A Hill to Die On

Is it over-protective of parents to not let their kids have smart phones? No. It’s not overprotective – unless absolutely all forms of protection are “over-protective”. If parents are not there to protect our children from things that are proven to lead to their long-term unhappiness, then what are parents for?

Parents often ask: Shouldn’t we let them get accustomed to smart phones so they can regulate themselves? No. Adults don’t even have the ability to regulate social media use. If adults with fully formed brains aren’t able to put their phone down, kids certainly won’t be able to. Younger brains become adapted to phones even more quickly and fundamentally than adults. Their reality is shaped by online reality, their inability to cope with emotions and real-world experiences is shaped by their life online. This is why we see children increasingly pulling away from parents in outlook and culture. The developers of these phones and apps are smarter than our kids, and us – they know how to keep us coming back, they know how to create consumers.

As this study shows, (please click link) there really isn’t a lot of room for debate anymore. Smart phones are destructive to children’s minds and the younger a child gets a smart phone, the worse their mental health will be. The older they get a smart phone, the better their mental health will be.

Kids will fight it. They want the phone. But this is worth the fight, it’s worth their anger and nagging. This is a hill to die on. Their mental health is at risk. Delay a smart phone as long as you can. If they need a phone get a internet-less Gabb or Pinwheel, there are options out there. But let’s not send our kids down a road, alone, that is full of liars, thieves, perverts, and bullies – and not real ones they can fight – but fake entities, made to look virtuous.

I understand that many parents reading this may regret giving their child a phone and feel it is now too late. It isn’t. If you can’t physically take the phone away, arm you child with truth. Show them studies like the one linked. Have them watch podcasts or documentaries that warn them. The more they know, the more they can utilize their free will, against the odds. Let their own desire for happiness help them make good choices.

Our kids will face roads full of liars, thieves, perverts, and bullies – in the real world. As parents we want to help them develop the capacity to stand strong against evil influences. To do that they will need to be mentally tough, morally sure, and confident – let’s help them become what they need to be by not giving them a smartphone.


3 thoughts on “A Hill to Die On

  1. What is meant by “smart-phone”? I’m curious because our kids have iphones (starting in middle school) that we restrict most of the apps on. For instance, they don’t have safari (so NO internet access), they have a certain amount of “social” time for texting but no facebook or instagram apps on their phone. We have six adult children who don’t live here anymore and I have enabled our teenagers phones to be able to contact their older siblings even during “downtime”), so except for them, our teenagers’ phones don’t work to text friends after 10pm or before 6am. (They can send me a text request for exceptions which I may or may not approve.) I also have other apps that shut down during down-time. Would this be considered a “dumb-phone”? I think it would but wanted to clarify. I skimmed the chart and article attached to this post but didn’t see that they clarified “smart-phone” either. Thanks! (PS I LOVE the work you do!)

    Liked by 1 person

    1. From the research I have done I think smart phone is a fully open phone with internet and app access. Sounds like you have good limits. If a phone is a tool I think they can be very helpful but when it turns into a devise to communicate with strangers and be influenced by strangers it is a destructive force. Thanks for your support.

      Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s