While social life and networking might be on the same line together, connecting people in their different yet similar ways, neither one should affect the other negatively.
Aside from the negative side and the conflict social networks do to social life, there are many pros in the equation.
When kids move from one school to another, they go through a small depression period because the friends they have made are gone and they are going to make new friends. Somehow, this fear is not only in the hearts of the young, but in fully grown men and women. When people move from a city to another where they have had no experience, their life becomes boring even to the point of both helplessness and hopelessness. Where we are distant from our relatives and it is hard to make friendships, a social network comes in handy.
Many of us tend not to speak 100% honestly to people we personally know. Aside from social networking, but rather network socializing and meeting new people online, it becomes easier to open up and speak to a complete stranger rather than a person who is extremely close to us in fear that we might be judged by those whom we care for.
While it might be dangerous to speak to someone and get attached to someone on the internet, with all the fake persons and profiles, it becomes easier to socialize even with the people we know online. For instant, you can speak your mind more freely to someone whose judgment you fear. Your friends might find it hard to understand you until you choose to explain something on the internet to them; taking your time in the explanation and utilizing the language and description more freely.
As the point of networks might not be to make new friends, there is no shame in making new friends online; but with limits that do not affect your safety. There is no shame in speaking to your own close friends online more freely than you do in life.
But the shame comes when you choose to live your social life wholly depending on the internet connection and whether it is on or off.
You use social networks perfectly when you ask for help or update your news feed or tell people what happened to you or how your day was, as long as you keep your personal life to yourself and the people you entrust it with.
It's a perfect mean to get back in contact with people you haven't spoken to for a while and a perfect mean allow people to know whether you're abroad or sick or in need of help.
Social networking could be a tool that would make you very lonely, or a tool to get back your social life no matter what. Whether you chose to disappear for a few weeks or recently moved from a place to place, you can make new friends, or get back in touch with those whom you haven't seen in a while. Maintain a healthy social life and grow it more but do not fully depend on the internet life.