How Social Media Can Ruin Real Life Relationships

Is social media ruining your relationships?

A communication expert and author warns the public that social media may have a negative impact on our relationships and thus our online activity should be taken with caveats.

Communication expert-author Leslie Shore claimed that social media platforms change the way people interact with each other. “Social media is a double-edged sword. “Sometimes that’s great, and sometimes it’s not,” she said.

She further said that spending longer time online may limit our experience in dealing with real people and in dealing with them. People, these days, may have a limited skill in ‘reading people’ and thus strong, deep relationships may be hard to find and maintain, or may take more time to flourish.

Millenials’ Use of Social Media

A similar study revealed shocking facts on how millennials manipulate their social media in projecting a desired imaged to the public. One-third of the participants revealed that they exaggerate their stories and relationship statuses on social media. Up to 75% of the ones surveyed agreed that social media may affect their relationships negatively with 68% of using social media to monitor their partner’s activities.

Looking at the ‘perfect’ posts also set unrealistic expectations in a way that self-esteem is affected negatively. Do you find yourself comparing yourself to others who have more ‘perfect’ lives than yours? In a study, 57% of singles are found to have developed a Fear of Missing Out (FOMO) as other users garnered more likes and impressions than others and thus may gain more popularity.

How Social Media Affected Couples 

Meanwhile, it was found out that SNS has affected some couples and how they relate to each other. The need to check the other’s phone messages, texts and activity may happen and may harbour paranoia and mistrust in the relationship. The relationship status on Facebook also matters a lot, and not changing the relationship status may hurt one’s partner with the latter thinking that by not making it public, the other is ashamed of him/her. The other may also think that his/her partner still has hang-ups with an ex.

This may be such a trivial and frivolous topic but in a survey, 45 percent of millennial respondents admitted that SNS affected their relationships very much.

Relationship experts are now warning the public, especially millenials to keep track on their SNS usage and in as much as possible, set boundaries and rules before in using it. Spending quality time with one’s loved ones without social media is also highly advised. One is encouraged to be more aware of the things posted online and how it can impact on others.  Social behaviour online should also be scrutinized reflected on. One may want to ask if such behaviours (e.g. rants, snooping, bashing) are acceptable in an offline context.

Above all, nothing beats actual face-to-face communication. So, the next time you feel under the weather, get out from your room, try shutting down your phone and be active. Go out and talk to your neighbours and family members. You will be surprised how much stories and activities you have missed because you’re spending a lot of time online!

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