Washington: According to a new study, if you include your significant other in your social media posts, the act increases the feelings of intimacy and satisfaction. It also helps to counter the negative effects on your romantic relationship.
That is the takeaway from a series of five studies conducted by researchers at Carnegie Mellon University and the University of Kansas. The results of the study were published in the journal ‘PLOS ONE’.
The researchers found that sharing information online can do more harm to romantic relationships than good. They did, however, find a way to counteract its negative effects. If you often post about your life, include your better half in the post.
The research is the first of its kind to systematically examine how different circumstances can affect whether a partner perceives their loved one's online disclosure to be positive or negative.
"Prior research has shown that self-disclosure positively affects offline relationships," said study author Dr Juwon Lee. "We wanted to explore whether that would remain the case in an online context, where users can share detailed information with large audiences - a phenomenon that typically wouldn't be possible in person,” Lee added.
Their paper's five studies built on each other to attempt to resolve inconsistencies in the literature on online disclosure and relationships. In doing so, the researchers found underlying conditions driving the negative effects of online disclosure.
They compared how posting personal information online affected intimacy and satisfaction in online and offline contexts, romantic relationships and friendships, and when the partner posted about themselves versus the relationship as a whole.
They found when one person frequently shares personal information with large groups on social media; it negatively impacts their partner's satisfaction and feelings of intimacy in the relationship. The research suggested that a romantic partner could feel left out or see themselves as less special.