Interpersonal Communication

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Have Facebook, Skype and texting increased or decreased the chances for long-distance relationships to be successful?

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There is no question that the contemporary era's multiple means of personal communication, especially social networking sites and Skype, have made long-distance relationships easier than any time before.  The ability to communicate instantaneously via texting, the prevalence of cell phones in most peoples pockets or purses, and, most importantly, the visual connections made via Skype all contribute to the extremely important component of communication within personal relationships.

Whether these means of personal communication are sufficient to increase the probability of a long-distance relationship succeeding, however, is uncertain.  Certainly, in some cases, Facebook, Skype, and all the rest have facilitated the continuation of some relationships, especially when the physical distances involved are not so great as to prohibit regular personal visits.  And, an important fact is always going to be how well established the relationship was at the time of physical separation.  Newly-dating couples would invariably find the physical separation more difficult to overcome than would married or long-established couples.  Even for the latter, however, physical separation exacerbates any other underlying issues that may exist within the relationship, and most marriages involve such issues.

Today's couples involved in long-distance relationships have it better than earlier generations.  Geography, however, didn't entirely disappear with the introduction of social networking, texting, and Skype.  Physical intimacy remains important to most relationships, and no amount of texting or Skype can substitute for that.

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