Why I am off Facebook

I am depressed and dismayed by the amount of venom and hostility which abounds on Facebook, of how any debate is fast reduced to boo! and hurrah! words, how I am besieged by requests to pray for sick children or hunt for lost cats, how I am flooded with stories of pain and destruction or evidence of how the Bad Guys are screwing us over, and endless stories about Jeremy Corbyn, what he said or did or didn’t do or should have done, what the Sun said and what Angelina Jolie said about the Sun: satirical items on the above. Cartoons. Debates on whether satirical items or cartoons are the way to go: and, post-Paris, people changing their profile pictures to the tricolor and others saying they won’t change theirs because it’s not the way to go and the whole crazy spin-off about Islam and hatred of Islam and hatred of Islamophobia and on and on until you can’t hear yourself think.
I have kept going because of these:
Encouragement in times of loneliness. A touch from a friend. A smile. A joke. A shared experience. A conversation. The pleasure of helping someone.
But these are drowned out, overwhelmed by the rest as the traffic drowns out a sidewalk conversation.  And what is the effect on my life?
I find myself logging on to Facebook five or six times a day.  Maybe more: I haven’t checked. I become obsessed with whether people have commented on my posts or replied to my messages.  I get sucked into debates and click on things I don’t need to see.  And above all a particular world-view emerges, depressing, fearful, mistrustful, dismaying.
So I’m off now. I don’t know how long I’ll be gone – as long as I need to.   So if you want to comment make sure you do it on here and not on Facebook, otherwise I won’t see what you’ve written.
I’m going out now.  I may be some time…
Kirk out