Has Social Media Ruined Our Ability To Connect?

Has Social Media Ruined Our Ability To Connect?

What is love? Baby, don't hurt me.

The modern dating world is driven by social media and communication primarily exists through the use of technology. When you can easily get a date just by swiping your phone screen or following someone on Instagram it becomes too easy to skip the wooing that used to be so important in dating.

The romance seems to have dissipated into pixelated LED lights and been swept away in the vast abyss that is social media. There is no more courting, no more earning and there seems to be a lack of motivation to impress. We’ve become so used to instant gratification and ease of communication that in our dating world, real love seems to have gone extinct. I just wonder, what happened to it?

When our grandparents were dating, it was customary to court someone you were interested in. Maybe I’m old fashioned or a hopeless romantic, but a certain level of respect in a suitor’s words and actions would go a long way nowadays. I’m not saying we need to revert back to sexist ideals that strictly define the roles of men and women in relationships, not at all. I think one of the most amazing things about the Millennial generation is how open and accepting of all types of relationships we have become.

I do, however, think that if you are pursuing someone, you should recognize that you are trying to earn their attention. You’re trying to convince them to give you their time, something undeniably valuable in this fast, unpredictable life. So, I don’t know where it got lost in translation, but coming at someone with aggressive, overtly sexual comments does absolutely nothing in convincing them to even acknowledge you, nevertheless give you a millisecond of their time.

In the current dating world, there exists a very prevalent “hook-up” culture, which I have no problem with. The problem I have is the objectification that tends to coincidently run rampant throughout these casual encounters. Often, if you’re looking for more of casual, no-strings-attached type of relationship, those that pursue you tend not to have the best manners.

Just because I only want to see you once, does not give you the right to treat me like a toy that you can use, throw away and forget about. That’s just not how you treat another human being in general, nevertheless a human being that freely gave you time, energy and attention.

Honestly, what is the harm in just saying hello to someone?

I have a theory that we’ve lost the ability to have meaningful romantic relationships because we’re losing the ability to connect with each other on a deeper than surface level.

Due to the excessive screen communication and lack of intimacy in the real world, we fail to put into practice the skills required to build an advanced relationship with someone we care about.

In addition, the drive for instant gratification causes us to frequently rush into relationships before getting to know the person and we end up broken-hearted and traumatized. Let that happen a couple times and it’s enough to make you never want to try and get emotionally connected to anyone ever again.

It’s human nature to want to be loved, accepted, valued and when we tire of the flings and start searching for a relationship which can satisfy these needs, it’s like searching for a diamond in the rough. The search seems endless and many give up on the hope of ever finding the mythical beast called love.

I can see how it is easier to throw in the towel, I've done it plenty myself.

I’ve always felt that innate desire to be unconditionally loved, even cherished, by someone and to be able to return such feelings to them. For a long time, I wanted it so badly that I tried to make it happen anywhere I could.

I put my heart into the worst hands and it got broken, nearly beyond repair. At this point, I was ready to give up, accept defeat and the fact that I would need to get comfortable being alone.

I felt I had no love left to give, not romantically at least, but you know how they always say when you stop looking for it, it happens?

I’m clinging to that hope and I still believe in true love. I have a rejuvenated confidence that I will find it one day because as soon as I gave up, someone walked into my life and broke down every wall I had built up. We can’t with absolute certainty predict what life will bring us, but we can control what we hope for and I choose to hope that true love has not gone extinct.

Cover Image Credit: Pixabay

Popular Right Now

There May Be 'Nice Guys' And 'Nice Girls' In 2018, But You Don't Owe Them Anything

While you don’t owe him sex, he also doesn’t owe you a relationship.

Disclaimer: the attitudes represented in this article go off the general research pattern that women tend to approach dating in a more traditional setting, whereas men are more welcoming of casual sex.

While it is entirely acceptable for each gender to approach dating and relationships in either context, the behavior discussed looks at typical patterns in modern, young adult dating culture.

In the current dating world of young adults, there exists a parallel between the "new age" scene of hookup culture and the traditional routes of dating customary to generations before us.

In each generation, however, exists the type of male who utilizes his usual social graces and pleasant or kind demeanor as a social exchange for sex.

In the 21st century, this type of guy has been labeled as "the nice guy," or as I’ll label it for the article, the NiceGuy™. Popular phrases have formed around this term, such as “nice guys finish last,” which means that guys who have this "nice" demeanor can never manage to win over the girls they want.

Before I continue, I’m not referring to guys who are respectful, considerate human beings who approach women as equals.

While the NiceGuy™ tries to come across as genuinely nice, he has an entitlement complex that women see but he doesn’t. Therefore, he becomes frustrated by the lack of social rewards he thinks he deserves.

The narcissistic tendencies of the NiceGuy™ and his lack of insight leads to constant complaining that women don’t recognize his supposedly great qualities, as well as ill-informed attacks toward women for being “superficial” or “callous” — when in reality, they just see the debauchery behind his poorly constructed persona.

There is also a female version of the nice guy as well.

The NiceGirl™ is the woman who thinks that the effort she makes in appearance, communication and time entitles her to a relationship with the guy of her interest. And if he doesn’t give this to her, how dare he be so unappreciative and rude?

In her mind, she thinks, “Can’t you see I’m making all this time for you? Why are you so insensitive to what I want and can provide for you?”

There are also guys that will string a girl along because he likes the attention from her, and if he does, shame on him. If this is the case, it’s justified to be frustrated when he invites in the dating behavior without any intention of maintaining it.

However, if a guy does not reciprocate your effort and actively does not encourage the attention, shame on you. He did not ask for you to invest that much of yourself, and quite frankly, if he doesn’t show any interest or communicate with you, he’s not worthy of your time anyway.

And for the genuinely nice guys who go after the NiceGirl™ types that relish in your attention but then drop you for a NiceGuy™, I’m sincerely sorry. Those girls will figure it out eventually and will stop complaining about their lack of boyfriend once they learn to identify NiceGuy™ types and to appreciate different kinds of guys. Be patient.

Realistically, if no one communicates at the front end to articulate their expectations about dating, the never-ending cycle of selfish or misunderstood behavior from the NiceGuy™ and NiceGirl™ types will continue, creating a positive feedback loop of inconsiderate actions in each sex as they are navigating dating. This process will continue to perpetuate negative stereotypes such as the ones listed above.

That said, it could also potentially leave out the genuinely kind people of the world and will prevent the NiceGuy™ and NiceGirl™ types from learning, identifying and articulating what they want in their relationships.

While this article may seem pessimistic and may attack specific dating behaviors we tend to do on a daily basis, the main point is that we need to learn to communicate and understand someone’s background and intentions before someone gets hurt or gets the wrong message.

For those into casual situations, be frank on the front end. Don’t string people along who care about you, only to drop them when it’s no longer convenient for you. That hurts people.

For those interested in dating, it’s important to show you care, and you should be willing to put in the effort to prove you mean something to them. However, don’t run yourself into the ground if they don’t reciprocate it. You deserve someone who appreciates you for what you do.

And for the rest who might be in either dating or casual situations who don’t know what to do? Be honest! Make sure the way you communicate is respectful, but if you’re just not into him or he’s just not that into you, make sure to find the best way to share your intentions with the most positive impact.

Ultimately, dating sucks.

But it can become so much better if you learn how to communicate appropriately and see people for who they and are what they want. This way, you can learn about your own and others' expectations, how to accommodate them best and how to respect everyone's expectations in a variety of situations.

Cover Image Credit: Pixabay

Related Content

Connect with a generation
of new voices.

We are students, thinkers, influencers, and communities sharing our ideas with the world. Join our platform to create and discover content that actually matters to you.

Learn more Start Creating

5 Great Dates That Fit Your Budget

Cheaper loving

Everyone loves a good date. How can you not? Nothing can ever really compare to spending some quality time with that person you love (hopefully). But when money is tight, it is hard meeting the demands of fancy restaurants, $15 movie tickets and $8 boxes of popcorn. So instead of breaking the bank, try these cheaper dates instead!

1. Drive-ins

Yes! They do still exist, and they are much cheaper than their movie theatre counterpart. Drive-ins are perfect for seeing the latest films for a much cheaper price and a more personal experience. You get to be in the privacy of your own car and bring your own yummy (and cheaper) snacks!

2. Picnics

You may not be one for the outdoors, but even so, you have to picnic with your loved one at least once throughout your relationship. You get to be in nature which can actually be very refreshing and a change of pace from the business of daily life. Also, you can make inexpensive sandwiches and tasty snacks to share, and who doesn’t love that?

3. Exercise Date!

I know, it sounds horrible. Who likes to exercise? Well, working out with your significant other can actually be much more fun than you may perceive. Whether it is at the gym, at home, or on a run, you can motivate each other to be better, work harder, and hopefully get in better shape! When you’re bringing out the best in each other, the relationship can only become stronger, making not only your exercise dates more pleasant but also all other aspects of the relationship.

4. Puppies and Pet Stores

Who doesn’t love puppies? Take a trip to a local pet store or ASPCA with your significant other. Animals can make even the worst of days a little bit better. Take some time to play with the puppies, kitties, and other cute fluffy animals to boost your mood and spend some quality time with the one you love.

5. Dinner Dates (at home)

Going out to dinner is great, but it can get very expensive. By making your own meal at home, you can bond with your significant other as you struggle to cook. You still get to experience great food, but this time in the comfort of your own home. Also, you’ll have leftovers for a while, so even if you do have to spend a little extra, you will save on meals in the coming days.

Dates don’t always have to be elaborate expeditions to the most expensive restaurants or resorts. Looking for other types of ways to spend time with your significant other can be extremely fun and creative. These five options are just some of the numerous ways to really experience quality time with your favorite person.

Cover Image Credit: Photo by Toa Heftiba on Unsplash

Related Content

Facebook Comments