How Does Social Media Affect Relationships?

Social media has played a very important part in ensuring that we stay connected with our near and dear ones. There are various social media websites out there and all of them compete to provide the best possible features to the users. These social media sites have allowed people to make new friends, and have fostered many relationships. Today, you get instant updates from friends whether they are out on a skiing trip or attending a concert. These features have made social media sites extremely popular among people, especially the youth, who are hooked on to these sites all day. However researchers are asking whether these social media sites are substituting face-to-face interaction. Has technology made people to rely too much on virtual communication? Well, if researchers are to be believed, social media has led to a change in the way people communicate with each other.

Social Media and Relationships

Social media has both positive and negative effects on a relationship. On one hand, it can make one stay connected with his friends all the time, on the other hand, it can cause people to have lesser face-to-face conversation. Also, it has been seen that relationships that develop when two people actually meet each other last longer than those which develop over the internet. In the absence of social networking etiquette, the interactions that you have can be repulsive. However, every coin has two sides, and social media is no exception to that, so it is important to understand the benefits and the repercussions of social media on relationships.

Positive Effects

Social media allows individuals to make new friends, discover new interests, and connect to a large group of people who share similar interests as theirs. People who are not very comfortable with personal interaction, or who suffer from social anxiety often fail to make good friends. Social media can provide them with a real opportunity to shed their inhibitions and be friendly with people. Social media has also made it possible for people from different countries to develop effective relationships. You can interact with people from different countries and know more about them and their culture. Social media has made it possible for a person to share instant updates with each other. Long-distance relationships were earlier characterized by the absence of communication, however it is now possible to constantly stay in touch with each other. Social media websites allow an individual to create a profile which has all the information about the person’s likes and dislikes. This is extremely beneficial in knowing whether you would be compatible with that person or not. Social media also helps you to network in an effective way from the confines of your home.

Negative Effects

One thing most couples complain about these days is that instead of spending quality time with each other, the partners are constantly hooked on to the social media to know what is going on in the lives of others. This can cause a dent in the relationship, as communication is very important to sustain a relationship. It is important therefore, that you spend considerable time with your close ones and limit the time you spend on the internet. The biggest threat social media poses to a relationship is that credibility of a person cannot be gauged on a social media site. This can make people create fake profiles, post incorrect information about themselves, manipulate facts and exaggerate the truth. Developing relationship with such individuals has its own risks as these people can take undue advantage of others. Relationships developed on social media tend to be casual and this can lead to emotional turmoil and heartburn in case you trust someone blindly. It has also been observed it is easier for individuals to indulge in confrontation on social media as compared to face-to-face confrontation.

These were some of the ways in which social media can affect a relationship. Technology is here to stay and one cannot blame it for our lack of understanding. As someone has rightly said that we need to fall in place with technology rather than it falling in place with us. It is important that we put technology to good use as it can really enhance the quality of our lives.

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