Facebook break-ups are anything but personal

Catherine Palmer, Centurion Staff

Keying cars, slashing tires, cutting up pictures, throwing away keepsakes and doing just about anything you can possibly think of to pause the pain you feel after a break up is the normal reaction to have when a broken heart lies cold in your chest.

For Lauren Gural, 22, film major at Temple, none of the above was exemplified, but she had a better idea in mind. “I so deleted him from Facebook. It’s how I know he’ll get the hint that I’m done.”

And so the problem begins.

Facebook, which was launched in the winter of 2004, and has ever since swept the entire world off its feet, is no doubt the number one frequently visited website in the country.

With 845 million active members, Facebook has become the focus point of just about every person through out every age group. Originally created for college kids, a whopping eight years later it found itself in nursing homes. Everybody who is anybody has a Facebook page.

Why get someone’s number when you can just add he or she on Facebook? Why have a face-to-face conversation about something personal when you can message it through Facebook? Why be excited to hear the news of an engagement or a baby on the way when you can read it in a post that one million other people you don’t even know will mostly like read before you?

“Why? Because it’s Facebook,” says Gural, whose bright green eyes darken to a soft gray at the mentioning of her break up. “Everyone I know has Facebook and I know that if I delete him first they’ll all see it, and they’ll know that I was the one who ended it.”

Although a 2006 issue of The New York Times praised Facebook creators for “bringing together broken families,” and “strengthening old bonds,” sometimes the past is meant to be left in the past and not to be looked up and added as a friend.

“I think it’s pretty sad to live in a world where technology is favored over face to face conversations and personal phone calls. I think Facebook ruined people,” said nursing major Shelby Cucinotta, 20.

“I found out at that my sister was in jail over Facebook, and so did my mom. I could here her crying from down in my basement. She told me to go on Facebook and the first thing I see is a post my brother made about my sister. It’s just ridiculous.”

Ridiculous? Yes, with out a doubt, but uncommon? Not a chance. One of the reasons Facebook is so popular is because people who wouldn’t normally speak their mind, can, and ultimately do.

“It ruins relationships of all kinds,” said music major Lauren Rook, 20. “At first it was pretty neat to see what everyone was up to, then it just got crazy. I had people I didn’t even know starting drama with me. I deactivated my count at least three times this year.”

But, Facebook like most addictions is a hard habit to kick. “I reactivated my account because I was too nosy,” said Rook. “I wanted to know what was going on in the world, and sadly Facebook is the world.”

When a 2011 issue of The Los Angeles Times reported that one third of European marriages were ending due to Facebook, I don’t think anyone was shocked.

“That doesn’t surprise me at all. Facebook was created so people could reconnect, and there’s reconnecting in good ways but there’s also reconnecting in bad ways,” said Rook.

50 years ago if a marriage was on the rocks the husband and wife felt forced to work at it. Not saying that forcing yourself to be with someone is right, but when most people marry they should marry with the intention to work at it out of love and respect, not just to log onto Facebook and add an old flame in case it doesn’t work out.

Amidst all the bad Facebook has recently been bringing to our society, it does bring good. Long lost family members, long lost friends, catching up and simply a place to leave your own world and linger in someone else’s, but does the little good it does make up for the bad?

Lying, cheating, divorce, not getting accepted to colleges, unnecessary picture posting, unnecessary posts in general, finding out about not only what goes on in the lives of people but about what goes on in their secret lives, all become an obsession due to Facebook.

When a 2010 issue of People Magazine released that the last words of Tyler Clementi, 18, Rutgers College student came from a Facebook post,  it was then that the world really got the chance to see what a simple Facebook post can really do: Destroy lives.