We are so accustomed to using Google that it has now become almost a tradition to search answers on it for all our questions. But what happens when you ask Google for relationship advice?
Top 10 Most-Searched Questions on Google About Relationships
10. What Does A Healthy Relationship Look Like?
One of the most searched questions was knowing what a healthy relationship looked like. This is the perfect example that shows how much we rely on technology these days. And there is an enormous amount of toxicity oozing out of it.
The problem with this question – The biggest problem with this question is that it perfectly portrays how much we take Google for its words. If you are in a healthy relationship, you would know it. You would feel it. If you are in an abusive relationship and still manage to feel loved and respected no matter how wrong that is, it must be healthy for you because relationships are subjective. You cannot rely on an AI (Artificial Intelligence) to give you a list of qualities that your relationship must have. It will be a general list of crowd-pleasing characteristics.
For instance, your boyfriend could be shabby and lazy but might love you and respect you too much. However, just because your Google search tells you that your partner is not the right one for you, you might try to question your relationship with him.
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9. How Do You Know Your Relationship Is Over?
Another question that makes the list of the top 10 most searched questions on Google is how do you know your relationship is over. Before I address what the problem with this question is, I’d first like to throw some light on what is wrong with us. We, as humans, are constantly seeking validation from others. And this has increased after the emergence of social media. You know with the likes and the long list of followers!
The problem with this question – The primary reason that this question is wrong is that you are asking a search engine to tell you if your relationship is over, which, again, is completely subjective. This is something that you should be feeling internally before you go out and search about it. And if you need a blog to give you top 13 reasons to break up, maybe your relationship is not over yet.
8. How To Get Out Of A Toxic Relationship?
The 8th most asked question on Google in the year 2017 was how one could get out of a toxic relationship. Finally, a sensible question. This question is about asking for genuine help, which is valid because we all require some kind of advice when we feel that we are stuck somewhere. But again, instead of approaching a human being with actual emotions and an ability to reason, we are asking an AI to provide us with the solution.
The problem with this question – As mentioned above, the biggest problem with this question is that although technology has proven very useful to us for every other thing, using it to get answers to real-life problems is next to stupidity. The only people you should be asking this question to is a professional or a confidant(e) who knows exactly what your situation is like. Someone who would be able to give you a personalised piece of advice rather than one that is given to everyone.
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7. How To Get Over A Relationship?
Two things to remember when asking Google for relationship advice is that it does not know your problem personally and that the advice may or may not be written by an expert. And the latter is something that should worry you the most. Asking this kind of a question online seems like an instinct because it is so convenient and it is certainly better than talking to an actual person. We all get it because we are all the same. But you should also be aware of the problem with this question.
The problem with this question – Somehow Google has become a part of our everyday existence. In fact, we can all vouch for the fact that it has taught us more than any educational institute could have. And for that, we should be grateful. It is true that Google has everything, but there is something that it has no prior experience in. And that is relationships and dating. So, it is similar to asking how to get a divorce to someone who has never even been in a relationship ever! When you put it like that, it makes complete sense, doesn’t it?
6. What Is An Open Relationship?
Most of the people who are asking this question are either doing it out of curiosity or interested in being in this kind of an arrangement. And considering where today’s dating scenario is leading to, it seems as if people would much rather have their cake and eat it at the same time instead of sticking to monogamy.
The problem with this question – Polyamory and open relationships are becoming exceeding common these days. Surely you would not get to see either one of them in Indian society because it is not being practised so openly. At least for now. However, most of our beloved Bollywood celebrity couples, who are #couplegoals for so many of their fans, are the ideal example of how open relationships can’t work for too long. So, if you are looking for this question just out of curiosity, you are all right. But if you are searching for it because you are looking to get into an open relationship, you should know the responsibility and the rules of such an arrangement very clearly.
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5. How To Save Your Relationship?
To understand what is wrong with this question, let us take a hypothetical situation. You are drowning in a sea while being surrounded by a gam of sharks. Being all alone, you neither have a life jacket nor a boat that you can get on. Suddenly, you realise that you have a phone and yay! You have got reception. In the middle of the sea. That is miraculous, isn’t it?
So, while the sharks are still deciding whether they want to kill you or not, you quickly dial your mom’s number and ask her how you can save yourself from losing too much data on your phone. Wait. What? That did not make any sense. That’s right because just like this question, this hypothetical story and its awkwardly written premise do not make sense.
The problem with this question – Why would you call up your parent who perhaps is not even tech-savvy and ask about how to save data while you are drowning? Similarly, Google is not a dating expert. And your question is totally vague. How to save your relationship from what? It is incomplete. It is impossible for even an expert to answer that question with that amount of information. Google works on keywords. And that is the only filtering it is capable of doing.
4. What Is A Poly Relationship?
There is very little to explain here because the problem with this question is the same as the one with the 6th question. However, what you should understand is that polyamory and open relationships are two entirely different concepts. In a poly relationship, everyone who is involved is allowed to have multiple partners. It is okay to fall in love with these partners if you do. However, it should be strictly causal if you are in an open relationship. Exploiting the concept for your convenience may not be acceptable in either of the two relationships.
The problem with this question – See question 6.
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3. How To Build Trust In A Relationship?
Seriously? And this is the third most-asked question on the internet. Our generation is seriously messed up because we ask Google the answers to any darn question. It would not be too long before we actually look up “how to ask Google a question?” while actually typing it. Sounds dumb now but mark my words, this might just turn out to be real.
The problem with this question – The fundamental element that relationships are lacking these days is communication. People have become so used to interactive AI that it is painful for them to put their phones aside and talk to the people around them. And that is exactly what an overdose of technology is.
Here is the answer to the question – observe your partner. Interact with them. Learn about their likes and dislikes. Know what pushes their buttons and what gives them joy. And once you know them well enough, you would know exactly how you can build trust in any of your relationships. Because there is no shortcut to gaining someone’s trust. Unfortunately, it can’t happen in a day.
2. How To Change Your Relationship Status On Facebook?
Okay. This seems like a genuine problem because we have people here who really want to know how to change their relationship status on Facebook. Let’s dive into the problem straight away.
The problem with this question – This is personally the biggest problem that I have with people using technology. So, I recently bought my mom an iPhone because I could not bear to watch her use her sad Samsung. I called her a week later to check how she was getting along with her new phone, and she told me that she had just managed to understand how to make and receive calls and send texts (despite me teaching her for two days before leaving). Fast forward to a month later, and she is still struggling to use her FaceTime.
My problem is that she spends most of her free time on her phone. And instead of learning about it and exploring it, she wastes her time chatting on Facebook. Blatant misuse of a great phone. Similarly, my cousin bought his iPhone 7 Plus two years back and he found out about FaceTime last week. And guess what? My mom was the one who told him about it! So, you see, even if I cut my mom some slack for being from another generation, what excuse does my brother have?
That is what is wrong with us. We are not too thrilled about learning about the things we have. Instead of asking Google how to change the relationship status on Facebook, this lot of incredibly clever individuals might have simply gone to their settings, explored a little and found out that it is one of the easiest things to do. But by God’s grace, we have become so lazy that doing a little in-app search seems like a more strenuous task than going to another app, waiting for it to load, typing down the question, seeing the results, and getting redirected to another website for the answer does.
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1. How To Make A Long-Distance Relationship Work?
And finally, the most-searched relationship advice on Google is how to make a long-distance relationship work. Well, this is by far the only remotely acceptable question on this list. And unlike the above question, I would not be making a sarcastic remark on this one. Long-distance dating is difficult. And only the most mature ones can survive because the distance really tests the strength of the relationship. But again, this question is not perfect, and it certainly does not deserve to be asked on Google.
The problem with this question-
You might find some satisfaction after seeing at least a thousand results for your question, but you should not be asking Google for the answer. Simply because every long-distance relationship is unique. No two relationships are the same. So, what might have worked for the writer who is writing the blog may probably not work for you at all. Which means it is highly likely that you are knocking on the wrong door.
So, what happens when you ask Google for relationship advice?
You are giving technology the right to make your decisions for you
One thing that you might have picked up from my above rant is that technology is not the most reliable source to get your relationship advice from. In fact, asking Google to solve your relationship problems is like asking a child to teach an adult how to walk. It has no prior experience whatsoever. Also, if you feel the advice that you get from Google works for you, remember that when you are not really interested in giving someone advice, you tell them “do what your heart tells you.” The most general statement packaged as an incredibly philosophical piece of advice that works just as well as a bunch of placebos.
What you are getting is futile, bot-generated advice
When you ask Google for relationship advice, you are giving your life in the hands of an AI. It is not capable of giving you sane advice, but it has mastered the art of picking up keywords. It takes your keywords, waits for the spiders to crawl through the web pages to find the best results (even verbatim) and present it in front of you like it actually cares about your question. Sometimes, you don’t even know the source of information, and you still choose to take it because we are hammered with the notion ‘something is better than nothing.’
Relationship advice on Google is just like medical advice
Speaking of the source of the information, how many times do you actually take the effort of going to a website that has experts writing its content for it? Don’t bother lying because we are accustomed to taking the first thing that we see. That is not great advice, that is brilliant marketing.
There are very few websites that actually hire experts to write their content for them. Most website owners don’t even know who is writing for them because they have a contract with a content provider who looks after the content section of the web page. These writers are paid so less that research is not something that they can afford to do. So, they resort to reading two or three blogs at the most and paraphrase the information just to avoid plagiarism. With all this, do you think you can rely on the answers that you are getting on Google?
There are no experts most of the times. When you type your question in Google, it magnifies your problem. Immediately, your problem goes from being ordinary or manageable to being the end of the world. Just like every time you have a common rash, you have herpes. Google logic!
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You are trying to compare apples and oranges
I have mentioned in this blog time and again that Google’s advice is extremely impersonal and of very less use. So, when you Google your problems, you are reading a piece of advice that is given to another person’s relationship. And no matter how much their problem seems similar to yours, your relationship is still going to be different from theirs.
You are likely to ignore your mistakes over your partner’s
More often than not, when you type in a question on Google, it is from your point of view. Your partner’s perspective is not even taken into consideration. You tend to victimise yourself in the question, which allows you to get only biased answers. This does not happen when you ask a professional or a confidant(e) for relationship advice because their ultimate goal isn’t to give you results in less than 0.25 seconds. They would ask you about your and your partner’s views on the situation. They would try to give your problem an emotional take. And above all, they would not take you for your word immediately. They would help you introspect and come to a solution yourself through an unbiased and useful interaction. A healthy way to resolve relationship problems!