Friday, July 31, 2015


There's an old saying that, "You can pick your friends, you can pick your nose, but you can't pick your family." And you can't pick your friend's nose either, but that's not where I'm going with this.

These days, when everyone seems to be a Facebook philosopher, liking and sharing each others posts, purporting to be a happy member of a wonderful Facebook family, it occurs to me that interfacing with your pseudo Facebook friends and family tends to be effortless and usually amusing. One merely has to scroll passed posts that are boring, displeasing, negative, stress inducing, or downright crazy or offensive points of view. Not so in the real world with your real family. Interacting with real friends and real family members, as flawed and imperfect as they (or you) may be, is tough!

Worst of all, having to deal face to face with disagreeable friends and family members sometimes forces us to question ourselves a bit, rather than simply scrolling passed the conflict. For this reason its easy to let ourselves slip into treating strangers like family and family like strangers through the magic of today's social media. When you think about it, that behaviour is hardly consistent with the glowing Facebook profiles that we have worked so hard to create for ourselves and profess to be the "real us."

Typically, our profiles and pages depict perfect pictures of perfect children, spouses, pets, jobs, pastimes, vacations and philosophies.
We re-post trendy words of wisdom that decree that we as "forty somethings" shall no longer tolerate negativity in our lives and shall surround ourselves with only positive, like-minded, forward thinking individuals (like ourselves of course).

The reality is that while this ideology is well intended and great advice in a perfect Facebook world, its practice in the real world is challenging at best and impossible at worst. We don't all have great bosses, co-workers, fellow commuters, creditors, hair days, and the sun does not always shine. You get the idea.
When it comes to family, whether they are blood, through marriage, or even become family by circumstance, we cannot be so lofty as to ignore, disown, or distance ourselves when the going gets tough. For one thing, this would be so unlike our social media personalities, right? There is some good in all of us. We sometimes just have to work at it to appreciate real friends and family. And there's just two things to keep in mind.

First, its a fact that you can't pickem!

And second, even in these modern times, family matters!