Do you often feel ignored when your partner is surfing on their mobile phone? Is it true that your time with each other and concentration has been affected by texts, emails, or online games? Is too much internet surfing spoiling your relationship, and you are unable to find a solution?
You're not the only victim. Every other husband or wife has been facing the same situation on this planet for the last couple of years.
Researchers have given a new name to this— 'Technoference'. The literal meaning is ’Interference of Technology.’ This is not only damaging our relationships but also affecting the psychological health of our partners.
Earlier, sex, money, and kids were the topics of discussion between couples, but now topics and stories from the internet have taken their place. For instance, when you come back home from the office, your wife tells you about an interesting story she has just read on Facebook or a fatal incident that took place in an unheard of place, instead of sharing the experiences she had from her day. Endless topics from the world of the Internet are discussed between the two of you till you both go to sleep.
There was research done on ‘Technoference’ where the researchers recorded the opinions of over 100 married couples. The vast majority of them reported that mobiles and computers were lowering the quality of their relationships considerably. It is not only making people depressed and but also decreasing their satisfaction in life.
You would be surprised to discover that when you replace the internet with quality time spent with your partner, it not only makes your partner depressed but also makes them annoyed. Yes, annoyed! You heard that right. If I explain this a little more clearly, the word 'annoyed' would be replaced by the word ‘hurt’. You hurt your partner's feelings, whether knowingly or unknowingly when you ignore them just to surf the internet for a few more moments.
Why is that so?
Because this habit and gesture simply gives the harsh message that, “Whatever I am looking at on my phone is more important than you" or "I am more interested in the Internet world than you.” In an extreme case, you are indirectly saying “you are not worthy of my time or care.”
If you think these kinds of rejections are small things and that they don't matter, then you are missing the point. If your partner comes to you to find some solace or to talk about something personal and you show this kind of attitude, it will not only affect the psychological health of your partner but also create a gap in your relationship.
Most couples make another mistake. If they see that there is no topic of discussion between them to discuss, they instantly pick up their mobile and start surfing the internet. Hold on, have you forgotten the time when you used to lie in your partner's company without saying anything? Then why the hell do you now pick up your mobile just to fill the emptiness between the two of you? Just because it has become a habit or do you find the internet more interesting than your partner? Think about this deeply.
You must understand that these small rejections are going to create a big gap in your relationships in the long run. Don’t turn to your mobile in the middle of a conversation because it hurts the feelings of others, and sometimes results in a drop in their mood and self-esteem as well. Many times, your partner gets angry because of this nonsense behavior of yours but keeps their anger inside which is also a dangerous sign.
If you believe that Technoference might be causing difficulties in your relationship, consider working together with your spouse to address this problem through these 5 steps.
Talk about the issue:
At least start the conversation on the excessive use of technology in your home. It should be a healthy discussion, not one where you just want to prove yourself right. Just relax and tell them exactly how you feel when you find your partner is on the phone all the time.
Acknowledge the presence of technology, don’t oppose it
Technology, like the internet, in today’ s time, is a necessity and an unavoidable part of our lifestyle. It could be involved in someone’s job responsibility as well. So it is better to discuss and define the line between necessity and over-dependency.
Accept that you are using the internet beyond a limit
I always stress on, “Acceptance is the key.” One should not lie about his or her over-dependency and indulgence on the Internet. Instead, they should try to cut down the excess time they spend on it.
Have fair expectations
Discuss with your partner on how both of you can maintain a balance between your digital and actual life. Talk about how you should respond and behave when there is no use of technology.
Set a timeline
Try to minimize or even restrict the uses of mobile phones especially in your bedroom or at dinner time, so that you can set your phones aside and spend quality time with your partner.
These are little steps that will help you to cut down on excessive Internet use. I hope you find these helpful, and I will see you in the next article.