It now seems to be a fact of life that we are all addicted to our mobiles. It is, after all a thing of beauty, a piece of artwork in itself. You can do your banking, shopping, dating, work, take photos, track your children and turn on the heating if you are out. The facilities are endless. How addicted are we? It was recently in the news that about 80% of us check our phones the moment we open our eyes but even more alarmingly, about 50% of us check our phones during the night when we should be sleeping! It’s official – the world has gone mad!
And when we check our phones, we are not really checking emails (which are so blasé these days) but instead, we go directly to Facebook or Twitter or Instagram to see what is going on in someone else’s world. By doing this, social media can heighten our insecurities and confirm our worst fears about ourselves but, like any addiction, despite knowing this, we still keep going back for more. If you think you can really live without your mobile phone, try not using it for 24 hours!
As with all addictions, there are consequences.
These days, it is quite normal for a family to be at home in the evenings and every member is on their phone. There is no conversation and sometimes, people become so engrossed with their phones, that they are oblivious to what is going on around them. The other side to this is where your partner keeps his/her phone in their pocket, with a pin number and only responds to it when you leave the room or makes a slightly odd excuse to leave the room. When you ask who it was, the reply is often “wrong number” or “just a marketing call” or sometimes “Tom from work” who needs to see him/her immediately… There are also individuals who have two phones, one for work and one for personal! I have never fully understood this as it is hard enough keeping track of life and work with just one phone. It is little wonder that probably ahead of having affairs, the phone has become “the other woman” or “the other man”. A lack of communication can only eventually lead to a breakdown of a marriage.
But it gets worse. As there seems to be no such thing as privacy anymore, people share the minute details of their daily existence and yours on social media. This means that it more difficult to hide affairs or hide the snog at the office Christmas party or team building weekend. Often, the people involved don’t even realise that someone else has posted a message about them or posted an indiscreet photo of them on Facebook. And since you will inevitably be “friends” with your spouse on Facebook, guess who sees the message or the photo? Don’t get me started on the highly sophisticated and accurate voice recording facility of most mobile phones, even from inside a handbag! There is nowhere to hide. Bring on the divorce lawyers….
And finally, what about the jilted mistress or mister (I’m not even sure that is correct)? God help you if you have had an affair and then ended it. A jilted lover can be lethal on social media. Forget the rabbit boiling in hot water – this is much worse. It is a permanent digital footprint.
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Social media can kill your marriage or relationship – it’s a fact! Beware of what you do and how you do it. If you have been the victim of a marriage breakdown because of social media, come and talk to me, Venisha Shah. You can reach me on 020 8899 6620 or at firstname.lastname@example.org