I’m Having a Bad Day But I Won’t tell You Why

Sad womanI recently wrote about getting blocked on Facebook and the emotional distress this caused me, or to be more accurate, the brief moment of surprise when I figured it out and then the laugh I had when I thought about how stupid it was.

Admittedly, I spend more time on Facebook then I should, otherwise, I probably wouldn’t have even noticed that I’d been blocked. But I think Facebook is kind of a fun diversion and I like to see what cool pictures, interesting links, and good news my friends have to share. I even appreciate the occasional sad news post so I know to reach out to a friend who’s going through a tough time. These are fine as long as they’re specific, such as, “RIP, Goldie the goldfish,” or “Bad news. I didn’t get the job. :(”

The thing that really, really drives me crazy, though, are what I call, the “I Need Attention” posts.

These posts usually go something like, “Just made an extremely hard decision,” or “Could life possibly get any harder?” or simply, “I’m Sad.”

There are also the ones that try to be poetic but are also begging for sympathy, such as, “The rain outside matches my mood today,” and “We come into the world alone and we leave it the same way,” and my personal favorite, “Life is cruel.”

All of these are purposely vague, often despondent status updates that beg for a response such as “Oh no!” “What’s wrong?” and “Sending you hugs!”

Now I’m not heartless. I know the person posting updates like these is clearly having a tough time. But why the need for ambiguity? When I want to support someone, I don’t want to have to go on a fishing expedition to find out what’s bothering them. I think if you are looking for support, then be upfront about it. You want your bruised ego soothed? Ask for it. Try something like, “Just got another rejection letter for a book proposal and I’m really down. Say nice things about me to make me feel better!”

Can you imagine if people did this in real life? If I ran into a friend on the street and she said, “Could life be any harder?” and then she walked away, I’d be so annoyed I’d probably chase her down the street and hit her with my bag just to prove that yes, life actually could be harder.

Since it’s the same people I see doing this over and over again on Facebook, I guess I could do one of two things. I could private message them and suggest they try being more direct.

Or I could block them!

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23 responses to “I’m Having a Bad Day But I Won’t tell You Why

  1. Vaguebooking. It’s ridiculous when adults do it. Handle your business, people!

  2. Liz

    Currently LOLing over this (and I’m on my work lunch break, eating at my desk, so coworkers are probably wondering why lol):

    Can you imagine if people did this in real life? If I ran into a friend on the street and she said, “Could life be any harder?” and then she walked away, I’d be so annoyed I’d probably chase her down the street and hit her with my bag just to prove that yes, life actually could be harder.

  3. I hate these posts too. What’s the point? If you want help with something just let us know specifically otherwise be quiet about it. That was mean, wasn’t it? Oh no, now I’m mean. I feel guilty. Maybe I should go post that as my Facebook status … Feeling guilty.

  4. This left me with a lot of feelings. Like a bird who flies away from its mother. Why is feeling so hard?

  5. kizzbeth

    Survey says I’m 75% less likely to acknowledge your loss/anger/heartbreak if you vaguebook it. Yes, I’m heartless. Go update your status! 😉

  6. I’m not vague. I’m mysterious.

  7. Robin

    Tracy – You have hit on one of my Facebook pet peeves. I’ll never respond to something like that I hate seeing others play right into it. And I really get annoyed when people ask, “What happened?” and the person who posted doesn’t answer! (Talk about being rude! People show concern and you turn your back on them.) I think people should have to take a class on social media etiquette before they get on Facebook and you and I should teach it!

  8. You nailed it. I think we all have those vague kind of whiners in our list. Luckily, most of mine are the opposite. sd

  9. I feel like I see less of that now than I did in the beginning years of Facebook. Maybe some people are catching on that others find this really annoying? Or maybe I just ignore it more effectively now.

    • I think you’re right. It was such an issue at one point that even Urban Dictionary added it to their list. (read the definitions. They’re dead on!) http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=Vaguebooking&defid=3736098

      • That’s exactly what it was. I’m a former middle school/high school teacher, and (stupidly) when Facebook first started, I accepted a bunch of Facebook requests from former students, now in their late teens or early twenties. They’d write updates like this (“I’m having the worst day ever. Crying nonstop. No one loves me.”) I’d get all freaked out, as their former teacher/pseudo-authority figure. But quickly I learned that two hours later most of them would have happy, earnest updates, completely the opposite of the former.

  10. Don’t feel bad. I find that some 30/40 year old moms are the worst offenders!

  11. I say block them. Who needs that BS? Unless their goldfish died. Then their grief is totally understandable. I can’t stand the ppl who write eulogies about their dog, Fluffy, on FB. I don’t give a shit about Fluffy, ok?

  12. OMG, too cute! I call it Facebook-itis. Those vague posts annoy me so much I had to actually write a blog post about it, along with why we don’t have an option for more than just a LIKE button. There are so, so many other responses to people’s posts…I think I stopped the list at 19 other options we should have! LOL I have had to block actual friends and family just because I don’t need to see what they look like, again, today. Don’t get me started… Love it! Thanks for the laugh 🙂