So your husband is addicted to his phone and this behavior of his is making you feel ignored as it is sucking up the quality time in your marriage?
You want to have his attention and spend some one to one time with him but he is never fully free from social media and the virtual world on his phone. You are not alone, I have personally heard this complaint from dozens of women.
Download free cheat sheet to respond effectively and help your husband get rid of his phone addiction.
How to Respond to Your Husband’s Phone Addiction
A few steps can not only let you help your husband in limiting the use of his phone but also give you quality time as a couple. Let’s see what we can do about it
1. Remember That Today’s Phones Are Addicting
Before you go into an all-out fight mode against your husband because of the addiction of his phone, remember that today’s high tech smartphones are highly addictive. They are designed in a way to keep their audience glued to the screens.
You yourself might have experienced that while doing an important task you check social media with an intention of just checking a post or two and before you know you are lost in the world of social media.
So remember that your husband is not intentionally ignoring you to his phone rather he is helpless in front of this addiction machine.
2. Remind Yourself That Men & Women are Different By Default
We know that men and women are different by default. Something might be a matter of life or death for a woman but it might be totally unimportant for a man, and it’s natural.
Giving attention to your spouse in terms of talking and listening is second nature to women but most men are totally naïve in this department.
Due to these differences, men are women are considered to belong to different planets.
John Gray has highlighted these differences in his book “Men are from Mars and Women are from Venus”, which is a must read for every couple.
So, your husband might not be actually addicted to his phone he might just be in his MAN CAVE, as they say.
3. Communicate Your Needs & Desires Effectively
Communicating your need is difficult in a love relationship like marriage. As both husband and wife want and expect that their partner should know their need by themselves and then take an appropriate course of action to fulfill that need.
By the way, who likes asking for an emotional need to be fulfilled? Nobody.
So most probably you won’t like the idea of communicating your desires and needs regarding your husband’s phone use to him but trust me you have to talk to him and it will work hopefully.
Once you understand that there is no malice in the intention of your husband, communicating your point of view will become easier and effective.
The following course of action will help you in effectively communicating your needs and desires.
- Do not assume anything like the assumption that your husband knows or should know your needs and feelings.
- Find an appropriate time and tell him that you feel ignored due to his addiction to his phone.
- While communicating use “I feel” statements instead of “You” statements. For example: Instead of saying “You are addicted to your phone and it’s ruining our relationship.” Try saying “I feel ignored and unimportant when you spend a lot of time on your phone.” By using the “I feel” statement you are taking the responsibility of your own feelings and your husband will also not go to a defensive mode which he would have gone if you had used a “you” statement.
- Convey your message with respect and kindness
4. Make an Agreement For limiting Use of Phone & Other Devices
By mutual consent set an appropriate boundary for using phones and other devices. Find a window of time where both you and your husband will put the phones and other devices away and give quality one to one time to each other.
5. Work On Your Own Life Independent Of Being a Wife or Mother
At times women lose themselves in marriage and motherhood. They do not have a life outside their marriage or motherhood so they become overly dependent on their husbands or kids for their sense of purpose and worth.
In order to have a life outside your marriage, you may try the following options.
- Give time to yourself as a woman. Have a life other than being a wife or mother.
- Have some girlfriends to have deep conversations
- Start a hobby.
- Spend some time on personal grooming.
- Pursue one of your own dreams.
- Learn something new.
- Set personal goals and work towards achieving them.
Once you will start focusing your own life you will become more groomed and polished as a person, your husband will be forced to pay attention to you instead of sticking with his phone.
Tips To Help Your Husband Ditch His Phone Addiction
You cannot help your husband in getting rid of his phone addiction unless he accepts that there is an issue. By effectively communicating your point of view your husband is more likely to accepts the problem. After he accepts and is willing to change, you may help him with the following tips.
1. Monitoring Phone Usage
When people are addicted to their phones they do not realize how much time they are actually spending
There are apps available to monitor phone usage. Your husband may use apps like Breakfree,
2. Deleting Social Media Apps From Phone
If your husband is on social media for entertainment purposes only then he may delete social media apps from his phone. He can use social media on a laptop or desktop. This will minimize his phone usage tremendously. The point is not to leave social media altogether but make it a bit less accessible.
3. Changing Phone Screen To Black and White
Our phones are visually appealing. The more visually appealing something is the more addicting it would be. Changing the screens of your phones to black and white has helped many people minimize their phone addiction. Doing the same can help
4. Creating Tiny Habits to Limit Phone Usage
A Stanford behavior scientist BJ Fogg invented the method of tiny habits. This method is based on the fact that big change is difficult but you can achieve the change with many tiny steps.
I highly recommend watching this famous TED talk with your husband to find a way out from phone addiction with tiny habits
5. Starting an Activity To Replace The Habit of Using Phone
Your husband may start an activity to replace his habit of using phone. He might try doing something he enjoyed in his childhood or something he always wanted to do. He may learn a new skill.
Even you can join him in this activity. Both of you will stay away from your phones, spend quality time with each other, and learn something new- A win-win for everybody
If your husband’s phone addiction is severe and he is helpless despite trying these DIY methods, then he may opt for therapy. At psychguides.com there is a very good resource for therapy options for phone addiction, you may check those.
In short, if your husband is addicted to his phone and you feel ignored because of his addiction, you need to devise a plan and act upon it intelligently and you will be successful by all means.