“SOCIAL MEDIA HAS RUINED MY RELATIONSHIP!”…Yes that’s the cry of many people today! But my retort is this: social media didn’t ruin your relationship he, she, or BOTH of you ruined your relationship.
Okay lets back up and come to an agreement…social media is here and it probably isn’t going anywhere, thus we have to address this issue head on. It is definitely possible for your relationship and (insert social media type here!) to happily co-exist.
Here are 4 Ways to Keep Social Media From Ruining Your Relationship
1) Stop Being Single Online But in a Relationship in Real Life:
Let’s be honest…for many people, social media is another form of online dating. With that being said, people need to know very clearly that you are involved with someone. I get the whole argument of “well people don’t need to be in my business,” well guess what….you made it peoples’ business when you decided to get that account and create a username. \
People might not need to know the ins and outs, but at a minimum they should at LEAST know you are married or in a relationship so that the lines don’t get blurred or any false messages are sent out. I can’t tell you the amount of times where I hear people say “well I didn’t know they were married until it was too late.” (‘Too late’ means feelings have developed). It’s your job, as a mate, to make sure that it is clear to others that you aren’t open to anyone else and that you are spoken for.
Being transparent will hopefully hold people to a higher standard of how they decide to communicate with you. This won’t stop everyone from pursuing you, but you have to care enough about your mate and your relationship to stop certain behavior before it starts. So, all of the people privately messaging you so they can feel out your willingness level to be “more than friends” with them needs to be nipped in the bud by you…And it needs to happen immediately!
2) Don’t Believe Your Own Hype
You know sometimes social media is a platform for people to subliminally tell you everything you want to hear. Between “likes” and “winks” and “poke” and private messages, people will woo you all day and you will begin to like it. Suddenly, you find yourself flattered because your Facebook “friends” may be showing you the attention that your partner hasn’t been showing you. It’s at this point that you must CHECK yourself!
This means it’s time to start communicating your needs to your partner instead of falling into the Facebook trap of that ex from back in the day or that person you always had a crush on in college. You can’t hold your real life relationship to the same standard of an Internet relationship that you have begun to glorify in your mind. I see it all the time where the “harmless flirting” online turns into lunch in person and then into an affair that leads to a divorce. The person online has probably pulled the same trick with their other 100 friends or followers…so get over yourself and get back into communicating with your mate.
3) Stop With the Sneaky Stuff
I’m not saying that your mate needs to know all of your passwords to everything, but I am saying that it will look very suspicious and make them very uncomfortable if you are very uncomfortable with them seeing your pages or interactions. If you are uneasy every time they come around or if you close out of your pages when your mate enters the room or takes a look over your shoulder, then something isn’t right. If you are sweating bullets because you left your page up and your spouse is the next person on the computer, then you will look GUILTY!
When you are able to be completely open, your mate will feel more comfortable about you and your relationship with social media. This is not to say they don’t trust you, but it is to say that everyone has some level of curiosity and hiding things only make for unnecessary tension and concern. Not to mention, when you are open you think twice about the things, whether innocent or not, that could be misinterpreted or seen as disrespectful. It makes you more cognizant and also you gain a level of peace in your relationship.
4) You Must Have Some Limitations
I admit …I’ve been guilty at times of being so engulfed in social media for my business that I forget that my wife, at home, needs the same kind of attention. Social media is so accessible that we don’t realize the amount of time we spend on it. And furthermore, we don’t see how much it bothers our mates to have to compete with it. Place some limitations on yourself, like after a certain time… you are done. No electronics during dinner or during dates. Whatever you have to do…DO IT so that your mate knows that he or she is most important to you and not the online friends that we spend so much time keeping up with. It may take some self-reflection and some strategic planning (especially if you use it for business), but it will be worth it for you and your relationship.
Remember that your mate wants nothing more than to be able to trust you 100%, even behind the screens of social media and the Internet. Remember that when those cyber friends are gone, your mate is the one who is actually going to be there in person, where it matters most. Don’t allow social media to ruin your relationship.
Xklusive Thoughts Fam – what do you think are some suggestions to manage your social media activity within your relationship?
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