“Love in the Age of Social Media”
By: Jessica Ortega
Our digital lives are slowly but surely taking over our physical world. Today, 61% of Americans own smart phones and it is estimated they spend about 11 hours a day on major media sources. With all these online communication tools available, it is no surprise that the usage of these take a toll on our most important relationship: our marital relationship. In times of marital trouble, it is easy to disconnect from your spouse and connect with someone else through social media. The result of an environment where temptation and opportunities for affairs are readily available, can cause a drift in your marriage.
According to The Huffington Post, couples using more than five [social media] channels reported a 14% drop in marital satisfaction. Aside from marital unhappiness, social media usage has been linked to divorce rates, and the devastation of breaking families apart.
How can you tell if social media is negatively impacting your marriage?
- You are spending more time on social media than personal time with your spouse.
- You are convinced online relationships are more enjoyable and fulfilling than your marriage or other activities.
- There are spousal disagreements about the content you are publicly sharing online.
- There is an urge for secrecy about your online relationships.
Of course, we are not advising you to permanently remove yourself from social media, as these are part of our present culture. As 21st century citizens, we are to acquire the skills that arise with the continuous advances in technology; however, when engaging in social media relationships, be cautious, act respectfully and remember that you are representing yourself as well as your family on the World Wide Web.
If you are concerned that you or anyone you care about may be experiencing distance or conflict in their marriage, the licensed professionals at Arista Counseling&Psychotherapy can assist you. Contact our Bergen County, NJ or Manhattan offices of psychologists, psychiatrists, and psychotherapists at (201) 368-3700 or (212) 722-1920 to set up an appointment. Visit http://www.acenterfortherapy.com for more information.