14 seconds

Last weekend, my daughter had some friends sleepover. They had a great time as usual, playing, laughing, watching movies, eating, baking, staying up late, the whole nine.

And then came the morning and it was time to drop them off back at their homes.

So, we piled into the minivan and one of her friends ended up riding shotgun up front with me. It didn’t take long for me to notice how often she was either checking or replying to text messages. I soon decided that I’d count seconds between one flip-open of the phone to the next.

She averaged 11-14 seconds. Every 11-14 seconds, she was sending a text message.

Now, you might be reading this thinking, “Oh that’s nothing, I text like every 4-5 seconds.”

But it wasn’t the texting that bugged me. Not at all. I text quite a bit myself. In fact, I’m the top texter on staff, I’m proud to say. So, texting is fine with me. But when this girl was in her texting world, I noticed something.

Right before she started with her texting, we were having a conversation. It was very pleasant. But the instant that phone opened she could no longer carry a cohesive thought. Her replies to my questions seemed as if she wasn’t even listening to me at all. Oh, she answered but her answers made no sense. She was saying things totally unrelated to the conversation. It was comical but also it was a reminder that I want to be present with the people I’m with. Not doing so shows disrespect to them and it cheapens me, too. What I mean is, I look like a jerk when I make others feel devalued.

Now, you might totally disagree with me. And that’s okay. Its just that I was interested (and kind of saddened) to see the effects of texting on our sense of etiquette and courtesy.

If you text or have friends who do, have you seen the same thing I saw that morning?

Use the comments section below!

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