Hump Day Crush: Ponderings on Status

On a semi-regular basis, I toss around the idea of really dating again.

After all, it’s been more than a decade now and sometimes I think I should just go for something different just for the heck of it.

I know that if I were to suddenly start “playing the field”, most people I know would be alternately surprised, confused and, mostly, happy for me. Some would see it as “better” than what I’ve been doing for the past decade, even though I’ve been quite happy myself.

The point is, those closest to me (and some who aren’t all that close) would be actively paying attention to what was going on in my romantic life. Not because I write and talk about it regularly, but because something had changed in it.

Movement catches our eyes, changes in status grabs the attention of our minds. Changes in relationship status not only get the mind going, but pull in hearts, too.

Nowhere is this more obvious than on the social networking sites.

I know that over on Facebook, one of the main profile info lines is about relationship status. Are you single? Married? Taken? Involved in something “complicated”? Or do you hide that status from prying eyes?

Some of the longest comment streams I’ve seen have been generated by changes in relationship status. The comments usually run the gamut from “Yay!” to near dissertations on why the change is a good/bad thing. For changes from single to something else, there’s often as many requests for more information as there are bits of congratulations.  For changes from involved statuses to single (or  hidden), commiseration is the norm with considerably fewer pokes for the more lurid details.

When it comes to the romantic relationships–or the lack thereof–of those around us, we are all voyeurs. Regardless if the reason is selfish (to measure our own relationship success against theirs or maybe we’re waiting for our own chance to ask them out) or altruistic (because we do so want our friends to be happy), it’s something we keep an eye on. It’s something we like to talk about.

Except, maybe, when it’s our own status changes that catch the attention of others.

Sometimes, talking about it, good or bad, isn’t something we want to do. It takes time to settle into a new relationship or to let an old one pass. Some poeple (like me) have no problem talking about it as the process progresses. Others don’t want to mess things up or rub salt into their own wounds. We all work through things differently.

Once upon a time, it was easier to keep things to yourself.

Now, in this day and age of Facebook, once you’ve put your status out there, you can’t help but draw some attention when you change it.

Even if you do so only to get a different set of ads running on your sidebar.

How often do you talk about relationship stuff with your friends, online and off? Are you more likely to toss off a quick comment on a status change or send a private message?

  • fiferjanis

    Hmm… interesting point. I dare say a good 75% of the stuff I talk to friends about is in regards to my relationship status and/or feelings on the subject. Possibly because it’s something that everyone can talk about, understand, have an opinion about, etc. Not everyone I talk to, however, could understand or appreciate the art of breaking down “Path Traversal” by its theoretical components, wants to talk about my dog, finds rocks as fascinating as I do, etc. Relationships are one of the things everyone has an opinion about and wants to learn more about (either for their own learning or just out of the need for gossip).

  • fiferjanis

    Hmm… interesting point. I dare say a good 75% of the stuff I talk to friends about is in regards to my relationship status and/or feelings on the subject. Possibly because it’s something that everyone can talk about, understand, have an opinion about, etc. Not everyone I talk to, however, could understand or appreciate the art of breaking down “Path Traversal” by its theoretical components, wants to talk about my dog, finds rocks as fascinating as I do, etc. Relationships are one of the things everyone has an opinion about and wants to learn more about (either for their own learning or just out of the need for gossip).

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