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‘Phubbing’ Is Hurting Our Children. Here’s What It Is

Whether you want to admit it or not, you’ve phubbed someone. In fact, you could be doing it right now as you read this post.

Well, I am here to tell you that ‘Phubbing’ Your Children Is Hurting Your Relationship With Them, Here’s What It Is.

What is Phubbing?

Phubbing is a real world in the English dictionary that means to snub someone in favor of your mobile phone. It basically means you ignore the person next to you and instead, pay attention to your phone instead.

Where Does Phubbing Come From?

Phubbing comes from the splicing together of the words phone and snubbing.

It was originally created in May 2012 when Australia’s Macquarie Dictionary and the McCann advertising agency assembled a group of language experts to name a phenomenon common in the era of the smartphone.

They dubbed the phenomenon phubbing, and defined it as “the act of snubbing someone in a social setting by looking at your phone instead of paying attention.”

How does it affect the relationship with your kids?

Aside from our kids feeling like we are uninterested in what they have to say, it can cause all sorts of emotions and physiological effects.

In fact, in a recent study published in the Journal of Adolescence found that children who felt ignored by their parents were more likely to report depressive symptoms than those who had their parents’ undivided attention.

The researchers found that “parental phubbing was associated with students’ depression in late childhood and adolescence through two paths”.

They added: “The present study highlights the need to establish family norms regulating mobile phone use to reduce phubbing.

“The results of the mediation tests revealed that parental phubbing has both direct and indirect effects on their children’s depression. For the direct path, parental phubbing was positively associated with the students’ depression.”

Not only are we doing this to our children, we are teaching them to do it to others.

Remember the old saying, “monkey see, monkey do”? Yeah that is what is happening here.

And it’s not only effecting our kids, it is hurting marriages and adult relationships too.

In a separate poll, 1/3 of people in relationships in the UK said they have been phubbed, and it’s worse among the young, with 57% of people aged 25-34 saying it affects their love lives.

So, what can you do?

Well, you can stop phubbing.

Put down your phone (or any electronic device for that matter) and take the time to listen to your kids. Be there for them and give them your undivided attention.

Experts recommend creating and following strict technology rules in your house, such as putting your phone away while eating dinner.

I plan to stop phubbing once and for all in my house. Trust me, that text, phone call or email can wait. Our children are more important.