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How Technology Has

Changed Relationships

By: Bryn Wall

I’ve been in a relationship for a little over four years. I started dating my boyfriend at the end of high school and we’ve dated all throughout college. I’ve said this over and over to my friends, and as ridiculous as it may sound, being in a relationship in college is the hardest thing I’ve ever done. With all the stresses college puts on individuals, technology has only added more pressure onto my relationship.

For starters, millennials constantly have some form of technology in our hands and are focused in on the digital world. We, as a generation, are so obsessed with what’s going on online that we don’t care to look up and engage with one another face-to-face. Both my boyfriend and I are guilty of this (me more so than him, but I would never admit that to him – LOL) and it has definitely caused conflict between us on multiple occasions. For example, we’ll go out to dinner together and I’ll just be casually scrolling through my social media feeds out of habit. He’ll get upset with me because he wants us to have a meal and enjoy our time together without my face being locked on my cell phone’s screen. I can honestly say, after making that mistake a handful of times, I’ve realized how valuable it is to just put my phone down and simply live in the moment.

Another huge issue technology has created within relationships is the two – widely different, yet both problematic – perspectives of what a relationship looks like for people our age. One viewpoint displays what a ‘perfect’ relationship is. This essentially makes women (and men) think their significant other has to do certain things, say certain things and act a certain way in order to be a good partner. Of course every individual wants and deserves to be treated well by their boyfriend or girlfriends, but the things we see online has convinced our generation that a healthy, happy relationship has to look a specific way. The other viewpoint displays an ongoing trend of not being committed, loyal, respectful, etc. of their partner. I don’t know how or when this became popular, but it’s ruining the idea of love for millennials. Since when did ‘talking’ or Instagram compliments become an ideal image of what love is? Our generation thinks it’s ‘cool’ to not commit to just one person. We think it’s ‘cool’ to disrespect the ones we care about. So, when someone says we’re attractive on social media or gives us some form of a relationship, we become gratified by it. This hasn’t directly effected me and my boyfriend’s relationship; however, we have felt the pressure of others disrespecting our relationship by attempting to create disloyalty. This is a mixed result of the ‘no commitment, no loyalty’ trend we see on social media, as well as using social media as a relationship-building tool.

Technology as a whole has created pressure for millennials that no other generation has experienced before. There is a new level of temptation and expectation that has caused the idea of a relationship to evolve in a not-so-great manner. The good news is we can change this! So, the next time you’re spending time with your special someone, put the phone (or whatever technology you constantly use) down and just hang out with one another.

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