It's not only the other woman that can lure a husband away from marriage — so can his Blackberry. There is a reason wives derisively call this technological contraption a Crackberry — men are particularly addicted to it. And some way too much.
A new study from Sheraton Hotels of 6,500 traveling executives says that 35 percent of them would choose their Blackberry over their spouse.
Ouch. Talk about rejection. Some of the 65 percent who would prefer their wife and a little affection over the Blackberry admitted that it still was "a tough call."
I know of a wife that has banned her husband from using his Blackberry in the bedroom. The rule in the house is that if she hears that little bleep — the message he'll get is no amore.
What does her husband say? "It's Berry hard sometimes. I know I'm addicted."
Of those polled, 87 percent said they bring their devices into the bedroom. And that’s not counting the rabid text messagers on their cellphones. So must there be a new 12 step program like AA to help wean spouses from their addiction? Not yet.
Right now it's just wives putting down their stiletto heels and trying to crush the problem.
The addiction is not only with men. Female executives also admitted to falling in love with their Blackberries. One female executive was asked in the study, "Are you having a love affair with yours?"
"I am on my BlackBerry more than I see my boyfriend," she admitted.
Along with giving a loved one a kiss goodnight, another 84 percent acknowledged they check their emails right before they go to sleep.
And 80 percent check them in the morning as soon as they get up.
"It can actually ruin relationships," said Dr. Susan Bartell, a psychologist and relationship expert told CBS. Bartell said couples should be interfacing more, in person.
"People are so focused on their PDAs, they're not focusing on what might be going wrong in their relationships," Bartell said.
Of those polled, 62 percent said they love their Blackberry, and most said it makes their life more productive. However, experts suggest, for the sake of your relationship, you might occasionally, Bartell said, "Turn it off. Spend some time with your partner. Have a real relationship with a living human being."
The study was done by Sheraton Hotels. Among its other findings: More than three quarters of those polled say their gadgets give them more quality time with friends and family... and help them enjoy life more.
One wonders if the 35 percent who said they preferred the Blackberry to their true blue spouse suffer from the infidelity gene which makes them look for attachments elsewhere. However, like all addictions, this too can be tamed. It starts with awareness of the problem and a desire for change.
And the blinking message is clear with this addiction: turn on to your spouse and get him to turn off the machine.