I was having a great day until I logged on Facebook… Not being invited

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Before Facebook, we went on our oblivious merry way, not knowing about something we weren’t invited to.

People had no means to broadcast their social lives. They couldn’t actively promote themselves and their popularity.

Before social media, we had no way of knowing or seeing what everyone was up to.

It’s so much different now.

Have you ever logged onto Facebook and found out about an outing you weren’t invited to?

What about seeing a bunch of neighbors tagged in a post but you seem to be the only one in the group who wasn’t invited?

Whatever people’s motives are for posting and tagging when they know others are left out, it hurts those who aren’t tagged or pictured.

Think of those girls’ nights outs or a lunch that no one mentioned — there it is on Facebook.

Then there are the parties… oh those parties. Maybe your kid didn’t get invited to another kid’s bash, or maybe you weren’t included at that party that seems everyone else was invited to.

Damn, that stings. And stinks. You now have this information, and you wish you didn’t.

It puts you in a bad mood and starts to ruin your day. It gets into your head. You start spinning thoughts and getting a bit obsessive.

{Update to reader: You are not alone. This is a very popular post on our site, especially around the holidays.}

Feeling badly after logging onto Facebook

Facebook sometimes brings on emotions we wouldn’t have if we didn’t log on.

It’s bad enough learning a bunch of your friends went out to dinner or wherever without you, but now you get to see all of them tagged and pictured right before your very eyes.

Even worse? Everyone else in Facebookland — including those tagged — soon realize You Weren’t Invited.

It’s embarrassing. You sit there wishing you never logged onto Facebook.

But at the same time, you start trying to piece together the outing….

So and so was invited and I wasn’t?! When did she become part of this group? Are they all better friends with each other than I am?”

And…

Could this be for some meeting of some sort? Do they all live on the same block? Perhaps all their husbands are great friends, and they were all doing something together too?”

But try as you might, you realize, no… you just weren’t invited.

You weren’t invited for whatever reason or maybe no reason at all. Maybe everyone thought someone else was inviting you. Maybe they wanted to keep it small.

Remember: things aren’t always as they seem.

And more obsessing…

Could it be someone didn’t want to invite you? Why?

You really just have no idea. All you know is you too should have been invited, included, mentioned, tagged, and pictured but you weren’t.

Life before Facebook

Back in the day — BF: Before Facebook — if we happened to find out about a party or a lunch or girls’ night of some kind, we used to be able to have our own pity party alone.

Chances are, we wouldn’t have found out about the event to begin with.

If somehow someone let it slip, and we did find out, it would be more minor because it was less public.

Those included/invited — and everyone else in Facebookland — wouldn’t know that you know you weren’t invited.

Remember just over a decade ago when people went about their business without Sharing and Posting and Tagging and Bragging?

Remember those blissfully awesome days when we lived anonymously?

We were focused on the moment.

Back to when we weren’t busy taking and posting photos and then incessantly checking our phones for Likes and Comments?

Gosh, how I miss those days. You wouldn’t know what you weren’t invited to.

In the same vein, you could invite who you wanted and no one else would know about it.

People lived in blissful ignorance. We were busy doing what we were doing and not watching and commenting on and worrying what everybody else is doing.

We weren’t busy curating a public social image of ourselves.

But now, Facebook multiplies and compounds everything.

Feeling excluded and being excluded now include literally seeing yourself excluded. These are now all real things.

How it happens

And these things happen when you least expect them to.

You are going about your day and decide to pop onto Facebook for a few minutes. You see in your News Feed that a bunch of moms in your “circle” have gone out without you.

They’re all tagged and pictured in the Post.

not being invited to something you see on Facebook

Everyone starts commenting about the great time they had.

This little (big) outing could be anything.

It could be everyone meeting at a restaurant on the first day of school. It could be a big meet up at the pool.

Maybe it’s a bunch of moms tagged for the release of a new movie or a new restaurant opening.

No one invited you. Now everyone knows about it, including you.

They didn’t invite you, so now what?

So you’ve logged on, and you see all of these women in this Facebook post staring you in the face and now what?

Save face

Every situation is unique. Know your goal above all is to save face.

You may already feel pathetic or upset; there’s no reason to look that way.

Don’t dig

Please don’t dig for information.

You don’t need to start asking around about this outing trying to piece together the details. Remember, you want to be confident and protect your dignity.

Wait

Take a day or two before acting. It’s natural to want to react in this situation.

Don’t. There’s no rush.

Sometimes after a good night’s sleep, some exercise, and/or a call with a trusted person outside of this group can give you some perspective.

Really, take your time before doing something you will regret. You won’t be able to take it back.

Do you Like a post for something you weren’t invited to?

Are you supposed to click Like and acknowledge it?

This may help you look to be the better person or you may look pathetic. Again, it depends on the situation.

Do you make a Comment?

After many discussions around this subject with women who have been on all sides of this (at times the host, at times the invited, and at times the excluded)….

We all agree nothing good can come from making a Comment on a post for something you weren’t invited to (but should have been invited to).

What would you say? “I hope you had fun!”

Of course they had fun; that’s why they are rubbing it in everyone else’s faces by posting about it.

What you want to say, of course, is, “Why the hell didn’t you invite me to this shindig?! I thought we were friends!”

What do these comments gain you? Nothing. Do Not Comment!

All you will do is embarrass yourself.

Do you do pretend you didn’t see the post?

You have the option to do nothing and pretend you didn’t see it.

This will help them save face by not having to mention it when they see you next and helps to ensure you save face.

Like the post if you absolutely feel you must but in all my friends’ experiences after many discussions around this subject, we’ve all concluded it’s usually better to just pretend you didn’t see the post.

Staying positive after feeling badly about a Facebook post

Work with all your might to refocus your energies into something positive.

Know that even though we are adults, it’s normal to feel hurt when we are excluded from something.

Take a walk around the block. Jog in place. Do jumping jacks. Box. Clean something.

Get moving somehow. You likely won’t be able to sit still.

Don’t start raiding the chocolate ice cream.

Facebook should bring you joy, not make you sad.

But we know, boy do we know, how hard this can be, and how hurtful this can be.

Being a mom on Facebook

It’s hard being a mom in the 21st century. There’s a lot we have to deal with.

These hurtful Facebook scenarios make me reflect on generations’ past, and my own mother’s experience dealing with moms.

Weren’t they lucky?! They didn’t know when friends excluded them.

For all we have now, I sometimes wish we had the anonymity and privacy they had.

Too bad it has to be all or nothing.

They didn’t invite you

No matter how badly you feel, seek out people who build you up, not bring you down.

Start finding a group of people who may be more crowd.

Remember, you don’t have to wait around. You can be the one to send out the invitations.

 

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