In Relationships with our Phones: Our Emotional Attachment to Gadgets & Devices
10:48PM Feb 13, 2020
Alright, well welcome everybody. We'll go ahead and get started. My name is Krista Applequist. And I teach speech here. And with Valentine's Day being tomorrow, I thought I'd like to have a talk with all of you about our relationship with our phones. And that brings us to today's panel. It's in a relationship with your phones, our emotional attachment to our gadgets and devices. And what I have here is some clinical psychologists, some counselors and some psychology professors who are going to talk to you about how your phone is impacting you psychologically, and emotionally. Okay, so during the panel, ironically, make sure your phones are put away and you're fully present for this discussion. I will introduce the panelists and then we'll get right to it and I do want you to know that I am trying to save about 10 minutes at the end for questions. So if you have a question or just something you'd like to comment on or a personal anecdote you'd like to share, please jot it down during the panel and or try to remember it and then we will pass the microphone around. And let you all participate to at the end. Alright, so to get started, I will introduce the panelists we have. We have Teresa Hannon and she is a full time counseling associate professor and a licensed clinical psychologist. We have John DiGangi. He's an addictions counselor. And, and we have Nick Shizas, a professor of psychology, and Anna Rogers, a full time counselor and assistant professor in psychology. Okay, so to get started, we are going to just let Theresa hand and open it up for us.
Good afternoon. How are y'all doing? I can't see you. So I'm going to stand up because we're talking about connection, right? We're talking about social connection. So I kind of I titled My sections navigating social media, the good, the bad, and the ugly. Can you all think of the good and the bad, and the ugly of social media, maybe we'll have some time to talk about at the end. And so research is long determined. So we are social animals. Humans are social animals, we, we thrive on connection we, we want connection, right? Right. If you don't see somebody for a few days, you want to talk to someone, right? Somebody that you care about, we want to feel connected. We want to feel a sense of belonging. And we know that people have good social networks are things are the happiest people, they seem to thrive better, they actually seem to live longer, right? So this is all good in how social media can't connect us to other people. So has anybody found somebody on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, blah, blah, blah, that they may be lost touch with? Okay, yeah, I think that's happened a lot. It's happened to me, I'm an old fart. So like, you know, when all of us you lot all of us over to get on Facebook, everybody, you know, we were able to find a lot of people. And so those are some really good connection. Finding old friends connecting with people, having Facebook groups having different groups so that you can stay connected if there's something important going on. But we also know that heavily social media, intensely people who really connect with their phones on a consistent regular almost all the time basis, tend to have higher levels of depression, anxiety, even some social awkwardness, and even like suicide ideation and action. So can you see why that might happen? Can you see why that happens? Because there is so much going on in social media that is without thought about how that might affect others. Okay, has anybody seen a picture that threw you in a tailspin? I mean, let's just be Yeah, okay. Let's just be Okay, where are you maybe felt left out, you maybe didn't know that this person was with this person. Yeah, it really, really can throw us in a tailspin. And then that sense of belonging just goes out the window. Right? We can redefine our relationship based on our social media, which I don't think is necessarily fair, agreed. relationship is really when we are in one I'm What? Social media can be more of an illusion.
I wondered, I'd like why, why do we do this, right. And I, as a counselor here in our counseling department, I hear from students all the time about, well, they said this, and they did this and I saw this picture. And I said, Well, what if you block that and that that doesn't even occur to us and it seemed for me too, it doesn't occur to us. So what keeps us going back so So there is a kind of a theory and I'm sure a lot of you have heard of it FOMO fear of missing out, okay? Like, if I don't check, maybe a party is happening. Maybe somebody's saying something about me, maybe I'm missing a picture. And then when I do try to connect, I'm out of the loop. Okay. So I guess, I guess my point is, is if you tend to live in this FOMO life in this always fear of missing out, eventually, that's going to get you you're going to be that person that feels less satisfied with your life. Okay. And so I just want you to kind of consider when you're using social media, how this is affecting you. Like how does that, you know, like, we've had no negative reactions, we've had positive reactions as well. Okay. But if every time you go and you look on social media, whatever kind you're you're getting down You're getting upset, right? Then maybe finding a way to balance it a little bit. Maybe, you know, I mean, I have two black friends, but maybe the ones that are maybe the most toxic to your well being maybe that's, you know, get them off your feet for a while. Okay, we have control, we just don't always feel like we have control because it just automatically comes on to our feeds.
And I think what I would be wanting you to ask is
besides what the internal What are your you know, what's coming on for you is, are you gauging your sense of belonging based on likes, based on number of friends, based on who's liking your stuff? basin and who's even messaging you? And if that is if that is a case and that's a little bit bigger issue that obviously needs to be addressed. We don't want your self esteem to be attached to social media, it can be helpful as well. We do know that some, some sense of connection social media can also alleviate some level depression. So we don't want to say no social media, it's about discernment. It's about balance. Does that make sense? Can you can you guys see, can you try doing that you're feeling upset.
Okay, so I'll hand it back to Krista. I just have a question for the audience. Have you ever posted a picture or an anecdote or a funny meme? And check back later to see how many people liked it? And sort of got that selfie? And do you ever do the opposite? Do you feel bad? On behalf of everyone age 35 and older, so much older than you, I would just like to formally apologize for ruining Facebook. So we did get in there and take it over. It's all pictures of our kids and whatnot. about that. Some of my students that I'm really close to on the speech team, I marvel at how hard it is for people in your generation to go through a breakup when when I went through a breakup, it was, Hey, I'm going to cut up that Polaroid and now it's destroyed forever. But you it's just constant reminders. And here they are, and they look so good, or is that a filter? And what am I missing out on? And now I can see their location. And now I'm having other thoughts and yeah, so it can be just, it's, I can see how it adds tragedy, you know, especially with the with the FOMO. Raise your hand if you've heard of FOMO before the fear of missing out and you give yourself a complex. Okay. All right. So we are going to move on actually to Mitch Baker, who is not here today, because he's not feeling well. But Anna Rogers is going to cover some of his notes and things that he wanted to bring up. Guys, thank you. For those of you lucky enough to have Mitch Baker as your professor.
I'm honored to speak on His behalf and I'm not going to crush it like he would have but he really wanted to talk about the different types of attachment. And there's one specific type of attachment that can be particularly vulnerable to some of the dangers of having these close. relationships with our with our devices. And at the end of the panel, I'm going to become me again and talk about some of the positive things that I've experienced from being connected to my device. So I'm just going to pull up the four types of attachment. Okay. I'm a visual learner. So it always helps to have a picture while you're listening to someone drone on about attachment theory. So there's the secure attachment, which is where somebody feels comfortable in a warm and loving relationship. They depend on other people and they allow others to depend on them. They accept a need for someone to be independent of them a separateness autonomy, it's okay if you're away from me, you can have an identity separate from mine. I have security in that I manage and regulate my emotions. Well if I have this type of attachment theory Next is the anxious attachment theory. People in this category tend to fall victim to feeling insecure most of the time. And we're talking about friendships, not just romantic relationships. Their device can provide a medium for being constantly worried and bring up sense of abandonment or rejection. They tend to need ongoing validation and reassurance. So being left on read, not being liked, not having someone read your story. Those are all things that really affect people who fall into this attachment theory differently than the other types. They can be highly emotional and seen as pot stirs. So people who get on and make negative comments can often fall under the anxious category because truly it's a need to feel relevant. Not necessarily that they're a nasty person. There's the avoidant type of attachment. These individuals will keep you at an arm's length. They equate intimacy with losing their freedom. So if I become close to you if I'm engaging in several back and forth texts messages, if I'm reading your stories if I'm posting a lot, that will damper my freedom, it tempers my ability to do what I want. They can appear in control and are great in a crisis situation because they they have a very narrow range of emotion so they can disassociate from things fairly easily, which can be a good thing and a bad thing. Finally, there's the fearful type of attachment. These individuals tend to have unresolved issues from the past or traumas that haven't been investigated with a helping professional or resolved. They tend to be distant in order to avoid pain. They can also lack empathy. So those individuals may not perceive when when they're behaving on social media or by using text messaging or anything like this, they don't perceive the other person's feelings accurately. They experience it from a place of wanting to avoid pain and trauma again. So studies from the Journal of computers and human behavior, which is an actual journal, I was surprised at that, which I learned as I was preparing for this panel. The higher the score on having this anxious type of attachment, the higher the tendency to show attachment like features regarding their cell phone. So if you have this in life, you tend to have higher attachment to a device and they even measured all of the attachment types did not fair well in terms of if your phone is 20 feet away from you 50 feet away from you, the further the device was away. The higher the anxiety for all of these types, but it was highest for the anxious category. future research will be very interesting. They are looking at using neuro imaging to see if our attachment to mobile phones will be mirroring romantic relationships in our attachments that we we create an infancy. So that will be really interesting. I look forward to that.
And those results. So that's that's all I have to say on attachment theory. Thank you, Anna. But that was actually Mitch Baker's notes on attachment theory. I have a no cell phones in class rule. And some of my students look at me like, Oh, you gotta be kidding me. And I'm like, No, you need to take it out of your hand before before the skin on your hand kind of grows over the actual phone. You know, it can be so speaking of this, and you and your phones and those of you who couldn't even resist looking at it during this panel, I'm going to have you talk to an addictions counselor now. JOHN de gonji.
Good afternoon, it feels like morning, but Good afternoon. Good to see all of you. Yes. My background for over 40 years has been in the area of addictions. And I think when most people think about addictions, you start thinking about alcohol. Oh, sorry, you start thinking about alcohol and drugs, which is true, that's a major problem in our society. But people can become addicted to virtually any behavior that he or she finds pleasurable. And obviously, we know that lots and lots and lots of people millions of not billions of people around the planet, find the use of cell phones and computers and GPS systems, and Siri and Alexa, etc, etc. as pleasurable things. And so what switches the process or what switches a situation from someone enjoying something To now something becoming addicted person becoming addicted to that particular behavior. If I can spend a couple minutes or with you going through some criteria is how do we determine is someone dependent or addicted to something? And here they are tolerance. What is tolerance when the person started out doing something, and then they got pleasure from it, but then they were still doing it so often that that amount of activity was insufficient to give them the pleasure they were looking for. And so they just start upping it and upping it and upping it. So now they need to do more and more and more of whatever it is not to feel better and better and better just to feel as good as they felt from the very beginning. than the counterparts that is withdraw is when you take it away when you discontinue the behavior, you have all kinds of serious problems, all kinds of pain, physical pain, spiritual pain, psychological pain, emotional pain, and relationship pain, and so on like that. So when you're in pain, we look for pain relief until we're going to move back to the use again. So it gets to be kind of a vicious circle, a catch 22 that I'm going to keep on doing the very thing that caused this problem to begin with, which is only making the problem worse. I've used the example over the years. It's like you're really thirsty. And there's a glass of salt water in front of you. And so you could take this salt water because it's wet. But of course, because it's full salt, it doesn't quench your thirst, and salty hydrated. So now we're only more thirsty than we were before we even even did that continued use of the behavior or engagement and behavior in spite of negative comments. cuentas so we can go through a long list of things that doctors are talking more and more about, for example, that the use of cell phones and use of computers are causing us all kinds of problems in various areas of our physical and psychological lives. Using in dangerous situations, this is one of the biggest things to texting when people are driving. We are so connected to our phones, we can even drive a distance and put the phone down. I have seen people even in parking lots go going like this you know with one hand and their phone is sort of cracked in their neck and they're, you know, bumping into cars and blocking the, the you know, roadway for everybody else. I'm thinking to myself, could you tell a person up call you back in 15 seconds and life and let me be be kind of be done with this. The research shows that Instead of texting, we all know about drunk driving and now with marijuana being legal, we have this concern too. Okay? So, but the research is comparing texting of driving along compared to drunk driving, texting and driving is actually more dangerous. Don't get confused. We're not saying therefore, drinking and driving is not dangerous. But texting and driving is more dangerous than drinking and driving. Okay, but people can put put their phones down, they can't put their phones down, even when they're doing something that is so dangerous to them, and many, many innocent people.
Then we have cravings what's a craving is like when you just have this unbelievable physical and psychological poll for the activity. research is showing that people can call asleep before they look at their phone. They wake up in the middle of night to look at Phone, they take your phone into the bathroom with them. And this one wants to tap or for me, one out of every 10 people are using your phone while they're having sex. Okay, I mean like, come on. All
right. I mean, give me a break here is that call?
Yeah, right. Exactly, exactly.
Another key sign is interfering in key areas of your life. We know that human relationships I have seen people I've heard people complain about this, like right here, okay, we're, you know, having a good time. I think this is the afternoon. And it would be like, instead of me talking to, you know, my, you know, my friends and my students and you know, people here at the school, I want to text you, you're right here, I'm texting you while you're right here, or I'm reading things on my phone instead of paying attention. You, I guess there's this turn by using your mind called fobbing Is that the right way, loving that that relationships are, are breaking up, because people are saying you're not paying enough attention to me, you're paying more attention to your phone, or your your device. So I am more into my phone than I am into the human beings that are around me. Then let's see, oh, neglect of other functions that kind of tied on the app. That's another symptom. And much time spent using and much time spent getting, trying to get the thing at the personal one. So like, for example, a person who was heroin addicted, will spend a tremendous amount of time doing all day activities trying to get their next hit of heroin. Well, this kind of struck me is like when they say there's a new iPhone out.
I wouldn't stand in line for two days to get a new iPhone, but apparently thousands and thousands of people are willing to do that. Okay, which is another sign. Okay, so our phones bad or computers bands are live these devices band know. And he's going to talk about some very dramatic examples of how these have been very, very helpful. I find them helpful in some ways too. But there is this wonderful law called the law of unintended consequences in life where nothing is going to be free. Everything that we do, there's a price to be paid for that to question starts to become, am I in control of my life and is this saying this object is substance, whatever, you know, there for me to use it or has it now becomes Sort of like a boa constrictor that has slowly, slowly slowly woven itself around me until it has me and then it tightens up. And then I am now a slave to to it. Look at what these things have done to us. We're still debating the last presidential election because of this. The caucuses in Iowa were just a disaster because of this new, you know, app that was put on the phones, there's still talk at the next presidential election is going to be up for grabs because of this. So your phones know where you're at all the time. They know what you're doing. They know what you're buying, they know who you're talking to. They just have this ongoing record. I like my privacy. I like my freedom. These things are taking these things away from us. I think I have one more minutes are really quickly. Let me just give up. A couple more things to some negative things, as I mentioned, texting with driving, interfering with sleep adversely affecting friendships and relationships, reducing true social contact. All one thing too is another thing I think is really big is the American Society of Pediatrics, physicians, you know, which is a premier organization, arguably, in the world that studies the well being of infants. They say, anybody under two years of age should have zero face time, FaceTime, on a computer or on a phone. But what we're seeing more and more is parents using these things, sort of as at least temporary caretakers like here. And if you ever saw a small child, the gaze that they have, you cannot break their gaze you cannot get their attention. It is lighting a pleasure. In the brain in a way that is sort of re rewiring the brain. This is not a good thing for the long term for our culture and our society. So, one real quick thing, they did a study a couple years ago, it took 1000 College sophomores Okay, and said, we'll take your phone away for just 24 hours. If you can last 24 hours, find it anytime that you cannot go without his phone for 24 hours, let us know we'll give it back to you. Almost 80% of them could not last 24 hours could not go one day without their phone.
Great. Thanks for your time and attention.
JOHN, and to sum up, you know you're addicted. If you start experiencing tolerance, you need more and more and more of whatever it is and withdraw and cravings when you make yourself go without it. I've had students tell me that they've deleted an app or stopped subscribing to a page or blocked people because they just felt like it was taking up all their time and they were getting addicted to it. Raise your hand if you've ever had to do Did you ever cut yourself off of some kind of social media or something? Or maybe I know it with the apple phones, you can set time limits. I've got little reminders that come up. Like Krista, you have to stop arguing with your relatives on Facebook about political issues, because you've been doing it for an hour and 20 minutes now. You have a kid go, you know, like, yeah, I have that little reminder that I can find that helpful, too. Alright, so now we're going to move on to our professor of psychology. Nick. She's us.
Thanks for inviting me to be on the panel. It's always nice to talk about relationships before Valentine's Day, right? It is. I teach you but I teach one of the classes that I teach at this college is human sexuality. And so I thought it would be appropriate to share some information about how technology influences Our relationships a little bit about what john talked about as well, right? And then I was kind of looking at some apps that could help us in our relationships. Actually, I found an app about fertility I found an app about you know, when to have safe sex and all that kind of stuff, which was kind of cool. And then I read a little bit about Tinder. I mean, it's kind of cool. But it's kind of scary too. I found some you know, dangerous things I'm kind of afraid to tell you about
but but but I think I might if I have enough time, so
we have time now. Okay.
I just made time Yeah. Ronnie.
Can technology harm our relationships right so
look, it's nice to send a quick text right? When I'm thinking about my partner. It's nice to like send a quick text Hey, I'm thinking about you today right sending a quick I love you like those are ways that we can keep connected right? And that kind of thing. You know some people even use it of course you know to send you know flirtatious things sexually explicit material. You know, this Certainly dangerous to that. But there's ways to stay connected, I guess, right? So personally, of course, it's made my life easier in a lot of different ways, right helps me with emergencies. I can communicate with my wife really quickly when I'm at the store. And I say, Okay, I think I got everything I need. And I Can I shoot a quick call and say, is there anything else we need from Trader Joe's? You know, or something like that? And she'll say, yeah, you know, you know, and so I don't have to make two trips. So it has made my life easier. And it's made your life easier in a lot of ways to have you guys ever been into like an emergency like car accident. Your car stalled, right? I mean, before telephones. I mean, they were crazy expensive, right. And so you'd have to wait for tow trucks. I mean, so I don't think I could sit here and say that technology hasn't been helpful. It has been helpful. Here's where the problem is, though, folks. It's hard to put them down as john said, right. It's hard to put them down. When I get home. It's hard to put it down when you get home.
when you're at home, when you're in class, when you're with other people that you care about, it is challenging. So like I have anecdotal evidence I have people tell me all the time, you know, I wish my partner will put their phone down, right? Like they're ignoring me, right? You get interrupted all the time. We don't talk anymore. And so I have info of what people have told me. But I wanted to look at a couple of research studies to see Is there any proof to this right? Is there data showing that this damage is relationships? So check this out. I read a research study 2016 for anybody who's curious, the professor's who put this together are called macdaniel and coin like COI n e. They wanted to see if distractions affected people's relationships, right. So when you get interrupted by technology, when the phone rings, right, when you get a text message, when you get a call, when you start thinking about things that you want to look up, you know, those things are called Well, they call them techno ference, that's what they termed it. That's what they call this like interference like interference, Techno ference, right? And they wanted to see how often this happens and does it bother people? Hundred 43 married or cohab Dating women were in the study, right? And the majority of women in the study perceived that technology. And so they said, you know, what, like, what kind of technology, computer time cell phone time, smartphone time, TV time, all that stuff frequently interrupted their interactions all the time, all the time. And then I and then as I read more like where, where are these interruptions happening? They're happening when you're having dinner when they're happening when you're hanging out. They're happening when you're at restaurants. They're happening when you're out together when you're driving, when you're in bed, and during intimate time, right. Which kind of shocks me
as we just heard,
During Pillow Talk,
it's sad. It's sad to me to lay down the in bed with a partner, right?
And I'm on my phone and you're on your phone the whole time. While you're in bed before you go to bed. It seems More mind blowing. To me again, like we said to be with a partner intimately and then to, you know, I just don't know how to do it. You know, I don't know how to be intimate with somebody right? To be feeling these physical things and then be like, you know, and then being on my phone so I'm it's, it's, it's insulting. I think what's even even more insulting sometimes is after an intimate activity, the partner goes straight to their phones, right? And you're like, thanks.
you know, I mean, his head. Like, I'm gonna ask him about that last part. But, but has that stuff ever happened to you guys? Like, like when you're with people? Do they go on their phones? Are they distracted? Like ski racing? It doesn't happen to you all the time.
The other question is, does it bother you?
Because that's what the studies showing here. Right? So I read this study, and I was looking at, I was looking at the results section and it says that for those women who said that it happens all the time, the more the interference happens, the more relationship conflicts they have, the more arguments they have, the more resentment that they have, the more that their life satisfaction is down. And the one thing that surprised me was they also reported depressive symptoms on top of that, too. And so that so that, you know, again, I'm not surprised that the phone is going to annoy your partner. And then and the phone is going to cause jealousy and resentment and whatnot. But depressive depressive symptoms, at least, that was one of the first studies that I noticed that so I guess we gotta make a conscious effort to put the phone down. Because, john, like you said, they're basically saying that I'm not worthy of your attention, right? So I get that, you know, I mean, if I'm sitting there for two hours at home on my couch, and my partner potentially is on the phone the whole time. And I'm thinking to myself, you know, these are two hours that we should be saying hi to each other, right, we should at least ask each other how our day is. And so I guess that I can see where that's irritating. It's not absurd, I think for your partner to want you to be there mentally and physically. Can I tell you guys about a second study?
Do we got time? Yeah.
2008 This is two years ago, right? The professor's here are called Lapierre. And Lewis, they asked 170 students, college students, what they think about their partners phone dependency. And so they're looking here, not how much you use it, but how much you think you need it. Right? Which is mirroring again, what john talked about to how much the dependencies here. So the more dependent that you think your partner is to their telephone, again, the lower your satisfaction is going to be in your relationship. But the kind of the interesting thing that I found here is the more unsteady you think that relationship is, the more rocky you think it is, the more you think to yourself, you know, I don't know if this is going to continue. I don't know if this is going to go long term so you have uncertainty in your relationship. Again, I think there's some level of jealousy there to be honest with you. If you think that you know if i think that my partner is so dependent on that to where they need That more than me, where do I stand? And so I can see where it causes those kinds of issues. So, again, just some things to consider. So I'm going to ask you guys to consider these questions. Um, so the studies are saying that they tend to hit and five times these interruptions happen in five times. When you're in bed, when you're eating, when you're hanging out, when you're in your car. And I guess those four things, can you take a moment and ask anybody that's sitting directly next to you which one of those four things would bother you the most? When you're in bed? When you're driving when you're at dinner, or when you're hanging out? Like if your partner kept getting interrupted, like, like, go ahead and ask I'm curious. What do you guys think?
You can think of friendships as well?
Yeah, you're not in a relationship. I don't go to bed, my friends,
family and friends. Yeah.
Are you guys bothered by that? I mean, I would, I guess, maybe not so much in the car.
I think I'm the one that bothers right there.
it's just something to consider. And we're not going to answer necessarily like, you know, like who's bothered by what but but just give you just as, as a therapist, here's what I would tell if that was an issue that was in my office when I'm working with a couple. This is what I would tell them I would say if the pillow talk stuff bothers you, just try to make a pact to just put them away, put them away before you go to bed. Try to put them away during intimate activities, please your meal time turn them off unless somebody ya know it. Unless you're depending on somebody like in my case, if I'm out to dinner, and I got somebody watching my child, I just might keep my eye on my phone just to make sure that the babysitter's college or something like that example. In the car, if that bothers you You and you really enjoy your conversations in the car again, put them away there. Or if you must answer your phone during a leisure activity, I think research indicates that you should probably just tell your partner, here's why I'm answering it and just giving them an explanation or respect. And which kind of ties into a bit what Professor Baker was gonna. And, uh, he was he, when he and I were in the office talking about our talking points. And he says, you know, you miss out, you miss out sometimes unlike the authentic experiences, right when you're with people, and it's embarrassing sometimes to tell somebody can you repeat that again, you know, I mean, you missed those moments. So, so that's one thing, and Mitch was saying, since we're on our phones so much. We forget how to be bored. Yes. And we forget how to be mindful, right. And that kind of thing. He says, just kind of tough to where you're always kind of connected. You know, I maybe you could talk about social awkwardness too, because We talked about that in the office as well. But even those are other things. I have the Tinder stuff to that I want to talk about, but you know, but uh, but maybe.
I don't know. It's not good news.
I think you should expound on that a little bit, Nick, on the Tinder stuff. I mean, everybody knows somebody who has it. You know, nobody here has it. But everybody knows someone knows a friend or the other Tinder like apps because there's so many No,
all right, I'm gonna tell you what I the notes that I took here are a lot of dating apps, right? Tinder is one of the number one ones. In my human sexuality course this past week, we talked about how physical attractiveness is one of the major determinants for considering dates considering people that you're going to be with, you know, and Tinder I think, you know, highlights that because, I mean, you have to think that they're good looking to swipe right, right. Of course, one of the issues is when they show up, they might not actually look like that. And, and, but if you swipe left, and I've never used Tinder
they tell me it's free.
When my students said, you know, sign up, and she was like, I'm like, I don't want to sponsor my divorce
and having a man, you know, no, no, but in all seriousness, if you swipe left, you know, this might you're missing out on somebody who could be your potential soulmate, right? Your key person here, so I'm so sorry. So I guess with the appearance thing, it could be pretty shell. The good thing about Tinder is you can meet a lot of people you can meet a lot of people expand your dating pool. There's a lot of cool stuff on people's profiles. You can even find friends to hang out with. If you're on vacation, and you don't want anything else. I mean, that's those are some of the positive parts about Tinder. The other thing to know about and if you're looking to hook up with somebody, right? There's that two, which I think is what it's known for. Right?
Two research studies that I read one from 2014, one from 2015. Right says that. I don't know if you agree with this, but this is what the data says. Women are more interested in have if women are going to have sex. They're more interested in having sex within committed relationships. Men might be more seeking short term sex, if they use Tinder, right? And women might be looking for more commitment in love. So they're, they're using it in different ways. That's what the data says. Do you think that men are looking more for hookups and women are looking more for committed relationships?
I see a strong know in the audience. Okay,
So you're saying, Carlos,
that women might be using it for hookups to but the social desirability piece right in our society, right. And the shame, if you will, you know, and that kind of thing, the double standard that exists for women, right? Okay. So maybe that's where the research is coming from. And, and so, the research is indicating that you just might find, you might find yourself disappointed to know that the partner that you're hoping to find, isn't really looking for a long term relationship, you know, That kind of thing. So, and I don't want to scare anybody.
But this is going to scare you, but
go for it. So I started looking up like, you know, dangers of Tinder. And I didn't read anything about murders, but one of my students said you could get murdered.
But I read more about robberies.
And like people create fake profiles, they meet you, they lure you, and then they rob you, right? I mean, I guess I'd rather be robbed, then then be harmed, you know, in other ways, but so I read, you know, how do you protect yourself from that? So one of the things that one of the articles that I read online said, I don't know how I feel about this. But if I go on a Tinder date, I'm to take a picture of that person and then send it to a friend
just in the event that they harm me or do something to me. So maybe that's a suggestion I might give you guys.
So anyway, technology again, it could help it can help people in some relationships. And there's some downside sites as well. Anyway, that's all I wanted to share. I did I did. I wanted to say that, you know, people, different genders appear to be using it in different ways.
Well, thank you for that. Professor sheezus. And techno ference, that's what we call it. I bet I get really preachy about the no cell phone use because of the distraction in my class and about how you don't learn as well and things like that. But the truth is, since I'm with psychology people, I'll go ahead and dig deep and admit, I really actually just take it personally. And at one time I, I reprimanded one of my students for texting during class and said, How would you feel if you came and saw me to have a conversation about something and I was just texting the entire time? And he looked at me and he said, I feel like I was talking to anybody in my generation, like, oh, oh, do you stand it? All right. Okay. So now it's not all bad when it comes to how our gadgets and phones and technology influence us emotionally. You know, it's not always all bad and to talk to her that I'm going to give you professor Mr. Rogers. I think that that last comment you made about your experience with your student is the perfect segue into this because as I was thinking about what am I going to say today because now I'm not I'm no longer matchmaker.
Though it was an honor. I was thinking many of you have never grown up, not knowing what it's like to be in the age of the no cell phone. I had cartoons that was about all the entertainment I had, I had no connectivity. If there was no neighbor available. I was solo I had a self soothe fight. If my parents yelled at me, I had no one to reach out to. So in a way I was thinking it's sort of a good thing that this entered into two people's lives. There are a lot of situations there's a lot of us as counselors, we know it's counselors, we know that life is not fair. And that often many of us live in situations that have chronic toxic stress, whether that be invited into our life or it just is in our family. dynamic and sometimes that phone can be a real lifeline. So that's where my mind went immediately. And then I saw the Super Bowl and I saw this commercial I'd like to play. I'm not sure if this is legal.
just pause the record button Troy
This is on Super Bowl.
Show me photos of me and lauretta
hated my mustache.
Remember, lauretta love going to Alaska
Show me photos from our anniversary.
Remember, she always snorted when she land.
Play our favorite movie.
Remember, I'm the luckiest man
in the world.
So that commercial
elicits a lot of neurotransmitters in my brain. I get emotional every time I see I've seen it. And it reminded me as I was looking at my phone and trying to invent what I was going to share with you today, I thought, why do I like you? Why am I not in a relationship with you? Why do I spend more time with you than I do my children and husband at times, there are days where I am that person. I don't drive in text but I'm, I'm on the phone a lot in my car waiting for my kids to get out of this or that. And the answer that came to me was very much like that commercial. on here is a recording of my life. It touches my explicit and episodic memories in such a very tender way, it has an exact recording of every life event, since I've bought the phone in more detail than even those who are close to me could recall. And remember. So I think that's speaking of attachment and attachment theory. I think that's why I'm so attached to it. But also, I wanted to share with you all, you know, it's my favorite color. It's an extension of myself. It's personalized. I have my little avatar my daughter taught me how to create has its own ringtone. So it's personalized to me, it's an extension of me. But also, in November of 2013, I had had a stroke. And if I didn't have an attachment with my phone like I do, I don't know that I would be here. So my stroke rendered my ability to talk impossible. It paralyzed the right side of my vocal cords. So my speech was inaudible I could make sound but you couldn't hear. You couldn't discern the words. I had involuntary movement that was visually scary. The paramedics arrived on the scene and when you see fear and paramedics, paramedics eyes, it's not comforting. So as a counselor, I was trying to calm him down and and so I began to text him it when I was in the ambulance will get through this and I would show him he said, Are you on any medications and just so that it creates a visual for you? Aha, that's how I sounded. So I could say I could shake my head I understood him but he said which medications How do you say you know heart I was I had I had a heart attack prior to this. How do you say any ACE inhibitor or pronounce that even in the English language, let alone when you're immobilized. So I was spelling out my medications and I saw it comforting him and He said, How do you feel and I said things feel like they're getting slightly better. Now that was a lie. But I didn't need him to also have some sort of traumatic event associated with with our exchange. And as a result, we developed sort of a friendship over time because he said that was the first time he truly felt helpless. He didn't know what steps to take. And he was calling and in his hand was shaking, he was calling the ER and telling them that I was on my way. Also, it allowed me to stay in touch with people who wanted to know what was going on the entire neighborhood wanted to know it was kind of the resident sick person in the neighborhood and they knew the ambulance was likely for me. So it was a nice way to reassure people. I guess my point is when I look at this, I do have a relationship with it. I I have good memories and not so good memories, but it's been with me through thick and thin and it has a recording of now I have medications in my phone. So I can Pull up in my notes and I can spare myself typing things out if I'm rendered paralyzed in any other way. So I just I thought that that would resonate with people because I knew we would be talking about some of the dangers and and how it how it affects some of our vulnerabilities and insecurities how it affects our brain. But it also is very much associated with our, our memories. And I think it can elicit our happy neurotransmitters it can our serotonin, our dopa mean, seeing a picture, my wallpaper is my children and this just is an involuntary joy reaction to seeing their faces and it's a beautiful way to go into a session with a student or to just face the day. So I wanted to share that with you all because I know there's probably some of you saying, you know, you all didn't grow up with phones and don't understand what this is like some of you are of my age or older and may understand what I'm saying. But I thought sometimes keeping a Real and sharing being vulnerable is more impactful than some journal article.
So that's basically all I had to share. You know, can I add
that is a great story. I mean, that is a great story and I you know, as you're talking I don't think about the the memories that are created and all the pictures and I'm older than most people in the room, but I would be lost if I cannot connect to my two grown children who are married and living out of state and living far away. Because I can connect with them. We use Google tool or hangouts or whatever is available. Because I have grandchildren I have a new daughter in law and I would be lost if I didn't have that connection. Because it's not the same when you talk on the phone. I could see their faces I could see. I could see my my four month old granddaughter so that is something that we I do have to honor how important it is. Just thought I'd like to share that till
I was just going to ask a question. That's okay. Am I stealing your job? I would just I'm interested in in after you've heard what we've had to say today. Is the audience leaning one way or the other in terms of are these relationships with our devices? Good? Are they neutral? Are they not so good? Is that a hybrid?
Can somebody speak to their thoughts? And we have to have a microphone for you in the back?
Raise your I'll come to you.
I would like to hear from you all to how how these devices have impacted your life.
Hi, my name is Crystal. And I think I think that it's a bit a little bit of both actually. I think that they can be useful and helpful, but I think that we should maybe try to prove our use of it at times Because it can get in the way of our relationships. So yeah, I think that I think it's a mix of both pretty much
that techno ference, which is the word of the day.
I love that.
When we were able to add that to
No, to me, it's, it's like, like what everybody say like everybody uses them, right? But it's the social media, I think is the problem. I don't think that it's like the phone itself. I think the phone is very helpful. I think it's the social media part that ruins the relationships for us. Like you made me cry when you told this story is a really good story because my great grandmother, a stroke affected my family. So like that was really smart. Like you were really quick on your feet. As a counselor, like I think it was really cool how you tried to like calm the guy down even though you're the one who needed help. So kudos to you. Thank you. I still teared up from the story because it was so good. Like, I'm happy to see you doing Good, thank you.
Yeah, you know,
but I don't think I Yeah, me too. I'm happy. You're okay. I don't think that it's the phones. I think the phones are great. And I work for Verizon. And I see, like, so many ways that the phones are helpful. Like, I met this little boy, he had autism. And he air dropped me to my phone, a little boy with autism he loves. I don't know what you call him. It's crazy, because I see him every single day, but like he's infatuated with. I can't think of it but he loves him. He takes lots of pictures of them, and iPad and things like that. It helps them so to sum it all up. I think that the phones aren't bad. It's not the phone. It's the social media that we use on the phone that makes the phones toxic to our relationships.
That's what I think that's a good point. Yes.
Because they are separate. I think
life on social media, certainly not real life. So
hi, I just had a question. far as like the human brain does a human brain know that the phone is a device? Like, like the old man, What was her name? Lorena Lorena, like when she's saying I love you? Does the brain know that that's not Lorena cuz he's like it's a relationship, right? Like if my girlfriend texts me, if she said it to my face. I'm happy I smile, right? If you text it to me, I'm getting that response. So does my brain realize that hey, that's not really her. That's why I can deny it. Like it's giving me happiness laughs and movies, whatever I'm watching. Absolutely.
I think that it I don't want to speak for everybody. But I think that absolutely, there are similar neural transmitters released and responses and it does happen to the different pieces of your brain that are connected to your girlfriend, or your partner emotionally. The research that is now coming out, we'll be looking at how similar our relationships with our phones are to romantic relationships to relationships with our parents from infancy. So I don't know that all of that neuroimaging research is out just yet. But you know, I hope I look forward to it. I would say yes.
Let me add to like that actually, in a lot of cases, the answer is no, that the inventors are producers, manufacturers or retailers. Even more than brilliant minds like this, of course on this panel, MIT, you aren't here like, you know, students of human behavior. I say some of the greatest minds in terms of you understanding human behavior, work in advertising and marketing and public relations. So these things trick the brain into making the brain think that it's quote unquote, real. Okay, so even even that commercial, I saw a commercial Super Bowl, and I had a really negative visceral reaction to it, which I think I'm in the minority. And one of the reasons was because the like Google was using purpose. personal pronouns like I'll remember. And people talk to Siri like, What did she say? This is not a person. This is a thing. Okay? Your phone is a thing, okay? It's your computer to thing. It's not a person. So Noah trick tricks the brain to think that something is more real than actually,
except that I feel our brains wired the same now, because our brains are shaped by our experiences and people who grow up with an iPad in their hand or device in their hand, they give my daughter an iPad when she was going into the MRI, or some some kidney tests or something like this. So I'm not sure our brains are all wired the same as we evolve as a species. And if you have, if you grow up with an electronic device,
I don't. For me, the verdict is still out and
it'll be interesting and then so similar like as far as like being in abusive relationship, You know, you come up with the things that are positive right through told me all these negative things about the phone, but if I love my phone, you know, it's not going anywhere. So,
you cannot deny you cannot deny human connection in eye contact facial expressions and body language. I mean, because how many of us have been asked, How are you doing? And you say fine. And but you're not fine. because your body is saying that now, if you did that through text, you cannot you can't read people cannot read you when you say I'm fine in a text. So, you know, I mean, there's different ways of thinking of this. I don't think there's right one wrong answer one right answer here. I think that's part of the issue.
Right? It's hard to pick up on tone in texts.
Except when it's all capital. Yeah. I've gotten myself in trouble.
Um, my name is chance I wanted to mention, like, I'll be talking to my friend about a subject Then I'll go on social media like Instagram, and a ad will pop up about what we'll be talking about. So that's where I get suspicious about the phone and technology, because you never know what's going on. Now, you may be aware of what's going on right now. But I feel like it's things are much deeper in way they are.
Yes, that's a great point, pick up. Our phones pick up on all of our habits, right.
I didn't have time. And I don't know if I was going to talk about it. But I mean, there's this app that was looking at called glow GL o w, that if you enter is a fertility app, right, and a ministration app and you enter the days when your period starts, you enter the days where your period ends, and you enter your body temperature each day. And it gives you an algorithm over 30 days of like one of the safest days to conceive one of the safest days where you want to avoid interaction if you don't want a child, I mean, that's kind of helpful, right? I think it is a little bit weird. You know, when it when the alarm goes off, you don't today, you should, you know, conceive like, Okay.
What are we doing at nine, you know,
however, but I'm wondering like, you know, so. So that so my personal information in that aspect right, you know might get sold to somebody, right? And so that's where they develop ideas on how our bodies work. Right. And so you're right that that is the downside to that the fact and john, you were talking about how you know, we're tracked all the time, right? I mean, I kind of like it in some respect, because, you know, if I was a drug dealer, I guess it's good for the police to know where I'm at and what I'm doing and if I get carjacked, it's good for them. It's good for the cameras to see that but on the other hand, you know, we don't know how that they might use all that kind of stuff. So anyway, but you're right.
Now I would like to point out that it is 130 so I am going to officially Joran however if you want to stay back and approach the table and ask some more questions to some people as an individual, by all means, but I would like to say thank you for coming. Thank you so much for your support
about a round of applause. Yes.
Thank you all your comments.