Guilt by Association

Let me start this off these confessions: I don't take rejection well and I have a hard time letting people go even if they are toxic. I hate saying goodbye even when it's no longer a good thing. I am a totally softie under my cold, hard exterior (Ha!). Case and point last year I had to finally accept that one of my dearest high school friends no longer wanted to be my friend (I was about 7 years late in finding this out…LOL). She had made that choice by her actions and her words. Instead of accepting it for what it was I tried to hang on for years... This only created drama that lasted throughout college, my wedding and so on. However, this is old news so I digress and will move on. This is what made this even harder.

So here's the issue in a nutshell…I joined twitter. Yep, that's pretty much it. LOL! In twitter's defense I met a lot of cool people and have something to do if I ever find myself bored out of my mind. But in general twitter has made me slightly less awesome. I discourage all who dare to consider it. *wink*

I have blogged here numerous times about my fascination and my falling off of social networking (mainly twitter). Social networking is full of people who hide behind there technology gadgets and say whatever they want because no one knows the real them. They show you only what they want you to see. Most lead simple lives and like to share their simple thoughts (yes, guilty as charged). Occasionally during social networking people's worlds collide. I know people who have met their husbands/wives on twitter, best friends, and/or next baby mamas/daddies on twitter. Whatever the case sometimes social networking can give you a happy ending. But what do you do when the ending is not so happy? Most people would tell you it's social networking get over it, but what happens if your worlds have already collided? What happens when this becomes real life?

What happens?! Confrontation. Story Time (short version): …there was a fallout among tweeps (twitter peeps). Some things were said and done that caused a lot of damage. People's feelings were hurt, people were unfollowed, unfriended, and cast out of twitter circles. I mean the reality is we are all human and we are bound to bump heads once in a while. I believe each side had their hand in the pot stirring up trouble. I do not like drama or theatrics. I believe in private constructive confrontation if possible, so when this ensued I was no where to be found. Honestly after everything I decided to limit my social networking time.

So today while thumbing through my contacts I was realized that I was following someone who wasn’t following me (thanks, Twidroyd!!). Which means I had been unfollowed, quick FB check I had been unfriended too…Now in all fairness this is not the first time someone has unfollowed or unfriended me. Most times I could care less because I rarely notice and if I do it's not a huge deal. The last time I noticed I promptly addressed the person (another story for another time). And I guess I shouldn't care since I am not on twitter that much now, but it does because of the reasons I mentioned in my confession above. It matters because our worlds collided. I know the unfollow and unfriend was done out of guilt by association. It was emotionally and maliciously done, and it was done by someone who is afraid to be honest and say that, but have no fear I know the truth (in a sense I have set you free by telling it…you may thank me now).

The simply fact is that I decided not to choose sides (and not to unfollow anyone), and by doing that I was deemed guilty. The problem I have with guilt by association is it defies my right to be innocent until proven guilty. Don't get me wrong…I believe these old adages that say 'if you lay down with dogs you are bound to get flees," or "you are the company you keep", and 'birds of a feather flock together." All wise sayings that scream one thing, be careful of who you associate yourself with. My guilt is solely based on my unwillingness to choose sides. It is grounded in ill-reasoning and an unjustified point of view. I am not going to rage a war on this because I think in a way we have all been guilty by association before. We have all had times when we were misrepresented by the company we chose to keep the decisions we chose to make. I believe our gavels have sometimes fallen too hard on those who have yet to begin their trial.

The truth is we are all constantly judging people and guilting them by association. I had a hard time unfollowing them even felt a little guilty, but in the end it was the person's choice to get rid of me. I guess I had no choice but to oblige. I have no problem that I was unfollowed or unfriended I wish I would have been judged solely based on my own merits, and not the merits on those who are simply around me. Now that I think about it I have no hard feelings and I care even less now than I did this morning probably because of the lame excuse I was given...but lesson learned.
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