By · @sydneytherapist  ·  · 13 Shares

With over 1.71 billion monthly active users on Facebook, it’s no surprise that people are turning to Facebook to find new partners.

Facebook Dating and Social Media Influence in Finding the Right PartnerNot a week goes by in my therapy office without clients talking about Facebook relationships and all the complications that go with this ubiquitous social media platform.

Jealousy, stalking, shaming, trolling, hurt feelings, obsessions, and rejection are some of the problems that arise when dating on Facebook.

So I’ve compiled a list of my top 5 “don’ts” when it comes to Facebook dating – and the “dos’ to fix these problems.

1. Don’t Chat Endlessly

Does this scenario sound familiar?

You made a new friend on Facebook and started chatting. You realize you have a lot in common and there’s a mutual interest in each other. It seems like this is a promising match, and you’re excited about the potential.

You start to look forward to chatting every day, but as time goes on, you start to realize this is a virtual connection that doesn’t seem to be going anywhere.

And the problem with chatting endlessly without meeting is you start to create a fantasy about this person.

DO: Try to meet in real life as soon as you can after your initial contact so you can get a full sense of the person and if there’s mutual interest. If your new friend only wants to chat without meeting, cut the cord and focus on someone who does want to meet with you.

2. Don’t Friend a Date Too Soon

When do you become friends with your date?

There’s no one right answer for this question, but I have seen lots of people who become friends with a date too soon which then becomes problematic.

Are you sure you want your new date to see those drunken photos from that party a few years ago?

You may not want your date to know all the history your Facebook profile reveals about you, without first knowing your date better.

DO: Take your time to get to know your date before you become friends. If your relationship starts to develop and becomes more serious, then you can consider becoming Facebook friends.

3. Don’t Allow Facebook Jealousy to Get You Down

There’s a good chance Facebook is linked to jealousy in relationships.

In one study, nearly 8 in 10 participants reported their partners had added exes as “friends” on Facebook.

Another study found that on days when they felt more jealousy, participants spent more time monitoring their partner’s Facebook page.

Facebook jealousy is real and spending too much time on Facebook checking out what your date (or your exes) are up to, can cause you to feel jealous.

DO: Cut down your time following the lives of your exes or current dates on Facebook. Focus on your wants, needs, and aspirations, so your life is more important than the lives of others.

4. Don’t Display Your Relationship Status Too Soon

The problem with changing your relationship status too soon is if the relationship doesn’t work out, it can be embarrassing to announce to all your friends you’re single again.

In one study, 1 in 5 participants reported disagreements with their partner over their posted relationship status on Facebook.

If you go and update your relationship status without talking to your dating partner, this can cause conflict.

DO: Make sure you want to take things further with your date and talk to him or her about how you want to define your relationship before you update your Facebook status.

5. Don’t Stalk Your Date

We’ve all been there.

You’re interested in somebody, so you start looking at their Facebook profile, digging into their photos and checking out who their friends are.

However, there’s a difference between just checking out someone’s profile and stalking.

Facebook stalking happens when you’re following their every move, update, or interaction on Facebook. You become obsessed with who they’re with, what they’re doing, and what they are saying.

The bottom line is this is an unhealthy behavior, and you need to stop.

DO: It’s okay to do your due diligence and lightly check on the background of your date but don’t be a private investigator because it will only cause you misery in the long run.

There’s no doubt that Facebook is an incredible tool for connecting with new people and staying in touch with old friends.

Facebook does have its downsides, but when you use this social media platform wisely, it can help you with finding new friends, dates, and enhance your satisfaction of life.

References: http://www.scienceofrelationships.com/home/2013/7/23/infographic-facebook-and-relationships.html

Clinton Power

Clinton Power is a relationship counselor, singles coach and the owner of Clinton Power + Associates, a private practice dedicated to helping singles and couples move out of relationship pain.

Clinton’s book 31 Days to Build a Better Relationship is available for Kindle on Amazon. Follow Clinton on Twitter or Facebook.

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