Do Cell Phones Ruin Home Life?
New York – The first risk factor for a family’s psychological balance is the cell phone. This verdict, a bit “nebulous” or far-fetched (for those who see the mobile phone as a simple communication tool) is a peremptory statement of the American psychologist Debbie Mandel.
“Many of the problems that emerged in the sessions concern cell phone interference in domestic life: phone calls that arrive during the day or in the middle of the night interrupt family peace of mind”, continues Dr. Mandel.
A recent study, published in the Journal of Marriage and Family, shows that cell phones interfere with the lives of families, causing problems at home and at work.
Interviews conducted on married couples who work, many of them with children, show that the use of mobile phones in the family “leads to a decrease in satisfaction and an increase in stress”. “People feel they can’t turn it off or do without it,” says Noelle Chesley, a sociologist at the University of Wisconsin.
Although the mobile phone provides the illusion of maintaining contact with both the work environment and the family, in fact the realities are different, Debbie Mandel says again. During a group therapy session, for example, a mother declared that her cell phone allows her to always be in contact with her daughter while she is at school: “I don’t miss a thing about her”. “But yes”, remarked the psychologist “because in reality the telephone is her real contact, not the children”, underlining that in the episodes of family life in which the woman found herself physically with her children, she spent the whole time on the phone, thus being present only with the body, but not with one’s emotions. This would give the children a feeling of absence.
Interesting psycho-sociological food for thought, even if in truth all this reflects, in many cases, an individual condition of need to find an outlet to a different problem.