Birthday posts generate anxiety for Facebook users

Alison Morrison, Staff Writer

When doing the rounds of my social media websites, it’s hard to avoid the pesky notifications from Facebook indicating that your camp-friend’s-friend-you-met-once-yet-still-friended’s birthday is today.

This starts the age-old conundrum of how to phrase your “happy birthday” post. Do you capitalize anything? Do you include the person’s name? The options are endless, and I’m left at 11:50 p.m. on your birthday biting my nails, hoping I picked the right option for our relationship.

Here’s a breakdown of some of your options:

The all-lowercase “happy birthday” with no name.

This type of post is definitely the least amount of effort. Typically used when a mutual friend that you friended pops up in your notifications, this option provides that casual go-to post for people you don’t quite know in person.

The capitalized “Happy Birthday *insert name here*!!”

Always a classic option. Used to achieve that “trying-not-to-try” look, this is my go-to post. Short and sweet, it lets the person know that you notice the little things and that you took the time to craft a birthday post for their wall.

The number of exclamation points is up to you.  Choosing one versus two doesn’t really show that much more commitment, but adding 10,000 takes extra time and can show the person how much you care.

Lastly, the all capitalized “HAPPY BIRTHDAY OMG” with hearts and emojis – the whole shebang.

Just shy of the posts littered with pictures of the two of you from the first day you met until now, this post is almost as enthusiastic as it gets. Usually, this option is used when you are in a bit of a rush and want to show your enthusiasm without dredging up the family childhood photo albums.

Now, these aren’t even close to all of the options out there. From no capitals and no exclamation points to a multimedia extravaganza worthy of an award, your options are pretty much endless.

More often than not, however, I end up telling myself that I’ll post on someone’s wall when I get home from school and promptly forget about it. So if I haven’t posted on your wall, I apologize.

When picking your posting poison, consider what you’re comfortable with, what you think the person would like most and how much time you have to craft the masterpiece everyone deserves. I’ll be hoping I get home and remind myself in time to post anything before midnight rolls around and it’s not your birthday anymore.