It’s so hard trying to talk to someone, who doesn’t take their eyes off the phone. You know they aren’t really listening and simply making noises while swiping the screen. It leaves you feeling annoyed, ignored and unimportant.
Now imagine that feeling when you are trying to cuddle up to your partner in bed or on the sofa. If your partner is likely to put the phone down or continue scrolling. Are you the one who prefers time with your phone, rather than your partner?
Think about the past week, did you spend more time face to face with your phone, than getting intimate ? If you answered yes, then you are not alone. Almost 65% of people in the UK check their phone before they go to sleep, and 45% wake up at night to check their devices. Furthermore, over half of married people spend time on their phones in bed, rather than spending that time with their partner. Phones and devices in the bedroom are taking its toll on relationships and causing intimacy problems.
Is intimacy suffering?
Peope are having less sex than they used to. The top causes that people tell me about for their relationship problems are lack of emotional intimacy, followed by little or poor communication between partners. So what is getting in the way?
Talking to clients a common issue stopping them becoming intimate is technology and devices such as tablets, phones and laptops. Couples are laid in bed, back to back, staring at devices and falling asleep without any connection to their partner. Lack of connection at bedtime, combined with tiredness, stress and lack of time are stopping people from wanting sex, or even physcial contact with a partner.
Sex is more than just intercourse. It includes kissing, touching, skin to skin contact, talking and connection. Most people know that their phone is making them miss out on quaity time, and that their sex life is suffering but the lure of the screen is too strong. In fact, some use staring ta the phone as an avoidance tool, to signal that they are not in the mood more any sexual advances.
So, is your phone addiction threatening your relationship?
Is Phubbing killing your relationship?
Ignoring your partner for your phone is called phubbing– ‘phone snubbing’. A person who phubs their partnership is sending a message that what is happening on the device is more important and worthy than they are. It denies your partner a chance for connection, until eventually they stop trying to get your attention. They give up and emotional distance is created.
If you want to maintain that connection with your partner, you need to find ways to overcome your device habits. If not your scrolling into an intimacy crisis.
Understanding The Four Elements Of Intimacy
As well as connecting between the sheets, there are other ways that intimacy can manifest. Here are the four main aspects of intimacy. It can help to ensure you nourish each element and understand which, if any, that you are lacking.
This aspect focuses on sharing thoughts, ideas and having discussions about the things you care about. This could be having a particular song that reminds you both of your relationship; it may be discussing your favourite books, films, or sharing aspirations such as traveling or supporting a charity.
This focuses on being able to share your innermost thoughts – this is about feeling comfortable enough to cry with, sharing both joy and pain and supporting each other. Emotional intimacy also focuses on honesty and trust; you need to be honest with yourself as well as your partner. Otherwise, it can lead to disconnection.
Also known as spiritual intimacy, this focuses on really being in the moment with your partner and experiencing something awe-inspiring or something that brings you closer together. This could be as simple as sharing a walk in nature, or watching a movie. It’s all about creating experiences and memories with your partner.
This doesn’t have to be sex, but is any form of affection such as hugging, kissing, snuggling up together. So often, we can end up sending more kisses via text messages than we give in real-life. This can show that physical intimacy can be lacking.
How To Reignite Intimacy In Your Relationship
Communicate, Communicate, Communicate
Offer solutions to the phone issue, rather than attacks. Reframe ‘put the phone away. I’m talking to you `, into a more solution focused phrase such as ‘lets both out of phones away at 9pm’, which provides a positive choice. Alternatively, if you are the one who is spending too much time on a device, listen to your partner and don’t be defensive. Acknowledge how they say it makes them feel ‘i understand that is is making you upset’
Agree Phone Free Time.
Set the do disturb time on your phones to the same time. Then when that time comes, put your phones out of sight so they aren’t going to distract you. Here you are sending a clear message to your partner that you are important to them. It also allows space to be open to the idea of intimacy or just watch Netflix while cuddling.
Ask Your Partner How They Are Feeling
Often a device addiction is an avoidance or mask for another issue. They might say they use it to unwind, relax or take their mind off things. Maybe they are feeling stressed at work, or have unwanted feelings that they do not want to face. Make sure your partner knows you are there for them, and they can share things with you. Actively listen to what they say, be supportive and open.
Getting More Support
If you are still not sure how to approach your intimacy problem or break the pattern of bad habits hypnotherapy can really help. It can restore intimacy, and address any personal issues that you may be struggling with. Together we can explore your issues, find the underlying causes and provide tools to help you and your partner become intimate and connected again.
Find out more about how I can help by booking your first free consultation by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org