PostedOct 13, 2015
I used to be that girl. You know, the one you’d always see making some horrendous face while simultaneously taking a Snapchat selfie. My specialty was sending the photos nobody wanted to see—triple chins, food-in-mouth, eyes rolled in the back of my head. Basically, any kind of snap that would make you say ‘yikes,’ take a screenshot and save for an embarrassing birthday Instagram collage. Snapchat was a serious form of communication for me and my friends, until I made the unpopular and uncommon decision to delete the app from my phone and my life last month. I broke up with Snapchat.
Here’s why. Somewhere between the triple chins and the constant watching of other people’s Snapchat stories, the app started to feel more like a burden and less like a silly way to keep up with friends. It became another thing on my to do list. I knew if I opened a snap, my friends could see that, and they would expect something in return. I’d feel guilty if I didn’t respond in a reasonable amount of time. So, I got to a point where I simply stopped opening them. That was great for a while, but the little red number superimposed on the Snapchat ghost logo informing me of how many unopened Snapchats I had stressed me out. Eventually, when I’d get a new snap from someone, I would actually get annoyed.
Who needs one more stupid excuse to stare at their iPhone screen like zombie Kendall Jenner at an Estee Lauder party? Definitely not me. When I’m not scrolling through Instagram feed like a maniac, I’m stalking people on Facebook or checking my horoscope. Snapchat was just one more thing I didn’t need in my life, so I decided to cut the cord completely.
It’s weird being Snapchatless in the 21st Century after it’s consumed your life for two years. Surprisingly, I feel a lot of FOMO. Like my friends are all in on some joke that I’m not aware of. It’s kind of like death. I might have “died” on Snapchat, but the world’s still turning and my friends are still sending each other snaps even though I’m not around anymore. A lot of people are mad at me for deleting the app, of course. Now they have to go out of their way to send me an actual message (god forbid) instead of a mass Snapchat. I’m such a hassle.
Another unexpected part of the aftermath is that I feel like I’m not as close to some of my friends as I was when I had Snapchat. Sending consistent snaps to old friends throughout the day made it seem like we weren’t so far apart. But now that we’re not communicating via Snapchat, we’ve stopped communicating almost completely. I never realized that the app was the glue holding a few long-distance friendships together, which I guess is a sign that I need to be better at maintaining friendships.
Most of all, though, I feel free without Snapchat. Call me crazy, but it’s nice NOT knowing what flavor ice cream your friend is eating or what Usher song someone is lip syncing in the car. It’s a relief not to wake up to unnecessary Snapchat notifications and feel obligated to respond with a grumpy selfie. The freedom I feel far outweighs any feelings of FOMO I might occasionally get.
As I was writing this, a friend ironically texted me and said “Snapchat misses you.” I responded, with conviction, “The feeling’s not mutual.”
Words by Eliza Dillard
Article via Styleite
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