Love in the time of social media
And it is just as bad when it happens to two people in love; when two intimate souls choose to express their love on social media—for the world to see—rather than show it to each other when no one else is present to “like” or put a virtual “heart” on their actions. These platforms are powerful. They may have allowed us to connect in a few clicks and taps, but they could also be the very thing that separates us. Nicole (not her real name) is online almost 12 hours a day. She constantly posts photos of herself and her boyfriend, and promptly responds to comments of their friends. She communicates with her significant other mostly via chat since they live one 40-minute bus ride from each other, and when they meet, she said they would talk for a while and then drift off browsing on their respective phones. They broke up six months ago.
“I guess we no longer felt that connection we had during the early stage of our relationship. Suddenly we felt more comfortable talking online than we did offline,” she related. Despite the ubiquity of social media, some people think that communication through this platform is “not real” or “not intimate” compared with face-to-face conversation. But relationship coach Krista Haapala in her article on goodmenproject.com posited that social media is not to be blamed for couples’ troubles. She said that, just like physical conversation, social media also offers human-to-human connection.
The sex and relationship expert said that the key is to relate to the actual human behind those profile pictures and online posts. “That can take cognitive and emotional shift to behave in the digital world just as you would if you were in the physical presence of your partner or anyone else.” Meanwhile, “oversharing” on social media is another factor that is said to put a damper on relationships. According to a study, oversharing can often mean that the couple is masking their insecurities by seeking validation from their friends and followers. Website Bright Side revealed that happy couples don’t need to broadcast anything because they don’t have the need to do so.