Smartphones Can Prevent Parents From Cultivating Feelings of Connection With Their Children

Smartphones have become so much a part of our lives that, for some people, they’re almost a part of their bodies. Unfortunately, the phones are instruments of “communication” that PsyPost says are all too often undermining true interpersonal communication with those whom we love most, including our children. Sadly, new research shows that smartphones not only undermine parents’ quality of attention with their children, but instill lower feelings of connection with them, making the time you spend with your children less meaningful than it would be sans phones.

Aside from the fact that wireless technology is likely having severe repercussions for our health, especially that of children, the very idea that we are so addicted to this technology that we forego interpersonal communication with our children is tragic. On average, people check their smartphones a mindboggling 150 times a day, or every six minutes, and 46 percent say they couldn’t live without them — with many prefer texting over real-life conversations.

I’m sure you’ve seen it many times: A family taking their seats in a restaurant, then one by one pulling out their individual cellphones to examine until the food comes, after which they check their phones repeatedly as they’re eating. Toddlers are even given their own little digital devices, to which their eyes remain glued as if they’re mesmerized instead of taking in the world around them and engaging with real people and real situations that help them grow socially and emotionally.

Much of this can be attributed to social media, which by its definition is supposed to make you more connected, but in the end all this connection comes at a price that can be interpreted as nothing less than disconnection. If you’re wanting to become reconnected with family, start by not allowing cellphones at the dinner table whether you’re at a home or in a restaurant. Also insist on putting your phone down for designated family times or when you’re socializing with friends. Setting “unplug” times for yourself can also help you plug into personal conversations and, ultimately, a reconnect with your loved ones.

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