How Social Media Erodes Relationships

how social media erodes relationships

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How social media erodes relationships is sad and dangerous. Most times in many homes, children, teenagers, young adults spend hours on their smartphones.  What do they do? They play games, chat, and make videos of little things.  They only put aside their phones when it’s time to eat. And even then, they eat with one hand and press the phone with the other.  Unfortunately, spending hours communicating with friends and family through a phone screen is not the same as actually meeting the same people face to face. Many times, the result, which is very noticeable, is the loss of proper communication skills. Particularly when you now get the opportunity to face your friends personally one-on-one. 

There are 6 ways social media is eroding interpersonal relationships:

Fails To Connect In Real Terms

how social media erodes relationships

When you send messages to a potential girlfriend, for instance. You often fill your messages with loads of romantic hugs, kisses, and hearts emojis.  She also responds with equal enthusiasm. Then, when you finally meet your girlfriend on a date. What does she do? Don’t be surprised if she spends more time scrolling through her phone than making good talk with you. Why is that? She just doesn’t have the ability to make meaningful one-on-one conversations. And when she finally turns round to give you attention. Guess what? It’s only because her smartphone battery died. 

This is a good example of how social media prevents you from connecting in real terms. Most young people tend to feel more at home with an electronic connection. So, in this case, your girlfriend prefers communicating through a cold phone screen to working on connecting in real-time. Therefore, when the chance came to meet one-on-one, the result was stiffness and awkward conversation.

 Eradicates Real Emotional Intelligence

Another negative side of social media on personal relationships is its lack of emotional intelligence. In other words, you can write convincing messages. But both recipient and sender can’t experience real emotions such as happiness, anger, joy, sadness. This is because social media hides your emotions. And when the layer is peeled off, it may be difficult to handle correctly any emotions displayed during a one-on-one meeting. After all, your electronically generated emotions through emojis are not the same as seeing your emotions for real.

While on the other hand, a benefit of a one-on-one meeting is that you can experience each other’s emotions, and respond appropriately.

Reduces The Act Of Physical Contact

how social media erodes relationships

Physical contact like real hugs, kisses, warm embraces, and other positive physical connections are being reduced. And replaced by virtual hugs and kisses.  For example, some teenagers will throw their friends the most creative virtual signs. However, they become tongue-tied and clumsy with physical affection when they meet their friends. The reality seems to be that being alone with your smartphone gives you this power that enables you to say anything. Do anything. And write anything. But once with your friends, the mask is off and you may feel powerless without your powerful weapon, the smartphone.

Hence the advice for teenagers is not to replace completely physical affection with virtual affection. At least make it a 50-50 policy for starters and improve along the way.

Promotes A Deceiving Distorted Personality

Another way how social media erodes relationships is by promoting a deceiving distorted personality. For instance, you will always post your best photo and video shoots. For women, you show perfect glossy skin, makeup, and eyebrows. Along with a Peruvian wig, fake nails, false eyelashes, artificially enhanced busts, and butts. For men, particularly the younger ones, it’s also about posting your best sexiest, and macho photos. The high feeling for both sexes is the hundreds of likes and love emojis accumulated. Now since you pose the best of yourself on social media or phone, by the time you reveal your true physical self to your date, it can be jolting. Either you or the other takes a retreat.

As such, the advice is to be your true self, well-groomed of course. But kind of “what you see is what you get”. This way there is no deception. Also, there is less stress and anxiety over your physical looks.

Reduces Interpersonal Relationships

By hiding behind a phone screen, you are literarily cutting yourself off good interpersonal relationships. Even in offices, it pays to leave your desk and meet your colleagues for a one-on-one chat. One benefit is that you get to stretch your legs. Another benefit is the good old emotional intelligence you get reading your colleagues’ faces. Either for signs of anger, joy, frustration, stress, anxiety, or satisfaction. This helps strengthen your bond with co-workers.

Triggers Relationship Break Ups

how social media erodes relationships

When couples go on a date and fiddle with their smartphones, rather than getting to know each other, it’s a red flag for that relationship. Or when couples at home go their separate ways to spend time on social media instead of relishing a meaningful bonding time together. This is another red flag. Furthermore, social media is full of explicit photos of men and women, and only someone with a heart of stone can resist the invite.  The point being made is that social media has been responsible for relationship breakups, and will continue to be so. That is unless you put a seal on your social media use. This means selecting what is useful to your happiness and business growth. And blocking the needless damaging distractions to your personal relationships.

Conclusion

The goal of how social media erodes relationships is to highlight the negative consequences of spending 18/7 on social media. Rather than with real flesh and blood people. Agreed social media has changed the course of social relations interfacing globally. But what happened to the good old-fashioned way of having fun? Those pre-social media days when there was more effort to take your dates, friends, families, and spouses on different outdoor activities. Unfortunately, now, many people love their own space and get all the fun they want just flipping through social media. Or playing video games. The negative effect is the erosion of good old personal interrelationships, and possibly the reason for the increase in criminal activities.

https://www.lifehack.org/389150/5-ways-social-media-can-destroy-you

Photo Credit: Creative Commons

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