effects of social media

Social media has changed the landscape of human relationships and friendships. Most people are connected now on social networks, and it has become our lives. While it is nice to reconnect with your old friends and see who’s up to what, social media can become a serious issue when it comes to a relationship with your partner.

Your girlfriend befriended a guy that you don’t know on Facebook. She is chatting with a long-lost love, or maybe she is liking a certain guy’s photos, and you don’t understand why. Or, maybe your wife is sharing too much of your personal life on Facebook. All of that can cause arguments behind closed doors in your relationship. Let’s examine the effects of social media on relationships so you can prevent it from getting in the way between you and your partner.

Setting the boundaries

If you’re dating or in a relationship, you need to set some boundaries about what will be tolerated, and what will not be tolerated. Obviously, if there is respect within your relationship, you won’t like that hot girl’s bikini photo and you won’t comment ‘You look so sexy!’ This is disrespectful to your girlfriend or wife, and she will likely see this idiotic comment, so it’s best to refrain from this kind of flirty behavior. As well, she shouldn’t be liking her new friend’s photos as he is showing off his biceps and abs with his shirt off, and she shouldn’t be liking his photos and commenting constantly, as this will make any guy very suspicious.

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It’s appropriate to chat with your friends. It’s not really appropriate to chat with your previous lover on Facebook while you are in your current relationship. Of course, it depends upon what you agree on as a couple. If it’s an old flame that she dated years ago, and he befriended her, it’s best to let it slide, unless you start noticing some red flags with her behavior. I’ve dealt with this in the past, and I’m still friends with some of my exes on Facebook who have since moved on and married, so for me, it’s not really a big deal that I am still connected with them.

If you have a guy that has suddenly come out of the woodwork, and he is befriending her, and constantly texting her and flirting with her, and she is texting him and flirting back, you will need to ask yourself, “Why am I putting up with this?” A woman who truly loves and adores you will not be out there stabbing you in the back. If you’re in a serious relationship, you will need to discuss ground rules about what’s appropriate and what is inappropriate.

Your right to privacy

Unless you are truly joined at the hip with your partner, there really isn’t any reason whatsoever to have a joint Facebook account. Of course, there can be an exception to this rule — you can do this if you’re really secure within your relationship or marriage. I’ve witnessed the joint Facebook account done successfully. The couple will post their vacation trips together, their arms around each other, they travel together, and they enjoy and thrive in life together. There are couples like this who exist on Facebook, and it seems to work for them.

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If you have a suspicious girlfriend who doesn’t trust you, you obviously do not want to have a joint Facebook account with her, nor do you want to have your ex-girlfriend still connected with you, with who you once had passionate sex. You need to use your own judgment, and you will get the occasional girlfriend who will hack into your Facebook account from your phone, or she will incessantly Facebook-stalk you to dig up dirt on you within your relationship. You should avoid this woman like the plague, because she will only make things worse for you, and she will create issues when there really aren’t any that exist.

I get the lovey-dovey couples who are so proud of their love together, that they have joint bank accounts, Twitter accounts, Facebook accounts, etc. and that is completely fine. I just think that having your own private account is the way to go, within a relationship, or single. It works best, and it also keeps the relationship drama to a minimum.

The red flags

So your wife is constantly ignoring you, and chatting to some other guy on her smartphone? Congratulations, bro! You have a huge red flag and likely not a good sign. Why is she doing this, instead of spending time with you? She should be taking a selfie with you while you’re traveling to that rock concert together on your hot date. Instead of that, she is talking to this guy who you don’t know that she works with, and it seems like they’re getting pretty cozy together.

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You may need to sit down and talk to her. If she’s just texting another guy who is her friend, you need to stop being so over-possessive and jealous of her and let her do so. As long as it’s not going anywhere, and she’s not going somewhere with him, I really don’t see the problem with it. If she’s texting him and meeting up with him behind your back, you have some problems that you will need to deal with, before it inevitably gets worse.

Being flexible

You want to be the cool boyfriend or husband that isn’t overly possessive and jealous of her. Let her hang out with male friends occasionally. Let her have her night out with her girlfriends from work. You are showing her that you trust her and that you respect her by doing this, and not being wimpy and insecure about her.

Every relationship is different and the effects of social media may differ too. You need to find what works best for you both as a couple, and if you’re in a situation when you’re not really getting along very well, don’t put it on full blast on social media with a negative or snide post towards your partner for everyone to notice. It’s best to keep your private life private, and if you want to declare your love on social media, this is fine, as long as it doesn’t make your mutual friends throw up in their mouths.

William is a graphic designer and creative writer. One of his favourite interests is reading books about relationships. He recommends ‘How to Succeed with Women’ and Doc Love’s ‘The System’. He has two adorable children that he enjoys spending time with. William is currently single and is preparing for his next relationship. You can follow him on Twitter.

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