Technology in Couple and Family Relationships
I can remember the first time I ever used the Internet. I was just starting high school and my parents had gotten a computer with something called “Prodigy”, an online service allowing dial-up connection to the Internet. I can still hear the sound of the modem waiting for the screen to come up; the anticipation of when the connection would be made; and being amazed I could write a report without looking up something in the musty, nearly-complete set of Funk & Wagnalls New Encyclopedia in the dank and webby basement. No disrespect to Funk & Wagnalls, but there was something more magical about being able to have information with the satisfying click of a keyboard.
Fast forward 30 years: I have built a career on investigating how that little click of a mouse and the buzz of a modem coming to life has impacted nearly everything we do in our relationships. The speed with which we have adopted our technologies is unlike any other advances in modern life including the Industrial Revolution. The world has exponentially adopted Internet technologies at an astonishing rate. For example, Asia has the highest number of Internet users with close to 3 billion. Closer to home, nearly 94% of the North American population is connected (Internet World Stats, 2023).