The Guardian published an article a couple of weeks ago about relationships that developed online. The story that stood out most to me is about a paper trail of six months of emails from 1990, when Melanie Gideon and her husband first met.
The emails are sometimes romantic ("I love you as much as I love pad thai") and sometimes not ("I know you talked about needing space"). But the bottom line is, it's all recorded via technology. Technology, the internet and social media have really changed the way we carry out our romances.
The story reminds me of the beginning of my relationship. I was unknowingly stalked, I mean checked out, on Facebook before we even met. We had a mutual friend.
The few weeks following our first meeting was a flurry of flirtatious text messages and hours of agony waiting for a response. I remember jokingly texting something along the lines of, "I'm sick and coughing up a lung so you probably don't want to make out with me." He never responded, prompting me to think that he considers me a gross pile of throaty bile.
But not so. He bought a webcam to chat with me although he claimed it was really to Skype with his sister. We live about 45 minutes apart. He logged back onto MSN messenger (he hadn't used it in years) to chat with me. Three months after we first met, he called me to explicitly ask me to change our status on Facebook to reflect our relationship.
Sure, it's all nice when you're reading that text he sent three years ago about finally giving in and disturbing your studying with a cute message...if you're still together! But what happens if those relationships end?
After the demise of my last relationship, I spent three hours deleting every single photo of us together from Facebook. It was an emotionally grueling and physically tiring three hours.
LinkedIn recently email me to prompt me to add my ex. Yeah, no thanks LinkedIn. I take the same stance as Miranda from Sex and the City when it comes to exes:
"Believe me. I would love to be one of those people who's all, 'We loved, thank you. You enriched my life. Now, go, prosper.' But I'm much more: 'We didn't work out, you need to not exist.' "
So, how has technology affected your relationship?