From picking the perfect emojis to save next to your partner's name in your phone contacts to knowing the right time to first Insta a couple's pic, there are many factors of dating in the digital age that previous generations never had to worry about. While you can always do what feels right for you, it's totally common to stress about the unwritten rules of new relationships and social media, like knowing if you can post for someone you're seeing's birthday or if you should change your profile picture to a snap of you and your boo.
Social media can be a sort of welcome party for you and your partner to show the world that you're together. If you're ready for all the important people in your lives to know about your relationship — changing your profile picture to a couple's pic on social media can be a great way to solidify you connection. "In my 'Your Happiness Hypothesis' study, millennial couples reported that posting a couple photo as a profile pic actually legitimizes the relationship and makes it 'official,'" Clarissa Silva, behavioral scientist, relationship coach, and creator of Your Happiness Hypothesis Method, tells Elite Daily. "Couples that use their photos as a profile picture are confident in their relationship before publicly posting and want to share their joy with their friends, fans and followers."
Of course, a public announcement may also mean that some decidedly unimportant people may be all up in your business as well. If your ex still follows you or you have a big extended family that stays connected on the web, it may be important to factor in your comfort with exposing your new relationship to all of your internet friends and followers before hitting send.
"It really depends on your shared comfort level with it," Shula Melamed, MA, MPH, and well-being coach tells Elite Daily. "Don't do it because you feel like you have to — do it because it feels natural and right." If your boo is pressuring you to make your relationship public, or if you're feeling some profile FOMO because all your friends have cute pro pics with their boos, taking a second to understand why you want to change your profile picture can be more helpful than trying to find an exact timeline. If you and your partner celebrated an anniversary and took a really sweet picture at dinner or if you have a totally cute snap from a hike you took last weekend — sharing a photo you both feel good about can come at any time.
Although you and your partner may be totally on the same page, according to Melamed, it's important to get their consent before changing your profile picture to a picture of you both. While they may be totally into you and excited to share your love with the world, they may be more comfortable keeping things offline, or they may have some of their own family or friend stuff going on that makes them a more private person. "Making sure you’re on the same page before changing your profile photo from solo to couple is vital," Silva says. Rather than an exact timeline or length of dating, knowing your boo's comfort with your relationship on the web can tell you when it's OK to change your pro pic to a couples picture. "It is important to have a sense of how comfortable your partner is with sharing your moments together online," Melamed says.
You want to ensure your boo's comfortability with being on your profile before hitting "save" on a picture with them in it. Relationships take compromise and meeting each other's needs. If a public post makes your boo uncomfortable, there's no reason to get upset about it. Your partner's discomfort with having their picture on your social media profile in no way means that they don't totally care about you, or that they won't one day change their mind. Their reluctance to be in your pro pic could be less about you and more about external factors, like their overbearing mother or strict work environment. If your partner isn't comfortable with being in your profile picture, that is perfectly OK — maybe make a cute scrapbook or find an amazing vintage frame to put a physical picture in! There are plenty of fun, more private ways to celebrate your love that keep everyone feeling supported.
Finding the right time to make your pro pic a snap of you and your boo may come down to some IRL conversations. Social media can be a sweet way to share your happiness with the world, but checking in with your partner's comfort level is a must before posting. Making sure you and your partner are on the same page is the best way to keep everything smooth on your social media pages.