AIBU to think my sister is taking the mobile phone house "ban" too far?

(60 Posts)
PinkHat1 Tue 17-Dec-13 09:40:27

We're going to my sister's house for Christmas (Christmas Eve to Boxing day) and she called me to say that they have introduced a new house rule of no mobile phones being turned on in the house. She has 2 kids (7 and 10) each with a mobile and her husband has an iPad and BlackBerry for work. She says that to try and get some proper family time, phones and tablets must be switched off over Christmas. I understand her point, but think she's being a little extreme. I don't have kids but do have an iPad and iPhone... I told her that I thought her new "house rule" was going a bit far, but she said it is no different than me asking everyone to take their shoes off in my house (which I do). I've been thinking about this for a few days now and it's starting to bug me. Can I just refuse?

msvee Tue 17-Dec-13 09:42:31

You could refuse but what would be so important that you can't have your phone off for a few hours whilst spending time with family.

Cant believe the children have phones at that age !

lola88 Tue 17-Dec-13 09:42:52

Just put it on Silent and check it on the sly smile

CMOTDibbler Tue 17-Dec-13 09:44:07

You'll be able to use them in your room though, so I don't see the problem. And I think that banning everyone looking at phones/tablets over christmas is a brilliant idea to get everyone away from them and socialising

Llareggub Tue 17-Dec-13 09:44:21

I would say nothing and keep my phone on silent.

ViviPru Tue 17-Dec-13 09:44:27

Allow me to draw your attention to the Smile And Nod.

Smile and nod at her. Phone on silent, quick peek into the outside world while you're on the loo, if you're compelled to do so. I do this anyway while in company.

It would only be an issue if you had DC that you were being expected to force to comply.

No need to refuse. Just humour her.

SkinnybitchWannabe Tue 17-Dec-13 09:45:02

I think it's a great idea.

IneedAsockamnesty Tue 17-Dec-13 09:45:04

Switching off wouldn't bother me but I wouldn't socialise with anybody that assumed I needed to be told to, I'm not 12.

ViviPru Tue 17-Dec-13 09:45:09

X post with everyone. This is a non-issue.

littlepeas Tue 17-Dec-13 09:48:08

I think it's a brilliant idea. How sad that there are people out there who can't cope without their gadgets for a couple of days.

angelos02 Tue 17-Dec-13 09:49:53

Its pretty sad if you can't be without your mobile/tablet for a few hours. Lots of people don't have them you know.

TwoCatsInTheYard Tue 17-Dec-13 09:50:09

We always phone round parents, in-laws and other close family members on Christmas Day to wish a merry Christmas and thank them for presents. I assumed lots of people did this. In fact, I am pretty sure my nan used to phone her sister on Christmas Day, and they would usually be on the phone for up to an hour! Will your sister be happy for you to use her landline?

ViviPru Tue 17-Dec-13 09:54:16

Re-reading your OP, OP if she really has said you're expected to have your phone SWITCHED OFF for the best part of 3 days, then she's being potty.

If she had said "we're trying to encourage a bit of family time without constant noses in devices, if you wouldn't mind going along with this and not using your phone when we're all together I'd really appreciate it" then fair enough. I stand by my original post though. Smile & Nod.

MmeCinqAnneauxDor Tue 17-Dec-13 09:54:39

I think banning phones altogether is going to far, but banning them during Xmas dinner, or for the majority of Xmas day would be ok. (and I say that as a Social Media addict).

Is no one allowed to take photos or share on Social Media for the full 3 days then?

TwoCatsInTheYard Tue 17-Dec-13 09:58:22

No Christmas day photos either. sad

I totally understand that she doesn't want people glued to angry birds or obsessively facebooking but totally banning the outside world is extreme.

earlgray Tue 17-Dec-13 10:00:07

I think its a good idea so long as you can use them when you're not in company, ie in your room. If her kids see guests using their phones its going to make a horrible situation!

quesadilla Tue 17-Dec-13 10:05:15

I personally agree with you: I think some limits on phone/screen time are necessary and particularly at meal and communal time but a total ban is OTT.

On the other hand, her house, her rules.

uncomfortablydumb Tue 17-Dec-13 10:07:51

I can see her point, but think it's a bit extreme.

Don't agree that it is the same as shoes off.

Xpost with everyone. Smile, nod, phone on silent, check when you can.

scaevola Tue 17-Dec-13 10:09:32

She wants consistency for her DC.

Unless you are on call for work and must be contactable, then leave your phone in your room and check it in private.

AbiRoad Tue 17-Dec-13 10:10:49

Unless everyone you know who you might speak to or exchange emails/texts with over that period knows your sister's landline and can call you on that, I do not think it is reasonable to cut off your means of communication for that long (a few hours on Christmas day is fine).

But I think some limits are fine, and postiviely a good idea. My DD is gettign an IPod touch for christmas and I need to figure out a rule which allows her some time with her new "toy" but does not end up taking over christmas.

MerryMarigold Tue 17-Dec-13 10:10:59

I would abide by the rule in public but keep phone in room and use it when you are in there. It's nice to text friends etc at Christmas.

Trills Tue 17-Dec-13 10:16:06

I'm sure what she meant to say was no fiddling with mobile phones when you should be interacting with other people, or possibly no using phones in front of the children.

If that's not what she meant to say, you should tell her that it's what she should have meant to say...

throwingstones Tue 17-Dec-13 10:21:23

No Christmas day photos either.

You do realise photography was invented a long long time before tablets and smartphones?

A blanket ban is maybe a bit OTT but it's better than many households who sit there posting inane crap on facebook all day ignoring the real life right in front of them. You can refuse but she can refuse to have you there at all in response.

Dawndonnaagain Tue 17-Dec-13 10:21:45

Look, twenty years ago this didn't happen and do you know what, nobody went hungry, nobody got lost from the loo to the kitchen, everything was absolutely fine. The world continued on its way, as always. If you are really that distressed about not being able to see what the rest of the world is doing when it's family time, fine, keep it on silent. Otherwise, her house, her rules. Oh, and yes, I have put a ban on all mobile and net devices from ten on Christmas Eve until boxing day.

DeckTheHallsWithBonesAndSkully Tue 17-Dec-13 10:23:49

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

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