Should your status be complicated?

SUSAN NAVA

Is social media influencing how couples relate today?
More than necessary. For some, the relationship is validated by a public announcement and public displays of affection. I know a few people who have had arguments with their partner over describing themselves as single online or “acting single” online. Although before social media, that was never the benchmark for a love-filled relationship.

Should couples be friends on Facebook?
Yes, if the relationship is not the sole reason for the cyber friendship. If there are mutual friends and interests that one would like to stay updated with, then sure.

What habits do you think induce jealousy for couples on Facebook?
Well, for younger couples or couples in the early stages of a relationship, it is possible to get jealous when one party is communicating with an ex online or commenting on pictures of the opposite sex.
But I also think that it is quite unnecessary for someone to try and control the actions of their partner, online or otherwise.
It is probably best avoided by not cyberstalking the person you are with.
How should couples navigate the end of a relationship on Facebook?
My mother always says, “When you tell your business, you invite commentary — during the good days and the bad.” If you did not announce your relationship online in the first place, no one needs to know when it ends.

What do you think about couples who share Facebook accounts?
(Laughs) People do that? How does that work?

What are some of the things couples should never do on social media?
Those who have children together should never argue publicly (online). Although people will comment, it is nothing but demeaning for everyone involved and the Internet has flawless long term memory.

Should couples ask their partners for permission before posting certain sensitive comments and pictures?
If you have got to ask, it is a sign that you should not be doing it. Every relationship is based on its own rules but personally, I believe each person must govern themselves. If you know your partner, you know what will upset them.

Would you let your significant other see everything in your inbox or Facebook wall?
I am an open book, so I do not think anyone would be surprised by anything in my inbox or Facebook wall.
That said, in many cases, things can be misunderstood when taken out of context. So while I do not mind the person in my life seeing any of it, I would aise him to ask me about any communication between me and any person that he is curious about.

What are some of the major issues that you have observed couples who use Facebook experience?
I have noticed that couples who use Facebook, or other social media platforms to communicate about private matters set themselves up for failure. It is much easier for someone to ruin your relationship when they have unnecessary personal information.

Are you friends with your partner on Facebook?
For the same reasons that I will not announce the relationship here, I would not announce it deliberately or subliminally on Facebook or any other social media platforms.

SHAWN KIMULI

Do you think social media is influencing how couples relate nowadays?
I do not think that social media is a true reflection of life. There is a lot of unrealistic trending things that people put out there. People comment in a way that seeks attention. They want to remain relevant and that is why they even post crazy things. So, going back to the question, I believe social media has a great impact on how people relate, in a way that one can tell people who does not know how to control their reaction on social media. If they are interested in someone, for instance, you will find such people all over the other person’s status either liking their pictures or commenting on their posts. And if someone was in a relationship with that particular person whose photos are being liked and commented on, they can easily tell which people are interested in their partner.

Should couples be friends on Facebook?
Well, it is up to the couple to be friends or not. But I do not think it is such a good idea because it is not quite easy to control the kind of information that is put on Facebook. You never know the kind of stuff your partner may land on. There are more closed and toned down platforms such as WhatsApp and Twitter that couples can use rather than Facebook.

What kind of habits induce jealousy for couples on Facebook?
Liking other people’s photos is the one I can point out. You never know why someone likes the other person’s photo. Your spouse has a very nice picture and boom it is right there. And then you look through the list of people who like it and you go, why do they like it? And if the majority are men, you begin feeling a little bit uncomfortable. The other thing is when your partner decides to post pictures without you in them. You begin to wonder why she is not posting pictures of the two of you together. Also, when your partner decides to post a picture of themselves with someone else and people begin commenting that they make a nice couple. If you are in a relationship with such a person, a million things begin running through your mind. Such are things that can induce jealousy among couples on Facebook.

Is there a way of avoiding all this?
Simple, you either deactivate your account or get out of your partner’s circles by unfriending them.

What do you think about couples who share Facebook accounts?
(Laughs) You mean allowing your partner to access your account? Well, if I was married and my wife walked up to me one day and asked for permission to use my Facebook account, I would ask her what she would like to use it for. If she replied that she wants to check updates, I would first give a caution by telling her that the history of my Facebook account is not the one she would want to deal with. And if she insisted, I would give her a go ahead, but then tell her to disregard posts and messages directed to me. If these later became some sort of issue to her, I would remind her that I warned her to stay away from my account in the first place.

Should couples ask their partners for permission before posting certain sensitive comments and pictures?
Yes, I think they should ask for permission out of respect for their partner. For instance, you may have a picture of your girlfriend wearing a bikini at a beach. Honestly, if you want to upload such a picture on any social media platform, why don’t you first ask her for permission? I mean, you may decide to share and tag people without her knowledge and the comments other people make may turn out to be outrageous.

Can social media on the other hand bring a positive bearing on a couple?
Yes, it can. For instance, couples can receive a lot of support from other people during moments of loss for example, of a child. Someone may not come and see you physically but just their uplifting post and comment can make a difference. Also, you may post a picture of yourself and your spouse and it generates positive comments, which can boost the relationship.

What are some of the issues you have observed couples who use social media experience?
Social media has positioned so many people to give accountability to masses where it is not even necessary. For instance, someone may post a picture of him and his partner and all sorts of good comments may start flowing in and then in between, someone may post “Now you are dating that girl, what happened to the other one?” Then, there are things someone will say about one’s partner that they never knew, people posting hurtful and hateful things on their partner’s wall and also those who create fake accounts with their own hidden intentions.

Are you friends with your partner on Facebook?
We are not friends on Facebook because I had a major Facebook account that was hacked and I tried reporting it but the page was instead closed permanently. However, I have a page which she is already part of. What is important though is that Facebook has never interfered with the way I relate with her.

How should couples navigate the end of a relationship on Facebook?
For starters, I think it is a mistake to throw your love around on Facebook. It is even wrong mentioning names and what you are doing with them. I can imagine someone waking up and posting “I will never forgive you”. Everyone will know who you are talking about and the funny thing is that your partner is also reading it. This is why you eventually find instances of people ending up in the media numerous blogs and gossip pages and they retaliate.
The moment you put your love out there, you are involving everyone in your business. If you are the type of person who was accustomed to posting your affairs on social media and things do not work out eventually, take it to the end by ending things on the same platform. If you do not, it will look shady. People will begin wondering why the two of you have suddenly stopped publicising your relationship.

What are some of the other things couples should resist from doing on social media?
They should not over post pictures of their children or the people they love on social media, especially their immediate families. For instance, if you have a picture of your partner and children, posting one or two is okay. When you over post pictures of your loved ones, you are revealing too much information of how they live on a daily basis, which can turn out to be dangerous. Nude pictures should not also be posted. And then, if you want to earn respect for your relationship or marriage, you should not be posting pictures with other people in compromising situations.

SOURCE: Daily Monitor

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