking 1x a week with a friend instead of always alone [we are rural, so it takes a lot to get us rural types together!], and just partaking in comments with people I don’t know well on FB. I also read your post about your year of loss, but all the gains too, with family and such. Love to you and your family this season! xo
I meant to say- NOT partaking in comments…
So true – especially the bit about replying to phone messages on FB! Something for me to ponder I think!
This is amazing. Really. I couldn’t agree more. In fact, I’ve been doing my own ‘refraining’ for the same reasons. I only go on FB twice a week and I’m finding myself more inclined to ring people, to write little notes or to generally effort into actual human contact rather than an artificial sense of connectivity.
Congratulations! Very inspiring…
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