Electronic Devices and Their Effect on Marriages

According to national data, the average person spends more than four hours on their smartphones every single day. That comes out to one-sixth of a person’s life. Much of that time is spent just scrolling on social media sites, not really accomplishing anything productive. This time on the phone could be better spent, like spending quality time with our spouse. Unfortunately, it actually results in just the opposite for many couples and can cause stress and strain on the relationship.

Believe it or no, there is actually a term for this: phubbing. Phubbing is when you prefer to spend time on your phone instead of with your partner. When a spouse is dependent – may be addicted – to their phone or other electronic devices, they often act distant. This can cause the other spouse to not only feel badly about their partner’s aloofness, but they may also begin to spend more time on their phone. Now, you have both spouses sitting in the same room for hours at a time, staring at their phones or tablets, and having no interaction with each other.

Too Much Social Media?

We already know too much time spend on social media is unhealthy. Much of social media portrays a “false” version of others’ lives: the best photos, the best trips, the best relationships, the best dates, etc. This not only leads to a false impression of what someone’s life is like, but these unrealistic portrayals can also lead others to feel badly about their own lives.

For example, a spouse who spends too much time on social media sees all these posts by others portraying the “perfect relationships” and this leads them to feel badly that their spouse isn’t “perfect.” They begin comparing their spouse to what they think all the other spouses are doing based on the photos they see on Facebook. This can cause resentment and unhappiness to creep into their relationship.

Too much social media also affects the level of conversations we have. Topics become more trivial and there is also the risk of becoming less emphatic because of the overexposure to many of the negative things we are exposed to online day in and day out.

Another downside is that many couples begin communicating via text messages instead of in person. This can lead to miscommunication and misunderstandings. One spouse may read more into something their partner has text them. And that can trigger a disagreement. Texting is a poor way to work out important issues, yet many people use it as a way to avoid really working through the issue.  

Contact an Office Today

If you and your spouse are having communication issues, or any other issues that are putting a strain on your marriage, counseling in Palatine, IL can help. Call a counseling clinic today to learn how.

Thanks to Lotus Wellness Center for their insight into counseling and the effects of electronic devices on marriages.