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Wife who is phone obsessed


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Hello

so my wife used to really want to push education for our children. But she seems so obsessed with her phone/Instagram. I’ve tried talking to her about it but she just gets really defensive when I bring it a conversation. I watched her one night and all she was doing was swiping up and peoples Instagram posts and reading comments people had posted for a whole 3 hours. All our children see is her on her phone. She works part time but struggles to do anything with them if I’m not there. Otherwise she’ll just put the television on and sit them in front of it. Yet I work full time and I’m expecting to take the kids on treks and to the beach alone. 
 

can someone shed light on this please 

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Have you talked with her about your parenting together and what you want for your kids? What does going on treks or to the beach have to do with their education? Are their grades slipping? How are your finances and how is the intimacy in your relationship? 

Edited by Rose Mosse
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Sorry to hear this. I can relate somewhat as a family member of mine is often on their phone, ignoring others when on it. It's annoying as heck.


According to Healthline

Quote

 

research revealed that several personality traits and conditions have been associated with problematic cell phone use.

These personality traits include:

low self-esteem

low impulse control

anxiety

depression

being highly extroverted

 

 

Quote

Researchers believe that people who compulsively use cell phones may be trying to avoid issues in their lives that feel too difficult or complicated to resolve.

So, one of the first things to consider is whether there’s something deeper bothering you. Resolving the underlying issue could be the key to reducing your anxiety.

 

Is she going through anything?

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Social media can be really addicting.

It's easy to fall into the trap of seeing the world through an app. 

It doesn't have to be necessarily anything to do with cheating, in fact Instagram is not really known for that sort of thing, it's more news, media, stories, pictures etc.

But if she is escaping into this app that much, that it's affecting her time with her children, and being productive, or finding time for you, her husband, then yes, it's a problem.

But it's not an easy one to solve.

She would have to first agree with you that it's a problem, and that might be a tough go.

If she's slightly addicted, she won't want to let it go and stop looking on her phone.

She will probably become defensive, or feeling like you're overexaggerating.

But if there is a way for you to see eye to eye, it's possible she could be open to putting her phone down more, or even speaking to a counselor if she is possibly feeling depressed, lonely, unhappy.

(Sometimes people escape into the internet if they are feeling those things).

Do your best to talk with her about it, but try not to be accusatory, angry, or belittling when you bring it up.

It will only put her on the defense and there is no way you will be able to have an open conversation like that.

Gently ask her if anything is bothering her. Then let her know you're concerned because she seems to be on her phone more lately.

It's a very touchy subject to brooch, so try to do it with kindness and care.

But it is definitely something to bring up, talk about and hopefully work through together.

It's a sad sign of the times, but with the availability of the mobiles and apps now a days, it's easy for people to lose sight of what and who's in front of them because their head is down staring at their phone.

Good luck, I hope you manage to work this issue out with her.

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1 hour ago, Rose Mosse said:

Have you talked with her about your parenting together and what you want for your kids? What does going on treks or to the beach have to do with their education? Are their grades slipping? How are your finances and how is the intimacy in your relationship? 

It has nothing to do with education; the point I’m making is she struggles to even spend time with them. Grades are not at the standard they should be- they are privately educated and she is relying on that to get them through.. there is no intimacy in our marriage- there hasn’t been for a while 

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6 hours ago, CityMan35 said:

so my wife used to really want to push education for our children. . She works part time but struggles to do anything with them if I’m not there. Otherwise she’ll just put the television on and sit them in front of it. 

How long have you been married? How old are the children? 

How is your marriage? Does she like being a part time SAHM? 

What do you mean by "used to push education"? Is she stuck homeschooling the children?

She seems depressed bored lonely and checked out.

Getting lost in her phone, social media and TV seems like someone who's checked out and disconnected.

The screen use is a symptom not just the main problem. Has she tried telling you what's really bothering her?

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5 hours ago, CityMan35 said:

there is no intimacy in our marriage- there hasn’t been for a while

So there is a lot more going on here than her being on her phone all the time. 

Why aren't you intimate anymore? How long has it been dead? 

She sounds bored or checked out, and is distracting herself with her phone. But I would wager that her phone isn't the problem itself - it's a symptom of bigger issues. 

Edited by MissCanuck
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I'm not addicted to my phone.  Early on in the pandemic I realized that looking at social media was stressing me too much because of all the covid info/misinformation, politics, protests, sigh.  I already was not looking at my phone in the hour before bed -it was turned off - we'd have the TV on but I'd mostly read my book.  What I did was start to turn off my phone earlier and earlier plus read more books.  We have a 13 year old and I think my being an avid reader all of his life -him seeing me read books -and the occasional magazine - makes a good impression on him plus if I am reading a book (which I did often on a playground bench) I can tell he feels like I'm not off in my own little world -I'm not shutting him out, intense on a screen. 

Would your wife be open to this sort of suggestion - do you read books for example? Do your kids - could you have some boundaries where you both agree to shut off your phones for an extra few hours and read/listen to music (my husband will put on jazz or sometimes classical music) - even if your kids are on screens they will see both of you not on screens.  It helps.  Obviously I am not addicted but I am saying I can relate to wanting to escape behind a phone screen and can relate to the time suck it can be. Maybe if she sees you "sacrificing" phone time she will too?

Is she willing to go to the beach with you/to outings, etc?

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The best way to change someone else's behavior is to change your own. Perhaps if your interaction with her improves, she'll want to engage in activities other than her phone.

Why not get a book about how to reestablish an emotional connection with your wife? Be transparent with her that you would like to improve your marriage, and are reading up on how to do this. And then tell her what the book suggests to reignite the spark you, I'm assuming, once had.

Nobody can argue with "I" statements versus "you never" statements, i.e. "I'd love for us to go to the beach tomorrow as a family." Versus, "You never want to do stuff as a family anymore."

Try to have a once a month date day or night with her and try to do things out of the norm. Be creative. Ask her to go to a couples store to pick out new items for intimacy in the bedroom. Ask if she wants a back rub or foot rub even when you don't want intimacy, just to be nice. She should respond positively and start reciprocating.

If none of that works, have a serious conversation that you don't want to live the rest of your life like this and that you'd like to go to couples counseling. If she refuses, show her the seriousness of the matter by letting her know you'll be going to see a therapist by yourself. Good luck and keep us updated.

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9 hours ago, CityMan35 said:

It has nothing to do with education; the point I’m making is she struggles to even spend time with them. Grades are not at the standard they should be- they are privately educated and she is relying on that to get them through.. there is no intimacy in our marriage- there hasn’t been for a while 

Have you posted about this before? In any case Andrina has a few good suggestions. You appear to criticize her quite a lot and she resents you. I’m not saying whether any of it is warranted or justified as there are few details and I’m not passing judgment on that.

Your wife doesn’t seem interested in the marriage or what you have to say so when that happens you’ll have to ask yourself why and second, whether you can live with that in your relationship any longer. 

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