I included this article about “phubbing” in last week’s Friday round-up, but wanted to revisit it today since it’s kind of interesting, and also because I like the word “phubbing.” Phubbing — a combination of “phone” and “snubbing” — is when your partner/date/romantic interest is too distracted by his or her smart phone to pay attention to you. According to one study, 70% of participants “said that phubbing hurt their ability to interact with their romantic partners.” Well, I mean, yeah. It’s not exactly sexy when you’re trying to converse or make googly eyes at someone and he’s got his eyes on his phone, and then his face is all aglow with that weird bluish-florescent light of his Facebook page or whatever. Not sexy. But, I think most of us are probably guilty of phubbing maybe as often, or nearly as often, as we’re on the receiving end of the phubbing.
Apparently, the phenomenon is so wide-spread that there are various “movements” in place to stop phubbing. In Australia, there’s a campaign and website that “lets people download posters to discourage phubbing at events. There is also the anti-phubbing dinner ritual. It involves everyone at the table placing their phones on the table, face down. The first person to check their phone pays for everyone else’s meal.” Hmm… that seems… expensive? What if you’re just checking the time? Or to see if the babysitter has texted a cute picture of the kids in their PJs?!
Is phubbing a big enough deal in your life that you have, or would consider having, such rituals? Has it ever negatively affected a relationship — or friendship — enough that you had to address it? And if so, how? Are there any people in long-term relationships who don’t lie in bed looking at their phones next to their partners who are looking at their phones?