Tough Breakup? Here’s Your Social Media Strategy

There was a brief moment when I turned away from writing fluffy blogs, spawned as they are by a glass of sauv blanc and characterised by overuse of celebrity references and hard-won dating stories.

Instead readers, as incongruous as it sounds, I attempted to focus equivalent energy on trying to be a grown-up and furthering my career in my day job (which is about as far removed from dating blogging as Jennifer Aniston is from a grandchild)

In that phase, about as long-lived as a double episode of The Biggest Loser, I subscribed to all manner of Female CEO/Business Chicks/Glass-Ceiling Busters/Lean-In Coaching sites in effort to educate myself on what was required (without having to invest time and energy in actually attending something in person)

What I understood from this, is that just as every gal in the 90s required a brick-like mobile phone, an embossed business card and a Holden Commodore company car,

1382778_old_brick_cell_phone

the 2014 everywoman needs only this…..

 A Social Media Strategy

Unfortunately, I lost interest in this with similar speed to John Mayer dumping his latest chick-on-the-rebound.

john Mayer

Intead, I spent quality couch-time trying to define the following variant

 A Social Media Strategy For The Newly Heartbroken

I had a vague notion that this should resemble a 12 step program, until I realised that the current era has NO TIME for a 12 step program and I should try to nail the description of this baby in no more than 6.

no time for that

Here goes….

 One – Unfriend

 Upon being ditched (lets assume this is how it went down rather than one of those ‘amicable breakups’ that really means that you got ditched and are being sooooo  brave) you need to immediately de-friend the ex.  You will reap an immediate sense of achievement if you are the first to execute the un-friend transaction.

Secondly, in those moments of Chardonnay-fuelled weakness, this will prevent you scrolling through his FB page analysing every event posted since the moment you broke up.

Hang on – who are we kidding?  You aren’t going to ONLY do this self-destructive trawling in alcohol fuelled moments of weakness, you are going to track that guy over morning coffee before tackling work email, on a lunchbreak over sushi and, if time-pressed, you will skip over those news feed articles that alert you to a cancer-busting diet so that you can scan the feed for entries that are any indication of your ex’s state of mind.  You may think this will only happen for a month, but there is a never-ending stream of trigger events ahead that will have you clutching at those facebook straws.

Tip: Don’t BLOCK the ex.  This will prevent him having any access to your carefully chosen procession of changes to your profile pic which will show you having a riotous time in his absence.

 Two –  Instagram peeping is taboo

 Don’t be getting all righteous about having executed step one while you continue taking sneaky peeks at his instagram account.  Unfollowing his instagram account is an even easier step than defriending on facebook, and equally important in severing that digital umbilical cord.

Don’t compromise the healing of your inner self by un-following him on Instagram and subsequently sneaking peeps of him and his new squeeze using the ‘explore’ function.

You may be just as culpable as the guy who first merged Vodka and Red Bull without realising, that on the whole…

NO GOOD CAN COME OF THIS

 Three – Twitter – unfollow

unfollow

 Again, there is going to be a certain satisfaction in being the first to unfollow.

In fact, my brief entrepreneurial research suggests that if I was vaguely serious about pursing a life beyond my current day job I’d be working day and night on an app that was along the lines of ‘DITCHEM v1.0’ which would allow for instantaneous severing of all FB, Instagram and Twitter ties in a single transaction with an optional pop-up box that allowed for some commentary on dontdatehimgirl.com for a little review narrative just like you do when you’ve had some sub-standard service at a trendy new bar.

Anyhow (let’s count to ten while someone else reserves the domain name ditchem.com) unfollow immediately and try to resist the temptation to check hourly whether he has also unfollowed you.

Same rules apply as above – don’t then be checking his Twitter account manually.

I repeat – no good can come of this.

 Four – avoid the social media stalk of the new chick

 If you have ignored all of the above, you have no one but yourself to blame when, sooner (John Mayer) or later, your replacement makes her appearance.

At this point, you need to make EVERY POSSIBLE EFFORT to avoid doing the stalk on her.

There’s only the tiniest possibility of redemption in this, in the event that you find that she is less athletic, less blonde, less svelte or less accomplished (assuming you also sink to the depths of a Linked-In stalk) than you.  Only in a Nora Ephron movie  (and may the goddess of chick-flicks rest in peace) will this happen.

Even if you have a momentary thrill from the realisation of any of the above, it will be short-lived if your heart is still in a state where it will not be salved by any of the above because the fact is that he is not with you.

All this sounds kinda negative right?

Best that we devote our final two strategies in the half-baked version of the 12-step program to positive social media strategies that you can implement….

 Five – overachieve, very publicly

 If you’ve subscribed to the advice above, you’ve cut some cords.  However, in a strategy so cunning you could put a tail on it and call it a rat (props to Blackadder), we’ve not disconnected you from your various mutual friends.

So this is the time to use your various social media outlets to

  • Post pics at a hot new club opening (even if you are merely a photo-bomb participant with no more than a peep-toe on the red-carpet or fingertip on a velvet rope)
  • Publish commentary on the new activities that you have taken up (salsa dancing, bikram yoga, crossfit anyone?)  Extra points if they are like the examples here and will result in the honing of a hot new body.
  • Overachieve career-wise – talking blithely about your move into managing a team the size of a small suburb (with, of course, the support of a small entourage that you can now regard as your own)

Six – go silent

After doing the overachieve, there’s a distinct advantage in then disappearing entirely off grid.  It gives an air of mystery, of having moved on.

If you still living in the fantasy world of him keeping track of you, you can potentially assume this is giving him some pause to wonder what is keeping you so busy that you can’t even FB

If he has no concept of this because he’s stopped caring about you – as is likely if he did the dumping – then you still have the benefit of being off enjoying life without the compulsion to post about it.

Hint: akin to that tree falling in the foreset- a sunset is still beautiful sunset, even if you don’t get a chance to post it on FB.

So, tuck these hints away in case you even find yourself in the been dumped/need strategy scenario.  Better yet? If you want to hark back to that simpler time of Commodores and Brick Mobiles, go all old-school and don’t just bookmark this post.

Tap into your 90s Officeworks hardware and LAMINATE this sucker.

If you are taking your online dating a little more seriously than this blog, check out this website for fabulously simple online dating advice.

Advertisements

Meeting the parents – second time round

I was starting to feel that my blog was leaning towards pessimism of late.  Did you get that vibe, lovely readers?   Twitter splits, breakup grief, rookie mistakes and fashion faux pas ….It was starting to sound a lot like a Cure album in their more sombre early 80s era.  So this week I was on the hunt for something a little more upbeat – bit more like the ‘Friday I’m in Love’ flavour of blog-topic.

The universe presented me with this via a very entertaining chat with one of my friends about an event, had you not become single in your 40s, you would have left in the archives of ’awkward stuff you do in your 20s’ She described, in colourful language, the joys of  a late-in-life meeting of the new BF’s  parents.

So it’s an upbeat story, in the sense that it demonstrates the clear possibility that you can  enter a relationship so meaningful that you are willing to schmooze up to a set of new potential in-laws.  Again.

Alas, I can’t recount the tale verbatim as it would clearly identify my confidante, so instead I pondered how best to present your credentials to some new elders, when you cross that line into coupledom in your mid 40s.  Here goes:

Fair degree of domestic ability

No student-housing squalor, no frat-house behaviour – at this stage in your life you are likely to understand that a vacuum cleaner bag does need to be emptied at some kind of interval, that a bathroom requires more than just a twice yearly North-Korean style nuking with Exit Mould and that vegetables left unattended in the fridge will indeed turn into a festy and unidentifiable liquid.

In my case, you even have the ability to turn this

shoe crazy

Into this

shoe tidy

in the time it takes to polish off a glass of sauv blanc and listen to a Rod Stewart song.

In addition, I have an ability to turn out a meal.  Even more importantly, I have been taught by maestro Jamie Oliver that ANYTHING you wish to churn out is made remarkable by the simple act of serving it on a wooden board.

food on a board

Life skills people.

No notable meltdowns

With a degree of common sense and a truckload of luck, you are likely to have avoided demonstrating any one of the following destructive behaviours.

An impulsive hairstyle choice and wilful vandalism.

brit

Naff hairband and a shoplifting conviction

ryder

A brush with too many sequins and some OTT competitive spirit.

nancy kerrigan

Or in my case your transgressions fail to attract any kind of public interest and remain off the record.

A rapport with the kiddies

Nothing will cause you to be the subject of a parent’s death stare and accompanying interrogation like the risk that you are not only whisking away their child, but are likely to subvert their grandchildren as well.

If, as in my case, you’ve had a life-long disinclination to spawn any miniature humans of your own, I suspect you will be in for double the drilling, as you lack any credentials whatsoever.  It would probably be preferable that you had an underachieving, substance-dabbling, likely to be perpetually-unemployable-as-an-adult, teen rather than be what was recently phrased in reference to our own prime minister as ‘deliberately barren’…

rant

Ahem.

If needed I would offer up my ability to entertain children all ages, starting with my considerable experience in amusement parks.   I bond with children of all ages – especially over topics such as the perils of trying to keep fairy floss out of one’s abundant hair.

fairy floss

I’m fabulous in any theme park environment…just present me with the kiddie that is content with this and we’ll rotate around in crockery until the cows come home.

teacups

Just not this

spinny ride

…since most of us understand the risk of impromptu and disturbing occurrences  of projectile gastrointestinal upset. On my part.

No ongoing addictions

Sure we’ve all had our brushes with the phrase ‘too many vinos’, sure we’ve all had an occasional table-dancing incident, but at our age we are likely to have unrivaled reflexes in deleting a facebook tagging of photographic evidence and a subsequent de-friending.

If FB doesn’t know…it didn’t happen.

When it comes to obsessive behaviour, my obsession with running is far outweighed by my fixation with carbs, so you won’t see me rock up to family Christmas looking like this either.

nicole richie

So if you do reach relationship nirvana and have to brave the ‘parents meet-n-greet’, take stock of your credentials and go in confidently with the air of someone accomplished and balanced.   Better still, toss down two glasses of red wine, email them your Linked-in profile in advance and do a self-google-stalk to check if you are in the clear.

If you are taking your online dating a little more seriously than this blog, check out this website for fabulously simple online dating advice.

When Twitter knows you’ve split before you do…

It used to be a little simpler to pick up on the signs that your relationship was coming apart at the seams. A gradual drift apart, longer working hours at the office, a moving van appearing unexpectedly at the marital home….

In this era, it is entirely likely that social media is likely to register your impending relationship implosion before you do, and everything you needed to know about your couple-doom will be delivered by this chirpy little fellow.

twitter

For the uninitiated, prone to some new-age rookie mistakes, here are the five twitter clues that might indicate you are headed for #splitsville.

Early warning visuals

Body language is a funny thing, right? A reliable but subtle indicator that all is not well – and Twitter conveniently dishes this right up to you in photographic form. Take these examples….

kardashian body language

At the point you become more interested in holding your handbag with both hands rather than one of your boyfriend’s hands, disaster looms.

It is no defence to cite the fact that said handbag cost you more than a small luxury car.

Slightly further north on the scale of awkward body language is something like this.

body language

Death-ray stare from Katie, something between fear and sheepish from Tom and even the kiddie knows she doesn’t want to be there.

The warning signs need not be pictorial. Some of us have very predictable behaviour around a breakup. Daily infusion of Lindt almond chocolate anyone?

Despite her youth, no one demonstrates more entrenched breakup response behaviour than Taylor Swift. I give you:

  • ‘I knew you were trouble’
  •   ‘Better than revenge’, and
  •  if you were any doubt about potential reconciliation ‘We are NEVER. EVER. getting back together.

So if you were entangled with her and you saw this status

taylor swift-studio

you know its over and another #splitsvillesong is about to hit itunes.

Aberrant behaviour

Next step along from the early warning body language signs are the deliberately posted images of defiant behaviour.

A clear sign that perhaps you are not the same people as you were when you first coupled up is when you wake to a tweet that shows your significant other has morphed from this

hanna montana

To this

aberrant pic cyrus

…potentially in a bid to deliberately move away from the image they knew you fell in love with. If you hadn’t detected the subtle hair and wardrobe change, they are now visually bludgeoning you with it with all the subtlety of a Donatella Versace spray tan.

Alternatively it may come in the form of a reminder that they have joined a new crowd that you are no part of.

miley and the twerking kids

It could even be the simple donning of an outfit/coat of armour that screams I NEVER WANT YOU TO TOUCH ME AGAIN.

aberrant pics kardashian

Cryptic Tweets

Nothing says its over like not saying its over.

The twittersphere abounds with quotes from the vintage sayings of relationship gurus such as Elizabeth Taylor and Marilyn Monroe, to new age chaff that spews forth from the google relationship quote generator faster than you can brew a pot of tea.

obsucre tweets marilyn

obscure tweets - taylor

A touch of obscurity there. With any luck you may be less in the dark if you are on the receiving end of something more robustly obvious like Seal simply tweeting #theend.

Radio silence

There are risks in dating someone who needed to go through tabloid humiliation to learn that flirty texts to someone other than your partner are messy when made public. That said, you might feel that the risk is mitigated when he went on to reform himself into a bit more of a monogamist and moved onto twitter knowing that everything said was public. Hello Shane Warne

If you then proceed to play out your entire lovefest on twitter, the way you will recognise its demise as  this

*crickets*

Complete radio silence –thus proving that someone is obeying Mamma’s advice that if you have nothing nice to say……………

You are unfollowed

Unfollowing someone is the overt gesture that demonstrates that you don’t care to hear from them ever again, even digitally. (although there is nothing to stop you from routinely checking his twitter postings anonymously every hour thereafter. No evidence, and no stalker charges under ANYONE’S  jurisdiction)

If your twitter following is limited to your immediate clan only, it may equate to a number where you will probably notice you’ve lost one and can reciprocate immediately in the hope it gives an air of mutuality to the decision.

If you are Liam Hemsworth, with a following of 443,403, you won’t personally notice a decrement of one, but the entire world media will let you know.

_____________________________________________________________________

If all of this seems to be overwhelming and you feel you lack the savvy and commitment to apply these learnings to your twitter feed, close your account and go back to Facebook.

There’s no room for doubt the day you see this little icon pop up in your feed from your now-former flame.

compressed