Text, Email, Facebook Chats from Relationships Past

23Nov08

A month or so ago, I read Scott Brown’s “I’ll Be There 4 U” and although I appreciated how witty and well written his article was (and always is), I couldn’t fully empathize with his annoyance that “in the age of queue-able social priorities, Twitter-able status updates, and amaranthine cloud memory, keeping friends requires almost no effort at all…I’ve never lost a Friend, you see, and I’m starting to worry I never will.”

I was under the confectionary impression that there’s no harm in never losing touch with even minor acquaintances. 

Until last week when I experienced a strange and steady stream of text, emails and IMs via Facebook from friendships and relationships past. Maybe it was because on birthdays, and especially close to holidays, people decide it’s time to reconnect and rethink the end of a relationship. But whatever the reason, it freaked me out a little. 

One text in particular, from a relationship long long past, made me realize that in the dating world, it’s no longer possible to delete, delete, delete and cut off past ties. I was just happy that this person is relatively disconnected from my online hangouts (ie. he’s somewhat of an anomaly- not on Facebook, Twitter, MySpace, etc. and not really Google-able either).

And now I’m wondering if I should have a policy of never dating people who are in my networks online or if, in the unfortunate event that a relationship does end, in addition to giving each other back the things we’ve collected together, we should have a parting of our digital data- giving back or vowing to delete our numbers programed into each other’s phone, our Facebok friend status, our SNs in each other’s buddy list on IM, our email taken out of each other’s Gmail contacts list, the virtual gift we gave each other on Valentines, the song we dedicated to each other on iLike, the Flickr pool we started to share photos, and giving our word that we won’t refresh these digital ties down the road. Because if not, it gets messy, if only as a result of being unnecessarily prolonged. I know too many people who’s relationship drama played out and still plays out (long after the relationships actually ended) in their newsfeed.

Anyway, it’s an interesting time to be a single girl in the digital world:)

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Genius FB image via here.

-Amanda Mooney

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