Monday, September 9, 2013

The Do's and Don'ts of Social Media: Don't Give In To Passive Aggression

It's our second installment of how to handle yourself on social media after a break-up!  Our first tip was to defriend and unfollow your ex on social networking sites.  Now for tip #2:

DON’T Give In To Passive Aggression. Amid a heavy fog of anger, self-loathing, and/or booze, nothing is more tempting than writing a Russian novel’s worth of passive aggressive tweets and Facebook posts. I’ve been there. You’re sobbing in your car with a box of Krispy Kremes in the passenger seat when a song comes on the radio that couldn’t be more relevant to your failed relationship. ‘OMG I should post these lyrics on Facebook,’ you think, nearly swerving into an oncoming Yukon as you light another cigarette, ‘he’ll totes see it and feel bad! And then maybe he’ll text me about it, and then maybe we’ll have a conversation, and then maybe we’ll get back together, and then we’ll get married at a Sandals resort; nothing gawdy, just a pared-down, tasteful beach ceremony, and then--’ and then you run right through a red light and a cop immediately turns his flashers on behind you.

Secretly, you’re really psyched to pull over because it’ll give you time to post that shit on Facebook as he’s writing out the ticket. Oh honey, I know; but no. Put down the iPhone and just eat another doughnut if you need to. Because I can absolutely guarantee you that this cathartic exercise will have the exact opposite of the desired effect. To demonstrate this point, below is a manslation of the most common variations of passive aggressive post break-up posts.

WHAT YOU POST: “Just give me a reason, just a little bit’s enough/ Just a second, we’re not broken just bent/ And we can learn to love again….” Ugh, Pink is SO dead-on sometimes…
MANSLATION: “I can think of nothing but how much I love you. You can treat me however you want and I will always come back for more. I have one of your Affliction t-shirts and have been smelling it for three hours.”

WHAT YOU POST: “You must not know ‘bout me, You must not know ‘bout me/ I can have another you in a minute/ Matter of fact, he’ll be here in a minute” LOL feels so good 2 move on#FridayNight
MANSLATION: “Watching Notting Hill with my ferret. Have been living in this recliner for three days and smell like a giant vagina.”

WHAT YOU POST: Any Marilyn Monroe quote at all.
MANSLATION: “I am crazier than a fanny pack full of angel dust.”

Here is the fundamental problem with passive aggressive posts: no matter what the content is, the only message you’re actually sending is “I’m thinking about you.” And that’s natural; of course it is. He is no doubt thinking about you, too, no matter how things appear on the surface. But you’re an adult. If you’re thinking about him to the extent that you feel the need to communicate via passive aggressive internet posts, then maybe you just need to communicate. With him -- not the entire internet.

Unfortunately, in this day and age, we place a lot of emphasis on being cool rather than being sincere; retaining the upper hand rather than telling the truth. In my experiences, these tendencies only prolong the process of ending a relationship. The truth of peoples' feelings always comes out eventually anyway. I say be vulnerable and at least you'll know you said all you could. Even if it hurts, you won't have any lingering regrets in the long run, and you won't feel the urge to post a bunch of sassy "I'm over it" memes like an angsty 14-year-old.

So on a more serious note, here are some guidelines for communicating in real life like a mature adult. Don’t use other peoples’ words; force yourself to find your own. Don’t text; force yourself to use your voice. Don’t fortify yourself with liquid courage; only talk when you’re sober. Don’t waste time with anger; get honest about the hurt underneath it. Don’t try to “win” the break-up; just satisfy your own mind that you said everything you needed to say. Don’t blame yourself for getting hurt; figure out why that person was sent into your life and what they taught you. Tell them what that was, whether they deserve to hear it or not. It’s a fulfilling means of closure and a good karmic practice. And the hardest one of all: Don’t try again after you’ve done these things once. Bury what's dead and move on to greener pastures.


  1. I'm so behind this. I actually think it's a good idea to go off the social media grid for awhile when you're going thru a break up. As a friend recently pointed out to me, the people who are constantly posting things are the ones that aren't out living their lives as much and are more concerned with posting things looking like they're having fun. It will also make your former S.O. wonder what you're up to. There doesn't need to be an entire moratorium on social media but i'd post sparingly and reserve the use on really good posts that aren't related to your ex directly or indirectly.

  2. i love this post, totally agree with all the tips and the manslations are hilarious! Agree with 20 LA wannabe that it's best to keep the ex guessing. Though a couple really hot photos (not selfies) wouldn't hurt :)

  3. This is just too brilliant. Thank you. How many people have we all had to block for their continuous onslaught of passive aggressive song lyrics. You know what? I wish YOU'd step back from THAT ledge, my friend.

  4. Wow. Love the manslations + entire post!! Completely concur: Always good to go off the grid! :)