Thursday, October 13, 2011

A Parent in your Pocket

This will be the title of this generations Dr. Seuss book.......

There's a parent in your pocket
Check your phone, do not lock it
Need a "thing"?
Give a ring
Mom will listen, solve and fix it!

Ha...... maybe I should write it! 

My children have cell phones.  I want them to have cell phones.

I thought it was about safety - so they could call me if they "needed" me. 
I thought it was about independence.

But really on one hand it's like a long digital leash for me.......I get to yank on it (aka text or call them) and they respond. And for them it's like having their parent in their pocket.

In my recent ponderings about technology etc. I am wondering if this "parent in your pocket" is a good thing or not? 
Does it foster independence or does it take away their problem solving ability. 
Do they try and think about what they should be doing or do they just call/text Mom? 
Maybe it is just my kids?
Or maybe this generation of kid is problem solving using the technology at hand....... maybe in the past you asked a neighbour or a trusted adult to help if you were stuck and your parents weren't around but now....well......your parent is in your pocket?

While I do love getting the texts - especially the "I love you Momma" ones.......they send me photos of where they are and what they are doing.......they faithfully text when leaving school and when they are home...they text me shopping lists and reminders.....they text me they are running away from school because the teacher sucks (of course my children don't text during school, right, Lindsay?) works well.

Most of the time........

Just lately I have felt I was doing too much parenting by text message - solving too many issues / disputes, soothing too many upsets.......

But as someone pointed out, and the point is well taken, at least it's me they are texting for help..... I guess it's up to me to put some boundaries around how sucked in I am going to get.

So your parent's in your pocket
it's a help - do not knock it
If you find 
You're in a bind
Stop and think "Can I do it?"
And if you're stumped or pumped or dumped
Call your Mother , you know she'll love it!

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