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Facebook…or Fakebook?

A Screenshot of various pictures of two smiling blonde women on holiday in the sunshine

Updated on January 30th, 2023

Greek Island hopping with my sister Al – July 2015

I’m back!  I’ve not posted anything for a while so I must be doing OK, right?  I’ve definitely been busy as my Facebook persona demonstrates it regularly. The thing is I’m suspicious as to whether it tells the whole truth. My sister Al calls it Fakebook & I have to say, I couldn’t agree more.

I’m sorry if you’re that person who is genuinely happy all the time & everything that goes onto Facebook is a true representation of your daily life (I may have once been that person…?). Mine isn’t, at least not now. I work on the theory that nobody wants to know when you’re curled up on your bed & can’t stop crying.  Nobody is interested when you have to (literally) run away from a lovely party full of friends because you just can’t control yourself & don’t want to ruin everyone’s night. Or when you’re just on a trip to the tip to recycle your old rusted BBQ & get totally overcome with emotion (a story for another day I think…so many lovely meals, so many lovely memories).

It was about a year ago when I first became aware of the “truth” of Facebook, for me at least. I saw a link which allowed me to analyse my posts & create a word cloud –  a brilliant way of summing up your year, right? I chose not to share it in the end, it was ridiculous & bearing in mind I had just lost my husband, totally at odds with how I felt.

A word cloud in orange and yellow on a black background

An excellent summation of my year – 2015

I started upping the ante with my Facebook posts after I lost Terry to let everyone know I was still here & doing OK.  Then it dawned on me that this could lead people to genuinely think that I was doing OK & I could disappear off the radar. That’s why I started this blog.

For those who are reluctant to delve any deeper than my Facebook (“look where she is now & she’s having a great time, good for her!”), stay there & you will get your ideas reinforced. I’m living the life of Riley! For those who choose to investigate further & not believe all you read, you can come here & realise that I’m not doing nearly as well as the woman with my Facebook account would have you believe.

A screenshot of a facebook post featuring a family at Disneyland

“Happiest place on earth” , Disneyland, LA – September 2015

I look at that woman who shares my name & face on Facebook & I have to say she has a fabulous life. She’s been lucky to be able to follow a passion for travel. Her next 6 months is already planned (Cuba, Bahamas, Sweden, Australia, Cambodia, Argentina, Bolivia & Peru… if you’re interested. Sounds ridiculous (and quite tiring) when you see it written down!). Her jet-set lifestyle, the great days out & shared smiles on nights with good friends create the illusion of an enviable existence. She looks like she’s having an amazing time, she says she’s having an amazing time, she’s always in amazing places & doing amazing things, how could it not be true?

A screenshot of a facebook page featuring a group of friends smiling at the camera in a bar

With my gorgeous family (Vikky included), Byron Bay, Australia – January 2016

I have finally found a way to explain how it feels. I hope everyone reading this has had the chance to know the feeling when you are with the people you love & who love you, when you take time out to appreciate what you have, where you are, how truly happy it all makes you. You get that warm glow from the inside that lights you up.  When you smile it comes from within & is deep & beautiful.

A screenshot of a facebook page featuring two female friends

Amsterdam with Gemma – April 2016

For me, it’s like the pilot light has gone out. You know on your boiler, there’s that small flame & without it, no matter what you do, you cannot create the warmth you need. Until you can spark the ignition in that tiny flame, the lights may be on but your home just can’t get warm. That’s how it feels. The lights are on but it only looks cosy from the outside.

A screenshot of two female friends in sunglasses smiling at the camera

Secret Cinema with Manda – July 2016

I worry that you may think I’m being false, but I’m not, my smiles are genuine, the enthusiasm is real but no matter how hard I try it doesn’t reach the depth & resonate with all the warmth it used to have. My pilot light just won’t spark.

I don’t think I’m alone in having the life I lead & the life I choose to share not completely aligned. If yours is, I salute you, I’m jealous, but please take time to appreciate it & bask in the warm glow whenever you feel it, it’s precious & should be nurtured.

A screenshot of a post on facebook of a family camping

On tour in Oregon with Laura & family – August 2016

In the meantime, I will continue to share my life, I will look happy, I will be smiling out at you from another exotic location but please don’t think it’s representing my reality. At least not until I can find a very skilful heating engineer….




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  1. I think to some extent Facebook is necessarily fake, because it is just an online version of human socialising, a lot of which is fakery. I’m on the ASD spectrum somewhere probably, and maybe because of that I’m more aware of it since I can’t do the social faking thing as well as others. Now, messaging apps are where you talk about real things with your real friends. But Facebook? It’s where people project things about themselves to assure continued acceptance in the social group, just like at parties in real life. I think people get upset upon discovering how much faking happens on Facebook, is only because most people aren’t aware how much we actually do it in person as well.

    Well, except those of us with Aspergers or related conditions. We are very aware.

    1. Thank you, Teja for sharing such a personal & interesting perspective. I’m glad my post struck a chord & appreciate your thoughts. x

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