Do We Still Need Human Contact? 

I remember a good while back Tim aka Thatcham Dad wrote this post asking. Who needs real friends when you have online ones?

Then today I got involved in a Twitter discussion about the loneliness of being a stay at home Mum and was it the same for stay at home Dad’s.


It got me thinking. I’m certainly not lonely as a SAHD and Carer. I’ve always been happy with my own company. With the exception of school runs, popping to the shops and the “Well” Irish people say as a form of greeting to passers by I’m quite happy at home with the kids. As and when required, Birthday Parties, Christenings, Weddings etc I’m well able to mingle making small talk and pretending to be the social butterfly that I’m not, for a limited amount of time. Then I use the have to get home to the kids and leave.

Social Media is a different story. I have a few followers I interact with almost daily, many others that I chat to every now and then and many, many others that I have water cooler conversations with when they tweet something interesting or they respond to a tweet of mine.

The teen spends most of his time alone in his room. When we mention he should be out there meeting the lads he says I’ve loads of friends on Snapchat.

A long time ago when I was a young adult I did what my friends did, went out and got drunk. I’ve talked about my feelings on alcohol before. I’m not comfortable in large social settings, so I end up drinking quickly and drinking way more than I should. This has the effect of making me slightly more sociable than I’d ordinarily be, but obviously leaves the after effects the next day. I’m also someone who can’t say no. So when shots are offered I’ll end up drinking it. When I say I’m leaving and people say “Ah go on have one more!” I stay for another and another and another!

We are constantly told, humans are sociable,we need human contact and other people. Being honest I don’t. The internet was just in it’s infancy back then. There was no Twitter, Facebook even the mighty Google was only a small player compared to the likes of AOL and Yahoo. There were chatrooms, full of horny men looking for sex. Never my thing.  Then there was MSN for instant chatting.

I bumbled through the next 15 or so years. Going to the pub to be sociable with work colleagues. Being a call centre shift worker there was always someone finishing their shift and stopping in for a quick pint. I was there to drink with them all.

These weren’t deep friendships though. We didn’t go to BBQ’s at each other’s houses, no invites to weddings or Christenings. I wouldn’t have gone anyway.

Fast forward to now. Mrs OMG says I’m anti social. She has been out a few times with her friends and I’m happy to stay home with the kids.

The difference now is I have Twitter. A world of friends. Always someone there no matter the time of day or night. I class people in Jersey, Australia, The USA, Malta and many other countries as friends. They probably know more about me than my neighbours!

But am I setting a bad example for my children? Should I have a group of friends? A photography club? Tennis, cookery or anyone of a dozen other things I have an interest in?

There have been conversations about attending a blogging conference or just a blogger meet up. Deep down I’m not sure I want to do this. Am I strange for wanting to keep my online friends online?

Is this all an effect of my abandonment and adoption? Do I not want to meet these people I call my friends as that then means there is a duty to keep in touch?

I really don’t know. As for the teen. He’s not in his room the whole time. He has friends on his hurling team and from school. Perhaps he’s like me and doesn’t need the company of others, or perhaps he does but is afraid of getting hurt like he was when his father walked out.

What do you think? Do we need offline friends?

photo credit: MTSOfan My Beach Comber via photopin (license)


13 thoughts on “Do We Still Need Human Contact? 

  1. I find I’m the same as you to be honest, happy to chat to people online but also happy in my own company, occasionally I do wish I had a best friend, someone just to chat to and go for a drink but mostly I’m happy with my lot.My teen has only a select few friends and a girlfriend but I don’t know if that’s because of me & how I am or because he’s happy that way, you’ve prompted a conversation!He’ll be so happy 😂

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Obvious and all as it is I will say it anyway: do what works for you, and try not to sweat it for no good reason. You’re right about a lot of social interaction … it’s transactional and pretty shallow most of the time. Thing is, I like it like that and enjoy it for what it is. I have a few close friends and that is enough for me. Online interaction is great, you put out what you want and get what you want. A fair exchange!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Haha! I think you just wrote a post about me, sometimes I think I am anti-social I don’t really have any friends but plenty of people I know to say hello too. Social media has become my friend no doubts there. And like you I wonder if I’m setting a bad example to the twins. I don’t know, I hope not but time will tell #globalblogging

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It’s certainly an interesting one. They are the first generation to grow up with smartphones from birth. The boys think nothing of asking Google or Siri things. I just feel stupid. You have at least been to a couple of meet ups and blogging conferences.


  4. I find as you get older anyway ,some friends you have filter out,needs from friendships change and you outgrow people.
    I love my own company too , I know some find that alien but headspace is necessary and even more so now in the always on world.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I do think most people need offline friends. I have a few people that I see once a week or so, just to have dinner, play board games, etc. BUT, I don’t think every person needs that. Some people are just fine without it and are actually more anxious when forced to interact, Hubster is one of them. While he’ll go out with me and socialize at dinner, he doesn’t engage with the other people very much – even though one of the husbands is his friend and coworker. #DreamTeam

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  6. I can only speak for me when I say I need both. I love my online friendships that I have made through blogging. I find them to be true and authentic. Caring people, funny people, and I need them. I also need face to face. Despite writing, I hate texting. I rather hear a voice, see a person and look them in their eyes. Sense their body language cues. Relationships for me come both ways. For you, do what works and keeps you authentically you! #globalblogging I do worry about the culture our kids will grow up in… Oy vey…

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  7. I find that I need a mix of both. I have a handful of life-long friends who I sit down with every few weeks and we bring ourselves up to speed on each other’s worlds and then return to our own chaotic lives until the next debrief. I’d be lost without them, but I tend to find that my online friends are the ones that I often find chatting to on a daily basis. I’m also lucky enough to have found friends through my blog that I’ve gone on to meet in “real life” and who have become firm friends too. It’s all about what works for each of us I guess. Thanks for linking up with #DreamTeam x

    Liked by 1 person

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