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A third of Kiwis in relationships negatively impacted by partner's phone use


New research shows a significant amount of people are impacted by their partner’s use of a device.

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Steven Dromgool spoke to TVNZ1’s Breakfast following new 2degrees research into phone use. Source: Breakfast

The Good Chat relationships research from 2degrees has found that more than one in three people feel negatively impacted by their partner spending too much time on their phone.

And 46 per cent of those people say phone use has affected their relationship with young children.

Relationship expert Steven Dromgool told TVNZ1’s Breakfast it’s a common issue that most couples should be talking about.

"Anything that takes your focus and attention away from your primary bond is something that's going to be a problem," he says.

He says phones have a way of intruding into our world.

"In most relationships there tends to be one person who's more sensitive to that and one person who's more prone to using a device," he says.

Mr Dromgool says excessive parental technology use can have a long-term effect on children.

"What we do know is that when children don't receive emotional engagement it impacts their ability to bond at a deep level.

"They are more likely to become anxious in relationships or learn how to attach to objects rather than people," he says.

Ultimately he says, the social impact can be severe resulting in alcoholism and crime.