Put Down Your Phone

Posted by Dexi

You may often think back to times when smart phones did not exist. What did you do for entertainment while you were in line at Walmart? What did you do to pass the time on the toilet? How many minutes did you waste jotting down or printing off MapQuest directions?

Did you pay more attention to your kids?

I’m going to lay it flat out: my phone obsession causes my children to suffer.

I’ve been zoned out scrolling through my Facebook newsfeed, seeing the same posts for the twelfth time, when I’m interrupted by an AHHHHHHHH! I look to my right and see my one and a half year old falling off of a chair and crashing to the floor beneath her. Or maybe it’s a little less serious and she instead has ripped every butt wipe out of the package, littering the entire living room, because I am absorbed in my silly online world.

Now, that’s a pretty ballsy (and embarrassing) thing to admit to the masses. But I know I’m not the only one who has compromised my child’s well-being while staring at the same ol’ Kermit image with perhaps a different saying, such as this:

Sometimes you may even justify it: Well, I was reading an article about how cow’s milk is bad for my toddler, so it’s OK if I was on my phone for a few minutes instead of hanging out with them.

And I think that is fine sometimes. Everything is OK in moderation, right? But I am so bad. It’s an addiction. A dependence. Plainly, it’s a problem.

“Mom!! Why won’t you answer me?” my three year old will ask.

“Huh?”

“Mom! You not listening to me!”

And she’s right. I haven’t heard a word she has said, because of what? Because I’m doctoring up a picture of HER on Instagram. I’m ignoring her for a picture of HER.

I used to hate smart phones. I remember telling my husband, probably before he was even my husband, that I never wanted him to have a smart phone, because he would be on it all of the time. But it’s me who is wasting my life away on a cellular device. He’s actually very good about not over-using his Samsung Galaxy S7 Active.

And I once watched an episode of True Life on MTV. I think the title was “True Life: I’m Addicted to my Phone.” I recall seeing a young woman eating at a restaurant with her family. She got very upset with her husband/boyfriend, whatever he was, when he snatched her phone away. She snapped at him something like, “You made me miss Darcy’s latest post on my newsfeed!” I laughed at her and thought she was ludicrous. I would never be like that.

And now I am.

Sometimes we may say, “I’m too busy,” or “I have too much going on. I don’t have time to cook dinner.” But are we really that busy, or are we just on our phones too freaking much?

So how do I bring this madness to a halt?

I’ve tried deleting all of my overused apps. I’ve turned off my notifications. Last week I told my husband that I would not use my phone when I was with our kids. It always works for a few days, but then I go back to my old habits.

I need someone to hold me accountable. I need you to hold me accountable. If you know me in real life and you see me on my phone excessively, call me out on it. If you see me posting on Facebook more than a couple of times a day, please, give me a proverbial kick in the arse. I promise I won’t be mad or hold it against you. I’m begging you told tell me.

And if you have the same problem as I do, please, ask others to also hold you accountable. Our kids deserve it. Our society needs it.

I just told my husband that I was writing a blog post about being on my telephone too much. His response? “Did you use your phone to write the post?” Har har, Benjamin.

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35 thoughts on “Put Down Your Phone

  1. I wish my whole family would unplug more.

  2. I know i’ve been guilty of this…constantly working on having balance. 😊 Great post!

  3. Love it! Guilty mom over here but trying to get better!

  4. (Why it is capitalizing everything, i do not know!) I just got fb a year ago, and I don’t know where the year went…. great read!

  5. I love the part about Having another adult holding us responsible! It is so important to get down to their level and make eye contact when they are talking! I think we can all us little reminders like this! Great post Dexi!

  6. I don’t like when adults can’t get off their phone to talk to me, but I know I’ve been guilty of doing it and try really hard not to! I tru to stay off my phone around my kids, but no way am i perfect.

  7. I have a similar issue. I try to only do business on my phone when my kids are with me, or nothing at all. I don’t like phones at supper, or right after school when I need spend time with my kids. I don’t like when adults can’t get off their phone to talk to me, but I know I’ve been guilty of doing it and try really hard not to!

  8. Great post, thank you!

  9. I, too, am guilty of this. Im sure many of us are!

  10. Good POST…As I sit here reading it on my phone while my children play in the other room. I SPEND too much time on my phone too.

  11. I have the same struggle. It also drives me crazy when I’m trying to talk to someone and they won’t even look at me and they stare at their phone. I always tell myself I would never do that but I know I am guilty as well. I would totally hold you accountable and you do the same for me! 😉

  12. First of all, i am not shouting. This website is typing all in caps and my keyboard can’t control it. Second of all, i’d like to chime in on the vote to get rid of cell phones for a year….and possibly forever save for emergencies. whenever i’m sitting at an airport, everyone is hooked up to some device. we’re all missing great opportunities to meet new people.

  13. I WOULD TOTALLY BE ON BOARD WITH A CELL FREE YEAR!

  14. Our phones are evil and suck the life out of us. And sometimes are helpful. 🙂 Good post.

  15. Here’s my second attempt at a comment! The first one must not have posted.

  16. I can definitely relate to this. Thanks for sharing!

  17. Thanks for sharing. I am so guilty of this in my own life. It’s a good reminder to set down the phone 🙂

  18. I am so guilty of this.

  19. I’m so guilty of this. I really could use some accountability IN this area, but not sure how to get it. Maybe I can do sticker rewards like my daughter gets. Lol!

  20. I too get way to involved in my phone and social media. I try not to get involved until my children go to sleep. But that’s not always the case. Someone might text, or I have an email!! Like it won’t all be there whenever I decide to go back and look. Very good blog!!

  21. Thanks for sharing this. I have Been feeing lately that i need a phone cleanse. I want to go data-free for a year. 😳 I dont know whether i have the courage to try, but i really struggle to be moderate with phone use. Uggggh

  22. I hear ya girl! I do a no phone until after dinner rule!

  23. Guilty.

  24. Not sure if it worked the first time but I’m not writing it AGain… great job DEXi. You’re an awesome mom. But i still laugh at your stories.

  25. why is everything capitalized!!! Great blog. An all Too real battle. It’s wierd seeing even from not that long ago how much less people debate a topic because you can just look it up in .5 seconds on google. What a world we live in.

  26. My phone won’t let me do this commemt!! SPeaking of phoneS….! This is my 3rd attempt. I’m ready to chuck this thing in my hand! I don’t like how i waste so much time on my phone. Great blog, Dexi.

  27. I deal with this Problem daily! I am trying to be better about it. My biggest Problem is being obsessed with my dogs and wanting to post pictures of them everywhere!

  28. I didn’t FOLLOW THE LINK TO READ AND COMMENT BECAUSE I HAD ALREADY SPENT TOO MUCH TIME on my phone! Yes, it is a problem at times.

  29. Guilt! My kids won’t talk to me when I am TEXTING anymore because they know I don’t hear a word they say😯

  30. Loved this! Very True,I can also understand the desire when you are at home with little people to want to reach out to grown up life on other planets, but the fact that you are noticing you are on your phone too much says something.Some people do not care enough to admit it is a distraction.You are an awesome Momma, One that takes the time to DO fun things with your children. Adventuring outdoors, putting your time into making them cute outfits. Yes some days I look around and notice everyone is on a device of sorts, and have to laugh out loud, ok it’s time to get outside.I have a rule No phones at dinner time, or when we are DOING the family stuff, even if it’s just sitting down to watch a Movie together. When we are out to Socialize or visiting.That time is just too important. have had to turn off house phone just to get through dinner. If it’s really that important, they will call back or stop by. and Facebook is not going anywhere I tell myself. La sigh…..

  31. I laughed thinking that I am on my PHONE reading this. It is an obsession THAT a lot of people have. WHEN I am HOME alone and get bored I grab my phone. Maybe we can all learn from this and not use our phone as often.

  32. I really enjoyed this blog. I struggle every single day to not use my phone. The Struggle is very Real. I always sadly this month I’m going to be better but then I slip right back into the same habits. I want to so badly be less addicted to social media and have more of an addiction to my family. I am GOING TO Try very hard to be a better mom and wife and stay off my phone so much. And yes I used my phone to WRITING This since it is the only source of Internet we have at home 😯
    Thanks again for an awesome blog!

  33. Hi, bye.

  34. The smartphone struggle is REAL. I, too, am guilty. Thanks for your honesty! Is that why your battery is always running out? Lol it finally makes sense!

    1. No clue how “real” got CAPITALIZED. Seems appropriate anyeay.

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