The Digital Disconnect



by Scott Utter, Refuge Center Intern

A few weeks ago I sat down in a local coffee shop to work on a long list of tasks that I needed to get done. I quickly set up my laptop, retrieved the necessary books and writing materials from my bag, and placed everything in its rightful place at the table. As I leaned back in my chair to momentarily observe the makeshift office I had created, I reached into the pocket of my jeans to retrieve the final item that would bring balance and order to my coffee shop universe: My smartphone. The finely tuned “iPhone-reflex” in my thumb flinched to click the the home button—causing the LED screen to light up. “A few minutes won’t hurt,” I thought. I responded to a text message… which lead me to send another…which convinced me that I needed to flip through Instagram…helping me reason that I could squeeze in a level or two on that new game I previously downloaded. Before I realized it, 30 minutes of precious time had passed. To make matters worse, I hardly realized that my wife was sitting across from me.

The Digital Age has rapidly transitioned the “amazing” into what is now “obsolete”. Buttons are now touch screens. Albums are more commonly downloaded. Even the art of conversation is dying as it can now be expressed through a text message or tweet. Technology has, in many ways, made life easier. Today staying connected with others through a handheld device is commonplace, but for many families it is a factor contributing to a relational disconnect. Time passes quickly as moms, dads, brothers and sisters bury their heads in the personal, digital worlds they have constructed for themselves. This may leave you, the reader, in a place of frustration, sadness or isolation. Perhaps in the middle of the technological whirlwind you, or your family as a whole, have forgotten the need to be present for one another in your relationships. It is not too late to reconnect.

We at The Refuge Center would be honored to help you or your family during this process! If you would like to speak to a counselor about finding ways to reconnect with yourself or your loved ones, you can reach us today at 615-591-5262.

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