Facebook Birthday Greetings, SO Overrated...NOT! (yes, I'm using 90's, lingo what can I say?!)

June 22, 2014

Facebook birthday reminders are just annoying sometimes. 

First of all, cool people are not even on Facebook, my husband is proof of that although he is constantly looking over my shoulder to see the pictures and he loves when I read him status updates.  Hmmmm…maybe I’m the cool one because I have that access?  Secondly, facebook birthday greetings are many things including annoying as I mentioned and disingenuous.  Let me explain why:

Annoying…that name pops up and you have just a few minutes to check your news feed but guilt sets it so you scroll back and just write happy birthday.  

Touching…reading all those birthday feeds makes the birthday girl feel pretty special, despite the fact that she probably hasn’t even seen the well wishers in years.

Nostalgic…I see those names pop up and immediately recall a funny moment about that person and a memory of which they may not even be aware…it’s a nice feeling to just remember sometimes.

Disingenuous.  Your real friends do not need a reminder to know it's your birthday right? 

Hence, even cool Facebook users like myself (this is called positive self-esteem okay?!) don’t need those Facebook birthday messages to feel special on birthdays, right?  WRONG!  I tested this theory and it was a massive fail!

It's my friend Mary's fault the fault of Mary’s husband.  Over lunch last spring she was explaining the pitfalls of Facebook and the compromised security factor.  She is an avid Facebook user so I listened.

Her husband is an IT expert and she passed along his advice:  remove her birthday from Facebook for most of the year for security reasons.  But because everyone wants to be feted on their big day, he said to go ahead and add her birthday back a week before the big date.  Easy peasy, so I did just that.  Sort of.  I removed my birthday but then forgot to add it back.  No big deal right?  My real friends would know when my birthday was anyway, right?

My birthday fell on a Sunday morning last year.  My husband was wonderful as always.  He had planned to take me away for the evening since my in-laws were eager to have some one-on one time with our kids.  It would have been a lovely day except that my beloved aunt was in critically ill and my entire family was rightfully preoccupied with her condition.   Given her condition, I was in no mood to celebrate when I woke up that morning but my husband encouraged me to check Facebook, read my birthday messages and maybe get a little boost.

Let me tell you…NO messages.  That’s right, 800 friends, NO messages.  My family was excused, they were understandably preoccupied.  To be fair, my friend Dan did call from Puerto Rico.  I got a few texts…Charmaine texted from Bermuda, Kim texted and so did the boy who liked me throughout high school…go figure.  Maria called at 9 pm at which point I was already in bed so I did not get the message until the next day.  It turns out that I did get a single lonesome FB (that’s Facebook for the regulars) message from my friend Yvette around 8 pm in the evening.  That verified that my account was working and people could post if they felt so inclined.  I do remember thinking that maybe Facebook was just not working and delaying posts, Yvette’s post negated that thought!

This year…I am SO not too cool to have my birthday on Facebook.  And forget about security, it’s not like I’d post my birth year on Facebook…hello, even regular FB users need some privacy!




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