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By Chandrama Anderson

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About this blog: About this blog: I am a LMFT specializing in couples counseling and grief and have lived in Silicon Valley since 1969. I'm the president of Connect2 Marriage Counseling. I worked in high-tech at Apple, Stanford University, and in ...  (More)

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Couples: Drop Your Keyboard!

Uploaded: Aug 10, 2018
Talking with your partner and being understood may be challenging enough without adding in the complexities of technology. Body language accounts for 70% or more of our communication. Consider eye contact, breathing, and your “felt sense” of what’s going on between you, and begin to imagine what can go wrong in your efforts to talk, listen, and be understood when you’re using email, text, and/or IM.

I worked in high-tech for 15 years; the lure of technology is clear to me. The power of devices, the Internet, and the possibilities of immediate connection and community hold tremendous appeal.

I have heard so many stories of text interactions between couples that have gone awry -- meaning that they escalate quickly into fights, with both people feeling hurt and misunderstood. BTW, when is a text "conversation" done?

I find myself sitting in my therapist chair wondering, "Why were they they having this conversation by text and not in person, or at least by phone where they can hear each others' voices?"

Conversely, we may share more than we want or would be comfortable sharing if we were in person. Another thing to consider: do you really want a written record that might end up forwarded, posted in a public forum, or otherwise used in ways you don’t or can’t anticipate?

It’s also true that face-to-face conversations may feel revealing or vulnerable -- and with your partner, I actually hope that is true for you, as that is part of the definition of intimacy.

Since you want to be loved for who you are, you have to show up as who you are. Otherwise, who does your partner love?

So put down your devices, hold your partner’s hand, make eye contact, and say “Hi.”

Comments

 +   2 people like this
Posted by Native to the BAY, a resident of Old Palo Alto,
on Aug 16, 2018 at 12:53 pm

Native to the BAY is a registered user.

I know what you are saying. I support WiFi Free zones for couples and all. I am so tired of our society being distracted by these devices, feeding at the endless trough called the Internet. It's time to turn off, tune in, try harder.


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