I am terrible at staying in touch with people.
Terrible. Just truly, truly awful.
There are a few people I keep in touch with well. I call them while I’m driving. I call my aunt, I call my mom, I call my brother. I think my aunt is sort of resigned to being my driving buddy, her first question is always, “Where are you headed?” My brother and I text funny stuff to each other now and then. I keep in touch with my dad, we go to the gym together a few times a week. Oh, and my boyfriend. We keep in touch pretty well considering we live with one another.
Beyond my immediate family (and my aunt), I am absolutely dreadful at keeping up with people.
There are some people that I really wish I did a better job of keeping in touch with. One of them would be my roommate from college, who used to live about an hour and half from me but has taken to moving all over the eastern half of the country since graduation. Another is my French penpal, who I started talking to weeks after I started taking French. I stayed with him and he showed me around Toulouse when I was in France. Earlier this year he visited NYC with his family and I met him there.
I have all sorts of friends from college I wish I had done a better job keeping up with, my host from France, maybe some fellow study-abroad students, a few friends I had in high school even.
In some ways I think Facebook makes keeping in touch harder. It’s sort of a soft way of falling out of touch; as long as neither of us unfriends the other, we still see a stream of things the other is doing, gradually fading as we stop interacting (I’m sure this is a part of Facebook’s algorithm), occasionally getting the weird blast to the past when a particular status gets a bajillion likes (she got married, he had a kid) and rises to the top (this, too, is surely a part of the algorithm).
Why would we bother sending thoughtful emails, interrupting one another’s days with phone calls, when we can just log onto Facebook and get an instant update on everything that’s going on?
If we have Facebook for the foreseeable future, will everyone forget what it was like to truly keep in touch with somebody?
I just typoed, but I sort of like it. Maybe Facebook is for straying in touch. At first we stay in touch, and then we stray.