Are Too Many Selfies Destroying Your Relationships?
We see selfie culture all around us, whether walking down a busy New York street or exploring the Arizona desert. These self-portraits are often captured to show others where and how the photographer spent their time. While the specific effects of selfies on the psyche continue to be debated, what they represent to others about us is more worrisome. People who take excessive selfies spend a lot of time posing, editing, and posting with a smile on their face they may no longer feel after the post. Selfies focus on self-promotion and gaining attention from others on social media: a way to shout, “Look at me and what I am doing!”
However, selfie culture poses downsides to one’s self-esteem and relationship security. This is because the selfie doesn’t stop with your post; you are exposed to others’ selfies, which often cause you to feel smaller in comparison. You also must consider if you’re truly enjoying your time if it’s spent constantly taking photos of yourself and/or your partner. Or do you merely want to project the image of joyfulness when you don’t feel terribly happy?
Relationship experts warn couples of excessive selfies, which tend to announce a fake version of your relationship to your social media platform, distracting and disrupting the growth of true intimacy and security between the couples. I have listed several dangers to your relationship caused by selfie overuse. The first step to breaking the selfie addiction cycle is to talk with your partner about the amount of time and effort you want to invest in selfies and agree to a reduction in exchange for spending more time engaged in the moment with activities that make you feel closer and more connected.
The scream of insecurity. Most selfies that pose danger in a relationship depict only you. Because selfies are usually sent when you’re alone, sending selfies while out on a date makes your partner feel abandoned and alone. Although your ego may get stroked from strangers online complimenting your appearance, the constant search for attention begins wearing down your relationship and unraveling communication.
The search for validation from others. In a healthy relationship, you receive your support from each other as well as close friends, but taking and posting excessive selfies reflects that your need for attention and validation are out of control. You begin feeling less and less confident without the constant support of others, many of whom are strangers. This causes your partner to feel overwhelmed and less trusting that they are the one who is most prioritized in your life.
The surrender of self. When you spend a lot of time taking photos of yourself and editing the right look and words to match, you begin to feel like an imposter in your life. You lose touch with yourself and the satisfaction of being part of a real relationship. Sharing feelings and secrets, laughing over silly life circumstances, and holding space for each other are all components of real love and the messiness of life. Only selfies can appear perfect, and this feeling of momentary perfection causes you to feel more fake every time you snap that self-portrait.
The loss of self-esteem. Self-esteem isn’t derived from the “likes” or compliments received on a selfie. Instead, it is built upon feeling good about yourself and the way you relate to others. The more selfies you take, the more time you commit to them and less to your partner. Soon, the online compliments become a bigger priority to you than how your partner feels about your excessive use of them. This creates a rift between the two of you that cannot be repaired, leaving you with another failed relationship.
The boosted superficiality. When priority is given to a “look” rather than a person’s character, relationships become less meaningful. Losing the importance of relationships and authentic meetups is a tremendous sacrifice, especially when one forfeits something real for something fake.
Selfies can be successfully employed to gain a lucrative chance to connect with people in the media industry when the sharer commits to putting their phone away in the company of their loved ones to share authentic moments together. However, when you begin counting on a selfie to feel validated, seen, and/or important, you cross a boundary shared with unhealthy relationships. Self-absorption is not good for your relationships. Stash your phone away and invest time in others to validate, support, and add meaning to your life.