I've read profiles where 'Friends' have to meet certain criteria to be friended, or profiles where someone makes a disclaimer "Don't feel bad if I don't friend you back". Lately I've heard of one LJ where this weirdo apparently went around friending hot girls, all of whom made posts asking to be removed from his F-list.
So how does this work?
For me, I tend to friend anyone who asks, or who friends me first. There are some exceptions to this rule - I was friended by people before and NEVER (not once!) heard from them, so I didn't really return the favor. That said, I'm not going to go around asking people to take me off their list if they've added me. I'm honored that they want to read regularly.
I usually ask before friending someone - occassionally while friending someone. I think that's just good form, although I'll admit that I always hope they'll find me interesting and friend me back.
And what about de-friending?
This is where it gets tricky.
I've been on people's lists and seen a post like: "I'm sorry, but my F-list is out of control and I don't have time to keep up with it all. I'm going to have to cull some people; please don't take it personally."
Been there, been culled. Doesn't hurt my feelings. I have commented back and said, "Oh, sorry I didn't make the cut" and been re-friended. That's nice.
I've also had other friends remove mututal friends, and it always seemed like they talked to them privately and explained why - everyone parts with understanding, and the mutual friends are not caught in the middle. I think that's good form, too.
I've been quietly de-friended, and I don't know what to do. Suddenly, I find EGO hard at work here.
It was a new friend, so I guess she didn't owe me much by way of explanation. Still, I thought she seemed super-cool and I was looking forward to getting to know each other more. When I noticed I was no longer her 'Friend', I found myself struggling with many new feelings and doubts:
* Is it because I got sick right after we friended each other, and didn't comment regularly? (I did get mostly caught up...)
* Is it because I started posting more about my FlyLady thing and no longer held her interest?
* Did I inadvertantly insult her? (This is a fun one - sending me scrambling back through not just my own archives, but hers and any mutual friends and communities).
Now ordinarily I'm not like this, so I hate discovering this needy, frightened aspect of myself.
But I am in a quandry.
This friend requested being put on my kink filter, and since (as mentioned) I thought she was super-cool, I added her. Now, Friending me is a prerequisite to being on my kink filter. If you're not willing to 'friend' me, I'm just not willing to share my most intimate details with you. Petty? Not really, I don't think.
But now she's de-friended me, and I'm wondering what to do. It seems inappropriate to comment and say, "Hey, I just noticed that you took me off your friend-list. Why?" Especially given that we were new friends who don't know each other that well anyway. I am still commenting to her, though I haven't gotten a response (hm...maybe I did inadvertantly insult her) and she's still on my f-list.
I do really feel silly saying anything to her. So I just quietly removed her from my kink filter. I do wonder if I should comment and say, "Hey, I noticed that you de-friended me, so while I enjoy keeping you as my friend and commenting to you, I've removed you from my kink filter. No hard feelings."
Have any of you been in this situation (or one similar)? How do you handle the delicate balance that is online friending?
Thanks for your input! I'll look forward to hearing everyone's views on this.