Studies has shown that individuals regularly and commonly communicate inauthentic and insincere loving messages to their partners. There are different motives for this act of deception which includes emotion management, conflict avoidance and a need to save one’s face.
It is important to note that a crucial part in maintaining deep relationship, is in effective communication of love and affection. Affectionate communication is considered to be an adaptive behavior which leads to long term endurance of a relationship. Affection is a basic interactive resource, and research shows that individuals identify affection as a very important feature in their mates.
Deception is regarded as a message which consciously transmitted by the sender to intentionally initiate a false belief of affection in the minds of the receiver. Having known that honesty is a desired characteristic in mates, hence, one may have the opinion that deception rarely occurs in romantic relationships. According to research, one in three interactions with a non-married romantic partner is contained a considerable element of deception.
It is no news that most romances in film and other media outlets have at least some elements of delusion. Although, fantasy is not a negative thing, but it has the potency to create manipulative concept of love, relationships and marriages and owing to the fact that there is a lot of dependence on media on a daily basis, one cannot totally avoid having false expectations that would end up creating a lasting negative effect on the individual.
There is a faux depiction of romance on TV shows and movies which take romance to the extreme rather than the ordinary. A real relationship is faced with challenges and that is what makes it unique and interesting, rather than the mundane relationship settings exhibited by mass media. They can actually manipulate and influence their affectionate messages by stimulating, or over emphasizing a fantastical concept of a relationship.
Largely showing how unavoidable daily media intake is, it is important for those in a relationship to be aware of the necessary distinction between the love and affection we see in films and movies, and the unrealistic concept and expectations they create.
There is also a distinction between love and marriage where love is viewed as a fun filled experience and marriage a platform at which love dissolves. Marriage is and has always been portrayed as the unsuitable aftermath of weddings.
It is seen that marriage is dull and quite boring unlike weddings which are glamorous and interesting, and a common feature in movies is to have the wedding scene at the end of the movie leaving the marriage aspect to be pondered on by the viewers. This is in a considerable contrast to how relationship works in real life
The mass media has so much encapsulated and captured the minds of people drowning them in a sea of information. Movies, books, televisions and also the internet in a way influences people and the decisions they take as regards relationships.
From the information garnered, people are educated about sex, romance and relationships. However, it is unfortunate that most of the information received are biased and deceptive, and even sometimes incomplete. As a result of this fact, quite a number of people are left with unrealistic expectations of a good relationship, hence leading to future relationship problems and issues.
Media influences the minds of people, and teaches them to desire the negative tendencies and inclinations as regarding relationships. For instance, it has been a constant discussion as to how pornography negatively influences a relationship but less attention and focus has been paid to the fact that there are negative effects of mass media such as in the show case of romantic movies, overrated TV shows and also the sale of romantic books.
Moreover, a larger percent of the blame still goes to the individual who deemed it fit to purchase such movies and books rather than the impact of inaccurate and inauthentic media portrayal and social influence. As a result of this, quite a number of individuals are not aware they are misguided and for those who are actually aware and are finding it difficult to abstain may be afraid of not being labelled irrational.
It is important to note that it is even possible to have a twisted view of how the media portrays love, sex and romance but that does not mean one is crazy or abnormal, it is just a state of misinformation and misconception which has resulted in thoughts or beliefs that will not help one find through love or satisfaction with a relationship.
Letting go of false expectations one might have derived from mass media portrayal, is key in removing the influence it has on a relationship or sex life. It is good to see relationships as both individuals working to meet the needs of the other, an undergoing a cordial exchange of feelings and worth for a mutual and common relationship balance and satisfaction.
Therefore, rather than simply being focused on one side of the relationship, which may be as a result of faux expectations derived from the media, it is important to see what the two parties want in the relationship and see what they can both share.
The media has a way of shaping the minds of individuals on how they perceive relationships and sex. In most media outlets, sex and relationships are always so amazing and at every point in a relationship, it is always a bed of roses and there are little or no challenges faced and the couple or partners involved, always gets their happy ending, with their love being so sweet and effortless.
Even though there are a lot of brain-washing and deception about the concept of relationship as against the reality of life, it is quite difficult to form expectations and assumptions about love, sex and romance without the media having their role to play.
The media influences and manipulates people by making them believe in the wrong ideals of how a realistic relationship should look like, and this has a great impact on people’s relations and romance life, because they tend to fall deep into the deception that keeping a stable relationship is quite an easy task.
As a result of this deceit, they enter into a romantic relationship with a false notion of what it entails but in reality, a relationship is not that easy to manage because it involves a lot.
It is important to be aware that those involved in a relationship are quite different and have different behaviours and notions. There are times where there might be differences in views and opinions concerning a particular matter pertaining to their relationship, but a key determinant is that both are in constant communication and passionate about something which implies that there is a particular thing both partners can agree on.
Also, the media portrayal of relationship, sex and romance is not realistic because they do not face the main issues pertaining to a relationship life. They do not talk about the common struggles those in a relationship face. What they showcase usually is that either two parties engaged in a relationship are rich and financially buoyant or they are destined to be together right from childhood and that is a false and an inaccurate depiction of a realistic relationship.
It always seems so easy and always without no stress or difficulty, and sometimes very perfect according to what the media portrays. However, in reality, it is great and also very challenging but not in many means perfect.
Furthermore, the media depiction of an unrealistic relationship sets people on course for attaining unrealistic goals when they finally enter into a relationship.
Love addiction may be considered as involving in a repeated uncontrollable and negative behavior as a result of obsession over a particular person or thing. Love addiction is often regarded as a process addiction such that it is related to a form of persistent behavior that at first may result in some form of delightful feelings, and captivating thoughts and this feelings and thoughts may be described or explained as a craving for a continuous connection with the love object.
A key feature of love addiction is a belief that there are relationships which have the potency to surmount any challenge or obstacle.
Love addiction may arise from abnormalities in social learning process, which may be influenced by some mass media portrayals or some other cultural events. There are certain views and opinions that romantic love does exist in long term relationships. However, fixation is only found at the beginning of love relationships.
It is important to note that love addiction may not only arise from aberrations in social learning process, but also from developmental experiences such as formation of social attachment in childhood. Hence, if love addiction tends to stem from difficulties in attachment right from childhood, then it is possible to observe this kind of behavior occurring even in their teenage years and also adulthood.
The mass media may have an important role to play in the selling and development of love addiction. For instance, in pop music for young ones, love is connected with emotional craving and obsession, a responsive high fantasy, a longing for a loved one, obsessive thinking and imagination, romanticism and extreme or over dependence on the love object.
There are many mass media outlets that can transfer love addiction qualities via romance novels, movies, television, music, greeting cards and other online mediums. For instance, chat rooms provide a means intense, intimate and cozy relationships and communications, while leaving out or omitting a range of visual signals or reminders and mandating one to take turns in interactions. This then creates fantasies and illusions about the daily lives of other persons staying far away, and leading to an immature expression of love without having any personal or physical contact with such persons.
Love addiction shows a confined pattern of repeated behavior directed toward a love object or being and hence, leads to a negative role and other negative consequences. It is most likely depicted and established in media outlets as a means to real and true love.
Anyone who strictly abides by what the media says about love, sex and romance, would most likely not have a successful romantic relationship. The way the media portrays relationships is quite misleading, as it is painted as one which is completely controlled by emotions, making it look as if all what you need in order to make a relationship work is innate, and there is no work or logic required.
One fact about relationship is, it is an aspect of life which needs to be carefully watched and managed expertly, just like other aspect of one’s life. A relationship does not have to do with emotions and feelings alone like the media would portray it.
As regards dating, when it comes to reality, it does not really involve enjoyable moments which are romantically-attached. It is something which needs much work, tolerance, patience and strength. In the dating world, rejection is inevitable. In the dating game, rejection could occur at any point. It could take place early in the relationship, it could occur mid-way and it could also occur much later.
However, people who are in a dating relationship, should bear it at the back of their minds that for a relationship to work, it requires both parties to be contributory partners, and that one person should not just walk off, leaving the other to figure things out, this is one fact which the media does not properly explain.
At a point in the relationship when things get rocky, both parties are not expected to give up, and expect that things would get better by themselves. The media has wrongly taught that relationships which get better after a hot conflict, usually get better by chance and with time. This notion is wrong and misleading.
Also, the media has also given sex a different image. The media portrays sex as something which is urgent and very easy to undergo. However, in reality, when it comes to sex, it is an activity which must be accompanied by caution and respect. It is not usually a perfect activity as it requires understanding from both parties.
To make a relationship romantically active, it is necessary that understanding and communication are the watchwords which should drive the relationship.
We know that the media gives us unrealistic portrayals of sex, love and romance, but how do we teach ourselves not to buy into it? Most of us were affected mentally in some form by the media content we were raised with. A well-known example is the affect that Disney cartoons have had on girls. Disney is more feminist conscious now, but many of their earlier films depict girls and young women in fantastical love stories, full of unrealistic romance and fairy-tale happy endings. Correlations have been found between this kind of media diet and unhealthy expectations of relationships later in life, which can cost people relationships, time in repairing relationships and money in relationship counseling bills. So how do we train ourselves to resist the brainwashing of media portrayals of sex, love and romance?
First and foremost, we have to retrain ourselves in the way we view sex, love and romance through any means necessary. For some, this might require drastic measures. Romanticized media portrayals can cause delusions, love addiction and can even contribute to mental disorders. Professional treatment or therapy may be necessary for some. The average victim of unrealistic media portrayals of sex, love and romance is simply misguided and can usually use critical thinking and self help to adjust their thinking. It is important to remove sex, love and romance from the pedestal that media puts them on and approach them realistically by acknowledging that relationships are something to take seriously. Being frivolous, flighty or emotional about relationships will lead to their destruction.
Secondly, monitoring our media diet so that we do not take in unrealistic portrayals of sex, love and romance is very important to our continued mental health. Being selective in the media we watch will inform us of realistic ways of seeing the world, including in how we see relationships. One of the best things a person can do for their current or future romantic relationships is throw out the media that has been filling their heads with unhealthy relationship perceptions.
In comparing real life romantic relationships to romantic relationships in movies and TV shows, one can see an obvious disconnect between fact and fiction. Media romantic relationships are idealized, romanticized and unrealistic, while real life romantic relationships are messy, challenging and complex. This difference is apparent to anyone who is media literate, yet media portrayals of relationships are much more frequently unrealistic than they are realistic. This has many people wondering why our media depictions of sex, love and romance are so skewed. Sex, love and romance in relationships are something that many people hold unrealistic expectations of, and the reasons are many.
The truth is, people crave the romanticized, idealized version of relationships. Trying to determine if we crave this version of relationships because of media portrayals, or if we create these media portrayals because we crave this kind of relationship, is futile. For whatever reason, we all share a common ideal that relationships are going to be effortless, therapeutic, thrilling and rewarding, and we are all completely jarred when they are not. Media portrayals are merely the expression of these idealized, romanticized notions.
People who indulge in these romantic ideals of relationships turn them into personal fantasies. Instead of removed characters on a screen, the unrealistic notions begin to feature them in their imaginations. This is where an ideal turns into a delusion, and unhealthy thinking begins. The more entrenched someone becomes in their fantasies, the more out of touch with reality they become. Ironically, this romantic fixation makes them much less well suited for an actual relationship because they will very unrealistic expectations.
Some people take their fantasies to the next level and become addicted to them. At this level of indulgence, someone may own every romantic film and TV show ever made, they may go through relationships like changes of clothes and they may obsess over their own romantic relationships to the point that they are entirely dysfunctional. Sex, love and romance addictions are real, very destructive and warrant professional counseling.
If people formed romantic relationships the way characters in movies and TV shows do, they would look very different. Everyone’s courting would be whimsical and flirtatious, their bedroom romps magical and passionate, their differences dramatic and heart tugging and their decision to be together forever a perfect happy ending. At a certain point in adulthood, most of us come to realize that these expectations are unrealistic, yet they are steadily reinforced again and again in media portrayals. A closer inspection of these misleading media portrayals gives you a clearer picture of how far removed from reality they are.
In films and TV shows, courting and dating is always incredibly cute. Characters meet under serendipitous circumstances. Sometimes their chemistry is instant, and other times they initially dislike one another, adding to the passion of their chemistry later in the story. Fate continues to throw memorable, ironic moments their way, which they stumble and laugh and flirt their way through adorably, until that magical moment when they have their first kiss.
As we all know, kisses in most movies and TV shows logically leads straight to sex. Sex in movies and TV shows is always portrayed as good sex. It is either passionate, kinky, sweet or loving, but always good. The characters are always sexually compatible, knowing what the other wants and being in perfect harmony with one another. This great sex naturally leads to a lot more great sex.
After a certain amount of blissful new relationship time has gone by, inevitably the couple encounters the ways that they are different and a seemingly insurmountable conflict arises between them. They have a dramatic falling out, the sad music plays, and they spend a certain amount of time mourning and reflecting upon the love they had. One or both of them needs to realize something about themselves before they can be together happily.
Fortunately, for everyone involved, that lesson is eventually learned in a moment of ecstatic self-discovery when one lover runs to the other, making an enormous scene in order to profess their undying love for the other. Naturally, the other lover feels the same, and they are reunited with the suggestion that they will never, under any circumstances, part ways again.
Buying into media portrayals of sex, love and romance will not get you far in romantic relationships. The media portrays relationships as being totally driven by emotion, as if everything you need in order to navigate a relationship is intuitive, and nothing requires work or logic. The reality of relationships is that they are an area of life that needs to be managed intelligently, just like everything else. They are not a mass of effortless feelings like the media would have us believe. They are messy and confusing and disjointed, all the way from the dating to the sex to the conflicts to the resolutions.
In real life, dating is hardly all adorable moments and romantic build up. In fact, it is something that requires a great deal of bravery and strength. Rejection is unavoidable in the dating world. Sometimes it is a result of not having chemistry and sometimes it is a result of discovering a major difference between two people. Sometimes rejection comes early on and sometimes later in the dating game, but anyone dating should never forget that it is the other person’s prerogative to walk away if they want, and that they are expected to handle it gracefully. When two people are fortunate enough to make it to the next stage of a relationship, the navigation does not end there.
Sex is portrayed in the media as urgent to have and effortlessly fantastic. In real life, sex needs to be approached with respect and caution, as it is the most intimate physical act that two people can engage in. It is normally not perfect, but requires communication and adjustments in thinking in order to do well. The deeper into the relationship that two people go, the more differences they will encounter. Good decision making, compromise, conflict resolution and intelligence are required to be successful in relationships. It requires good critical thinking to know when to walk away from a relationship, and even healthy relationships require a great deal of work.