I posted the text below to my Facebook account yesterday. I don’t think it requires any more comment from me but I thought you might like to read it.
This long status update is by way of goodbye.
I have decided to (at least temporarily) close my Facebook account. I’m also not going to be tweeting or using LinkedIn.
I will be posting to my blog.
My social media activity has had two core purposes over the last 18 months. The first was to help me find a full time job. The second was an attempt to find people who would help me through major depression by standing next to me and connecting with me.
It totally failed in both objectives. What follows is not a criticism of you in particular but a criticism of social media and the social constructs it builds.
I found my new job through Seek (thought one friend did point me towards it after I had seen it). This despite a few attempts to leverage my social graph to find work.
Then there is the social and human contact I have been craving and asking for online over the past 18 months. During that time almost all of you have posted something “reassuring” or “positive” when I am posting how bad I feel. You all seem to be listening, though you do not hear. When I have asked for help I get platitudes and when I ask for social contact outside Facebook I get almost total silence. Of course repeated failure just increases my loneliness and makes it harder to try again. I have felt unappreciated, friendless, useless, unlikeable and fundamentally flawed because of my total failure to have social connections in the real world.
I also feel that there are people here on Facebook who do actually care about me but the downside of the online world is that they see the contact we have here as sufficient to know that I am alive and not much changed – they then don’t make any other contact such as give me a phone call or arrange to meet for a coffee. Unfortunately the emptiness of Facebook relations/contacts does nothing to lift the loneliness and lousy self-esteem of major depression.
I’ve tried both an honesty about how bad I have been feeling and appearing to be upbeat. I have, here on Facebook, tried to always be helpful to anyone who has a problem. The results have been identical no matter what I have done.
Since being here on Facebook gains me no real life and has serious negative consequences to my mental health then I see no reason to stay. In the future if you’d like to know how I am then keep an eye on my blog and give me a phone call every so often. Both my mobile number and email address are currently on my Facebook “About” page.
I will be deactivating the account in about 48 hours (sometime Sunday) to give you time to read this.