Post-Valentine’s Post

Posted on: Sunday, February 24th, 2013
Posted in: Unplugging, Blog | Leave a comment

A recent article from McClatchy describes our lust for technology—smart phones, SM, TV, games—and the fact that we are not alone. That is, our life partners likely share this myopic desire. And that’s wreaking havoc on relationships.

Having trouble connecting with your S.O.? It’s probably because they’re instead connecting with other people virtually nonstop. Who hasn’t seen the couple on a date giving googly eyes not to each other, but to their phones? Who hasn’t heard about break-ups (and hook-ups) done entirely via text messages?

Consider the habits of 18 to 34 year-old women, the most heavy users of SM:

  • 39% refer to themselves as “Facebook addicts”
  • 34% get on Facebook first thing in the morning (before going to the bathroom or brushing their teeth)
  • 21% check Facebook in the middle of the night.

The psycho community has taken note. Psychologist David Greenfield, who founded the Center for Internet and Technology Addiction, notes that checking digitalia hundreds of times a day generates dopamine, that feel-good chemical associated with addiction.

In some countries, boys are routinely sent away to rehab camps to try to break their gaming habit.

Then there’s multitasking. Though some researchers dispute whether the human brain can truly “do” more than one thing at a time, many folks sure do try. One practice that keeps growing in popularity is, of course, watching TV while surfing your computer. That habit grew by 34.5% in 2009.

So what’s a partner to do? Perhaps just “being together,” which is to say in the same room and in the flesh, is going to be about as good as it gets. Oh well, if the relationship feels distant and reticent, you can always text each other.

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