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to think it's rude to have your phone out at dinner and want to say something?

(41 Posts)
CaptainWarbeck Sun 08-Jan-17 07:47:16

This is DM who we are away with on holiday for a few days. We all go out for dinner/lunch together and she will have her phone up in front of her sitting reading it while we're waiting for our food etc in a restaurant. No one else at the table is doing this.

I've tried saying we think it's rude in our house and have a rule not to do this/subsequently asking what she's reading to try and get her to at least chat if she's just sitting there but she doesn't think it's a problem. DF thinks we're making a fuss about nothing. AIBU to think it's really rude? What else can I say to try and get her to put it away for meals during this trip away?!

walkinginto2017 Sun 08-Jan-17 07:51:03

It is really rude. She probably doesn't realise there's anything to it as everyone is glued to phones these days but to me it says 'this phone is more interesting than your company'. That said, when my sister does it, I just laugh and say the above and she takes the hint quick enough.

ConvincingLiar Sun 08-Jan-17 07:54:16

It is rude. I don't think you can stop it though, anymore than you could stop her chewing with her mouth open.

Aderyn2016 Sun 08-Jan-17 07:54:29

I think it is rude too. She is basically telling you that you are not interesting enough to deserve her full attention. Can't really see the point in going on holiday/out for meals with people who cba to talk to you.
I think I would just ignore her and make my own social arrangements with people who actually want to talk to me - once she starts feeling left out, she will have to question why. You can't force a person to change without causing resentment - she has to want to!

TheDowagerCuntess Sun 08-Jan-17 07:55:28

There's nothing you can do about it, other than decline future invitations to dinner, holidays, etc - and explain exactly why.

Autumnchill Sun 08-Jan-17 07:56:21

I think it's rude and have recently had a disagreement with my sister about her daughter sitting in a restaurant with an iPad and headphones. If they don't want to interact with people, don't bloody come!

Basicbrown Sun 08-Jan-17 07:57:11

Lol. I think you should post this on gransnet with their constant trilling about young mums on phones.

Yanbu it's really rude.

Lilaclily Sun 08-Jan-17 07:57:55

Get a book or paper out , or sit on another table

CaptainWarbeck Sun 08-Jan-17 08:00:21

I'm reassured it's not just me who thinks it's rude then! Should I just suck it up for the rest of the time then or is it worth making more of a fuss about? Still got 3 days together to go.

Catsize Sun 08-Jan-17 08:04:37

It is rude.
My mum does this, and even takes calls, texts etc as I am talking to her. Her most annoying thing is being on her mobile phone to me and then picking up the landline (or vice versa) if it rings. Invariably she will then tell me she will call me back, having ascertained that the other person's call is clearly more important.
And this is a mum who is extremely hot on other manners.

Ciutadella Sun 08-Jan-17 08:04:53

Okay at breakfast as it's the equivalent of the olden days reading the newspaper! Otherwise, no. But interesting that your df doesn't think it rude - maybe they have become used to doing it with each other?

Catsize Sun 08-Jan-17 08:05:19

I suppose you could always ask the phone whether is wants a pudding?

AmaDablam Sun 08-Jan-17 08:06:31

This is definitely rude and, if you have DH's, setting a really bad example for them. It's actually more than rude, it's worrying. People are starting to loose the ability to simply sit and chat to others and all sorts of other social skills, as this sort of thing becomes the norm.

Google Simon Sinek Millennial paradox and see if you can get DM to watch his talk. Might make her think again.

AmaDablam Sun 08-Jan-17 08:08:01

DCs not DH's!

EssentialHummus Sun 08-Jan-17 08:11:01

If someone does this while I'm talking to them I stop talking, mid-sentence if need be. Then pointed stare at the offending phone. It works--when they finally look up and bloody realise--.

Megatherium Sun 08-Jan-17 08:17:40

Do you have children, and if so can you use them as an excuse - ask her to stop doing it as you're trying to stop the children doing it?

Spermysextowel Sun 08-Jan-17 08:19:22

We have a family ban on phones during a meal. Sometimes we have a 'who was in that film?' moment but then it's back to scintillating conversation.

Ciutadella Sun 08-Jan-17 08:26:04

Probably off track, but could it be that your dm is finding it hard to participate in the convo eg if her hearing has deteriorated, or maybe you're discussing things she can't join in with - tv she doesn't watch, a sport she doesn't know anything about for example?

I agree it doesn't sound like either of those is the issue as she hasn't mentioned them, but just wondering if there is more to it.
I agree about the bad example to dc.

Baddit Sun 08-Jan-17 08:27:04

Yes it's completely rude. I find it sad and worrying that she doesn't find it a problem. I wonder what she'd say if you said that if she's going to do that you'd rather she didn't come as it's setting a bad example to your children?

CaptainWarbeck Sun 08-Jan-17 08:29:40

Ama that Simon Sinek video was really interesting. Link heree* for anyone who wants to watch it.

We have an 18 month old, so he's not really old enough to make it an issue with him I guess. Although we (me and DH) do make an effort to not be on our phones around him so we're more present.

She's as bad as a teenager! When I ask her what she's doing she's just browsing apps or looking up weather for tomorrow or something.

CaptainWarbeck Sun 08-Jan-17 08:32:17

Ciutadella fair points but her hearing is fine, she's only late 50s. And we're not discussing things she's not involved in I don't think, in fact usually I'm trying to pointedly ask her a question to take her attention away from the phone.

Her and DF do just sit on their phones in the evening together, which isn't my issue, but they're obviously used to doing it.

pklme Sun 08-Jan-17 08:32:33

As she is an adult, I'm not quite sure why it is your responsibility? I discourage my children from using their phone at the table, it wouldn't occur to me to have an opinion on an adult doing it. If I was out with a friend and felt bored/ignored I would just reduce contact with that person in future. Obviously, not so easy with a relative. At least there are others at the table to keep you company!

vdbfamily Sun 08-Jan-17 08:32:58

if she lives alone it is probably just a habit she is in because she is alone normally. Just say you are trying to teach the children that phones are not okay to be on when you have company so could she desist for the holiday. We ahve this a bit at work where we tend to go to work canteen as a group to sit but some of the older team members get very stroppy when people are on their phones. We work 12 hour shifts with one 30m break and I think that if people want to catch up on messages/news/FB etc, that is fine. It is their break afterall.Not quite same example though.

pklme Sun 08-Jan-17 08:37:57

Can she still engage in the conversation while on her phone? For people who do it a lot, it's like knitting- it doesn't usually distract them from anything else and keeps them busy. I fiddle with my phone/iPad a lot these days, because if I sit down on the sofa I fall asleep! Fiddling stops me dozing off! I don't do it at the table though because I am not at risk of dozing, but it does become habitual and hard to stop.

AmaDablam Sun 08-Jan-17 08:47:44

Glad you found the Simon Sinek thing useful. Really made me think about my own phone use actually.

I don't think that 18 months is too young to be affected by DMs behaviour. He may not be able to use a phone or know exactly what one is, but he'll still be getting the message loud and clear that grandma's "toy" is more interesting than he is and that it's OK to opt out of social interaction at meal times.

I was sat having lunch with my 3 year old the other day and had to take a call. I then put my phone on the table and without even thinking about it started checking my FB. Dd got up and walked off. I asked where she was going and she replied that she was going to play with her toys. That was a real wake up call and I realised the message I was giving. I apologised, said I was going to put my phone away and asked her to come back to the table so we could finish our meals and talk to each other.

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