There was a day when love notes by post were the only means of communication between a man and a woman. During and before those days, lovers would have to be wait to be called upon in person after a long day in the fields. Maybe it was this lack of communication that kept these couples together and married for forever. Perhaps we can learn a little from our forefathers and mothers. With less opportunity for communication, this may introduce a notion that fewer opportunities allow for fewer mistakes with our mate. Today it is too easy to mess up with thanks to the instant gratification that comes with technology. When we are ticked, we don’t have to wait all day until the farmer comes home to reem him for forgetting our birthday. Is this a good thing, or a bad thing? Before you freak at the notion that I may suggest you turn your cell phone off, relax. Technology is a good thing and does bring the hearts closer together. But when used poorly, it can be a terrible weapon that brings the axe down on a very good thing. Here are some rules to follow so that technology doesn’t become the third wheel in your relationship.
1. Canceling a date via text is poor form in an early relationship. When you are gelled and bonded, exclusive and comfortable, go ahead and cancel by text. Before then however, use texts for their best purpose, flirting. When you need to cancel, take the five minutes to pick up the phone. Your common decency will be remembered. And, if you aren’t worried about the person’s feelings or common decency, then well, there’s a bigger issue here than how you are using technology.
2. Breaking up by text is equally bad form. Actually, upon recalling the infamous Post It Note episode from ‘Sex and the City’, breakup via SMS is probably the only thing worse than a Post It. Take it from Carrie Bradshaw, and dignify the end of a wonderful experience with something that requires more than 140 characters. This rule also applies to Email and IM. Do not use the excuse of a long distance relationship for this one. If you can text, you can push the little green phone button and make a personal call.
3. Don’t break the seal on the L bomb electronically. This means if you have not yet said ‘I love you’ to the one that you do love yet, do not use technology as your first means to break the seal on a big leap of faith. Of course it is easier which is why it is made into a rule. This is a cop-out, and saying it out loud for the first time is the most respect you can give a relationship. He or she deserves to HEAR those words the first time, not see them.
4. Don’t use technology at all if you are attaching expectations to it. In other words, if you need to hear back from him or her, use a phone call. If your happiness depends on their response, you are using technology to validate the relationship. This makes you look needy and desperate and actually makes the other person less inclined to answer. If you are answering or responding to texts, IMs, and emails, it’s different. But if you are emailing just to get a response to overanalyze every word and see how much he likes you then technology is not serving its purpose. Relax, play it out, use your email when you need to.
Technology is a wonderful thing and we are very lucky to have the options that we have available to us today to keep in touch with the ones we love. The key here is that, it is nice to have when we need it, but a little goes a long way. Have I missed any? What are your thoughts?