At last, there’s a science-backed reason behind all those romantic, googly-eyed status updates and couple photo shoots that blow up your Facebook News Feed every day. Thanks to an original video from Science of Us, we can begin to understand exactly what compels someone to type, “I love my hubby wubby!” 10 times a day and actually press “send” afterward.
It’s called “relationship-contingent self-esteem,” and yes, you can actually be diagnosed with it. The video authors simply define it as “an unhealthy kind of self-esteem that comes from romantic relationships.” RCSE has been long linked to a lower overall self-esteem as well as a higher level of social anxiety.
More interesting, new research has also found that those with RCSE are more likely to post about their relationships on social media—often in a way that can be perceived as a humblebrag to others. This type of social media behavior is also more common among introverts, who may feel more comfortable sharing their lives with friends and family members over social media than in person.
But before you allow this information to validate your irritation, keep in mind that these posts don’t necessarily mean the couple is overcompensating. “According to researchers, many of these couples may be just that happy. And listen—you can always unfollow.” We hear that.
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