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Modern romance (Am I wrong?)


Aziz Ansari, an american comedian, wrote a book with NYU sociologist Eric Klinenberg, called “Modern Romance”. It was a great read, and I share their view about investing in the people you meet, and not just hoping for a better person to come. It’s true that today, in our modern society, we’ve never had more options when it comes to find love. But as a result, we’re flooded with choices, and as Columbia professor Sheena Iyengar said in her book “the art of choosing”, the more choices we have, the more chances we can end up making no decision at all.

In the book “Modern Romance”, the two authors remind us that a few decades ago, people would find a decent person in their neighborhood. It was the rule back then, now it’s an exception. Among my friends, some of them have found their soulmate thanks to dating sites. Some have found their soulmate through friends of friends. Some have found their soulmate at the office. This is the case for the thirty-something around me. But when I asks older people about how they met their significant other, most of them told me they married someone from their neighborhood.

Today, we search for our soul mate. People marry later. And divorce easily. Around me, most people have divorced or end a long term relationship at least once. It seems we have it so wrong.

Is it because of this economy, where young people struggle to find a decent job? I don’t think it’s the only explanation. After all, there are many temptations nowadays. As Aziz Ansi and Eric Klinenberg wrote, there’s always the hope of finding a better person when you’re on a dating site, where many people are registered. It’s even worse with app like Tinder, where you swipe to the right or the left the picture you have in front of you.

In the book, the two authors also underline another problem with social media. On Facebook, ex’s spy on each other, and never turn the page. People don’t have the courage to unfriend their ex’s, even if it’s the wise thing to do.  But as the authors note, even if you’re not friends anymore, you can still get a peek of your ex’s new life through common friends.

And even with your significant other, you can be trapped with social media. If you like a photo of a man/woman on Facebook, especially if he/she on the beach with little clothes on, your significant other can get jealous. I have noticed not so long ago one of my friends on Facebook got into some trouble because of that. His woman suddenly subscribed on Facebook, asked him to indicate they were on a relationship on FB, and started to like every of his posts to show she was there. Before she got on FB, he used to like many photos of women, including mine. I’ve noticed he has kept it low key since then, and started to comment on journalists/politicians/TV personality/ economists… pages instead. But he’s always on FB.

As the authors of the book Modern Romance conclude, it’s important to invest in your relationship. That means avoiding internet, Facebook , Instagram, Twitter,… to spend time, quality time, with the person you love. Or spend time discovering the person you just met.

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