Hmm, I posted but it only shows the quotes. Let's see if I can do this again.
For starters, 80 texts a day.... That is 40 texts in and 40 texts out. Have you seen what these texts look like? The are typically 4 to 5 words each... little snippets of conversation. You don't think you could have said 40 lines to your friend on the phone when you were a teen? My own DD did this much the first couple months she could text but then it dropped to half of that. She's about 20 lines in and 20 lines out a day average. As long as it's before 10 and night, I see no problem with that. Wouldn't you say that the concerns the pyschologists are having could be reflective of MANY factors in the modern child's life today? Anxiety? Sleep Deprivation? Falling Grades? Do we really feel this is all texting? You don't think we can't pinpoint 20 other factors contributing to this?
I'm surprised that you are ok with facebook but concerned about texting. To me, facebook is more problematic and we only let my eldest start when she began high school. With texting, you at least know when, how much and with who they are texting. On facebook, chat is blind and you aren't going to find a record of who they communicated with or when. There is even a way for them to choose who sees them available for chat and who doesn't. Unless you are friends with ALL of their friends AND their friend's friends, what your child has written and has had written to them won't be on their wall or your newsfeed. Children have FAR more exposure to people you don't know (and they don't know) than they do with texting. I'm not saying you haven't kept tabs on how your child is using facebook at all. I'm just saying that between the two, texting is easier to track as a parent.
I was being mocking with the atari comment... not towards you but to our culture as a whole. We tend to be alarmist and often we worry about the wrong things. Our media latches on to whatever sells and they rarely tell the WHOLE story. Yes, there are going to be kids who get in trouble with texting but those kids tend to have a whole host of risk factors attached to them. Reporting that parents need to be more involved doesn't sell papers.
Yes, absolutely you should look into things before bringing them in the house. This is why my kids didn't watch TV when they were little and why we didn't have a video game system until last year and still only with totally family friendly games. I didn't want those things to be prominent figures in my kid's childhood and so I ommitted them until I knew they found LIFE more interesting than screens. However, I recognize this as my own preference. I'm not going to suggest it's wrong for ALL children and that those who let their kids watch TV and play video games are allowing them to be corrupted.
I've been working under the assumption that you are a good parent. I'm guessing you talk to your child, have meals together, communicate with the school, know your child's friends, encourage them to be involved in activities that require dedication, focus, team work, positive peer interaction... activities like sports, music, theatre, community service groups, ect. If I'm correct and you ARE this parent, texting isn't going to be powerful enough to corrupt your child. If you don't want it, I'll be first in line to support you! Let's just learn from our own history that this is an argument that will never end. There will always be SOMETHING the media is telling us to fear... let's just take a step back and really look at things in reguards to our own circumstances.
Edited by whatsnextmom - 12/30/10 at 8:58am
Originally Posted by kathymuggle
Originally Posted by whatsnextmom
By limiting your child to the landline, well, they aren't going to be communicating much with anyone. If this is what you prefer then that's fantastic. It's not what we prefer.
Fact is, this debate has been going on since the phone was invented and will go on with whatever new form of conversation follows. There was a time when no one thought a home computer would be useful lol. It's just amazing we all survived the the Atari and private phone lines like IN your own room lol.
I think it is quite a jump to say if we limit them to landline they will not be communicating much with anyone. Maybe it is a regional thing.
My DC do talk on the phone. While I am not a fan of Facebook or MSN, DD uses those as well. I also do not think people need to be able to contact their friends 24/7. The teenage years can be peer based enough without adding this element to it.
Bolding mine. I must admit I find your second paragraph a little mocking. We are not techie junkies - not do we abhor all technology. I think the culture I live in has a tendency to glom onto new technology and buy into it - whether or not it is a good idea. I think it is very reasonable to analyse new technology before letting it into your life. There are regular discussion on MDC on whether TV and video games are bad - I tend to think they are not, but I hardly mock posters who question them.
To quote the NYtimes
"Spurred by the unlimited texting plans offered by carriers like AT&T Mobility and Verizon Wireless, American teenagers sent and received an average of 2,272 text messages per month in the fourth quarter of 2008, according to the Nielsen Company — almost 80 messages a day, more than double the average of a year earlier.
The phenomenon is beginning to worry physicians andpsychologists, who say it is leading to anxiety, distraction in school, falling grades, repetitive stress injury and sleep deprivation".
That does not mean my child will develop misuse issues - but they got those stats from somewhere, and I am not so naive as to think my child is immune, either
Oh, and I have never had a phone line in my room.