What did we ever do before we had that handy little thing known as a phone? In the old days, before we had these neat little devices, we were forced to communicate with one another by speaking or writing on paper. In today's technology-centered society, we seem to have forgotten how to exist without a screen and a ding to tell us when to wake up, when to go somewhere and now these handheld gadgets can tell us when to drink water. We revolve around our phones, our laptops, and tablets. Since the introduction of cell phones, our society has become as addicted to them as an addict is addicted to a substance. Otherwise healthy relationships are destroyed, families are ripped apart, and we have lost our sense of self through the overuse of phones and like technology.
When the Phone Is the Center of Attention
Where once relationships involved actual verbal and physical communication between the couple, now it is the practice to devote our time to scrolling, clicking and swiping. This practice has desensitized us to the needs of our partners to the point we become two people, living in the same structure but revolving in orbit of one another rather than being an active participant in a relationship. This disconnect is not always recognized when at first it is created, but when one party is in need and the other is unavailable and unaware. By putting our addiction to the phone ahead of the needs of our partner it is causing harm to our partner and thus the relationship. The health of a relationship is dependent upon both parties being actively present and participant in nurturing the union. A relationship takes work, mutual trust and goals. When the focus is on social media or gaming, we are ignoring our own needs in the relationship. We do not need to like and comment, we do not need to see what someone else ate for dinner and we do not need to reach the next level in a game. We need love, devotion and connection with one who shares our goals.
Getting to Know You...
In years past, the dating phase of any potential long term relationship was a time of active participation in conversation and joint participation in activities for the sole purpose of becoming better acquainted with a potential partner. This course of conduct led to either an end to the casual state of a relationship as the parties involved were not compatible, or the deepening of the relationship if parties were compatible. Nowadays, dates have become a thing of the past. It is now the norm to meet a potential partner through a service or social media and spend some time exchanging texts and calls before a "meet cute" or worse, "Netflix and chill." During these interactions however, little time is spent in any activity that allows for real communication between two people. One or both will be on the phone, communicating with others or simply scrolling through social media. This is as a result of our reliance on the impersonal communication we participate in via texting and commenting. By limiting our personal communication to electronic interactions we are contributing to our own inability to communicate on a personal level. Social media is flooded with posts reading "I didn't know he/she was like that." This is a direct result in the lack of active participation in learning who your potential partner really is, if they are compatible and where their values lie. By spending time scrolling, clicking, and swiping, we are not connecting on a personal level and developing a mutual understanding of who this person really is and what they want. We are not looking at compatibility by participating in activities or communication. By putting our focus on our gadgets instead of the person in front of us, any potential relationship is doomed before it begins, simply because we do not know who they really are and what they really want.
Since the year 2000, the number of marriages has declined and the number of divorces in the U.S. has increased, 92% of these divorces included cell phone or other tech media as evidence of infidelity. Why such a sharp increase in divorce and infidelity? Cell phones, and other related devices, have made communication with anyone anywhere readily available. Instead of a couple addressing issues within the marriage, or relationship, and working out the differences it is now easier than ever to make ourselves feel better during times of stagnancy or disagreement. We have become a society that seeks instant gratification and validation for any unpleasant emotion or state of being. We no longer look first to remedy a problem, but instead seek only to make ourselves feel better. The rush and excitement of a new relationship, new course in a relationship or marriage is naturally short lived. Once "the new wears off" we may become bored and pick up our phones seeking this excitement through engagement in conversation with someone new. This rush we feel when first we meet a potential partner is readily available with a click and swipe. This is when one may respond to someone who has commented on a picture of us on social media, or go even further and join a chat or dating site. Trust becomes a casualty of electronic communication. Our partner will begin to suspect something is amiss, this is the first wound to a trusting relationship. Once trust is compromised, positive action must be taken or it will continue to disintegrate. Soon, we may become obsessed with what our partner is doing on the phone, who they are talking to and the nature of the conversation. This is trust destroyed. We may look for moments when the phone is unattended and quickly begin to look through texts and social media accounts. When we find the phone is locked, we are even more convinced our partner has something to hide. At this point, our relationship may be harmed beyond repair as trust is very delicate and difficult to restore.
Put the Phone Away
In order to remedy the disease of phone addiction there is but one method: put the phone down and give your attention to your partner. Set aside some time every day that is dedicated to verbal and physical communication with your partner. If you are in a new relationship, what was once called "dating," leave your phone in your purse or pocket. Take time to talk to your potential partner, participate in physical activities like walking in a park. Most importantly, listen and respond to your partner. It is perfectly normal to disagree, but in that disagreement be active in seeking a solution. No relationship is perfect, none is without some level of disagreement. It is the commitment between you as a couple to overcome and solve problems you may encounter. If a marriage has become boring or stagnant then what can you do to rekindle the flame? What was the first thing you noticed about your partner? What attracted you in the first place? Become the person you were, even if just for an evening, do the things you once enjoyed or explore something new together. Without the phone. Go to a place where there is no service and take pictures of yourselves having fun on a hike, swimming, or kayaking together. Be present in the moment, not dwelling on past hurts or worrying about what will happen tomorrow.
Return to Romance
It is possible to rescue a relationship from the edge of divorce or separation. By putting the focus on your partner and putting your phone away, you create the opportunity to connect with one another. This is just as important in a new relationship as it is in a marriage of many years. The act of seeking instant gratification to salve wounds or break boredom is killing marriages and disconnecting us from one another. New relationships are doomed from the beginning as couples are not actively participating in conversation with one another. The needs of our partners are being ignored, trust is destroyed and relationships are torn apart by the reliance on electronic band aids. Divorce is at an all time high and there are fewer marriages now than any time in the past as many relationships do not make it that far. We are not taking time to really connect with a potential partner, understand who they are and what they want in a relationship. Why? Because we are on the phone. We are liking and sharing, scrolling and popping bubbles. We are not actively participating in the building of a relationship that is based on mutual understanding, destroying trust in existing relationships and ignoring one another. Put the phone down, close the laptop and hide the tablet and take time to know your partner.
Turn It Off and Live!
About the Creator
I am Lady Red, as a Tarot practitioner and YouTuber. I have heard so many crazy stories about life, love and the pursuit of happiness. I'm here to share my experiences with you, guide you and entertain you!