Facebook is something I use every day. I don’t typically spend hours on there unless I’ve left the window open for whatever absent-minded reason. Some of my family members are Friends, for ease of access and to prevent drama. My mother is not on my friends list. Up until this morning, I had been keeping my brother off because I didn’t want her to have my information vicariously through his account.
There are also several aunts and cousins of mine that I communicate with spottily. One of my aunts sent me this message this morning:
Lori is the aunt, Kasandra is my mother, and Miles is my brother.
Most people would not think that an exchange like this is worthy of mention or being upset about. However, I feel very much as though my trust has been breached in some way. I’m pretty upset about this.
You see, the whole family knows that I’m out of contact with my mother and I’m not particularly interested in her knowing things about me. She doesn’t (to my knowledge) know where I live, that I’m married or even in a relationship, where I work, what I plan to do with my life, none of it. It’s entirely possible that she’s looked up my information before now and seen my goings-on, but I’m fairly certain that my specifics aren’t open to the public. And even so, that’s sleuthery of her own.
It is not the same as essentially being linked to my page by someone else. I clicked on Kasandra’s profile and my brother’s to look at their stuff, and I’m almost certain she would have clicked mine and checked as well. Considering that my name is totally and completely different from what it used to be, I’m sure she’d wonder who the fuck I am.
“Seen by Kasandra”
So at this point she knows that I’m married–that much is visible publicly. Why am I so upset, knowing that she could have looked me up at any time before now?
Well, number one, I changed the spelling of my name about two years ago. I was using “Elli” and then changed to “Elly”, so that much would throw off a search. My current ‘additional name’ bit on Facebook is also spelled with a ‘y’, making it slightly more difficult to just look me up if you’re not smart enough to use the mutual friends feature. I haven’t been particularly concerned about her digging up information about me up until this point.
Number two, my aunt linked my mother directly to me. I mean, maybe she doesn’t realize that that happens when you start a message with several people, but for fuck’s sake. I’m glad she reminded me that I’ve been meaning to message my brother, and linked me to what I assume is his primary account. But, I really really feel like this was intentional. She messaged the three of us, a family unit, and didn’t include any other cousins or aunts or uncles who DEFINITELY use Facebook.
It feels to me as though she were leading my mother to me. That is a breach of my trust. As Olivia points out, being angry tells us that our boundaries have been encroached upon. And, actually, I don’t see this as an irrational anger. I haven’t spoken to my mother in two and a half years. I don’t want her involved in my life. I’m barely getting to a point where I’d be willing to talk to her to negotiate seeing my brother. People should not be telling her things about me or leading her to information about me, ESPECIALLY without my consent.
This also opens my mother up to contacting me directly, since not only has a forum been provided for exactly that purpose, but she could freely private message me. I don’t want to talk to her. I don’t want her in my life. I haven’t actively sought to block her from seeing my stuff because most of the time I’m neutral about her existence and, again, not really that concerned. I haven’t felt the need to be proactively fending her off, or I would have looked into getting a restraining order.
It’s highly doubtful that any family members–at least those that would be involved in this–read my blog. But, if there are any of you, I really don’t care if you’re offended or pissed off that I’m talking about this publicly. I’m sorry for not coming directly to you, but I can’t confront someone while I’m still angry, and I usually let it pass once I’m done being mad. Regardless of intention, what has been done is fundamentally fucked up. And notice that while I fucking hate what has happened, I’m still protecting the anonymity of the persons involved by blocking out the last name.
I, unlike other people, consider the ramifications of my actions and take into account the feelings of people involved before I do something like this. It may seem like nothing; a message about Thanksgiving dinner gatherings. But I’m seriously considering dropping all of you fucking people. I haven’t had a positive, transparent conversation with any of my family members, my dad’s unit and my cousin D excluded, in sooo incredibly long. The two are mutually exclusive: if I’m being transparent, the interaction becomes negative, and if I withhold my opinions, the conversation remains positive.
Is there really any question as to why I don’t talk to you people?