A new study shows that more of us are texting over seeing people face-to-face. But what are the downsides?
Adults are making fewer phone calls and having fewer face-to-face encounters while texting is on the increase, according to new research.
The report, by Ofcom’s Communications Market, found more than half of adults text at least once a day but only 49 per cent meet people face to face on a regular basis.
Relationship counsellors believe this texting can be detrimental to our relationships because people miss conversational signals.
‘You don’t see what their body language is like, so what they are saying can be misinterpreted. Also when you text you have time to think and edit your words, so it might not be completely honest’ says Christine Northam, from Relate.
Texting instead of seeing people can also lead to feelings of loneliness. This is worsened when when people cancel plans by text.
But it’s not all bad. Christine says: ‘It can be a good way of getting in touch. If somebody is alone and they get a communication from somebody it can reverse their bad feelings.’
When you need to say it in person:
1) When the person you’re texting is in the same house
If you want someone to make you a cup of tea, you really need to ask them nicely – and yes, this does mean face to face.
2) When you’re bitching about someone behind their back
Do this by text and you risk the classic SMS faux pas – sending the text to the person you are being rude about
3) When you’re out with other people
‘Some people text at social events because it’s a powerful way of saying other people want to speak to you. Also it can show that they don’t want to be talking to the people they are with’ Christine says. In other words – it’s either sad or rude.
4) To say I love you
According to a new study called the Psychology of SMS, 54 per cent of women text ‘I love you’ to deepen their relationship with their partner. Really?
5) When you’re breaking up
A text message breakup renders the entire relationship as throwaway as texting itself. Unless you’re 14 – in which case it’s fine…
Are you a text-a-holic? Do you text instead of talking face to face? Let us know in the comments below or tweet us @MarieClaireUK #texting (don’t text!)