Luckily I heard that the messenger app was a huge battery killer before I ever installed it.
I saw its permission list once, and thought "hahahahahahaha... No way!".
On those occasions I "needed" it, I'd open m.facebook.com in my mobile browser.
Then facebook actively started blocking the android chrome browser from doing messenger things, continually trying to force their messenger app, this made me even more suspicious. After all, I could do messenger things on my desktop browser, why would I need a bloaty app to do the same on mobile?
So I tried a different mobile browser, and guess what, that works fine. Zuck and friends had obviously not put that into the blocked user_agent list.
It's a pity so much of the population have yet to develop the right kind of paranoia regarding apps - they seem great at developing the wrong kind of paranoia with regard to other, completely innocent things!