Facebook Addiction and Marriage

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Are you on Facebook? A common question. My common answer used to be Absolutely! I’ll friend you.

I no longer have the common answer. Instead i must say I used to be on Facebook. And then I tell my story. Of addiction.


My first introduction to Facebook was during vacation with my then teenaged sister-in-law. I thought it was just a thing for the teeny boppers.

Several months later a friend mentioned that she was on Facebook. I laughed. because she was my age. She gushed about the joys of connecting with old high school & college friends & the ease of sharing your life across the miles.

That night I came home & signed up.

My first status update was so awkward. I could not figure out whether to use first person or third person in my language. Both seemed strange, mainly because I was talking about myself – to myself.

When trying to find friends through my alumni associations, I realized there were not many in my age bracket online. I began to feel silly for hopping on the teeny bopper bandwagon, but stayed put. Slowly, but surely, the MySpace crew crossed over to Facebook. Old acquaintancs popped up on a day by day basis.

It was like a virtual reunion.

It’s been forever since I last saw you!
Where are you living?
You’re children are gorgeous!
What are their names?
Where do you work?

I reconnected with friends from preschool who moved away, friends from my childhood that lived states apart, friends from summer camp, friends from my hometown, friends from college.

I also connected with the friends that I see everyday but did not have the opportunity to converse with during our to & from, friends from church, friends from the kids’ schools, friends of my husband, friends I met through mutual friends.

I was friends with the firefighter who stopped by our lemonade stand last summer, friends with the host at our local chick-fil-a, friends with random people in my hometown that I would not know if they hit me in the head with a two-by-four.

What was once awkward became second nature to me.

The kids said something funny – status update.
Something interesting happening in our town – status update.
Question about dry, itchy skin – status update.
Crazy episode of LOST last night – status update.

Fellow moms would respond with their kids’ funny thoughts. I would garner a group of friends to accompany around town to interesting venues. I was given skin care tips & one friend even sent my a sample of her miracle lotion, a full discussion on the interpretation of LOST & what is to come ensued.

I dished with my friends daily. It was like I had a constantly rotating roundtable of friends with whom I could discuss life.

Facebook became a habit. My habit turned into an addiction.

Many mornings, before even walking up the stairs to wake my children, I would check my email to see if anyone had commented, requested, invited, tagged, poked or responded from Facebook.

My computer never slept. I refreshed my page each time I walked by the screen. I stayed awake hours past the time my husband retired to bed. Oftentimes nothing new was happening, but I could not pull myself away.


It became a constant point of contention with my husband.

He would leave his stresses of work & come home to piles of laundry, crumbs on the floor & dishes in the sink. Dinner may be prepared, maybe not. As a stay-at-home-mom, I had not found time to care for our home, but I had somehow updated my Facebook status 6 times, uploaded pictures & conversed with 15 friends.

In conversation with his in real life friends, he would find out about tidbits about me that I had failed to share with him. They read about it on Facebook.

Our time spent at home together was often with me in front of the computer screen.

Yeah. Facebook was not good for my marriage.


I tried going on Facebook fasts.

They worked, until I came back online & fell back into my old ways.

I knew I had a problem. I was finally ready to do something about it.

I went on Facebook & left my final status update. With a heavy heart, I bid farewell to my almost 1000 friends & deactivated my account.


It has been almost a month. Withdrawal is tough but each day gets a little easier.

Next step, clearing out the google reader. Blogs are another addiction I am in need of tackling.

Hey, at least it’s not drugs, right?

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