We’ve all heard people long for Facebook’s lawless pre-parent days. Back then, it was anything goes — a land filled with photos of keg stands without consequence and all the cussing you could muster. Those people are wrong. Facebook is better with mums.
Mums are awesome. Mums on Facebook are even more awesome. Do they embarrass you? Probably. Should you care? No way. Everyone’s mum is on Facebook, understanding what exactly it is to varying degrees, enjoying a tiny window into their children’s lives.
You might argue mums don’t use Facebook right. But there is no book on how to use Facebook. (Actually there is and there are definitely mums out there who have read it, and that’s just great.) Any way they want to use it — whether it’s writing something on your wall that they could just say over a text or posting a picture of you in your awkward phase — is exactly the right way to use Facebook.
Remember that technology is your first language. The woman who birthed you had to learn it later in life. So there’s a slight disconnect in the way she Facebooks, as if she’s speaking a tongue she had to study to master. She might be fluent, but every once in a while you hear a telltale hint of an accent peek through. But that’s something that should be celebrated.
For example, here’s a list of things my mother does on Facebook. Dollars to doughnuts, your mum has similar habits:
- Posts pictures of me.
- Posts pictures of my siblings.
- Posts pictures of my nieces and nephew.
- Posts articles (if and only if they have my byline).
- Lets friend requests fester forever because “[passing acquaintance] has no business looking at photos of [her] grandkids.”
- Likes all of my photos, all at once.
- Scolds me when I curse.
Years ago, the equivalent of a lot of these things this would be you drawing a picture of your house that looks like a sad pile of water trash, and your mother praising it, framing it, and slapping it prominently on the wall. Your mum is proud of you, as she should be. That’s going to manifest itself online, and it’s incredibly endearing.
Resistance to mums on Facebook is futile. They’re on it, and they’re not going anywhere. I’m Facebook friends with the mothers of some of my friends. Some are more active on the ‘book than others, but you get the sense that they like being friends with you to have a glimpse into their child’s life, especially if that child lives in a different city. Sure, their Facebook habits are sometimes odd and sometimes embarrassing, but so are yours. So is everyone’s. And we should embrace that.