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Dize: There are reasons to like social media, too

Many stay away from social media, saying it’s too dangerous …. and it can be. Unless you research a person, you do not know whom you are allowing to be your friend.

Funny, instead of my Facebook picture, for security reasons, I posted the picture of God/Jesus hugging a person. Recently, I wanted to join a club that required my FB picture for identity. So, I changed the picture to me, taken at my Grandson’s Boy Scout event.

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Friend requests from men came out of the woodwork. I was surprised. I researched each request and found no information on them. So, I deleted their request. Curious, I posted a question: “What goes with these people?”

Most replied they didn’t know, but then the answer came through a personal story from a woman who had friended one of these requests. After a while, the new friend asked for her bank account number. Ah ha. It is the same ole, same ole: “show me the money.” They are looking for naïve, trusting, gullible people who will fall for their swindling scheme.

Now comes to the reason I like social media. I get to meet (internet only; not in person) people from around the world.

A while back, the Baltimore Washington Conference UMC sent out a notice for pastors to take a test at the end of a Nielsen book. That test showed that “I loved to learn” and “I love people.” Facebook fills both of those needs.

I’m friends with some witty, intelligent, clever, kind people that I would never have access to otherwise. They post a wide variety of interests, such as some beautiful pictures and funny cartoons. Their personality shows in their language and lack of. Many express sad feelings when they think days are not going well for them and ask for prayers.

Recently, a writer expressed his puzzlement when he flared up aggressively about a person who was out of line. Others blamed him for his flare up. Ah ha. Now I can really get my counselor muscles used.

I love to offer some insight without expecting any counseling payment. I explained, very simply and clearly, the three steps in behavior: Passivity, Assertiveness and Aggression.

He witnessed a person who was saying things that disturbed him but said nothing. When he took all he could, he exploded … to everyone’s surprise. When you are passive, you give your power totally to the other person. When you say something, you care about yourself and them. But when you become aggressive, you only care about yourself.

So, here’s how you fix the situation. When you find yourself getting irritated, tell the other person how what they are saying is affecting you. That’s called assertiveness. Of course, you need to be ready for their reaction.

Basically, be kind. If you don’t want to say anything, then leave the premises. I’ve counseled those who have been uncomfortable at work when, suddenly, they find themselves involved where people are gossiping. Leaving the group is sometimes the best solution.

Basically, privacy is disappearing through FB. People are realizing: all we really want is to be loved.

FB also gives people the opportunity to seek and give spiritual help through written and distance prayers. I find myself mourning now over a FB friend who transitioned in April. Our relationship was only liking each other’s posts. I really miss their LIKES.

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