Social media makes getting a date (and breaking up with a partner) as simple as the click of a mouse.

This can have a number of positive and negative side effects.

On the negative side, for those looking for a committed, long-term relationship, social media may be making it easy to meet people.

He hasn’t updated his page since your blow-out fight; does that mean he’s hiding his posts from you?

Why is she untagging herself from all of the pictures of you as a couple?

While exchanging messages and virtual flirtations can be the start of a meaningful relationship, it can’t end there.

Good old-fashioned togetherness, conversation and mutual affection can be supplemented by social media, but not replaced.

And you can do the same, making it difficult to move on from old flames that fizzled. On your first night out your date yells at the waiter and can hardly form a sentence. Your prospective partner may be hiding behind an alternate persona, or you may have created a false image of who you think the person is based on a few comments they made.

Our best allies when looking for a partner – instincts and common sense – can become cloudy behind a computer screen. As a relatively new medium for dating, there is a lot of unchartered territory on social media sites.

An Obstacle to Healthy Intimacy Online dating sites have helped thousands of people find love – as many as 120,000 married couples in just one year, according to a 2008 study.

Much less reported are the number of unhealthy “hook-ups” and mismatched – even dangerous – pairings that occur each year on social media sites.

Even though we’re able to contact a long list of people, social media sites may not be enabling the deep, long-lasting companionship that many hope to find.


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