Social Question

AnonymousWoman's avatar

Do you see the point in saying "Happy Birthday" to people on Facebook?

Asked by AnonymousWoman (6523points) December 27th, 2011

I am one of those people who wishes “Happy Birthday” to people on my Facebook list whenever I remember to. I try to make a habit out of this every single day—checking the birthday section. It is one of the things that keeps me from deleting my Facebook account as well. I don’t want to miss one and I feel bad if I realize I did.

The more I do this, the more I feel like I’m just going through the motions and I wish I had never started doing this in the first place.. because if I miss one now, it makes it look like I don’t like the person.

I try to mean it before I say it, but I’m starting to feel like it’s pointless and that a “Happy Birthday” means more when it’s remembered… off Facebook.

Yet, people seem to like getting birthday wall posts. Not everyone, of course, but… several people, still. Even I do. If someone doesn’t wish me a “Happy Birthday” on Facebook, I feel sort of slighted… o_O

How can I stop letting Facebook control my feelings and break this pattern without offending anyone (without deleting Facebook)?

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17 Answers

chyna's avatar

You are over thinking this. After you have been on facebook a couple of years or so, you won’t even care or go out to facebook as often.

Imadethisupwithnoforethought's avatar

Honestly, after my divorce, I was feeling very isolated from my old “couple friends”.

Then, my birthday rolled around and I got a dozen happy birthdays from people I hadn’t talked with in a long time.

Sometimes, going through the motions means a great deal to someone else.

Aethelwine's avatar

No one should feel offended for not getting a Happy Birthday message from some of their friends on Facebook. It’s so easy to overlook the birthday updates in the upper right hand corner. Not everyone logs in every day too. I know I’ve missed many birthdays. If the person is that important to me I certainly don’t need Facebook to remind me of their birthday.

I do love getting the birthday greetings though. I get a lot more than I normally would thanks to Facebook, but I won’t feel slighted if anyone forgets to post on my wall.

btw- any of my friends out there… bday is in 8 days. Don’t forget! :P

chyna's avatar

Happy almost birthday @jonsblond. I’ll catch you on facebook though.

AnonymousWoman's avatar

@chyna You may be right about me over-thinking this. I’ve been using Facebook for more than two years, though. I guess I’m noticing it more now because I’ve seriously limited my time on Facebook now. I don’t feel I spend as much time on there as I used to, but there is that nagging voice that reminds me to log in and check the birthday section still.

@Imadethisupwithnoforethought Thank you. That makes me feel better. I do like helping other people’s days become just a bit brighter if I can. :)

@jonsblond If it’s just an acquaintance, I don’t feel slighted. It’s when it’s someone who I care about who I’m deeper friends with. I know it’s so silly, but yeah. Maybe I have some kind of OCD or something. Happy early birthday. :)

Supacase's avatar

I see posts from friends thanking everyone for the birthday wishes, so I do think it is worth doing. It isn’t something to stress over, though. Sometimes I miss a day or a few people and I doubt they even notice. They can’t expect all 300 of their friends to post happy birthday.

augustlan's avatar

Like @jonsblond said, I’ve missed a few because I don’t always log in every day. I don’t think I’d notice if someone didn’t post on my birthday. I like giving birthday greetings, though, and receiving them. Facebook kind of makes the whole day more festive.

Aethelwine's avatar

I think the ticker (or whatever you call it) along with the ads makes the whole right hand of the screen so busy now that it’s very easy to overlook the birthdays. You just need to remind yourself that your friends were probably busy and missed it. Don’t feel too bad, my mom was getting upset because there would be times when she would post something and no one would like it. My sisters and I had to reassure her and tell her to not take Facebook so seriously. At least you aren’t being as sensitive as my mom. thanks for the early bday wish =)

YARNLADY's avatar

Yes, I think it is a sign that people remember or, if reminded, are happy to know you. By the way, you can remember me in exactly 33 days.

Aethelwine's avatar

^yay! another January bday!

JLeslie's avatar

It is fantastic to have bunches and bunches of happy birthday messages from people on our facebook news feed. Especially the first time it happens, when you are a new facebooker.

JLeslie's avatar

January. Garnet and carnations. My birthday is coming up very soon.

AnonymousWoman's avatar

@Supacase That makes sense, actually. Super good points. :)

@augustlan Maybe I should just stop focusing on it so much and do what feels natural. That’s what you seem to do and it seems to work out just fine. :)

@jonsblond Your Mom should trade Facebook friends with me. I have a problem posting statuses that nobody likes. It rarely ever happens. The notifications can be stressful to keep up with sometimes, but yet I like getting them. I’m so glad they combined them all so that they say something like “ThisPerson and 5 other friends liked your status” or whatever it says. I have the timeline now, so it says something about the timeline now instead if I’m remembering right. As for why several people like my stuff, it’s probably ‘cause I like a bunch of their stuff when I see it in my news feed, so people feel they can do the same to me. Maybe your Mom should do that, too. :)

I think you may be right about that ticker. I barely pay close attention to it. It moves too fast. It was a fun and flashy toy at first, but I don’t really care about it all that much now and prefer to look elsewhere.

You’re welcome for the early birthday wish. :)

@YARNLADY I will try. It would be easier to know the exact day or what time zone you are in.

@JLeslie :) It seems like this thread is where all the January babies are coming out. hehe :)

john65pennington's avatar

Carry on with your tradition. All of us like to be recognized on our birthday and your efforts are not unnoticed. jp

judochop's avatar

Yes…Take the whole entire two seconds to type it to the person if you see that it is their birthday. To not do so is lazy, for christs sake, it takes two seconds. Would you wish them a happy birthday if they were in front of you?
It’s nice to know someone thought of you…

jca's avatar

I try to do birthday wishes when I see it on the ticker, just because I think it’s a nice gesture. However, if I overlook it or forget, I won’t lose sleep over it. My “real life” friends I will talk to on the phone, send a card, make a plan to see them, or any combo of the above.

It’s nice that you’re so concerned about it, but some people have hundreds of friends and they probably don’t think any less of you for not wishing them Happy Birthday.

YARNLADY's avatar

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