Browsing Tag

cell phone

Living Abroad, Missing Home


October 30, 2013

Today’s word of the day is……nomophobia.

Nomophobia: the fear of being out of mobile phone contact, or without your phone.

Apparently it’s actually short for no-mobile-phone phobia.

I’m going to go out on a limb here and say this is an irrational fear…most phobias are irrational fears anyway right?

Some people have phobias about the dark, spiders, being alone.  Not me, I am certainly suffering from nomophobia.

At least once a day I have this heart racing moment where I think “I’ve lost my phone!!!!!” only to realize I didn’t dig deep enough in my bag, or it’s in the other pocket of my jeans.

photo courtesy of

I am always feeling that loss of breath when my phone slips out of my hands and lands face down on the concrete and I think “oh no it’s shattered.”  It’s kinda like that feeling when I look at Princess M and know she is going to face plant and there is nothing I can do to stop it from happening….

Yep I just likened my feelings for my phone to my feelings for my child.

For about a year now I have been cursing my iPhone and wishing phones never got “smart.”  I never felt this way about my old flip phone….the only fear then was that the antenna would snap off.

Not now though. I live in fear of being without my phone.  There are a number of reasons I fear being without my phone:

  • what if the wait in the doctor’s office is long and I forget my phone?  I’ll have nothing to do because you know I won’t touch those germ laden magazines.
  • what if I forgot my phone at home and get lost on these Irish country roads…my phone is my GPS.
  • what if I don’t have my phone and I decide to spontaneously stop at the ocean and go for a walk how will I know what the crazy Irish weather will be like for the next half hour?
  • what if I’m out for coffee with the girls and the Princess starts to lose it right when we’re getting to the good chat…what will I give her as a last resort?  (go ahead judge all you want but don’t try to tell me you don’t do it too).

Sadly the list is endless, but most of all there are TWO reasons I live in fear of being without…most of all losing my phone…

  • Pictures. The hundreds of pictures that chronicle the joy of my life, I simply don’t back up enough.  OK this is getting better, with the cloud but I just got IOS 7 over the weekend because I had to take all my pictures off to make room.  Taking some of those photos off my phone felt like cutting off my arm.
  • Being out of contact with home. For even one minute.

It’s a double edge sword.  I love being in constant contact with home if needed. For the important stuff but also for the random moments (like when I just need to text my college roommate to tell him that I tripped at fell on my face in the middle of town and then walked off like no one saw).  I love treating my hometown news like is still my ‘local’ news.  And I love that I can email Mom a picture of the kids doing nothing but doing it right now.  You see without my phone I can’t pretend I am still ‘there’ when I’m actually here.

So yeah…I live in fear about being without my phone.  I’m sure you could say I am an iPhone addict….what’s the word for that?

But show me an expat that isn’t…..

Are you addicted to your phone??? Why???