The Morning After: An Open Letter to People I Un-Followed During the Election

It's been a particularly rough election season if you spend any time at all on social media. Worse than Farmville, worse than exercise tweets and worse than food photos, the presidential election seems to have brought out the most annoying in many, especially relatives you rarely talk to and "friends" you haven't seen since high school.

The temptation is to extricate these people from your online life, but it can be a complicated equation. How awkward is Thankgiving going to be if you un-followed your aunt over that pro Tea Party rant or what will happen at the high school reunion if you blocked that buddy who was convinced only the Green Party could lead us into the future.

If you are like me, you probably just hid them from your time line or put them on mute on Twitter, but if you did stop following some people or even block someone, now is your chance to bury the hatchet. Here's my open letter to those on my list. Feel free to use for yourself.

Dear Friend/Follower,

As a fellow denizen of the social media universe, I would like to say how much I appreciate your participation in my online life. I find your [common post such as: inspirational sunset banners] and [common image or video post such as: photos of every meal you eat] just so, what's the word, wonderful. We're kindred spirits, you and I, with our tweets and posts and Instagrams. It's heartening, really.

But, a few months ago, I was forced to block you after your rant about [insert political candidate name or cause]. I'm sure you understand that we can't agree on everything. Oh, sure, we both really enjoyed [insert TV show or movie like Here Comes Honey Boo Boo] and love making jokes about [insert something you find funny like Klingons or hipsters], but our political opinions just seem to diverge. And that's OK. This is America and while we may not agree on [insert candidate name or cause] or [insert controversial topic like whether there should be beans in chili], we can both agree that opinions are what make this country great...that and [insert name of attractive woman if both of you are men, attractive man if you are both women or simply "kittens!"].

So, in the spirit of reconciliation, I'd like for us to be [Facebook / Twitter / Instagram / MySpace (seriously?)] friends again. And I promise to do my best not to openly discuss politics with you or anyone else online if you can try to do the same. It's détente!

While we are on the topic, I'd also like to request you refrain from the following topics: religion or lack therof, children, food, the economy, your exercise routine, counting your blessings, how much you hate [insert brand name such as Walmart or Starbucks here] or [insert name of sports team they love but you hate]. Mainly, it would be great if you stuck with funny YouTube videos of people falling down and...well, that's it really. It is so easy if we stick with the rules. That way, I won't have to un-follow you again...until the next election.

Thanks so much for being my friend. Never change...but, seriously, you really do need to change.


[Your Name or Handle]

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