Let me preface this by saying I know a lot of you will disagree with me. But please, before you get all critical, hear me out.
Three months ago, I was just another bitter teenager: angry that I was single, and confused about why my relationship status remained predictably boring throughout adolescence. I’d look at couples on Instagram and roll my eyes, thinking to myself, Is it really necessary to publicize your relationship? It seemed like they were taunting me; I couldn’t even bring myself to comment “so cute!” on my friends’ pictures with their boyfriends, because I was — yep, I’ll admit it — jealous.
I thought that when I finally found a boyfriend, my annoyance would fade and I’d start posting with him, too. But to my surprise, when I recently entered my first-ever serious relationship, my outlook stayed the same. I’m still not a fan of seeing boyfriend-girlfriend pics on Instagram or VSCO, and I still roll my eyes whenever I see someone profess their love to their S/O online. Now that I’m in a relationship, I can certainly say that it wasn’t just jealousy I was feeling before — I was rightfully irritated that so many people felt the need to broadcast their relationship status online.
Here is the truth: your relationship should be between you and your partner. Your followers are not part of your narrative, and they should not need to know every little detail of your relationship (unless you’re Tayshia and Zac from The Bachelorette. In that case, please post every detail of your romance!). If you feel the need to share the details of your love life, talk to a trusted friend or family member. But all of your followers do not need to know what your Valentine’s Day plans look like, or that you just celebrated your 3-month anniversary. That’s information you can keep between the two of you without feeling the need to remind everyone else.
It may sound unusual or shocking, but I have never even felt a slight urge to post about my relationship on social media. I find it much more enjoyable to live life in the moment and enjoy my boyfriend’s company, as opposed to thinking about what I’m going to post for our next anniversary or date night. I’ve become a much happier person since two years ago, when I decided to stop posting on my main Instagram for good. There’s something about removing the constant pressure to post that enables you to enjoy life a little bit more. If anything, a relationship should be even more private and less necessary to post than a pic of you at your new vacation spot.
Not only is advertising details about your relationship unnecessary, but it can also be upsetting to those who do not have a partner. Even if it’s not your intention to be boastful, a post about how happy you are together can come off as bragging, and essentially puts salt in the wound of those who are single and searching, or experiencing unrequited love. If you’re celebrating a milestone (like an engagement), that’s a different story, but your relationship does not need to be broadcast on the regular.
Posting on social media is not a love language. It’s not an effective way for you to express your love and appreciation for another person, and it does not equate to telling someone you love them in person. Instead of searching for likes online, search for happiness in real time.