Why Do I Post on Facebook?
I recently got a note from someone who asked me a simple question. “What is your actual goal when you put posts on Facebook?” she wrote. “There are many people out there who follow you. What do you actually need?”
Her note made me think about the real reason for keeping up a Facebook page devoted to my case, and for recently starting a website, too. The truth is, there isn’t just one reason—there are several.
I guess the main reason is that I want to keep my story as fresh as possible in the public’s mind. When I first reached out to a reporter five years ago—a great Las Vegas journalist named George Knapp (who will soon be airing another report about my case; stay tuned)—I did it because I believed that going public with my story would lead to useful clues and tips that could help me break my case wide open.
I truly believed there was someone out there who held the key to my case—someone who knew the answers to the questions I needed answered. The wider net I could cast, the more likely it would be that someone would step forward with the one piece of information that would help me solve my case.
It didn’t quite work that way. George’s report aired, and my story quickly went national, and everyone from ABC to CBS to Anderson Cooper wanted to tell my story. Sure enough, a lot of tips and leads did pour in, and some of them were extremely helpful and very relevant. But I just never got that one magical tip I’d been dreaming of, the one that would solve everything. Maybe I was just being naïve.
Those of you who have already read my book will know that when I finally solved the big mystery of my life—who am I?—another 50-year-old mystery was created. It was like reaching the end of a marathon, and being told another marathon was starting right away. The fact is, I still have two hugely important mysteries I need to solve, and I still believe there is someone out there who has the information I need to solve them.
So when I post notes and items and stories on Facebook, my goal is to keep my story fresh, keep it in the public’s mind, and keep making more and more people aware of it until, hopefully, the one person who knows something will step forward and point me in the right direction and help me solve these mysteries.
But that’s just one reason. Another is that The Foundling, my book about my life and my search has just come out, and of course I want as many people as possible to hear about it and read it. So I have been a little more public about things in recent months than I have in the past. Having a new book means I will get the chance to get back on TV and have another chance to talk about my story and draw more people to my new website, where they can learn more about my case and also send in tips and ideas and suggestions that will help me going forward. It also means I might sell more copies of my book, which, I can’t deny, is something that would be nice.
Another really important reason I am so public about my search is that I have always hoped my story might inspire other people in similar situations—people who are missing something in their lives and need answers they haven't been able to get. I believe my story is universal in a lot of ways, and if my struggles and setbacks and triumphs can inspire others out there to keep pushing to find the truth, then I'll feel like I've accomplished something meaningful.
But there’s a fourth reason why I keep posting on Facebook, and on my new website. It’s a reason I hadn’t thought all that much about until that woman sent me a note and asked me what the goal of my postings was.
I post on Facebook because it makes me feel like there are people out there who care about me and care about my case, and that makes me feel like I’m not all alone in this thing. It makes me feel like other people are out there searching with me, and supporting me, and urging me to keep going. The moral support I get from my Facebook family is important to me, especially after spending so many years not knowing where my real family was.
So that’s it, basically. What I need from all of my great Facebook supporters is just that—their support. Their kind words, their questions, their encouragements, their ideas, their “hello’s” and “good luck’s” and “we’re praying for you.” Their friendship, I guess.
Because it helps me immensely to know that I am not in this alone.
So thank you again for your continued kindness, and have a great day.