Can lovers really break up in the digital age?

Can lovers really break up in the digital age?



Nowadays, couples are often connected in many social situations. For this reason, separation can bring new issues to the agenda. Even though some couples break up, they can’t stay without following each other on social media. When it comes to following social media accounts, the first thing that comes to mind is Facebook. Facebook, which has an important place in the joint sharing of relations, did not remain indifferent to the issue of separation, which is a natural result in relationships, and announced a new feature.

With this newly announced feature, couples can choose “separate” status for their ex-boyfriend. In this way, people have the opportunity to limit what the ex-partner can see about them. This feature also provides the opportunity to keep old common photographs without deleting them completely, and to remove them from the archive in case of coming together again one day. Thus, the option to “stay friends” is offered without deleting ex-partners.

In the digital age, it’s not just Facebook employees who are sensitive to relationships and people who are heartbroken due to separation. The subject has started to be included in the studies of scientists. Many researchers find that social media and messaging apps have a negative impact on people trying to overcome the effects of separation.

Studying the impact of the digital age on relationships, communication professor StephanieTong examined couples who recently separated and still remain friends on Facebook. According to Tong’s research results, constantly checking her Facebook account makes it difficult to handle the breakup. Checking out your ex’s social media account makes the abandoned party feel like they’re still in a relationship and see them close to their ex. This creates an effect that increases negative emotions and reduces self-esteem over time. Continuing to browse status updates that showcase developments in the ex-partner’s life makes the breakup difficult to handle. It is also one of the consequences that this pursuit triggers competitive feelings about who came before overcoming the breakup and nurtures negative feelings.

The negative impact of the messaging service Whatsapp on the emotions of couples who are breaking up appears to be less than social media apps. However, the fact that Whatsapp provides real-time information about whether messages are read and whether people are online can cause separate problems. Situations such as your ex online; It is almost a known fact that it increases the feelings of insecurity, anger, uncertainty and jealousy in the person.

Lisa Mai from the University of Mannheim studied the effects of Whatsapp. According to her study, status information such as “Online” and “Last Seen” can make it difficult to distance ex-partners and lovers. Those who have the opportunity to constantly check their status notifications may think that they can gain control over their ex. This kind of information creates a feeling of intimacy, and it becomes a new situation and phase that separated couples have to deal with. While the difficulty of feeling emotional distance and distance with the ex-girlfriend increases, these applications used on smart phones also remind the role of smartphones. Social media and messaging applications, which are always in use thanks to smart phones, also make it possible to remember ex-lovers wherever they go. The general recommendation from scientists like Lisa Mai is to notice whether following her ex’s status statement has become obsessive. The first thing to do is to delete the ex from the contact list. At this point, the following question comes to mind; How many of your separated lovers are ready for this?

Source: Research Gate. Breaking up in a digital age. Retrieved from: https://www.researchgate.net/blog/post/breaking-up-in-a-digital-age


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