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How To Deal With Your Love Life And Social Media

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Once upon a time dating and relationships had time tested do ands don’t but as technology and social media has grown we now have a whole new set of issues to navigate. While it’s easier to find a date with online dating and apps, there’s also the issue of moving through the early stages of dating to the relationship phase on the various social media platforms out there.

So to take some of the confusion out of it, I’ve put together a few guidelines for you based on questions I get regular on a basis:

When Should You Friend Request Someone On Facebook?

When you’ve decided that you’re exclusive and only dating each other, becoming Facebook friends before this point can become a source of strain and anxiety. Once connected you can scroll through their life without really knowing the “who’s and what’s” and start making up all kinds of stories.

Things like, what the other person is up to, the photos they’re liking, who else their friend requesting / dating, thinking I texted them an hour ago and they haven’t messaged me back but I see that they just liked this person’s picture.

It will drive you crazy and lead you down a very unhealthy and obsessive path, when the truth is that it’s all speculation and you really don’t know.

How Long Should You Be Dating Before You Change Your Relationship Status?

This answer is similar to above with one significant difference – When you are in a committed relationship AND introducing each other as boyfriend / girlfriend in real life to friends and family.

It’s important to keep in mind that that everyone you know will see your status change and feel free to chime in and comment on it. Especially family members, so be prepared to have a conversation once its changed.

Is It Okay To Have An Ex On Facebook?

Every relationship is different, this is actually a great opportunity to make a social media plan and have real grownup conversation around how you each feel about everything from Ex’s on Facebook,Instagram, Twitter, to who you follow, who you friend, private messaging, etc. all the way to those random numbers you’re keeping in your phone.

This can be uncomfortable to talk about, you might feel like its not romantic but it’s important to have these conversations because couples often get into conflict when we assume that our partner views things and has the same expectations and boundaries as we do.

As for Ex’s it depends on the nature of the relationship you now have with them and if there may be any lingering feelings or need of closure…generally most people are ok with an Ex from High School, 10 or 20 years ago. The person you used to have friends with benefits with or that you only had a few dates with, no.

It’s also okay to say no Ex’s at all and that doesn’t mean you’re insecure or jealous it just means that this is how you’d prefer to set up your boundaries.

Is It Okay To Like A Photo Of A Person Of The Opposite Sex?

This comes down to having a social media plan in place that works for the couple and is respectful to the relationship so that whenever you like a photo it feels comfortable for the other person. But that said, use your own judgment and keep your partner in mind before you like and comment on pictures that are overly sexy or inappropriate.

Shout-outs To Your Partner, Birthdays, Man Crush Monday etc. How Much?

There have been studies that found that the little shout outs and status updates that show positive interactions and commitment to their partner score higher in being happy with their relationship.  So it’s a good thing to do in moderation especially if your relationship and the sentiment are authentic and genuine.

While positive shout outs are good in moderation airing your dirty laundry or fights with your partner is not. What you say and post in the heat of the moment can haunt you forever and these days nothing you post is ever really deleted. You never know who’s taken a screen shot and sharing it, think before you hit that post button.

Should I Be Concerned If My Partner Doesn’t Show Affection On Social Media?

If they used to do it and now they’ve stopped and it bothers you, it could be a symptom of something going on between you in real life but it could also be nothing, so just ask.

If you have a relationship with strong communication in real life and that’s normal for them, there‘s no reason to be concerned about it. There are many people that prefer to keep their social media presence a little less personal and that’s ok.

Should We Share Passwords?

Social media can be a source of assumptions leading to jealousy and anxiety so many couples have an open password policy not meant as an all access pass but more to help foster and build trust.

If you find yourself feeling anxious and doing things like breaking into their account or stalking them online these are red flags. At this point you should to take a closer look at your relationship, why you’re feeling the way you are and have a conversation with your partner.

What Happens If We Breakup?

Delete your Ex’s pictures, posts mentioning them and messages if there are any and of course The Ex. When I work with clients we do a complete social media purge so they’re completely free and ready to move on and open up to a new relationship.

Is Flirting Online Harmless?

Online flirtations are a slippery slope, if you’re in a conversation with someone on social media that you wouldn’t have with your partner there listening to in real life, then you shouldn’t be having it.

Final Thoughts

Social media is such a part of our everyday lives right now, that it has to be part of the conversation as our relationships grow. Using it as a tool online with the little shout outs and pictures as well as ultimately as a source of encouraging deeper conversation and growing together in real life which is actually the point of being in a relationship in the first place.

How do you use Social Media your relationships? Leave me a comment below.

XO,

Deanna

**THE NEXT STEP**

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