Selfieless Love

How is constant self-documentation affecting our romantic relationships?

By: Kacy Ewing

Photo Credit: Kacy Ewing

Single millennials have lots of complaints about dating that are specific to our unique time in history. From the frustrations of the non-date date to the struggles of resisting social media stalking potential mates, dating in 2016 is a strange beast. While youthful shallowness in dating is nothing new, I wonder how all of this constant sharing and self-documentation is affecting our ability to love and interact. Since it is easier than ever to have access to other people (via text, snapchat, Facebook, whatever), do we lose our sense of mystery or ability to be thoughtful and careful?

I can’t help but think of my grandparents. When they were young, my grandma went on one date with my grandfather and then he got drafted for the war. She didn’t see him for a year. They wrote letters and sent pictures, dreaming of each other’s faces and wishing they could see each other. Of course the distance made them long for each other, but I wonder, would they have developed such a close bond if she had been snapping him videos of her cat and he had been sending her selfies every day? More connection doesn’t necessarily mean quality connection.

Presently, we have access to more content at the touch of a button than we will be able to consume in a lifetime. We also create more content than any generation before us, in just a spare second we can create a photo or video and share it widely. We also have the ability to maintain a certain amount of anonymity and distance in our connections. As Lara Kahn points out in this blog post, if you break up with someone or hurt someone through a text message you don’t have to see their tears or the sadness you’ve caused.

Will social media degrade our ability to love- actively, thoughtfully, whole-heartedly? Most likely not: love is a basic human tendency & need. Will it make us less satisfied with our loves, our partners, our lives, and less accountable for our actions? I think the answer is—for a while—yes. At some point social media will become so entrenched in our lives one of two things will happen:

A. We’ll learn to understand that social media does not reflect reality & see it more as a form of entertainment, like television, not an actual representation of our friends lives.

Or

B. As self-sharing becomes more and more instantaneous, social media will portray a more realistic version of reality.
 
Either way, we would all do well to love a little more openly, not to hide behind vague text messages or Facebook likes. If you like someone, look at their face and tell them. If you want to get to know someone, be nervous & sweet, ask them to dinner. I’m sure some great things happen without risk, but the best rewards require some daring.

 

Sex Love and Social Media

Sex

Photo Credit: T. Anderson

By: Bernadette Orona

Less people want relationships while more people are looking to hook up. The trend to avoid serious relationships and commitment is increasing and this is largely contributed to the way social media has changed the way individuals interact.

I remember a time before everyone had a cell phone where we would hold long conversations on land lines, and write cute notes back and forth. There was opportunity to breathe while getting to know each other. Today technology has opened the doors to jealousy, commitment issues and the notorious hook up culture.

Social media allows individuals to document every second of their lives and for others to have access to that information too often leading to jealousy. One of 2000 people that commented on this issue said, “I think social media causes more insecurities between couples. For example seeing someone else in a picture with your significant other. Its easy for jealousy to arise.”  It arises questions like who is that, why are they with them, and why are they laughing, when it may actually mean absolutely nothing at all.

These same insecurities are what fuels commitment issues. Every time a relationship is questioned the possibility that the relationship will fail is presented. Therefore to avoid the possibility of failing and heartbreak relationships are avoided all together. Ben Sledge explained it in his blog as, “Even in the case of divorce and dating, we can’t imagine a few messy years of conflict to ultimately come out stronger, so we don’t commit. It’s the preemptive fail before the fail.” No one wants a relationship because they’re avoiding the break up.

No one commits to relationships, which in turn has produced the hook up culture. This has produced popular dating apps such as Tinder and OkCupid, applications created with this hook up culture in mind. Vanity Fair explains, “Dating apps are the free-market economy come to sex. The innovation of Tinder was the swipe—the flick of a finger on a picture, no more elaborate profiles necessary and no more fear of rejection; users only know whether they’ve been approved, never when they’ve been discarded.”

Thus creating a culture where sex is the goal and love is the enemy.

Looking for Love in All the Wrong Places Internet dating vs Traditional Dating

online-dating-accounts

By Jasmine Russell

Sometimes I feel like the process of choosing a protecting partner who is right for my standards are slim to none. I don’t mind sharing with you that I have only been in two relationships in my life.  I met my second friend at work and my first friend while I was attending undergraduate school.  I have never considered online dating before but I am aware that many people who tried dating online and loved it.  After my first friend and I ended our relationship he registered for an online dating site.  He met two women online but, neither worked out.

Currently, I have a friend who is engaged to a man that she met online.  They both agree that they have no “regrets meeting on a dating site for singles who are looking for a partner.” Six months within talking and getting to know each other on the app they were living together.  The difference between the way my friend met her soon to be fiancé and how I met two friends are known as dating traditional and nontraditional.

Many people query if online dating is safe, secure and worth the effort and time to see a significant other to become a part of one’s life and eventually continuing a future with the person they are pursuing online.   There is a possibility that someone can find real love while dating online.  Online dating can enhance one’s self-esteem, wellbeing or socioeconomic standing with someone new who have something in common.   However, there may be many pros and cons about virtual dating.  See below:
PROS

  1. There are over 40 million US single users of online dating sites.
  2. One out of five relationships start online. Whether it’s on Social media, Facebook, Twitter, a mobile app, or traditional online dating site, there are a lot of success stories.
  3. You can meet people outside of your geographic area and social circle with similar interests. You’ll meet more people, so you can learn what you’re truly looking for in a date, mate, or relationship.
  4. Online dating sites are efficient and available 24-hours a day.
  5. Many sites provide matching tools and send emails of suggested matches to make it easier to view potential dates.

CONS

  1. Fake Profiles
  2. It’s a crowded digital marketplace and can be an exhausting experience.
  3. People lie about their age, weight, height, income, and marital status. Singles get frustrated after a few bad dates.
  4. Many singles limit their search criteria to height, zip code, or income and can miss the opportunity to meet a compatible match.
  5. Online dating sites may attract predators who are ruthless and aggressive with evil intent.

The question should be considered before considering to seek online dating partner.  Is online dating versus meeting someone offline best to find the perfect date or someone to spend the rest of your life with? While experts might not agree on this topic, even offline Matchmakers are incorporating online dating and social media into their business models.  The answer is clear. There are no one-size fits all formula. As each person’s relationship goals may differ from their best friends or neighbors. While there may be hook-ups to marriage proposals, there are many web sites and a way for everyone to seek a partner. Most importantly when internet dating vs traditional dating meeting someone online always remember to be safe and let someone know your whereabouts in case of emergencies.

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                                                        Reference

 

Mashable.com (nod). Retrieved from http://mashable.com/2016/03/02/british-dating-etiquette/?utm_cid=mash-com-Tw-main-link#BS86x41.A8qf

 

Rudder Christian, (2015, October 2).  Retrieved from

https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/five-myths-about-online-dating/2015/10/02/a344ba92-5be2-11e5-8e9e-dce8a2a2a679_story.html

 

Spire Julie,(2013, October 3). Online Dating Vs. Offline Dating: Pros and Cons. Retrieved from http://www.huffingtonpost.com/julie-spira/online-dating-vs-offline-_b_4037867.html

 

https://www.google.com/search?espv=2&biw=1366&bih=624&tbm=isch&sa=1&q=online+dating&oq=online+dating&gs_l=img.3..0l10.30822.32444.0.32758.7.7.0.0.0.0.127.790.0j7.7.0….0…1.1.64.img..0.7.788.g11uwc8BWh8#imgrc=M-NvMDHzbhQCNM%3A

How Can Social Media Ruin Relationships?

status-not-diary
Sophie van Bastelaer-HerCampus.com

By: Giovanni Pantoja (@realgiopantoja)

Social media has become another appendage in our modern world. It doesn’t matter where you go you’ll most likely see someone glued to their screen or checking their screen every five seconds.

According Kim Stoltz, in an interview with TIME magazine, said society is drawn to the acceptance through social media because of people’s narcissism. We are constantly looking for approval through the number of likes, followers, and notifications we receive. It’s what is based on what is most important in life and how we value who we are. It creates this mindset that if someone or a particular person doesn’t respond to a post then that person doesn’t value you as much as you thought. When reality it’s could be the complete opposite. Stoltz describes the fight of social media like a big, social competition with everyone we are connected with. It’s about who has the most fun, has their life together, and who’s happier. When in reality you might not even talk to most of the people you’re connected with on social media but it’s become so addictive that we come for more. Stoltz talks about how many people suffer through many highs and low’s solely based on what they believe to be reality through a screen. In the same way someone who’s addicted to social media can hinder their current relationship status.

Sophie van Bastelaer writes a list on her blog, on HerCampus, on how the addictiveness of social media can hurt a relationship. The first thing she talks about is over-sharing. It can become over bearing for the other partner that is the subject on hand. Feeling maybe they’re not doing enough or even feeling like they’re not good enough for that person. Not to mention having friends and family knowing your personal business can make a partner infuriated. This includes subtweeting. A passive aggressive version of a post-it note left by partner who’s unwilling to share their emotions and rather leave “hints” for their partner. Leaving a partner in anger because their significant other can’t be open with them.

Another way to derail a relationship is a helicopter significant other who’s constant monitoring every profile of their significant other. Not being able to trust their partner creates a rift. Bastelaer says that most of the time this happens when a partner has been in a relationship where the person was unfaithful. For example reconnecting with an ex is a sure way to break someone’s heart and lose their trust.

So far it seems that social media can create a sense of being connected but can become addictive. Causing to break someone internally and the people they’re most close with.

The Real Story of Valentine’s Day! By Nathaniel Jackson

 

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Saint Valentine. Photo by: cbn.com

What does Valentine’s day mean to you? Do you share it with your spouse? Maybe you spend time with your family? You might even indulge on a gallon of ice cream and chocolate yourself… Whatever the case may be we all celebrate Valentine’s Day a little differently. But how many of us know the real history of Valentine’s Day?

Valentine’s Day hasn’t always been a day filled with love and romance. In fact, the day stems from Saint Valentine… a Roman Priest who was beheaded by Emperor Claudius in 269 AD. Saint Valentine was killed by the Emperor because he was holding secret ceremonies in the Christian Church for marriage. The Emperor didn’t support marriage of young people because he argued that unmarried soldiers fought better than married soldiers. Apparently, the last words of Saint Valentine were written via letter to Asterius’ daughter signing “from your Valentine”.

Ultimately, Saint Valentine stood up for what he believed in – celebrating love through marriage. Today we share that same belief by celebrating love through the holiday of Valentine’s Day. One way the United States celebrates this love is through the purchase of flowers, candy, etc. The National Retail Federation predicted that we would spend $19 billion + this year on Valentine’s Day. This raises the question on how American’s celebrate love? Through activities that money can’t buy or through materialistic things?

This year I celebrated Valentine’s Day with my girlfriend. She woke up to breakfast in bed, followed by a Sunday walk and her favorite homemade meal. For us it isn’t about how much money we spent on each other. For us it is about being with each other and sharing our heart (love) through the actions we take in our relationship. For us our expression of love isn’t confined to one day, it is expressed and shared every single day. My question to you is this, what does Valentine’s Day mean to you?

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Heart Statue in San Francisco, California. 

Photo by: https://floppyphotos.wordpress.com/2011/06/16/change-of-hearts-in-s-f/

 

References:

Kithcart, D. (n.d.). Saint Valentine, the Real Story. Retrieved February 14, 2016, from http://www1.cbn.com/st-valentine-real-story

Tomkiw, L. (2016, February 14). Who Was Saint Valentine? History, Facts And All You Need To KNow About The Romantic Holiday. Retrieved February 14, 2016, from http://www.ibtimes.com/who-was-saint-valentine-history-facts-all-you-need-know-about-romantic-holiday-2298994