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Forget flowers, send a romantic text instead

Ease of access to information and over-the-counter medication might deceive most of us into believing that we can play God or at least, doctor. However, given the steady increase in the number of emergency visits to the hospital, it's time to take your health into your own hands by leaving the diagnosis to the experts.

Remember the closing scene of The Social Network where FaceBook founder Mark Zuckerberg's character is shown repeatedly refreshing his ex-girlfriend's FaceBook page? Turns out, he isn't a minority. Of the 1,200 people surveyed for the the third annual sex survey by Shape and Men's Fitness magazines, 75 per cent admitted to constantly checking an ex-lover's FaceBook page. That's not all. A staggering 81 per cent said that they would not de-friend an ex on the popular social networking site.

Sex and relationships, Romantic texts
Representational picture

Social networking tools have successfully infiltrated the bedroom, with five per cent of respondents saying that they would glance to see who was calling, even in the middle of sex. One per cent even admitted to having 'stopped' to answer the phone. So, where does one draw the line between public and private?

Psychiatrist Dr Anjali Chhabria says, "It's a reality that's here to stay. However, when one finds that one is starting to get socially or occupationally affected, then the best thing to do is to shut off from the virtual world and get back into the real world." When it comes to the virtual world, four out of five of the women surveyed, and three out of five men, said that they believed texting, Facebook and other networking sites caused new couples to jump into bed faster.

Psychiatrist and counselor Dr Shefali Batra says that the results are not surprising given that it is easier to forge intimacy in the virtual world. "Online dating is easier, as there are fewer inhibitions. Contact also tends to be more explicit."

Dr Batra advises slowing things down in the initial stages of dating. "The ritual of courtship has been diluted. People are more open to being physical. Before, marriage was defined as the legal use of someone's body. While that no longer holds true, wooing can be a lot of fun too and (new) couples tend to lose out on that."
However, she does agree that texting can be fun too. "Texting builds on romance, and doesn't go against that." When it comes to dumping though, texting seems to be the preferred method. 43 per cent of women and 27 per cent of men admitted to be dumped via sms. "When you dump someone like that, it leave them with a lot of unanswered questions. It is the 'worst' thing you can do. It is best to meet them face-to-face," says Dr Chhabria.

Experts recommend caution when dating online. "I had a patient who met someone online a few years ago. They liked each other. The guy even flew down from London (to Mumbai) to meet her. However, when they met face-to-face, things didn't click, and the guy flew out within two days' time. It was devastating on the girl, who is still single," shares Dr Chhabria. While break-ups � online or otherwise - are never easy, the emotional damage need not be permanent. Dr Chhabria and Dr Batra advise looking ahead, instead of back. "The faster you move on, the better it is for you. Meet new people and know that there are more people who love you in this world than

They all tried to find love online...

Matthew Perry

'Cute and adorable, though pained and lonely.' That's what the former Friends actor is said to have described himself on a dating site that describes itself as the 'a like-minded matchmaking website for older women/ cougars and younger men, or older men and younger women'.
Sex and relationships, Romantic Texts, Matthew Perry

Jessica Simpson
The American singer hasn't been lucky in love after her split from her husband but if things don't work out in the offline world, the starlet has no qualms about trying her luck in the online one. "May be, who knows?" she is quoted to have said when asked if she'd try to find love online.
Sex and relationships, Romantic Texts,

Charlie Sheen
Controversy's favourite child and the star of hit sitcom Two and a Half Men was rumoured to have turned to an online dating service to find love. Though, given Sheen's reputation with the la-dies, we're not convinced that he'd turn to the net to surf for love. Why do that when you probably have certain 'exclusive' escort services on speed dial!
Sex and relationships, Romantic texts, Charlie Sheen

Jennifer Aniston
The Aquarian known to be cagey about her love life, especially post her break-up with Brad Pitt, was rumoured to have hired a pro online matchmaker. As luck would have it, salvation came in the form of actor Vince Vaughn and musician John Mayer. We're sure she met at least one of these guys in the real world first. The Mayer? Hmmm, not so sure!
Sex and relationships, Romantic texts, Jennifer Aniston

The survey
1,200 men and women participated in the third annual sex survey by Shape and Men's Fitness magazines. According to the survey:
Nearly four out of five women and three out of five men claimed that they believed texting, Facebook and other social networking tools caused new couples to jump into bed faster.
(However) 38 per cent of women say they have actually slept with a date any sooner because of digital intimacy.
Texting is the preferred way for lovers to stay in touch, with men texting 39 per cent more often than phoning, and women 150 per cent more.
70 per cent of women and 63 per cent of men use online tools to screen potential dates.
65 per cent said they had been asked out by text and 49 per cent through Facebook.
5 per cent said they glance to see who is calling and 1 per cent say they stop to answer the phone during sex.
Digital dumping is the preferred was to break up, with 43 per cent of women and 27 per cent of men reporting getting dumped via text message.
81 per cent said they wouldn't de-friend an ex on Facebook and 75 per cent admitted to constantly checking a former lover's page.

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