An unhealthy fixation with social media can do a number on what kind of sex you’re having and how connected you are to your significant other in bed, according to experts.
1. It can make sex feel dull
If you’re getting a lot of your daily excitement from checking Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Tumblr, then “real-world” activities like sex might start to lose their sheen and feel boring in comparison.
“A ‘virtual’ relationship can be enticing and stimulating. It’s ever-present and you can engage at any time!” says licensed couples therapist Jeanette Raymond, author of Now You Want Me, Now You Don’t!. “That makes your sex life feel more like a duty or routine experience.”
2. It can distract you when you’re between the sheets
If all you can think about when you’re getting it on is what people are posting on your favorite social media accounts, that’s a red flag that it’s distracting you from enjoying or engaging in sex.
“You might be thinking of what your friends on social media are up to, saying about you or even how to tell them about your stuff when you are engaged in sex, making sex an unappetizing experience,” Raymond says.
3. It takes time away from having sex
Social media is time-consuming. Incredibly time-consuming. And if you’re addicted, then an inordinate amount of your day and night will be devoted to it. That means less time for your relationship — and sex.
“When you get more juice from a photo that someone has posted of you or is tagging you in, then you are not going to want to make time for romance and sex,” Raymond says. “It’s like you have to transition back into the real world and ‘miss out’ on other stuff.”
4. It can make you think everyone else is having better sex than you are
People love to sugar-coat pretty much everything on social media and make it seem like their lives are a lot more perfect than they actually are. That includes how they portray their relationships and the sex they’re having. The influence of social media is so powerful that you might actually believe everyone else is in better relationships and having better sex than you and your guy are. But it’s deceptive, and it’s dangerous to buy into all that idealism.
5. Sex becomes just another thing to brag about on social media
If you’re finding you’re having sex just to post about it on social media, that’s a major warning sign. “Sex just becomes a ‘thing’ to do that is then used to either talk about in terms of a trophy, its quality (as if it were an ice cream!) and who is getting what from whom,” says Raymond.
6. It can make you fantasize too much about other people
Social media has turned stalking — whether it’s exes, past crushes or cute guys at work — into a pastime, and a perfectly acceptable one at that. Because of the ease with which you can “follow” people online, spending too much time on your various accounts can make you fantasize about and obsess over guys other than the one you’re actually with, which makes you mentally and emotionally disconnected from him and hurts the one real romantic relationship you have in your life.
7. It can feel like cheating to your partner
If your obsession with social media runs so deep that it’s taking you away mentally and physically from your relationship, your guy might begin suspecting that you’re cheating on him. And in a way, you are.
“Your partner may sense that you are not really ‘there’ during sex and get upset,” explains Raymond. “He or she may think you are cheating — and if thoughts about checking your Twitter, Facebook or Instagram account to see who is tagging you [are pervasive when you’re sleeping together], then it may indeed be a form of cheating.”
So tone down your time spent on social media and use what you have left over on your guy — the living, breathing human being you love and chose to be with. The payoff — in the bedroom and out — will be worth it. Promise.