3 Ways the Internet Can Contaminate Romantic Relationships

The Internet is changing the way we think about relationships, often for the worse.

Source: Adrian Swancar/Unsplash

Technology has brought us closer together in many ways, expanding our understanding of how we can organize our lives and communicate with the people we care about. Dating apps have made it easy to meet new people. Social media helps us stay connected throughout the day.

However, problematic behaviors have also emerged, especially in the context of romantic relationships. Here are three signs that your technology use may be making your romantic relationship worse than better.

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#1. Fabbing

Research explains that neglecting your partner for their smartphone (aka hanging up) can eat away at the foundation of your relationship. a study is published Personality and individual differences He calls the phenomenon of phubbing a “social allergen,” “annoying behavior of others that increases arousal through repetition and attribution about them.”

If this is not addressed, phubbing can lead to bigger problems. Your partner may become hypersensitive or resentful of you checking your phone repeatedly.

It’s a good idea to nip your grimace habit in the bud. Maintaining healthy boundaries with your smartphone, like making it a rule that phones go in the trash after 8 p.m. without touching them, benefits not only your relationship, but your mental and physical health as well.

#2. A ghost

Ghosting is a popular non-confrontational relationship termination technique that involves completely ceasing communication from one member of the relationship. Although it seems convenient, research warns that ghosting can exact a heavy psychological cost on both the ghoster and the haunted.

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According to Katherine Holmes, a psychologist at California Polytechnic State University, being haunted by a special someone can have the following negative consequences for the ghost:

  1. Lack of closure. Instead of accepting being a ghost, the ghost seeks answers as to why the relationship was “destined to fail” as a way to ease their grief. Unfortunately, making false excuses can prolong grief instead of resolving it.
  2. Confusion about responsibility. The abrupt and mysterious ending of a relationship caused by ghosting can lead to confusion about who or what is responsible. Inevitably, the ghost may veer toward self-blame, causing mental exhaustion and lowered self-image.
  3. Avoiding future vulnerabilities. Perhaps the most unfortunate consequence of ghosting is developing an instinct to avoid future relationships altogether. This “self-defense” strategy can prevent the ghost from forming meaningful connections in the future.

#3. Porn Excellence

While the occasional shared porn viewing may be healthy for a couple, excessive indulgence in one or both members of the relationship is a definite red flag. According to A study is published Frontiers in psychologyunrestricted access and unregulated use of pornography can have a corrosive effect on your well-being and your relationships.

According to psychologist Steven Sammuth, our preference for instant gratification can work against us when using porn and can lead to problems like anxiety and depression. Other side effects of excessive porn use include:

  1. A low sense of self-worth.
  2. Objectification of potential partners.
  3. A distorted sense of reality.

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Relationships change with time and technology. It is our job to carefully study such changes to decide which ones we want to accept and which ones we would be better off leaving.

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