Are you really alone?

Every day we communicate with others in a variety of ways including verbally, non-verbally, through touch and looks, but sometimes communication can become draining. 

There’s always a text, an email, a call, a voice memo — it never ends. So when do we pull the plug? 

Every day, The Jambar goes through concerns and public matters. We deal with information on a daily basis, but this routine isn’t meant for everyone and sometimes it can even be too much for constant communicators — and that’s okay. 

With the advent of phones and computers, we expected this to connect humanity in new ways. We were thrilled to feel wanted and reached out to, but sometimes too much is too much. Now, we see broken boundaries and burnout. 

When does that text every 10 minutes cross a line? What happened to protecting our personal health? When do you shut off your phone because an email chain becomes distracting to your own welfare?

The answer is — you can’t. Well, you can turn off your devices, but that email chain isn’t going anywhere. Those texts still exist, those emails need responses and your burnout can’t properly heal. 

Within that, new issues arise. The American Psychological Association outlines some base risks of constant media use as anxiety, stress and depression. It also lists that social media specifically has tendencies of glamorizing harmful behaviors like eating disorders, suicidal tendencies and more. 

Additionally, other issues exist with constant communication. Sometimes it pushes limits of harassment, breaches of privacy and other legal issues. 

In a society where you’re normalized into thinking something like constant communication is necessary, when do we acknowledge what’s happening needs to stop? 

Everyone has different limits, but if you’re experiencing issues you think may be telecommunications harassment, seek help. Do not be afraid to shut off your phone and step away from dangerous situations. 

Ohio Revised Code classifies telecommunication harassment in a variety of different legal areas, such as aggravated menacing in some cases. 

Telecommunications harassment also encompasses situations including if the communications purpose is to harass and abuse an individual, or can describe, suggest, request or propose that the caller, the recipient of the telecommunication or any other person engage in sexual activity. 

These are just several examples in accordance with Ohio Revised Code, but telecommunications harassment covers a variety of different areas, which are listed on ORC’s website.

Not all engagements online are harassment though, but if you feel boundaries are broken — discuss it. Take time for yourself and step away from things, like screen time, that can be harmful to you. 

Even if you’re just feeling burnt out, protect your health and put down the device. 

From The Jambar, take some time for yourself and relax this spring break. The email can wait. The texts can wait.