On Friendship and Facebook

It was a school friend who invited me onto Facebook in early 2008. I was interested, but didn't really see the possibilities, until I lost my job the following December. Within a few months my son had been diagnosed with aspergers syndrome and I was working with the Child Benefit protest group PACUB, and Facebook became the hub for special needs support and on-line campaigning.

PACUB is now dormant, but the friendships I made are not, and some have now become autism mums too. And it is the autism mums that I turn to on a daily basis because even though I also have a severely disabled daughter, it is autism that dominates my life.

On Facebook we celebrate the successes, discuss the problems and support each other through the difficult times. We also laugh, we share information, sometimes we disagree, but I have never experienced any of the drama that others complain about. And we meet in real life too, to relax with others who "get" it, to help each other, and to have fun too.

Many of my closest on-line friends also write, and Monday night this week saw a blogging reunion when I met up with Jazzyville and Bright Side of Life, who lives in South Africa but is currently visiting Ireland. Even though we often talk on Facebook, the evening passed far too quickly, and I really hope we can do it again sometime soon.

This week I also visited a Facebook friend from the West of Ireland who was at the children's hospital for a few days. It was wonderful to see her again and meet her son and to be able to provide a bit of help and support.

Of course I've added real life friends to Facebook too, it's an easier way to keep in touch than playing telephone tag when we all have such busy lives. I love that I'm in touch with friends from long ago, and family who live in other countries. It's great to add friends from real life that you don't see as often as you would like, to share details of events and things of interest, or even to prepare for meetings such as the one I attended on Tuesday evening.

It's been a busy week...

Today I'm taking a break, special needs mum styleee - I seem to have caught a virus and I need to rest up for a few hours to make sure that I can cope with whatever the rest of the day has in store.

So while I give out about Facebook all the time, I also recognise that my life as a carer is much richer for its existence and my children have benefited too, from all the advice and information that is available. It's my first reasons to be cheerful for this week.

And despite some difficulties, I have more reasons too:


  • A successful 15th birthday party for my son.

  • I finally bought some plants to brighten up the back.

  • A book arrived for review. So I have to get back to reading now!


Hope you have a good week, and head over to Lakes Single Mum for more happy posts.



Reasons to be Cheerful

16 comments:

  1. Good reasons! I must get some plants too....and now I want a fried egg on toast!!!!! Enjoy your rest and get well soon. X

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    1. Simple foods are often the best aren't they? And the rest was lovely :) x

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  2. Facebook can be a real life saver and great for finding folks with something in common. Love your other reasons too

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    1. I am so thankful for it and the lovely people - and bloggers - that I have connected with as a result.

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  3. I'm sorry you have a virus love, I hope you are on the mend real soon. Mich x

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    1. I staged a work-to-rule for the last two days: doing little more than cooking, washing up and looking after the children. It seems to have worked :) x

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  4. Hope you're feeling better now, viruses are never easy to deal with as well as everything else.
    I resisted joining FB until last December but agree it's a great way of keeping in touch and finding others who just "get" life with autism x

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    1. You did resist for a long time! Facebook certainly annoys me at times, but as a carer I would hate to be without it x

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  5. Glad Son had a great 15th birthday party.

    Loved reading about your Facebook campaigning and telephone tag.

    Hope work-to-rule went well.

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    1. Working to rule always gives me a break, of sorts.

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  6. I also resisted fb for a long time because you don't get it until you join. I agree with all your fb reasons too. Well done on a successful party and I hope you're feeling better. xxx

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    1. You're right about Facebook, though I don't think it's for everyone xxx

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  7. Hope you're soon back to full fitness x

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  8. HELLO, waving from South Africa! What a lovely surprise to read this post. Our evening with you and Jazzy was so lovely. Really wished we lived closer as I have no doubt that we would spend a lot more time together! Allan has already been researching flights to Ireland for another visit! :-)

    P.S. So sorry that I haven't visited your blog for a while. xx

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    1. Great news about Allan wanting to come back, we didn't frighten him off then :) xx

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