Your Phone is Making You Rude
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Leandra recently emailed me a Daily Beast article that began with the quote, “I’m sitting on a toilet talking to you right now.” What followed was not, as the above image might suggest, that a phone falls to its watery death. Rather, the toilet-talker and NY Times Best-Selling author Joseph Grenny was making a joke to underline his point about how rude we’ve all become on our phones.

I’m absolutely guilty of iPhone addiction. Any time I’m at dinner I find it absolutely impossible to not check my screen, and just last night a friend getting ready for a date wrote me to ensure that I’d be texting her throughout.

“You can’t check your phone!” I hypocritically reminded her, but I knew all too well the fear of entering a first date without your digital security blanket.

According to the article, these “Electronic Displays of Insensitivity,” or EDIs, have a legitimate damaging effect on relationships. In a study led by Grenny where 2,025 people were involved, 89 percent reported damaged relationships due to friends and family ignoring them for technology. For one in four, that’s led to a serious fight.


It seems that each of us knows when it is and isn’t appropriate to use our phones. Dinner: no. During/mid/post hook-up: no. Family time: no. An intimate hang out: no.

It’s just that — similar to the days of sneaking texts fairly blatantly under our backpacks in class — no one seems to adhere to the rules. But if it really is having a legitimate affect on our relationships that matter, maybe it’s time to flush our phones down the toilet (proverbially!!) in the presence of those loved ones who we’d like to keep around.

But what about you? Any of this ringing true?

And sorry for the rhyme, but why is it so hard to do?

[What to Answer: Your Phone or Your Wife via The Daily Beast]

Illustration via

  • thebloginista

    My boyfriend absolutely hates when I look at my phone during dinner. I used to get annoyed with him for telling me to stop, but then I realized how obnoxious it really was and how much I would hate him doing that to me. We agreed to not use our phones at the table anymore, whether we’re eating at home or at a restaurant. It used to give me anxiety to not be able to check my messages, but now I find it quite relaxing and my version of a digital detox.

  • Aubrey Green

    My boyfriend does this to me and I want to kill him; what is the best way to poison someone? I stop talking to him at the dinner table when he does this, then he gets confused and I tell him, “oh, shit, sorry, I was talking to my other more important friends, you know the imaginary ones.”

  • Dominique

    i recognize this..


  • Ancient

    Or the opposite! IF you are not addicted to social media/ technology of any kind and lose friends because you only want to do this old school thing called “talking.”

  • No mobile in the toilet for me! 😉

  • I actually had a friendship end because of this. Not *only* because of this, but it was the whole “you never text me, you don’t like my status updates, you don’t tag me on IG, etc etc” (and this was a friend – not a partner!). It’s strange isn’t it? When I was in the 5th grade, no such need existed; By senior year of hs it was a part of the daily life.

  • Sunday Scaries


  • pamb

    I think it’s essential to start young; unfortunately, we all started too late! I have a 12 year old daughter with her first cell phone, so we can start from scratch. No cell phones at the table, parents, too. Phone lives in the kitchen at bedtime, so no midnight texting. OK to play on the phone at a restaurant while waiting to order, but put away after that. Pay attention to the people in front of you, not the people who aren’t there.

    Make a pact with your friends and do it Old School. You can do it!

  • It’s so true- I find it so rude when friends tune me out and check their phones. :/