Except when my boyfriend and I are in each other’s company, we communicate exclusively through text message and Facebook chats. Over the past six months that we’ve been dating, I can literally count on one hand the number of times we’ve talked on the phone. Actually, I just need two fingers.
Does the fact that we don’t talk voice-to-voice every day mean there is something lacking in our communication? Or have we defined a modern relationship that’s an extension of the technology of our times? The way couples interact has changed, relationships have entered the modern age of couples communicating.
According to a study from 2010, 1 in 10 couples only talk by phone via text or through email. Even in their home lives together, I personally know some couples who text each other rather than walk from one room to the next. So it looks like we aren’t the only ones who’ve at least somewhat given over to the modern age.
Yet, is it really so different from the relationships of my past? My first serious relationship began my senior year in high school with a guy who lived 20 minutes away. Introduced by a mutual friend, we exchanged letters before we got up the nerve to go on a double date. It was rather awkward, but bravely we continued exchanging letters, which grew longer and increasingly personal. Then the phone calls began, and we would literally talk the night away.
Our relationship lasted for three years, including a period where I was 3000 miles away. We survived through phone calls, daily letters and eventually emails. Without the constant communication, I know we wouldn’t have lasted as long as we did through all the trying experiences we had.
There are some guys I’ve dated with whom I never really had to use other modes of communication, save brief phone calls. Whether we went to college together or lived together, we saw each other every day. Without the constant presence and low amount of effort required to stay connected, I wonder too if those relationships would have lasted as long as they did.