My Ex & I Tried To Have A Joint Facebook Account & It Ruined Our Relationship

My ex and I had been dating for five months and we’d already hit several major relationship milestones. I had a key to his place that I sometimes used and we’d told each other we loved each other, so when he suggested we create a joint Facebook account, I thought it was a great idea that would only bring us closer. Wrong!

  1. It looked strange to our friends. Why the heck would we need to join forces and use one account to contact our friends and family? They were confused and I’m sure we looked really stupid to them. One of my close friends asked me if everything was OK between my BF and I. That should have been the first warning sign.
  2. It just felt weird. Every time I wanted to post something on Facebook, I had to do so from the joint account. It got weird because my BF wanted us to do everything together from that account—every picture we uploaded and every status we updated had to be a joint action, one we did together. WTF? We were practically handcuffed to each other!
  3. I lost myself. I couldn’t just have a space that was mine and mine alone. I had to share everything Facebook-related with this guy. I was no longer Giulia, I was Giulia and Billy. Everyone started referring to us by that name and it was nauseating.
  4. It looked like we were hiding or overcompensating for something. You know, like an affair or some other infidelity. I mean, why else would we have to try so hard to look super-connected and in love? I’m sure our followers were thinking the same thing, especially when they saw all our cozy holiday snaps. I soon realized what my friend had meant when she’d asked if my BF and I were OK.
  5. We were trying to be perfect. Sometimes social media can mess with your head, making you want to come across as absolutely perfect to all your friends and followers. I think that’s what was happening with us. We cared too much about how the world saw us, but we weren’t really focused on the quality of our relationship.
  6. We were “fake connecting.” We were connecting on Facebook, but when last had we really connected with each other in real life? I’d always thought our relationship was solid, but now that I really looked at it, I wasn’t so sure. We were so used to being together that I don’t know if we really were right for each other. It took seeing our cheesy joint Facebook account to realize that maybe we weren’t really as amazing as we thought (or wanted to be seen as being).
  7. It made me realize I’d compromised too much. I noticed that we could have a joint Facebook account really easily because we had all the same friends. Um, where were all my own friends? When had I lost touch with so many people? Creating a joint account with my boyfriend made me see that I’d sacrificed a lot for this relationship, and it made me feel horrible.
  8. It caused a lot of fights. I didn’t want my boyfriend to read through my private messages to friends with whom I was closer than he was. I mean, it wasn’t like I was hiding something—I just wanted some damn privacy! But no, it came across to him as though I were being sneaky. Damn it.
  9. I felt claustrophobic. After a while of this, I started to notice that we were too close—not just on social media but in real life too. We did everything together and sometimes he bored me. I was anxious around him a lot and our joint Facebook account was making me feel even more anxious. WTF was happening?
  10. It was time to delete it. I told my BF that I didn’t like all the negative things that were happening since we joined forces on Facebook. I tried to explain that I wanted to have more of my own life instead of feeling like I was losing my identity by being with him.
  11. He took it badly. I guess he thought I was saying I didn’t want to be with him anymore, but that wasn’t the case. I just needed to have my own life in the relationship: my own friends, my space, and some things that were personal, like a bank account and private bathroom time. I think social media should be part of that list!
  12. We couldn’t seem to compromise. Although we went back to our separate Facebook accounts (thank goodness), we just couldn’t meet each other halfway on these issues. My BF seemed to want to be super-close to me all the time and I felt like I was being strangled. I wanted him to back off a little but he didn’t get that needing a bit of breathing space didn’t have to be about breaking up. Although we stayed together for another month, it was clear that we approached relationships completely differently. It wasn’t going to work for us to be together in the long run, so we had to delete our offline relationship too.
Giulia Simolo is a writer from Johannesburg, South Africa with a degree in English Language and Literature. She has been working as a journalist for more than a decade, writing for sites including AskMen, Native Interiors, and Live Eco. You can find out more about her on Facebook and LinkedIn, or follow her on Twitter @GiuliaSimolo.