Loneliness is a complex problem of epidemic proportions, affecting millions from all walks of life.
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I, too, was kind of surprised you were so invested in what other people thought about what you were posting, or liking on Facebook.. I would think that kind of over awareness of what other people MIGHT be thinking would make trying to use Facebook absolutely stifling.
I can assure you, and other readers, that not all adults who use Facebook are socially micro-scouring it for all the social implications involved like our teenaged brethren. That's not be dishonest and say we don't enjoy having a popular status update, or feel bummed when no one likes something ... But I can't say I worry about WHO in particular likes any given something. I rarely think about it. Nor do I even know my friend count or notice anyone else's.
If Facebook feels like high school, perhaps it reflects the users own unresolved issues from those years. I can certainly see how for many people it could. But likewise, Facebook gives us the opportunity to practice the awareness of the reality that people really and truly don't think about us nearly as much as we think they do. And that awareness can be kind of freeing. Maybe it's OK to post some political things no one likes because you're a grown adult with opinions - and to do so and realize people still like you is a wonderful thing.
On dealing with complex emotions.
The Limits of Labels
Research on the risks of becoming attuned to our partners' emotions.
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