Hand Held Distance

12 05 2011

I just ran across a great post for YouthWorker (Family Time Becoming iTime) which was itself based on a New York Times article (Quality Time, Redefined).  Both articles discuss the impact that our use of technology has had on our family lives.

I have to admit, all too often this is a struggle for me personally.  In my daily life I have two smartphones (personal and professional) along with a laptop which connects me to work, friends, news, and so much more that it is so easy to disappear from my wife while sitting right in front of here.  We can sit in the same room and watch different shows on Hulu without much trouble.  Well not much trouble that we would notice at first.

The lasting impact of the hand held distance that we create as we attempt to bring the whole world into our living room might be missed for a while, but not forever.  Media, social or otherwise, is not a bad thing.  We can indeed stay connected to many more people across great distances, but if we allow great distances to be created in the relationship with whom we are the closest, we loose so much more than we gain.

For me it is a matter of mutually agreed upon boundaries.  The professional phone goes off at night.  We intentionally share the Hulu shows we watch rather than disappearing behind ear buds.  What boundaries work in your family?

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