There are four people in my relationship.
Me, my boyfriend, his phone, and my phone.
We all live together under one roof, and sometimes even share a bed. We spend all of our time together – going for walks, working, eating dinner, even hitting the town for a cocktail or two. It’s busy, sharing our precious time between four people, but we’re just all too involved to ever break it off.
Or are we?
Welcome to 2016, the golden age of Screen Rage. We balance an uneasy truce between life and life online; simultaneously loving and hating the glowing rectangles that deliver us there.
Moreover, we all harbour a serious doubt that we could live a digital-free life - after all, who's there to hear a silent screen?
In an era where a tablet is something to be swiped, not swallowed; and a phone is used for, well, pretty much everything except calling people - we are consumed by the drug that is online. From iMessage chats to the endless scroll of social media feeds, our fingers give an indication to the shifting nature of our attention span: read, scroll. Tap. Read, scroll. Tap. Read, scroll. Tap. Repeat.
It is an addictive state of being, isn't it? Mindless and constant streams of information flooding through at an extraordinary rate.
We are indulged in every pervy curiosity imaginable - with little effort you can flick from a childhood friend's wedding pictures in Bali, to Rihanna's booty on a boat via Snapchat. You can Google a recipe in half the time it would take to find it in the cookbook, and order the ingredients in a fraction of the time you would spend at the checkout alone.
This tiny rectangle of plastic and glass has become as consuming and magical as a genie's bottle: in it hides our friends, our money, our knowledge, our camera, our work, and of course, our downtime.
Our phones and computers have swallowed our lives whole - and are refusing to spit us out.
Like many couples, Screen Rage is a very real cause of friction in my relationship.
"Could you put your phone down for one minute? Just one?" I whinge at the dinner table to my partner, his face lit with the pale blue light of his iPhone.
Sourly, he'll put down the phone down. We continue eating silently, with the only sound the scraping of knives and forks on the plate. Sound familiar?
Getting into bed, he'll playfully flick the phone out of my hands as I furiously type an essay to my friend via Facebook chat. "God, can you NOT? She's waiting for my reply!" The mood shifts as I snap, and I immediately feel guilty.
I recognise how toxic our connection to the online connection is becoming, but I don't know where to start in cutting it off. Is it just a utopian dream to imagine a house untangled from the iconic white umbilical cord? From waking me in the morning to serenading me to sleep at night, a life without my devices is...unimaginable.