Text messaging can be a great communication tool when it is used effectively. Most people have busy and active lifestyles so finding time to talk in person or on the phone can be difficult. Yet there are times when texting should not be the preferred communication method as it could actually have a negative impact on your relationships as follows:
- You could misinterpret a message and take it the “wrong” way.
When you cannot see the other person, you have no idea how they intended their message. We lack the ability to detect things like the inflection used when speaking and facial and hand gestures. When you read the message, you have to try to attempt to decipher what the sender actually meant.
- Texting does not allow you to tell when someone is being sarcastic or genuine.
Sarcasm is one of those communications where you need to hear the other person’s voice or actually see their face or hand gestures. Sending or receiving a sarcastic message could result in a huge disagreement or argument that was never intended.
- Texting creates an emotional disconnect.
It is hard to interpret the emotions behind text messages. What you meant and how the other person inferred it can be entirely different.
- Texting can make it easier to ignore problems and not address them.
If your loved one is complaining because you forgot to do the dishes or take the trash out, you can set the phone down and ignore their messages. It is easy to make excuses later to why you failed to respond, like saying you were “very busy” at work or were unable to access the phone.
The sender of the message can actually become further upset because they are being ignored. This can lead to small problems quickly growing into major blowups and disagreements.
- Texting can build a barrier between you and your loved one.
Texting to communicate with your loved one all of the time with very little verbal interactions can make your loved one feel like you are building a barrier. They may also feel like you no longer love them or have grown bored with your relationship.
- Arguing via text messaging never solves problems.
Using text messaging to ague is not productive. You and the other person may not fully resolve the issue. Not to mention it can become a “free-for-all” where one or both people start bringing up every little issue or problem they have.
As you can see, the overuse of texting can lead to communication issues and problems. Texting can be a great way to stay in contact but should never fully take the place of actual face-to-face and telephone conversations.
If you or your loved one are having communication issues because you overly rely upon texting, it is highly recommended to get help from experienced couple and relationship counsellor, Ellen Starr. Call my office at 416-488-3102 to schedule an appointment today!