Missing links from online dating

By Evan Riekhof
On February 10, 2014

With today’s technology such as texting and social media causing less face-to-face interactions, dating can be difficult.

In a time of online dating it can be hard to form lasting relationships because much of the interactions occur in a “virtual world.”

Communication takes place through text messages, email or social media. These types of interactions make getting to know a person on an intimate level difficult because relationships require face-to-face and verbal interactions to develop.

True interpersonal relationships rely on receiving and decoding the verbal and nonverbal messages of another person in order to develop intimacy.

Social media and texting can make it difficult to know who people really are.

This could be scary because it is much easier to lie when hiding behind a computer screen.

An example of this is Manti Te’o, who thought he was in an intimate relationship with a girl, only to find out later that he had been lied to.

Virtual relationships and online dating do not allow people to know each other on a deep level.

Meeting someone for the first time face to face is becoming less common.

With the use of technology people are more likely to meet for the first time in the “virtual world.”

For instance, classmates may meet for the first time in an online classroom.

Friendships can be started in chat rooms, discussion boards or through social media.

Online dating sites make it easy to meet and connect with like individuals online before ever meeting in person.

If the decision is reached that the participants are not compatible, they may choose to never meet.

The lack of face-to-face interactions can make for ambiguous and confusing conversations.
Even talking with friends using Facebook’s chat feature or texting can cause confusion.

It is easy to take a text message out of context when the receiver does not understand the tone in which it was sent.

Even with the use of emoticons, texting can be misinterpreted.

Asking someone out via text does not seem like the best idea because the intent, whether a date or hanging out, may be misunderstood.

To truly form a lasting relationship, dating needs to take place in the real world.

The date should be arranged either face to face or verbally through a phone call. The date should take place at a location agreed by both parties.

Conversations should occur in person, not via FaceTime or Skype.

After the relationship has begun to develop and the couple feels as if they know each other, then an occasional date via Skype or FaceTime may be necessary or appropriate.

It is important to get to know each other in the physical world before engaging with each other in the “virtual world.”


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