General Question

filmfann's avatar

Have you had any anxiety over reconnecting with friends on a social website?

Asked by filmfann (39595 points ) April 19th, 2009

I recently joined Facebook. Suddenly, I find lots of friends from school giving me friend requests. I am thrilled to be back in contact with some. I like most of them, and don’t mind most of the others, I guess, but I am a bit worried about suddenly having some people in my life that I carefully trimmed out.

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13 Answers

squirbel's avatar

You don’t have to add those people. They never see that you rejected their request.

Don’t stress yourself by adding people you don’t care about. Facebook will be less fun with them in your network; you may eventually quit FB because of it.

AlfredaPrufrock's avatar

@filmfann, this seems apropos to your question.

My Facebook page has become a mish-mash of “ages and stages” friends, acquaintances and a few people met only through Facebook. I’m approaching FB from an old school background on both public relations and relationships.
1. Just because someone sends you a message or invitation, you don’t have to accept it. You can retain the relationship through messaging only. This gives both parties 30 day’s access to the other person’s site, but doesn’t give them full access. This is like bumping into someone and saying, “let’s do lunch!” and then not following up.
2. If you do add people, you don’t have to let them see all of your page. You can limit what people can see, by individual. One of my daughters does not give me access to her Wall, the other lets me crawl all over the thing (I don’t).
3. Be cognizant that your Facebook page can be accessible to work, and that your page content should never contain anything that presents you in any sort of compromising situation. The adage, “Live your life so you wouldn’t be embarrassed to have your grandmother read about it on the front page newspaper” extends to Facebook.
4. Don’t be afraid to remove people from your friend’s list after you’ve added them. This happens all the time. They don’t receive any notification.

Don’t stress out about it. Facebook is a communication tool. In the age of cell phones, it’s replaced the phone book as a finding device, and serves as a means for mass communication. Don’t feel you have to accept invitations to snowball fights or Mafia Wars, or quizzes. The other person won’t know if you ignore the request.

aprilsimnel's avatar

You can block people if you want.

hearkat's avatar

As noted, you can set up different permissions for different “friends” I have 5 different groups that either come from a different part of my life and/or that have different access to my information.

I just became active on FB a few weeks ago, and even the people I barely remember have been very nice. I Friend Requested one friend I knew 28 years ago who apologetically admitted that she barely remembered me. Once I gave her a few things I knew she’d recall, it all came back to her. My memory is much the same these days, I need “triggers”.

If someone sends a request that you felt had a toxic presence in your life or that brings back negative memories for you, simply ignore their request. FB gives you tons of control.

Facade's avatar

Adding people you’ve cut out of your life makes no sense to me.

ru2bz46's avatar

I denied a FB friends request recently because I did not want that person to show in my friends list. It would have been very insulting for another person in my list to see them there because of unresolved painful history.

filmfann's avatar

I know how that is. I have a similar problem.

ru2bz46's avatar

@filmfann When I denied the request, I sent a message with it explaining why. They understood completely since they were the party that wronged my other friend.

Macaulay's avatar

I don’t see the big deal. Rejecting/blocking/denying/avoiding are GREAT benefits of have internet. Use them.

MacBean's avatar

I don’t use Facebook or MySpace specifically because I don’t care to be found. I’m still in touch with the people I want to be in touch with by phone/email/IMs, etc. I don’t miss anybody I don’t know how to reach.

vulcanjedi's avatar

I get quite a bit of grief from my wife about any female on my friend list that is not one of her friends and also anybody that I have not seen in person for the last 15 years. The idea of having a friend I have not seen for 35 years on my list as a friend is a totally foreign concept to her.

tiffyandthewall's avatar

yes. although i can easily reject a friend request, i don’t always not want to reconnect with them, i’m just not sure how i want to go about it/how i feel about actually re involving them in my life again.

AlfredaPrufrock's avatar

@tiffyandthewall , just exchange messages with a person until you can assess how comfortable you are with the person, and how they use facebook. If you’re exchanging messages, you can get a sense of what they’re about. Don’t extend an invitation or accept an invitation if you don’t want the contact.

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