My livelihood depends on me being on my computer many hours a day. I feel there are some days that I’m glued to a computer almost all day long and well into the night. However, I make darn certain I give my kids at least two hours of my attention a day without some type of technology as the center of my attention UNLESS we are watching a movie together or yes, playing a Lego video game together. However, that is at max one to two days a week (depending on the weather.) Even that has been rare for us lately because we’ve been playing board games like Battle Sheep and also doing kids projects together too. (Quick side note: We have three awesome board games to share with you soon!)
The point I’m trying to make is that I strive to find that happy balance in our technology driven world, and even I fail to really do it as well as Chapman suggests we handle it in his book Growing Up Social: Raising Relational Kids in a Screen-Driven World. To be truthful, I don’t see where I’ll ever get it 100% right because it seems that more and more things are becoming technology based. I’ve found that unless my kids can gain instant gratification from learning something new that they flat out won’t learn it. It’s almost like it’s almost too late for them to go back to learning the way I did when I was growing up.
I’m Guilty of Causing the Problem; Are You Too?
Chapman points out in many areas of his book how much he fears for our kids and the future generations. I feel the same fears he does. I know I’m just as guilty as many other parents for contributing to the problem. Just the other day Jimmy asked for his Kindle Fire, when he had the clear chance to interact with other kids from his school and other mothers. I declined his request and had him instead join me in conversations with others. When we left, he thanked me for making the deal with him that we both wouldn’t touch our technology devices and instead focus on getting to know those around us. It was fun hearing other people’s stories like I did when I was growing up.
Our kids are missing out on many things from US because we have our noses glued to our screens a lot. I know I’ve seen many times where families may have been out together as a family, but one or more or all of them are glued to some type of technology device. (I’ve been guilty of it myself!!) I think we are forgetting that those are PRIME times for getting bonds with our family members.
If you’re like me, and have spent more time glued to a screen than with your child then I challenge you to spend more physical time interacting with your child and spouse. From personal experience I honestly have to admit I feel less stress in my parenting role when I have a clear close connection with my kids. I can’t have that when I’m more worried about whether or not I’m going to have a decent amount of traffic to my blog to help ensure that I bring in the income we need each week. I need to learn to use my time online in a productive manner verses always chasing after the shining things. (I definitely have the Shiny Syndrome.)
Here’s my Parenting Challenge For US Both:
What are you doing about this situation?
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