Wednesday, October 27, 2010

The Perils of Electronic Communication

Last night's chat was based on this outtake from our new DVD series titled "Christian Dating Redefined." In this bonus section of the DVD, Dr. Stephen W. Simpson warns us to be very careful when it comes to emailing, texting, and social networking. We decided to chat about it. Here are some highlights from the chat:

Linda: So here we go. What do y'all think of electronic communicating in dating?

Chatter: Has both pros & cons, but overall, not so bad. It certainly opens up more options for meeting people.

Chatter: I think the old fashioned stuff still works best.

Linda: When is it a bad idea to send an email or text vs. phone call or in person?

Chatter: not right away. and not when driving.

Chatter: When asking for a date, particularly early, I think you should never email or text if you're over 16.

Linda: good answer. any others?

Chatter: Really depends on what information needs to be communicated, as well as how long the relationship.

Linda: good point. ever spent time trying to interpret an email or text?

Chatter: that's just it. Email and text are impersonal, you can't tell voice inflections or subtle body language, which opens them up to misinterpretation more.

Chatter: We lose a lot in the transfer of info without body language and voice intonation, not to mention facial expressions!

Linda: all good input. so no breaking up, no starting up, no hot topics!

Chatter: Generally, Fb/social networking is different in that you are "talking" to many versus an individual or someone of special interest.

Linda: yeah we really need to be careful in posts that are meant to be personal. Sooooo tacky to address tender topics to the world!

Chatter: Agreed!!

Chatter: Facebook *can* be an effective way to meet people, but at some point, you have to get out of the virtual and into the real world, and talk to a real person.

Chatter: Nothing beats a face-to-face encounter!

Chatter: oh yes, definitely! I have some friends that need to read that!

Linda: after all, if you are going to get married, it will most likely be face to face :)

Linda: do you think some folks hide behind the computer too long? or forever (that's as far as they go?)

Chatter: Yes I think that has become a real problem.

Chatter: Yes, there is a lot of "keyboard courage" happening now, which is not good at all.

Chatter: Electronic communications can be great way to begin, but sooner (rather than) or later a personal meeting is necessary if you really think there may be potential for a relationship.

Chatter: you can hide what you are really feeling when talking to someone since there is no tone in the words typed and they cannot see your expressions.

Chatter: Even if finding a friend is all you are interested in, hiding behind a keyboard isn't the best... you are cheating yourself of True friendship. It really amounts to being "pen pals".

Linda: So back to texting while dating.

Chatter: It's an awesome tool for connection across time zones!

Linda: when is a good time to text or email?

Chatter: i think that all depends on schedules and distance.

Chatter: Email anytime.... (exceptions noted earlier).

Chatter: Really depends on what information needs to be communicated, as well as how long the relationship.

Linda: is it always ok to send a note of encouragement, or a sweet nothing?

All: agree.

Linda: Ok. And quick notes, updates, "on my way" type notes - ok?

All: agree.

Linda: how about this one: "I don't think your mother likes me." Text or text me not?

All: no.

Chatter: when is the best time to transition from emails and texts to face to face?

Linda: depends ... but for sure after 2 to 4 weeks.

Join Founder/Linda in The Meeting Room at Cache' Connections on Tuesdays at 8:00 pm CST to chat about dating issues. (Password: cachecommunity) Next week: If/when is it appropriate for the first kiss?

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