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Facebook Breakup Settings

July 9, 2010

Navigating Facebook after a breakup can be terrible. When do you change your relationship status? You just know the minute you change your relationship status to single you’ll have a million wall posts saying “What happened!?” and “I’m here for you if you need me!” Should you unfriend your ex? That would really hurt their feelings, but do you want them to be able to see your every social networking move? Oh, and let’s just be honest with ourselves, you don’t want to unfriend your ex because then you can’t cyberstalk their activities anymore either!

These, and many other reasons, are why I suggest that Facebook create special settings for those going through a breakup. Here are some of the key features the breakup settings would do:

  • Change your relationship status to single, and then automatically delete the corresponding wall post so no one sees it.
  • Hide your ex so you don’t have to see him in your feed every five minutes (and you don’t have to agonize over the fact that he’s posting new pictures, deleting pictures of you, updating his info, basically getting his Facebook account back into dating shape. And what does it mean that he’s been playing a lot of Farmville lately? It must mean he’s lonely and bored and misses you. And who the hell introduced him to Mafia Wars? He didn’t play that before you broke up. It must have been another girl. That bitch.).
  • Keep you from impulsively reaching out to old exes. There is a reason they are exes. The breakup settings will just know it’s a bad idea and not allow you to message them.
  • Hide all those bitches from high school that are now engaged, married and/or having a baby – you don’t need to see that kinda happiness at this time. The breakup settings will bring to the forefront all the people who are going through messy breakups and divorces, that way you know you are not alone (and you are maybe even better off than some of them!).
  • Intuitively know when you’ve had too much to drink and keep you from messaging the ex, visiting their page or looking through old pictures of you together, when you were oh-so-happy. Emotional cutting is not a good idea.
  • Intuitively know when you’ve had too much to drink (or are just in a dramatic mood) and keep you from posting awkward status updates, like “I just know everything happens for a reason,” or “I miss someone today.” No one wants to read that. Or even worse, it will keep you from saying terrible things about your ex and airing your relationship’s dirty laundry. People definitely want to read that (it’s interesting stuff!), but you’ll regret it later.
  • Automatically give you a new password. Because it’s highly likely you both knew each other’s passwords and can hack into each other’s accounts at the drop of a dime.
  • Prevent you from posting pictures with the wrong intentions – ie: you with another guy because you want your ex to see you’ve totally moved on or glamour shots of you looking hotter than ever so he’ll know what he’s lost.
  • When the time is right, eventually unfriend your ex. We all know that “let’s remain friends” hardly ever works, in real life or on Facebook.

What else should the Facebook breakup settings do? Don’t you think Facebook should totally hire me to help with this initiative?!


21 Comments leave one →
  1. dawn permalink
    July 9, 2010 8:51 am

    All very good ideas but I am afraid they can not afford to hire you!!

  2. Ashley permalink
    July 9, 2010 10:37 am

    And this is exactly why I simply opted out of Facebook following the breakup…thankfully so did he. No awkward questions, no need to “unfriend”. Nice and easy. Well as nice and easy as these things can be…

  3. September 16, 2010 7:41 pm

    Bit late now perhaps, but you can actually do a few of the things on your list. Like hiding status updates from your ex and deleting that awful “single” notification. And thank God, because it helped when I went through my last break up.

    But as for posting pictures with the wrong intentions – as long as it’s not obvious what you’re trying to do, I think that’s a fantastic way to restore your ego. 🙂

    • September 16, 2010 9:12 pm

      Never too late! Thanks for the comment and the advice. I definitely hid my ex on FB – couldn’t handle seeing updates from him. That’s funny about the pictures, that would be a good ego boost 🙂

  4. February 15, 2011 8:47 am

    You can even set parts of your profile (including your relationship status) to Private in the custom privacy settings before you change your status to single.. Very helpful! Keeps hundreds of “Oh no, what happened?!”-messages from reaching your inbox 😉

    • February 16, 2011 12:07 am

      Ahhh, good tip!! Where were you when I needed this advice?? 🙂 Haha. Nothing worse than those messages. Obviously I just went through a breakup if I’m changing my relationship status. If I wanted to talk to you, don’t you think I would have called??!!

    • Erica permalink
      October 16, 2011 5:53 pm

      Too bad it can’t automatically do that for him, too. What about all of the people who have both of you on Facebook and see his relationship status change?
      I barely touched Facebook for nearly a week after things ended. Our mutual friends found out when he was “now single.” Unfortunately, I was still listed as “in a relationship,” but with no one. It sucked. I really wish that he wouldn’t be in my Top Stories just because he shared a link or something.

      And I have no idea how to feel about this statement: ‘We all know that “let’s remain friends” hardly ever works, in real life or on Facebook.’

      ugh. rant over. The Internet got me into this relationship, which was great, but now that it’s over I’m too scared to log into anything.

      • October 18, 2011 9:43 pm

        Erica,
        That’s the worst!! I’m sorry :(. Facebook makes things a lot more complicated. I’m sorry if my statement about being just friends bothered you… some people disagree, but I really think that! Sorry 😦

  5. December 1, 2011 5:24 am

    Great post. I still have my ex on my friends list, but I’ve hidden his posts so that I only see things when I want to. I’ve been wondering, though, should I keep him on my friends list?

    • December 4, 2011 9:21 pm

      Sarah,
      I have to say that I think it’s easier and possibly healthier if you are able to take him off your friends list. That made a big difference for me – that way I wasn’t able to constantly check out what he was doing (and who he was doing it with). It’s hard to do, but I think it’s worth it.

  6. Evelin permalink
    March 29, 2012 2:09 am

    i’m not sure what else facebook should add because my ex never added me as one of his friends or even change his relationship status.Well, he did add me but only after nearly 2 years of dating and me constantly giving him a hard time, but then one day I gotmad at him and deleted hima nd he wouldn’t add me back. As far as him changing his relationship status he said he didn’t need people knowing his personal life.

    • March 31, 2012 9:54 pm

      Wow Evelin! Sounds like you really dodged a bullet getting away from this guy!

  7. interiorlove permalink
    April 10, 2012 11:58 pm

    Thank you for the much needed smile, possibly the first one in regard to my break-up. Great post! Love your sense of humour 🙂 and your excellent FB tips…

    • April 25, 2012 10:25 pm

      Thank you, interiorlove. I really appreciate the compliment and your taking the time to read/comment!

  8. Cecilly C. permalink
    August 1, 2012 3:22 am

    I changed my status and changed my profile pic to a solo shot. Then a week later, after resisting (somewhat unsuccessfully) the urge to check his page daily, I decided I needed more closure than hiding his posts and unfriended and blocked him. I can’t even see his public listed name anymore, even if I wanted to search it and see his profile pic. For me, this has helped enormously with the process of moving on and letting go. Your blog is great, Catherine. Cheers!

  9. Ana permalink
    October 25, 2012 10:39 pm

    I did write Facebook suggesting they had something for post break-up! My sister had the computer on when I got home right after the break-up, so I changed the status immediately and didn’t log in for a while. Then unsubscribed to his posts and one day I got really angry (don’t even remember why, thank God) unfriended and blocked him. If people tag him in a post, it doesn’t even work as a link on my page.

  10. Claire permalink
    November 9, 2012 3:19 am

    What to do when you delete your ex and then see that his profile isnt on private and you cant help but stalk them 😦 its like an obsession.. who invented facebook its crap!

    • Bria permalink
      November 14, 2012 12:12 am

      you block him. It’s better to not see what he’s doing, or at least what he chooses to show himself doing on Facebook. It’s like any addiction, way better to go cold turkey and let the wounds heal.

  11. December 3, 2012 9:49 pm

    I’m going through this right now and although I’m not quite ready to change my status to single these are good ideas.

  12. knudsj01 permalink
    December 26, 2012 3:23 pm

    I swear Facebook is the devil! And it isn’t even just his page but being FB friends with his family and friends also. 2 days ago i saw his best friend got engaged which sent me into a tailspin and i broke the no contact i was doing so well with and sent him sevetal texts saying everything from “so much for that being us” to “i miss you” to “you did this to us hope your happy”. Plus his sister was posting all the fun stuff they were doing for Christmas. Stuff i was supposed to be at with him. Stupid Facebook!

    He broke up with me 2 weeks ago today and even though I had tons of my own doubts and thought of breaking up with him many times over our year and half relationship, I just can’t seem to bring myself to delete him from FB. He rarely posts anything anyway and has always been that way yet I still can’t seem to stop “checking” his page. I did find the courage to remove his friends and family and at least set his page to not show in my news feed. Its just too in my face. Facebook is EVIL!

  13. Rana permalink
    January 24, 2014 4:30 pm

    OMG Ladies my face is hurting from smiling and having bursts of laughter from reading the responses. LET ME TELL YA,,..i need this. my break up is hurting my heart to the core. i vowed to not reach out to him and that i would fall off the face of the earth for him. He broke up with me and i’m devastated and disappointed because i love this man but he said he was no longer in love with me.(crushed) yes i had doubts and thoughts of leaving him but i didn’t, i stayed(because i believe with love as a foundation anything else could be restored). He and i have been broken up since sat and i’m just now able to allow a smile to come on my face. i miss him, i miss everything about him but i have to let go. and i’ve been struggling with how to do so. i deleted him on fb but his page isn’t set to private, (dangit) cause i stalk the heck out of his page (yes i do don’t judge). i want to stop so badly. but the urges are there and its telling me to check check check.
    any suggestions?
    Facebook is Evil!

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