Facebook friend rejection hurts

Psychologists believe having a Facebook friend request turned down is as painful as real life rejection

Are you still waiting for a Facebook friend request to be accepted? Being ignored online has the same detrimental effect as real life rejection.

Psychologists suggest that for many of us the internet and social media are as real as the world around us.

‘If you’ve ever felt bad about being ignored on Facebook, you’re not alone,’ says Professor Joshua Smyth from Penn State.

‘Facebook – with its approximately 800 million users – serves as a place to forge social connections however it is often a way to exclude others without the awkwardness of face-to-face interaction.’

The team found that people experience similar psychological reactions when ignored online as they do face-to-face exclusion and the feeling of rejection was felt regardless of whether the snubbing was real or via the web.

The findings suggest that our culture may not differentiate between in-person and online experiences as much as we might think.

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