I *heart-eye emoji* my iPhone as much as the next gal, but I’m certainly not unaware of the negative ways in which they’re affecting both our platonic and romantic relationships (mine included). Here’s how our phones are ruining love:
We’re usually looking at our phones after sex rather than cuddling. Are we so obsessed with our social media standing and/or work e-mail that we can’t even dedicate a few moments after such an intimate activity to our significant other? Making a beeline for your screen makes the sex seem like the “work” and the time spent staring at your phone the “reward.” How about you put the phone down and go for round two instead?
We aren’t interacting with the people in front of us. Right now, we’re more “connected” than ever—connected to the internet, connected to people from all around the world through social media. But how much are we communicating with the people we literally share our lives with? Nobody is saying you can’t (or shouldn’t) be interacting with people on the internet, but just be mindful of the people who are actually in the room with you! A real life conversation every now and then won’t kill you, you know.
Going out for dinner is a whole new experience. We’ve all seen it—those couples that sit right across from each other at restaurants but are too distracted by their Facebook feeds (or whatever the hell they’re looking at) to even acknowledge each other’s existence. This is one of the examples that I’m guilty of to an extent, but definitely not as bad as some of the duos I’ve witnessed lately. Glancing at your stories every once in a while is acceptable, but full-on ignoring your company is so not cool. Whatever it is can wait 30 minutes, I promise.
Smartphones amplify trust issues and jealousy. Jealousy is a staple of basic human emotion, therefore everyone has some level of experience with the green monster. There’s no doubt that smartphones are amplifying all of those pesky trust issues and envious vibes. If you’re already a little bit suspicious of your significant other, there’s a very high chance that their phone vibrating and lighting up every five seconds is only going to cause your anxiety to go through the roof. Whatever you do, DON’T try to jailbreak your way in because then you’ll both have trust issues and you’ll just be right back where you’re started.
We use smartphones as a crutch. Got out of class early and no friends in sight? Check your phone. Feeling awkward in any social setting? Check your phone. Waiting in line? Check your phone. Sometimes I wonder if people are even capable of having real conversations anymore. Re: anxiety as mentioned above. Smartphones are to adults as shiny keys are to babies. Fantastic for distraction but engaging enough to always leave you wanting more.
Dating apps and social media make dating seem obsolete. This one is kind of a double edged sword. Dating sites and social media are absolute gold mines when it comes to getting the low down on that cute dude or chick you’re currently drooling over. Favorite Netflix original, go-to obscure movies, their favorites memes, you got it. However, it strips away the mystery in getting to know someone and all but obliterates the intrigue. Doesn’t anyone want to fall in love the old fashion way anymore?
FOMO = social media bingeing. Facebook is where you go to brag about all of the sweet activities you partake in on the weekends and the bad-ass promotion you just got at work. But, it’s also where everyone else goes to brag too. All of those Pinterest-worthy weddings that your friends have been going to all summer will have you scrolling ’till your fingers are about to fall off, so heed with caution. The saddest part is it isn’t uncommon to look up at the clock after what feels like 5 minutes and realize it’s been an hour. So not good for productivity.
Work follows everywhere we go. Bringing work home with you used to be a bit more difficult than it is now, and that’s why some of us just can’t give it up. Being able to check your work e-mail from your phone is awesome and accessing Google Docs remotely is sweet when the situation arises, but the workaholic in all of us seriously needs to take a chill pill. Or five.
Our social media personas don’t align with our true selves. FOMO not only leaves us feeling down, but it also makes us feel like we have something to prove on social media. We overcompensate for our feelings because we think it’s what people want to see but in doing so we grossly misrepresent ourselves. Not only are we deceiving ourselves, we’re deceiving everyone else with our semi-fabricated statuses. No matter what, I just hope my friends never stop posting pictures of their cute puppies.
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