Thursday, September 24, 2009

My Phone Phobia

I'm about to confess to my friends (and readers) something that many of them may have already figured out. Perhaps I need therapy for it...who knows.

I don't like answering the phone. I don't like making phone calls.

Lately I've been trying to trace back to my impressionable years something that may have triggered this behavior. Since, as we all know, everything about us comes from our childhood (I'm only being a tiny bit sarcastic...I do believe much of what we do and how we think comes from childhood)!

My sister and I never understood why our parents didn't like answering the phone. They had an answering machine, and every time the phone would ring, they would wait to see who was on the other end. If it was family, they would pick up. If it was anyone else, more than likely they would not answer. I'm not sure why they did it this way.

With modern technology, they now have caller id. They now answer the phone every time. There must be something about knowing who they are going to be talking to before they say, "Hello" that makes this process better for them.

So now on to my own issues.

Maybe being in a house where we didn't answer the phone made me this way. I don't know. But when I hear my phone ring, I always pick it up, look at who is calling, and then decide if I think I know why they are calling. Oh, and I do have a VERY SHORT, always answer list. It is:


That's it. Sorry. Even my very best girlfriends are not on that list. More often than not, I will wait and see if the person calling will leave me a message. Then, when I listen, I can find out why they called and call them back to discuss the issue.

Why am I like this?

I actually think it became worse after I became a stay-at-home mom. I do not enjoy being on the phone and having to tell my kids to be quiet. If it's a close friend (especially if they also have kids) it's a bit easier because I know they understand. But if my insurance company is calling me and all three of my kiddos are running around, laughing or bugging each other, it's pretty difficult to have an adult conversation. I also wonder if the person on the other end is judging me if they hear rowdiness in the background.


If you call me and I don't answer, it may be because I'm changing a diaper or because I don't hear the phone. But I'll be honest. It might be because I'm having one of my don't answer the phone days.

Just wanted to try and explain it to everyone. Try to be understanding.

Ray - I answered your call yesterday. You should feel proud!

Tina - I called you last night. A big step for me!



Mrs. Haid said...

So... what about long, rambling voicemails? Are you cool with those? I prefer texts just so I don't have to talk on the voicemail... I always say way too much.

Also... funny - Readers don't always = friends according to your first line! Cool. I get it!

Tina said...

LOL - I like that I am part of the post ;o) it makes me happy I didn't have to wait an hour for an email also - and I didn't even ask to be called- so I feel super special after this post!!!

ALSO - a random thought - I know you love this blog, but I wonder if you caught this post

I know there was some discussion a few posts back - where there were alot of opinions on what you should and should not post on your blog. Some thought you should not be negative, some thought that you should post about the bad as much as the good.....etc. (we won't go any further) but I read her post and thought about that. In the middle she has a spot where she said if you didn't like what you were reading to hit the little x in the top right corner. She goes on to express all the things that she will talk about because it is her blog.

I love reading your opinions, the good, the bad, the God fearing, the random.....

and that post just reminded me of you ;o)

Laura said...

I am exactly the same way and over time it has caused a few social problems with friends.

So- if I knew then, what I know now, I still wouldn't want to answer the phone, but I would carve out time to call people back.

PS. I still don't answer the phone!


Causey Fam said...

Well....I was just thinking about calling you. I thought...will she answer today, is this a good time or should I just e-mail? Then I read your post! LOL!! I'm calling anyway and will e-mail if I don't get you ;o)

Deanne Smallwood-Thomas said...

very cool of you to share! i have a similar deal, but mine is some sort of actual fear of answering the phone. i'm actually quite scared of it. texting helps me though.

don't worry, plenty of therapy to go around. although more my direction than anywhere else heehee ;)

Fear of phones said...

Your story is one of many i have recently read since i am doing a reseach on phone phobia for my lens(phone phobia cure)It is a relief coming up and saying it to a friend let alone to the world as you just did.I am sure this post will help other even just to know they are not alone.keep it up

Mindy said...

I can relate! I don't like answering our landline because I have no idea who it is, and if I were to answer, I may get stuck talking to someone even if I don't want to. If someone calls on my cell phone and I don't know the number, then I usually let my voicemail answer for me. I feel more prepared for who it is and what they may want, incase I have to answer a request or something on the spot. However, if they don't leave a voicemail, my curiosity gets the best of me so I call them back! Sometimes even if it is someone that I have in my phonebook, I let my voicemail take over.
I don't like making phone calls to people I don't know, even if it's silly like ordering a pizza. I'm can't really give an explanation for that one, except for my introverted personality!

Stephanie said...

I am the exact same way. We just recently got caller ID and to be truthful, it's amazing!! I hate talking on the phone. I am definitely more of a texter or emailer. I can talk wonderfully with my fingers, but I always seem to jumble my words or trip over my tongue when I'm being verbal. My husband does most of the talking, so I guess one person in the house that talks is better than none!! My kids are actually more verbal than I am. That's probably not a good thing!!

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