Using your phone on a date?
How would you feel if the person you’re on a date with spent more time gazing at their phone instead of at you? Is it okay to use your phone at all whilst on a date?
A recent social media poll by Christian Connection found that 75% of people thought that being on your phone during the first date was bad manners. Whilst this is unsurprising, if we are completely honest, some of us would admit to doing this from time to time as well (8% of the respondents to the survey said that if their date was on the phone, chances are that they would be too!)
The truth is that, even though technology has made us more connected than ever, it seems to have unfortunately also led us to a place where we find it very difficult to disconnect and switch off, sometimes when we’re in the presence of friends, family and even a potential love interest! What is it about our phones that make us feel like we’re missing an arm if we’re not with them?
The phenomenon called ‘FOMO’, or ‘Fear of missing out’ is a real one and affects most of us in some way. We want to know what is going on at all times. We don’t want to be the last to find out that this person got married, or that person just had a baby (amongst other things).
There are some people that feel a need to constantly post whatever is going on in their lives, chasing after likes and comments. Whilst it may seem harmless at the time, being glued to your phone can stop you from being present in ‘the real world’.
The point of dating is to determine compatibility with a partner. If you’re constantly on your phone, what message are you sending? That they’re not interesting enough perhaps? That you’d rather be somewhere else? This does not leave a good first impression and you could end up missing out on a potential relationship.
If you are expecting an important call or message, explain this at the beginning of the date. Most people will understand if you need to check your phone for 2 seconds when a notification comes in.
So, what should you do if you’re on the receiving end- someone is on their phone the whole time you’re with them? What’s the best way to respond?
If they are using their phone for long periods of time now, when they have the most reason to try and impress you, then what is going to change moving forward? Their actions are showing you that you are not a priority.
You could say something like: “I’m sorry, is this not a good time for you? You seem to have something important to attend to.”
This acknowledges their behaviour, whilst also giving them the benefit of the doubt. It is possible that something urgent has come up, but if it turns out that they’re just checking messages, it gives you an opportunity to leave and a clear explanation as to why you are leaving.
So, remember, before you pick up your phone to update your status or text your friend about how well (or not) the date is going, think twice. Enjoy the moment. Be fully present. You just might land a second date.