Featured Stories

Other Pamplin Media Group sites

Is this the real thing?


Technology makes it hard to tell if love is real

Jayne RuppertI was at the grocery store last night and as I was waiting in the checkout line I couldn’t help but overhear the conversation going on between the two women in front of me. One was gabbing to her friend about how a guy asked her to be his girlfriend via chat room. I assumed she would be horrified by this and follow with how she dumped him immediately. However, I apparently am not up to date on Dating 101 for 2013. This girl was absolutely enthralled that this chat room dude had taken the enduring, anxiety-filled seconds to type out his offer, followed by three hearts, might I add.

Recently, I’ve discovered that you don’t actually ever have to meet a person to date him or her. You don’t even have to have an actual face-to-face conversation with the person. Why go through the self-conscious eye contact and awkward pauses when it’s so much simpler to type out your words of undying love to a computer screen?

If you do decide to take the “old-fashioned” route, proceed with caution. When asked to go grab lunch and/or dinner by whom you consider to be “just a friend,” always check twice for any masqueraded assumptions. You could be on a date with this person and not have the slightest clue until it’s too late. Sadly, I did not come upon this information in time; I was naive enough to think little of a friendly dinner invitation. This led to a very awkward encounter with the boy’s mother, a four-page letter (front and back) detailing his plethora of feelings and ended with his determination to avoid me at all costs.

Sometimes, however, the pursuit does not end there. It may require two or three or eight times telling the pursuant that you have no interest in dating him or her for the message to finally click. Of course, the blame can’t be placed entirely on that person’s refusal to accept reality. The person could’ve been led astray by a misinterpretation of one too many smiley faces sent in a text message.

Use smileys sparingly in all forms of nonverbal communication. Misuse could lead to a long road of heartache and pain.

I also never cease to be amazed by the means people take to attract a significant other. Facebook seems to be a very popular method. One status read, “If I was your boyfriend, I’d never let you go. I could be your Buzz Lightyear fly across the globe” quoted from Justin Bieber’s song “Boyfriend.” If that doesn’t cause the girls to flock, I don’t know what will.

Posting pictures of your every move while wearing a dress that was made for an 8-year-old is another home run. Who cares if it’s 30 degrees out? Love is pain. As soon as one of these sure-fire methods work, immediately update your choice of social network (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, etc.). If you’re hesitant to post your relationship for your followers to see (Who wants to go through the embarrassment of changing their “in a relationship” or “in a domesticate partnership” status to “single”?), have no fear. I have heard numerous stories of people who started going out with someone before first period, dated for three hours, broke up during lunch, cried about how they thought he or she was “the one” and fell head over heels in love with someone else by the end of the day. After hearing comforting success stories such as these, be assured that if it hasn’t already, love will come for you. Just make sure to check your technology form of choice regularly for any possibilities.

Jayne Ruppert is a senior at Westside Christian High School and writes a monthly column for The Review. To contact her, email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..