Is True Love Merely a Tweet Away?

The Editor: Ashlyn Richardson

In the coming age of technology, it is easy to assume that relationships are no longer the wining and dining they used to be. Rather than connecting with individuals on a personal level by getting to know all the answers to the security questions websites ask you in case you forget your password, we’re taught that love is merely a few favorites, a few likes, and a poorly executed “slide into the DMs” away.

The worlds of Internet and love have collided with the formation of chatrooms and dating apps like Tinder, Zoosk, and even the type specific sites such as JDate and Christian Mingle, but the most clandestine force driving the suffocation of actual connection are the social media applications that don’t seem to be so dangerous. Instagram, Twitter, and Snapchat have allowed young adults to connect with those in their community they never would have known unless social media branded them as important. Men and women sit behind their phone screens strategically double tapping pictures, liking tweets, and posting selfies to get the attention of the person they are interested in, or in Internet lingo, “thirsting after.” The process of falling in love with someone has been simplified to this social media game that is so common among teens and young adults that finding a partner outside the realm of it seems merely incomprehensible.

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Teens in Social Media, Courtesy of Creative Commons

 

Fortunately for those who are social media obsessed, the instant gratification doesn’t stop when the relationship miraculously comes together, because now the love and appreciation given to a significant other can be shown to the entire world! Now instead of writing love letters, one can just post a sappy caption on an Instagram photo and have the whole world swooning. Or if your significant other goes out the way to do something kind for you, you can upload four pictures of it at a time to show everyone how awesome your relationship is! And yes, I am gagging just thinking about it.  But sadly, some people out there actually appreciate the prolific display of social media PDA coining things with #relationshipgoals and creating entire accounts to catalog said “goals.” As senior Matt Mattson says, “Social media is just another way to show off the person you love. Sure it’s strange to say outl oud, but it’s true. When I want the world to know I’m with someone, social media is my go-to.”  While I may be a cynic who refuses to accept that social media love is the type of romance that could inspire tales like “The Notebook” and Cinderella, it apparently is working for this generation despite the glaring flaws of the effort behind the process. Other agree with this alternative perspective on social media’s romantic novelty, including senior Maddy Dorn who says, “Social media ruined all my past relationships so my current boyfriend and I keep everything private. We’re never going to be Kim and Kanye, so why let the world know all our business?”

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Kim Kardashian and Kanye West, Courtesy of Kim Kardashian’s Instagram

 

Truthfully, the search for love on the internet seems to be one that is favored by many despite the fact that it is so different than the love the generations before us knew. While it is becoming easier and easier to fish for your soulmate in the pond of tweets and photos, one must remember that the process of finding true love must not be simplified by diving into someone’s DMs during cuffing season. Additionally, as a generation, it is important that we must go beyond simple affection that we can snap a picture of and summarize in 140 characters because while it may satisfy some in the short-run, forty years down the road, a heartfelt #WomanCrushWednesday post may not be enough to keep your spouse satisfied.

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