• Other Friendship Advice

Babies, dogs and Facebook friends

Published: August 1, 2013 | Last Updated: April 2, 2016 By | 2 Replies Continue Reading
Our family cat at my son's apartment in Manhattan

Our family cat at my son’s apartment in Manhattan

The etiquette of responding to Facebook friends is murky and can inadvertently causes rifts and misunderstandings, even between good friends.

QUESTION

Hi Irene,

I have a friend who has been in my life since high school. We have even worked together at a few different jobs. When we are actively hanging out, it’s a lot of fun and we get along great but I have one issue I can’t seem to get past.

In this day and age of Facebook and Instagram, I am feeling left out by her. I post photos of my child and status updates but rarely hear from her. She never “likes” any of the photos of my child and it is extremely hurtful when I see all of the “likes” and comments she is giving our mutual friends.

I realize I am talking about FB and Instagram and it all sounds trivial but it is really rather hurtful and I am feeling left out. Am I off base? Am I reading too much into it?

Signed, Joy

ANSWER

Hi Joy,

How fortunate you are to have this wonderful friendship that has survived so many life changes. If being ignored on Facebook is bothering you and stands to affect the friendship, this concern isn’t trivial.

Raise the issue, in person, next time you see your friend and find out what’s up. Some of my Facebook friends constantly post pictures of children and pets; others loathe the practice, especially those without either. But if your friend is liking and commenting on pictures of children posted by your mutual friends, something is wrong. Maybe your posts aren’t making her Facebook feed—or she isn’t aware she is ignoring your photos.

Because this is a friendship you want to keep, online and off, why don’t you just ask your friend if she’s seeing the photos you are posting?

Also, I’m glad you realize the importance of not blowing the issue out of proportion. It’s good that you asked me because I suspect similar misunderstandings with Facebook friends are common.

Hope this helps!

My best, Irene


Other relevant posts on The Friendship blog about Facebook friends:


Have you ever felt hurt by something you saw posted by Facebook friends?

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Category: Online friends

Comments (2)

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  1. jacqueline says:

    You have a great relationship in the real world, so I wouldn`t take it to heart when she does not respond to your updates on Facebook.

  2. Amy says:

    One of the problems of digital communication, in my opinion, is that it’s one dimensional and leaves a lot to (mis)interpretation.
    Did you know that Facebook has some unknown formula for deciding what shows up on people’s news feeds? Your friend may not even be seeing all of your posts, even if you’re getting all of hers. The only way to insure you’re getting all updates is if you go into the person’s profile and select get all updates. Even if you get all of your friend’s updates she may not get all of yours.
    I’d assume some FB anomaly rather than a personal slight, since you and your friend have no issues and get along fine. Still, I’d ask her if she gets your updates, since she hasn’t liked or commented recently and her feedback is important to you.
    I bet FB is the real culprit here. Good luck.

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