Get out of my Facebook

ALEX MANSELL rails against Facebook lovers

Alex Mansell Facebook relationships sex

“Aww I miss you sooooo much my baby girl. Love you loads and loads. <3 x <3 x” Does this look familiar to you? If there’s one thing that really gets to me, it’s a Facebook wall-to-wall between couples that screams “I AM LOVED, SOMEONE FINDS ME SEXY, ENVY MY LOVE LIFE!” And it’s ridiculously common.

I mean, it’s not acceptable to walk around on the street shouting in everyone’s faces how much you love your partner, so why is it acceptable in the cyber world to scrawl everything publicly, letting every ‘friend’ see intimate facts that should be reserved for private consumption? It really is the social equivalent of standing up in a restaurant and saying, “Excuse me, just so everyone knows – this girl right here – she’s my girl and she’s beautiful and I love her sooo much!” Not cool guys, not cool!

Far too many people have the name of their lover in the ‘Interests’ section of their profile, or mention them in the ‘About Me’ part. However, in doing this you are defining yourself by that person, which frankly is clingy, and a little bit odd. I’m not denying a relationship forms a huge part of some people’s lives, but it is a private life.

Have the odd profile picture with them – that’s sweet. Don’t have four close ups in a row of you kissing while one of you tries to angle it so it doesn’t look like they’re holding the camera. Don’t tag them in every other status. And for fuck’s sake, please don’t have a whole photo album dedicated to just the two of you, with pictures of you in various poses looking adoringly at each other.

I despair when I see pictures of a couple just sitting there, on a bed, in a room. It’s like, guys, really, I can think of a whole lot of far more interesting things for you to be doing on that bed – have you really got that bored you’ve resorted to getting snap-happy? I find it genuinely pathetic that there exist photo albums entitled “My boy” or “Sarah + Dan <3”. Jesus, don’t even get me started on the use of the heart.

Like when someone just puts that stupid heart and nothing else on their partner’s wall. It’s like WHY?! I just want to scream at them. And randomly posting “I love you” is even worse – love is a pretty serious word and bandying it about so nonchalantly in the virtual world devalues the term and debases the sentiment.

There’s no weight behind the words because the motivation behind them is not to express genuine affection, but to say HEY EVERYONE LOOK I HAVE SOMEONE TO SAY THIS TO. If you really were thinking of someone why would you not just text them or put it in a private message, so they and they alone can appreciate the sentiment without fear there’s an agenda behind it?

The dynamics of a relationship can in many ways be characterised by how you present yourselves in the public domain, and if you feel the need to constantly assert your feelings in a sphere with so little intimacy, it really calls into question the sincerity of your statement.

People in Durham can be incredibly intelligent, but also incredibly dense when it comes to things like this. It genuinely baffles me as to how some people can be so blindly unaware of how desperate, shallow and attention-seeking they come across.

I mean, the whole point of being a couple is that you are just that – two people, in your own world, making each other happy without having anything to prove, ergo screaming about it all over Facebook just implies a deep-rooted insecurity about the relationship. Either that or an incredibly self-aggrandising streak whereby you have to constantly remind the world of your happiness.

There will be a good many of you reading this that will assume I’m clearly just a bitter singleton lacking in emotions or understanding of how a relationship works. However, the fact is that I just think that there’s a time and a place, that Facebook is the ultimate public arena for satisfying a need for attention, so I feel I’m legitimate in my complaints about the transparency of couples’ sickly sweet interaction.

So if you’ve read this and feel like you belong to that tragic breed I’ve described, I urge you to spare us the saccharine self-glorifying use of Facebook, and if you’re with your boy or girlfriend right now, go have sex with them. If not, send them a text. Either way, I and your 500 other friends really don’t want to hear about it.