This is how smartphones are ruining your love life


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Have you ever heard of the term “phubbing” or “phone snubbing”? The phenomenon in which a person snubs his partner due to distractions caused by a smartphone puts a strain on relationships as much as money problems, bad s*x and kids.

phubbing? smartphone ruins relationship
PHOTO CREDIT: Gizmodo
In a research published in the January 2016 issue of the academic journal Computers in Human Behavior, the link between smartphone use and relationship health was investigated through the survey of 175 US individuals in romantic relationships. Factors like how satisfied they were with their lives and current relationship as well as the effect of smartphone use in their relationship were considered in the survey.

Study authors James A. Roberts and Meredith E. David of Baylor University in Texas came up with unsurprising results.

"We found that smartphones are real relationship downers – up there with money, s*x, and kids,” concluded the study authors.

Their findings showed that people who were at the receiving end of phubbing reported higher levels of conflict over the use of smartphone compared to individuals who reported less phubbing. Higher levels of smartphone-related conflict resulted to reduced levels of relationship satisfaction.

As expected, those who reported dissatisfaction in romantic relationship due to phubbing reported themselves to be depressed in general.

The study authors provided two explanations for the phenomenon: displacement hypothesis and smartphone conflict theory.

Displacement hypothesis states that relationships are weakened because smartphone blocks opportunities for meaningful interactions with the partner.

On the other hand, the smartphone conflict theory tags the device and its constant presence as the source of conflict that can lead to fights and eventually weaken the relationship.

“So what can we take away from all of this? Even if we act like it’s no big deal, it still stings whenever we’re phubbed by our romantic partner. In a sense, our romantic partners are choosing their phone over us,” Roberts wrote in an article for Quartz.

--Mini, The Summit Express

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