News / USA

Love in Digital Age Offers Opportunity, Dangers

Digital connections can make - and break - relationships

Social media can make it easier to form romantic connections but there's also a down side.
Social media can make it easier to form romantic connections but there's also a down side.
TEXT SIZE - +
Faiza Elmasry

In today’s fast-paced world there are more ways to communicate than ever - e-mail, text messaging, Facebook, Twitter and other types of social media. Relationship experts say such connections can help fuel passion and have already changed the way people date and fall in love. Yet, technology can cause people to fall out of love, too.

Game changer

Digital connections have changed the dating game. As two young, single women from New York City, that's something Olivia Baniuszewicz  and Debra Goldstein learned firsthand.

"First of all we’re flirting more openly, a lot more often," says Baniuszewicz . "Things like your phone for texting, or even just the Internet on your phone just helping you plan a perfect night out."

"So we decided we needed to figure out the world of texting and we wrote a book about how to navigate through this new love connection," says Goldstein.

'Flirtexting: How to Text Your Way into His Heart' explores how texting has changed the dating scene.
'Flirtexting: How to Text Your Way into His Heart' explores how texting has changed the dating scene.

The two women named their book, "Flirtexting: How to Text Your Way into His Heart." During the course of their research, they interviewed dozens of people to find out what they thought about flirt-texting.

"It’s become like a convenient way for people to connect through busy, fast-paced lives," says Baniuszewicz. "Also, it eliminates the shyness factor. It makes us a lot more open to saying things that we normally wouldn’t in person."

Goldstein agrees. "It’s really cool. If you are in a long distance relationship, for I actually was, it really, really helps to stay connected."

Relationship expert David Coleman, who's known as the Dating Doctor, agrees - to a point.

"Still with things like Skype or I-chat and texting and phones - just all the things that are available - long distance relationships often don’t succeed," he says. "We really miss the other person’s presence. Up to a point, sure, I can see the other person on the screen, they can see me. We can keep a bit of our passion alive, but at some point in time, if we can’t be in each other’s physical presence, the pain of being in a long-distance relationship will finally outweigh the benefits of being in it."

Revolution

Coleman says technology has revolutionized the way people meet and date.

"You can Google someone, you can go on Facebook, you can go on LinkedIn, you can go on Twitter, you can find out so much about these people before you even say ‘Hello,’" he says. "There should never again be a ‘blind date’, unless someone has completely voided their life of any social media."

That’s why, Coleman says, people should be careful about the image they create for themselves online.

"If you go to most of younger women’s websites on Facebook, you will see their profiles, they got some provocative things put up there. So you have to be a bit careful of the pictures that you’re putting up. Never ever give people your land address and things like that, because you just don’t know who is reading that profile."

Coleman notes that even the older generations are dating digitally and finding love on-line.

"Many of them are finding their ex-high school sweethearts on Facebook or someone they used to date years and years and years ago. And those couples are reconnecting and they are marrying. Now conversely, people are finding past love on Facebook and telling their current spouses, ‘I’m so sorry, I thought I’d never find this person again, but Facebook brought us back together. We had something special and we want to try to have it again.’ I have a friend who is a lawyer. He says in most of his divorce cases now, Facebook is being cited as a reason for that divorce."

Word of caution

Lovers, Coleman warns, should also realize that e-mails and text messages can be a double edged sword.

"Let’s say that I say, ‘I don’t think we should be together anymore. I’m breaking up with you,’ and I text that. The person who gets that text message can read that over and over and over again. And the more they read it, the madder they get. That’s what social media has done. And conversely it can be, ‘I love you, I love you, I love you’ and they can go back and read that 50 times, too. So it works both ways."

With that caution in mind, Flirtexting authors Goldstein and Baniuszewicz have come up with some digital love do’s and don’ts.

"If somebody sends you a text message, you don’t have to respond back right away," says Goldstein. "In fact, we interviewed a lot of guys and they say that response time says a lot about the girl. Also abbreviations, our motto is 'if you don’t want a date, abbreviate.' So we say, spell your words out. You have the time to create a message that says exactly what you want to say in that space. And just because it’s accessible it doesn’t mean you need to be doing it 24/7. You do not want to get a marathon texting situation."

Baniuszewicz adds,"Have a healthy balance between everything; texting, Facebook, Twitter. It's a way to enhance a connection throughout the day. You need to use everything in moderation."

And, they add, even though texting is more convenient, writing a love letter, or sending a poem with a card gives a modern relationship a special personal touch that a message on Facebook just can’t match.

You May Like

Wikipedia Proves Useful for Tracking Flu

Technique gave better results than Center for Disease Control (CDC) and Google’s Flu Trends More

Turkish Law Gives Spy Agency Controversial Powers

Parliament approves legislation to bolster powers of intelligence service, which government claims is necessary to modernize and deal with new threats Turkey faces More

Video Face of American Farmer Changing

Average American farmer is now 58 years old, and farmers 65 and older are the fastest growing segment of the population More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Face of American Farmer is Changingi
X
Mike Osborne
April 18, 2014
The average American farmer is now 58 years old, and farmers 65 and older are the fastest growing segment of the population. It’s a troubling trend signaling big changes ahead for American agriculture as aging farmers retire. Reporter Mike Osborne says a new report from the U.S. Census Bureau is suggesting what some of those changes might look like... and why they might not be so troubling.
Video

Video Face of American Farmer is Changing

The average American farmer is now 58 years old, and farmers 65 and older are the fastest growing segment of the population. It’s a troubling trend signaling big changes ahead for American agriculture as aging farmers retire. Reporter Mike Osborne says a new report from the U.S. Census Bureau is suggesting what some of those changes might look like... and why they might not be so troubling.
Video

Video Donetsk Governor: Ukraine Military Assault 'Delicate But Necessary'

Around a dozen state buildings in eastern Ukraine remain in the hands of pro-Russian protesters who are demanding a referendum on self-rule. The governor of the whole Donetsk region is among those forced out by the protesters. He spoke to VOA's Henry Ridgwell from his temporary new office in Donetsk city.
Video

Video Drones May Soon Send Data From High Seas

Drones are usually associated with unmanned flying vehicles, but autonomous watercraft are also becoming useful tools for jobs ranging from scientific exploration to law enforcement to searching for a missing airliner in the Indian Ocean. VOA’s George Putic reports on sea-faring drones.
Video

Video New Earth-Size Planet Found

Not too big, not too small. Not too hot, not too cold. A newly discovered planet looks just right for life as we know it, according to an international group of astronomers. VOA’s Steve Baragona has more.
Video

Video Copts in Diaspora Worry About Future in Egypt

Around 10 percent of Egypt’s population belong to the Coptic faith, making them the largest Christian minority in the Middle East. But they have become targets of violence since the revolution three years ago. With elections scheduled for May and the struggle between the Egyptian military and Islamists continuing, many Copts abroad are deeply worried about the future of their ancient church. VOA religion correspondent Jerome Socolovsky visited a Coptic church outside Washington DC.
Video

Video Critics Say Venezuelan Protests Test Limits of Military's Support

During the two months of deadly anti-government protests that have rocked the oil-rich nation of Venezuela, President Nicolas Maduro has accused the opposition of trying to initiate a coup. Though a small number of military officers have been arrested for allegedly plotting against the government, VOA’s Brian Padden reports the leadership of the armed forces continues to support the president, at least for now.
Video

Video More Millenials Unplug to Embrace Board Games

A big new trend in the U.S. toy industry has more consumers switching off their high-tech gadgets to play with classic toys, like board games. This is especially true among the so-called millenial generation - those born in the 1980's and 90's. Elizabeth Lee has more from an unusual café in Los Angeles, where the new trend is popular and business is booming.
Video

Video Google Buys Drone Company

In its latest purchase of high-tech companies, Google has acquired a manufacturer of solar-powered drones that can stay in the air almost indefinitely, relaying broadband Internet connection to remote areas. It is seen as yet another step in the U.S. based Web giant’s bid to bring Internet to the whole world. VOA’s George Putic reports.
AppleAndroid