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Is Technology a Crutch When it Comes to Dating and Relationships?

If only pleasing a woman were so easy...

I love technology every bit as much as you, you see, but I still have more love for technology. This statement is cold hard fact. As true as north as I can get; I love me the t3ch! The tools we use to make our lives easier have changed us drastically and in so many ways. As a business owner it’s allowed me to communicate with clients, face to face, 2000 miles away. That’s almost as impressive as the Sequoia I carry around in my pants that I call a penis! However, technology and dating is where I’m taking this little conversation today.

My girlfriend and I were talking about this topic the other day. What if people put their Androids, iPhones and Black Berrys away? Have we hindered ourselves in ways that we didn't foresee?

How has technology changed how we present ourselves? How has it changed how we interact with one another? This is a topic that I’ll be diving more in depth with contributions from other movers and shakers in the industry. For now, though, let me kick my mojo into low-gear.

I’ve noticed that technology has made uncomfortable situations a snap! For instance, breaking up with people is a breeze! I can tell you that I’ve broken up with three different women, at the same time, with a mass text. Even our own TaylorCast broke up with dudes via text; some of these dudes not just once, but twice! When we use technology to avoid confrontation, we are taking out a very human element to interpersonal communication and we’re being pretty damn disrespectful to the person on the receiving end of this text/email based send-off. You see, we miss an opportunity to grow; we don’t have to deal with emotional tumult, we don’t have to feel uncomfortable, we don’t have to deal with it at all. I think that disconnect from human nature hinders us in our future dealings with people on a deep personal level in some way.

The ability to share and consume information from anywhere at any time has also had a profound effect on dating. I’ve been on dates where I picked a bogus venue. Luckily my phone, with Yelp, guided my date and I to a great time at nearby venues. However, whatever happened to adventure, hmm? Sure, there are certain parts of any town or city that aren’t, er, wise to explore, if we learned nothing about Boyle Heights, in ‘Training Day.’

Even in our dating profiles we can share as much or as little as possible and people make judgments on us without even engaging us. What happened to discovery and being surprised? Heck, I might be just about the worst speller on the face of the planet, but you wouldn’t know it because of spell check! Which, by the way, what is up with those people that don’t bother with it when trying to sell themselves online or anywhere, for that matter?

Technology does a lot of great things, but I think it has also turned us away from having deeper connections with people that we meet online in some ways.

I’m not anti-tech. Hell, I found my girlfriend on Plenty of Fish, of all places. It’s just an interesting topic to think about. What if we blacked out the more common tools of dating today? I wonder. Maybe that would be a good practice for those of us who lean on tech a little too much; get out there and meet people organically, just by getting out there and striking up a conversation. Who knows what could happen. It’s just a thought from a tool of a blogger.

What do you guys think? Do you rely too much on tech to handle your dating life? How has technology made your personal life better or worse? Let us know in the comments below!

Author profile

Alex is the founder and managing editor at the Urban Dater. Alex also runs: DigiSavvy, for which he is the co-founder and Principal. Alex has a lot on his mind. Will he ever get it right? If he does, he'll be sure to write.

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11 Comments

    1. How do we know what the right mix is? We don't. That's why I think, on occasion, we need to "check-out" on our tech and get to business like people used to do before all this fancy tech came along. I'm glad I grew up in a world where these toys didn't exist, personally.

  1. I have been talking about this for months. Technology in my opinion is hurting us in the dating world. It is making it easy to find more people and to casually brush people off. It is hard to connect. When you send someone an email you often forget that the person reading it will have an emotional response. As you said if you keep doing this you don't grow and the other person doesn't grow. There are things each person gets from a break up. It is hard to get closure when you get an email and realize that you will never get to see that guy again. It is confusing chances are the party getting that note has no idea what happened. If you feel you need to tell them it is over there is something there that needs to be closed and you owe it to yourself and the other person to explain yourself. Is it hard seeing you let someone down yes, but in the long run it is worth it.

    1. Hey Megs,
      We grow the most from those moments when we're at our most vulnerable and also outside of our comfort zone. I truly believe this to be correct! Dealing with face to face, or even phone conversations are stressful because you're in the spotlight, forced to think and feel on the spot. That just doesn't happen with a text or an email. Does it?

      1. I was watching Criminal Minds the other day and they used this quote “The Internet is the first thing that humanity has built that humanity doesn't understand, the largest experiment in anarchy that we have ever had.”
        Eric Schmidt quotes

        I thought it was a good quote about the internet and technology in generally. We don't understand how to use it and still be the same people we are. Is it making our lives better? That is a simple question that is so hard to answer. It makes our lives easier no question, but better?

  2. To be completely honest, I have no idea how I would find a date without the internet. It would be nice to meet a guy organically, as you say, but apparently I don't go to establishments that single men frequent.

    Regardless, reading an online profile will never be a substitute for interaction in real life. Often I've met a "great on paper" guy only to find out that the chemistry just isn't there.

    With regard to the text break ups, that's better than nothing at all to which I have been subjected. The mass text and if you have been going out with someone for a while, well then that's a cop out. I bet there were people back in the day who sent quick notes via street urchins as means of ending relationships when a face to face meeting was more appropriate.

    1. Haha! Street Urchins, eh? Probably! You make a great point, though. Because of technology and tools and dating coaches and the like we don't necessarily have to be our best. Other people and technology can do these things for us and help us be better than we actually are. So there's a lot of room to mislead someone. Ya dig?

  3. Personally, I hate online dating and have never tried it. I'm totally anti-tech, at least for now. It just seems so desperate and completely unromantic to meet someone online!

  4. (500) days of boy: how can you hate something if you've never tried it? I also think it's a shame that people still think it's 'desperate'. Five years ago, maybe but online dating has come so far that it's anything but desperate these days.
    Alex, I also have the feeling of the double edge sword. On one hand, I've met amazing men online and had long lasting relationships with people I probably would have never met. On the other hand, I've also had men be too distracted by how many women they can meet online that they find it hard to focus on just one girl. No matter how awesome she may be.
    As for our dependency on it….I must admit that I am a little overly attached to my Blackberry. I'm sometimes unable to totally focus on something because I'm constantly busy checking emails and texts. The first step is admitting you have a problem……

    1. Nicole, I think, for me, the biggest thing that I notice is that it's so hard for us to peel ourselves away from our phone tech on dates. We keep looking at it for updates and all that crap. Apparently, it's hard just to shut the damn things off while out on a date, which is something I do when I'm out with my girlfriend… Unless I'm on call at work. =)

  5. I prefer to meet girls in a bar, because the first impression can say many things about that girl, that you can not find out over the phone or the Internet.

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