There’s no doubt about it, we’re addicted to our smartphones. For most of us, they’re the last thing we look at in the evenings and then the first thing we pick up in the morning. According to a study from Dr James A Roberts, our dependency is only growing too. For the average American, they check their smartphone around 150 times per day.
At first, this might not sound like a significant amount. However, once you take away the time we’re sleeping, the specialist believes it to be once every six and a half minutes. This has a plethora of problems, not least our relationships with partners, friends, family, colleagues, and more.
Rejection and Broken Relationships
In a relationship there are certain cornerstones that keep it successful. We need to feel trust, honesty, and also a sense that we’re needed or wanted. Unfortunately, this is where the problems arise. Often called ‘phubbing’, shortened from ‘phone-snubbing’, there’s a rising trend of partners feeling rejected as the other checks their phone. Not only is it causing small arguments in relationships, it’s becoming a leading cause of breakups and divorces - it’s quickly growing alongside children, money, and sex.
Just recently, a study was published in Psychology of Popular Media. Ultimately, they found a connection between relationship uncertainty and dependency on smartphones. What’s more, those who said their partners were highly dependent were generally less satisfied in the relationship.
At this point, we should note that it’s not the smartphone use itself that causes rifts in a relationship. Instead, it’s the addiction to checking one’s phone and the reliance on such devices.
When smartphones first entered the market, it was a great time because it meant we could check emails, Facebook, the latest news, weather, and absolutely everything without opening a laptop. We could be on the train, in a dentist waiting room, in the middle of nowhere, and still check our phones. As time went on, they went from being a luxury to a necessity and this is the problem.
Sadly, in some relationships, one partner is left feeling as though they’re in a competition. They feel the need to compete with a cellular device for the attention of their partner, and this is unhealthy. If we may refer to another study, posted in the Chicago Tribune, there’s a link between technology interrupting partners and;
- Lower satisfaction in a relationship
- Lower satisfaction in life
- Higher conflict
- Depressive symptoms
More and more, we’re allowing smartphones to interrupt and disrupt the valuable time we have with loved ones. As one dating partner sits and watches the other stare at their mobile device, it sends a message that the device is more important. From here, we get a divide and a high risk of adult relationship failure. Of course, the negative consequences of this are well documented.
Technology is important, and so is staying in touch with friends and relatives, but is it worth ignoring our partners just to endlessly scroll through Facebook or Twitter? Let’s not make our partners feel rejected and as though they need to compete for our attention. Why not reduce your smartphone use and have it as a luxury once again? Personal connections will ALWAYS be more valuable. Try reducing your reliance on your smartphone and watch what happens.
If you’re reading this on behalf of your partner, show them this article and let’s connect once again. Don’t let technology and smartphones take over the one thing that makes humans special; beautiful, complex relationships!