Is Paying Attention to Your Child Becoming a “Luxury?”
I’m no expert, but I think we’re all in agreement that basic parenting responsibilities probably include 1. Providing shelter 2. Making them eat their vegetables 3. Letting them down gently when they find out Santa isn’t real. 4. Uh…a lot of other things.
But with the relatively recent rise of cell phone use, what do good parenting habits look like in regards to technology use? We’re actually the first generation of parenting age people with 24/7 access to what’s going on in the world, at work, on Twitter, in our pockets and purses, so no one really knows the answer. But do you know what else is true? It’s your responsibility to think about it, genius.
Let’s take a little stroll down common sense lane, shall we?
A study last June by AVG Technologies surveyed over 6,000 children all over the world, ages 8-13. Research showed that 32% of kids felt unimportant when their parents were constantly distracted by their phones, and 54% of kids think their parents spend too much time on their phone.
Ironically, kids take their cue from us on how to behave, so even though they may not like it, they fall right into the same habits.
In South Korea, which is one of the most wired countries on the planet, it’s completely normal to see elementary aged students carrying smartphones in their cute little pockets. As a result, 10% of teenagers have been classified as “internet addicts,” and the South Korean government is actually starting to fund rehab camps for teenagers to detox from this addiction. Common behaviors for teens who enter this camp are lying about the number of hours they spend online, finding it more fun to be on their phone than with family or friends, and easily spending between 12-14 hours/day during weekends on the internet. A majority report feeling lonely and withdrawn, and also exhibit signs of aggressiveness and impulsiveness.
So, next time you catch yourself scrolling through your phone, maybe just ask yourself “do I know more about Kimmy K’s new perfume line than what happened in my child’s day?” If so, you may in fact be on the slippery slope to cell phone addiction. And though I’m sure she appreciates her fanbase, Kim will not be taking care of you when you’re old. Honestly, your kid may not either if you don’t start paying more attention to them.
Thankfully, the MILK App is something that can help prevent the demise of your senior care. By earning free rewards by being more present with your family, you will all learn to be more present with each other, and what could be better than that?