Imagine: you’ve just broken up with your boyfriend of two years. It was difficult enough having to come to this decision with just the two of you, but then you have to tell all your friends and family, too. These people are important to you, so it’s not that big of a deal, and you can tell them with only moderate uncomfortableness. And you think, “Thank goodness that’s over with! Maybe we’ll never speak of it again and we can forget about the relationship entirely!” But then it dawns on you: you made the brilliant decision of sharing your relationship on Facebook for all to see, even the friends you added back in high school who you never even talk to anymore and you’re pretty sure they’re using a picture that’s not even them because they’ve taken up catfishing (or they’ve just drastically changed their looks, but you wouldn’t know since you don’t even know them anymore). Either way, whether you want to or not, you’ll have to update them. Because you’re going to have to change your relationship status or risk looking like you’re not ready to let go of your ex. Then you’ll get all the nosy people, those you might consider “acquaintances” who’ll suddenly consider themselves your friend and confidant, hit you up via messenger and before you know it, you’re reliving your painful break-up all over again. Not to mention all the pictures you suddenly have to delete, and all the new pictures that you’re forced to witness on your News feed your ex will post when he’s out having fun without you. It’s a nightmare.
Thankfully, you only have to imagine this, and no longer have to live through it. Last week, Facebook announced they’re testing new features to help people deal with their breakups a little easier on the site. The company explained in a statement, “This work is part of our ongoing effort to develop resources for people who may be going through difficult moments in their lives. We hope these tools will help people end relationships on Facebook with greater ease, comfort and sense of control.” If you’re not ready to take the drastic measure of deleting them completely off your friends list, Facebook will now let you change your settings to see less of them (or none at all) on your News Feed, so you won’t have to be updated when they’ve found someone new, or when they’ve started moving on in life without you. They also won’t show your ex as a suggestion for photo tagging when you upload a new one, and they won’t show up in your photo memories section. You can also change your privacy settings, so you can decide who can see your updates or not- which means when you take the leap of changing your relationship status, those nosy high school “friends” don’t need to know a thing. These are just the first few options of a potential plethora of break-up friendly settings on Facebook, and we’re excited. Facebook, thanks for finally getting us.