For better or for worse, social media is all around us. It has infiltrated our lives unlike any generation before us, and has left us with some positive, and some less than desirable results.
While social media is prevalent in our everyday lives, some of us have become very fed up with this new phenomenon. Here, Reddit users who have given up social media share what drove them to make that decision.
It’s a dumb competition to prove how happy you are to people you don’t even really care about.
My friends contact me directly. People who aren’t friends weed themselves out automatically.
My relationships have meaning and a natural ebb and flow. I learn interesting things through talking. They tell me stories and new events are news. I literally can’t imagine how tedious and shallow and empty some people must feel without those real conversations in their lives.
It makes for better friends, more fun, and real meaningful interactions and emotions.
I’m almost 40. I don’t have kids. I don’t dislike kids but I don’t really care about yours. I also don’t care about whatever shitty pyramid scheme you’ve stumbled upon and now promote endlessly. Or that your family had fun in Branson. Also, I’m not going to pray for you. And I saw that cat video yesterday on reddit.
Reading an endless stream of doom and gloom news stories mixed with bragging posts from friends I no longer speak to and relatives I don’t particularly like only made me bitter, angry, and sad. The only messages I got from relatives had a ‘can you do this big favour for me’ at the end. Eventually when I tried to make a jokey post and everyone just completely misread it I just decided ‘screw this’ and deleted my account permanently. I figured that anyone who really cares about me can find other ways to contact me. I’ve felt a significant improvement to my mental health since leaving.
Instagram is a huge contest of people showing off to each other. It is also dominated by famous people who live unrealistic lives and that messes with people’s heads.
I noticed that I would take photos whenever I went out just to be like “Hey! Look, I have a life too!” and I wasn’t really enjoying myself always waiting for a perfect photo opp. They also took up a lot of time and I was sick of drama caused by them.
I quit Instagram because it was too painful seeing my fellow ‘friends’ be at all kinds of events I wasn’t invited to, it was too painful feeling like I’ve missed out on loads of fun, it was too painful trying to find things that can give me a certain number of likes but never actually getting that many because I was just that unpopular on Instagram.
I stopped using facebook because of two reasons.
First of all I have low self esteem, so yes, I am the problem not facebook. When you combine low self esteem and facebook which is basically “Hey! Look what I’m doing, my life’s better than yours!” it doesn’t end well for your mental health. It constantly makes you compare yourself with other peoples lives (which are all glamorous on social media)
Secondly, as harsh as it might sound, I simply don’t care about 90% of the people on there, I mean if I was to find out a very close friend was getting married via facebook before him telling me I’d be pretty pissed off. I still use messenger as I enjoy talking to people, but I don’t care about their (for the most part) fake lives.
I discovered that Facebook is one eternal, awkward Thanksgiving dinner with relatives and friends saying horribly racist or sexist things while I had to decide, after each comment, “Is this the statement where I speak up and ruin Thanksgiving?”
We don’t use any apps owned by FB so that means Insta and Whatsapp are out, too.
It just became an outlet for my political rants and I had the realization that I was “that guy”. Easier to stop using all together than to actually control those impulses.
There were constant arguments on both sides that started getting personal, and it seemed easier to deactivate my Facebook account than try to unsubscribe from… well, everybody.
I’ve never used Instagram. Never saw the point of Twitter.
I have a Facebook account without content just to keep in touch with some far-away relatives. Other than that, there is absolutely nothing of interest on social media.
I refuse to add strangers as ‘friends’ just to pad the numbers. I don’t care about their lives, and I don’t care about sharing my life with the world. I don’t need likes or emojis to validate my life and feel good about myself.
I stopped using it and deleted my account 6 years ago when it was awash with pictures of food, relationship status’ and arguments in comments between people who were either friends bickering over something that didn’t matter, or strangers just trying to out “keyboard warrior” each other on things they knew nothing about.
I reactivated my account after not speaking to half of my friends for years, who’s excuse for excluding me in events and gatherings was “but you don’t have facebook, we don’t know how to get hold of you! 0_o” Written via mobile… these people had had my number, email address, and home address for a good while. This is when I realized just how anti-social said social media really is.
It did however kick start a long lost friend to get in touch with me and we have now been in a relationship for 2 years. I don’t know how to feel about facebook anymore….
I caught myself logging in about every 5 seconds and swiping to see what everyone was posting. Then I realized ‘what the am I doing? I don’t even care about most of these people!’
Left 4 years ago, never regretted it.
I couldn’t stop looking at pictures of my ex. I had to block my ex on Instagram because if the temptation is there to see what they’re up to, I can’t control myself. I feel so much lighter now, and think about him way less. It’s great.
It made me start to really not like people. You see a different side of them when they’re plastering their stream of thought on Facebook all the time.
I joined Facebook when it came out in my sophomore year of college – around the 2003/2004 timeframe. Back then, it was limited to college students, and I wanted to know what everyone was doing.
Fast forward several years and it’s open to the public. My friends and I all graduated and moved on to the next stages of life (marriage, kids…) and suddenly it became “BabyBook”. All I got anymore were pictures of babies I never met, shares of more baby photos from friends of friends of friends that I never met, spam about liking posts to save/stop something, and friend requests from these people I never met.
Facebook changed from a tool to find out what the people in my social circle were up to, into a stream of unfiltered garbage. I went from wanting to know what everyone was doing, to not caring what anyone was doing.
Pulled plug, never looked back. It felt lonely for a while immediately after, but I eventually realized that I wasn’t really “with others” when I was on it – I just deluded myself into thinking it.
Too many chain letter type posts on Facebook. “Share of you love God!”… screw off.
Plus in android it rapidly drains phone battery without even using it. Hopefully they finally fixed that though.
It was one day at a concert for my favorite band I saw a sea of phones being held up to record them. I realized people wanted to show their friends they were at a concert more than enjoy the moment. I soon stopped caring about what people posted on social media to stroke their egos.
Once I got rid of social media I felt like I lost a lot of “friends” but was able to make stronger bonds with the people around me. Yes, it sometimes takes me a little longer to catchup on the new trending topic or gossip but I don’t even care to know about it. 10/10 would recommend.
Don’t really have good enough friends to justify using it, plus I don’t like plastering pictures of myself online for potential employers to see, and for people to ridicule. To put it short, I love my anonymity and stick to Twitter/Reddit.
I come from the dark times before the internet.
When I graduated high school (1995) the internet was just starting to slowly catch on. By the time I was finished with college in 1999, it was more common, but still not as pervasive as it is today.
Facebook wasn’t open to the public until 2006.
Now, before the internet it was just a fact of life that you would lose touch with and stop talking to most of the people you knew growing up and from high school and college.
By the time Facebook was there, it had been 10+ years since I spoke to most people I knew when I was younger. I did not (still don’t) care what they were doing or where they were. I left my hometown in 1995 and have never returned. If I cared about them, I would have kept in touch.
So, for me personally, there was never a reason to use Facebook.
As far as Instagram…I don’t know what the draw is. I assume it’s just another iteration of Facebook. My kids use it, that’s all I know.
I have not stopped but I share a similar mindset.
People don’t post “Happy Mothers day to the greatest mother in the world!” because they love their mothers…
They post it so you can see how much they say they love their mothers.
I stopped using Instagram because I don’t see the point when Facebook basically does the same thing.
Some of the answers have been edited for clarity.