The way that people communicate with each other in relationships has always been a topic of interest to me. While I have spent countless hours talking about relationships with my friends, I know that I am not the only one. Just look at shows like Seinfeld and Sex and the City! Classic examples of the many types of communication mysteries and failures that are possible with budding relationships.
In the past few years, the answering machine has been abandoned for texting, Facebook, email, Twitter, and everything else. The modern dater has to be on top of his or her game to make sure to not to misinterpret what is being said in these mediums, while simultaneously trying not to send any mixed signals on their own accounts. Add this on to the need to be mindful of face-to-face interactions, and you are looking at amount of work comparable to some part-time jobs!
Social Media can make or break a relationship… those photos of your awkward phase a couple years back (and yes, your interest probably has looked), weird “hobbies,” and questionable political views… it’s all coming out sooner or later! While PR and social media people are constantly aware of personal branding, the average person if probably less aware of their online image and the unspoken rules of engagement that are still being developed every day. Social Media is powerful and is completely capable of destroying a promising relationship and refusing to participate can be equally dangerous. Here are some of the top ways Social Media can ruin a relationship:
1. Finding out that your dating interest is definitely/probably already in a relationship. — Frequent posts saying “I LOVE YOUUUU,” from another person might give it away. Watch out for the real “players” who have more than one Facebook account.
2. Not being on the same page in regards to exclusivity. — Too many questionable posts from a “rival” friend might indicate your interest is seeing other people. Approaching this concern is questionable if you don’t want to seem too needy, but passive-aggressively obsessing over it is equally uncool.
3. Mentioning tweets… when you aren’t on Twitter. — It is perfectly acceptable to be curious about what your interest is saying on the internet, how else are you going to find out if they are psycho?? If you are engaging in this kind of “creeping,” however, it’s best to keep it to yourself! Another option is to make a Twitter account and engage in socially acceptable stalking.
4. Purposeful ignoring. — Social Media allows us to track our interactions to the minute. That means if I message “Joe” at 1:30PM and he writes on “Sally’s” wall at 5:46PM without responding to me, questions are going to arise. Especially if a direct inquiry such as “What are you doing tonight” was included. If your dating interest is purposefully ignoring you, 99% of the time, it is on purpose!
5. Too much interaction. — Just as too little interaction indicates a potential problem, so does too much interaction. Be wary of people who are always available to chat and feel the need to post, message, poke, tweet, comment, like, etc. all day long!
6. Posts/Tweets that contain ambiguous song lyrics or quotes. — Sometimes these are purposefully directed towards you and sometimes the person just has that song stuck in their head. Stay on the safe side by not acknowledging it!
7. Updating your relationship status before that topic has come up in an actual conversation. — One of the worst social media relationship crimes a person can commit! Have the conversation in person before you decide to tell the world.