….Katie Hafner offers a view into the lives of American teens. They are fanatical texters. As Hafner reports, “They do it late at night when their parents are asleep. They do it in restaurants and while crossing busy streets. They do it in the classroom with their hands behind their back. They do it so much their thumbs hurt.”
Authorities now blame excessive texting for sleep deprivation, distraction in school, poor grades, and even repetitive stress injuries. These teens are texting while they should be sleeping, and they are sleeping with the cell phone set to vibrate so that they can respond to texts from friends without waking parents.
Sherry Turkle, one of the most insightful analysts of digital culture, goes so far as to argue that texting is changing the way American adolescents develop. Instead of growing into independence and developing life skills, teenagers are texting mom several times a day, asking questions about decisions they should be learning to make.
On the other hand, texting also allows teens to be in almost constant and unbroken communication with peers, largely outside of parental control or knowledge. To be disconnected from the cell phone is to become a digital non-person for a period.
Christian parents bear the responsibility to monitor, supervise, and limit the digital exposure of their children…..Teens should not be allowed to sleep with cell phones in the bedroom, and parents need to set clear parameters for the use of phones for both voice calls and text messages. Commonsense rules will go a long way toward restoring sanity.
Just trying to do what we can to assist with better decision making. Obviously kids will do what they are going to do and there is little we can do to stop it. But we can put some obstacles in the way.
I collect cell phones (and iTouch) when I go to bed. Our TV is password protected for any programs TV-14 or above. Our computer is password protected at logon. We change the passwords every 90 days or so.
Any other suggestions?