Meeting the parents used to be the mark of a relationship turning serious – nowadays, it’s more likely to be when you include them on your social media.
In today’s tech-savvy world, smartphones and Facebook and Twitter appear to play an important part in new relationships.
Online smartphone retailer Envirofone surveyed couples to find out the milestones in new relationships for millennials.
It revealed one in five stalk their partner on social media before the very first date.
Meanwhile, more than a quarter will upload a picture of their new boyfriend or girlfriend within a month of getting together.
Almost half are happy to share their phone password with their new partner within the first three months and 45 per cent will
make their relationship “official” on Facebook by updating their status within the first three months.
Within that timeframe, a quarter confessed to having a picture of their new partner as their phone background.
But about a third of couples still wait at least six months before befriending their other half’s family on social media.
Maybe some are keeping their options open though as about 22 per cent of Brits admit to keeping their dating apps until at least one month into a new relationship.
Envirofone director of group marketing and online strategy Richard Mavers said: “Many couples are happy to open up online and shout about their new relationship, which is great to see.
“Whether it’s uploading a first couple selfie or making your relationship Facebook official, it’s difficult to ignore the important role smartphones play in modern day relationships.”
Finding ‘the one’ online is normal
Kayleigh Bowie-MacDonald met William Hayward online – and within months of meeting in person they’re engaged.
Nursing assistant Kayleigh, 28, and wine broker William, who’s also 28, met through dating app Happn – which shows how many times you cross paths with another member.
“While I was working at a hospital he was constantly within that area,” explained Kayleigh from Edinburgh. “I think we passed 16 times within a period. You can see who you like who’s nearby. We spoke on and off for about three months before meeting.
“He plucked up the courage to ask me out for a drink and we met in Edinburgh.
We officially started going out by November and then he proposed in February.”
Kayleigh admits she checked William out online before she met him in person.
“I had a stalk. You only see certain pictures they post on Happn, you can’t see what they like. So I looked him up on Facebook. His name on Instagram is different so I couldn’t find him there – but I did try.”
She said she also felt more secure meeting someone in person after having checked out their online presence.
“Back in the day you didn’t know about anyone or their friends or background.”
She admits she wanted to check out his photos to make sure the ones he’d posted on the app looked similar and find out more about him. “You can tell a lot through Facebook,” she admits.
The pair celebrated her birthday on Hogmanay – and that’s when they uploaded their first photo together on Facebook – just over a month into the relationship.
“We were out having lots of celebrations and that was also the first time he’d met some of my family as well as we had a big meal out which was lovely.”
Kayleigh changed her relationship status on Facebook in January – within a couple of months of dating.
Within three months she’d started using a couple picture as her background shot on her phone.
“I’d kissed lots of frogs and I knew I’d met someone good. We knew it was serious,” she explained.
“We had spoken about the future. I did have an inkling that he may ask me to marry him but maybe not so quick.”
The pair have been open from the start with sharing passwords for their phones and social media.
“He knows my passwords and I know his – there’s no secrecy which is good. I think it just happened naturally within about a month when I’d asked him to go into my phone for something. We have nothing to hide.”
Kayleigh admits social media and technology is a normal part of her life.
“It’s the thing – I don’t know what we would do without technology. It’s just normal – I don’t know any different. I find it weird if someone doesn’t have Facebook, it makes you think what could they be hiding.”