Showing posts sorted by relevance for query teen angst. Sort by date Show all posts
Showing posts sorted by relevance for query teen angst. Sort by date Show all posts
Showing posts sorted by relevance for query teen angst. Sort by date Show all posts
Showing posts sorted by relevance for query teen angst. Sort by date Show all posts

Is It Time to Let Your Child Have Their Own Phone?

What Age Should Kid Get Phone?


If your child doesn’t already have their own phone, and they’re at an age when their friends are getting smart phones, no doubt, you'll face endless nagging conversations in the days up to their birthday and the holidays. The peer pressure for kids to get a cellphone is high, and if your child doesn’t have a phone, they may worry about being excluded from their groups or missing out on events (#fomo.) So, is it time to bite the bullet and get your kid the phone they’ve been wanting? It depends, right?

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Average Age
We face this in our family. On the one hand, I don't want to buy an expensive phone that's going to get lost or misplaced. But on the other hand, it would make life easier with after school clubs and activities. Children mature at different rates, each parent has to make their own decisions based on their own child. However, many parents want to know whether their child is ‘too young’ to get a cellphone, or whether they’re being cruel by holding out on this big purchase. According to recent studies, the average age to get a first cellphone is 10.3 years old, which means, by the time kids hit middle school, many of their friends will already have phones. 

Following Rules
Most parenting experts agree, it’s not the age of the child that matters, but more the maturity level and the ability to follow rules around smartphone usage. Before you put the device into your child's hands, you need to set ground rules. Set daily phone usage limits, how much time kids can spend, whether they can take the phone to school, etc.

Did you know, many cellphones have apps that help you keep track of your child’s screen time and ensure they’re not visiting inappropriate websites, but when you give your child a phone, you should be able to trust that they aren't using the phone in a way that will put them in danger. You can use "Google Find My Phone" to keep track of the phone's whereabouts, this can be very helpful when your teen is supposed to be home.

Protecting the Device
Cost is also a big factor when it comes to deciding to buy a cellphone for your child. Unless they’re already at an age where they have a part-time job, it’s another monthly bill for you to cover. You’ll need to ensure you have insurance in case the phone is lost or stolen. It’s worth looking for BodyGuardz iPhone 7 Plus cases too, just in case of any drops or knocks, so you aren’t stuck with a big phone repair bill. 

Ensuring Screen-free Time
One problem with giving children cellphones is that it’s harder to enforce screen-free times if they have their own device. If your kids go to the park with friends or hang out in their room, they’ll likely be glued to their phone.
When it comes to homework, studies have shown that simply having a phone in the room ruins a child's concentration, so you may need to watch out for slipping grades too. Consider enforcing cellphone usage times, say between 8 am and 10 pm, so your kids aren’t up all night surfing the internet or watching YouTube. When it’s time to do homework or sit down for dinner, place all phones in a basket out of sight, so there’s no temptation to fiddle with the phone and ruin family time.

Getting your first cellphone is a rite of passage in the digital age, but as a parent, it’s up to you to decide when the time is right for your child, and whether they can understand the responsibilities that come with this pricey gift. 
No matter what you decide, you'll have to deal with teen angst that will surely stress you out. We're right there with you. Got questions? Leave a comment and we'll try to help!


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Sunday Food for Thought on Teen Angst and Parenting

To Lie or not to Lie that is the Question What is a Parent to do?


What would you do? Parenting is hard. Kids don't come with instructions. Just because you can raise a baby to a teen, doesn't mean you can successfully raise a teenager. We all make mistakes. We learn together. Lying is the hardest part. Looking for advice on raising teens? Yeah... we don't have any. Enjoy!


To Lie or not to Lie that is the question what is a parent to do? Teens
My Musings on Teens and Lying.


What Would You Do?



Scenario:

You haven't been feeling well and you got sick during passing period at school. You stay in the bathroom for several minutes to recover.  You don't want to walk into class late - you'll feel embarrassed.

I'd go to the school nurse, tell her what happened, and ask for a pass.

Reasoning for not:  Didn't want to get sent home, wanted to go to the other classes.

Here's the kicker (s).

"When I came out of the bathroom I looked down and saw a blank hall pass in front of the lockers. I picked it up and used it to get back in class."

What? Do I look like I was born yesterday?

"It's the truth."

So... you expect me to believe that you are incredibly lucky?

"That's what happened."

Wow.  So, why do you think that happened? God is watching over you and just decided to help you skip class?

"I don't know."

Hmm... stuff like that only happens in the movies. Unless... maybe the Devil's been watching you and thinks he can get you on his team, you know?  Maybe it was a test and you passed with flying colors. Or did you fail? Anyway, if you're that lucky, we better go buy a lottery ticket.

"Okay! I saw some passes on a shelf a few weeks ago. When I came out of the bathroom, I remembered them, went back and got one."

Hmm... So, you saw these passes just lying around waiting to be taken and nobody else took them over a two-week period?

"That's right. I was surprised too."

Hmm... I bet you were.   You know, about now, your Dad would be saying something like, 'it's getting really deep in here' or 'that's a load of crap. So, what really happened?

Silence.  Anger rages.  Evil glares.

"I saw the passes a few weeks ago, I picked them up really fast, because I didn't want any STUPID people to take them and try to use them."

Hmm... Really? Why didn't you throw them away or flush them to protect the stupid?

More evil glares.

"I was in a hurry! I dropped them in a basket in my band locker.  Some of my friends walked by and saw them. They said, 'Whooo, you could use those to cut class'. That's where I got the idea."

Pfft! I want to laugh. I'm trying not to cry. My emotions are boiling over.

Am I insane? Hmm... So you're friends gave you the idea?

"Yes! I've seen STUPID people passing bogus hall passes to the teachers. The teacher look at them, say, 'this looks phony' and nothing happens. They get away with it!"

As far as you know.

"What!?"

As far as you know, they get away with it. The teacher probably turns it in to the office as 'bogus'.

So, let me tell you what I think happened. I think you saw the passes a few weeks ago, picked them up and put them in your locker waiting for an opportunity to use them.

Silence. Hands over face. Squinty eyes and rage ensues.

"Fine! I saw the passes and saved them to use them the NEXT time I cut class."

What? The next time?

"Yeah, I've skipped a bunch of times. I got  away with it. The teacher caught me twice but it was last period and I told her I went home early. She said if she caught me again she'd turn me in for all three times. I hate that class; it is full of STUPID people."

Hmm...  Stupid people who skip class, flunk class, and have to take learning recovery to fix their grades?

"Yes!"

And you're different from them because...?

"I'm not STUPID!"

I bet they aren't all stupid. I bet some of them come from broken homes, or they don't have homes, or their parents are drug dealers, or they have to work to help the family and don't have time for homework, or their parents fight all night long and they don't get any sleep, or...  you get the idea. 

Don't judge. You have no idea what goes on at their house. Maybe they have a learning disability and they are doing the best they can. 

Remind me why you are in that class?

"Because, I didn't turn in my essays!"

That's right; the essay the teacher called about the first week of school to let us know you needed to turn in. The essay that was a series of essays you had already turned in. The essay she emailed me about a week later. The essay she called me about at the end of the grading period. The essay that was just a couple of paragraphs on Martin Luther King or Cesar Chavez. 

The essay, you told me you completed when I got your progress report. The essay your father and I made you do in your room.
The one you bounced down the stairs smiling saying, "It's done." 

Thank God. "That wasn't so bad," said your Dad. "Aren't you glad it's over?"

The essay your teacher called me about a week before the end of the semester. She pleaded with me to have you turn it in so you didn't fail her class. She couldn't promise more than a 'D', but she'd see what she could do because the rest of your work was on par. 

You are one of her favorite students.

The essay you told me she lost. I relayed that message and she laughed, "Unlikely, I can't believe she'd say that. They go in a basket right by the door. I'll look again but..."

The essay, you finally promised you finished and handed in, and when the grades came out and you failed AP English, you said, "She lied. I knew she'd flunk me. I knew it didn't matter!" 

What? No. She wouldn't, she couldn't... she promised. We've got to call her and talk to her about this! "We can't; she's on maternity leave." 

Hmm...  Well, that's convenient; isn't it? Please help me understand; I know you didn't turn it in.

"I'm tired of getting low scores when everyone around me cries about missing one point!"

Hmm...  So, you'd rather flunk the entire class rather than earning a 'B'?

"Yep; at least people won't think I'm stupid. I'll just tell them I flunked because I didn't turn in my homework!"

Really? Let me consult with your Dad. It's unanimous, we both agree. He says,"It's stupid to flunk a class over one stupid essay. I think that's stupid." 

Right. The grade on the essay didn't even matter. Points were received (or not) for turning in all of the essays.

Five English classes in a row. Five teachers, "You're daughter is very intelligent. Brilliant. A joy to have in class." 

Five F's. Bored, you say? The first one was regular English. We decided she could fail AP English just as easily. So, she did.  Apparently, the teacher's are stupid and the work is 'unecessary busy work'.

Are there magic words that we can use to help her understand that brilliant, intelligent people can also do stupid things that make them appear stupid?

She's got guts. I can't imagine. She signed her name to the hall pass and turned it into the librarian who asked her who wrote it. She couldn't answer. The librarian asked what classes she was coming from. The librarian called the teacher who said, "Well, she's a good kid. If she skipped class she must have had a good reason." The librarian turned it into the Dean. 

How'd I find out? Innocently, "How was school today?"

"Oh, did they call you? I knew they would. Here's what happened..."

Shock. No one called, ever. I called the counselor. She has no record of any class cutting or other things we have dealt with at school. Neither the Librarian nor the Dean contacted her. Did it really get to the Dean?I don't know.  The Dean is also her volleyball coach- who knows what a fantastic citizen she is- 'a joy to have on the team'. 

If we are never punished for our actions, won't we keep repeating them, perhaps with more intensity and boldness each time?

After all, if she is getting away with this over and over again, isn't she really smarter than the rest of us "STUPID people"?

I'm a goody two-shoes; I would have done exactly what she said, 'picked that pass up before anyone else could take it and get into trouble', but I would have thrown it away immediately.

How about you? 

Are you sure about that? What would you do?

You might also like: I've got a confession to make involving hard-core drugs. I think you'll find it very interesting.

You might like our Pinterest Board for Teens too.











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Emotional Issues from Childhood Follow You To Adulthood

Are Your Personal Intimacy Issues Affecting the Family Unit?

Is your relationship in trouble? Straying from our regular blog topics, we’ve been writing a series on mental health. Turns out something that sounds like a very adult subject matter, has a wider effect on our personal lives. Personal intimacy issues. Say what? 

This post contains Amazon and other affiliate links. All opinions are my own.

Emotional Issues from Child Follow You To Adulthood


Generally, when we think of personal intimacy issues we think about sex. However, personal intimacy can also mean emotional intimacy. Many people struggle with emotional intimacy and over time, this alone can break a relationship. You don’t have to be sexually active to struggle with emotional intimacy issues. In fact, emotional intimacy issues can contribute to sexual intimacy. 

Depending on your family situation, you could be setting your kids up for emotional disaster. How do you raise healthy, emotionally intelligent children? Obviously, if we had all the answers, everyone on Earth would be emotionally stable, but life happens, right? 

Depression, anxiety, obsessive compulsive disorder, bi-polar disorder, and a variety of other common mental health issues can lead to a lifetime of difficulties in interpersonal relationships. If you can’t get along with family members, you’re likely not going to get along with peers or co-workers and your intimate relationships are going to suffer.

If you notice a family member struggling with interpersonal relationships, what can you do? The first step is to identify the problem. What is causing the mental health issue? It could be a chemical imbalance, childhood trauma, abuse, or even neglect.

If your children suffer, the next step is to get help. Whether you seek out a therapist in your community or find help online, getting an outside perspective is key to improving your situation. If the family dynamic is suffering due to personal intimacy issues between the parents, there are many resources online that can help. 

However, I know from personal experience that it can be difficult to get both partners on the same page. Sometimes, one partner would rather throw in the towel than ask for help from an outside source. I’ve been told that if you need an outsider to help, it’s far too late. Other people may feel uncomfortable or embarrassed to talk about their personal intimacy issues. For more information on common intimacy issues visit this link:  https://www.regain.us/advice/intimacy/common-intimacy-issues-and-how-to-deal-with-them/

When parents aren’t emotionally or physically connected, the children often face emotional issues as well, and can suffer from neglect. Parents can get so wrapped up in their personal problems, that they neglect their children without even realizing it. The key to a happy, healthy family is to keep all of the cogs working cohesively. Immediately after the breakup of our family, as they watched me fall apart, my children seemed surprisingly well adjusted. 

However, whether they knew it or not, they were holding it together, trying to be strong for mom. As time passed and I grew stronger and more sure about my own choices, my children began to show the after effects of the reality of a broken family. They withdrew, became emotional, and even aggressive at times. It seemed their entire personalities had changed in a few short weeks. 

Not only were we dealing with the break of our family unit, but the raging hormones of the wonderful land of teendom had conveniently coincided with it.  While there’s no good time for a breakup, note to self, the early teenage years have got to be worse. If I had to go back in time and do it all over again, I would do it sooner. My relationship with their father wasn’t good for any of us. Our personalities were not compatible and no amount of trying or counseling were going to improve it.

I struggled with perfectionism and obsessive-compulsive disorder, admitting the relationship wasn’t meant to be was extremely difficult for me. It took my children growing up and becoming reasonable, rational human beings who could recognize that the situation was impossible to repair, to give me the kick in the butt that I needed to move forward with my life. Unfortunately, all of this took a toll on their emotional well-being. 

If you’re facing a difficult situation in your relationship, don’t be afraid or embarrassed to seek out help. Don’t wait until the issues are out of control and beyond repair. Though humans are resilient, many mental health issues can get worse over time. Be sure you’re doing everything you can to satisfy the needs of your children and protect not only their physical, but also their emotional well- being.

 

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Feeling Disrespected by Family?

If Mama Ain't Happy Mental Health Article

Teen Angst