Are you ‘phone snubbing’ in your marriage? It could be a problem – WTOP News

Too much time on your phone could be making your partner feel ignored, according to a recent study published in the journal Computers in Human Behavior.

Cellphones have changed the way we communicate, and new research shows those changes may not be good for your marriage.

Too much time on your phone could be making your partner feel ignored, according to a recent study published in the journal Computers in Human Behavior.

Researchers at Niğde Ömer Halisdemir University in Turkey call it “phubbing” or “phone snubbing,” or when couples choose to be on their phones instead of engaging in conversation with one another. And when both partners do it, it’s called “double-phubbing.”

“Phubbing behavior, which we can be subjected to (phubbee) or the doer of (phubber), manifests itself as a behavior that is widely observed everywhere in today’s technologically advanced societies,” researchers wrote.

They listed some potential reasons why people might phub: Mobile game addiction, social media addiction and depression.

According to researchers, phubbing can cause rifts in social relationships because it leads the culprit to defy some expected norms of communication, like making eye contact and offering feedback during a conversation.

The researchers were especially interested in how phubbing impacts romantic relationships — particularly, married couples.

“Although cellphones and other technological devices serve as productive tools in people’s lives, researchers investigating the effects of phubbing agree that interruptions from these devices can cause problems in romantic relationships,” researchers wrote.

For this study, researchers surveyed more than 700 married individuals in Turkey. Respondents ranged in age from 20 to 60 years old, with an average age of 37. Men and women were represented nearly equally in the survey sample, with about 51% of the responses coming from men and roughly 49% from women.

Most respondents — over 68% — had been married for between two and 15 years. More than 27% had been married for 15 years or longer.

Researchers found from the survey responses that while some people feel less lonely when on their phones, others feel cut off when their partner prefers to talk or text, leading to less satisfaction in the marriage.

Survey participants expressed feeling “more conflict and less intimacy” in their marriages when their partner phubbed often, as well as feelings of anger, resentment and retaliation.

According to the study, not only are phubbing behaviors correlated with less marital satisfaction — they’re also widespread in our society.

“Although it is felt that phubbing has become a socially acceptable behavior, it is stated that these individuals experience feelings of anger, regret and self-reproach while ignoring or being ignored by others during face-to-face interactions,” researchers wrote.

Researchers say there’s an easy fix that could help improve your relationships — just put down your phone.

“As seen, excessive smartphone use may lead to missing or losing opportunities for in-person interactions,” researchers wrote.

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