Now a days we come across kids as young as a year or even younger looking or trying to use mobile phones, listening and watching rhymes and videos on them. Their parents look equally excited that how the baby is learning things so fast and is technologically advanced. Specially in kids younger than teenagers the electronic device is not majorly for calls and messages rather its more for gaming, it can be a 6 year old kid who is an adherent fan of candy crush or a 9 year old who wants to keep playing Minecraft and Roblox with his online friends. Most of the times these online friends are unknown people, but the child feels them real and close than family and relatives present in flesh and blood. In this article I will share views on how Kids and Mobile Phones-A Dangerous Friendship.
These kids don’t belong to a particular financial class, from rags to riches whoever has a mobile and a kid this kind of friendship blooms. And In a growing country like India the danger of mobile addiction is knocking on almost every door. When the electronic device changes its place from being a communication device and start taking control of the child’s life, his mood swings, his performance in school, his interest in sports and hobbies it’s a parents responsibility not just to get worried but take majors to wean the child off from these digital devices.
When the child starts talking only about these games, is glues to the smart phones for a very long time, becomes more interactive with his online imaginary friend, wants lonelier time is when you need to get alert. Before taking harsh decisions analyses behavior of the child, what changes have gradually happened in his day to day activities, try restricting his mobile time and see how he reacts does he get hyper, kids start showing signs of craving.… and if so it’s time to take action. Kids feel important, have sense of achievement when they cross levels of different games, and when there online friends appreciate them.
Kids now a days are under equal stress as their elders, not having a phone or not playing a particular game can be an identity crisis or reason for shamming by friends. Sometimes we only think from our perspective but if you really want to help your child, please try and understand why he does it, why is it so important for him.
The child might be under a huge peer pressure to have a mobile phone with the latest technology and design and to come online to play a particular game. There are so many social games like clash of clans, clash royale, Minecraft, school of chaos etc.
At some point and time as a Parent you gave him acceptance because you were busy and you thought this as convenient and safe way of engaging the child.
When you know that the damage has been done, or the child is sitting on the fence, please hold his hand. Remember as a parent you are still the boss.
Remember basics of parenting. Kids don’t follow what you say, they follow what you do. So please show them that there can be life without these devices.
Have healthy conversations, LISTEN to them. More they share, they would feel involved, and they will feel wanted.
By snatching away their phones/ tabs start with Setting boundaries and limits the time they can spend online. Ask them to use their internet time judicially.
Get involved in indoor and outdoor activities, your 15-20 mins can kill that urge of holding the tab again.
Because you never know if the child is going totally into a wrong space and if he is being cyber bullied, his online friends are asking him to take up self-harming challenges. He can’t share these with you because either he thinks you are a noob and won’t understand or you might just over react and Shout at him.
So be patient, don’t get aggressive it will make the matters only worst. Try to converse let the child open up. Communication always works.
The child is yours, Make him believe that he can bank on you.
Mobile is addiction and it cannot be fought without families help. Stand with your child. Together you can.
Happy Parenting with Budding Star …!!!
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I am residing in Noida with my husband and two lovely kids. I am a software engineer by qualification and an HR consultant with Naukri.com having more than 12 years of corporate experience.
And the life that's been such a Rollercoaster, I finally found solace in writing and started writing blogs.
I write mostly about mom in modern times and their tryst with career and family. Hope on this platform I encourage other fellow parents.