Put the phone down and join reality


Jessica Adair

58 percent of teens have sent a text during class.

Jessica Adair, Staff Writer/Columnist

News flash: if you don’t look at your phone for five minutes, the world isn’t going to erupt into flames and the sky isn’t going to fall. Everyday I am bombarded with people who are constantly glued to their phones and it has got to stop.

I remember when I was in middle school and I had a friend who would have a huge birthday party every year. Immediately when we walked through the door to her house, her mom would take all of our cellphones and put them in a bucket until the end of the night. I miss those nights because I could talk to my friends without them tuning out to check their phones every time I started a sentence.

I can’t even begin to describe how annoying and insulting it is when you’re trying to talk to someone and they’re pretending to listen, but all they’re saying back is one-word answers because they are having a deep conversation with somebody who isn’t even physically there. The main reason why my parents didn’t want me to get a phone was because of that.

You should be focused on the people who are actually there with you and not the people who are sending you messages through the air. I don’t know what it is but there are some teens who literally hold on to their phone like it’s their life raft and if they let go, even for a second, they will drown.

Teens can’t even put away their phone when they go to bed, as 4 out of 5 teens sleep with their phone, according to a study done by the Pew Internet and American Life Project. Dr. Suzanne Phillips, a licensed psychologist and psychoanalyst, said that the main reason for this is that “teens feel the need to be available at all times. They sleep with their phone under their pillow case so they can help a friend at a moment’s notice.”

While I admire the dedication to friendship, I’m just wondering- what’s your plan if you’re sleeping and a friend calls you in the middle of the night?  You’re asleep, in your pajamas, and miles away from the problem, how much can you really do? Unless it’s a life or death situation, it can wait until morning.

Another place where teens can’t seem to put the phone down is at school. I understand the need to send a quick text before class starts or even in the middle of class, but I don’t understand the need to use it the whole time. According to Pew, 58 percent of cell-owning teens have sent a text message during class. Not only is this a distraction to other students, but also a distraction from what is being taught in class. I don’t see how any student could absorb anything when they are just texting under the desk the whole period.

To those of you who are seriously addicted to your phones and can’t put them down for one second without getting anxiety about what you missed, I offer my deepest condolences. Every minute you spend texting is a minute you could have spent being present with those who are actually here, and that’s just the way it is.




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