Is social media straining your relationship?

Experts say Facebook can be breeding ground for jealousy

Published On: Mar 15 2012 04:31:12 PM EDT
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CLEVELAND -

More and more people are using social media to find new love. 

But as helpful as Facebook or Twitter can be in establishing a relationship, experts say social media can also create stressful situations in the dating world.

Dr. Scott Bea is a clinical psychologist at Cleveland Clinic.  He said when social media and social lives start to mix, it can create jealousy.

“Imagine starting a dating relationship, and you find out the guy that you're involved with has 350 female friends," said Bea.  "It creates a whole new kind of stress. You have all of this competition that you might not have known about before, it might not have existed before.”

A recent study found sharing too much information on your profile page is most often cited as the top way social media causes stress in a relationship.   Tagging your “ex” in a photo is runner-up.  Social media users said getting a friend request from a former significant other will also cause trouble in paradise, as will finding revealing information or photos on your partner’s wall.

Bea said 15 or 20 years ago, it was much easier to keep some things from the new person you’re dating.

“We weren’t built to think about the person we’re dating having so many other social contacts and friends that might compete with us. We like that feeling of exclusivity, that we’re the one that matters first and foremost.”

Bea said, in time, he expects people to get a little more used to the role social media plays in modern life, which will hopefully decrease the tension in the dating world.