Could smartphone use be detrimental to your relationship?
If there is one device in the last 10 years that has changed the way that we live, it would almost certainly be the smartphone. That tiny device in our pockets and handbags allows us to keep in touch with the entire world with the swipe of a screen, connecting us to the internet, letting us watch television, answer emails and remain up-to-date with your social media accounts.
According to data collating website Statista, 967.78 million smartphones have been sold around the world since their invention, and that’s a number only set to rise with each new incarnation released. However positive the impact of smartphones is on human life, though, there is a distinctly negative aspect to their impact on our day-to-day lives – addiction. We look at the knock-on effect that this can have on your relationship.
A study carried out by Dr. Leslie Perlow of Harvard Medical School found that of 1,600 managers and professionals surveyed, some 44 per cent stated that they would suffer a severe level of anxiety should they be separated from their phone for up to a week – worrying numbers. With so many of us glued to our phone screens for such extended periods of time – even when we’re away from the office and in the company of our partners – it’s hardly surprising that smartphone addiction can take a toll on relationships.
It’s hardly surprising that smartphone addiction can take a toll on relationships.
Researchers at Brigham Young University have found excessive use of technology, especially smartphones, can cause notable damage to even the strongest of relationships, as well as psychological wellbeing – not a good combination for a healthy mind. The study, which encompassed the answers of 143 married or co-habiting women, stated that the devices were ‘significantly disruptive’ to relationships, and could lead to further conflict, as well as lowering overall satisfaction levels within the relationship. Why is this the case?
The definition of love is not on your screen
An article published in Psychology Today states that it’s likely down to the fact that a person who has a partner that pays more attention to their phone than they do to them feel rejected. This hurts them, and it may be just as painful as being ignored. The article goes on to illustrate this point by stating that someone excessively using their smartphone in the company of their partner may as well be saying ‘what is happening on my phone is more important than you’.
Such rejections can even interfere with psychological health – mood can fall, feelings get hurt, self-esteem plummets and even anger and resentment can build, over time.
How often are you glue to your smartphone in your partner’s presence?