Dating and hooking up these days are very different from the way they used to be. We're always glued to our devices.
We use our phones as a crutch for dating and hooking up. We use bars and nightclubs to drink ourselves into having the courage to hook up with whoever we can. Sex has become a casual thing for many.
The problem is, no matter how casual we want things to be, there will always be instances that will cause us to go against this way of thinking. We are attracted to certain people, and we can grow feelings without even realizing it.
You don't have to be in a relationship with the person for this to happen. You don't even have to have sex with the person for this to happen. We are communicating with each other constantly, which sequentially leads to miscommunication.
The digital age of technology has handicapped Millennials. We rely heavily on smartphone technology solely for communication. We check our phones for the sake of checking our phones.
If we're bored, we might text someone because of ease and accessibility. We break up with people over text message because its easier than having to face that person. Texting is always easier than fronting the reality of the situation.
We send photos without actually saying anything. We don't even have to think, actually: You can just snap a selfie and send it in the hope of getting some sort of response.
We don't even necessarily need to use words to express what we want. The more we rely on technology to do the communicating for us, the more we cripple ourselves. We fail to communicate organically and naturally.
We can hide behind any persona we choose to create on social media. We can control the perception people have of us.
Here are three instances that can affect Millennials the most when it comes to their severe attachment to their smartphones:
1. Online Dating
Sure, the concept of online dating is pretty cool. It might even work for some people. Here's the problem, though: Your first encounter is not a real interaction. It's forced.
For whatever reason, you wanted to find someone. So, you did. I found online dating creepily strange.
It can totally be a temporary ego boost when guys reach out and give you some attention. But know that it's artificial. It's based on a carefully-picked photo that you decided should represent you.
The whole process is completely orchestrated by you. Nothing is left to fate. Perhaps I'm a hopeless romantic, but I've chosen to believe people are still able to make connections the old-fashioned way: through genuine and unplanned interactions.
2. Cyber Stalking
Social media has allowed us to feel like we know a person better than we actually do. We're able to stalk the person however far back we choose. We attach ourselves to a person's posts.
We see this person constantly through our phone or computer. So, we feel like we're constantly with him or her. It's weird.
Thanks to current technological advances, we actually begin to feel close to the other person. We do this with famous people all the time.
However, it doesn't mean you know the person. You're taking nothing more than a visual peek into someone's life.
3. Phones At Dinner
This happens way too often. You go out to a restaurant and see a bunch of people sitting on their phones, even though they're all at the same table. I forcefully grab my friends' phones whenever we go out to dinner and secure them out of reach.
Sure, they want to kill me at first. But I believe talking is important: actually talking.
I love social media, and I love the way it allows me to stay in touch with people who live far away. But it doesn't mean we should forget that real conversations come first.