Social Networking and the 'Back Burner' Phenomenon

July 16, 2014 8:51 PM

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In his biography of President Warren Harding, The Harding Affair, author James David Robenalt reveals a number of rather steamy love letters written by Harding, who was married, to Carrie Philips, his acquaintance -- and eventual lover -- of 15 years (and which affair ended just before his inauguration).

Today, Ms. Philips could also be described as a "back burner" of Mr. Harding. That term has been defined by psychologists Jason Dibble and Michelle Drouin as follows: "A back burner describes a person with whom one is not presently committed and with whom one maintains some degree of communication, ...

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